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Daniel and Revelation
Daniel Chapters 10-12
End Time Vision
Daniel 10 through 12 consists of one big vision. It was given to Daniel in the third year of Cyrus, the ruler of Persia, after the Medes and the Persians conquered Babylon. This was in 539 BC. Daniel 10 gives us the introduction to that vision, including information on the angel who brought Daniel the vision. Daniel 11, up through verse 35, gives us a very detailed prophecy which was exactly fulfilled in the years to follow. The fulfilled prophecies of Daniel 11:1-35 are important because they not only validate Daniel's prophecy, but the vision jumps from Antiochus IV Epiphanes (175-164 BC), who is a type for an antichrist, to two end times antichrists. Daniel 11:36 through Daniel 12 is future fulfilment of the vision and a conclusion to the vision as a whole. The unfulfilled portion of this vision includes both the world ruling antichrist and the false prophet antichrist.
Daniel 11:1-35 gives fulfilled prophecy that is so detailed and so accurate, that many liberal scholars have tried to say Daniel was written many years later, after 164 BC. But this would make the whole book a fraud, because Daniel reports himself as the author, and he gives the specific dates of his visions. As seen in the chapter on Daniel 9, a reasonable interpretation of the seventy weeks gives the exact year of Christ's birth. To believe that the whole Bible is God's inspired word, we must accept that the book of Daniel was in fact written by Daniel and that he did in fact have a vision of incredible accuracy. We can expect the end time portion of this vision to have the same degree of incredible accuracy.
Daniel 10:13-14 ESV The prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days, but Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I was left there with the kings of Persia, (14) and came to make you understand what is to happen to your people in the latter days. For the vision is for days yet to come."
As we see in verse 13, this angel has been fighting the prince of the Persian kingdom. Michael the archangel comes to help. In verses 20 through chapter 11 verse 1, we get more details about this battle.
Daniel 10:20 - 11:1 ESV Then he said, "Do you know why I have come to you? But now I will return to fight against the prince of Persia; and when I go out, behold, the prince of Greece will come. (10:21) But I will tell you what is inscribed in the book of truth: there is none who contends by my side against these except Michael, your prince. (11:1) "And as for me, in the first year of Darius the Mede, I stood up to confirm and strengthen him.
Darius the Mede is somewhat confusing. Daniel 9:1 indicates that Darius was the "son of Xerxes (a Mede by descent)." Daniel 5:30 indicates that after killing Belshazzar, "Darius the Mede took over the kingdom, at the age of sixty-two." Ezra 1:1 indicates that Cyrus took over Babylon when the Medes and the Persians conquered Babylon. Daniel also refers to Cyrus. The historians all agree that Cyrus took over Babylon when he conquered it in 539 BC. There was a Darius who became king of Persia 17 years later (522 BC). But the son of this Darius was Xerxes, not his father. The Darius in Daniel was the son of Xerxes (just the opposite). Since Daniel 5:30 indicates that Darius the Mede took over the kingdom when Belshazzar was killed (at the writing on the wall), some commentators believe that Darius the Mede was another name for Cyrus. The whole issue is very confusing. And it's the primary argument used by the liberal scholars who say the book of Daniel is a fraud.
When we meet Daniel at the Resurrection, this issue should be our first question. We are going to assume that there was an earlier ruler named Darius the Mede whose father was Xerxes. Perhaps the later pair were named for their predecessors. Perhaps Darius the Mede was under the authority of Cyrus, with both of their reigns beginning when the Medes and the Persians conquered Babylon. Darius the Mede probably ruled over the city of Babylon whereas Cyrus rule over the entire Persian Empire.
In any case, this angel seems to be battling the "prince of Persia," starting when Darius the Mede (or Cyrus) took power. The angel also says that he will later be battling the prince of Greece. The angel says that no one supports him in these efforts except for Michael the archangel. The fulfilled prophecy that follows is about the progression of power from the Medes and the Persians to Alexander the Great. Daniel 8, about the ram and the goat, was also about this progression of power that would come. These angels are fighting demons who have spiritual dominion over the nations that rule the middle-east.
We need to do a little study here to see the significance of these battles with demonic princes of nations that rule the middle-east. Looking forward to Daniel 12:1, we see that Michael will arise, or "stand up." The Hebrew word for "stand up" in Daniel 11:1 (quoted earlier) is the same word as in Daniel 12:1. In Daniel 11:1, it's clearly talking about a battle in heaven involving Michael that took place in Daniel's time. Apparently the same thing happens right before the 42-month reign of the antichrist. Michael "stands up" again and there is a battle in heaven.
Daniel 12:1 ESV "At that time shall [stand up] Michael, the great prince who has charge of your people. And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was a nation till that time. But at that time your people shall be delivered, everyone whose name shall be found written in the book.
When this happens, we have the time of greatest distress, or greatest tribulation, of all time. Right after Jesus says to watch for the "abomination that causes desolation, spoken of through the prophet Daniel - let the reader [of Daniel] understand," we find these verses:
Matthew 24:21-22 ESV For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be. (22) And if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short.
