“Three errors there are that forever are found
On the lips of the good, on the lips of the best;
But empty their meaning, and hollow their sound,
And slight is the comfort they bring to the breast.
So long as man dreams of a time in this age,
When the Right and the Good will all evil subdue;
For the Right and the Good war ever will wage,
And ever will Evil and conflict renew.
So long as men hope that Mammon will live
Like a bride with her lover, united to worth;
For her favour, alas, to the mean she will give,
And Virtue possesses no title to earth.
So long as man thinks that to mortals a gift,
The Truth, in her fullness of glory will shine;
For the vail of the goddess no mortal may lift,
And all that men do is to guess and divine.”
Book of Daniel was written to prefigure, in
outline, the course of history from the Babylonian exile to the second
of Christ, and to reveal the age of
millennial glory “underneath the
following that event. It,
therefore, exhibits the character of our own times, as part of the “Times of the Gentiles,”
which is really the
title of the whole book. As
prophet’s day so in ours the
It was consideration of events current in our own day, and viewed in the light of the “sure word of prophecy,” that induced the writer, though in the midst of much mental and physical suffering, to gather up some results of his past labours, and with the impressions received from recent events present them in a series of articles, to the editors of “Our Hope,” who generously allowed space in their publication in the Monthly, devoted to the movement in behalf of Israel, not alone in New York, but in both hemispheres. That movement, based upon the recognition of the fact that the divinely established distinction between Jews and Gentiles, nationally, is a standing one in the New as well as Old Testament history; that there is yet a glorious future for the ancient people of God; and that the turning of Israel to their own Messiah, “even Jesus,” strikes the hour of His appearing to them, and brings the emancipation of the nations from the politics and power that now enthral them, meets by decided approbation as it wins my heartiest sympathy. To enlist a deepened interest in an enterprise so worthy of support, and so ably conduced by the scholarly and self-denying editors of “Our Hope,” and encourage the study of Daniel’s book in its relations to Israel, the nations, and the [millennial] kingdom of God, also led to the exposition of the prophecies here given, and the offer of them to the Monthly just named. A general desire on the part of the readers, to see the exposition in book form, is the reason of the present volume.
book of Daniel consists of twelve chapters
– as we have it – of which five are historical, viz., 1, 3, 4, 5, 6 and seven
are prophetical, viz., 2,
7, 8, 9, 10-12, each a distinct prophecy, yet
all organically one. It
is with the
prophetical part, alone, the exposition has to do; and the object has
to give the tedious and oftentimes painful process connected with the
the text – a thing impossible in a space so brief, and withal
to the majority of readers – but the results of the processes, in a
popular and intelligible way, and so assist the understanding of the
contents scope and aim of the book, and its relation to all prophecy. These predictions set
forth, by means of
symbols and their interpretation, the political and religious struggles
Jews with the empires of the world, and the outcome of both, in greater
clearness, definiteness and unity, than are seen in all other prophets. They
are designed to be a book of comfort and hope for the Jewish people,
their Messianic expectations, and also a warning to the kingdoms of the
world. Their scope
the times of Antiochus Epiphanes, B.C.175-164, and beyond the times of
A.D.70, reaching to the second coming of Christ and the millennial
pertain less to the contemporaries
of the prophet than to the generation following.
They span all that remained of the Old
Testament time, and the whole New Testament also.
Things” in them are the end of our age, the Antichrist,
tribulation, the second advent, the [first]
resurrection, the deliverance of
amount of labour done in the critical and
exegetical study of the book in our generation has been very great;
much of it
virulent [i.e., highly
defence has been both scientific and
triumphant. It is
give even a summary of the bibliography.
The writer has spared no pains to make himself acquainted
latest results of the modern criticism, as far down as to 1897,
polychrome edition of Daniel by Professor
Kamphausen, and his formal attack upon the book, previously
issued. It is a
comfort to know that the book
still remains an anvil on which all hammers are shattered. We may admit a Maccabean
without any difficulty, even as we admit an editorship of our English
Bible. This is very
saying that the book is a Maccabean composition, or half and half so. In the light of all
criticism, we still
agree with Henstenberg that “to refer the composition of the book to
Maccabean times will
remain false so long as God’s word remains true; therefore, to all
with Sir Isaac Newton we can say
reject Daniel’s prophecies is to reject the Christian religion; for
religion is founded on his prophecy concerning Christ,”
statement ridiculed by Dean Farrar
who first distorts the words of
is customary to appeal to the fact that
certain evangelical scholars, like Delitzsch,
Kahnis, and others, have conceded to the critics the
Maccabean origin of
the book of Daniel, or at least a portion of it.
The appeal is worthless.
tells us “the whole church woke
up in the fourth
century to find itself Arian.”
The Middle Age found it Papal.
In the last century
“I lived in times of doubt and strife,
When child-like faith was forced to yield,
I struggled to the end of life.
Alas, I could not gain the field!”
there are scholars, as well as scholars,
whose words are not to be set aside by the sneers of second-hand
unbelieving criticism. It
is Kaulen who testifies, “After the
most thorough investigation I am certain that the writer of the Book of
shows a most intimate personal acquaintance with the
In a few pages, the results of a study of the different problem of the “Seventy Weeks,” are given. Since the publication of my work, “Studies in Eschatology,” the whole subject has been reviewed in the light of volumes not then accessible. The whole history of their interpretation has been carefully gone over, from 200 years before Christ to the present time; (1) the pre-Christian period, ending with our Lord’s Olivet discourse, A.D.33; (2) the period of the first two Christian centuries, including both Jewish and Christian interpretation, ending A.D.190; (3) thence to the close of the fifth century, A.D.490, from Clemens Alexandrinus to Ammonius; (4) the middle-age period to A.D.1250, from Severus to Aquinas; (5) thence to the sixteenth century, or reformation times; (6) thence to the present time* [*i.e., 1898]. The independent conclusions, previously reached, have all been confirmed. In this vast field of inquiry nothing has been left undone by Reusch who has given the Patristic interpretations, or by Calovius who has given the Mediaeval, or by Rohling who has given the Modern, or by Fraidi who has reviewed carefully all these labours, or by D’Envieu who has supplemented them. Time has added nothing, not even through the Higher Criticism, beyond what the ingenuity of men devised during the first four centuries. In general the four categories into which the various interpretations fall are (1) that Messiah appeared within the seventy weeks, the destruction of Jerusalem, A.D.70, being the end of the 70th week: (2) that Messiah appeared near the end of the 69th week, and was cut off in the middle of the 70th, the end of the 70th being the transition of the gospel to the Gentiles; (3) that the two Little Horns are the same, and the seventy weeks ended with the times of Antiochus, B.C.164, a view most rigorously repelled by the church; (4) that the Messiah appeared at the end of the 69th week, that the interval of the Roman times of the Gentiles lies between the 69th and 70th weeks, and that the 70th week is the last – Antichrist’s week – a view held by the ablest exegetes of the first three centuries. Delightful is the view held by Raymund Martini, A.D.1350, and by Solomon Levy, “a born Jew,” that “Prince Messiah” is not Cyrus, nor is “Messiah cut off” Onias III., but that “Gabriel to Daniel, and Gabriel to Mary, prophesied of the same Messiah, even Jesus Christ;” that Daniel, influenced by the Messianic hope and deliverance of Israel which Isaiah seemed to connect with the return from Babylon, supposed the time of the hope might be at the close of “Jeremiah’s seventy years,” and that, as Gabriel had already in 7 fixed the time of the second advent, so did he fix the time of the first in 9, and led the prophet to look out into the “Times of the Gentiles” to find both advents; and specially that Messiah must come between the completion of the second temple and its destruction by Titus.
The one satisfactory result of the whole study has been to see how certainly the ablest church exegetes, in early times, contended, and successfully, that the 70th week is the Antichrist’s week, at the end of the “Times of the Gentiles,” The interval between the third and fourth weeks was hidden from their eyes, and has remained undetected till the present time.
apology is needed for another work of the
book of Daniel, nor ever will be.
hold it to be unassailable that our Lord had the whole book of Daniel,
especially the vision of judgment, at His second coming, Dan. 7, directly in His
mind when He uttered His
great Olivet discourse concerning the end.
And I hold it to be indisputable by any mind not warped by
criticism, that the oracle in Daniel, and especially the vision of
His second coming, Dan. 7:
4, 8, foretelling
the study of Daniel’s book in the “Time
the End,” refers not only to its study in Maccabean times,
to 164, at the end of the third prophetic empire, but to the “Time of the End” of the
fourth, in its divided
state, i.e., to our own times and
immediate future. The
belongs to the great concluding prophecy in 10.-12. concerning
the “Warfare Great,”
whose climax is
the solution of the “Eastern Question.”
And because this concluding prophecy, 10.-12.,
is but the expansion of what is given in the closing part of 9,
it involves the study of the “70th
therefore of the “70 weeks;”
and since 10.-12.
is again but the expansion of 7. and 2.,
therefore the oracle, 12: 4, 8,
predicts the intense
study of Daniel’s whole book, and the understanding of it, as a sign of
the end of our age. This
all apology for such study unnecessary and justifies the interest felt
In order to keep the unity and aim of the book before the mind of the reader, the exposition is woven around the central theme of the book, viz., that the kingdom foretold by the prophet cannot come to victory “underneath all heavens,” until the second coming of the Son of Man. A further help to the reader to grasp the contents of the prophecies is to remember that all the matter of the predicted history falls under these seven rubrics – the Jews, the Four Empires, the Two Little Horns, the Seventy Weeks, the Warfare Great, the Messiah at both advents, the Kingdom.
to the study of the Jews, the histories by Edersheim,
Milman, Adams, and Josephus,
writer of much ability, dismayed at the aspect
of Christendum, and little anxious as to the inspiration of God’s Word,
or the old faith, proposes the doctrine of “our spiritual
conceptions,” and of “evolution spiritually,” as the quickest
way to bring in the golden age and the triumph of the kingdom of God. Hypothetically, he says,
world, the flesh, and the devil are at way with righteousness, once for
that we must look to convulsive overthrow of its establishment – to
millennial transition waited for so long in vain, and hidden so
of sight in the events around us.”
Again, “No matter how many convulsive changes and
religion may promise itself,
we see that they do not
come. Our Christian
faith, amid all
its prophetic gleams, has travelled a weary way in which nothing has
gained save in the slowest manner.”
If this is not “pessimism,” it is hard to tell what is. The statement is
untrue. The rapid
Christianity in the early ages is one of the best established facts of
history. The rapid extension of missions since the close of the
last century, and of
the translation of the Bible into almost all languages, are
so. And as to
evolution” in the “scientific sense,” the gradualism of the Darwin, Lyell, Huxley and Spencer,
repudiating all catastrophe
and cataclysm, what else but “slowness” is the progress through
interminable stages? The
“pessimism” rests on the denial of miraculous intervention which
accomplishes more in one hour than preceding centuries could achieve. It is precisely by means
“conclusive overthrow,” after long yet imperfect development, the
To one point I desire to call special attention. It is remarkable how the critics and the commentators have failed to see that by the words, “the Scripture of truth,” Dan. 10: 1, is meant nothing less than Daniel’s book, and not the unwritten book of “God’s providence,” or of the “divine decrees,” or the “Old Testament.” Orthodox interpreters have been blinded here, and every sharp-sighted critic, without exception, persistently evades the true interpretation, aware of its destructive force against the false theory of the book if once the fact is admitted. The admission of that fact forces the alternatives, either the writer of the book of Daniel was a guilty forger, whose crime can never be excused by “the custom of his times,” or Daniel, the prophet of the exile, was its author.
The chapters on the Type and Antitype, the Transition-Section, the Great Interval, in 11: 39, 40, the Antichrist’s Last Campaign, and the concluding Summation – not published in “Our Hope” for want of space – appear in the present volume. Some sections, also, omitted from the other chapters for want of space, are here supplied.
little volume is sent forth with the earnest prayer that God will bless
“Truth” of Daniel’s
the souls of all the “Wise”
the “Time of the End”
will study it with diligence, and find it a light to their
understanding and a
bulwark to their faith and hope. It
is well to remember that the
prophet’s word be a stimulus to work and pray for
Clifton Springs, March, 1898.
prophets of the Old Testament in a
marked and special manner looked forward into the future. They personated and
expressed the Hope
of Israel and the
- Dean Stanley.
DANIEL’S GREAT PROPHECY
– Character of the Book of Daniel; World-Power; Scope of the Book;
“By the rivers of
The canonicity and inspiration of the book of Daniel are established by testimonies more numerous and varied than can be claimed for any other sacred writing. They come from the pens of inspired prophets and historians, and from the whole body of Jewish literature subsequent to the close of Old Testament prediction. Chaldaean, Persian, Greek, and Roman authors have confirmed its statements. Centuries have verified its prophecies. The lips of Christ, Peter, Paul, John and the evangelists, have borne witness to its truth. The entire New Testament is effulgent [brightly shining] with its eschatology. The early church teachers, with rare devotion, applied themselves to search diligently and understand its contents, and held it aloft as a shining proof of the Christian faith. Schoolmen and reformers studied it with deepest interest. Jews, Christians and Mohammedans, Catholics and Protestants alike, have vied [striven] with each other to explore its mysteries. From B.C.534 to A.D.1998, through 2,400 years, more than ten thousand volumes have been written as a tribute to its worth and world-wide significance, and, in our generation, the movements of Assyria, Babylon, Persia, Armenia and Egypt, have united to do it honour. Holy men to-day realize the fact that in this book was concealed a sun of surpassing brilliance, whose light should burst forth in the “Time of the End” and irradiate with its splendour the eyes of all those blessedness it is to seek it. And yet, no book of the Bible is more distasteful to the unbelieving criticism of our times, nor does it find enemies more dangerous than many who profess to be defenders of the truth, degrading its dignity and value to the level of mere apocryphal production. Its offence is the manifest presence of the supernatural in every page. It claims to be a faithful chronicle of events transcending the possibility of all ordinary occurrence, a revelation also from heaven, and, in large part, a word spoken by angels. In it we read histories the most marvellous, the prophecies whose far-sightedness outstrips the utmost reach of human genius, forecast and sagacity. It provides the most brilliant confirmation of the inspiration of the prophets. It discloses the only true philosophy of history, unveils a procession of the ages, publishes an almanac of time and sets before us a moving panorama of marching empires and of rising and falling kingdoms, covering already nearly 2,500 years. It foretells a hundred events, three-fourths of which have been [literally] fulfilled. It supports its omniscient predictions by omnipotent deeds placed alongside of them as pledges of their accomplishment, the supernatural in the one case, the proof of it in the other. In an honest mind un-swayed by prejudice and false science it compels belief. Its grasp is the grasp of the Almighty.
Great moral and dogmatic truths are guaranteed by miracles speaking to the eyes, concerning the true God, the true religion, the true people of God, and the world’s destiny, confronting all the idolatries of the nations. Like a blazing head-light cast across the centuries and illuminating the whole track of time, shines the announcement that human history is the result neither of chance nor fatality, nor of man’s will alone; that the events of nations and the actions of men, although the product of their own free will, are yet pursuant of a predetermined plan of God, Most High, who “removes and sets up kings, gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to them that understand; who reveals secrets, knows what is in the darkness, and in whom light dwells;” that history has an appointed goal to which it must attain, and that the rise, rule and revolution of empires, their apogee [topmost point], decline and fall, have already been decreed and recorded, and must eventuate according to the will of God. In the most solemn manner, it emphasizes the truth that God, Most High, is “Governor among the nations,” greater than Bel, Nebo, Istar or Merodach, or all the gods of the heathen, a Power superior to all the “Powers,” a “Power, not ourselves, that makes for righteousness,” and walks through history: that while rewarding the good He punishes the evil; that for every crime committed by nations, governments or men, for every wrong abetted or inflicted, for every unrighteous deed, for every policy of pride and greed, of selfishness, oppression of the poor and the weak, for every indifference to distress, for every act of cruelty and ambitious lust of territory, wealth and supremacy, Justice will exact a righteous retribution; and that the one consolation left to sufferers amid all the complications that perplex the diplomacies of nations, retard the relief of un-avenged humanity, and try the patience of God’s children, is the deep conviction that such will be the case.
No sublimer moral truth ever passed the lips of any writer. What the Greek tragedy attributed to blind “Justice” standing behind every scene, and to “Necessity” behind Justice, the prophet describes as the work of a free, intelligent and over-ruling Power, “God Most High,” omnipotent and irresistible. Wickedness may seem to triumph for a time, and the prayer of outraged and enslaved communities meet only disappointment, but, sooner or later, judgment must strike the guilty.
Nor is it an abstract proposition this great truth is asserted, but is illustrated as a concrete fact in history, by the rise and fall of empires, states and kingdoms, on whose sepulchres the one epitaph stands written, “Dead for want of Righteousness!” that the lesson of the book, a theodicy that justifies the ways of God, vindicates His long-suffering and discipline. His last destructive stroke, and the setting up of His own kingdom where the “will” of God shall “be done on earth as it is in heaven.” National sin must be punished, the governments of earth must be destroyed, and the nations judged, in order to their salvation. Not monarchs, nor empires, but “The heavens do rule!” God alone is the ground of the universe, and His righteousness, truth, mercy and holiness, His will His judgments, are the establishment of His throne. Might does not make right, but the nature and will of God. Right is not the enactment of the State. The maxims of expediency and selfish interests are not law. The will of princes, cabinets and counsellors is not the measure of obligation. The right of rule rests not on human conquests, nor is the power to rule the creation of a people. God alone is the ground and source of all. Such the doctrine and the lesson of the book.
the things that excite our curiosity and
arrest our attention, as we read the book, are the metallurgy
of its predictions, representing four great empires in succession – two
Oriental, the Babylonian and Medo-Persian; two Occidental, the
Graeco-Maccedonian and the Roman.
The representation is made first by means of specific
silver, brass and iron, mixed with clay; next, by four wild beasts, the
bear, leopard and the untamed ten-horned monster, or megatherium. The second two are again
two domestic animals, the ram and rough goat.
A colossal statue of human form, bright
and terrible, its head gold, its feet iron and clay, stands erect as the symbol of the whole organized political
power of the world in unity, including its various
policy, its material strength built upon the products of the mines, its
degeneration, disintegration and division; in short, the entire
the world-power, through a succession of empires, the last of which
its fragmentary state until the Lord comes.
whole symbol is a picture lesson and divine programme of the
advancing systematically and organically in definite periods of time to
fixed in the counsel of God, that goal the
absolute destruction of all Gentile governments, policies and power, and
erection of the
As to the inner spirit, essence, nature and life of the world-power, it is symbolized by that of four predacious [predatory] beasts, whose ethics are those of the jungle, viz.: the physically “fittest to survive,” the Rob Roy ethics of
“The simple plan
That he may take who has power,
And he may keep who can.”
motto for one the same for all, “Arise,
devour much flesh!” This
is further illustrated by the
action of the two domestic cornuted [horned] animals,
butting and rebutting one another.
The stronger devour the weaker, in every
case for selfish interests and increase of power.
Governed by savage, sensuous, impure,
sinful and brutal impulses and passions, it perpetuates its right to
man by military violence, plunging horns, teeth and iron heel, into
or people that opposes. In
the whole world-power, from first to last, is constitutionally beastly
metallic, and continues so down to the
end of its existence, and this notwithstanding the progress of the
culture and civilization, and in spite of every influence of
cannot be otherwise, for
selfishness and jealousy are its inner principles.
Down to the end of Gentile rule, the
motives and the policies that actuated Sennacherib, Nebuchadnezzar,
Alexander and Caesar – heathen motives – are the back-lying springs
of action that will govern the whole world-power, and every form of it,
“I the King” or “We the people.” Never
can the religion of Jesus Christ celebrate a universal victory under
heaven until the heaven-descending “Stone”
grinds to powder the proud Colossus, and the Son of Man annihilates in
the last anti-Christian ruler.
The life of all the first three beasts passes into the
terrible than all before it, even in its divided ten-horned state, grim
iron armament, while among these separate horns and kingdoms an
arises, plucking up a “Dreibund” in its way, thus himself becoming
“an 8th” “stouter than his fellows,” acquiring the
power of all the rest, anti-Christian to the core, the persecutor of
of God, and bent on universal empire.
That is the last picture of our modern culture and
civilization, a picture “Modern Progress” is determined not to
believe, but which God is determined it shall believe, when its
laid low, its loftiness bowed down, and its books of sorcery, like
Diana-worshippers at Ephesus, are given to the flame.
fate of the persecuting Horn, the last representative of Gentile
science and culture, and that of his kingdom, and of the whole
their grave rises
in beauty and glory, the
prediction which hatred of its truth makes
men deny, and refer the whole to
the dream of a disappointed Maccabean Jew, the guilty forger of the
Daniel’s name 400 years after Daniel’s death!
Wonderful beyond imagination!
prophet traverses the march of world empires and kingdoms from his own
the end of our present age, the second coming of Christ. He foretells the conduct
world-power, and illustrates its madness by the mania of Nebuchadnezzar
and the doom of Belshazzar. Running down the centuries
us to Cyrus, Cambyses,
Artaxerxes, to Alexander
and his successors, the struggles of
to the mission of Daniel, it was, in many
respects, like that of Joseph and Moses at the court of Egypt, and
that of Paul to the Gentiles. He
was a “chosen vessel”
God to bear “His name before
Gentiles and kings,
and the children of Israel,” – not only to take part in
great events of the Babylonian and Persian empires, but to represent in
to the kings who ruled them, God’s ancient people and the true
to fortify the captives my miracles and prophecies, confound the
and idolatry, and maintain the truth
concerning the coming Messiah and His kingdom. To disobey the orders of
the court with
absolute impunity, and yet maintain his position in spite of the king
satraps, to defy the sword, the flame and the lion’s den, and compel
decrees in favour of “God Most
this was the privilege of the prophet and his three companions. The wise men of the
Magi of the East, believed that they alone had wisdom and had derived
their gods, whose images and temples towered high over all heathendom. The powers of the world
they acted independently of Jehovah.
The God of Israel, for them, was no more than Moloch or
tribal deity of nomads, less civilized than themselves – powers who
imagined that they governed the world according to their will, and that
future was in the hands of them and their gods.
It was Daniel’s mission to
dissolve this delusion, and prove to them
that they were but instruments in the hand of “God Most High,” who ruled
the whole course of
history according to His own will, that the whole future lay before Him
map prepared by His own hand, and that He who knows the future must be
Ordainer and Disposer of all events, a Power personal, intelligent,
holy, and the Almighty whom neither the kings nor the nations could
without punishment. It was in the mission of Daniel to
humiliate, shame, and abase the pride of all world wisdom and world
exalt the God of Israel.
such means could he prepare the vast peoples of the
wonder is that this book began to be written
by a young man eighteen years of age, a captive at the court of
hostage for the good behaviour of the vassal king of Judah; a youth of
blood and a holy celibate for the kingdom’s sake.
Before he reached his majority he
reproduced and interpreted the monarch’s dream, and because of his
learning, genius and fear of God, grew to become the prime-minister and
of the magi in the realms of
In view of what is yet to follow, and in place of a refutation of modern false criticism, not possible here to be made, I assume at the outset, (1) the genuineness and authenticity of the book of Daniel; (2) its Messianic character; (3) its eschatological scope; (4) that its five great prophecies are one prophecy, and that its miraculous narratives were intended to be pledges of their fulfilment; (5) that the Medo-Persian empire, viz.: that of Cyrus, is the second, and the Roman empire is the fourth of the four prophetic empires in the Colossus, this fourth one now divided into the separate and independent kingdoms of the modern European state’s system, and destined to pass away; (6) that the term “kingdom” is meant both a reign and a realm, and ON THIS PRESENT EARTH; (7) that the fulfilment of so much already of what Daniel foretold is a guarantee that the rest will be accomplished. And our thesis is this, that the Fifth Kingdom to rise on the ruins of all the rest of the kingdoms of Christ in immediate and universal victory, and which (1) never as yet so risen, (2) never can, and (3) never will so arise, till the second coming of the Son of Man in the clouds of heaven, to put down all Gentile politics and power, and introduce His universal reign of righteousness and peace. Herein, I afford occasion for the taking of offence without, however, giving any, by modern church-wisdom which, instead of studying the book of God, invents a new revelation for His benefit, removing far from the heart of the church THE HOPE that should lie nearest to it, and assigning to the church a mission nowhere assigned to her in the Scriptures – an invention which apart from the revelation God has given, the empirical proofs of nineteen centuries have shown to be false, and the error of which nineteen more, should they come, would only redundantly confirm. This attitude, however, is a necessity, while any offence taken on its account is a mere contingency. The unity, harmony, consistency and organic self-interpretation of the Scriptures are the evidence of their infallibility and a bulwark of defence confronting every human theory. The “sure word of prophecy” is not darkness, but a “light shining in a dark place, unto which we do well to take heed.” And the certitude we seek is assured by the fact that “no prophecy of the Scripture is of any private interpretation (of what God’s mind is), nor came in old time by the will of man, but men spake from God, being borne along by the Holy Ghost.”
“It is undoubted that in the remarkable human form of the Collossus, seen by the Chaldean king, and interpreted by Daniel, the history of mankind, especially of the world-power in its imperial forms, and the kingdoms derived from it, has been unveiled, from Daniel’s time to the second coming of Christ and the establishment of the Millennial reign. The best and most learned investigators of the Scriptures, to-day, are unanimous herein, viz., that the first empire, the head of gold, is the Babylonian, the silver is the Medo-Persian, the brass is the Graeco-Macedonian, the iron is the Roman, and the clay feet and toes the modern European States-system, including Syria, Egypt and Greece. We have only to wait till Jesus Christ, the Corner-stone of His church, and now the Top-stone in heaven, shall come and destroy the dynasties of this world, and bring His own kingdom to victory everywhere.”
(Israel’s place in history; Babylon’s Place; The Fundamental Prophecy; Law of Prophecy; The Colossus; Impact of the Stone; Rationalism; “The Days of those Kings;” The Rolling Stone; False Interpretation; The True; Honour of Daniel and Glory to God.)
proof of our thesis found at the close of
the previous article, rests on a clear understanding of
Daniel wrote, the historical situation was
deeply significant. In
spite of the
light of nature, the whole world was wrapped in spiritual gloom. The period preceding the
had been one of sanguinary [courageous] conquest,
such a time Daniel enters into history,
B.C.606, a captive at the centre of all world movements. God causes the Babylonian
king, as He
did Pharaoh, Alexander and Pilate’s wife, to “dream a dream,” the dream
of the great monarchy
image, in chapter 2,
and also to forget the
dream. This dream
interpretation are the fundamental
prophecy of all the
prophecies in the book of Daniel.
All else is supplementary to this.
repeats and enlarges this,
under new symbols, in order to bring out something new in the
character of each of the four empires.
repeats again the second
and third empires, and yet other symbols, again to develop something new. Chapter 9
returns to the fall of
We are ready now to see the proof of our thesis, given at the close of the previous article. The monarch’s dream is in 2: 31-35, the interpretation in 2: 36-45. The point of chief interest is the Impact of the Stone on the toes of the statue or image, i.e., the destruction of the Gentile World Power to which Israel is now subject in every nation under heaven, and has been since the crown passed from the head of Zedekiah and Gentile sceptres have ruled God’s ancient people. The prophet reproduces and interprets the forgotten dream of the king. Coming to the explanation of the “toes” of the statue, he says, “And as the toes of the feet were partly of iron and partly of clay, the kingdom (the fourth) shall be partly strong and partly broken. And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with clay, they (the toes, i.e., the kings of the ten kingdoms) shall mingle themselves with the seed of men, but they shall not cleave one to another (royal and political alliances will be broken) even as iron is not mixed with clay. And in the days of those kings, shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever. Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and brake in pieces the iron, brass, clay, silver and gold, the great God hath made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter, and the dream is certain, and the interpretation is sure.”
Among the secrets of the future, the prophet, therefore, reveals (1) the total destruction of the statue, i.e., of the politically organized gentile power, and the substitution of the Kingdom of God in the stead of all earthly kingdoms, forever,* and (2) that the time of this world crisis is “hereafter,” even “in the days of those kings,” the toes, therefore, in the last days of the “kings,” who are the heads of the separate and contemporaneous “kingdoms” into which the fourth, or Roman, empire will be divided. By the iron he means the hard and strong imperial, and by the clay the weaker, more plastic, and popular, element in human governments, seeking vainly to combine [democratically] and cohere in political unity; absolutism repelling popular freedom, and constitutionalism, and reversely the latter the former; mixed monarchies, where the popular will [of the people] wars against the imperialism of crowns [and governmental authority] and defies the will of the crown; a state of political insecurity and instability. By the mingling of the kings with the seed of men, royal alliances and intermarriage of royal houses to strengthen dynastic interests, is meant. By the “Stone” cut out from the mountain without hands, and falling upon the toes of the statue, is meant the descent of Jesus Christ from heaven in judgment to smite the kings of the earth and dash the nations in pieces. By the fall of the statue, the destruction of the whole world power is signified, and by the stone becoming a “mountain” filling the whole earth, is meant the world-embracing, universal, indestructible and everlasting* kingdom of Christ, set up in victory, ON THIS PRESENT EARTH, on the ruins of all existing governments, in the last days of the last kingdoms into which the old Roman territory will be divided.
dislike of supernatural and
far-reaching prophecy attempts to show that the book of Daniel was
the days of Antiochus Epiphanes, B.C.175-164, nearly 400 years after
dead, and that the “Ten Toes”
represent not any contemporaneous kingdoms to be formed out of the
empire, but are ten individual successors of Alexander the Great – the
kings, not contemporaneous, but in line.
Still more, those “kings” do not mean
“kingdoms,” and that the fourth empire in the statue is not Roman
but the Graco-macedonian. Words
need not be wasted. Hereafter
shall see that the book of Daniel was composed by Daniel during the
exile, and under the reign of Cyrus; that the fourth empire is the
that the “Ten Toes”
kingdoms formed out of it.
Furthermore, in prophecy the terms “kings”
and “kingdoms” are
convertible. The “kingdoms”
are represented in the persons of their kings, and the kings represent
kingdoms. The Four
called both “kings”
and “kingdoms,” Dan. 7:
Ten Toes are also
called both “kings”
and “kingdoms,” in
the same verse, 2: 44.
and “kingdoms” are
identical in 2: 38, 39.
