Tuesday, 22 March 2011 23:00

The Daniel Comparison

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Although this post isn't part of the Revelation Series that we've been covering in class, I thought it would be a good time to add it to the mix because of recent events in the Middle East.

Egypt_HorsemanBy now we’ve all heard the news that the Muslim world is in a state of chaos that hasn't been seen for centuries, with spiritual fires raging from Morocco to Egypt to Iran. After centuries of despotism, it seems that many in the Middle East have had enough of dictatorial rule. Change is on the way. The question is, what kind of change will it be?

If you’ve studied eschatology (biblical end times) for any length of time, then you know that one of the signs of the last days is that an antichrist figure will emerge in the Middle East. This 'beast' will start small but will quickly conquer the Islamic lands surrounding Israel, building a military machine that will then invade and occupy Jerusalem itself. Once this occurs, the beast will then set out to implement the 'final solution'; he will attempt to completely destroy the Jewish people. But in the end, he himself will be completely destroyed when Jesus returns to save them.

So the question is, are today's events setting the table for the rise of this beast? And if so, then WHO is this beast, WHERE will he come from, and WHEN will he arrive? Fortunately the Bible provides the answers to these questions, if we would only examine the visions of Daniel as a progressive revelation.


THE DANIEL COMPARISON

DamascusTo peek ahead just a bit, the visions of Daniel demonstrate that this antichrist figure will first usurp the throne in Syria, from where he will launch attacks against Egypt and other surrounding nations while he consolidates his empire. Not coincidentally, the same thing has been predicted in Islamic eschatology, where their messiah figure, known as the 'Mahdi', will return to Damascus to restore his Caliphate. In other words, the Muslim Mahdi fits the conditions of our biblical antichrist.  That's our first hint about his identity.

For those of us that wonder how, when and where the biblical antichrist will emerge, I have a question. If we are approaching the end times as many have suggested, what would be easier for this antichrist figure to conquer and consolidate;

1) a number of stable countries with strong leaders, or
2) a number of chaotic countries with deposed leaders?

Naturally, the answer is behind door number 2, since there would be much less resistance. And in my reading of scripture, this is probably why these Muslim nations are in simultaneous turmoil today. I’m convinced that this chaos is merely God’s way of setting the table for the time of wars and revolutions, and the eventual emergence of the beast.

It’s really not that difficult to determine where the antichrist will emerge from or when he comes on the scene in the last days.  All we have to do is examine the visions provided in the book of Daniel, which are written as a self-contained progressive revelation of the end times. In other words, if we accumulate all the clues provided in his earlier visions and apply them to his final vision of “The Kings of the South and the North”, a clear scenario is presented. However, be forewarned that the result is slightly different than what is normally taught.

For brevity’s sake, rather than including the text of each passage in this post, please just keep your Bible handy and read each vision as we go. Then, we’ll merely sum up the content of each vision and extract the key points to include in our list of ‘clues’.  These clues will then be plugged in to Daniel’s final vision of the ‘Kings of the South and the North’, and you will see precisely where and when the antichrist emerges.  With this type of study, no manipulation or bias is found, because we just let the chips fall where they may.


‘FOUR GREAT BEASTS’ - DANIEL 7:

If you just read the first half of chapter 7, then you no doubt will recognize that the following clues about the emergence of the future antichrist were included in the account;  

Daniels_4_Beasts1) it crushed and devoured its victims 
2) it trampled underfoot whatever was left.
3) it had ten horns.
4) another horn, a little one, came up among them;
5) three of the first horns were uprooted before it.
6) it had a mouth that spoke boastfully.

Then, in the second half of chapter 7, we find an explanation of the vision, and as you read this portion of chapter 7, you will find that it provides these additional clues;

1) it had a horn that came up looked more imposing
2) another king will arise, different than the others
3) he will speak against the Most High
4) he was waging war against the saints and defeating them
5) it will devour the whole earth, trampling it down and crushing it.
6) it will oppress God’s saints
7) it will try to change the set times and the laws.
8) The saints will be handed over to him for a time, times and half a time.
9) his power will be taken away and completely destroyed forever
10) The ten horns are ten kings who will come from this kingdom

Okay, the list is growing now, but we still have a ways to go.....


'A RAM AND A GOAT' - DANIEL 8:

In chapter 8 of Daniel, we now find an additional vision that was different than chapter 7, but with symbolism that implicates the same general cast of characters.  As you read along in this vision, you will find the following clues about the emergence of the antichrist;

Daniels_Ram__Goat1) out of one of them came another horn
2) it started small but grew in power
3) it grew in power to the south and to the east and toward the Beautiful Land.
4) it grew until it reached the host of the heavens
5) it threw some of the starry host down to the earth and trampled on them.
6) It set itself up to be as great as the Prince of the host;
7) it took away the daily sacrifice from him
8) the place of his sanctuary was brought low.
9) the host of the saints and the daily sacrifice were given over to it.
10) it prospered in everything it did 
11) truth was thrown to the ground.

And just as chapter 7 was divided into a vision and then an explanation, so chapter 8 is divided in this way. So now we must consider the additional clues offered in the explanation portion of this chapter;

1) he will be stern-faced king
2) he will be a master of intrigue
3) he will cause astounding devastation
4) he will succeed in whatever he does
5) he will destroy the mighty men and the holy people
6) he will cause deceit to prosper
7) he will consider himself superior.
8) when they feel secure, he will destroy many
9) he will take his stand against the Prince of princes.
10) he will be destroyed, but not by human power.