Now look back and read Daniel 12:1 again. Notice that there can be only one greatest distress of all time. The people whose names are in the Lamb's Book of Life are delivered [escape] after the greatest distress of all time. Michael fought the demonic princes of nations that rule the middle-east. And apparently there will be a similar battle right before the greatest tribulation of all time.
One thing should be noted here. Michael is a prince who is in charge of “your people.” This greatest distress (or greatest tribulation) of all time is not tribulation for the world. It’s tribulation for Israel. And the Gentile Church is grafted into Israel. This is great tribulation for God’s holy nation. During this time the world will be “eating, drinking, marrying and giving in marriage. The world will submit itself to Islam. Those who do not submit will be in great tribulation.
Matthew 24:37-39 "As the days of Noah were, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. (38) For as in those days which were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ship, (39) and they didn't know until the flood came, and took them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.
Why do we have the have the greatest tribulation of all time when Michael stands up (KJV) or arises (NIV)? Does not stand up mean to 'take a stand,' or to fight? When Michael 'takes a stand', why do we get the great tribulation? Michael takes a stand at the appointed time, yet we have the greatest distress of all time. Is Michael's stand ineffective?
The angel speaking to Daniel is not named. But he speaks of Michael, saying that Michael is the only other who helps him fight the prince of Persia. This vision was given two years after the Medes and the Persians conquered Babylon. King Nebuchadnezzar's dream of a statue (Daniel 2), and Daniel's interpretation, show us these changes in world rule. The statue starts with Babylon the head of gold. Then there is the Medes and Persians which are the chest and arms of silver. Next we have Greece, which is the belly and thighs of bronze. Later, we have the legs of iron, which is the Islamic Caliphate. And finally we have the feet of iron and clay, which is an end-times revival of the Islamic Caliphate.
Michael's purpose is to protect the rulers of the world so that Satan does not completely overtake them. In so doing, Michael is protecting us. When Christ returns, Israel (both Jewish Israel and Gentile Israel) will rule the world. Jesus said to the churches:
Revelation 2:26 He who overcomes, and he who keeps my works to the end, to him I will give authority over the nations.
So, Michael naturally takes a stand to protect the new rulers. Let's look at the verse again.
Daniel 12:1 NIV At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people--everyone whose name is found written in the book--will be delivered.
When Michael takes a stand to protect Israel, Satan is free to completely overtake the antichrist. As long as Michael protects the world rulers, the Church can work to bring more people into the kingdom of God. But when Michael takes a stand to protect Israel, no longer protecting the world rulers, those not in the kingdom of God will be shut out.
John 9:4-5 NIV As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work.  While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.
Matthew 25:10-13 NIV But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut. (11) Later the others also came. 'Sir! Sir!' they said. 'Open the door for us!' (12) But he replied, 'I tell you the truth, I don't know you.' (13) "Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.
Jesus tells us to watch for the signs of His return. Jesus will not return until the signs have been fulfilled. Paul had to correct a few Christians on this point.
2 Thessalonians 2:1-3 KJV Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, (2) That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. (3) Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
The day Christ returns and gathers us, (rapture means caught-up) cannot occur until Michael takes a stand to protect Christians, and removes his protection for the world rulers. When he does this, Satan will completely overtake the antichrist, and the "son of perdition" will be revealed.
2 Thessalonians 2:5-7 NIV Don't you remember that when I was with you I used to tell you these things? (6) And now you know what is holding him back, so that he may be revealed at the proper time. (7) For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way.
The "secret power of lawlessness" was already at work, even back to the time of Daniel. Paul is not talking about some secret revelation that God gave him, which he supposedly shared with the church at Thessalonians, but failed to share in his letters. No, Paul was very good at writing. He was a better writer than he was a speaker. Paul recorded the revelations that God gave him in his letters. Paul was also a Pharisee. He was very educated in Old Testament Scripture. I'm sure Paul had been teaching Daniel to the church at Thessalonica. Paul was simply reminding them of this teaching in Daniel - that Michael must be removed before the antichrist can be revealed, because Michael prevents Satan from completely overtaking the world rulers.
The "one who now holds it back" is Michael. When Michael is taken out of the way, the antichrist will be revealed. From Daniel 12:1, we know that Michael takes his stand before the great tribulation. In Revelation 12, we read about this battle in heaven in which Michael is on our side.
Revelation 12:6-12 ESV and the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, in which she is to be nourished for 1,260 days. (7) Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back, (8) but he was defeated, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. (9) And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world--he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. (10) And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, "Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come , for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. (11) And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony , for they loved not their lives even unto death. (12) Therefore, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!"
Here, we see that the battle in heaven is after the 1260 days. It's also before the time, times, and half a time (Revelation 12:14) during which the antichrist rules over every nation, tribe, people, and language. In other words, this war happens in the middle of the seven-year covenant. The two witnesses prophesy for 1260 days (Revelation 11:3). Then we have the war in heaven during which Satan and his angels are thrown down to the earth. Then we have the great tribulation period during which the antichrist rules for 42 months (Revelation 13:5-7). Apparently the abomination of desolation is set up right after this war in heaven. Again, Michael takes a stand, Satan is thrown out of heaven, and then we have the greatest tribulation of all time.