The vain attempt to exclude the Roman empire from the
statue, and so
exclude the birth of Christ from the development of the prophecy;
His crucifixion, the destruction of
question as to the time
point of the impact
is vital. The
teaches that this impact occurs at the junction of the knees with the
the statue, where the
The efforts of post-millennialists to break this exposition are vain. Nothing is clearer than that the empires symbolized in chapters 2 and 7 are the same, and therefore the “end” in each the same, viz., the end of the fourth divided empire. Indisputable is the fact that the “ten toes” and the “ten horns” represent the same kings and kingdoms, and that the destruction of the one is the destruction of the other. Conscience, honesty, truth, cannot otherwise hold. Therefore, again, nothing is clearer than that the days here mentioned as the days of the toes (2: 44) are the “1260 days,” or “time, two times and half a time,” of the horns in 7: 25, i.e., the last 1260 days of the 70th week of Daniel, as seen in 9: 27 and 12: 7. Post millennialists have no option here. With pre-millennialists they firmly hold that Daniel has unfolded not merely the future, like other prophets, but has given the date of the first advent of Messiah, then the crucifixion and next the destruction of Jerusalem, followed by the times of the Gentiles, Dan. 9: 26, Luke 21: 24, and closed by the restoration of Israel and overthrow of Gentile governments. They admit that the prophet has given us not merely the time-point for the setting up of the Messianic kingdom in humiliation, as a kingdom of the cross, viz., the first advent, but also of the setting of it up as a kingdom of THE CROWN - [But “Few,” ‘post’ or ‘pre-millennialists’ however, ‘admit’ a kingdom specifically for those from amongst His redeemed people, whom He deems worthy to rule with Him, (Luke 20: 35; Matt. 16: 27. cf. Rev. 3: 11)] - in glory at the second, and that he has taken off the dark veil that obscured the future and unrolled to the eyes of His people the whole partway of their sorrows, their glorious end and the doom of their oppressors. They admit more; they admit that he has connected all this with a scheme of chronology in chapter 9 which locates the time-point of the final deliverance at the close of Gentile times, and at the close of the last half of the 70th week. Misfortune, indeed, immense and protracted, that for so many centuries this 70th week should have been regarded as immediately succeeding the 69th, therefore as following the birth of Christ. But now that this great error has been destroyed, and the 70th week shown to be the antichrist week at the end of our [evil] age, the last ground of objection is removed. The “ten toes” being ten “kingdoms” and “king,” and their last days being the days preceding the impact of the stone, who is Christ in judgment, it follows that “the days of those kings” are the last “1260 days” of the 70th week of Daniel. They are still future to us and have nothing to do with the first advent.
But conclusive beyond all is the New Testament light upon the whole question. On all hands it is admitted that the “ten horns” of the beast in Rev. 13 are identical with the ten horns of the beast of Daniel 7, and that there, as here, “1260 days” are the days assigned as the days of the fourth empire. And as the horns are the toes, and both are the kings, it follows that “these kings” in Dan. 2: 44 are precisely the “ten kings” in Rev. 17: 12, whose alliance with the Antichrist or little horn of Daniel 7 endures 1260 days, and whose destruction with him is the work of the Son of Man, the Stone, Jesus Christ, at His second coming. The impact of the stone is, therefore, at the second advent and was not at the first, and the kingdom set up as a result of that impact is not yet established in the form predicted, nor can it till the Lord Himself comes.
is true that nothing is said or seen in chapter 2
of the Antichrist, the Son of Man, or the clouds of heaven, for the
reason that it is Nebuchadnezzar’s
dream the prophet interprets and to
the heathen king God made no revelation of the Antichrist, the Son of
second advent or of Israel’s deliverance, but only in the course and
of Gentile kingdoms and power.
It is in the next vision where the symbols are changed in
order to bring
further and new that we meet these things. Chapter 2 is
the fundamental and general
vision. All that
supplementative and more minute [and] unveiling.
Such is the law of progress in divine revelation. As the tree branches and
buds, so does
impact of the stone
is eschatological. All
that is said
of the first coming of Christ in the book of Daniel is found in chapter 9, viz., that
His birth should occur at
the close of the 69th of the seventy weeks there foretold and His
precede the destruction of
further point, by both pre- and
idea of rolling has been introduced
into the text. They
speak of the
“rolling stone.” By
post-millenarians this is done to evade
the chiliastic doctrine, the doctrine that the kingdom cannot come to
over all the earth till Christ comes.
Prejudiced by early education,
false teaching and declamation of good men, trained to
spiritualize the prophecies
and deny to Israel a national future, or a millennial
age on this
present earth, after our own, and before the final
new heaven and earth,
they must find some way to break the force of the stone’s destructive
impact, and make the “days of
mean 2,000 years at least, if not 20,000 more! The stone “rolls,” and the
“rolling” is an evangelical process, peaceful, missionary and full
of music and love, with now and then some transient friction by way of
wars and rumours of war, with here and there a famine, earthquake or
pestilence, which, however, only assist the rolling.
The grinding is gradual, caused by the
progress of Christianity, education, culture and civilization. By religion, better
ethics and love, human governments, especially those of the Christian
It is a customary method, among the ordinary expounders of Daniel’s book, to represent the impact of the Stone in the following way: “these empires have all passed away, already, and the kingdom hewn out of the hard quarry of sin-petrified humanity by divine grace, has already been established in the Christian church. During her history empires and thrones have risen and fallen, and nations have rushed to arms and swept, as with a tornado of blood, the surface of the earth, then gone to rest, but the kingdom stands. Age after age the arrows of ridicule and scorn have been shot at its subjects, the artillery of infidelity has attacked its strongholds, the sharp-shooters of wit and genius have sallied forth against its unwary hosts, and every description of opposition has been leagued against the Lord and His Anointed. But the kingdom stands.” Thus, after “all these empires have passed away” and “no place was found for them,” they still exist, and (to quote another word) “the armies of the Lord press on to victory!” The Stone is rolling still from the “quarry” across the imagined plain in order yet to reach the Toes of the statue – non-existent yet existing. Sobriety might well inquire whether a little grammar, logic, and study of Daniel’s book, might not have spared the public exhibition of a rhetoric so self-contradictory and amusing?
most common defence of this presentation is
to say that the “kingdoms”
statue only heathen kingdoms are meant, and, as a matter of fact, the
in large part has been already fulfilled.
The misfortune of that answer is two-fold, (1) that three
of the empires
– Babylon, Medo-Persia and Greek – had passed away
before the “Stone”
and that instead of striking the fourth, the fourth struck it, and laid
its grave, and that now, though ascended to heaven, it cannot descend
mountain till the last days of divided Roman empire; and (2) that it is
precisely on Christian toes and Christian horns the “Stone” falls, and it is
so-called, that are ground to powder.
The impact of the Stone is a judgment not on heathenism,
Christendom, after the gospel has been given to all nations. It smites the “Christian
Powers” that be, in order to make room for the
introduce the “rolling,” but in order to show “two
stadia” in the kingdom set up.
These they call the “Kingdom of the Rolling Stone,” and
“Kingdom of the non-Rolling Mountain,” the one dating from the
first advent, the other from the second.
By this means two separate functions are assigned to the “Stone,” (1) that of
2,000 years or more, (2) that of impact at the end of these years. All
this springs from the fact that the time of the first advent is assumed
“time of the days of these kings,”
which it is not. Even
supposition that the Stone rolled on a plain, what impression
have on the statue? None! The moment it strikes the
statue falls. The
stone does not “roll”
after its contact with the toes.
The church-period does not follow the impact, but precedes
it. The toes are
the end of
empire. It is true
Christ’s kingdom makes progress in this age by extension of the gospel,
but the church period and the progress of Christianity are precisely
that nowhere enter into the visions of Daniel.
is seen in his perspective as in John’s.
He has nothing to do with the
development of the church.
And such was the view of the holy prophet who spake by inspiration of God. He humbled the monarch’s pride by teaching that Israel’s God was not defeated because Israel had been delivered, for [wilful] sin, to Gentile hands, but still lived as “God Most High,” a Revealer of secrets, Almighty to save, righteous in punishing sin, [no respector of persons in judgment], yet watching in love His people; that, one day, Gentile power should perish forever, and the kingdom of God be set up in victory everlasting* from pole to pole. The rise and fall of successive empires, of which the fourth is the Roman, was shown to the monarch, the far “end,” the doom of man’s governments, the establishment of the government of God, AND ON THIS PRESENT EARTH, when God’s will [shall] be “done on earth as it is in heaven.” Then God’s people, heirs of the kingdom, will be free from the despot’s chain, and humanity cease to groan beneath a burden no power but God’s could remove. So preached the great pre-millennial prophet of the exile in the ears of the king of the greatest kingdom on earth. A doctrine whose teaching to-day THE CHURCH DISHONOURS. To the monarch it came as a message from God by the mouth of a seer who declared that “the vision is CERTAIN and the interpretation is SURE.” It impressed the soul of the king. It brought glory to God; to Daniel, great honour, abundant gifts, a seat in the gate of the king, as primate of all the realm and master of all the wise, and to Daniel’s friends, dignities next to his own. May the vision be soon fulfilled!
And such was the view of this prophecy taken by great church teachers in early times, of whom two remain unsurpassed, the one, Irenaeus the Great; the other, his greater disciple, Hippolytus, the first saying, “At the end of our age the Stone will strike the statue,” and “Jesus Christ is the Stone;” the second saying, “At the end of our age the Stone grinds to powder the kingdoms of this world.” Nor will the prophecy admit any other interpretation.
Messiah’s kingdom is ‘Eternal,’
it is also ‘Temporal,’ If
it is of unmeasured duration, not merely indefinite but absolute,
temporal limits, it is no less a kingdom of measured duration,
temporal limits, and bounded by great historic events.
in essence, it is many
forms. Its organic
growth, from a
seed to a tree, necessitates this.
And this was the Hebrew faith.
It is the biblical view also. The word ‘Olam,’
‘Ever,’ does not,
of itself, and by
fixed necessity, always denote the annihilation of time, but as
Hebrew usage, denotes simply unbroken
continuance up to a special epoch in history, or to a certain natural
termination. It has a relative as well as an absolute
sense, a finite as well as an infinite length. It means ‘Here’
as well as ‘Beyond,’
and applies to
that comes to an ‘End,’
- [“Then the End
will come, when he (Christ) hands over the
to God the Father after he has
destroyed all dominion, authority and power.
For he must reign (upon this
earth) until he
has put all his enemies under his feet:” (1
Cor. 15: 24, 25, N.I.V.)]
– as well
as to one that has ‘no End.’ For this reason, a great
or “Age,” is called
‘Olammim,’ and in order to express
infinite time, the
reduplication is used, ‘Ages of Ages,’
Olammim.’ It is therefore a false
say that because the term ‘Le Olam,’
is applied to the Messianic kingdom, therefore the Hebrews contradicted
themselves, when they assigned to it limits at the same time. Messiah’s kingdom is
also Eternal, and in
both senses, Olamic.
The bondsman’s free covenant to serve his master lasted ‘forever,’ in its present
form, but that only
means ‘till He comes.’ True to this view, the
ever held to a
- Nathaniel West, D.D.
“Imperial powers must sink when virtue fails,
And selfishness with pride alone prevails;
He argues ill who from its fortune draws
The goodness or the badness of a cause;
Success on merit does not always wait;
Through prosperous crime the ancient empire fell;
Ambition, bloodshed, guilt, their funeral knell;
Unerring law, with its resistless force,
Mapped out for each its swift and downward course;
A ruling power defined their years, their pace,
The road that led to judgment and disgrace;
Were not events by Him, Most High, controlled,
How could their certain order be foretold?
How could the prophet sing of future doom,
Or in the present read the age to come?”
(Daniel, Chapter 7. – Critical Question; Vision of the Four Beasts; The Fourth Beast and its Horns; The Little Horn; Vision of the Judgment of the Horn and the Nations; An Ancient of Days; Son of Man; Overthrow of Kingdoms and Sultanates; Chiliasm; The Kingdom given to the Saints; Time of the Judgment, Place of the Judgment; The Ten Horns; The Criminality of modern World-Powers; Their Doom.)
critical question of importance confronts the
student of this prophecy, and involves the veracity of the whole book
Daniel. A word,
necessary as to Daniel’s historical reliability, with which his
prophecies are so intimately connected.
The date of the vision and its writings are said to be in “the first year of Belshazzar, king of
the Babylonian cylinders of Cyrus
and Nabonnaid, and the annalistic tablets of the time,
have successfully repelled this assault on Daniel’s
name Belshazzar has
been discovered under the form of “Bel-sar-usur,” the
“Ha-bal-sarru” of the Chaldean army, the “Vice-king”
and “eldest son” of Nabonnaid, the last king of Babylon, who
reigned 17 years, B.C.555-538, this “son” being co-regent during
the last three years of his reign, i.e. three years next preceding
Babylon’s fall, 538. The
monuments still further establish the facts that to “Bel-sar-usur”
was entrusted the defence of
inscription on the great Cyrus-Nabonnaid
Cylinder closes its
account of the capture of
now for the prophecy itself. In
the monarch of
vision of the Fourth Beast makes an
unparalleled advance in the mode of prophetic representation, by
solemn assize, in which “One
like the Son of Man”
comes with clouds, to destroy the last Antichrist and all Gentile
power, and to erect a fifth and universal monarchy “underneath all heavens.” It is the high-point of
Old Testament eschatology. There
is nothing like it anywhere else
in all the prophets. It
paralleled only by the scenes in the Revelation given of God to Christ,
Him through His angel to John. As
picture of the advent it is without a peer in the Old Testament,
all other representations by its solemnity, sublimity, and majesty, its
power and its terror. It
more largely than any other scene into the New Testament prophecy, and
basis of all the New Testament representations of the End. Twenty-one out of
verses are here given to the fourth, or
prophet beholds four empires emerging, one
after another, out of the billowy sea of the heathen world. The surging waters are an
emblem of the
heathen nations in tumult. The
Beasts correspond to the metals in chapter
and in the order of their appearing.
The strength and swiftness of the Babylonian empire and
its ferocity are
represented by a Lion
with eagle’s wings.
The loss of its plumage denotes the
cessation of its conquests, and its change of posture from that of a
that of a man, and the gift of “a
heart,” the moral effect produced by the recovery of the
king from his seven year’s mania.
Dan. 4: 16;
25-37; 34-37. The
itself with its paw “on one side,”
marks the superiority of the Persian to the Median element in the
empire of Cyrus. The
“three ribs” in its
mouth are his conquests of
is that which attracts the prophet’s special notice; a Beast, dreadful,
exceeding strong, terrible, with iron teeth, devouring, breaking in
stamping, diverse from all the rest.
the symbols of
kings and kingdoms together, surmount the head of the Beast, among
having “eyes like a man,”
denoting its intellectuality
and human personality, and a magniloquent mouth blaspheming. Uprooting a triple
alliance that stands
in its way, it acquires the power of all the horns, because “stouter than its fellows.” Three years and a half it
“saints of the Most High,”
Jewish people, changing their festive times and ritual laws, subjecting
great tribulations. At
the end of
this period a Judgment scene breaks in, and terminates the mad career
Horn. Thrones are
placed, (not cast
down) in the heavens immediately above earth, for judges to sit upon,
midst of which the “Ancient of
(Hattiq Yomin), the “delayed”
sits, venerable to behold, arrayed in white vesture, “white as snow and the hair of his head
like the pure wool.”
Pavilioned in flame, streams of fire
proceeding before Him, ten thousand times ten thousand angels
presides over the heavenly Sanhedrin come for judgment.
Judgment sits and the books are opened.”
The effect of the judgment is
stated. The Beast,
Eleventh Horn, who, by acquiring all power, had become the whole Beast
own person, is taken and slain, and his body given to Tophet, the
flame. The rest of
survive a brief season, after their dominion is taken away, and are
destroyed. But this
is not all. Though
God the Father, the “Ancient of
Days,” presides, yet “Another,”
to whom “dominion and glory”
are given, i.e., the right to judge, rule
and receive the honour, as well as the kingdom, suddenly appears in the
of the scene. “I saw in the night visions, and behold,
One like a Son of Man
came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of Days, and
him near before Him. And
there was given to him dominion, and glory,
and a kingdom, that all peoples, and nations, and languages, SHOULD
His dominion is an everlasting dominion which shall not pass away, and
kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.” It is the “Parousia” of Christ we have
here, the second advent of the
Son of Man, to whom the Father has committed all judgment, that all men
honour the Son even as they honour the Father. John
5: 22, 23. It
prophet was impressed and perplexed by the
solemn vision, and “would know
the truth of all
this” that he had seen, “the
of the fourth beast”
especially, “and of the ten horns,”
and yet more especially
“of the other that came up,
before whom three
fell,” “the horn
that had eyes, and
a mouth speaking very great things, and whose look was more stout than
intensely curious and particular in his specifications.
An angel explains. After
briefly describing the all-conquering
character of the Roman empire, (7:
says, “And the Ten Horns thou
sawest out of this
kingdom (the Roman) are
Ten Kings that shall
arise, and another shall arise after them, and he shall be diverse from
first ones, and shall subdue three kings.
And he shall speak words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High,
and think to change
times and laws. And
saints) shall be given into his
hand until a time, two
times, and the dividing of a time (1260 days). But the Judgment
shall sit, and they (the Ancient of Days, the Son of Man,
the angels) shall take away his
Sultanate to consume and destroy it to
the end.” (7:
now comes the grand announcement of
the outcome and goal of the prophecy, the companion-piece precisely of
that in chapter 2: 44,
viz., “And the kingdom, and the
Sultanate, and the greatness of the
kingdom underneath all heavens, shall be
given to the people of the saints of the Most High, whose
kingdom is an
everlasting kingdom, and all Sultanates
shall serve and obey Him” (7: 27).
Here, the “kingdom”
is set up ON
EARTH by the “God of heaven,”
second coming of the Son of Man in the clouds, to destroy the last
and demolish all gentile politics and power.
is found the much-despised “Chiliasm” (Pre-millennialism),
indestructible as the truth and throne of God! As face answers to face in
water so Dan. 7: 27
answers to Dan.
2: 44, an invulnerable demonstration that the
and solemn as is this vision, it is not, however,
a vision of the last judgment which occurs at the close of the
and brings the “new heaven and
is the Messianic judgment, placed by all the prophets at the end of our
age, when Gentile Times expire and new-born
The Time of the Judgment.
It is at the “end” of the 70th week in Dan. 9: 26, 27, the close of the Times of the Gentiles, the end of the last 1260 days of Antichrist’s persecuting reign as lord of ten monarchies in one, and the holder of Jerusalem, yet coming quickly to his own “end” with none to help him. Dan. 11: 45; Zech. 14: 1-5; Rev. 14: 14-20; 19: 11-21. It closes the horn’s career, Dan. 7: 21, 22. The final conflict terminated by this judgment includes the “Day of the Lord upon all nations,” preceded by that final spell when the powers that be and society at large, as in Noah’s day, shall be intent on architecture commerce, trade and all domestic pleasure, singing the siren song of “Peace and Safety,” as did the false prophets of old, unconscious that “sudden destruction” is near. 1 Thess. 5: 3; Jer. 8: 11, 15, 16; 14: 13; 23: 17-30. That will be the Concert of Europe and the world! The political hypocrisy of the time will betray itself in this, that while affecting arbitration of international disputes, new ambitions, new international complications, and new oppressions and aggressions will be devised, the whole world arming for war. Joel 13: 9-11. The alliances of Christian governments with those that are anti-Christian, for the sake of gain, the extension of territory, wealth and power, the oppression of the weak by the strong, the spectacle of massacre allowed by Christian nations, the hollowness, the treachery to treaties and to covenants, the concert of Christian powers in a code of international authority, founded neither on the principles of justice nor of humanity, but on the will of the strongest, and violated in the interests of the strongest, will so affect, disgust and exasperate mankind, that, once more, as in the days of Robespierre and Voltaire, Christianity itself will be scouted in the circles of the learned, and by the masses, and the very foundations of civil, social and religious order be broken up. Protestism can no more accuse Popery. At such a time the “Little Horn” will come, and run his career unchecked by anything “withholding,” 2 Thess. 2: 6-12, till checked by the counter-coming of the Son of Man. That second coming is the glorious, visible and public Parousia of Christ – His appearing in the clouds of heaven, as the vision shows, for both judgment and salvation, its one time-point, the close of the Great Tribulation. It is the same time-point as in Matthew 24: 29, 31; 40 - 44; 25: 1; 2 Thess. 1: 6, 7; 2: 1 - 8; Rev. 11: 15 - 17; 19: 11 - 21, and prior to which heaven receives and retains Him in His Father’s throne. Acts 3: 19-21, (R.V.) It is the high-point in the “Day of the Lord” which begins before the Advent and continues after it, the Day “in the which” the Lord comes, and not before it: Matt. 24: 42, 44, 50; Luke 12: 39, 46; 17: 30; Acts 17: 31; Rom. 2: 16; 2 Thess. 1: 10; 2 Tim. 1: 18., as in all prophecy, so here, Judgment and salvation go together, “as it was in the days of Noah,” and “of Lot,” and the “coming out of Egypt.”
New Testament fills in the details
unmentioned in Daniel’s vision, viz., those of international war and
kingdoms will have
prepared for themselves the instruments of their own destruction. The logic of the situation
caused already an effect to reintergrate the jarring nations into one
empire, as the best solution of the problem of government, a
from Christianity and bound alone to a religion of humanity, in which
world’s last leader will be the chief object of worship, the
world’s new Messiah. The
temporary realization of that scheme with all its wickedness, will
last heaving of the nations and call into being the “Day of the Lord.” Supernatural terrors will
break in on
the new order of things, more void of order than all preceding times. “Heaven, earth,
sea and the dry land will be shaken,” Hagg.
2: 6, 7. It
will be a time
of tribulation and anguish, of slaughter and gloom, and of persecution
God’s saints, a time when the sickle, the flail, the fan, and the fire,
will do their work, a time when the harvest is ripe, and the vintage so
that the vats overflow, “because
is great.” Joel 3: 13.
The struggle for supremacy will bring the “War of the Great Day of God Almighty,”
Rev. 16: 14,
when the horn prevails against the saints
and seeks to build his new empire on the destruction of all
human governments, and on the extirpation of the Jews.
To that, the kingdoms of this world will
come, till the Lord comes to destroy their power.
Then, what Daniel saw in vision will
become a fact in history, the nations gathered together against
2. The Place of the judgment.
far as the “thrones”
are concerned (7: 9),
it is aerial, in
stormy and fire-lit clouds, overhanging the earth, and visible to all. “The
heavens declare His righteousness, for God Himself is Judge.” Ps. 1: 6. The diurnal rotation of
the planet on
its axis will make the visibility a universal necessity, “Every eye shall see Him.” Rev. 1: 7. But, so far as the special
vision of Daniel 7
has to do with the destruction of the
Antichrist and his empire, and
3. The Parties in the Judgment.
mentioned in general, it is necessary
still to speak of them in particular.
They are (1) the Fourth Beast, (2) the Ten Horns of
Kingdoms, (3) the
Little Horn, (4) the Ancient of Days, (5) the Angels, (6) the Son of
the Saints of the Most High, or the people of the Saints of the Most
High. With the New
Testament development of
this vision by our Lord, in His assignment of the Christian church to
to the “Fourth
Beast,” a word will suffice.
Everything said previously concerning the fourth empire is
applicable. It is
As to the “Ten Horns.” Everything said previously concerning the “Ten Toes” is applicable here, since both are identical. They are neither ten Ptolemies, nor ten Seleucids, the successors of Alexander, nor ten Caesars, nor ten provincial governors of the empire of Nero’s time, but are ten separate, independent and contemporaneous kingdoms with their kings, in Europe, Asia and Africa, formed within the limits of the old Roman territory, East and West, in the last days of their existence. Nevertheless, it is one of the most remarkable phenomena in all history, that, for 1,300 years, last past, twenty-six catalogues of the kingdoms formed in the Western empire, each catalogue covering a half century, show the number “ten” as that to which these kingdoms, as imperial powers, have, with few exceptions, uniformly gravitated. While this is true, and true to-day, that Great Britain (including Egypt), part of Germany, France, Spain, Portugal, Austro-Hungary, Italy, Greece, Turkey, and part of Russia, occupy the territory of the old empire, yet good reasons exist for holding that a further distribution will be made, by the sword or by diplomacy, in the time of the “end.”
these are the facts (1) that the ten toes
are identical with the horns, and both with the ten horns in the
John; (2) that the toes, therefore the horns, lie not in the western
of the empire alone, but in the eastern as well; (3) that in John they
discrowned, quasi-kings, whose power has gone to the Beast for a time
special purpose, i.e., Rome’s destruction; (4) the impossibility of
showing, how, which of all the kingdoms of Europe, Asia and Africa the
ten will be. Concede
and Prescentism all they affirmatively claim and can demonstrate
history: that Nero was an Antichrist, the Pope another, the one a
other an ecclesiastic, and also, that, while the Papacy is Western
Islam is Eastern, the one ruling as “Vicar of Christ,” the other as
“the Shadow of God,” still to Futurism must be allowed the
unconquerable answer that the harlot, Rome, the horns and little horn,
till Christ comes to destroy them, and the Jews wage their last
the last Antichrist, in times immediately preceding the second advent. Therefore, the final
distribution of the
kingdoms is still before us.
Remarkable is the statement of Hippolytus,
is worthy of note that one of the types
of the last Antichrist (Antiochus) rose out of
territory now occupied by the king of Italy.
The dividing line, between East and
West, ran ideally, north and south, through
4. The Duration of the Judgment.
This is nowhere defined in the Scriptures, unless we take the close of the Great Tribulation or end of the 1260 days of the horn’s career as its commencing point, and the close of the 1335 days, as its concluding point: Dan. 7: 25; 12: 12. Two months and a half exhaust the period. In a wide sense the “Day of the Lord” which begins before the advent and continues after it, is called a “Day of Judgment,” and during it the last Seals are opened, the Trumpets sounded and the Vials poured with all their terrible phenomena. But the final judgment on the Horn and his allies, and the final stroke on all Gentile politics and power begins with the Advent itself, and must close before the “Blessed” time. Swift and severe, it will be a “short work in righteousness,” shaking together “heaven, earth, sea, dry land and all nations” (Hagg. 2: 6, 7; Heb. 12: 26, 29), for the Lord will “finish the work and cut it short in righteousness; because a short work will the Lord make upon the earth,” Rom. 9: 28 – “sudden destruction,” 1 Thess. 5: 3. The supernatural phenomena which precede, increase, intensify and melt into the “Day of the Lord,” will reach their culmination with the Advent itself. And, as Zechariah informs us, Joshua’s long day – “neither day nor night” – will be repeated in the final crisis. Zech. 14: 6, 7. The kingdom of the Horn will be “consumed and destroyed unto the end.” Dan. 7: 26.
The solemn thing here is that the “ten horns” are all Christian kingdoms which have become politically, in their governments, apostate from Christianity, and represent a civilization of culture and mammon, and a policy of crime at war with moral righteousness. They are the “Powers” of a hard-hearted military Christendom, politically de-Christianized, the very “horns” in John’s apocalypse and, in their last state, allies of the Antichrist in the persecution of God’s saints. And so much an outcome present signs are not wanting. The championship, by Christian governments, of anti-Christianity, even of an empire historically organized to shed Christian blood; the championship of a power whose chief sits at the Golden Horn as the “Shadow of God,” “Lord of two continents,” and “Kings of Kings,” to whom “Allah” has committed the rule of the world, an Antichrist, a hater of Christians, open rejector of Christ, and the divine and eternal relation of the “Father” and the “Son,” whose ritual is the stated massacre of God’s saints, whose reward for massacre is a sensual paradise, whose alternatives to all mankind are the “Koran of the Sword,” – is enough to make the “fury” of God rise in His face. Since the world began, no greater crime has been committed – save the crucifixion of Christ – than the introduction of this organized anti-Christian power, in 1856, into the family of civilized and Christian nations by the so-called “Christian Powers” themselves, at a cost of 300,000 lives and 300,000,000 of money, and in the face of gigantic massacres whose atrocities made the blood of mankind run cold. And all the more unutterably guilty have been the “Powers” since the subsequent massacres in 1860, 1876 and 1894-1897, in south-eastern Europe, Crete, Greece, Armenia, with the slaughter of 130, 000 Christians, and a total since 1822 of 162,000, and the destruction of the homes of 1,000,000 sufferers, and the agonies, tortures and dishonour of mothers, daughters and babes, have been allowed by the “Powers” to pass un-avenged – Russia now consenting – all the “Christian Powers” shelling with their fleets (1897) defenceless Christian fighting to secure their freedom from the Turks! Immeasurable, save by God Himself, is the unforgotten crime of Christendom, since, shamelessly as openly, by “concert of the Powers” the championship of the “integrity of the Ottoman Empire” is justified by the doctrine of the “Balance of Power,” the “Peace of Europe,” the “Interests of Bondholders,” and the “Necessities of Commerce and Trade,” in short, “Business Interests” which England’s Premier has told the world are “paramount to mere religious feeling and to all considerations of mere humanitarian sentiment!” A compact such as this, by the so-called “Christian governments” of Europe, which hereby prove themselves to be a federation of stock-jobbing companies of royal birth, intermarried, wearing crowns on their heads and backed by the standing armies and fleets, ruling the world, is enough to excite universal anarchy and revolution, and is a challenge to God to vindicate His Word.