At this point we've added some highly specific clues. But there is still more........


THE SEVENTY ‘SEVENS’ - DANIEL 9:

Daniel_-_70th_HorsemenThe next vision Daniel was provided with was not really a vision, but an explanation of what he had seen, given by the angel Gabriel.  As you read chapter 9, you will find the following potential clues about the future ‘beast’;

1) he will confirm a covenant with many for one ‘seven.’
2) in the middle of the ‘seven’ he will put an end to sacrifice and offering
3) on a wing of the temple he will set up an abomination that causes desolation
4) the end that is decreed is poured out on him

There is some debate as to whether the first two clues in this instance are descriptive of Jesus or the beast himself, and our view of this depends largely on which translation we prefer. But that's another story for another day, and in either case, they will still identify the precise point in history future that we're looking for. So there's no need to argue the point.
 

THE ‘BEAST’ CHARACTERISTICS IN TOTAL

Now we can finally take all of the clues we have pulled from these visions and assemble them into one list that will describe the ‘beast’ or 'antichrist' as he rises to power.  That list of clues would suggest that we look for the following conditions;

* He will be different from the other kings
* He will be a master of intrigue
* The host of the saints will be given over to him
* He will confirm a covenant with many for one ‘seven’
* He will destroy the mighty men and holy people
* He will cause deceit to prosper
* He started small, but grew in power    
* When they feel secure, he will destroy many
* He prospered in everything it did
* He grew in power to the South/East/Beautiful Land
* He will try to change the set times & the laws
* Desolations have been decreed
* He will oppress His saints
* In the middle of the ‘seven’ he will end sacrifice & offering
* He will set up an ‘abomination of desolation’
* The saints will be handed over for time, times & half a time
* He had a mouth that spoke boastfully
* He will speak against the Most High
* He will succeed in whatever he does
* He will consider himself superior
* Truth was thrown to the ground
* He will become strong, but not by his own power
* Three of the first horns were uprooted before it
* He crushed and devoured victims, trampling those who were left
* He will take his stand against the Prince of Princes
* He will be destroyed, but not by human power

Okay, that a very specific set of clues to work with, with a number of 'primers' (corresponding points) that will be hard to miss when we plug them in to Daniel's final vision, "The Kings of the South and the North". And in 'PART 2' that will be posted in a few days, we'll show you where each one of them belongs. The outcome may surprise you. But this is no great mystery, and it takes no real expertise to find these points for yourself, so if you want to get a head start on these clues, go ahead and read Daniel 11 and 12, and see where YOU believe they fit. Trust me, you can do it.


NEXT TIME:

'Part 2' of the 'Daniel Comparison'
Read 5901 times Last modified on Sunday, 03 April 2011 22:08

Comments   

#4 Mike 2014-12-25 14:33
Edward,

In prayer I do ask for wisdom regarding these matters. The Lord knows my heart, and I believe my faith is rewarded.

Actually, many prophecies in the Old Testament remain unfulfilled, including those of the book of Daniel that are covered here. Many of the prophets wrote of a future time when the Messiah would return to redeem his people, the nations would be destroyed in His wrath, and the earth would be judged, only to be remade. From the beginning of the Bible to the end, there are prophecies that deal with that time, and they are intended for the future.

In regard to the book of Revelation, it's impossible to understand unless we plug in the corresponding unfulfilled prophecies found in the Old Testament. They cannot function independently. They are meant to be intertwined.

Blessings,

Mike
#3 Edward john 2014-12-25 09:01
B4 studying scriptures, entreat the Lord to deign to grant you in his rich mercy, mightly to understand his word.
All prophecy in the bible has already happened, except the book of Revelation which is yet to come and the end?????
+1 #2 Mike 2012-05-07 23:07
Hi Laiakini,

There are many potential dynamics in play with this 10-horn confederation, and nobody knows exactly how it will play out. However, everything in the Revelation is explained elsewhere in the Bible, including this. So my personal search for this confederation begins with what the Bible has already revealed.

For instance, it's interesting that the Psalm 83 confederation that attacks Israel is made up of 10 ancient nations, even though they are consolidated into 7 modern nations (7 heads and 10 horns?) as of today.

Also, God prophesied about the judgment and destruction of many ancient nations in the Old Testament and when we consolidate them into today's boundaries these judgments will fall on 10 modern-day Muslim nations (10 horns).

There are other possibilities as well. For instance, the riddle in the Revelation that speaks of 7 heads and 10 horns may find it's true precedent in the extra-biblical book of Enoch, which speaks of 17 principal angels that fell and corrupted mankind in the days before the flood. They are all currently in the Abyss, but we will see them again once the 5th trumpet is sounded.

The problem here is that the number 17 is the number of confederatin in scripture, so there are naturally several possbilities for the 7 heads and 10 horns (7+10=17) described in Daniel and in the Revelation.

So, we have to wonder which of these scenarios is indicated in the end times. It's alot of food for thought. But I think the point made in Daniel's visions is that this antichrist figure will "come into" Syria and take it by force, which means he doesn't necessarily have to be an existing national leader when this happens. And he probably won't be.

Thanks for reading along!

Mike
+1 #1 Laiakini 2012-05-07 20:34
Hi,
From the explanations you have given it looks like the nations symbolised by the Bull. It has 10 founding nations original membership with the smallest nation being the leader. However, it membership might have grown which might turn attention away from itself.