Daniel 8

The vision of this chapter received historical fulfillment in the overthrow of Persia by Alexander the Great (330 BC), the division of Alexander’s kingdom into four (‘but will not have the same power’, verse 22), and the rise of Antiochus Epiphanes, who did what is here foretold of him in verses 9-12 and 23-25 (170-164 BC). Gabriel’s emphasis, however, on the vision having to do with ‘the time of the end’ (see verses 17 and 19) suggests that its meaning is not exhausted in Antiochus, but that he is only a type of one greater than he, and yet to come, who will act in a similar way. Cf. 7:24-26 and Matt. 24:15; 2 Thess. 2:8-10.

  1. What description is used both of the ram and of the goat in the time of their prosperity, and also of the king of verse 23?
    Yet what was the end of these kingdoms?.
  2. Why was Daniel so deeply affected by this vision?
    Consider how the prophecies of Jeremiah and Ezekiel seemed to indicate that the return from exile would coincide with the advent of the kingdom of God (see, e.g., Jer. 32:37-44; Ezek. 37:21-28), but this vision shows long vistas of history stretching into the future, and further suffering for the Jews.

Notes

  1. Verse 9. ‘The Beautiful Land’: i. e., Palestine.
  2. Verse 10. ‘The host of the heavens… the starry host’; used figuratively of Israel and her leaders.
  3. Verse 11. ‘The Prince of the host’: i.e., God himself. Cf. verse 25.
  4. Verse 12. Israel was to be given over into the power of the ‘horn’ because of transgressions, and true religion was to be suppressed.
  5. Verse 14. If the burnt offering ceased for 2300 time, that would be 1150 days, which is a little more than three years. It is known that Antiochus did suspend the burnt offering for three years and possibly a little longer.
Advertisements