These lines are not forgetful of Papal massacres in history, outstripping far the pagan. Not do they decide the question whether the last anti-Christian “Horn” shall be an apostate Pope as many have supposed, or a Sultan as still others think, or “some other man.” It is enough that the “Ten Horns” have already been formed, though not in their final arrangement. The “what withholdeth” or “hinders” the appearing of the last Antichrist in God’s counsel, is the politically organized Gentile power, or combination of civil powers professedly Christian, ordained of God “not to bear the sword in vain,” but to execute justice, to repress crime, conserve in righteousness the civil and social order, and promote the triumph of the kingdom of God. False to this high trust, their right of existence is forfeited. When once it is evident that these “Powers” are instruments of oppression and persecution, leagued to promote injustice, despotism, inhumanity, and every evil work in the name of Christianity, and bent chiefly on self-aggrandizement, increase of commerce, trade, wealth, extent on territory, and supremacy each over the other, the result can only be an insurrection of the more and more educated masses, a reaction against both Christianity and the civil order, and an explosion of universal revolution. It is then the “foundations will be destroyed,” the “let” removed, and the last Antichrist appear. Christendom will be responsible for it, and the penalty of her treason against the law of God, the Gospel of Christ, and the common principles of natural justice, will be the righteous annihilation of all Gentile politics and power, in the midst of unparalleled tribulation and distress. It is the lesson of the book of Daniel, as of all the prophets, and of John’s apocalypse. It is, moreover, the very word of Christ. To modern rulers thus leagued, under the common sceptre of mammon, and to all the world’s financial strength, God has said, “Your covenant with death shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand.” Isa. 28: 18. As a party in the judgment the kingdom and marching to their last division and their doom, and calling for their last leader. The “Horns” need a master and will find one “in the time appointed.”
“Bondholders” hungering after “dividends,” and the Governments in partnership with them as their police, must reckon with Him to whom God will “divide” a portion with the great, and he will “divide” the spoil with the strong, and the last “Concert of Europe,” when the “kings and princes, and the chief captains, and the rich, and the strong” shall invoke the rocks and the mountains to “fall” on them and hide them “from the face of Him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb.” Rev. 6: 15-17. Broken shall be the whole “commercial system” of the world, now ruling all governments and nations. Ezek. 27: 1-36; Rev. 18: 1-24; Isa. 24: 1-2. Then the Horn will be judged, and the colossus become “as the chaff of the summer threshing floor.” A NEW AGE will heave into history, and the “Kingdom” come. Truth will spring out of the earth and Righteousness look down from heaven, and HERE ON THIS PRESENT EARTH, as in heaven, God’s will shall be done. It is the vision we have been considering, and the Vision is true, and the interpretation sure.
“When the Son of Man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, THEN shall He sit upon the throne of His glory; and before Him shall be gathered all the nations; and He shall separate them from one another as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And He shall set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on His left. … Then shall He say to them on His right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father; inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. … Inasmuch as ye did it unto one of these my brethren, even the least, ye did it unto me. … Then shall He say unto them on the left hand, Depart ye cursed into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels. … Inasmuch as ye did it not unto one of these least, ye did it not unto me. And these (on the left) shall go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous (shall come) into life everlasting.”
- Our Lord.
(Daniel, Chapter 7 continued. – The Little Horn; His Names; The Great Tribulation; Witness-bearing; The Ancient of Days; The Judges in the Judgment; Angels; Books Opened; Complete Retribution; The Son of Man; Efforts to evade the Chiliastic Doctrine of the Book; The Monarch of the Fifth Empire; the Kingdom and the People of the Saints.)
to the “Little
Horn,” in 7:
8, 11, 20, 21-26,
it is evident that he is the chief party among all the criminals
the judgment. Like
the rest, he is
a king, the head of a kingdom, both symbolized in one.
Bad as the rest have been, this one is
worse, transcending them all in his crimes.
The hostility of all the ancient empires
The different names under which he is known are many. He is “the prince that shall come on wing of abomination, a desolater,” 9: 26; the concluder of a treaty or “covenant” with the masses of the Jewish people, for “one week,” and breaker of the same, permitting their ancient worship, then causing it to cease in the middle of the week, 9: 27; one who set up “the abomination” that causes desolation, foretold by our Lord, Matt. 24: 15; “that wicked” in Isa. 11: 4; the “enemy that invades like a flood,” Isa. 59: 19, and whose end is in the “overflowing,” Dan. 9: 26, 27; he is “the King” who comes to his end at Jerusalem with “none to help him,” Dan. 11: 36, 45; he is Paul’s “man of sin,” to whom the apostle applied the title given by the Maccabees to his prototype – “sinful man,” a “root of sin,” 1 Macc. 1: 10; 2: 62; 2 Thess. 2: 3. He is “the Antichrist” of John, 1 John 2: 18; the personal “beast” that “ascends out of the bottomless pit,” wars with the saints and slays the “two witnesses” of Christ, Rev. 11: 7; “Apollyon,” the destroyer, Rev. 9: 11; the “beast” in Rev. 13: 5, to whom Satan gives his “power, throne and great authority;” a mysterious person, of whom it is said that he once “was” on this earth, but “is not” now, yet “shall ascend out of the abyss,” “be present,” then “go into perdition,” Rev. 17: 18, a very “son of perdition;” a “lawless one,” whose coming is with all the “energy of Satan,” and “with signs and lying wonders, and with all deceit of unrighteousness for them that perish,” teaching “the lie” that both Christ and Christianity are a fraud, 2 Thess. 2: 9-12, and whom “the Lord Jesus shall slay with the breath of His mouth, and destroy with the brightness of His coming,” 2 Thess. 2: 8. as by plucking up “three” of the Ten Horns, he thereby became “an eighth,” so is he described again as “an eighth” in Rev. 17: 11, one who stand out above all his fellows in bad pre-eminence, as not only a “Beast” and a “Devil,” but as a “god,” sitting “in the temple of God” in Jerusalem, “showing himself that he is god,” the self-exalting “opposer” of God, 2 Thess. 2: 4; Dan. 8: 11; 11: 36, but is a “Man” whose secular and anti-Sabbatic monogram is “666,” the “number of his name,” Rev. 13: 18. Such the “Little Horn” Daniel saw in vision – a satanic re-appearing military leader, atheist, antichrist and supreme imperial ruler of the last times, in whom, by consent of the Horns, is vested the whole power of apostate governments in Europe, Asia and Africa, within the limits of the old Roman territory; himself and his allies the destroyers of Rome, Rev. 17: 12-18, and whose last campaign, following Rome’s destruction, is his vision of the Holy Land where he comes to his end, Dan. 11: 40-45; Rev. 19: 11-21.
complete will be the retribution, unto ages
of ages. There is
an eternity in
justice, and the protest of right against wrong, of innocence and
against oppression, and the call for a long-delayed satisfaction, are
immortal. No law or
exempts from doom the nominally Christian yet actually de-Christianized
and governments of the earth. It
not impossible that the Horn and his hosts shall be victorious in the “War of the Great Day of God Almighty.” Such victory would be out
with the epoch of Judgment, the law of righteousness, the destiny of
Horn is the Hero of the “Great
Tribulation” foretold not only in Daniel, 7: 25; 12: 2,
but also by Moses, Deut.
32: 36-43; Balaam, Numb.
24: 23, Isaiah, 26: 12-21, Jeremiah, 30: 7, our Lord, Matt. 24: 15-21 (and
parallels), by Paul, 2
Thess. 1: 6, 7; 2: 8-12; and fully pictured by
John, Rev. 3: 8, 9; 6:
9-11; 7: 14; 11: 2, 7; 12:
6, 12, 14, 17; 13: 1-18; 14: 12; 20: 4.
It will be a tribulation sorer than any yet
preceding under Manasseh, Antiochus, Nero, the Caliphs and Popes, or
modern days, a time of world-wide trial and sore temptation for the
God, a time of suffering, death and martyrdom of Jesus’ sake, a time
“such as never was since there
was a nation, even
to that same time,” Dan.
“such as never was since the
beginning of the
world, no, nor ever shall be,” Matt.
24: 21. By
expressions, so indescribably solemn, and full of faithful warning, we
the unparalleled importance of this epoch for the
God’s true people everywhere will be called to their best witness-bearing and most honoured trial of their patience [perseverance] and faith in behalf of Christ. Intensity of suffering, however, will not avail to divert them from their fidelity. As in the Manasseh’s day, in Maccabean times, in Nero’s day, in Moslem and Papal times, and as in Bulgarian, Armenian and Cretan times, so, once more, will their steadfast love, their endurance and martyrdom only prove that He who calls them to such a trial has “COUNTED THEM WORTHY OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD,” 2 Thess. 1: 5. The patriot’s consecration of his life as an offering on the altar of his country will be more than supposed by that ardour of love for Christ which will made His saints “rejoice” even to be “killed all the day long” for His sake, and to “glory in tribulation,” Rom. 8: 36. “Here is the patience of the saints.” “Here are they who keep the commandments of God” in opposition to the orders, and “hold fast the testimony of Jesus” in opposition to “the lie,” of the Antichrist, Rev. 12: 17; 13: 10’ 14: 12. Divine grace supports their souls with strength according to their day, and confirms thief faith by rich promises of glory and honour MADE TO THE OVERCOMER, by the example of Christ, the memories of the past, the sealing of the Spirit, the election of God and the certain knowledge that the Coming of the Lord is near. The sweetest of all the notes they will sing is this:-
“Oh, what, if we are Christ’s,
Is earthly shame or loss?
Bright shall the crown of glory be
When we have borne the cross.”
to the “Ancient
of Days,” literally “One
respect of Days,” older than all the late-made gods of the
heathen, transcending all time, He is “Jehovah”
Himself, the Eternal, in the absolute Unity of His essence, God. It is He, according to Old
representation, who constitutes the Judgment (1) by descending from
earth, (2) by placing the thrones, (3) by seating the judges upon them,
opening the books. The
garment denotes His majesty, rank, holiness, righteousness; the white
antiquity, even Eternity; the throne of enveloping flame His avenging
the revolving wheels of fire the rapidity of His advancing judgments,
stream of radiating flame the persistence of His judicial activity till
strange work is done. It
He “did sit,” but
only after He
9, 22. This
is of first
importance for the interpretation, as we shall presently see. It is not needful to say
“Ancient of Days”
came “in clouds”
since that is the Old Testament view
of the descent of Jehovah to judge the nations and His people. He is always spoken of as “coming down” in glorious
epiphany with fire-flame and “in
and attended by “angels,”
Exod. 19: 16; Ps. 47:6;
Zech. 9: 14; Isa. 27: 13; Exod.
3: 2; 19: 18. “He bowed the heavens also and came down,”
Ps. 18: 9-15.
“He came down on
to the Judges who sit on the thrones, the
vision is silent, because the New Testament church was not yet a fact
history, although there is enough in the Old Testament, elsewhere, to
who some of the Judges are, Ps.
1: 5. It
is in the New Testament, however, we
learn without mistake who the co-assessors are.
In the Revelation to John which develops
the Judgment-Scene in Daniel, the Second Coming of Christ is placed
Seventh Trumpet and after the Sixth Vial, at which time the RESURRECTION OF THE HOLY DEAD occurs, Rev. 11: 15-17; 16: 15, 16,
therefore before the
judgment upon the Antichrist, the Beast.
It is immediately before the final slaughter in the
As to the Angels, the whole angelic world is here as “executors” of the Judgment by the Son of Man, Jude 14, 15. Their innumerable number is given as “10,000 times 10,000 and thousands of thousands,” Dan. 7: 10; at the very least 204,000,000, but more, since the extent of the multiplication is impossible, “a multitude that no man can number,” Rev. 5: 11; 7: 9; Heb. 12: 22, because of the indefinite terms “thousands of thousands.” All these, seen standing before the throne, wait on the “Ancient of Days” to minister judgment on the allied millions of the “Horn,” “angels of might,” 2 Thess. 1: 7. Already they have reaped the righteous - [i.e., not referring to the imputed righteous of Christ, but to those whose behaviour is deemed by Christ to be righteous, (Matt. 5: 20; 1 Thess. 4: 17. cf. 2 Cor. 2: 17)]- and now they stand ready to reap the wicked, and “take out of the kingdom all things that offend and them that do iniquity,” Matt. 13: 41. Gabriel is there, and Michael is there, erect for Israel in the last crisis, Dan. 12: 2; Rev. 12: 7, and Raphael, Israfil, Ithuriel and Uriel standing in front of the light of the sun, Rev. 19: 17. Over against the wailing concert of Europe the embattled hosts of God will stand, ready to make the last charge with “lightenings and thunders,” “hailstones a talent’s weight,” “snares, fire, brimstone and a horrible tempest, the portion of the wicked,” and turning the swords of the wicked “against themselves,” will approve the righteous judgment of God. Solemnly they will intone the words, “Righteous art Thou, O Lord, who wast and shall be, because Thou hast thus judged; for they have shed the blood of saints and of prophets, and Thou has given them blood to drink!” Rev. 16: 5, 6. “Fowls of the air, come, gather yourselves together to the great supper of the great God, that ye may eat the flesh of kings and of captains, of mighty men, of horses and riders, free and bond, small and great!” Rev. 19: 17, 18. This apostate Christendom’s cup! – blood for blood, massacre for massacre, the righteous judgment of God, the end forever of bloodshed and war!
The solemnity of the scene is augmented by the fact that “the Books were opened,” Dan. 7: 10. These “Books” are the records of the crimes of the Horn, the Beast and his allies, the sins of the ten confederate kingdoms of the last times in Europe, Asia and Africa, and the sins of which they are heirs at law, the sins of misgovernment, the sins committed against the saints of God. Wherever else the judgment will strike so far as this particular scenes is concerned, it strikes the nations of Christendom within the limits of the old Roman territory ruled by the Horn. They are the records of the living nations, of the kings, judges and rulers of the earth, Ps. 2: 10, who have taken counsel against the Lord and His Anointed, Ps. 2: 2, - the books, papers, files of their Gentile cabinets, their concert and their ruptures, their treaties and diplomacies, their guilty apathy, procrastination and venality when action was demanded in vindication of the right, their deeds, words, joint-notes, protocols and scheming policies, the motives of all supporting or opposed to the Horn. They are the archives, angel-kept, wherein are registered the noon-day iniquities and secret midnight work and devices of the “powers,” whose conduct paved the way for the “Great Tribulation,” and made imperative a judgment to punish, in order to save, the nations and rescue the kingdom of God from extinction. The whole history of the Last Times is here: the encouragement of anti-Christianity for the sake of gain, the coalition of Christian governments with the guilds of Mammon against justice, truth, religion, humanity and liberty; their covenants made and broken; their rivalries and envies, highway robbery and rapacity, their greed of gold and lust of supremacy; their defiance of Christian sentiment and of every appeal to virtue; their despotism, pride, misgovernment, duplicity, oppression of the weak and guilty trade with the strong, - and most of all, their shedding of innocent blood. All are here recorded with a pen unerring. No injustice is forgotten, no massacre of devastated homes, no crimsoned fields strewn with the unturned faces of the dead. Nor is the name of one who took part in producing such scenes, or consented to the wrongs that begat them, misspelled, or the place of his residence misread. The whole apostasy of Christendom, the Horn’s loud-mouthed arrogance and the words of the cry, “We will not have this Man to reign over us,” are written in the “Books,”* and judgment by the records must pass on the kingdoms whose boast was their Christianity, culture, civilization. Such the solemn scrutiny.
[* Note. “Books,” in this context and at this time, are not the same as the “Books” which will be opened at the end of the Kingdom Age, and at the time of the Great White Throne Judgment: Rev. 20: 12.]
Our Lord’s description of the separation of the nations gathered against Jerusalem, and the decision that fixes the destiny of their individuals, according to their conduct toward converted Israel in the tribulation, leaves little doubt that the “throne of His glory” at that time will overhang the Mount of Olivet, facing Jerusalem, where the delivered Jews will be gathered nearest to Himself. Geographically, northward toward the mountains, on the right, the “righteous,” while southward, on the left, through the valleys of Hinnom and Jehosaphat. The scene in Matt. 25: 31-46, is but the development of the scenes in Joel 3: 12-17; Zech. 14: 1-5.
[ Sub-title, ‘Effort to Evade the Chiliastic Doctrine of the Book.’.]
to the “Son of
Man” (Bar Enash), to whom the “Ancient
of Days” commits this judgment, modern criticism has
show that the expression, “One
like a Son of Man,”
imports no more than a figure of speech, “personified Israel,” or
“the personified people of the Saints”; at best the abstract
“Idea” that the kingdom of the Saints will be humane in contrast
with the beastly kingdom of the Horn.
By such means the doctrine of the literal, personal Advent
of Christ to
gather His saints, redeem Israel, destroy the Antichrist, judge the
introduce the millennial age, is sought to be set aside, and His Second
declared a spiritual one, already a fact in history.
This dust is easily swept away.
The word “like”
in no way denies a proper personality, but simply states in what form
object seen in the vision appeared to the Seer. So
the Chaldean king saw “four men”
walking in the furnace, and “the
form of the fourth was like to a Son of God,”
Dan. 3: 25. In the one a human, in the
superhuman of Divine personality is seen, and these two are one. Our Lord’s identification
Himself under the most solemn adjuration before the supreme council of
nation, with the “Son of Man”
this vision, and as “coming in
the clouds of
26: 63-67, and
again as the “Son of Man,”
the “Father hath committed all
John 5: 22, 23,
and the whole New Testament
use of this phrase when dealing with the “Last
16: 27; 24: 30, 31; 26:
64; Acts 1: 9-11; Rev. 1: 7; 14: 14, rebukes sufficiently
on the vision which is the Old Testament source of the title. The Glorious Person who
appears in the
scene is none other than the Son of Mary, Son of David, Son of Abraham,
Incarnate, crucified exalted
Sanhedrin and the whole Jewish nation so
understood it. Before
the Lord made
use of the title the “Book of
Enoch” called Messiah “Bar Anani,” the “Son of a
Cloud.” The Targum of Jonathan called Him
“Bar Nibli,” the “Son of a Cloud.”
said, the “Son of Man in the clouds is Messiah our
question, who is Bar Enash (the Son of Man), Rabbi
Simeon answered, “He is Messiah of whom it is said, He
came with the clouds of heaven.”
It was to Him, a frail man, yet begotten by the Holy Ghost
and born of a
virgin, Jehovah said, “Sit thou
at my right hand,”
Ps. 110: 1. David’s Son was David’s
Lord, God and Man, two natures on One Person forever!
It is He who comes to judge the Horn,
the nations and the world, and deliver
have undertaken to show
that the Judgment-Scene here “has nothing to do with the Second
Advent,” They take
stand on the preposition “to”
in the verse, “One like a Son of
Man came with
the clouds of heaven, and came to
the Ancient of Days, and they (the clouds)
brought him near before Him,” 7: 13,
and maintain that what is here meant is the Ascension of Christ in
clouds “to” the
Father at the close
of His First Advent and ministry.
By this means it is hoped to destroy “the doctrine of the
pre-millennial coming of Christ.”
It is clearly seen that the “Kingdom,”
as predicted, comes to victory ON
THE EARTH and is given to the Son, Dan. 7: 14,
and the Saints, 7: 27,
only AFTER the
Son has “come with the clouds of
heaven,” and that, if by
this coming the Second Advent is meant, the doctrine of the
advent of Christ is irrefutable as the word of God.
The effort, therefore, is to show that
the expression, “came to the
Ancient of Days,”
is meant the Ascension
we have here, therefore, is the glorious [Messianic]
King of the
to the last party named in the
Judgment-Scene, they are called the “Saints,”
with whom the Horn “makes war,”
7: 21, 25, the “Saints
of the Most High” who receive the kingdom, and “possess the kingdom forever, even for
ever and ever,”
7: 18, 22, the “People of the Saints of the Most High,”
is given the kingdom and the greatness of the kingdom, not in a
or celestial sphere, but “underneath all heavens,”
Incontrovertibly, these are Daniel’s people, the Jews,
the Horn has invaded, and who have suffered under Antichrist during the
Tribulation. It is
the prophet foretells, their relation to the world-power from the time
captivity till the Son of Man comes.
For them, pre-eminently, this Old Testament apocalypse was
forecasting their sinful and weary way, and the glorious end of the
God, 12: 1. They are New-Born Israel
of the last
when the Son of
Man comes, the converts from apostasy in Jacob, saith the Lord, Isa. 59: 20; Rom. 11: 26. Their holy dead have
raised up from their tombs, and made co-assessors with Christ on His [millennial] throne. To the holy living,
God’s counsel to be the local and sustaining centre of the Messianic
Kingdom in victory on the earth, and whose “representation”
is to be as “life from the dead”
the nations, Rom. 11: 15,
and their “fullness”
the greater “riches to the
Gentiles,” and answered for their
this has ever been the one interpretation of
the best Hebrew Doctors in all ages of the world.
will come,” said David
Kimchi, “when Jacob shall prosper and be redeemed and
now he is scattered and is very low, and a wonder to the nations. When the nations are
we turn to that beautiful scene of
the Sun-clothed Woman in Rev.
12: 1-6, the
“Allah! perchance the secret word might spell;
If Allah be, He keeps His secret well.
What He has hidden, can we hope to find?
Shall God His secret to a maggot tell?
The Koran! Well, just put me to the test;
Lovely old book, although in error drest,
Believe me, I can quote the Koran too;
The unbeliever knows the Koran best.
And do you think that unto such as you,
A maggot-minded, starved, fanatic crew,
God tells the secret, and denies it me?
Well, well, what matters it, believe that too.”
- Omar Khayyam.
(Daniel, Chapter 8. – “Time of the End” of the Third Empire; The Kingdom not mentioned; Date of the Vision; Place of the Vision; The Vision itself; The Eastern Question; The Ram and Rough Goat; Cyrus and Alexander; Antiochus Epiphanes; Vision of Horror at Jerusalem; Angelic Dialogue; Apparition of a Man; The 2300 Evening-mornings; Interpretation of the Vision; Time of Fulfilment Vain Efforts to identify the two Little Horns,; Similarities and Dissimilarities; Grounds of the same; Purpose of the Vision.)
DANIEL, CHAPTER 8. – THE EASTERN QUESTION. RAM AND GOAT.
striking proof of the truth of our thesis, viz., that the
As chapter 7
was supplementary to chapter
2, so chapter 8
is supplementary to both. Great
space was given to the affairs of
the fourth empire, the Roman, in chapter
and chapter 7,
while only four verses had
been given in both to the second and third empires (2:
32, 39; 7: 5, 6), the Persian and Grecian.
The vision, therefore, in chapter
8, treats more largely of these, yet
rapidly runs over them in order to reach the “Little
Horn” of the third.
Hence forth the whole interest of the book of Daniel
Messiah and His relation to those Two Horns, and to the Jews. As the Horn in chapter
7 is the last Gentile oppressor of
1. As to the Date of the vision.
It is in “the third year of the reign of the King Belshazzar,” 8: 1. Assuming that Belshazzar is the “Bel-sar-usur” of the monuments, and according to Oriental usage, a “King,” the date of the vision is B.C.538, the year of Babylon’s fall and of his feast, 5: 1-30, the first year of Darius, the Mede, to whom Cyrus had given the rule over Babylon, the year when Daniel was thrown to the lions’ “Den,” the second year before the edict of Cyrus, B.C.536, releasing the Jews, sixty-eight of the seventy years of the captivity having passed away.
2 As to the Place of the vision.
prophet, though bodily in
3 The Vision Itself.
is no less than that of the “Eastern
Question,” a vision of confliction civilizations, the Asiatic and
European struggling for the mastery of the
Lifting his eyes, entranced, the prophet sees the two-horned Ram standing in front of the Ulai on its opposite side, the horns of unequal height, the highest nearest the stream, denoting the superiority of the Persian over the Median element in the Medo-Persian empire of Cyrus. The duality of the dynasties is merged in the unity of the empire. The Ram’s motion indicates the conquest of the whole Medo-Persian succession, for two hundred years. Invincibly the Ram butts westward, towards Babylonia, Lydia, Asia Minor and Greece; nothward toward Armenia, the Caspian, Bactria, Scythia; southward toward Egypt, Lybia and Ethiopia, 8: 4. A bounding goat with projecting horn, intraocular, comes leaping from the West, and with unexampled speed skipping across the face of the earth, as if spurning the ground, rushes with irresistible and mad onset into the Ram, breaking his horns, casting him down, stamping upon him; no allies able to save him out of the goat’s power. That “Notable Horn” is young Alexander, first king of the Graeco-Macedonian empire, but twenty years of age, whose first leap at the Ram was across the Hellespont, B.C.334, with 40,000 men, and whose rapidly-fought battles from the Granicus, 334, to the Arbela, 331, thence to the banks of the Indus and the Nile, thence again to Shushan, 325, and dying at Babylon, 323, broke the horns of the Ram, cast him dawn, stamped on him, paid him in full for his invasion of Greece, and ended forever the Medo-Persian empire. “Notable Horn!” In the words of Napoleon, “Alexander deserves all the glory the world has given him,” By such symbols the Holy Spirit foretold the fortunes of the Persian and Greek empires.
the prophet is gazing he sees a notable
reads therein the
premature death of Alexander, and beholds the “four
notable horns” rising in its place, towards the four
points of the
compass. They are
the four kingdoms
into which Alexander’s empire was parted,
vision presents to the eye of the prophet a
scene of sacrilegious horror enacted in the temple-court and city of
an attempt to exterminate the holy people and the religion of Jehovah,
substitute for both a heathen colony and the Greek idolatry; the first
ever made in history to force a people to forswear their faith, or
for disobedience. The
insolence of the Horn was, till then, without a parallel. Other conquerors of the
Jews had, at
least, respected their religion.
This one had no respect.
Nebuchadnezzar, Cyrus and Alexander, paid homage to “God, Most High,” and bowed
before the holy
oracles. This one
pays none, and
tramples the “Truth”
egotism he invades the Holy Land, and raging in hate against the Holy
4 The Angelic Dialogue.
While the prophet was gazing at the horror, suddenly he hears “One Holy One speaking, and another Holy One saying to the Certain Holy One,” as yet unknown – “Palmoni,” or “Peloni Almoni,” that “Some One or Other,” a “Wonderful Numberer” – “How long the vision of the Daily, and the transgression of the desolation, giving both the sanctuary and the Host to be trodden down?” 8: 13. We have here a glimpse into the angel world, which rationalists use to discredit the Book of Daniel as a spurious production, deriving its angelology from the Zoroastrian system with its “Amshaspands,” or fairy beings, analogous to the Sylphs and Fauns of the Greeks! Nothing is more false. The Biblical angels are the “Holy Watchers,” Dan. 4: 13, 17-23; 6: 22; whose vigils remain unbroken, the sleepless sentinels of heaven who take interest in all the affairs of the earth, among whom the Un-slumbering Keeper of Israel presides, Ps. 121: 4. Daniel hears Gabriel asking Palmoni “how long” the horror shall be, Palmoni answering: “Until 2,300 evening-morning; and the Sanctuary shall be justified.” i.e., restored to its lawful use, since so long as profaned it lay under condemnation. The dialogue is evidently meant for the benefit of Daniel, to whom the vision was given. If the “2,300 evening-morning” are whole days, they are six years, four months, twenty days; if half days, the recurring times for morning and evening sacrifice, they ate three years, two months, ten days, the time of the Maccabean tribulation, B.C.168-165, at whose close the sanctuary was “cleansed” by Judas Maccabaeus, and the Jewish worship restored – the death-year of Antiochus being 164.
The Apparition of a
holy prophet is still perplexed. He
betrays his confusion and anxiety to understand
the “meaning” of
what he had
seen. It was not
enough that the
duration of the horror should be determined.
He would know the import of the scene
itself. “I, even I, Daniel, would know the meaning.” The Lord regards his
commands immediate relief. “That Certain Saint,” the “Holy Some One or Other,”
as yet unseen, utters his voice.
With a tone of superior authority and dignity, such as
belongs only to
One made higher than the angels, He bids the questioner in the dialogue
make known the “meaning”
Daniel. If we
really desire to know
the “meaning” of God’s revelation, God will grant our
between the banks of
the Ulai, where hovered the form mysterious above its waters, the order
“Gabriel, make this one to
understand the vision.”
Holy angels are admitted to the secrets
of God, and reveal to mortals His mind.
The prophet, affected by his environment, and overborne by
magnetic power, and weak as a child, passes into a “deep sleep.” The angel “touches” him, imparting
strength to stand erect and receive
the revelation. Gabriel
his closest attention, since the vision relates to the “Time of the End” and God’s “Last Indignation” against
6 The Interpretation of the Vision.
of this has already been anticipated.
First of all, the “Ram”
and the “Goat”
represent the kingdoms and kings if the Medo-Persian and
wmpires, These are
the second and
third, and correspond to the Silver and Brass of the Colossus in chapter 2, and to the
Bear and Leopard (or
Panther) in chapter 7; 8:
20, 21. Here
we have Divine authority against
the rationalism that substitutes wrong empires in the sacred text. We know that the first
empire in the
Colossus is that of
different expressions are used to mark the
time when the vision would be accomplished.
(1) The “Time
of the End,” 8:
17; (2) the
“Last End of the Indignation”
against Israel’s apostasy, 8:
the “Latter Time of their
i.e., the time of the decline of the four kingdoms into which
empire was divided, 8: 23;
(4) “when the transgressors are
come to the full,”
i.e., when Israel’s apostates have filled up the measure of their sins;
(5) “for many days,”
preceding; a long time elapsing between the giving of the vision and
fulfilment. Here is
conclusive that the prophecy was not written in Maccabean times, by a
Jew, but long years previously. 12: 4; 7: 1; 11: 21. The phrase “Time of the End” is a
technical expression in
prophecy, indefinite and general in itself, including (1) a near
fulfilment, and (2) a horizon more remote, as in all typical prophecy. Here, it denotes, first of
at the close
of the third empire in its four-parted state, “the
latter times of the four kingdoms,” when the Jewish
come to its height in pre-Christian times – “many days,” i.e., 370 years
after the date of
the vision. History
has proved the
truth of the prediction. On
other hand, the “Indignation”
technical term in prophecy, denoting God’s judicial wrath against
for their transgression of His covenant, and the “Last End of the Indignation”
that final stroke of punishment
on all apostates from the covenant immediately preceding the final
of the Jews, Deut. 32: 35-43,
and of which
the previous strokes, Isa.