When Michael’s restraint is removed, Satan will take over the world ruler who is the antichrist. In section 15.5, titled “The People of the Prince,” we talked about how the antichrist is killed and then brought back to life. The soul of Nero comes out of the Abyss and becomes the antichrist. This can happen only after Michael the restrainer is taken out of the way from protecting the rulers of this world.
All this brings us back to Daniel 8. (See section 14.2 of this book).
Daniel 8:9-14 ESV Out of one of them came a little horn, which grew exceedingly great toward the south, toward the east, and toward the glorious land. (10) It grew great, even to the host of heaven. And some of the host and some of the stars it threw down to the ground and trampled on them. (11) It became great, even as great as the Prince of the host. And the regular burnt offering was taken away from him , and the place of his sanctuary was overthrown. (12) And a host will be given over to it together with the regular burnt offering because of transgression, and it will throw truth to the ground, and it will act and prosper. (13) Then I heard a holy one speaking, and another holy one said to the one who spoke, "For how long is the vision concerning the regular burnt offering, the transgression that makes desolate, and the giving over of the sanctuary and host to be trampled underfoot?" (14) And he said to me, "For 2,300 evenings and mornings. Then the sanctuary shall be restored to its rightful state."
In many respects, the vision of Daniel 8 is a mini version of the vision of Daniel 10-12. Both have fulfilled prophecy based on the breakup of Alexander the Great's (Greek) kingdom into four kingdoms. Daniel 8:13 mentions the "transgression that makes desolate" which happens in the end times. Daniel 11:31 mentions the abomination of desolation that occurred in 168 BC, and later Daniel 12:11 mentions the abomination of desolation that happens in the end times. In other words, both prophecies follow history in a way that enables us to recognize the events of the end times and the final reign of the antichrist. Both prophecies identify the war in heaven and the abomination of desolation as immediate precursors to the great tribulation. The vision of Daniel 10-12 gives us a highly expanded view of now-fulfilled history as well as the details of what will be happening during the seven-year covenant of Daniel 9:27. (The abomination of desolation is in the midst of those seven years.)
The now-fulfilled part begins with Daniel 11:2 and continues through verse 11:35. As we will see, the details given leave us no room to doubt the accuracy of that which follows. The unfulfilled part begins with Daniel 11:36 and continues through verse 12:3. Then, in Daniel 12:4 through the end of the chapter, an important question is answered: "When will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?" (Matthew 24:3).
All of this information below about the fulfillment of Daniel 11 was compiled from the following study Bibles. With one exception, there is no information in this chapter about fulfilled prophecy in Daniel 11 that did not come from one of the following study Bibles and commentary. The one exception is that I included a quote from Maccabees.
The NIV Study Bible
Zondervan Bible Publishers
The Life Application Study Bible, NIV
Published by Tyndale House Publications
The Believer's Study Bible
Editor: W.A. Criswell, Ph.D.
Managing Editor: Paige Patterson, Th.D.
Old Testament Editor: E. Ray Clendenen , Ph.D.
New Commentary on the Whole Bible
Based on the classic commentary of
Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown
General Editor: J. D. Douglas
Old Testament Editor: James K. Hoffmeier
Associate Editors: Ted A. Hildebrandt, Mark R. Norton
published by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.
Ryrie Study Bible, NASB
By Charles Cadwell Ryrie, Th.D., Ph.D.
The fulfilled portion of this vision begins with verse 2 of Daniel 11.
Daniel 11:2 NIV "Now then, I tell you the truth: Three more kings will appear in Persia, and then a fourth , who will be far richer than all the others. When he has gained power by his wealth, he will stir up everyone against the kingdom of Greece.
At the time of this vision, Cyrus (or Darius the Mede?) was in power. This vision was in 539 BC. This verse in Daniel says that three more kings would appear after Cyrus. After Cyrus came Cambyses, the son of Cyrus. Cambyses was the first of the three. He ruled from 529 BC to 523 BC. The second of the three was Pseudo-Smerdis (or Gaumata), who ruled a short period from 523 BC to 522 BC. And then the third of the three was Darius I Hystaspes who ruled from 522 BC to 485 BC. (This is the Darius who is confused with Darius the Mede in Daniel. We are assuming that the Darius the Mede who was a friend to Daniel ruled under the authority of Cyrus. Darius the Mede in Daniel is not found in history outside of Daniel. We assume that Darius I Hystaspes was named after the Darius in Daniel.)
The verse in Daniel says the fourth king, after these three, would be very powerful and wealthy. The son of Darius I Hystaspes is Xerxes (or Ahasuerus). He ruled from 486 BC to 465 BC. Xerxes was the most powerful and wealthy of the four. His wealth was proverbial. (We are assuming that Xerxes was named after the father of the Darius in Daniel.)
Xerxes is the husband of Esther in the book of Esther. This book tells how Esther influenced Xerxes and saved the entire Jewish population from being annihilated. This verse in Daniel says that this fourth king, when he has gained his power and wealth, would stir up everyone against Greece. In fulfillment of this prophecy, at the climax of this king's power he invaded Greece, in 480 BC. But Xerxes was defeated at Salamis, and after that his power began to decline.
Daniel 11:3-4 NIV Then a mighty king will appear, who will rule with great power and do as he pleases. (4) After he has appeared, his empire will be broken up and parceled out toward the four winds of heaven. It will not go to his descendants, nor will it have the power he exercised, because his empire will be uprooted and given to others.
This mighty king was Alexander the Great. This was 146 years later, but much of Alexander the Great's motivation was because of Xerxes’ cruel treatment of Greece in the 480 BC invasion. From 334 BC to 330 BC Alexander conquered the lands of the Medo-Persian Empire, Syria, Asia Minor, and Egypt. He even conquered as far as India. We also see Alexander the Great as the goat of Daniel 8:8. Alexander is the large horn that was broken off in the height of his power. In place of Alexander's horn, came "four prominent horns [that] grew up toward the four winds of heaven" (NIV Daniel 8:8). Here in this verse of Daniel 11:4, we also see that his empire would be "parceled out toward the four winds of heaven." This term, "the four winds of heaven" is used in both verses.
The "four winds of heaven" in Daniel 8:8 is talking about the four generals who received power after Alexander the Great died. Daniel 8:8 says that the large horn is broken off at the height of his power. This verse in Daniel 11:4 says the four are not Alexander's descendants, nor would they have the power that Alexander exercised. Alexander the Great died at the age of 32 in 323 BC. This was at the height of his power. He died from malaria with complications of alcoholism. Alexander had no heirs. (The verse says, "It will not go to his descendants.") His empire was parceled out to his four generals, Ptolemy I Soter (323 - 285 BC), Seleucus I Nicator (311-280 BC), Lysimachus, and Cassander. Ptolemy ruled the south, which is Egypt. Seleucus ruled Babylonia and Syria, which is north of Israel. Lysimachus ruled Thrace and parts of Asia Minor, which is east of Israel. And Cassander ruled Macedonia and Greece, west of Israel. Thus we have the "four winds of heaven," north, south, east, and west.
Daniel 11:5 NIV The king of the South will become strong, but one of his commanders will become even stronger than he and will rule his own kingdom with great power.
The king of the south (Ptolemy) became strong. Ptolemy was the king of Egypt. But Ptolemy wanted far more. Seleucus (in the north) was under the sponsorship of Ptolemy. Later, Seleucus became more powerful than Ptolemy. Ptolemy became king in 323 BC, right after the death of Alexander. But Seleucus was not given the title of king until 311 BC, 12 years later. Seleucus was one of Alexander's generals, yet Seleucus was at first under the sponsorship of Ptolemy. So, in the verse, "one of his commanders" is one of Alexander's commanders as well as one of Ptolemy's commanders. Seleucus' original kingdom was Syria and Babylonia, but he later added more territories toward both his east and his west.
Daniel 11:6 NIV After some years, they will become allies. The daughter of the king of the South will go to the king of the North to make an alliance, but she will not retain her power, and he and his power will not last. In those days she will be handed over, together with her royal escort and her father and the one who supported her.
Ptolemy I Soter, the original king of the south, one of Alexander's original generals, died in 285 BC. His son, Ptolemy II Philadelphus (285 - 246 BC) became king of Egypt. Meanwhile, back in the north, Seleucus was murdered in 281 BC. His son Antiochus I Soter ruled until 262 BC. Later, the grandson of Seleucus, Antiochus II Theos (262 - 246 BC), ruled in Syria. Now, this son of Ptolemy (Ptolemy II Philadelphus) and this grandson of Seleucus (Antiochus II Theos) hated each other. The north and the south were major enemies. And Judah was caught in the middle.
But "after some years, they [became] allies." This was in about 250 BC. To bring about this alliance, Ptolemy II gave his daughter in marriage to his enemy, Antiochus II. His daughter's name was Bernice. But as the prophecy says, Bernice would "not retain her power." Also, the prophecy says that "he [Antiochus II] and his power [would] not last." In order for Antiochus II to marry Bernice, he divorced his wife Laodice , and disinherited his son Seleucus Callincus. But his divorced wife Laodice had considerable influence. She didn't just take the divorce and go away. Laodice arranged for the assassinations of both Bernice and Bernice's son. Then, in 247 BC, Laodice poisoned her former husband Antiochus II. So, Bernice did "not retain her power, and he [Antiochus II] and his power [did] not last." Again, Laodice was very influential. Laodice then obtained the throne, and gave the kingdom to her disinherited son, Seleucus II Callinicus (246 - 227 BC).