10: 23; 28: 23;
and the Roman destruction of Jerusalem, Rom. 9: 28,
are types. It is
the period of the
Dan. 7: 1; Matt. 24: 21;
Rev. 7: 14; 13: 5. It
is clear, therefore, that not only
was the period B.C.168-165 not the “Last
the Indignation,” since the Jews “filled
up the measure” of their fathers’ sins by crucifying
Matt. 23: 32,
and the “Indignation”
again fell upon their city and upon
themselves, but that, once more, in the far “Time
of the End,” it will fall upon them in the last crisis of
history, 7: 26; 9: 27; 10:
14; 11: 40-45; 12: 1, 7,
the “meaning” of
the prophecy is not limited to the
times of Antiochus, but looks to the close of the last 1, 260 days of
in chapter 7. In this sense, again, the
“for many days.” Every
child of Abraham knows the “meaning”
of the great phrase “the Time of
the End.” It
is the time of the cessation of
false criticism has laboured hard to
identify the two “Little Horns”
of chapter 7
in order to arrest the scope of Daniel’s predictions at B.C.164, and to
deny the Messianic character of the book, and its eschatological value. Vain effort has been made
to equate the
1, 150 days of Antiochus with the 1,260 days of the [last] Antichrist,
and to insert an independent “
deep ground of the
“Similarities” lies in the fact that the Ages and Ends are all
prearranged in the counsel of God, each a mirror in which the other is
and that the World-Power is an organic growth of essentially the same
every age, and producing essentially the same characters at the end of
age, only in higher development. It
lies in the fact that a law of degeneration runs parallel with a law of
improvement, evil ever waxing to its height, coming into closer and
antagonism with the good that seeks to restrain and hem it in. The more energetic the
forces of good,
the more powerful and persistent the aroused and excited forces of
but for the intervention of God, the evil overcoming finally the good. Sharper, and deeper, and
the conflict. Wholly
supernatural power of God is the life of His Kingdom maintained. Its supremacy is not due
science, sociology, never eradicate sin, bind Satan, or remove the
objects that tempt men and nations to aim at self-aggrandizement
justice, truth, humanity and liberty, and the equal rights of the weak
opposed. The moral
the World-Power in its social, civil, political and international
its lust after wealth and supremacy, its opposition to the spirit [or Spirit] and
the truth of God, and its alienation from righteousness, precipitate
struggle between evil and good, and make the dissolution and the “End of the Age” a
necessity, in order to save
the Kingdom of God. And
“Time of the End,”
personalities reappear, according to an ever unerring law of history
nature, like producing like, deepening opposition to God and His
intenser devotion there, the world-kingdoms ever more deaf to the
appeal of the
people of God. And
the nearer the
“End” of any
dispensation, age, or
period, to the “Last End,”
“Similar” to the last Antichrist appears the one that preceded him
– Belshazzar pointing to Haman to Antiochus, Antiochus to
Antichrist. Such is
the law of
development along the ages, and such the grounds of the
“Similarities” between the two Horns.
Only with the ruin of the last, and of
all Gentile politics and powers, come
This vision was given to unveil the future of the Jewish people subsequent to their return from Babylonish exile, to ward apostates and prepare and comfort the faithful in view of the tribulation to come upon them. It is a signal proof of the fidelity, care and compassion of God. Though severe, yet the tribulation should be short, and the outcome as glorious as the conflict was painful. In any case, “the righteous are in the hands of God,” and “their blood is precious in His sight.” The vision is elaborated in chapter 11, where the several campaigns of the Syrian tyrant are exhibited and the grand resistance of the Maccabean heroes is immortalized: a resistance in behalf of the “Truth” and “Covenant” of God, which, with a perfect knowledge of their history, fired the soul of Paul to re-immortalize their deeds, and celebrate their faith as worthy to stand beside the faith of an Abel, Enoch, and Noah, an Abraham and all the patriarchs, a Moses, Joshua and all the Judges, supported alone by the promises of God, and cheered by the HOPE OF THE RESURRECTION [out] FROM THE DEAD. But for this prophecy, the history might have been otherwise. It shows what a power the hope of Messiah’s Second Coming had even with Old Testament saints. And how the example of the Maccabees inspired New Testament believers to witness a good confession, “looking unto Jesus,” the words of Paul suffice to show. They are set forth as an example for us. “They, without us, are not made perfect.”
“The earliest attempt to interpret the seventy weeks was in Maccabean times. Ignorantly, the Two Little Horns and the prince that shall come were identified, and a perverted reckoning was accepted by the Alexandrian amenders of the Septuagint. Both the reckoning and the Septuagint were repelled by the post-Maccabean Palestinian Jews and by the Christian Church which adopted the text of Theodotion. Our Lord’s use of the expression, ‘abomination of desolation,’ Matt. 25: 15, applying to the future times beyond His own day, proves that He interpreted Dan. 9: 26, 27, as a double prophecy, pointing first to the destruction of Jerusalem, and next to the 70th week that closes the Times of the Gentiles. His own prophecy thereby became a double one, and for this reason the admonition is given, ‘Let him that readeth understand.’ Clearly, His mind was resting on all the places in Daniel where the expression, ‘abomination of desolation,’ is used, or the idea is given, viz., Dan. 9: 27; 11: 31; 12: 11; the times of Antiochus being regarded as typical of the last times. Here is seen that law and delay in prophecy and history by which the end of one age becomes the type of another.”
DANIEL, CHAPTER 9. – THE SEVENTY WEEKS.
(Daniel, Chapter 9 – The Seventy Weeks; General Remarks; Place of the Prophecy; Occasion of it; The Prophecy Itself; Its Correct Translation; Covers the Prayer; Exposition of the Seventy Weeks; Their Sub-distribution: The Two Intervals; No Year-day Theory in Daniel; The Seventieth Week; The Four Great Ideas of World-view, World-history, World-judgment and World-chronology; The Interpretation sure; The Secret disclosed; The reasons of the False Interpretation; The Jews as Reckoners of Time; Gentile Confirmation; The Jurisdiction of the Seventy Weeks over all New Testament Prophecy; It fixes absolutely the Time-point of the Second Advent.)
a fourth and
signal confirmation of our thesis, viz., that the
1 As to the Date of the Prophecy.
was “in the
first year of Darius, the son of Ahashuerus of the seed of the Medes,”
9: 1, who was “made king,” by Cyrus, “over the
realm of the Chaldeans,” 9:
and from whom he “received
(not “took”) the kingdom”
2 As to the Place of the Prophecy.
That it was Babylon is clear from the fact that the exiles had not yet been released from captivity, that in this year, under Darius, Daniel was thrown into the Lion’s Den, and that the whole prayer of the prophet assumes his presence in the heathen capital on the banks of the Euphrates, pleading for the restoration.
3 As to the Occasion of the prophecy.
was the fact (1) that Babylon had fallen, (2)
that 68 of the 70 years of the captivity had expired, (3) that Daniel
betaken himself “by prayer and
fasting and sackcloth,” 9:
to plead with God, if so be that He might advance the hour of Israel’s
deliverance, and not delay their release, and (4) that, although he “understood,” from Jeremiah
and the sacred books,
“the number of the years the
accomplish,” even 70, “in
desolations of Jerusalem,” 9: 2,
yet, peradventure, the time might be conditional in God’s purpose, and
even now, end the captivity; all the more since Babylon had already
fallen! He knew
well the enormity
4 The Answer to the Prayer, the Prophecy Itself.
is in the last four verses of the
chapter. It came at
in the afternoon, or “about the
time of the
evening oblation,” 9:
20, 21. At
such a time “Gabriel,”
whom he “had seen in the vision,”
8, “being caused to
sped his way through the constellations, entered the earth’s
and alighted near Daniel, with a message from the throne of God, and “touched” him. He accosts him: “O Daniel, greatly beloved!”
– [a] man filled
with holy desires AFTER THE
Verse 24, “Seventy sevens (of years) are decreed upon thy people (the Jews) and upon the holy city (Jerusalem) to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to cover over iniquity, and to cause everlasting righteousness to come, and to seal (verify) vision and prophet, and to anoint a holy of holies.”
Verse 25, “Know, therefore, and discriminate; from the issuing of a word to restore, and to built Jerusalem, unto Prince Messiah, shall be seven Sevens (of years), and Sixty and Two Sevens; she shall be restored and built as to street and rampart (street and wall), and in distress shall be the times.”
Verse 26, “And after those Sixty-two Sevens, Messiah shall be cut off, and there is not to Him (no guilt and no just judgement); and the city and the sanctuary shall they destroy,” viz., “the people of the prince, the one that is to come, and his end shall be in the overflowing; and unto that end shall be war, a decree (measure or limit) of desolations,”
Verse 27, And he (the price to come) shall cause to prevail a covenant for the many, One Seven; and he shall cause sacrifice and offering to cease, Half of that Seven; and upon wing of abominations (he shall come) a desolater, even until the consummation and (until) that which is decreed (God’s wrath) is poured upon the one desolating.”
marvellous prophecy and answer to the
prayer covers every point made in the prayer itself, as to the Jew,
5 The Interpretation of the “Seventy Weeks.”
understanding of the weeks is indispensable
to every student of prophecy.
Neither our Lord’s Olivet Discourse concerning the End,
Paul’s Thessalonian letters concerning the Tribulation and the
Antichrist, nor John’s Apocalypse can be understood without them. It is no objection that
men have failed,
so long, to understand them. They
were given to be understood; “Know,
and understand,” 9:
angel declares that in the “Time
of the End” they shall be understood, 12: 4.
From the bosom of the prophecy a sun-burst of surpassing
break forth, as
Sevens,” or “Weeks,”
selected from the whole course of time, as weeks relating entirely to
affairs, are Weeks of Years, each seventh part being literally one year. As seven days constitute a
seven years constitute the prophetic week.
All the weeks are of equal chronological measurement, each
consisting of seven literal years, or 2, 520 literal days. The sum is, therefore, 490
years. These weeks
are distributed into three
divisions of 7, 62, 1, that is, into 49, 434, 7, years respectively,
excepting Babylon, span the whole height of the Colossus in chapter 2, and the
lives of the Four Beasts in chapter
7, i.e., from B.C.535, to the second
coming of Christ. They
whole subsequent period of
That the Jews will build their
The sum of the Interval, 30+21+6 is 57 years. The Restoration-period was a Double-period, the total secular time being 106 years (21+57+28+106) of which 21 and 28 were the first “Seven Weeks,” or 49 years, assigned of God for Restoration-work, the uncounted Interval being one of open apostasy from His covenant. The diagram of the time stands thus:
THE RESTORATION PERIOD.
B.C. - 3 - B.C. (Interval)..- B.C. - 4 - B.C.
536 - 21 - 515..(57 years) - 458 - 28 - 439
The first section, that of the days of Zerubbabel,” Neh. 5: 14; the last that of the “Days of Ezra the Scribe and Nehemiah,” Neh. 13: 6, 7.*
[* Note. “Silently the book of Ezra
over the time following the dedication of the second
times of Zerubbabel are not connected
with the times of Ezra, in the book of Ezra, except by the phrase “after these things,” Ezra 7: 1,
i.e., after the dedication of the
After patient study, I have been led to this solution of this age-long problem, and have given it in full discussion in a previous work. Reviewed widely, and accepted by all who have tested the proofs, it remains un-assailed from any side. See “The Thousand Years in Both Testaments,” by Nathaniel West, Pref. 7., pp 152-161, 175-197. It has remained a secret, till now, that the Interval, here mentioned, lay concealed by the angel in the bosom of the first seven weeks. - Nathaniel West.]
The rest of the interpretation is not difficult. The 62 weeks reach from the close of the Restoration to the birth of Christ, A.D.1. These united to the seven preceding are 69 weeks, or 483 years, to which adding the 57, the result is 540, the excess of four years due to the error in our common Dionysian reckoning, the true date being B.C.536. Thus, by the discovery of the interval of 57 years was really concealed in the breast of the “Seven Weeks,” the perplexing problem, unsolved for 2,200 years is satisfied at last, and Biblical and secular chronology brought into perfect harmony.
The second Interval lies between the 69th and the 70th weeks, with two great events at its head, the Crucifixion of Christ, A.D.30, and the Destruction of Jerusalem, A.D.70. It is called “Unto the End,” Dan. 9: 26; interpreted by our Lord as meaning, “Until the Times of the Gentiles be fulfilled,” Luke 21: 24. During this period, 1,826 [now 1,938] years have passed away since the legions of Titus camped on Mount Olivet, Jerusalem has been “trodden down of the Gentiles,” unable to rise to her glory because of the unbelief of her sons, and the occupation of the Holy Land by a “European Concert” that gives to the Turk his power. Upon the Holy City “war and desolations” are decreed and upon the people “dispersion” till the “End” of their weary way, when, under the providence of God, yet after severe conflict, Palestine will become the asylum of the Hebrew race, reclaimed from Gentile hoofs, a land “married to the Lord,” her city a “city ought out, not forsaken,” her people “the redeemed of the Lord,” a holy nation of which it is said, “In righteousness shalt thou be established; thou shalt be far from oppression, for thou shalt not fear; and from terror, for it shall not come nigh thee.” Isa. 60: 1-22; 61: 1-11; 62: 1-12; 54: 1-17.
prior to this glorious outcome, lies the
“70th week.” It coincides with and
closes the “Times of the Gentiles.” It is the last “7 years,” or “One week,”
in Daniel 9: 27,
week, the week of the “Little
in chapter 7,
the week of “the prince that
shall come on wing of abomination,”
9: 27, invading
the Holy Land, and swooping
like a vulture on its prey. His
last campaign is given in Dan.
and elaborated in Zech. 12:
2-8; 14: 1-4; 12: 15,
and in Joel 3: 9-17. The week is opened by the
advent of the
Antichrist and his “covenant”
the Jewish masses, Dan. 9:
27, a treaty
whereby the power holding
[*Note. – No “Year-Day” theory exists any where in Daniel. The word to Ezekiel, “Son of Man, I have given thee each day for a year,” was not spoken to Daniel. His “Sevens” are not seven days put for years, but seven years of 360 days each, prophetic time – a year for a year, and in each year a day for a day, and not a day for 360 years. The 70th Week in Daniel 9: 27 is not 2,500 years, but twice 1,260, or 2,520 days. The 1,260, or “time two times, and a half,” are not 1,260 years, but three and a half years. Otherwise, the 69 Weeks would be 173,880 years! All the weeks are commensurate.]
is the final testing of both Jews and
Gentiles who believe in Christ, the “Great
Tribulation” spoken of in Jer.
as that of “Jacob’s trouble,”
in Matt. 24: 15-28,
as that of “Christ’s Elect,”
in Rev. 7: 14,
as that out of which the election of
Israel, 7: 4-8,
and the election of the
Gentiles, 7: 9,
shall come; and in Dan. 12:
1, as that which is followed by
Israel’s deliverance and the RESURRECTION OF THE HOLY
DEAD. The close of
the last 1,260 days of this week is the close of the “time, times, and dividing of a time,”
three and a half years, in Dan.
7: 25; 12: 7,
which is signalized by the overthrow of the Antichrist at the Second
the Son of Man. The
same scene of
the Lord’s intervention is pictured in Joel
3: 16, 17; Isa. 59: 19-21; 63: 1-6; 66: 14-16; Zeph. 3: 14-20; Zech.
14: 1-5. with
these mighty events the “70th
week” terminates, viz., with the
New-Born Israel, the Second Advent, the Resurrection of the Holy Dead,
Destruction of the Antichrist, the Downfall of the Colossus and the setting up of the
Here, then, in chapter 9, we have attained a view of the world framed in a chronology of the world, in connection with the Jewish race, and their relation to the empires and kingdoms of the world, which entitles Daniel to be the proud distinction of being the founder of the true philosophy of history, the first writer on universal history itself. The four great conceptions of “Welt-Anschauung,” “Welt-Geschichte,” “Welt-Gericht,” and “Welt- Chronologue,” are here represented. The second, third and fourth empires, Israel’s pathway full of sorrow, and Israel’s end full of joy, the doom of Gentile politics and power, and the kingdom of God in victory, all are here. In the most solemn manner Gabriel informs the prophet that the history of God’s people courses its way through different periods of time, all determined by the immutable measurements of God; that as the road-surveyor determines his track with culvert, tunnel, curve, and grade, or a landscape painter sketches his plan on the canvass, draws its lines, fixes its measurements, projects the long perspective, the gloomed defiles and shining end, so God has constructed here the way for Israel’s feet to walk and reach their rest. For wisest reasons, one point, alone, is undefined, impossible by us to be determined, until we come to it, the point when the “What withholdeth” is “taken out of the way,” and the 70th week begins, 2 Thess. 2: 7. Still, all is “Nihtak,” decreed, determined, decided of God; the 70 weeks, the 7, 62, and 1, the 2,300 evening-morning, the twice 1,260 days, and, as we shall see, the 1,290 and 1, 335 days, 12: 11, 12 all measured by Palmoni, the Wonderful Numberer, that Certain Holy One, whose voice came from between the banks of the Ulai, 8: 13. To “know” and “understand” the true interpretation of the 70 weeks is the first necessity of the student of Old and New Testament prophecy, and apart from which, ignorant of God’s plan, he will founder and wander in darkness, the victim of a hundred false time-reckonings, and of expectations borne of enthusiasm worse than these.
perfect confidence we may rest in this
opinion has existed during the last 2,200 years as to the proper
owing (1) to defective chronology and history, and (2) to the unseen
between the third and fourth weeks.
Le Long enumerates 56
different views, Graetz 107, as far
as to the 15th century, and Reusch,
Fraidi and D’Envieu, have
tabulated all the views of the church fathers, the middle age, and of
exist as to the scope of the 70 weeks, (1) that they end with the times
Antiochus, B.C.164, (2) with the times of Titus, A.D.70, (3) with the
Coming of Christ to destroy the Antichrist.
The first is impossible, since our Lord
declares that Daniel predicts the Roman fall of
“After the most thorough investigation,
all modern scholars are agreed that the suffix ‘o’ in the Hebrew
9: 26, is masculine and refers to the ‘prince
that shall come,’ and who is the subject of the verb ‘confirm.’ And that ‘his end’
is the correct rendering.”
“It refers neither to Antiochus, Christ, or
Titus.” Fraidi, Die Exrgese der siebzig Wochen, p. 68. “The suffix and its noun
be rendered ‘his end,’
viz., that of
the hostile prince, and at
use of the definite article “the”
in the phrase “the one that is
to come,” i.e., after the
destruction of the city by Titus, points back to the “Little Horn,” in chapter
7, as to a character already well-known to Daniel, and
which was the
object of his interest in a previous vision.
The translation “his
end,” instead of “the
end thereof,” and “unto
the end, war,” instead of “unto
the end of the war,” in 9:
26, rest upon an absolutely correct text, and
are now conceded by all exegetes.
The sudden spring from
it is true that, for 2,200 years, none
have seen the gap between the third and fourth weeks, yet nearly all
church fathers saw the gap between the 69th and
weeks. Of this the
were certain, viz., that the 70th week is the
Antichrist’s week, at the “End”
of Gentile times, and that the starting-point of the 70 weeks is either
“first Darius the Mede,”
or “first Cyrus as sole king of
Irenaeus, Clement of Alexandria, Tertullian, Eusebius in one
calculations, Origen, Hippolytus, Hilary,
later on Polychronius, and Bruno of Asti; still later, Calvin, Oecolampadius, Bullinger, L’
Empereur, Coccius, Bervaldus, Dathe, Blayney, Uri; later
still, Jungman, Koch, J. D. Michaelis,
Hauenkamp, Velthusen; yet later, Kliefoth,
Kiel, Kock, Christiani, Fraidi, D’ Envieu, Tiefenthal, Dornstetter,
Dusterwald and many others, Briggs holding
also the Cyrus date. Farrar’s distortions of the
evidence, and his special pleading, only repeat, second-hand, the
the Higher Criticism to limit the prophecy to the times of Antiochus. It was not till the fourth
the Artaxerxes date, invented previously by Africanus, was fastened
church, viz., 20th Artaxerxes as the beginning
of the 70 weeks, and
the “lunar” reckoning adopted, supported by the mistranslation of
the word “decreed,”
“determined,” in chapter
9: 24, as if it meant “abbreviated,” a retrograde mode of
reckoning from the crucifixion of Christ, working backward on the
the “middle of the 70th week” means the death of
Christ!! It was
meant also to close
the Gap between the 69th and 70th
weeks, unmindful of the
fact that our Lord had opened it out so luminously in Luke
21: 24, when interpreting the words, “and
unto the end, war,” in Daniel
(R.V.), and thus to smite
“Chiliasm,” held by some Judaizing sects, abusing the true
doctrine, assisted the anti-chiliastic movement.
The spiritualizing method of
Old Testament prophecy, applying all the “curses”
to the Jew, and all the “blessings”
to the Church, came into vogue. A
The following speaks for itself as a specimen
of American imitation of the foreign Higher Criticism.
“There is one particular term of
seventy Weeks at the end of which something is to happen; and it
explained that these are weeks of years … There is nothing in the world
to hinder anybody from putting the terminus a quo at the time of the
Waterloo, or the landing of the Pilgrims, and then looking for something
very important to happen at the end, four hundred
and ninety years from
this time. And
always Farrar – is quoted, saying in his way, that the Christian
leave us “Weltreing
in a chaos of uncertainties and
ever any people on earth kept time, they were
the Jews. From
to Maccabean times there was no possibility of ignorance as to the
years elapsing. The
date of the
completion of the second temple was imperishable.
The long-aged High Priests made daily, monthly,
and annual observations, and registered the years, as part of their
duty. Still more,
the Seleucid Era,
B.C.312, they knew occurred in the 25th of the
70 weeks of Daniel,
reckoned from the Edict of Cyrus, B.C.536.
That Era was accepted by them.
It is the only Era from which the reckonings are made in
Books. Still more,
assassination of the High Priest, Onias III., impressed the whole
profoundly, and its date was never forgotten, B.C.170.
It was the 45th of the 70
continuity of the
priesthood was unbroken, and its official relation to the calendar and
history made its entries authoritative and conclusive.
The chain of tradition was
knew Daniel, and lived to a “high old age.”
The high priest Alexander, when young,
knew Nehemiah, and also lived to be “very old.”
Simeon, who held the infant Jesus, had
known many men whose fathers had seen Judas Maccabaeus.
The same was true of Zacharias to whom
Gabriel came. It
was also true of
the teachers of Gamaliel, the teacher of Paul.
All knew, perfectly, that the 69th week
did not end in the times of Antiochus, much less the 70th
None of the blessings in Daniel 9: 24, had been
Himself had not come; how could
they be? They knew
the awful vision concerning Antiochus, in Daniel 8:
9-14, and 11:
21-35, had been
fulfilled, and as certainly they knew that the prophecy in 9: 26, 27, had not been
knew that no such campaign as that
described in Daniel 11:
40-45, ever occurred
in their history. When
assassinated, in B.C.44, they knew it was in the 62nd. of
weeks, reckoning from B.C.536. When
Augustus was made emperor, they knew it was in the 66th week, B.C.28,
three more weeks had to run “unto
Judaism was in revolt shouting for a Maccabean Caesar.
The few who were godly, like a Simeon
and Anna, waited in hope for “
the 69 weeks ended with the birth of
Christ, is confirmed by the world-wide expectation of His coming – an
expectation held by Jews and Gentiles alike.
It pervaded pagan literature as well as
Jewish. It found an
echo in the Sibylline
books, and was sung in the “Secular
Song” of Horace, and in the 4th Eclogue of
Virgil – a
Christmas carol before the time. It
was discussed in the Senate House of Rome by Lucius Cotta and the
Caesar, insisting that the “King”
predicted in the oracles was Caesar himself, and resisted by Cicero and
to the last extremity. By
the Senate, the Sibyl was remanded to her chest, under lock and key,
question left undecided, till the Star shone over
the jurisdiction of the doctrine of the
seventy weeks is absolute over both Testaments, New and Old, and
us the time-point of both Advents with unerring certainty. For this purpose it was
given. The angel
reveals the Parousia in
Humiliation, Dan. 9: 26,
the Parousia in
Glory, Dan. 7: 13,
and assigns to each its
own time-point in the calendar of history.
The first occurs at the close of the 69th, the second
Interval “unto the End”)
close of the 70th week. As
close of the 69th week all the prophets looked, even though to Daniel
reserved to furnish chronology, so to the close of the 70th week they
looked from Moses (Deut. 32:
Malachi (4: 1-6),
as did the evangelists and
apostles from Matthew (Matt.
24: 15-31) to
John (Rev. 19: 11-21). Here, as everywhere in
prophecy, the way
of simplicity is the way of truth.
Nowhere in all the Word of God is there any First Advent
purpose, prior to the close of the 69th week.
Nowhere, in all God’s Word, is
there any Second Advent, for any purpose, prior to the close of the
week. In every
both Testaments, the Parousia in Glory follows the Parousia of the
and occurs in order to terminate the Great Tribulation (1) by the
of - [out from,
20: 35; Phil. 3: 11)] - the holy
and rapture of the Church, and (2) by the Destruction of the Antichrist
judgment of the living nations, 2
Thess. 1: 6-10. Clear,
simple, uniform and persistent is
this divine revelation of the time – a rock of truth against which all
the wild theories of men dash themselves into foam.
By no vain dream of an imagined “special
revelation” to Paul, in 1
Thess. 4: 14-18;
by no perverted exegesis of Matt.
24: 29- 31, or of
1 Thess. 4: 14-18; 2 Thess. 1: 6-10; 2 Thess. 2: 1-8, or
texts, can this remarkable decree of God be set aside.
In the Old Testament this Parousia in
Glory, at the time-point stated, as a Parousia to raise the holy dead,
the Antichrist, deliver Israel and judge the nations, is everywhere
as one that is a “Shining,” an “Appearing” of Jehovah, for
His saints, with His saints the holy angels.
It is enough to cite Ps.
1: 1-6; Isa. 66: 5; Dan. 7: 13; 12: 1-3; Zech. 14:
the New Testament
that great and definite event is exhibited under three different terms,
equivalent signification, viz., Parousia, Epiphancia, Apokalypsis,
“Arrived Presence,” “Appearing,” “Revelation.”
All are one and inseparable, one
conception in three relations – the first relating to Time, the second
Space, the third to Circumstance and Condition, the close of the 70th
dominating all. The
first marks the
time-point of the personal arrival of the Son of Man in the clouds of
viz., at the close of the “time,
dividing of a time.”
The second denotes the out-bursting splendour of His
presence, the glory
radiating into space. The
expresses the fact that He who so long has been concealed is now no
but openly revealed. It
is the same
everywhere in the New Testament.
The hope of His “appearing”
is the one hope to which the faith of all believers is directed, and
not to any
invented unseen secret unseen advent prior to the close of the [Great]
our Lord and His
apostles taught otherwise, they had arrayed against themselves the
of the Old Testament prophecy, put the New Testament in opposition, and
involved both it and themselves in irreconcilable contradiction. But “the
Scripture cannot be broken.”
On the doctrine of the 70th week, the Interval between the
69th and 70th
week itself, all the devices of
interpretation which torture the word of God to support a vain theory
exemption of the Church from the [Great]
Tribulation, are forever shattered.
The Lord identifies His Second Coming
for the Resurrection of the holy dead and the Rapture of the [‘left’]* of the
25: 29-31, 40, 41, 42; 25: 1; [1 Thess. 4: 17]
with the time-point at the close of the 70th week in Daniel, for the
Resurrection of Israel’s holy dead and the destruction of the [last]
Parousia in Dan. 7: 13; 12:
1-3 is the same Parousia at the
same time-point as in Matt.
24: 29-31. The
is remarkable how plainly the 70 the week
dominates the structure of our Lord’s Olivet-Discourse from Matt. 24: 15 to Matt.
25: 40. He
four apostles Mark 13: 3,
of “the twelve,”
and of the whole
Church as a corporate unit surviving
till He comes – the “Ye”
and “You” of the
– and answers the questions as to “When”
and the “What,” the
Time and the
Sign of His Second Coming and of the End of the Age.
He first of all describes the painful
and chequered “Times of the
down to the “End”
between the 69th and 70th weeks, yet covering silently the 70th week
even to the “End,” 24: 4-14.
He then reverts to the middle of the 70th week, when the “abomination” will “stand in a holy place,” 24: 15,
and proceeds to describe the great Tribulation, or last 1260 days of
Antichrist, 25: 15-29. At the close comes His
Parousia for His
saints, precisely as Daniel had pictured it, Dan.
7: 13, 25-27; 12: 1-3.
calls it the “thief-time” after the 6th Vial, Rev. 16: 15, which with
the 7th closes the
Tribulation at the last loud sound of the 7th Trumpet, Rev.
11: 15-18. He
Resurrection and the Rapture the first acts of His coming, the
gathering of His
elect by His angelic ministry, 24:
30, 31, 40, 41,
44’ 25: 1. He
pictures the judgment of the living nations, 25:
31-46, gathered, as they will be, at Jerusalem, in their
with Israel, His throne of glory overhanging Olivet in front of the
nations separated right and left, converted Israel holding the city
by His hand. In
that Judgment the
Antichrist is destroyed. He
to New-Born Israel, the nearest His throne, and calls them “these my brethren,” 25:
40 – Daniel’s “people
7: 27. He
makes their deliverance immediately
subsequent to the rapture of the church, this occurring at 24: 30, 31, 40, 41; 25: 1;
that at 25: 40;
and, like Daniel, crowns the whole scene
with the destruction of the wicked, the salvation of the righteous, the
“Kingdom” and the “Life
25: 34, 46; Dan.
12: 1-3, 13. From
last the book of Daniel is His guide.
He simply puts together the events in the Ends of Daniel’s
book, chapters 2., 7., 9.,
11 and all of 12.,
the events of the 70th Week, and assigning
the church to her place, “ye”
“you,” in the same
adding parables and admonitions, concludes His answer to the questions
is needless to say that the Apostles followed
their Master’s teaching, and took
His Olivet discourse as the text-book of their eschatology. It ruled the whole faith
of the early
settled every heresy
as to the time of the advent. It
corrected the Thessalonian error as to the “any moment view.” Paul appeals to it to
question. He calls
it the “Word of the Lord.” He had it on his table
when he wrote
both letters to the Thessalonians.
He uses its very language.