Daniel 11:7-8 NIV One from her family line will arise to take her place. He will attack the forces of the king of the North and enter his fortress; he will fight against them and be victorious. (8) He will also seize their gods, their metal images and their valuable articles of silver and gold and carry them off to Egypt. For some years he will leave the king of the North alone.
Is the king of the south going to take the murder of Bernice lightly? Ptolemy III Euergetes (246-221), the brother of Bernice, succeeded his father and became king of Egypt. He then avenged his sister's death by conquering Syria and all the territory to the Euphrates River. And, of course, he killed Laodice. This war was from 246 to 241 BC. The prophecy says, "He will also seize their gods, their metal images and their valuable articles of silver and gold and carry them off to Egypt." As spoils of war, Ptolemy III brought back to Egypt 40,000 talents of silver, precious dishes, and 2,400 images, including Egyptian idols (gods) that Cambyses had taken from Egypt to Persia. This prophecy is so accurate that even the list of items plundered fits recorded history! This was how Ptolemy III Euergetes got his name Euergetes. The Egyptians were very pleased with this plunder, and named him Euergetes , which means "benefactor."
Daniel 11:9-10 NIV Then the king of the North will invade the realm of the king of the South but will retreat to his own country. (10) His sons will prepare for war and assemble a great army, which will sweep on like an irresistible flood and carry the battle as far as his fortress.
Seleucus II Callinicus (king of the north) had received a major humiliating defeat. The king of the south had killed his mother, defeated him in war, and had plundered many valuable things. Seleucus II Callinicus tried to seek revenge and tried to invade Egypt, but he was unsuccessful. Then, in 227 BC, 14 years after his humiliating defeat, he fell off his horse. The fall killed him. Verse 10 of the prophecy says, "His sons will prepare for war..." The older of these two sons became king after Seleucus II fell off his horse. His name was Seleucus III Soter (227-223 BC), but his kingship lasted only three years. He was killed during a military campaign in Asia Minor by conspirators. That left his brother, the younger of the two sons, to carry on with the war efforts against the king of the south (Egypt). This younger brother's name was Antiochus III the Great (223-187 BC). He was just 18 years old when he became king, and he ruled for 36 years.
Back in the south, two years after this 18-year old boy became king in the north, the son of Ptolemy III Euergetes became king in the south. His name was Ptolemy IV Philopator (221-204 BC). At this time, Antiochus III the Great managed to recover all of Syria that Ptolemy III Euergetes had conquered. Antiochus III the Great pushed down to Dura, near Caesarea, where he made four-month truce with Ptolemy IV Philopator. But war started again after the four-month truce. The fortress, mentioned in the verse, belonged to the south. It was located at Raphia. This fortress was there to protect Egypt from attacks coming through Edom and Arabia Petrea, near Gaza. At this fortress, Antiochus III was defeated by a smaller army of Ptolemy IV. That's the fulfillment of the verse talking about his sons assembling a great army, which penetrated as far as this fortress. The larger army was defeated by a smaller army at the fortress. This prophecy of Daniel is extremely accurate! This military campaign was from 219-217 BC. This 18-year old king of the north, the younger of the two sons, was just 22 years old when he began this military campaign.
Daniel 11:11-13 NIV Then the king of the South will march out in a rage and fight against the king of the North, who will raise a large army, but it will be defeated. (12) When the army is carried off, the king of the South will be filled with pride and will slaughter many thousands, yet he will not remain triumphant . (13) For the king of the North will muster another army, larger than the first; and after several years, he will advance with a huge army fully equipped.
Verses 11 and 12 are again about this same battle at Raphia , the fortress guarding Egypt. Verse 11 again says that the north raises a large army that is defeated. (Remember, the larger army was defeated by the smaller army.) Verse 12 says the king of the south would be filled with pride and will slaughter many thousands. The historian Polybius records that Antiochus III the Great lost nearly 10,000 infantrymen during this battle at Raphia. Then the verse says that Ptolemy IV would not remain triumphant, that the north would muster another army, larger than the first, after several years. And of course, this happened. Fourteen years later, the war was renewed. During these fourteen years, Antiochus III the Great had several successful victories against Persia and India. Back in the south, Ptolemy V Epiphanes (203-181 BC), the son of Philopator, became king of the south. So, Antiochus III, king of the north, took the opportunity to return again to make war with this new king of the south.
Daniel 11:14 NIV In those times many will rise against the king of the South. The violent men among your own people will rebel in fulfillment of the vision, but without success.
Philip V of Macedonia (king of the west) joined forces with Antiochus III, in the north against Ptolemy V in the south (Egypt). Also, many Jews joined forces with Antiochus III against Egypt. Thus, as the verse says, "many will rise against the king of the South." The verse is also saying that "violent men among your own people will rebel in fulfillment of the vision, but without success." The "men among your own people" are the Jews. They are the people of Daniel. This is talking about the rebellious Jews who revolted against Ptolemy V, joining with Antiochus III, bringing back provisions they took from Egyptian garrisons. This is recorded by the Jewish historian Josephus (Antiquities, 12.3.3). These Jews had hoped to bring about independence of Judah from control by Ptolemy V of Egypt. That's why the verse says, "in fulfillment of vision."
They probably believed that prophecy said they would be freed. But they did not succeed, as these verses of this prophecy states. Actually the campaign by Antiochus III against Egypt was quite successful. But then Judah became controlled by Antiochus III instead of Ptolemy V. They just jumped from one devil to another. Of course prophecy does say that Israel will be free. Israel is free today. But that won't last either. It's not until Christ returns that Israel is truly free.
Daniel 11:15 NIV Then the king of the North will come and build up siege ramps and will capture a fortified city . The forces of the South will be powerless to resist; even their best troops will not have the strength to stand.
So again, Egypt was ruling over Israel. Right at the beginning of the reign of Ptolemy V Ephiphanes, Antiochus III the Great attacked military armies of Egypt at Paneas, which is at the headwaters of the Jordan River, on the northern side of Israel. The Egyptian general there was named Scopas. This Egyptian general fled to the Mediterranean port of Sidon, a strongly fortified city, where he was forced to surrender. Verse 15 is talking about the siege ramps that were built up against this fortified city of Sidon. The verse also says that Egypt would be powerless to resist, even with their best troops. Egypt’s choice armies commanded by Eropus , Menocles, and Damoxenus , were sent to help Scopas, but they were unable to stop Antiochus III, king of the north.
This was right at the beginning of the reign of Ptolemy V Ephiphanes , after the fourteen years since the battle at Raphia . In other words, verse 15 has further detail about the battle spoken of in verse 13. So, verse 14 is a kind of parenthesis that explains about the Jews joining in the conflict between the north and the south. As we saw in the study of verse 14, that parenthesis (verse 14) has a lot of meaning in the overall meaning of prophecy. Israel (the Church) will be victorious over Satan. But it has to be in God's power, not by our own power. We can't use one devil to defeat another, and still hope to be free.
Daniel 11:16 NIV The invader will do as he pleases; no one will be able to stand against him. He will establish himself in the Beautiful Land and will have the power to destroy it.
After Antiochus III, in the north, was victorious over Ptolemy V, in the south (Egypt), he sought to consolidate his control over Israel from which he had expelled the Egyptians. In the verse, "the Beautiful Land" is referring to Israel. Antiochus III was in full control of Israel by 197 BC. This is recorded by the Jewish historian Josephus (Antiquities, 12.2.2).
Daniel 11:17 NIV He will determine to come with the might of his entire kingdom and will make an alliance with the king of the South. And he will give him a daughter in marriage in order to overthrow the kingdom, but his plans will not succeed or help him.
Now, Antiochus III was not satisfied with his victory at Sidon, or in his more established control of Israel. Antiochus III wanted to control Egypt itself. The north wanted to control the south. But instead of using military power, Antiochus III arranged a peace treaty by giving his daughter, Cleopatra, in marriage to the young king Ptolemy V. He also promised a portion of land, including all of Judea, as a dowry. The plan was for him to influence this young king of Egypt though his daughter. That way, he would indirectly control Syria, Cilicia, Lycia, and Egypt though his daughter. That's why the verse says, "He will determine to come with the might of his entire kingdom and will make an alliance with the king of the south." As the verse says, he gave his "daughter in marriage in order to overthrow the kingdom." But, as the prophecy also said, his plans would not succeed. Cleopatra loved her husband more than her father and ignored his schemes.
Daniel 11:18-19 NIV Then he will turn his attention to the coastlands and will take many of them, but a commander will put an end to his insolence and will turn his insolence back upon him. (19) After this, he will turn back toward the fortresses of his own country but will stumble and fall, to be seen no more.
When this scheme of Antiochus III failed, he turned his attention to conquering islands along the coast of Asia Minor in 197 BC and Greece in 192 BC. But these plans failed as well. In 190 BC, a Roman commander named Scipio Asiaticus defeated Antiochus III at Magnesia and put a stop to Anitochus' attacks to the west. Antiochus III was forced by Rome to give up all his land west of the Taurus Mountains. After this, in 188 BC, Antiochus III returned to his own land in shame. He died a year later. He died in 187 BC when he attempted to plunder the temple of Jupiter at Elymais in order to obtain some money that he needed for paying forced tribute, imposed by Rome. But he and his soldiers were killed by the locals at Elymais. So, as the verse says, he "stumbled and fell, to be seen no more." Antiochus III the Great had wanted to reunite Alexander's empire under his authority. He carried out the most vigorous military efforts of anyone since Alexander. But his dream of reestablishing Alexander's empire was never accomplished.
Daniel 11:20 NIV His successor will send out a tax collector to maintain the royal splendor. In a few years, however, he will be destroyed, yet not in anger or in battle.