The 70th Week covers his own words in 2
Thess. 2: 1-8. John
reproduces it in full, in its two haves of twice 1,260, and gives its
point as that of the slaughter of the “Two
The doctrine of the Seventy Weeks provides us the only data in connection with the “signs of the times,” as foretold by our Lord, for any approximate determination of the nearness of the advent. How much of the interval between the 69th and 70th weeks remains to run is known only by God. When the Antichrist and the Jews are in “covenant,” at the beginning of the 70th week, and clearer still, when the breach occurs between them at the “middle of the week,” then the determination of the year, perhaps the month, but never of the “day or hour,” will be certain, i.e., to all believers. To watch always and wait patiently is the believer’s privilege. Prophetic nearness is one thing, chronological nearness another, and yet faith and hope overleap all intervening events. The relatively brief remainder of the interval, and the Antichrist, are what is immediately before us, and with all sobriety we can say that it is this that lends an interest, so solemn and absorbing, to the attitude of the nations, the extension of missions, the Jewish movements, the Eastern Question, the crimes of Christendom, and the current events in both hemispheres of the world.
“Here we have a true Apocalypse. The Glorious One who sways over the Hiddekel is the ‘Alpha and Omega’ who appeared to John upon the island of Patmos in the Aegean sea not far from Ephesus, and is the ‘Son of Man’ whom Daniel had already seen in the vision of Chapter 7; - there, in a night-dream; here, in open day; - there, in one form; here, in another. He is the same whose back part Moses saw from the cleft of Horeb, and Isaiah saw high and lifted up, and Ezekiel saw above the firmament, and whose fear fell upon them. Unable to endure the sight or the voice, Gabriel interposes to strengthen and compose the shattered frame and mind of the prophet, and restore him to his strength.”
DANIEL, CHAPTERS 10-12 – VISIONS OF THE
“TIME OF THE END.”
(Daniel, Chapters 10-12. – One Prophecy: The Theme, the “Warfare Great;” The Eastern Question; Nature of the Revelation; Date of the Prophecy; Place and Time of the Vision; Occasion of the Vision; The Vision itself; The Christophany; The Persons in the Scene; The Effect of the Vision; Prostration of the Prophet, and Flight of his Companions; The Recovery of the Prophet; The Comfort; Israel under the guardian Care of Angels; Daniel’s Book, a “Scripture of Truth;” Warning against the false Criticism of the Book.)
chapters form one continuous prophecy, the
longest in the book, and furnish the last and crowning proof of the
our thesis, viz., that the
Chapter 10, which gives us the Christophany and a wider glimpse than before into the unseen world, is the Prologue, or introduction to 11. and 12., which contain the proper “Revelation” made to the prophet concerning the “Time of the End,” including the near and far horizons of the third and fourth empires. The Epilogue is 12: 5-13. The theme of the prophecy is the “Warfare Great,” the Eastern Question and its solution. Each of the chapters, 10., 11., 12., forms a general separate section of the whole prediction, the first verse of 11. properly belong to the close of 10. All the way from 10: 4 to 12: 13, we stand on the banks of the Hiddekel, see the vision, watch the actions of the prophet hear the Lord, the Angels, and Daniel talk, and listen to the revelation given. At 12: 4, the scene changes, final explanations are made, and the prophet is dismissed to his rest.
1. As to the nature of the Revelation itself. The prophet says, a “Thing,” literally a “Word,” was revealed to him by means of a “Vision,” and that the word was true, and related to great and long-continued military struggle. The translation of the clause in the King James’ Version, “and the time appointed was long,” is simply a defective paraphrase of the Hebrew text. The correct rendering is, “and Truth is the Word, even Warfare Great,” i.e., the Revelation he records is that of Israel’s long struggle with the World-Power in its successive empires and kingdoms, from the third year of Cyrus down to the final deliverance of the Jews from Gentile hands, and the consummation of the Kingdom of Christ at His Second Coming. In a somewhat similar manner Virgil and Homer began their great epics with “Arms and the Man I sing,” and Theirs and Macauley their histories with “I propose to write” so and so. If, imitating the title to John’s Apocalypse, we might affix one to this section of Daniel’s book, it would be this: “The Revelation of the Angel of Jehovah which God gave to Him to show unto His servants the things which must come to pass in the latter days, concerning the destiny of Israel and the World-Powers; and He told this word by His angel Gabriel, whom He sent to His servant Daniel, commanding him to shut up and seal the book unto the Time of the End. Blessed is he who waits and comes to the end of the days.”
As to the Date of the Prophecy. According
to Babylonian reckoning, the
“first year of Cyrus”
was that of
the overthrow of
As to the Place and Time of the Vision.
The place was by the banks of the river
Tigris, whose Accadian name was “Iddiklat,” called biblically
third of the four
great rivers into which the river of Eden parted, “that which goeth toward the east of
Daniel’s definite statement, “I
by the side of the great river Hiddekel,” taken in
his description of the conduct of his companions, “the men that were with me,”
makes it certain
that the prophet was not visionally transported there, but was bodily
present, 10: 4, 7.
The Euphrates and Tigris,
As the waters were divided, so will it be
again, Isa. 11: 15; Rev.
16: 12. As
the walls of Jerico fell, so shall it
be again, Isa. 2: 15; Rev.
15: 19. As
the mountains were rent and skipped,
so shall it be again. Ps.
114: 4, 10; Rev. 16: 19.
As hailstones fell at Bethoron, so, with
mightier force shall it be again, Rev.
16: 21. As
the transjordanic regions,
As to the Occasion of the Vision.
It was the sad intelligence received
concerning the state of affairs at
The Vision itself. It
Christophany, or appearing of the Angel of Jehovah in human form. The prophet lifts his eyes
and sees in
open day a “Certain Man”
supernatural presence hovering over the waters of the Hiddekel, a man
not the “Talar,”
but the shining
linen apron garment of a Jewish High-Priest, his loins cinctured with “gold of Uphaz,” his body in
colour like a
such as sparkled in the pectoral of Aaron, his face “flashing like the lightening,”
his eyes like
his arms and feet
like “polish brass,”
and his voice
as “the voice of a multitude,”
10: 5, 6; or,
as the word imports, like surges
breaking on the shore, or the noise of shouting armies in the distance,
of deep, low, bustling thunder.
Omnipotence and sublimity are here.
It is a vision of Jesus Christ before His incarnation, yet
the dignity of His royal, priestly and prophetic offices, in the terror
judical majesty, the forecast splendour of His exalted humanity, and
of His deity; a “Man,”
both Man and
God, incomparable in the majesty of His person and His natures – a face
above the brightness of the sun, a voice vocal as the thunder. His transparent body means
and glory. His
white robe means
that He is a priest, His golden girdle that He is a King, His uttering
that He is a prophet. His
searching fire mean omniscience.
His arms and feet, like burning brass, mean judgment of
His enemies. His
face effulgent means that God is
there! Elsewhere in
the book of
Daniel this same glorious person, who is the central figure of it all,
presented as the “Stone”
from the mountain, 2: 34, 45;
“One like a Son of God,”
25; a “Watcher and
who cares for Israel, 4: 13;
“One like a Son of Man,”
coming in the clouds, 7: 13;
Holy One, Palmoni, Wonderful Numberer,” whose voice Daniel
coming from between the banks of the Ulai, 8: 13,
15, 16; “Messiah”
crucified, 9: 26,
and now the “Linen Clothed Man”
hovering sublime above the
Hiddekel. In all
these forms and
relations He appears as the Crusher of the Colossus of earthly politics
power, the Champion of His suffering saints in the furnace and the den,
Judge of all the earth, the Measurer of the Ages and the Ends, the
the Times, the Revealer of the truth and Unveiler of Israel’s pathway
goal, the atoning Redeemer of His people, the Destroyer of the
Deliverer of the Jews, the immortal Monarch of the Fifth Empire, and
the Kingdom of God to victory over all the earth.
Here, in the present vision, 10: 5, 6, He appears in
His greatest splendour and
is that Glorious One John saw “in
the isle that
is called Patmos,” 630 years later; the Walker in the
midst of the
golden candlesticks, the Lamb on the Throne, the many-crowned Warrior
white horse, and, as in Moses and John, so here, the Oath-Swearing
uplifted hand to heaven, Deut.
32: 40; Rev. 10: 5,
6; Dan. 12: 7. He
“Angel of the Covenant,”
6. The Persons in the Scene. They are (1) the Linen Clothed Man, (2) Daniel and his companions, (3) Gabriel, (4) Michael, and (5) “Two Others,” referred to in chap. 12: 5, 6. Whether the companions of Daniel were Zechariah, Haggai and Malachi, or Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, or some servants of the prophet, is indeterminable. Conjectural is every view as to who the “Two Others” are. Michael is expressly named, 10: 13, 21. Gabriel is not named, but the characteristic mode of addressing the prophet as a “man greatly beloved,” and of “touching” him to strengthen him, and the fact that he who addresses and touches is the revealing angel, leaves no doubt that the “hand” in contact with the prostrate prophet, 10: 10, 16, 18, is not that of the Linen-Clothed Man, 10: 5, 6, but is the “hand” of Gabriel. Compare chapter 9: 21-23, with 8: 15, 16. There is nothing in the expression, “one like the similitude of the sons of Adam touched my lips,” 10: 16, to indicate otherwise. The expression is not the same as that in chapter 7: 13, “One like a Son of Enash,” coming in the clouds of heaven. The action and speech of the angel in chapters 8 and 9 and here in chapter 10, in connection with all these prophecies, prove that Gabriel is the Toucher, the Speaker and the Revealing Angel, all the way from Dan. 10: 10 to 12: 4, and – save chapter 12: 7, where the Linen-Clothed Man answers a question – is the Speaker and Revealer of the whole prophecy. The prophet does not say that the Linen-Clothed Man laid “His hand” upon him, as John says of Christ in Rev. 1: 17, but simply “a hand” touched me, Dan. 10: 10, viz., the hand of Gabriel.
The Effect of the Vision on the Prophet and
his Companions and the Circumstances of his Recovery.
(1) On his companions.
Like those of Saul, when the Lord
appeared to him on the way to
He describes his condition. Pathetically he narrates that his “strength” had departed, his “comeliness” been turned to “corruption,” and that, as soon as he heard the “voice of the words” of the Linen-Clothed Man he was thrown into a “deep sleep,” prostrate, his “face toward the ground” 10: 8, 9. Haggard, withered, disfigured, the freshness of his countenance gone, stupefied, overpowered by the Divine presence, he fell comatose and heavy to the earth. The awful splendour and voice of Jehovah had shattered him. Once before, under a vision less powerful, he says he was “astounded,” “fainted,” and was “sick for many days,” 8: 27. Nevertheless, the power that prostrated him re-invigorated and recovered him. The mysterious Form that hovered over the Hiddekel withheld himself now from the eyes and ears of the prophet unable to endure more, and sent an angel to succour and support him. Thrice the prophet is “touched” and addressed by Gabriel 10: 10-18. At the first touch, 10: 10, he is raised from the ground, resting on his “knees” and the “palms of his hands.” Like a quadruped, he stands on all fours. His crouching position is that of one endeavouring to rise but too feeble to succeed. The angel comforts and instructs him. “O, Daniel, man greatly beloved!” tells him he has a message for him, desires him to understand it and bids him “stand upright.” Weak, yet obedient, the prophet rises. “When he had spoken this word to me, I stood, trembling” 10: 11. The angel assures him that, from the first day he had “set his heart to understand and chastened himself before God,” his prayer had been heard, and that now, in answer to prayer for his sake, he, Gabriel, had come to him, 10: 12. He explains the delay and gives the prophet a glimpse into the conflicts of the unseen world, showing what interest the angels, good and evil, take in the affairs of human governments. He says that for twenty-one days following the beginning of Daniel’s prayer, he had stood at his post counteracting the influence of the evil angel-prince of Persia, who was responsible for all the mischief and machinations at Jerusalem, and for the cunning schemes to change the Persian policy adversely to the Jews; that Michael, the guardian prince of Israel and commander of the heavenly hosts, had come to his help, that both had won a victory over the evil influence at the Persian court, and that thus relieved from his watch he, Gabriel, had hastened as rapidly as possible to cause the prophet to understand not only this but future things, 10: 13, 14. Herein the prophet is assured, first of all, that, in spite of all the opposition, the Temple should be built, although in troublous times, and, so far, the prophecy in chapter 9: 25 be fulfilled; that the lost edict of Cyrus would yet be discovered and reinforced by a new decree of Darius, the son of Hystaspes, and the court-demon, whether at Babylon, Shushan, or Achmetha, be foiled, Ezra 5: 13, 17; 6: 1-7, 8-12, 15-22. Here was comfort indeed. But, as the prophecy in both chapters 8 and 9 looked into future times beyond the Persian rule, even into Greek and Roman times, and on to the end of Israel’s long pathway, even to the 70th. Week in chapter 9, so had he hurried specially to tell the prophet what should “befall his people in the latter days,” 10: 14. He uses an expression – “acharith hayyimim,” “the afterness of the days” – well known to Daniel, a technical expression including all near and far horizons, but eminently the remote, Dan. 8: 17, 19, 23; 2: 28. He tells him, in sum, that the message he brings is no less than a prophecy in detail of “Warfare Great,” 10: 1, covering all Persia, Greek and Roman times, reaching to the last crisis and the last deliverance.
solemn word is too much for the trembling
prophet to endure. If
indeed he had
been confronted and strengthened somewhat by the angel’s word and
yet deeply affected by what he now heard, he seems to relapse. The thought of further
the people overcomes him. He
becomes dejected again and “dumb.” “When he
(the angel) had spoken such
words to me, I set my face
to the ground, and I became dumb,” 10:
second time the angel
commiserates his frailty and touches his “lips,”
signifying that he wishes him to speak.
The prophet opens his mouth and pleads in plaintive tones
incapacity, “O, my Lord, by
reason of the vision
my pains come upon me, and I retained no strength.
For how can the servant of this my Lord
talk with this my Lord, for, as for me, no strength has remained in me,
breath left in me,” 10:
16, 17. Stricken
prophet! Old man,
weak from years and from
fasting, overpowered by the sight above the Hiddekel, and now weighed
with the burden of
That, as in the past, so in the future,
Daniel’s people are under the special guardianship of the angels of
God. In the midst
of their trials,
angelic power shall defend the faithful.
For this reason, Gabriel informs him that he must “return” to the Persian
court to maintain the
advantage already gained, 10:
13, and continue
to “fight with the angel-prince
10: 20, during
the whole period of the
Persian supremacy, and so incline the kings of Persia to favour Israel
a fact made evident in all the Persian history and particularly so in
of Esther. He adds,
there will be a time when, after he is gone away and is at his post of
watchfulness, another enemy, the evil “angel-prince
of Grecia shall come,” 10:
Persian supremacy will pass away,
the Jews shall fall under Greek dominion and again experience
the angel will stay long
enough to “show,”
i.e., explain, to
the prophet “what is noted in
the Scripture of
Truth” concerning not only the times of Persia and Greece,
end of Roman times also, even the end of the “Warfare
adds that, although the sufferings of the Jews will be severe, yet the
will be victory for the people of God.
All the more evident is this since but twenty-one days
ago, he, Gabriel,
stood up against the evil angel-prince of Persia and foiled the
the Persian court, 10: 13;
Michael, his only
help, and “none but Michael,”
archangel and guardian prince of Israel, was needed then or would be
hereafter, to “exert himself
i.e., the powers of Persia and Greece, or against the “Powers” in the closing
struggle of the “Warfare Great,”
human allies will be
needed even in
(2) The final comfort given is the solemn Sanction of the angel, soul-assuring and inviolable, to all the revelations Daniel has received, and to the “Book” in which, from the first, he had recorded them. He calls Daniel’s book the “Kitab Emech” or “Writing of Truth,” i.e., “The Scripture.” And not fiction, 10: 21, and in 12: 4, calls it “Hassepher,” “The Book.” This “Writing of Truth” is not any unwritten book of God’s decrees, nor of His providence, nor is it the “book of life,” nor of “God’s remembrance,” nor any archives of angels in heaven, but is the visible and manual “Scripture” of the revelations given and recorded by Daniel in human alphabetic characters, Hebrew and Aramaean. It was something in Daniel’s possession – a “Sepher,” or “Book” which when completed, was to be placed among the “Sepharim” or canonical “Books” of the Jewish people, like the “Sepharim” or “Books” in 9: 2, of which “Hassepher,” “Book” of Moses was one, Exod. 17: 14; Dan. 9: 11, 13. Already, from B.C.603 to 533, the prophet had received various revelations, viz.: those in chapters 2, 7, 8, and 9, and with the histories connected with them, 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, had faithfully recorded them in “the Book,” 12: 4. He “wrote” them, 7: 1, at the time of their occurrence, as did other prophets, Isa. 7: 3; Jer. 19: 14; Hos. 1: 2, and “shut up the vision,” 8: 26, and he tells us, as a prophet, and in view of his account, that what he wrote was “Truth,” not fiction, and “Truth” given by an angel from heaven, and by the Spirit of God, in answer to prayer, 2: 17, 18; 9: 4; not a human invention, or production of his own will, or private interpretation of the mind of God; nothing of a psychological genenis, or even of a logical conclusion from any premises, nor a pious imagination, but an “Apocalypse,” a “Secret Revealed” by the “God of Heaven,” 2: 18, 22, 27, and much of which he could not understand, 8: 27. These revelations contain the forecast outline history of the World-Power and of the Jews, with a chronological clock of the Ages down to the Second Advent of Christ – an apocalypse in which the Holy Land, the Holy City, and Israel, the Holy People, endure persistently, from first to last, in spite of all adverse fortune, reserved for a glorious destiny in the “Time of the End.”
And now the angel comes to add one more “Revelation” and “Word of Truth,” showing more particularly certain great events on Persia, Greek and final Roman times, to be added to Daniel’s “Book,” so completing it, sealing it officially and transmitting it to be read and studied in the “Time of the End,” 12: 4. This final revelation the prophet solemnly declares is “Truth” because the angel so declared, 10: 1-21. Gabriel also calls Daniel’s whole “Book” a “Kitab Emeth,” a “Writing” or “Scripture of Truth,” not fiction. By friend and foe alike, the unity of the book and its authorship is conceded. Upon the supposition of the author’s piety and honesty, his repeated statements that the predictions were a “revelation” from God at the dates and places specified, and than an angel from heaven pronounced the words he brought, to be “Truth,” and Daniel’s book a book of “Truth,” its prophecies to be fulfilled only “after many days,” 10: 14; 12: 4; upon this supposition the modern critical hypothesis, that it originated near 400 years after Daniel was dead, and was composed by a Maccabean novelist, is entirely excluded. Otherwise, no man more wicked, sacrilegious or insane, than he who, making such statements as the author of this book has made, and knowing them to be mendacious, would palm them off as true. Doubly insane, and cruel with a mocking sympathy, for writing a book like this, January, B.C.164 – as the critics say – after the tribulation was past and gone, December 165 B.C. – the Temple cleansed – in order to arm beforehand and comfort with a fiction, God’s people, in view of that same tribulation yet to begin B.C. 168! – still more, attributing the book of Daniel who, for the Maccabean writer, was no more than a myth! Therefore, did the Holy Spirit use, purposely, the designation “Scripture of Truth,” warning against the false criticism which, in all ages, would assail the “book,” and especially in ours, when the time for its last fulfilment approximates. Knowing that the scoffer would come in the last days, curling his crest against the Pentateuch, the Prophets, the Sacred Books of History, and eminently against the Book of Daniel, the wisdom of God fore-issued this divine declaration against the unbelief that would account it a “fiction,” and so would fortify God’s people everywhere in opposition to a scientific scepticism that sports with a “Revelation” from heaven, an angel-spoken “word of Truth,” recorded by a holy “prophet,” and sanctioned by Christ and His apostles. “O, Daniel, greatly beloved, be strong and be strong!”
Eastern Question is not a question of
to-day, nor of yesterday. When history first began
to be written,
it was already there. When
it is re-opened,
all the world is
concerned. It is
Occidentalism in its inevitable
conflict with Orientalism. Who
to be the champion or leader of Occidentalism, now – the Anglo-Saxon or
the Slav? The world
itself in two camps. It
longer a question who shall hold Constantinople, or control the Suez
command the pass of Thermopylae, or dictate the oracles of
DANIEL, CHAPTERS 10-12. – TSABA GADOL. WARFARE GREAT.
(Daniel, chapters 10-12, continued. – Chapter 11: 1-35, “Tsa-ba Gadol,” the “Warfare Great;” The Chapter assailed as a Spurious Production; Reply: Geography of the Prophecy; The Eastern Question; Division of Chapter; The Persian Succession; the Greek; The Diadochian Kingdoms; Ptolemies and Seleucids; the Intervals in the Prophecy; Wars of Syria and Egypt; Antiochus Epiphanes; Campaigns against Egypt; Campaigns against Palestine; The Maccabean Tribulation; The Martyr-Roll.)
In chapter 11
the angel resumes and unfolds the prophetic history of the Medo-Persian
Graeco-Macedonian empires, and, after a transition-section, in which
and anti-type are blended, springs from the “Time
of the End” of the 3rd. empire to
the “Time of the End”of
the 4th., i.e.,
from Antiochus Epiphanes to the last Antichrist.
Such the manner of prophecy.
By this means he brings the close of his
concerning the “Warfare Great”
into harmony with the close in 2,
7, and 9,
and terminates in 12
his amazing apocalypse
of the future of the Jews and of the kingdoms of the world. Chapter 11
therefore, busies itself with (1) the Ram and Rough Goat of 8, expanding their
history; (2) the Two of the
Four Horns by which the Notable Horn in 8
was succeeded; (3) with the Little Horn that rose out of one of the
the last Antichrist represented here as “the
11: 36, the
Antitype of Antiochus. Thus
the angel “shows,”
i.e., explains, by amplification,
“what is written in the
Scripture of Truth.”
It is not possible to imagine a more
powerful proof of the truth of our thesis.
The “Warfare Great”
till closed by the destruction of Antichrist.
Modern criticism has specially attacked this chapter, (1) on account of the minuteness, multiplicity and exactitude of its details, and (2) on account of its perfect historical fulfilment, as far as 11: 35, and partly as far as 11: 39. It is regarded as a spurious production, the work of a Jew who, under the mask of prediction, wrote the history of his own times, nearly 400 years after Daniel was dead, attributing the same to the prophet of the exile who, for him, had no existence.* The clearness and precision of the prophecy are used as arguments against its genuineness and authenticity, and the perfection of the prophecy is made a ground of objection against its inspiration. This modern reproduction of Porphyry, “the bitterest enemy of Christianity,” B.C. 233-303, 1500 years ago, met its unanswerable refutation in the same antiquity from the pens of Jerome, Eusebius, Apollinarius, Methodius, Chrysostom and others, as it has again from the most eminent scholars who have replied to the modern assault.
[* The criticism decides that there is nothing genuine in 10-12: except 12: 1-4, and annexes these four verses to 9. That is, all after 9, save these verses, is a “Maccabean interpolation!” And 9 and 12: 1-4 end with Antiochus! It is worthless. Ecclesiasticus, B.C. 180, or 16 years before B.C. 164, when the critics say Daniel’s book was composed, recognizes Dan. 10: 13, 20, and imitates the texts. The Septuagint, begun B.C. 281, or 177 years before 164, recognizes the whole book of Daniel. Meinhold has critically proved that the book was in existence from B.C. 250-300 before Christ. But, more than all, by friend and foe alike, the unity of the authorship of the book is confessed. The concession to the critics, here, by Zockler in Lange, is unfortunate. Kamphausen has trumpeted the most vigorously.]
The criticism is worthless when once the reason of the prophecy is remembered, in connection with the fact that precisely for want of further details the vision in 8 was “not understood,” 8: 27: that, because of the suspended work at Jerusalem, the prophet had “mourned and fasted” and seemed to think that the prediction in 9 might not be fulfilled, 10: 2, 3; and that having now received the details he declares that he came to “understanding of the vision,” 10: 1. If such statements are the fabrications of a novelist it is a crime to retain the book in the canon, and, moreover, the whole New Testament eschatology founded upon it is false. They are not fabrications. The reason of the prophecy is all-sufficient. It was in the purpose of God that prophecy should cease with Malachi, and that during 400 years, next ensuing, no prophet should arise to guide God’s people in a crisis that threatened to sweep away their new-built city, temple, religion, and even their existence. What wonder, then, that, commiserating the plaint of the prophet who desired more details concerning the future, and knowing well the thunderbolt that would strike the Jews for their apostasy, the Lord, in 11, should repeat and amplify what had been begun in 8, just as He repeated and amplified in 8 what had been begun in 7 and 2? What wonder that He should thus forewarn the faithful against the sophisms and seductions with which the spread of Greek culture would ensnare them, and by the very details of forerunning events cause “them of understanding among the people,” 11: 33, to see approaching danger, and so prepare and arm the faithful with the courage and the constancy that made the Maccabean victory so glorious? The forecast events, as year after year, they were realized in history and the day of trouble drew near, could only incite those “who feared the Lord to speak often one to another,” Mal. 3: 16, and confirm their own and their children’s faith. And so to the far-off “End” on which the hope of Israel rested, what other termination could be given to this prediction of the “Warfare Great,” than that which crowns the whole complex prophecy of this “Book” with Israel’s ultimate and full deliverance, connected with the Resurrection of the holy dead at Messiah’s Second Coming? In both respects, 11 and 12 are an illustrious proof of the love and care of God for His people, the moment of His unchanging faithfulness to all generations. The objection to minuteness and multiplicity of details may be brought with equal force against the prophecies in 2 and 7 concerning the close of the 4th. Empire, and in 9 concerning the chronology and close of the 70 Weeks. It is wholly worthless. It would rule out the apocalypses of Ezekiel and John, and the minute predictions of all the prophets.
is no man-made narrative, under the mask of
prophecy, we have here, but true prediction, the tone, gaps, leaps,
manner of prediction, its organic and typical relations. It is a prophecy of “Warfare Great” not only
between the nations, but
geography and the prophecy is easily
determined. It is
that of the empire
of Cyrus, eight times greater than the empire of Babylon, stretching
and the Indus to the Mediterranean and Aegean seas, and from Danube,
Caucasus, Caspian and the Jaxartes, to the Indian Ocean, Persian Golf
deserts of Arabia and Nubia – the empire of one who struck the fetters
from the Jews, restored the exiles and enabled them to build their
their city. It is
the empire of
Alexander who carried his conquests still further southward to the
But come back. It belongs to the very perfection of the prophecy, whose compactness and lapidary brevity are without a parallel, that volumes of detail can be crowded into its exposition. It is a “Scripture of Truth” covering the fortunes of the Jews in contact with the nations, from 3rd. Cyrus, B.C.534, to 11th. Antiochus Epiophanes, B.C. 164, a period of 370 years, together with the scenes and events preceding and during the 70 Weeks in chapter 9, the near horizon of the 3rd. empire, a type of the far horizon of the 4th.
The division of the chapter is not difficult. It falls into the following sections; (1) verses 2-4; (2) verses 5-9; (3) verses 10-20; (4) verses 21-35; (5) verses 36-39; (6) verses 40-45.
2-4. The Persian and Greek
angel first of all unrolls the
Persian succession after Cyrus, as far as the fourth in the line. Three kings, the false
shall rise after Cyrus, the fourth one the proud invader of
(1) Cyrus to Cambyses, B.C.538-529. [9 years]
(2) Cambyses to Darius Hystaspes, 529-521. [8 years]
(3) Darius Hystaspes to Xerxes, 521-480. [41 years]
(4) Xerxes, Invasion in 5th. Year, 480, a period of 5 years.
next a period of 146 years, filled
by a succession of eight Persian kings, he unveils the empire of
Great and his counter invasion of
(1) Alexander’s empire, B.C. 334-323. [11 years]
(2) Alexander’s death, 323.
Overleaping a period of 21 years, he unveils the quadripartition of Alexander’s empire, B.C. 323, into the
(2) North Syria ruled by Seleusus.
four generals of Alexander are called
“Diadochi” or “Successors,” yet “not
of his posterity,” 11:
these kingdoms the two
selected by the angel for special prophecy were chosen because
PTOLEMITES AND SELEUCIDS
Ptolemy I. Soter,
(2) Ptolemy II. Philadelphus, B.C. 285-247; Antiochus II. Theos, B.C. 261-246 – 11: 6.
(3) Ptolemy III. Euergetes, B.C. 247-221; Selecus II. Kallinikos, B.C. 246-226 – 11: 7-9.
(4) Ptolemy IV. Philopator, B.C. 221-205; Seleucus III. Keraunos, B.C. 226-222 – 11: 10-12.
(5) Ptolemy V. Epiphanes, B.C. 205-181; Antiochus III., the Great, B.C. 222-187 – 11: 13-19.
(6) Seleucus IV., B. C.187-175 – 11: 20.
(7) Ptolemy VI. Philometor, B.C. 181-146; Antiochus IV. Epiphanes, B.C. 175-164 – 11: 21-35.
is, six Ptolemies and six Seleucids prior
to Antiochus Epiphanes; twelve in all, or thirteen in all, the reign of
are the Intervals or
Gaps in this
prophecy of the future from 3rd. Cyrus to 11th.
Epiphanes, 534-175 = 359 years. The
angel closes the events he foretells as stepping-stones to the crisis. Prophetic history is one
secular history another. No
uninspired writer would write history as here forecast.
(1) An interval of 146 years lies
between verses 2
and 3, from 5th.
Xerxes 480 to Alexander 334, including
eight Persian kings. (2)
21 years, between the clauses in verse
from Alexander’s death to the partition of his empire, 323-302. (3) Another of 30 years,
between 5 and 6,
covering the omitted reign of
warfare wages from Ptolemy I, and
Verses 11: 5-9,
B.C. 306-247, a period of 59 years, from
10-20, B.C. 227-175, a period of 52 years.