The successor of Antiochus III the Great was his son Seleucus IV Philopator (187-175 BC). The tax collector mentioned in this verse was Heliodorus. Rome was still requiring tribute that Seleucus IV did not have. So Seleucus IV was heavily taxing his people. In 2 Maccabees 3:4, we learn that Simon, a Benjamite, gave information to Seleucus IV about the treasures in the Jewish temple. Simon gave this information out of hatred for the high priest Onias III. Now Seleucus IV got back Syria and Judah. Syria and Judah had formally been given as a dowry by Antiochus III the Great to Cleopatra. When Seleucus IV got it back, he sent his tax collector Heliodorus to Jerusalem in order to plunder the temple, based on the information given to him by Simon the Benjamite. But "in a few years, however, he [was] destroyed, yet not in anger or in battle." His reign lasted only 12 years. Heliodorus the tax collector, whom Seleucus IV had sent to plunder the temple in Jerusalem, was also the one who killed Seleucus IV. Heliodorus had Seleucus IV poisoned. The only son and heir, Demitrius I, took the throne.
Daniel 11:21 NIV He will be succeeded by a contemptible person who has not been given the honor of royalty. He will invade the kingdom when its people feel secure, and he will seize it through intrigue .
Demitrius I was the rightful heir. At the time, Demitrius I was very young. He actually became Demitrius I later on. But at the time, the throne was taken by a "contemptible person, who [had] not been given the honor of royalty." In other words, he did not have the legal right to the throne, but he got it anyway. This was the younger brother of Seleucus IV, named Antiochus IV Epiphanes (175-164 BC). With the help of Eumenes , king of Pergamos, Antiochus IV Epiphanes immediately (175 BC) took the throne from Demitrius I. So for all practical purposes, Antiochus IV Epiphanes was the successor of Seleucus IV Philopator.
Daniel 11:22 NIV Then an overwhelming army will be swept away before him; both it and a prince of the covenant will be destroyed.
Even though Antiochus IV Epiphanes was not the rightful heir to the throne, he was accepted because he was able to turn aside an invading army, perhaps the Egyptians. The next part of this verse says that both this army and a "prince of the covenant" would be destroyed. In fulfillment of this, Antiochus IV Epiphanes deposed Onias III, the high priest in Jerusalem. So this verse called the high priest a "prince of the covenant." Remember that Simon the Benjamite gave information to Seleucus IV about the treasures in the Jewish temple out of hatred for Onias III. As we shall see, Antiochus IV Epiphanes is the antichrist that is a fore-runner to the end-times antichrist (false prophet). This prophecy will jump from him to the end-times mid-east regional antichrist (false prophet).
Daniel 11:23 NIV After coming to an agreement with him, he will act deceitfully, and with only a few people he will rise to power.
Verse 23 is again referring to the way Antiochus IV got his power. With the help of Eumenes, king of Pergamos, Antiochus IV Epiphanes immediately (175 BC) took the throne from his nephew when his older brother Seleucus IV was poisoned. So the "agreement with him" was the agreement with Eumenes.
Daniel 11:24-25 NIV When the richest provinces feel secure, he will invade them and will achieve what neither his fathers nor his forefathers did. He will distribute plunder, loot and wealth among his followers. He will plot the overthrow of fortresses but only for a time. (25) "With a large army he will stir up his strength and courage against the king of the South. The king of the South will wage war with a large and very powerful army, but he will not be able to stand because of the plots devised against him.
After Antiochus IV was established on his throne and had consolidated his kingdom, he waged war on Egypt in 170 BC. Antiochus advanced his army without meeting resistance all the way to the border of Egypt. There, he was met by the Egyptian army at Pelusium near the Nile Delta. He conquered as far as Memphis. Ptolemy Physcan (king of the south) attempted to withstand the attacks with a "large and very powerful army," but they were defeated by Antiochus IV. He shared his conquered lands with his followers. (The verse says, "He will distribute plunder, loot and wealth among his followers.") (Also see 1 Maccabees 1:19)
His dominion over Egypt was something that had never been done before by any of his predecessors. In other words, he was closer to re-establishing Alexander the Great’s kingdom. The verse says, "He will invade them and will achieve what neither his fathers nor his forefathers did." The end-times antichrist (Mahdi) will do the same. Also, no one has ever ruled over every nation, tribe, people, and language of the world. But the end-times antichrist (global ruler) will rule over every nation, tribe, people, and language of the world (Revelation 13:7).
Daniel 11:26-27 NIV Those who eat from the king’s provisions will try to destroy him; his army will be swept away, and many will fall in battle.  The two kings, with their hearts bent on evil, will sit at the same table and lie to each other, but to no avail, because an end will still come at the appointed time.
Just as the end-times antichrist will be a popular politician, Antiochus IV was also more than just a military leader. After his victories in Egypt, Antiochus IV professed friendship with Ptolemy Physcan and Egypt. Even though Antiochus IV was the victor, he sat at the same table together with Ptolemy Physcan and talked peace. But both kings were lying to each other. Neither king had any intention of keeping the alliance. The same things will be happening in the end-times with the both end-times antichrists. "While people are saying, 'Peace and safety,' destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape" (NIV 1 Thessalonians 5:3). The alliance was soon broken when Ptolemy Physcan made another alliance with his deposed brother Physcon to attack Antiochus' army. And so it has been going for all these years. People talk peace and safety, but it never lasts. Only when Christ is King of Kings will there be lasting world-wide peace. That's why this verse says, "but to no avail, because an end will still come at the appointed time."