(1) Overleaping 20 years, 247-227, down
to the “sons” of
Seleucus II., viz.:
Seleucus III., 227, and Antiochus III. the Great, 224, the angel
(3) After an imposing military demonstration there should be a second alliance between Syria and Egypt, a scheme again for the union of the two kingdoms, based on what Eastern monarchs would call “equitable negotiations” (not “upright ones”), all the more so since Egypt should be in her conqueror’s power; the scheme this, viz.: the marriage of Cleopatra, the daughter of Antiochus, to Ptolemy V., in order to betray Egypt into her father’s hands, a scheme foiled by her wifely fidelity to her husband; Cleopatra in ruin, the “equitable negotiations!” 11: 17, B.C. 195. (4) Finally, Antiochus should undertake an expedition against the coast islands of Asia Minor, B.C. 190, but suffer a fair and honourable let lasting defeat by Scipio Asiaticus at the battle of Magnesia, losing also his fleet at Ephesus, and thus, punished for his insults, be driven in retreat toward his own stronghold, compelled to surrender all his European possessions, his eastern ones also west of the Taurus, forced out of Europe by the Romans, loaded with indemnity, killed while plundering the temple of Jupiter at Elymais, and so disappearing forever from human history. 11: 18, 19, B.C. 187. His successor – Seleucus IV., a “Revenue Raiser” causing Helioderus to go through Palestine, and attempting to plunder the temple, - should enjoy a brief reign, and suffer by poison at Heliodorus’ hands a death as ignominous as that of his predecessor, 11: 20, B. C. 175. Thus, in his own way, in 11: 5-20, the angel foretold the founding of the Syrian kingdom, 11: 5; unveiled two diplomatic scenes, one in the palace at Antioch, 11: 6, the other in the palace at Alexandria, 11: 17, one invasion of Syria, 11: 7-9, two invasions of Egypt and the conquest of Palestine by the King of the North, 11: 10-12, 13-16. Also his last campaign and ignominous end, 11: 18, 19, with that of his successor, 11: 20 – the whole intended to lead up to the advent of the “Madman,” or Greek Antichrist, viz.:
ANTIOCHUS IV., EPIPHANES.
IV. Verses 11: 21-35, B.C. 175-164. Of this wild beast in human form the angel fortels that a “Vile” or “Contemptible Person” should, in the place of (“the state of”) Seleucus IV. stand up in his pride, a younger son of Antiochus the Great, born B.C. 221, dying B.C. 164, the “Little Horn” in 8: 9, 20 years a hostage at Rome, and without title to the throne, and should, at the age of 58 years, effect a successful coup d’ etrat, usurping by craft the Syrian crown, 11: 21, B.C. 175; that, under him, the same playing fast and loose with truth and treaties, which distinguished his house, and now prevails in modern times, should continue, the same diplomacy in foreign affairs, the utter absence of good faith and presence of dissimulation, the pretence of peace while preparing war, the promise of reforms for Israel while effecting none, the practice of menace, intrigue, and force, to secure dynastic interests, a policy in which financial and political would be the first and justice, truth, humanity and righteousness, the last considerations – that, true to the traditions of his house, he would establish his kingdom (1) by leaguing with apostate Jews, Palestine now in his possession, breaking a pre-existing covenant to give the Holy Land to Egypt’s queen as her dowry, and in which Ptolemy Philometor was “prince of the covenant,” 11: 22, repelling by superior force “the arms of a flood;” Ptolemy’s invasion of Syria to enforce a treaty right, and entering into a new treaty; and, that “after the league made with him,” he, Antiochus, would “work deceitfully,” 11: 23; (2) by taking advantage of the wars in Mecedonia, Greece and Southern Europe, he would endeavour to conquer Egypt, uniting both kingdoms on one, then Macedonia, Thrace, Greece and Asia Minor, so forming one mighty empire out of all, controlling the Mediterranean and acquiring supremacy over the three continents. The angel predicts that his
Would be three, and in the following order, viz.:
(1) The First Campaign would be a crafty entrance into Egypt with a small force, “in time of security,” marching along the rich provinces of Lower Egypt – the Nile Valley – coming up as far as Memphis, simulating friendship yet plundering the country, and, in order to become “strong” with the Egyptians, distributing wealth and spoil to the people, contrary to the custom of his house, and plotting against the fortresses, 11: 23, 24, B.C. 173.
(2) The Second Campaign would be in force, courageously, defeating the great army of Ptolemy betrayed by his own courtiers into the hands of Antiochus; that, then, forming a new treaty, one king in the power of the other, “both these kings’ hearts would be to do mischief.” Both “speaking lies at one table.” Yet unsuccessfully, because God had set a time-limit to their intrigues. The angel here draws a picture of modern diplomacy also, true to the life. He paints Gentile politics and power in living costume, the code and cunning of the great Colossus, the inner life of the Beasts, 11: 25-27, B.C. 170.
The Third Campaign
should be in force
again, but disastrous to Antiochus, since Popilius Loenas and the Roman
from the naval stations at Cypris and Crete – “the ships from Kittim” –
would compel him
Still more, the angel predicts that his
Would be two, and in the following order, viz.:
The First Campaign
would be upon his
return northward from the Second Expedition against
(2) The Second Campaign would be upon his expulsion from Egypt by the Roman fleet under Popilius, 11: 30, when, humiliated, and raging like a madman, he would return northward, with indignation against the “Holy Covenant,” and, in league with the apostates, devote 20,000 more to massacre, pollute the bulwarked sanctuary of God, abolish the Daily Sacrifice, set up “the Abomination causing desolation” – a pagan altar on the altar of Jehovah – violating mothers and daughters and hanging infants, increasing by corruption the number of apostates and giving orders to his generals if failing to Hellenize the Holy People, then to “root out the whole race of the Jews” and “make Jerusalem a common burying-ground,” 11: 31, 32. All which he would “do” or attrempt to “do,” B.C. 168-165; I Macc. 1: 29-64; 3: 32-37. The climax of horror was reached 15th. and 25th. December, B.C. 168. The vision of it is given in chapter 8: 9-14, 23-25.
But, though ground between contending empires, God would not forsake His people. His covenant stands fast. Evermore there shall be “a remnant according to the election of grace,” a company of overcoming souls, faithful to death, ordained to wear a crown brighter than David wore and jewelled with gems more lustrous than the stones on Aaron’s breast. If Antiochus can “do,” God’s people shall “do.” The angel fortells
THE MACCABEAN TRIBULATION
He depicts the unsurpassed courage of a holy Mattathias and his five sons, among whom Judas Maccabaeus, the “Hammer” of God – a Charles Martel before his time – and all his Asmonean heroes should stand forth strong in the strength of God, resisting the commandments of the Greek Antichrist – God’s own, who, through faith should “obtain a good report,” when persecution would be the greatest, the tyrants rage the hottest. “The people who know their God shall be strong and do!” 11: 32. Soul-thrilling is the record of their deeds, in I Macc. 2: 1-70. He predicts that the holy Teachers, the “Maskilim,” or men of understanding, should instruct the people to stand for the truth, God, and the religion of their fathers in the midst of captivity and martyrdom by flame and sword, spoiled of all things, their only raiment sheepskins and goatskins, their home the battle-field, their shelter the dens and caves of the earth; that a little band of pious souls, the faithful “Chasidim,” would rally to their help, when all seemed lost; that a crowd of cowards, deserters in time of danger, hypocrites and flatterers in time of victory, would cleave the them; that among the slain would be some of the brave hero-leaders who would win the martyr’s crown; that God’s design was to “try, purify and make white” His loved ones, show to the world the indestructibility of grace, the power of faith and patience of hope, and that neither tribulation nor distress, not persecution, famine, nakedness, peril or sword, could separate them from His love; and, finally, that though severe, the tribulation would be short, even “for an appointed time” – the 1150 days mentioned in 8: 14. So does the angel unveil the “Warfare Great” at the close of Old Testament times. That the illustrious heroes of the Maccabaean age were sustained by the Hope of the Resurrection, which their holy prophets, from Moses to Daniel, had set before them – yea, from Abraham’s day – their history most touchingly attests. Thrilling, beyond description is the story of the martyrdom of the Maccabaean mother and her seven sons – a story without a parallel for pathos and effect upon the heart, save in the case of Him who was the Author and Finisher of their faith. The “Seven,” tortured and slaughtered, one by one, before the eyes of her who bore them and nursed them in their infancy, died with her under God’s covenant of everlasting life, their noble mother cheering and sustaining them amid their agonies, then crowning the aceldama with her own triumphant death. With what calmness, holy resolution and courage of faith, they met their fate! “Thou, O persecutor, takest us out of this present life, but the King of the Ages will raise us up to life everlasting” – an allusion to Dan. 12: 1. “These bodies, this corruptible, we lay down for the sake of His laws, hoping to receive them again.” This they knew, that “God will restore to His saints their bodies when He shall raise to life the dead men of this nation, even the slain of His people” – an allusion to Isa. 26: 19. Sublime in moral heroism are the words of the seventh son, the other six already weltering in their blood: “And thou, O godless wretch, of all men most abominable, be not lifted up. Our brethren, having noe suffered a short pain, have died under the covenant of everlasting life, but thou shalt receive, through the judgment of God, the just punishment of thy presumption.” Already the fourth son had as calmly and solemnly spoken, “It is good being put to death by men, to look for hope from God, to be raised again, but, for thee, there shall be no resurrection unto eternal life” – an allusion to Isa. 26: 14. Then, lastly, the immortal mother who, in the ecstasy of immolation poured forth the full tide of her un-bosomed love and faith, and, slaughtered, fell on sleep to wake with her sons in the resurrection of the just. “Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord,” Rev. 14: 13; 2 Macc. 7: 1-12; 5 Macc. 1: 13. Thus did the Old Testament saints look to the second coming of Christ with the intensity of faith and ardour of expectation, that puts to shame the attitude of the Christian church to-day, with reference to that sublime and glorious event.
The holy Apostle Paul has embalmed the memory of these martyrs of the Law, and extolled their exploits with the unction of his inspiration. His heart heaves and his pen burns as he presents them to us for our imitation, crowned by the example of the blessed Jesus. “They waxed valiant in fight and turned to flight the armies of the aliens,” as did Judas Maccabaeus, scattering at one time 9,000 of the foe with only 1,500 men, at another 110,000 with only 8,000, the battle-cry on their lips, “God our Help!” “Victory from Jehovah!” “The Kingdom Forever!” – proof that the modern maxim, “God is on the side of the strongest battalions” is a lie! “Out of weakness they were made strong.” “They were tortured, not accepting deliverance (as was the fact with the mother and her seven sons) that they might obtain a better resurrection!” “Others had trial of cruel mockings, yea, moreover, of bonds and imprisonments.. They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, they were slain with the sword. They wandered about in sheep-skins and goat-skins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented, of whom the world was not worthy! They wandered in deserts and in mountains, and in dens and in caves of the earth! And all these” – the Old Testament heroes of the faith – “having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise (of life everlasting, never to die), God having provided some better thing for us (even Christ at both His comings) that they, without us, should not be made perfect” Heb. 11: 34-40.
These glorious martyrs of the Law at the close of the 3rd. prophetic empire – twice immortalized in the Scriptures – the prophet Daniel teaches us are the fore-runners of martyrs yet to be, at the close of the 4th. empire, under the last Antichrist, Dan. 7: 25; 9: 27; 12: 1, 7. The apostle Paul set them before the New Testament saints as examples to inspire their courage and lead to imitation of their fortitude – “a cloud of witnesses,” then beholding and now beholding our warfare and our race. He adds to them “Jesus,” the Christian proto-martyr, the Author and Finisher of the “faith” by which those heroes obtained a good report.
By such examples and the love of Christ, that “cloud” has been expanded to 20,000,000 martyrs more in New Testament times, the latest the brave Armenians who were “slain with the sword” rather than abjure their faith and accept the creed of Islam. The holy John assures us that the early Christian martyrs, also, were the forerunners of martyrs yet to be in the Time of the End, who will cheerfully drink – as did they – the Cup the Saviour drank, and be baptised with the baptism He was baptised with. And foremost shall be their glory, as foremost was their suffering. In that galaxy of saints shine a Stephen, Peter, Paul and James; a Polycarp, Ignatius, Irenaeus and Justin; a Wickliffe, Huss and Jerome of Prague; a Wishart and Hamilton; a Rogers, Cranmer, Latimer, Ridley and holy Bradford; with millions more, the victims of Antiochus, of Nero, of Torquemada, the Duke of Alva, Claverhouse and “Abdul the Dammed” – a happy fellowship, whose effulgence in the resurrection shall correspond to the sufferings by which they tested their loyalty and love. To comfort such, in view of the tribulation to come upon them, every apocalypse in both Testaments was given, without exception. To be among that blessed company, Paul desired that literally he might “be made conformed to the death of Christ, if by any means he might attain to the resurrection out from among the dead” Phil. 3: 10, 11, and nobly won his desire. 2 Tim. 4: 6. Of such, with special emphasis – sharers with the Maccabaean heroes – the Holy Spirit has said “the world was not worthy” – peerless souls whom God himself has “counted worthy of the Kingdom of God,” Heb. 11: 38; 2 Thess. 1: 5; while the “timid and unbelieving,” who “love their lives” and seek to “save” them, shall “lose” them and have their portion among “them that are without,” Rev. 21: 8; 22: 11.
“I saw, far down the coming time,
The fiery chastisement of crime,
With noise of mingling hosts, and jar
Of failing towers and shouts of war;
I saw the nations rise and fall
Like fire-gleams on the whitened wall;
I saw them draw the stormy hem
Who trembled at my warning word?
Who owned the prophet of the Lord?
O prophet of the beating heart,
For God’s great purpose set apart,
Before whose far-descending eyes
The future as the present lies,
Beyond a narrow-minded age
Stretches thy prophet’s heritage;
Through heaven’s dim spaces, angel-trod,
Through arches ‘round the throne of God!
Thy audience, worlds! – all time to be
The witness of the Truth in thee!”
(Daniel, Chapters 10-11 continued, - Chapter 11: 36-45: The Transition-Section; Various views; True View of the Type and Antitype; Place of the Great Interval between the Ends of the Third and Forth Empires; Photograph of the Antichrist; The Antichrist’s Last Campaign, and World’s Last Battle; “Time of the End;” The Three Greater Power in the Field; Occupation of Egypt; Invasion of Palestine; The Great Tribulation; Michael standing over the Jews; Angelic War in Heaven; Universal war on Earth; Joel’s Picture of the Scene; Zechariah’s; Isaiah’s; John’s; The Blood Bath; The Preparation of the Nations for the Struggle; The Military Budgets of Rushia, Germany, Austria, France, Italy; The Causes; The “Ever-recurring Law;” The Eastern Question, and its Solution.)
DANIEL, CHAPTERS 10-12. – TSABA GADOL. WARFARE GREAT.
TYPE AND ANTITYPE. EASTERN QUESTION.
The previous article dealt with the angel’s words, concerning the “Warfare Great,” as far as to the Maccabean period, viz., to 11: 35. The present deals with the remainder of 11 in connection with 12. The first thing here is
THE TRANSITION SECTION
V. Verses 11: 36-39. The death of Epiphanes is not recited at the close of 11: 30-35, B. C. 164, as it was given already in 8: 25, in the words “he shall be broken without hand.” The silence is doubtless due to the fact that type and antitype are blended in “the King,” 11: 36, continuing together through the section, until the one is displaced by the other at 11: 40. The exit of “the King,” the Antichrist, is expressed in the words “he shall come to his end and none shall help him,” 11: 45. “His end” here, is “his end” in 9: 26, i.e., the end of the “prince that shall come.”
The vital question that decides the division of the chapter from 11: 21, onward to the end, is how much refers to Antiochus, and how much to the Antichrist? We encounter it at verses 21, 36, and 40. It is (1) whether from 21 to the end of the chapter, all relates to Antiochus; or (2) all to the last Antichrist; or (3) all to both; or (4) whether 21-35 relates to Antiochus alone, and 36-45 to the Antichrist alone. These views exhaust the history of the interpretation. The first was held by Porphyry in ancient times, - and is held by the higher critics. The second was held by Jerome and some of the church fathers, the Interval between Seleucus IV., 11: 20, and the Antichrist being placed between 20 and 21. The third view was next held by Jerome also, Theodoret and others two senses, the literal and typical allowed in order to include both Epiphanes and the Antichrist. Only in this sense was it that Jerome asked “Suppose these things are said od Antiochus, what harm comes to our religion?” The fourth view, viz., partly to Epiphanes, 21-35, and partly to the Antichrist, 36-45, was that of the learned Jews of Jerome’s time, and which he himself was inclined to adopt. The fifth, viz., only 40-45 relates to the Antichrist, arose after the rise of Mohammed in the line of his successors, as the Antichrist, on the year-day theory.
As to the first view – all to Antiochus – it is excluded by the fact that nothing in the career of Antiochus corresponds to this campaign of 40-45; that Porphyry’s assertion to the contrary is void of all support; that the fancy that the three campaigns of Antiochus against Egypt, and the two against Palestine, in 23-35, are here “recapitulated” is absurd, as Jerome himself discovered, since never at any time did Antiochus march through Palestine, as “the King” here does 11: 41, to invade Egypt, but only entered Palestine on his “return” from Egypt to Antioch, 11: 28, 30, - besides never having “the Libians and Ethipians at his steps.” As to the second view – all to the Antichrist – it is excluded by this, that the “Vile Person,” 11: 21, is the immediate successor of Seleucus IV. in 11: 20 B.C. 175., i.e.., stands up “in his estate,” therefore cannot be the last Antichrist at the close of Gentile times. There is no interval, therefore, between 20 and 21. As to the third view – all to both – it is excluded by this, that the features peculiar to the Antichrist, and not found in Antiochus (and such are admitted, especially his self-exaltation “above every god,”) cannot be common to Both. As to the fourth view, viz., partly to Antiochus, 21-35, and partly to the Antichrist, 39-45, it is certain (1) that the term “the King” is here first used absolutely, apart from the qualifying adjunct, “of the North,” and is connected immediately with a description of absolute atheism in its extremest form, which was not true of Antiochus; (2) that, in verse 40, the pronoun “him” in the clause “push at him,” – and “him” in the clause “come against him,” – and “he” in the clause, “he shall enter,” all refer to “the King” in 36, the antitype of Antiochus, as do all the pronouns “He,” “His,” “Him,” in all the verses following. Keil, holding the common view, has endeavoured to dispute the above, but unsuccessfully against Kliefoth, who with others has victoriously defended it; (3) that the “warfare Great” ends only with the final deliverance of the Jews from the grasp of “the King” in 36, and with the resurrection of the holy dead, 12: 1, at the coming of the Son of Man, and the King’s destruction, 7: 13; (4) that “the Time of the End” 11: 40, is identical with “at that time” in 12: 1, and therefore, “the King” in 36, is the “Him,” “He,” “His” in 40-45, who is destroyed at the second coming of Christ. A greater than Antiochus is here! The identity of this blaspheming atheist with the last Antichrist is established by Paul, in 2 Thess. 2: 1-12, and by John, Rev. 13: 5-7, incontrovertibly. Therefore did Hyppolytus, the ablest and first real exegete of the early church, say: “Here is the Antichrist in 11: 36, 37.” So did the Jews believe, and Jerome say of them, “The Jews maintain that the things here spoken relate to the Antichrist,” adding further, “Our writers hold that the things here predicted relate to the Antichrist.” As to the fifth view that only 40-45 refers to the Antichrist, it is excluded by the above considerations, while yet it remains true that 40-45 refers solely to him and not to Antiochus.
The only question, therefore, is this, viz., if 36-39 is the transition-section, including a double personality, type and antitype in one description, where is the Interval between these two persons, i.e., between Antiochus and the Antichrist. Is it between 35 and 36, or 39 and 40? The answer made by the most patient specialists, and supported by the strongest arguments from men of opposite schools is for example that “the section, 11: 40-45, cannot be explained of Antiochus, in any way, and the Interval must lie between verse 39 and 40.” (Dornstetter.) “The transition is at verse 36, and the interval lies between 39 and 40.” (Tiefenthal.) Even Cornill, like Kuenen, Hitzig, Bevan, Behrmann, confess that the section cannot be referred to anything known in the history of Antiochus. “I hold such an explanation to be impossible. It is excluded by the structure of the whole chapter which gives a clear chronological succession of campaigns and events from Cyrus to Antiochus. A leap backwards at 11: 40, in order to make a resume, is unknown to prophecy and inconceivable at its culminating point. The words ‘And in the time of the End’ denote progress in events, not regress in discourse, and are decisive against it.” (Cornill.) Nor, again, can 40-45 be a fourth campaign of Antiochus, since the tyrant was expelled from Egypt, by Roman force, B.C. 168, and “ever after, Egypt was under Roman protection” (Welzhofer), until it was “deeded as a farm, by will, to the Roman people and in vain was sought to be revived to Cleopayra by Caesar and Antony,” (Mariette). Moreover, the battle of Pydna, B.C. 168, shattered forever the Syrian power. What then? Shall we say, as a last resort that 40-45 is the dream of a Maccabean writer, not yet informed of the death of Antiochus, and forecasting an imaginary future for him? Porphyry spurned that idea, “Such exposition is the last resort of rationalistic criticism.” (Wolf). “The probability of a resume is an improbability, the dream of a possible fourth campaign is the dream of an impossibility, and the resort of an imagination of a Maccagean Jew is only what we might expect from a criticism which itself is a dream” (Herzfeld). It remains, therefore, that 40-45 is a true prediction, and that the interval between Antiochus and the Antichrist, lies between verses 39 and 40. That interval stretches from B.C 164 to A.D. 1898 [2,011], and is 2061 years [+113], or 237 years greater than the interval in 9: 26, between A.D. 70 and 1898; an interval of 1,827 years. At 9: 40, we take farewell to Antiochus forever, and are transported into the “Time of the End” of our present age. Here, we rest with confidence, as to the interpretation. Jerome’s words are conclusive of the mature judgment of the early church. “Our writers hold that the things here predicted relate to the Antichrist.” Fraidi’s words are conclusive as to the judgment of the Middle Age, “The judgment of antiquity was that of the centuries following.” Dusterwald’s words are conclusive as to modern times, “All, save the rationalists, hold that verses 40-45 pertain to the Antichrist.” As to the contents of the section before us, we come, now, to the
PHOTOGRAPH OF THE ANTICHRIST
surpasses that of Antichus in 8,
bad as that is, and transcends all historical
accounts of the Syrian tyrant. The
angel paints in bold relief the three predominating characteristics of “the King.”
(1) His atheistic self-deifying egotism and blaspheming
indeed, stood up against the
“Prince of princes,”
Jehovah, and opposed him, 8:
25, but it is
not said that he exalted himself “above
or blasphemed the “God of gods,”
refused to “regard any god,”
said of “the King,”
in 11: 36, 37.
Here is an atheism so absolute as to smite every Pantheon
every ethnic god, as well as Jehovah.
Epiphanes, however, was not “Atheos” in an ethnic
a title to his line, as “Divus”
did to Caesars. He
worshipped Olympian Zeus, set up his
ANTICHRIST’S LAST CAMPAIGN.
VI Verses 11: 40-45. It is only in his military character the Antichrist is here presented, and it is only a section of the world-wide “Warefare Great” that is here given; that which pertains to the final struggle of the Jews for the re-possession of their land, and their final deliverance from Gentile power. The time is called the “Time of the End.”
whatever sense the words “at
that time” in 12:
1, are taken, - a sense determined by the events described
in 1-3, in the
same sense the “Time of the End”
40-45 must be taken, because the “Time of
the End” here, is “that
there. The two are
one, and the events of 11:
contemporate with those in 12:
Deliverance of Israel and the resurrection from the dead directly
with the destruction of “the King,”
No interval exists between 11: 45,
and 12: 1. The “Time
of the End” here, is not the “Time
of the End” in 11:
35, and 8: 25,
viz., that of the third empire, the Greek,
but is clearly that of the fourth in its ten kingdomed state, the Roman. Nor is the expression “the Time of the End” the
same as the “End of Time.” It does not denote the end
nor of the planet, nor of nations, but the end of our present age, the
week itself in 9: 27,
the last half of which
is seen in 7: 25,
and 12: 7.
It is the time when the Antichrist will make a “covenant,” or “treaty,”
with the Jews, granting them a modus
vivendi, in their own land,
with civil rights, and permission to revive their ancient worship, then
suddenly soon after because of some important event in their history
threatens his own empire, perhaps their effort to gain their
the conversion of the remnant, violate his “covenant,”
11: 27, and “on
wing of abomination,” because their bitterest enemy,
such means he
accelerates his own destruction.
Coincident with his last campaign in the first campaign of
“Gog and Magog,”
led by the “Prince of Rosh,
Meshech, and Tubal,” and
connected with the defeat of both Gog and the Antichrist, and with the
“Time of the
End” is of the intensest interest, as it brings to the end
with the momentous
events that follow. The
predicts that, of all the “Powers”
then in the field, three
shall be prominent, (1) the “King
of the South” who is not Ptolemy
Philometor, but the power holding Egypt, the horizon of the South in
days extending to the Nile-sources, as in Isa. 18,
and Zephaniah 3;
(2) the “King of the North,”
who is not Antiochus Epiphanes,
but the power ruling the North, the horizon extending beyond the
in Ezek. 38;
the East reaching beyond the
Euphrates, as in Revelation
16, the West
beyond the Mediterranean, again in Ezek.
(3) “The king” of 11: 36, the antitype of
Antiochus, viz., the
Antichrist; that in “The time of
the power ruling the South, shall “push”
at “the King” of 11: 36, that is, cross
swords with him, (compare 8:
4, 6), and open the great campaign; that the
power ruling the North, - mighty, abundant in horses, wheeled armament,
ships, a great naval and military power, strong in cavalry, - shall
cycloning “against him,”
“King” of 11:
36; that, notwithstanding these demonstrations, “the King” will mobilize his
forces “enter into the countries”
round about, “overthrow”
12); in short, that entering Palestine from the north, his
line of march
will be southward through Palestine, subjecting the insurrectionary
here as elsewhere being “overthrown”;
that, nevertheless, the transjordanic regions occupied by Israel when
first entered the Holy Land, viz., Edom, Moah, and the chief city of
“shall be delivered out of his hands,”
– lands called by Isaiah “the
(i.e., mountains) of the
in this crisis by returning Israel, (compare Isa.
11: 11-16); - that, notwithstanding this, “the King” shall enter
Egypt, and the tribes of North and
South Africa shall flock to his standard, and “Egypt
shall not be able to deliver itself,” and that the
Egypt shall be at the King’s command.
This, the first result to the power
further, the angel predicts that, “at that time,”
a spectacle unparalleled
in magnificence, and followed by events incomparable in importance for
kingdom of God, shall take place; that the “Warfare
Great” shall extend itself to the unseen world; that “Michael the great prince that standeth
for the children of
thy people” (Daniel’s people, the Jews), shall “stand over” them, and there
shall be “War in Heaven,”
12: 7, a battle of battles in aerial regions between the
powers of light
and darkness, a conflict of principalities and powers leagued for
Israel’s destruction, with angelic hosts leagued for Israel’s
defence; an onset by “Michael
and his angels,”
against the “Dragon and his
a warfare against “the hosts of
the high ones on
high,” as well as against “the
of the earth on the earth,” Isa. 24:
21; heaven, earth, sea, dry land, all nations, shaken; -
above, commotion below, commotion everywhere, and specially in
we learn that
Michael’s standing “over”
to the fulfilment of the vision, enough has
been said already, to show its impossibility in the time of Antiochus. Up to 1898, [now
2011] – all the
prophecies of Daniel save
the remainder of the interval from 1898 to the 70 th. week, and the 70
itself, have met their literal accomplishment in the exactest and
manner. This alone,
future. That it was
in the age of
this last crisis is impending, is
whole world is
preparing for the last act in the tragedy of the “Warfare Great.”
Christendom is already one vast militarl camp and naval
depot. The son of
Pethuel is again on his
watchtower, blowing the trumpet in
“Proclaim ye this among the nations. Prepare war. Wake up the mighty men. Let all the men of war draw near. Let them come up. Haste ye, and come, all ye nations round about and assemble yourselver together.” This the summons.
“Thither cause thy mighty ones to come down, O Lord!” This the prayer.
“Let the nations
bestir themselves, and come up to the
THE LORD TO HIS HOSTS.
“Put ye in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come; tread ye; for the wine-press is full, the vats overflow, for their wickedness is great.” This the order.
THE PROPHET A SPECTATOR.
Multitudes! In the
Such the solemn scene, where the Antichrist is judged and Gentile politics and power go down in blackness and blood. The same scene is given in Isaiah 59: 19-21, and 66: 5-16; in Dan. 7: 9-14; in Zeph. 3: 8-20; in Zech. 12: 2-14; 13: 1; in 14: 1-11. It is given in Matt. 25: 31-46. It is the scene of the sickle-judgment, and the winepress with “Blood up to the horses’ bridles” in Rev. 14: 12-20, and of “Heaven Opened” for the Antichrist’s destruction, in Rev. 19: 11-21. It follows the Armageddon rendezvous in Rev. 16: 12-16, and is the end of the “Warfare Great” when the Son of Man comes to “take away the Sultanate” of the Horn, and “consume and destroy it to the end.” Dan. 7: 26. All the prophets, Christ and His apostles, have looked to this “End” of our age.
the nations are “preparing.”
History is the afterclap of which prophecy is the
fore-stroke; the echo of
which prophecy is the voice. The
growth of modern armies and the man-killing power of their weapons, the
destructive enginery of modern warfare by land and sea, during the last
five years is appalling. The augmented war-material and armies swollen
all precedent, in times of peace, are the omen of disaster to the world. They are the presage of
the judgment day
on all nations, no arbitration can arbitrate away.
The guilt of Christendom must meet its
condemnation of the
“Christian Nations” is their military strength. … The causes
of this vast “military Christendom of the Nineteenth Centuary” are
familiar to all; the advance of science in destructive agencies, mutual
distrust of the nations, their rivalries and jealousies, treachery and
of treaties, balance of power, the peace of Europe, enormous increase
wealth, expansion of commerce, the fact that resistless power knows no
law, the ambition of Europe to divide the non-Christian nations,
and Africa, and control the mines and markets of the world, lust for
want of righteousness, the discontent of the masses, the increase of
and crime, and the corruption of Gentile politics and power. Add to those the
apprehension of a
collision between the East and West, and the coming struggle with
Judiasm, and each other. The
prelude to that will be the apparent harmony of the “Powers” of the world for a
period of time, - the
“silence for the space of half
an hour, in heaven,”
the “four angels holding back
the solemn hush when the air is breathless and leaves are motionless;
thunder-burst of Judgment! At
war! Come up to the
is not for nothing that the histories of the
“Seven Great Monarchies” and the hundred histories of the
“People Israel,” and of the “Religion of Israel,” and
the “Explorations in Palestine,” have been written in these last
days, and the scholarship of modern times been called to exert itself
Testament studies as never before.
The “Future” has become the theme of existing interest. What means the unexampled
to-day, in the “Maps and Survey of Palestine,” in such books as
“The Recovery of Jerusalem,” the “History of
is with some providential intent the labours
of a Curtius and Grote, a Stanley and Rawlinson, a Mueller and
Meyer and Brandis, have drawn attention to the “laws of historical
development,” and shown how the destiny of the Jews affects the destiny
of all nations, and that “in the near future, the world may expect to
the operation of the law, more powerfully than ever.”
The “Powers” will not be
allowed of God to continue their concert of crime perpetually, for
benefit, and the hindrance of the
“Then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And, except those days should be shortened, no flesh should be saved; but, for the elect’s sake, those days shall be shortened.”
Matt. 24: 21, 22.
“Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father; who hath ears to hear, let him hear.”
Matt. 13: 43.
“Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial that is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you. But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, ye may be glad with exceeding joy.” 1 Pet. 4: 12, 13; 1: 7.
“When the Lord shall build up
“Appear to your joy.” Isa. 66: 5.
“THY WORD IS TRUTH,” John 17: 17.
(Daniel, Chapter 12, - Conclusion of the Prophecy; Definition of the Time; Intervention of Michael; The Great Tribulation; The Deliverance of the Jews; The Resurrection of the Holy Dead; Splendour of the Risen Saints; Life Everlasting; Completion and Authentication of Daniel’s Book; Study of the Book in the “Time of the End”; The Epilogue; The Higher Criticism; Perplexity of Daniel; Its Solution; First Dismissal of the Prophet from the Scene; Extension of the “Time of the End;” The 1290 and 1335 Days; The Blessed Time; Second Dismissal of the Prophet; The Promise of the Prophet’s Resurrection; Christ, Glory, the Kingdom, the End – Our Hope.)
DANIEL, CHAPTERS 10-12. – END OF THE WARFARE GREAT. THE GREAT TRIBULATION.
The chapter falls into three divisions: (1) the Conclusion of the prophecy, 12: 1-3; (2) The Completion of the Book of Daniel, 12: 4; (3) the Epilogue or closing Vision, 12: 5-13.
The Conclusion of the Prophecy, 12:
These verses disclose in what way the constancy and faith
people will be tried in the final crisis, by what means the Lord will
converted Israel from their apostate brethren, Isa.
66: 5, and how he will break in pieces the oppressor and
deceit and violence the souls of the poor and needy, Psa.
72: 4, 13, 14. The
The Definition of the “Time”
of the events. It
that time,” 11:
40, when the
Antichrist camps on Mount Moriah, 11:
hence neither in the times of Antuiochus, nor of Titus, since it is
followed by the “Great
that next precedes the Coming of Christ.
Dan. 7: 13, 25;
12: 1-3, 7; Matt. 24: 15-29;
2 Thess. 1: 6, 7; 2: 1-12; Rev. 13: 5; 19: 11-21; 20: 1-6. It will be “such a time as never was”
prior to A.D. 33, when
our Lord made this statement, therefore not in the times of Antiochus; “No, nor ever shall be”
prior to the days
immediately before His Second Coming, therefore not in the times of
character of the time is faithfully
delineated by our Lord as corresponding to Antedilvian and Sodomite
times. “As it was
in the days of Noah,” and of “Lot,” Luke 17: 26-37. The Gospel [of
the Kingdom] will
have gone, as a testimony, to
all nations, and Christendom, the field full of Tares and Wheat, will
burdened with “scandals”
“taken out” by the
13: 41. Modern
Civilization will have done their best and worst, and amid
lawlessness, church-defection, and a world in war,
The intervention of Michael in behalf of
if the conflict is aerial, it is also
terrestrial, and chiefly in the Holy Land, where “the nations are gathered against
(3) The Great Tribulation. “There shall be a time of Trouble such as never was since there was a nation, even to that same time,” 12: 1. Of this, much has already been said. It is that period of affliction described so graphically and so frequently in both Testaments, by Moses, Deut. 32: 39-43; by Balaam, Num. 24: 23, 24; by Isaiah, 26: 8-21; 59: 16-21; 66: 5-16; by Jeremiah, 30: 7; by Ezekiel, 38: 1-23; 39: 1-29; by Joel, 3: 9-16; by Zephaniah, 3: 8; by Zechariah, 12: 1-14; 13: 1; 14: 1-5; by our Lord, Matt. 24: 15, 28; by Paul, 2 Thess. 1: 6, 7; and by John, Rev. 3: 10; 7: 14; 11: 7; 12: 12; 13: 1-18, covering the second half of the Apocalypse from chapter 12 to 20. Here is found the formal condemnation of all the modern optimistic schemes, social theories, and wide-spread false teaching, that looks for the reform of the whole world and conversion of the nations before the Second Coming of Christ. If we ask the Prophets, Christ and His Apostles, what they expected in the Future, after the Gospel seed had been scattered all over the earth, their reply will be found to be one and harmonious. By the side of the Wheat, Satan’s seed, the Tares, will occupy the field of the world “together” till the Lord comes. During the Times of the Gentiles Israel will remain in unbelief. Along with the progress of Christianity, externally waxing to a power in the world, and allying itself with governments and states, shall go prosperity, internal corruption and decay, a deepening departure from the faith, as the last times draw near – antichristianity at last ascendant, the world controlling the Church, false teaching, false Messiahs, false culture and civilization, crime universal, the faithful a “little flock” to whom it is “the Father’s good pleasure to give the kingdom.” The great apostasy in Christendom shall culminate in the Antichrist, and bring the crisis of the “Warfare Great,” viz., the “Great Tribulation,” the world still “lying in the Wicked One.” They looked for all this, and for the return of the Jews to their own land, their conversion in the midst of the crisis, and the Second Coming of Christ to put an end to the whole disorder and bring His Kingdom of righteousness and truth to victory. No other future than this is found in the Sacred Scriptures, save the Millennial Age and the final New Heaven and Earth, both which follow the Advent of the Son of Man in clouds. The triumph of the Kingdom comes only to those who, faithful to Christ, pass through this Tribulation, and, sealed by His Spirit, are “overcomers” who have “gotten the victory over the Beast and His Image, his Mark, and the Number of his Name,” even as before in earley times, Rev. 15: 2; 20: 4. The unwritten in the Book of Life “worship the Beast” and perish in his punishment. Rev. 13: 8. The conversion and reform of the whole world before the Second Advent is a human fiction, contradicted by both Testaments.
Daniel’s Book the Tribulation, though universal,
is confined to the Jews and the Holy Land, the election out of
The Deliverance. “Thy
people shall be delivered,” 12: 1,
i.e., at the close of the Great Tribulation, 12: 7;
7: 25-27; 9: 27. Here
proof conclusive that the final gathering of living Israel, and the
resurrection of Israel’s holy dead, are contemporaneous events at the
close of the Great Tribulation, Dan.
and that “our gathering together
is at the same time-point as Israel’s Deliverance, viz., at the close
the 70th. week.
2 Thess. 2: 1-3. This promise of the
Deliverance of the
ancient as Moses and
runs through both Testaments. Not
exempted from trial, or even martyrdom, yet the “Remnant”
shall not be destroyed. Sealed
God, kept safe from the power of temptation, delivered out of all their
troubles, as were their fathers before them, they shall be overcomers
the blood of the Lamb. “Alas, for the day is great, so great
that none is like it; it
is the time of Jacob’s trouble but he shall be saved out of it.” Jer. 30: 7. Accounted worthy to escape
licentiousness, drunkenness, surfeiting, cares of this life and snares
antichristian time, and the judgments to fall on the ungodly, they
a faultless company, with their Redeemer, on the earthly “
Remarkable is the space given to
deliverance will be miraculous, (1) by the
personal appearing of the Son of Man, first of all in the clouds of
heaven Dan. 7: 13;
(2) in the next place, “His feet
shall stand on the Mount of Olives,”
and a way of escape for the Jews be provided by earthquake shocks,
the mountain, Zech. 14: 10; (3) by the tripartition of
previously, its fall of “one
of it, and the engulfment of “7000
men of name,”
the supporters of the Antichrist; Rev.
(4) by the destruction of the Antichrist and his hosts “outside the city,” Rev.
14: 20; Dan. 9: 27; 7: 26; 12: 7; 2 Thess. 2: 8; Rev. 19: 11;
as stated, by the coming of the Lord to “Zion,”
the last military station where the Antichrist encamped, Dan. 11: 45.
It will be an elect deliverance even of “as
many as are written in the book,” Dan.
12: 1; “the holy,
every one written among
the living in Jerusalem,” Isa.
the surviving: “We who are alive
and remain unto
the coming of the Lord,” even as in the case of Gentile
who have just been caught away, 1
Thess. 4: 17. It
will be a spiritual deliverance of
The Resurrection of the Holy Dead.
Not only shall living
idea, therefore, of a Secret Parousia for
the resurrection of the holy dead, prior to the appearing of the Son of
the clouds of heaven at the close of the tribulation, is contrary to
of God. To this
time-point of the
revelation of Christ in His glory, to raise the dead, deliver
The Splendour of the Risen Saints.
be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and they that
turned the many to righteousness, as the stars forever and ever,”
The angel employes two words nowhere else found in the Old
(1) Hayi Olam, life everlasting,
to die no more, and (2) Hizhir,
shine, from Zohar, splendour. This last one is
beautifylly rendered by
the German word Himmelglanz, the
gleam of Heaven. Moses
the firmament as a “sapphire
beneath the feet of the God of Israel, “the
of heaven in its clearness;” Exodus
34: 10, and Elihu compares it to a “molten
mirror.” Shining with undimmed resplendency. Job 37: 18. Ezekiel describes it as “an appearance of brightness as the look
of the brightness of
burnished gold,” Ezek.
8: 2. To
the golden sheen the angel adds the
incandescent glory of the “stars,”
literally of the “glitterers.” Our Lord and Paul allude
expressions in their brilliant language when speaking of the
its different degrees of glory, Matt.
13: 43; 1
Cor. 15: 41. An
the reality, we have in the Transfiguration of the Lord in the “holy mount,” when “His face did shine as the Sun, and His
raiment was white as the light.”
Matt 17: 21, “white
as snow and glistering,” Mark
Luke 9: 30. What
teaches is that the wise shall shine like the crystal sheen of the
firmament, and the converters of the many to righteousness shall glow
glitter of the stars in a cloudless canopy.
Still more, their effulgence shall be
eternal – a glory un-obscured forever, 12:
Degrees of glory
there will be, even as the three in Orion’s belt excel in magnitude and
glory the lesser stars of the constellation.
The transfiguration of the living will
equal that of the dead. The
extends the splendour of all the “righteous.” Matt. 13: 40. Allusion is here doubtless
Maccabean teachers of the law, in 11:
but the prophecy includes the whole sacramental host of God’s elect,
share the glory ready to be revealed.
All who are instrumental in the salvation of the many will
with surpassing brightness.
Eminent, the martyrs of Jesus will shine, saints who have
not deemed as
dear to them their lives, for Jesus’ sake.
Rev. 20: 4;
14: 13; 2 Thess. 1: 5; Heb. 11: 35-39; Rev. 12: 11; 2 Tim. 4: 6-8. Such the “out-resurrection.” Phil. 3: 11. If a splendour so great
for the body alone – even to be glorified like Christ, whose brightness
Paul tells us eclipsed the noon-day sun – is the reward of a
so brief, then indeed the sorest afflictions are but as the puncture of
and the longest but as a moment – not worthy to be compared with the
“far more exceeding and eternal
weight of glory.” Rom. 8: 18. Earth never wore a diadem
so royal as
that composed of risen saints. The
eloquence of all the antiquity, or modern times, has furnished no
equal to this conclusion of the prophecy; a scene so imposing, majestic
impressive; so sanctifying and sublime; so solemn and subduing! We have seen the rainbow
braided on the
brow of the dying storm, but here a glory-crown of saints, the jewelled
of God, is placed upon the head of the dark Tribulation itself – a
that can never vanish from the soul of the believer.
How quick the transit from the cross to
the crown, from shame to honour, from suffering to glory! The end of the “Warfare Great” is the
outburst of an
illumination which celebrates a victory for the
II. The Completion of Daniel’s Book. The great prophecy of Daniel is now ended. The whole future has been disclosed to the Second Coming of Christ, and now the angel issues his order to the prophet. “But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words and seal the Book, even to the time of the end.” 12: 4, i.e., (1) to the end of the third empire, and (2) to the end of the fourth. By the “words” is meant the words of the last revelation just given, viz., chapters 10: 11, 12: 1-3. By the “book,” the whole Book of Daniel, from first to last. By “shut up the words” is meant, bind them with the rest of the parchments, as part of the Book. By “seal the book” is meant, attach to the roll the official seals of its authentication, and deposit the same in the archives of the Jewish nation, as part of Holy Scripture. Preserve it for the warning and comfort of God’s people. This does not mean that its contents shall remain inaccessible to the High Priest or to teachers of the people. The order relates alone to the preservation of the original text. It was the custom of the prophets, before binding the separate parchments, to transcribe copies for the public use, from which still others were transcribed by official hands, under penalties for error. Thus the Book of Daniel descended to the Jews, in a standard text, with which all copies could be compared as the near “time of the end” approached. The order of the angel implies no less than this, that Daniel was the author of the whole book, most of which was written during the exile and its finisher in post-exile times, during the Persian reign.
The Prediction of the Study of the Book in
the “Time of the End.” “Many
shall run to and fro, and the knowledge shall be increased.” Dan. 12: 4. This explains the reason
order. A long
period will intervene
between now and then, and only then will the contents of the book be
understood, therefore “seal the
that a sure and standard text may be preserved.
Proof conclusive, again, that the book
was written long before the Maccabean times.
That it existed then and was studied
with unabated interest, is established by the indisputable testimonies. That it is studied to-day,
yet more than
ever, is a sign of the nearing “time
of the end.” By
the words “run to and fro”
is meant, not “modern
locomotion,” nor “missionary enterprise,” nor “rushing
here and there,” but the diligent perusal of the book with intensity
earnestness, by the method of turning forward and backward its pages,
prophecy with prophecy, in order to understand its contents. The angel means that, as
the “time of the end”
approaches, whether the near or
far horizon, “multitudes”
devote themselves to a study of the book, and come to the “inner
perception” (the knowledge) of its meaning.
Light will burst forth as
IV. The Epilogue or Closing Vision. 12: 5-13. With the termination of the order, what we have is
The sudden change of the scene; and not
without some deep significance. The
linen-clothed-man reappears, hovering over the Hiddekel to which the
the Nile – “Yeor”
– is given, as if to remind
(2) The dialogue between the linen-clothed man and one of the “two” – a conversation introduced for Daniel’s benefit. One of the “two” asks the linen-clothed man “How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?” 12: 6, i.e., how long from the invasion of Palestine by the Antichrist, 11: 40, to the Resurrection, the Deliverance, and the Kingdom of Glory? The two-fold answer is (1) that “a time, two times, and half a time,” 1260 days, shall be the length of the time, and (2) that the end will be signalized by the fact that whatever “power” the Jews may have in the last days, it shall be broken, the Jews helpless in the hands of the Antichrist, with whom they make alliance. Anti-semitism will wax to triumph among the “powers,” in spite of the counter movement to rehabilitate the Jewish state. Deut. 32: 16-24; Dan. 12: 7. Both hands uplifted to heaven, the Linen-clothed Man awears in the presence of the “Other Two,” and “by Him that liveth forever,” that not one syllable of the prophecy shall fail, but that all shall be accomplished. The last Invasion of the Holy Land shall take place, the Great Tribulation shall come, the Jews shall be driven to the wall, Michael shall stand up, the holy dead shall be raised, Israel be delivered, and the Antichrist destroyed. By the life of God, these things shall be so! This is tremendous adjuration. See Deut. 32: 40-43; Rev. 10: 5-7. It was not without intense significance the angel had said in 8: 26, that “the vision is truth;” in 10: 1, that “the word is truth;” in 10: 21, that Daniel’s book is a “Scripture of truth;” and declares in 11: 2, “I will show thee the truth.” And not without the same deep significance does he further admonish the prophet, yea, command him, to “close the words,” and “seal the book,” 11: 4, and declares them “closed and sealed to the time of the end,” 12: 9. Yea, more, he crowns the whole with an oath, “by the living God,” – both hands held up – that “all these things shall be accomplished,” i.e., that none of them is fiction! In the name of all that is sacred and solemn, why does the angel thus repeat himself, exhausting all sanctions, angelic, human and divine? If the writer of the book is not a pious impostor, the whole book is true as God is true, and not a Maccabean novel, as our modern Higher Critics would have it. No other book in all the Bible, save John’s apocalypse, has such a weight of attestation, Rev. 22: 18, 19. The “Vision” is “Truth,” the “Revelation,” the “Writing” of it, the very “words,” the “book” itself, - all is “Truth,” God-sent, angel-given, Spirit-breathed, everlasting “Truth,” closed, sealed, authenticated, and attested by angels, sworn to by the Lord himself, and transmitted to our times to be studied with the intensest interest. Had criticism any conscience of fear of God before its eyes, it would quail in the presence of such transcendant confirmation. God the Almighty, thundering from heaven, could give no stronger demonstration of its verity. It has the sanction of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, angels, prophets, Christ and His apostles, to its Chiliastic doctrine, and is established by no less than 2,500 years of human history.
The Perplexity of the Prophet. “I heard,
but I understood not. Then
O my Lord and what shall the Afterness
of these things be?”
12: 8. What was it he did not
he declares, he “understands the
vision,” 10: 1. What perplexed
him was the definition of the time, given by the Linen-Clothed Man in 12: 7.
His soul had been riveted upon the Maccabean persecution, 11: 30-35; the tyrant’s
character, 11: 26-39,
and the invasion of the
(4) First Dismissal of the Prophet. “Go thy way, Daniel, for the words are closed up and sealed to the time of the end,” 12: 9. Tenderly the angel declines to protract the Revelation. He recurs to the thought in 12: 4, expanding it. “Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried, but the Wicked shall do wickedly. And none of the Wicked shall understand, but the Wise shall understand,” 12: 10. Two classes of persons there shall be in the time of the end, the “Wicked” and the “Wise.” The world will not all be converted to Christ. Moreover the Wicked, in spite of the Day of the Lord, will continue to practice wickedness. The tribulation that refines the saints will only incrustate the ungodly. The fire that purifies the gold will only harden the clay. For that reason the Wicked will neither study nor understand the Book of Daniel, but the Wise will do both. Clear to their “inner perception” will be the necessity of the tribulation to sift God’s saints from the world-loving and unbelieving professors of religion, and to test their fidelity.
(5) The Extension of the Time. “And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away and the abomination that maketh desolate be set up, there shall be 1290 days. Blessed is he that waiteth and cometh to the 1335 days,” 12: 11, 12. This much the angel concedes to Daniel’s further curiosity. The italuicised words here, and in the section above, are found also in 8: 12, 13, and 11: 31, 35, where the vision treats of Antiochus. From this fact certain interpreters, both evangelical and rationalistic, conclude that the whole section in 12: 8-13, refers to the times of that tyrant. Undoubtedly, there is an allusion here to time past, since the angel has already carried the prophet, in 12: 7, into the remote future. But a prediction of the future in terms of retrospective allusion to a prophecy, which itself is typical of the far future, in no way loses its own futurity. The common use of the same terms to express different stages in the development of both prophecy and history, is frequent as it is necessary. It springs from the organic and typical relations of prophecy and history alike. One epoch becomes the mirror of another.
answer, in 12: 9-13,
to Daniel’s question in 12:
8, is a word explaining something of the
“afterness” of the
1260 days. Moreover,
the angel has already told
Daniel, in 9: 27,
that “a prince to come,”
at the seventieth week, would
come “on wing of abomination,”
allowing to the Jews, by treaty, the practice of their “daily sacrifice,” and would
break their covenant
in the middle of the week. The
deeds of Antiochus would be repeated, substantially, yet in variant
form. “An abomination” – not the
would be set up, perhaps the image of the Antichrist himself, Rev. 13: 14.
The “time of the end”
be extended first to thirty, then to forty five days more beyond the
1260. Then the “Blessed”
time would come. That
no “blessed” time,
such as here predicted for
Israel, followed the “cleansing
of the temple,”
either 1290 or 1335 days after the act of Judas Maccabaeus, is evident
Maccabean history. The
remained in the hands of the foe.
Two whole years of foreign armies, 100,000 strong,
more increasingly, the ablest interpreters
regard the thirty days, following the 1260, as the period of
the time will be, and “blessed”
man who lives or wakes to see it, when the Lord will “appear in His glory and build up Zion,”
“gathering the outcasts, healing
the broken in heart, and
binding their wounds,” only a pen dipped in prophetic fire
describe. The angel
benediction and beatitude on the heirs of the kingdom, whom he calls “waiters” for it. And myriads such there are
notwithstanding “blindness in
part has happened
Second Dismissal of the Prophet. “Go thou
thy way til the end shall be, for thou shalt rest.” 12: 13.
The lingering prophet, loth to leave is
again admonished to retire. It
hard to part. But “Go thou!”
The Glorious One who hovered over the Hiddekel has gone! The “two
others” are gone! The
vision fades. “Go thou thy way,” the way
of the righteous. “Go till
the end shall be” – the end of life, with all its cares
– “for thou shalt rest”
– a holy repose, entering into peace, thy body in its bed, thy spirit
– “walking in uprightness before
God.” Isa. 57: 2. Rest till the end of
weary way. Finish
the Book. Discharge
what remains of the duties of
life. Dismiss all
will come, and
though rejected, will come again and be accepted.
The promise of the Prophet’s
Resurrection. “Thou shalt stand in thy lot at the end
of the days,”
The transition from a reclining posture to one of
standing, implies a
the term “lot” is
meant the portion of the righteous.
The allusion here is to the
redistribution of the
Age of Gold, which a blind tradition
has placed in the past, lies before us.
But first a
(Summation, Objections, Conclusion; General Teaching of Daniel’s Book; The Passing away of all Kingdoms and Empires; Resume of the Main Features of Daniel’s Book; The Design of the Judgment of the Nations; God’s Name Sanctified, His Will done on Earth as in Heaven; Connection between Eschatology and the Messiah-doctrine; Objections to Daniel’s Doctrine; Reply: The Sequence of the Kingdom in Victory upon the Second Advent; Curosities of Opposite View; Character of the Millennial Kingdom; Reign of the Saints on the Earth; Jerusalem the Centre of the New Age; Christ present in His Glory; The Kingdom of “the Thousand Years:” The Vastness of the Idea of the Kingdom; False that the Kingdom of Christ is not here now; False that it comes to victory before He comes; Science demands a Millennial Age; Use andAbuse of Prophecy; Chiliasm indestructible; Testimony of the Writer; Parting with the Prophet.)
SUMMATION. OBJECTIONS. CONCLUSION.
What the book of Daniel teaches is that, because of Israel’s apostasy, the Jewish state was overthrown and the sovereignty of the Hebrew people, whose great ancestor became “heir of the world through the righteousness of faith,” was passed by God’s decree to the four empires of Babylon, Medo-Persia, Graeco-Macedonia and Rome, and to the several kingdoms into which the third and fourth of these should be divided; and signally so to the “Little Horn” out of the third, a type of the “Little Horn” of the fourth, yet to appear. Thenceforward, during these “Times of the Gentiles,” the Jews should ever remain under the Gentile yoke, scattered among all nations, expatriated from her home, without an organized nationality, and only saved from their subjection at the second coming of Christ, upon their repentance and faith, and after sore tribulation. Then, and only then, their lost sovereignty should revert, their kingdom be restored in glory greater than that of Solomon, and made the local and sustaining centre of the kingdom of Christ on victory “Underneath all heavens.” Thus, the ancient people of God, converted to a “holy people” in the highest spiritual sense, should be re-established in their old historical relations to the nations of the earth, and be as life from the dead to the world.
Many are the important lessons here taught; among them (1) the indestructibility of the Jewish race, as a separate unamalgamated people, a “generation that shall not pass away;” (2) the destructibility and transient character of all the empires and kingdoms of the world; (3) that during the Times, with all the kingdoms of Europe, Asia and Africa, foredoomed like the rest to retire from the scene that the kingdom of Christ may enter victoriously with Israel’s kingdom as the centre of the new age of the Gentiles the triumph of the kingdom of God in righteousness and peace, underneath all heavens, is not to be expected; (4) that the restoration of the Jews and the re-establishment of the Jewish state are as little to be expected, until the Jewish people have been turned to faith in Jesus as the Messiah, and resumed the central doctrines of their ancient creed, as taught in the prophets, and professed by the first disciples in the holy city; (5) that the time-point, or epoch, of the final Jewish elevation is the time-point of the final destruction of all Gentile power, viz., the second coming of Christ.
by one the prophet sees the ancient empires
pass away, beginning with the empire of
prophet beholds the conflict ever permanent
until it culminates on the closing scenes of the “Warfare Great.”
He takes account of the kingdoms of this world
masquerading in the
costume of a nominal Christianity.
He sees no hope of the world’s deliverance from its evils,
such condition, during the “Times
of the Gentiles.” He
has anticipated the fact that when
Christianity should enter history and come to be the religion of
the state, in place of Paganism and the old idolatry, it would be
politically, by the Fourth Empire, and the Powers, only to be made
to their temporal interests. He
foresaw that it would become a military Christianity, a force employed
rulers and legislators, as a means of subjugating nations to their
that, under the pretense of giving the Religion of Christ and a better
civilization to the world, it would veil the rapacity and lust of
Christian Powers, seeking temporal dominion over the property and lives
less powerful than themselves, and so “Christianize” the
has verified his
foresight, and at no time more openly than now, in the standing armies,
fleets, of the Christian world. The
“Horns” fight each
militarism will prevail till Christ
comes is the teaching of the prophet.
“’Tis but the same rehersal of the Past, -
First Freedom, and then Glory; when that fails,
Wealth, Vice, Corruption, Barbarism at last,
And history hath but one page.”
The old empires have perished from the earth, and over their dull, dark sepulchres, “Dead for want of Righteousness,” is read through the fog that dampens the grave of their glory. Their monuments wake only the reflection that
“Hardly the place of their antiquity,
Or note of those great monarchies we find,
Save in the dust, a verbal memory,
An empty name is left behind.”
So shall it be with the modern empires and kingdoms. “Passing away,” are the words the winds moan over their dying greatness. Thoughtful men – and of schools the most opposite – a Brandis, Hegel, Rawlinson, Macauley, von Mueller, - a Goldwin Smith and Sybel, - how many more, have recognized the law. They vindicate the prophet’s view. One kingdom alone is everlasting.
to the nature
of the communication made to
Daniel, it was a divine message, mediated by an angel, as was the later
with John, who, however, includes the “Church”
in his apocalypse. As
to the form,
it is an apocalypse, or “secret
Dan. 2: 18, 19,
an open unveiling of the
future, by means of plastic images or symbols presented to the eye,
divine interpretation to the ear; a ceries of realities to be fulfilled
history, in order and succession.
As to its contents,
has been already noted, and must be borne in
mind, that the Vision of Judgment, in Dan.
is not that of all mankind, quick and dead, i.e., not the Last
the Messianic Judgment of the living nations, connected with
is through judgment this great consummation
is achieved. It
comes with the
solution of the world’s greatest problem – that concerning the
political condition of the ancient people of God.
Like all other prophets, Daniel, under
the imagery of the 10 Horns, foretells the final conflict through which
is a poor scholar in the study of the
Scriptures who has failed to see the deep inner connection between
and the Messiah-doctrine, in both Testaments.
A disembodied state [of
the spirit] in
heaven is not the end of the ways of God.
The whole earth shall be filled with His glory. Through successive stadia
comes, with mighty changes among the nations, till the last catastrophe
reached. Men cannot
“Day of the Lord”
out of the Book of
God. We can no more
from the Messiah-doctrine, than we can dissociate Messiah from the
kingdom. His work
was not all
completed at His first coming.
Prophecy provides the ground-lines of the whole movement
with a calculus of time that passes from the Old Testament into the New. If it is true that, in
indestructibility of matter, persistence of force, and continuity of
are essential axioms of development, and that the last impetus is from
heterogeneous back to the homogeneous, from diversity to unity,
rest, through age-long transformations, these are no less true of
the kingdom of God. Long
science announced these, God’s Word revealed them, and built up
upon them. Heb.
11: 3. Acts 17:
is to the crisis of the second advent
the prophet looks when the world will change front and a new age heave
indestructible, the force is persistent, the motion is continuous. The result of the crisis
will be the
union of Jew and Gentile in the one
therefore, we ask ourselves what the prophet
Daniel has done, the answer is easy.
He has unveiled the plan of God, foretold the course of
abundant there are from
every side to Daniel’s doctrine, which is that of all the prophets, of
Christ and His apostles, as to every other doctrine of the Word of God,
“objections” as numerous as they are worthless.
It belongs to the truth of God that it
always gives occasion for “objections,” and is never
“received” until the heart is subdued to regognize its authority
above the prejudices and the vain interpretations of men. The “difficulty” is not in
the head, but in the heart, and its normal disposition toward the truth
dislikes. “Unto the upright there ariseth light in
chief “objection” is to
the “Truth” itself,
and here to the
truth of the pre-millennial advent of Christ – the “Chiliasm”
of Daniel’s book, as also of John’s Apocalypse – blind to the
fact that it is the “Chiliasm” of the whole Bible.
To discuss the objections would be to
write a large volume. It
by the word of God, objections are nothing, - least of all the
that the pre-millennial doctrine “disparages the means of grace, the
mission of the church, and the work of the Holy Spirit.’” – an objection which amounts to
this, that the Word of God
disparages itself! That
coming of Christ precedes
the vivtory of His kingdom “underneath
all heavens” is as certain as that
the sunrise precedes the day, or that the first advent precedes the
of the kingdom on its spiritual side in conflict.
of the kingdom on the
advent to set it up in conflict is undeniable.
The sequence of the kingdom on the
advent to set it up in victory “underneath
heavens” is not less evident.
And as that kingdom in victory is the millennial kingdom, the
second advent is premillennial. The
kingdom in victory follows that advent as inevitably as the fall of the
colossus follows the Stone’s impact on its toes, and as the destruction
of the Antichrist follows the second coming of the Son of Man. Nothing is more clear. What obscurity of vision
not to see that
none of the “objections”
against the nature of
the advent, the kingdom, or the thousand years, touch
the question of the sequence
of these upon the fact of the advent!
Let the kingdom be what it may, its
sequence remains undisturbed. Nor
is any truth more clear than this, viz., that no advent of Christ could
aught else than pre-millennial.
“He is before all
he who hold that the “thousand
years” have already been, are now, or
yet will be before the second coming of Christ, must hold that the
is pre-millennial. And
he who holds
that the book of Daniel is truth must hold that the kingdom “underneath all heavens”
follows the second
advent, and the thousand years are closed by the last judgment and
Heaven and Earth. Did
and ages exist antecedent to “the
whose starting point is fixed by all the prophets, Christ, and His
the close of the last great tribulation and
it be remembered, then, that the kingdom is
an outward “realm”
and “royalty,” as
well as an inward rule of grace in
the heart, and that in it are found “the
the earth,” and “all
reconstructed under the sceptre of Christ “the
only Potentate,” “King
of kings and
Lord of lords.” The
proud titles of the ancient monarchs, blazing on the monuments that
pride, He takes to Himself, and places their diasems upon His head. The advent of Christ does
From all that has been said, it is manifest that the Millennial Age does not lie in the “Times of the Gentiles,” therefore not in the Church-period at any time. That period is described by our Lord, twice, in the clearest manner, (1) in His Olivet discourse, Matt. 24: 4-29; (2) in His seven words to the seven churches of Asia Minor, Rev. 2: 1-29; 3: 1-22; in both cases a period wholly different from the period of the kingdom in victory, Rev. 11: 15; 16: 2-4; 20: 1-6. If John has used the phrase, “the thousand years,” it was simply, as Professor Ewald well says, “because it was a technical expression for the glowing period described by the prophets, a name already well-established, steadfast, and a matter of well-grounded expectation.” So, Professor Doner adds, with truth, “Undoubtedly, the thing common to both the Jewish and the Christian apocalypses is the period of the 1,000 years, commencing with the second advent.” We need not dwell on this. What we need to guard against is the great error that, because the “Church” is not the “kingdom” in victory, therefore, the kingdom as foretold by the prophets, is not here now, in any sense, but only comes at the second coming of Christ. On the contrary, the Messianic kingdom was set-up, on its spiritual side, at the first advent, in conflict, and we are “translated into it,” by renewal from the Holy Spirit and our faith in Christ. It came in the person of Christ, in His blessed Gospel, in the power of the Spirit and in the preaching of the Apostles. It is the sum of all spiritual good, all grace here, with the promise of all glory hereafter. To seek it, is our first necessity. To enter it is our salvation. It is pardon of sin, peace with God, and life-eternal. And yet the conception of the kingdom, in the teaching of Christ, is so great and manifold, that it cannot be defined but only described. No logical definition is adequate. The predicate is too immense. The kingdom is “like” a hundred different things. It has many phases, forms, and spheres. It is inner and spiritual; outer and material; moral and political. It is individual and national. It is earthly and heavenly. It is temporal and eternal. It is mixed and separate. It is past, present, and to come. Circumstantially it is many. Essentially it is one. It is the administration of the rule of God in Christ over heaven, earth, and hell. Its realization, here, is the doing of the will of God on earth as it is in heaven. Incomplete now, it is destined to perfection hereafter. “The 1,000 years” are but its future evolution, mediated by the second coming of Christ. Its conflict now is the postulate of its triumph then. To ablate this “blessed hope” is to call the church to battle for the world’s salvation without the certainty of victory. It is to make Paul’s argument in his letter to the Romans, chapters 9-11; and his exclamation, “O the depths!” the outgush of a deluded mind, and the “Hallelujahs” in John’s apocalypse, the wild ejaculations of an excited dreamer.
light of science should have taught us
better. The orderly
the ages and sequences of dispensations, in the grand march to ultimate
perfection, is a law as absolute as in the cosmos and the kingdoms of
and of history. Evolution
yet not without divine intervention.
Acts 17: 26-28. The procession of the rude
inorganic being to the elementary forms of organized existence, thence
complex in vast unfoldings and transformations, mediated by
the introduction of new forces, is not more true in geology, astronomy,
biology, than in revelation, prophecy, and history.
The same law operates in all, that of
“development,” – a word that involves three distinct ideas
(1) “tollere,” to take
away, or abolish, (2) “preservare,”
to preserve, (3) “elevare,”
to elevate or raise to a higher plane, a higher life, and so bring to
perfection. A score
present themselves as illustrations of this law, - the growth of a
growth of a plant, the growth of a civil constitution, the growth of a
doctrine, the growth of a nation to its maturity and highest bloom. What is changing and
ephemeral in form,
passes away, while what is substantial, essential and enduring, moves
and upward, through sunshine and storm, ever in conflict, ever opposed,
finally victorious, “So is the
Therefore, at the close of a long life devoted to the study of God’s Word, and having prayed that He, who alone can open the eyes of the blind, would vouchsafe that mercy to me, as He did to Bartimaeus, and the two wanderers to Emmaus, do I desire to leave on record my unalterable conviction of the truth of the pre-millennial doctrine, a doctrine no other than this, that the second coming of Christ precedes the millennial kingdom “underneath all heavens,” – a doctrine for which the prophet Daniel stood at the Babylonian and Persian courts, winning glory to God, and honour for himself and his friends. It is not that a man’s convictions are either the measure or the test of “Truth,” or his emotions a proof that his creed is right. The Holy Spirit often dwells in sanctifying power where He does not dwell as an illiminating power in the deep things of God, and time embalms the errors it does not destroy, and creeds are propagated from father to son. But it is that the long, prayerful, and independent study of the truth, - with a sincere desire to know it, - and a heart honest enough to receive it, - does bring with it a self-evidencing and self-interpreting light, by which the truth is sealed to the conscience in the sight of God, with a certitude transcending all conjectures, and superior to all the changes to human feeling, - an “assurance of understanding” in the mystery of God. It is that the truth, like its Author is invincible. The question is not what “views” do I hold, but what “views” hold me, and what their ground, and whence their origin? In the words of Augustine, “it matters not what I say, what you say, what he says, but what saith the Scripture!” And as to the “meaning” of the Scripture, which is the Scripture, an interpretation that runs organically current, from the Pentateuch to the Revelation by John, and is simply a self-developing statement consistent and harmonious, amid a hundred variations and expansions, each prophet and apostle leading up to some objective point, and final focus of the truth, - the Master confirming all, - is absolutely infallible, and never can be set aside, so long as the Word of God endures. Like the encircling concave mirrors of Archimedes, so placed as to flash their converging lights in front of them, so stand the books of the Bible, - that effulgent focus, the glorious second coming of Christ. He who fails to see it, only fails because his vision is perverted. The insight of such truth is supplied alone by the “Spirit of Truth” who gave the sacred volume to be the light in all our seeing, and the comfort in all our searching. And, to the writings of no prophet, have the Holy Spirit, the Lord, and His apostles, borne greater witness than to the writings of “the prophet Daniel.” If we fail, here, it is because we do not use the Old Testament as they used it, cite it as they cited it, or believe it as they believed it.
Therefore do I deem it loyal to the Truth to testify that in Dan. 2: 44, 7: 27, and in Rev. 20: 1-6, lies the bottom, bedrock, basis, and format statement of the pre-millennial doctrine, more deep, massive, and enduring than the granite foundations of the earth, - not to speak of a hundred other texts. I deem it “Truth” to affirm that such is the organic connection of both Testaments, and the dependence of the New upon the Old, that the sequence of the kingdom upon the second advent, in Dan. 7, for the Beast’s destruction determines forever that the scene of the cloud-seated Son of Man on Revelation 14., and of the Warrior on the White Horse in 19., are no other than the same as that of the Cloud-Comer in Dan. 7., and therefore, the second coming of Christ is pre-millennial. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but this connection, dependence, sequence and identity, shall not pass away. God’s throne is not more fully established. The almightiness and everlastingness of God’s Word are here. Monumental brass, marble, and adamant, will wear away corroded by the tooth of time. The solid masonry of men, the rocks on which man’s mightiest architecture has reposed, will become as the shifting sands, and his proudest structures crumble into dust. But this “Truth” shall stand forever. Abused like every other doctrine of the Scriptures, associated with delusions it abhors, error now seeking to enjoy its fellowship, and now to repel it, wounded in the house of its friends, rejected by those who know the least about it, studied relatively by the few, distorted by the many, victimized to creeds, councils, and special hate, it still lives and will continue to live forever.
“Time writes no wrinkle on its brow.”
The “Hope” it wispers has been tested on the plains of Dura, in the fiery furnace and the lion’s den, in Maccabean caves, the apphitheatre at Rome, the dungeons at Patmos, the recesses of the Cottain Alps, the Americain mountains, and wherever the blood of the martyrs of Jesus has been shed. Wreathed with the memories of Olivet, it looks to Olivet in days to come. Twice ten centuries and a half it has been the one bright star that has shone through the gloom of Israel’s long night of suffering and expatriation; and now that the brows of the morning are purpling with the tokens of the coming day, it beats in Israel’s breast with a redoubled pulse. The present age hates it. The self-deluded admirers of human progress turn their back upon it. Sociologists deride it. World-reformers make light of it. The political Zionist hisses at it. The church treats it with indifference, and oftentimes with opposition. Many good men, from motives of policy, avoid it, unable to refut it. It is not popular with the optimism of a false theology and a blooming antichristianity. But in multitudes of hearts it finds a home, and is welcomed as nothing less than the imperishable truth of God.
this I can truthfully and intelligently say,
with eyes resting on the history of the church for eighteen centuries,
full credit to all that Christianity has done for the world, in the
civil and religious liberty, the abolition of the gigantic evils, the
of the blessed Gospel, in the institution of her immortal charities,
and in the
education of what
the early church
believed, and how the doctrine came to be corrupted, and by what
was persuaded to revolutionize the faith of that “cloud of witnesses” who
were the spectators of her early
warfare, and vested in the vain attempts to set aside her testimony;
perfect understanding of all that creeds, councils and polemists, have
formulated, and how both ancient and modern sects have nobly but
expressed their judgment, and how false teachers have made use of it,
teachers have been misled, and what dogmatics have objected, and what
has to offer, and, better still, what a thorough exegesis has so
established in the study of both Testaments; - in view of all, and of
account, I desire to utter this confession, that the doctrine of the
Christ cannot come to victory, “underneath
heavens,” till the Lord Himself comes, is the very “Truth” of God. That great and “Blessed Hope,” is our hope,
that “Faith” is our
faith, as it was the faith and
hope of all the prophets, of Jesus Christ, and His apostles. It is the only “Hope” of victory for the
So we take leave, for the present, of the great prophet of the exile, whose pages have been to us a light and a comfort in these our “troublous times.” And all the more, since God Himself is fulfilling, now, His own word beneath our very eyes, that “sure word of prophecy unto which we do well to take heed.” Would that our feeble effort had been worthier of the book and its holy author! All we can do is to close our own words, and seal our own book, yet saying as we drop the pen.
Blest prophet! Second to no seer,
Whose eyes beheld the coming day,
To whom the sacred task was given
To paint the End, and point the Way!
The world’s whole future thou hast seen,
The march of empires, ages down;
Their conflict, victory and crown.
The wars of twice a thousand years,
Five hundred more, and more to come,
Earth’s kingdoms scattered like the chaff,
For one alone to find the room!
The Persian, Greek, and Roman line
To set a throne in Palestine.
The Blood-stained Horns that gore the world,
The Teuton, Bourbon, bold to scoff,
Islam, Tiars, downward hurled
Braganza, Saxon, Romanoff.
Secrets of terror thou hast told,
Of glory, too, so strange to tell;
Visions beside the rushing streams,
Time’s footfall measured by the hand
That wheels the orbs in orbits high,
The Seasons, Ages, Epochs, Ends,
The calendar of history:
Messiah, first upon the cross,
Then hidden long from mortal view;
Messiah coming on the clouds
To judge the Gentile and the Jew.
The Risen Saints thine eyes beheld,
The Antichrist sent to his doom;
The “Kingdom, Power and Glory” come!
O prophet of thy people great!
Above thy grave, to Shushan lent,
Thy “Kitab Emeth,” “Book of Truth,”
Is thine eternal monument!
In vain the critic plies his art,
To fiction make of heaven-born words
Immortal still the “words” remain
Thine own, the angel’s, and the Lord’s.
Rest undisturbed, till yonder morn
Awakes the “many” from the dust;
Within thy lot thou then shalt stand
In resurrection of the just.
In brightness, like the golden sun,
And glittering as the largest star,
Splendour shall crown thy labour done,
Nor age-long years its brightness mar.
“Hayi-Olam”, streaming in from God,
“Zohar,” the gleam that fadeth never;
Thy portion these, with Jesus near,
Amen! Forever and forever!
The Hope our Hope, thy Faith our Faith,
Thy people on our heart in prayer,
One day our eyes the joy will see,
And then with thee the glory share!
think the best apology a teacher of the Truth
can make for his errors, and the only one. If he is an honest man, is
acknowledge the same. It
is with great
pleasure I give to the public the subjoined letter from my friend,
B. Merriman, formerly Professor of Mathmatics and Astronomy in the
Clifton Springs, Feb. 3, 1898.
Dear Dr. West:-
Allow me to call your attention to an error in your exposition of Daniel’s prophecy, on page 86 in September number, 1897, of “Our Hope.” You concede that the 69 weeks, or 483 years, of the prophecy are prophetic years of 360 days each, but you have combined them with Julian years, and, to annul the effect of this error, have, inadvertently, made another by subtracting 4 yrars, when you should have added them. I think the following is the explanation you intended to give.
Daniel’s prophecy of 69 “sevens,” or 483 years, when reduced to Julian, or years of civil reckoning, makes 476 years. This period terminates, as you interpret the prophecy, at the birth of Christ, B.C. 4. The time of the year A.D. 1 is evidently 4 years longer than 476; i.e., is 480 Julian years. The prophet, you say, took no account of Ezra’s “gap,” the interval between Ezra’s chapters 6. and 7., or from B.C. 515 to B.C.457. This interval, reckoned exclusively or in completed time, as was then the custom, is 56 years. By adding this number, therefore, to the 480 years, we have 536 years as the entire period from the starting point of the 70 weeks to A.D. 1. This puts the beginning of the 70 weeks in the very year of the Edict of Cyrus, B.C. 536, and shows the “perfect harmony” you seek to establish between the Biblical and secular chronology.
Very respectfully yours,
GEO. R. MERRIMAN.
THE PROPHET NUMBERS.
THE 70th WEEK.
Daniel 9: 24-27, is the seat and the source – the fons et origo – of all the prophet numbers in both Testaments concerning the “End.” Each week of 7 years, prophetic time. The “One Week,” Dan. 9: 27, is the last of the 70 weeks, and is therefore 7 years. Its first “Half,” of three and a half years (9: 27), is unfulfilled in Daniel, but filled in Rev. 11: 3, and called “1,260 days.” The middle of the week, when the “abomination” is set up, reappears in our Lord’s Olivet Discourse, Matt. 24: 15, and again in Rev. 11: 7, when the “Two Witnesses” are slain, and is further prominent as the time-point when Israel’s conversion is announced and the Dragon is dejected, Rev. 12: 10-12, and is the beginning of the Great Tribulation, Rev. 13: 5; Dan. 7: 25; 12: 7; Matt. 24: 15. The second “Half,” or three and a half years, is expressed in various ways, yet all commensurate: (1) As “a time, two times (duel number) and the dividing of a time” (Dan. 7: 25; 12: 7; Rev. 12: 14), a “time” being a prophetic or soli-lunar year of 360 days everywhere in Daniel’s book, as when it is said of Nebuchadnezzar that “7 times shall pass over him” (4: 3), i.e., three and a half “times” are a half-week, as “7 times” are one week. (2) As the “shortened days” in Matt. 24: 21, 22. (3) As the “short time,” in Rev. 12: 12. (4) As 42 months (Rev. 11: 2; 12: 5). As the 1,260 days of the sheltered woman (Rev. 12: 6), identical with her “time, times and a half” (Rev. 12: 14). Daniel’s weeks are weeks of years, not of days put for years, but of years for years, in the first instance. No “Year-Day Principle” finds any place in Daniel. “Son of Man, I have given thee each day for a year,” was not spoken to Daniel, but to Ezekiel. Daniel’s “Sevens” are groups of years, not days. The utmost caution is needful, lest we practice deception on ourselves when using the term “weeks.” All the weeks are of equal size, i.e., commensurate, although the two “Halves” are not identical. Otherwise, the angel would have told the prophet that in 69 weeks no less than 173,880 years would pass away between the Edict of Cyrus, B.C. 536, and the Birth of Christ, and that the 70th week in Daniel means 2,520 years, the half-week 1,260 years. Thus, on the Year-Day principle, the last half ends somewhere about 1846, or 1866, or 1896, or 1897, or 1898, the Middle of the Week being the Edict of Justinian, or the capture of Jerusalem by Omar, or the temporal donation to the Papacy, i.e., somewhere in the neighbourhood of A. D. 500-700. The first half of the Antichrist’s week must therefore, have begun from 1,000 to 1, 200 years before the Antichrist appeared, i.e., the 70th week began more than half a millennium prior to the Birth of Christ!
HOW NEAR TO THE END?
only reliable data we have for the
approximate determination of the question are (1) the Biblical and true
distinction between the “End of
and the common term “End of the
(2) The doctrine of the Seventy Weeks in Daniel, with their included
the last our present age; (3) The Olivet Discourse, in which this
defined as the Roman “Times of
and as followed by the Seventh “Week,”
at whose middle point the “abomination
desolation” is introduced; (4) The Thessalonian letters of
whose eschatology rests on both Daniel and the Olivet Discourse; and
Apocalypse by John, which again covers the same Interval, i.e., the
Daniel’s Fourth Empire, and at whose close the Seventieth Week is
the last time in Biblical prophecy.
Here we have chronological
data of definite measure, the Interval alone
being undetermined. This
chronological indeterminateness is, however, compensated for, in large
(6) by the predicted signs and events which “much
needs” precede the Advent, and by the assignment of the
Church to her place alongside of
We stand, today, with sixty-nine of the seventy weeks, and almost 1898 years [now 2,011 years] of the Interval between the sixty-ninth and seventieth week, i.e., the Interval of the Roman Times of the Gentiles, behind us. How long this undetermined time may be, how much remains of it before the revelation of the Antichrist and the opening of the seventieth week, none can tell. Manifestly, we are thrown upon the Events and Signs foretold in prophecy, as certain to occur anterior to the Advent. Only thus can we measure our probable nearness to the end. By no astronomical calculation can we fix the time-point of this event. Every effort to do so has been convicted of scientific error. By no Year-Day theory of reckoning can it be decided, since Daniel knows of none such. The series of precurrent events and signs were designated of Christ to be among the objects of the Church’s watching, the special couriers in advance of his appearing. That Coming He has fixed in the most positive manner, as have the Prophets and His apostles, at the “End” of the Church’s Missionary Age, and given with great fidelity its unmistakable omens, “Behold, I have told you before.” These are political, civil, national, international, moral, social, religious, cosmical, i.e., terrestrial and celestial. Some enter singly, some contemporaneously, some successively, all increasingly. Some are nearer to us, i.e., remotest from the Advent; some are further from us, i.e., nearest to the Advent; and as the end approaches are cumulative, more frequent, special, intense and universal. Some are mediate, some are common to all ages, but all together are peculiar to the “End.” The earlier precursors do not retire from the field, but still continue. The heralds of the “Day of the Lord” persist and enter into the day itself. The last sign is “the Sign of the Son of Man in Heaven,” that is, the Appearing of the Son of Man, who is Himself His own Sign, as Bengel beautifully says, “Ipse Signum Sui.”
Among the Events which protend the approaching End of the Age, are
I Those given in the Old Testament, viz.:-
1. The return of the Jews to their own land in numbers sufficient to satisfy the prophecy. Isaian 11: 11-16.
2. The covenant between the Antichrist and the Jewish masses, whereby they acquire a modus vevendi with the building of their temple, and revival of their ancient worship, the Lord reproving their unbelieving labour. Isaiah 66: 1-4; Daniel 9: 27.
3. The conversion of the Remnant and their persecution by their apostate brethren. Isaiah 56: 5-9.
The breach of the
covenant between the Antichrist and the Jews, followed by the Great
Tribulation, Daniel 9: 27,
the attack on certain Powers upon the Antichrist, and the Antichrist’s
The gathering of the
The sanguinary action
in the valley of Jehoshaphat and
The Cosmic Signs
– earthquake, the sundering of the
Those given in the New
Testament. In the
the Lord gives the Signs and Events for both the destruction of
1. The appearing of False Christs, coming in His name. Matthew 24: 5.
2. Wars, civil and international, disrupting the bonds of amity and peace among nations. 24: 6, 7
Cosmic Signs –
earthquakes contemporaneous with sporadic famines and pestilence, in
places, 24: 7,
these the signs and events
nearest to us, as they were to the Jews before
Among the Middle Signs:
4. As to the External History of the Church, a universal hatred and bloody persecution of the saints by the nations. The extensions of missions has for its pre-supposition not only the reception of the Gospel on the one hand, but its rejection on the other; the conflict of Christianity with the world-powers and the false systems of religion by which they are supported. 24: 9.
5. As to the Internal History of the Church. A Great Apostacy from the truth by unbelieving Christians, a departure from the true faith and life of the Gospel [of the kingdom], and a practical return to a worldly and heathen walk and conversation, by means of false teachers themselves apostate from the truth – unbelief, lawlessness, pleasure, crime and declension of Christian love and vital goodness abounding in professing Christendom. 24: 10-12.
The Progress of
Missions at the same time; a universal witness to the Gospel [of the Kingdom] among
all nations, during a condition of society such as was in the days of
Among the signs remotest from us and nearest to the Advent are:
7. The Antichrist, the Abomination of Desolation spoken of by “Daniel the prophet,” the Great Tribulation, and false alarms as to the coming of Christ. The political dechristianization of the Christian powers, their subserviency to mammon and Antichristianity, will have advanced with the progress of Christendom in wealth, and its departure from the Gospel [of the kingdom] and the law of righteousness. What exists, save “Christ’s elect,” is a moral “carcass” fit only for the eagle’s beak. 24: 15, 21-26, 28; James 1: 5-7. Christendom will be as morally corrupt as it will be architecturally splendid, and, save a faithful few, as dead to Christ and His Spirit, as it is alive to mammon and the work of Satan, under the pretense of “Peace” and “Reform.” “Money and Peace” will be its curse, all the time preparing for war, - Hypocrisy its policy, Unbelief its creed.
8. The culmination of the Apostacy, under the teachings of false Christs and false prophets, the frog-croaking ministers of [Satan,] the Antichrist and the False Prophet, deceiving the world by means of great signs and wonders, assailing the truth and proclaiming “the lie” that Christ and Christianity are a fraud. 24: 24; Revelation 13: 5-18; 16: 14.
The Conversion of the
Jews and the Gathering of the Nations against
10. The Cosmic Signs next to the Advent, viz., Obscuration of the Heavenly Lights, Meteoric Showers, the Concussion of the Heavens, Earthquakes, Distress, Perplexity, Terror and Apprehension, the Sea roaring. 24: 29; Luke 21: 25-26. The Son of Man Himself, His own Sign, in the clouds of heaven. 24: 30.
are the signs and events that “must
needs come to pass” before the Second Coming
of Christ. How many
of these are in
the field now is for the judgment of enlightened men to determine. As to the Nearer Signs,
there can be no
question. As to the
the only question is how long they will continue until the latest ones
enter. That they
are present in their measure
is undeniable. That
both the signs
nearest to us and the middle signs contemporate and cumulate, in our
cannot be disputed. The
of the world is nowhere a sign of the End in any book of Scripture, and
judgment based upon a presupposition so gratuitous is worthless. Nowhere has the Saviour
“When the world is universally converted, then the End will come,”
but this, “When the Gospel
[of the kingdom (Matt. 24: 14)] has been testified to all nations, then
End shall come.”
Nowhere is the Divine commission to witness to the Gospel
in all lands,
instruction all nations in the truth, and so discipling them, any
the measure of true conversions will equal the universality of the
command. It never
has done so in
any nation, city, town or village of the world, and never will in this
age. That vision is
the future after the Antichrist is destroyed and Satan is bound. Only then “All nations shall come and worship
before the Lord; because His judgments
shall have been manifested,” and that is when the
his kingdom are destroyed, and the Colossus of Gentile politics and
become as the “chaff of the
The idea that the Lord may come any moment, and that, by a “special revelation to Paul in 1 Thess. 4: 14-17,” He has subverted the whole body of Old and New Testament prophecy as to the time-point of His coming, its nature, and the order of events, and that “Signs” are only for the Jews – in a word, that He might have come before Peter had died, and Paul had borne witness at Rome, and Jerusalem had been destroyed, or any of the church been martyred, and that His intercession within the vail, the world’s evangelization, and the fullness of the Gentiles, might have only required “a moment,” a doctrine which makes Him a self-contradictory Teacher, in view of His assertion that He intended to “delay,” “tarry,” be gone “a long time,” and only “after a long time” return to reckon with His servants – a doctrine, moreover, which deprives the [regenerate] believer of His place in that bright resurrection wherein the righteous shall shine as the sun in the kingdom of their Father, may be allowed, here, to pass without comment.
the other extreme are they who remove for
into the future the hope of the believer by indulging the dream that
disputes will introduce the universal reign of righteousness and peace
the Lord comes. This
superficial. It is
the honest but
misguided view of many Christians.
It is the scheme that Mammon will approve – the
Stockholder’s and the Bondholder’s piety for the sake of
money. The schems
was tried in
“The war-drum throbs on longer, and the battle-flags are furled
In the Parliament of man, the federation of the world.”
Lord Russell, Chief Justice of England, calls it a “poetic dream” for this age, remarking that “Europe is pretty well civilized now, but all talk of the general disarmament is invariably received with a smile” – the smile of Christian Europe! The fact is that the nations cannot trust each other, and are comforted with conditions where “Prince of honour” cannot be maintained. Nor can the “Day of the Lord,” that will “burn as an oven,” be arbitrated away from the word and the purpose of God, with whom the judgment of the nations is a divine necessity. Peace with Shame, Disgrace, Dishonour, coffers filled with money, - Peace with oppression and injustice, - while guilty Christendom, unmoved, beholds massacre and murder by the Turk and the Spaniard, year after year, and the United States Government, ruled by the Money-Kings, under the plea of “Peace,” withholds armed intervention in behalf of Justice, Humanity and Liberty, the blood of 600,000 starved and butchered Cuban men, women and children, crying to heaven for vengeance.
And far away from the heart of the Church, as a practical power, does the idea of the “universal conversion of the world” remove the hope of the coming of the Lord. Criminal Christendom, excusing its crimes by missionary contributions, preachers and conversion of the world before the Lord comes, Allusion to this has been made already. A close inspection of the facts – not to speak of the plain teaching of Scripture – will satisfy us that this also is a “poetic dream.” If we consult the most reliable statistics …the ratio of the Christian population to the non-Christian in heathendom is a trifle over one-fifth of 1 per cent. after nearly nineteen centuries. … And the ratio of Christians in heathendom to the unconverted there is only a little over one-fifth of 1 per cent, - the heathen population outrunning that of the civilized nations, Islam outrunning Christianity in many parts of Asia and Africa, new Hinduism resisting it, all the heathen religions still in force. If, after nearly 19 centuries, the most advanced staged of Christian civilization can show only one-fifth of 1 per cent, as the ratio between converted and unconverted heathendom, how long will it take to convert the heathen world so rapidly increasing, not to speak of the unconverted millions in Christendom? How long will it take, in face of the clear statements of the Lord that when He comes, it will be as it was in the days of Noah and Lot, and of Paul that Apostasy and Anti-Christianity will prevail, and of all the Prophets, Christ and His Apostles, that Christendom must be judged for its crimes?
when we remember that evangelization and
conversion are not synonymous terms, and that of the 1,000,000,000 yet
unconverted in heathendom vast multitudes have already been
still rejecting the Gospel, even as in Christian lands, and that every
missionary field is expanding through the steady toil of Christian men
women, and that when the Gospel has witnessed to “all nations” in the “whole
creation,” then the Lord will come, and in a time of deep
and world-wide war, the case stands very different, and the hope of the
believer brightens with every hour.
The Lord does not expect the world to be converted when He
comes. In the last
prophecy of the New
Testament, given by Himself to John, the last call of the Gospel,
the voice of the Zenith-Angel flying on the path of the sun, is to an
unchristian world “ripe”
14: 6. But
He does expect
the world to be evangelized. The
commission is to “disciple all nations,” i.e., instruct them, in
the Gospel – to preach the Gospel to “the whole
placed in the original text, between “whole” and “creation,”
indicates the universality of the sphere of missionary labour, the
compass of the evangelization.
It is best not to dogmatise. The word from the watchtower of the prophet is, “The vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it will speak, and not lie. Though it tarry, wait for it, because it will surely come; it will not tarry.” Hab. 2: 3. This attitude of patient expectation is of divine commandment. Amid all vicissitudes the one abiding comfort is this, “Jesus Christ, the Same, yesterday, to-day and forever.” Heb. 13: 8. The Church’s duty is clear: (1) To give the Gospel, at once, to the neglected parts of heathendom; (2) to work and pray for Israel’s conversion; (3) to save all the souls she can and do all the good she can; (4) to bear a fruitful witness to the [whole] truth; (5) to keep herself unspotted from the world; (6) to study earnestly the signs of the times, and (7) to wait, watch and pray, uttering back the promise of the Lord, “Amen! Even so, come, Lord Jesus!”
“Till He come” so runs the line,
Marking off the term of ill;
Darkest hours of power malign
Never more an hour to fill.
“Till He come” the might of hell
Still against the saints shall rage,
And, beneath the Tempter’s spell,
Men in strifes and sins engage;
“Till He come,” wrong will prevail,
And the right be done in vain;
Truth’s confessions still entail
Toil, and obloquy, and pain;
But Our Hope can brook delay,
Waiting such a glorious day!