This verse is establishing these peace talks between these two evil kings as being the pattern for all of history until the antichrist establishes a false peace, and then there is Armageddon. With Satan in control of this world, this world cannot last more than one generation with the atomic bomb. The atomic bomb was invented right at the end of World War II. The whole world changed after World War II. The end-time generation is the baby-boom generation that was born right after World War II. "This generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened" (NIV Matthew 24:34)
Daniel 11:28 NIV The king of the North will return to his own country with great wealth, but his heart will be set against the holy covenant. He will take action against it and then return to his own country.
Antiochus IV returned to the north with "great wealth" from Egypt. But he had not conquered all of Egypt like he wanted. On his way back from the south to his home in the north, he passed through Judah. Antiochus IV set "his heart against the holy covenant." He took out his frustrations on the Jews. As mentioned earlier, Antiochus IV had deposed Onias III, the high priest. Verse 22 referred to this high priest as "a prince of the covenant." Antiochus IV had earlier deposed Onias III and replaced him with corrupt men who would take orders from Antiochus IV. The first false high priest was Jason. Then, in 172 BC, Menelaus bribed Antiochus IV for the position of high priest. So, when Antiochus IV returned from Egypt with "great wealth" he got the help of Menelaus, and entered the Jewish temple. Antiochus IV took the gold and silver dishes that were used for the sacrifices (2 Maccabees 5:15-21). But this was only the first desecration that Antiochus did against the temple.
In the end-times, it will be much the same. It's the false prophet antichrist (Mahdi) who desecrates the temple. The false prophet sets up a statue, probably on the temple mount, and requires the whole world to worship the statue. This is the abomination of desolation in the end-times. But the abomination of desolation done by Antiochus IV is a few verses down.
Daniel 11:29-30a NIV At the appointed time he will invade the South again, but this time the outcome will be different from what it was before. (30) Ships of the western coastlands will oppose him, and he will lose heart.
The Hebrew word used here for "western coastlands" is:
Patrial from an unused name denoting Cyprus (only in the plural); a Kittite or Cypriote; hence an islander in general, that is, the Greeks or Romans on the shores opposite Palestine:— Chittim, Kittim.
In other words, way back in 529 BC, Daniel had predicted all these events, including the fact that Rome would be able to oppose this king of kings. Two years after Antiochus IV had his partial victory in Egypt, he marched against Egypt again. But this time, in 168 BC, he was stopped by the Romans. The Romans sent ships and met him at Eleusis. The Roman ambassador Popilius Loenas met him with a decree from the Roman senate, forbidding him from attacking Egypt. Antiochus IV asked for time to consider. But the Roman ambassador drew a circle in the sand around Antiochus and demanded an answer before stepping out of the circle. To step out of the circle without agreeing to the decree would have been the equivalent to declaring war on Rome. Antiochus agreed to the demands of Rome and returned home.
Daniel 11:30b-32 NIV Then he will turn back and vent his fury against the holy covenant. He will return and show favor to those who forsake the holy covenant. (31) His armed forces will rise up to desecrate the temple fortress and will abolish the daily sacrifice. Then they will set up the abomination that causes desolation . (32) With flattery he will corrupt those who have violated the covenant, but the people who know their God will firmly resist him.
Antiochus IV had taken his anger out on Judea when he had failed to completely conquer Egypt two years earlier. This time, the Romans completely stopped him, and had humiliated him. So, this time Antiochus IV was a real antichrist, and took out his anger like never before on God's people. Antiochus IV sent his general Apollonius with 22,000 soldiers to Jerusalem on a "peace mission." But they attacked Jerusalem on the Sabbath and killed 80,000 people. They took 40,000 prisoners, women and children, to be sold as slaves (2 Maccabees 5:5-14). This number was most of the inhabitants. They plundered and burned the city. Antiochus IV made it illegal to follow Judaism, including the religious festivals and circumcision. Anyone caught doing so was put to death. Antiochus IV commanded that all copies of the Law be burned. In 167 BC, Antiochus IV erected an altar to Zeus on the altar of burnt offering in front of the temple. He had a pig sacrificed on the altar. (Pigs are the ultimate unclean animal and it would be major sacrilege to sacrifice one on the altar.)
The Jews were forced to sacrifice a pig on the altar every month, on the 25th day, in honor of Antiochus IV's birthday. This started with the 25th of the month of Kislev on the Jewish calendar. The Jews had victory over Antiochus IV exactly three years later, on Kislev 25. So, Kislev 25 became Hanukkah. But the 25th of the month was originally this antichrist's birthday. It's interesting that Christians celebrate the birthday of Christ on the 25th of December, which is about the same month as the Jewish month Kislev. But the 25th of December is not Christ's birthday. It's the birthday of a Pagan god. Is Kislev 25 and December 25 a coincidence? Antiochus IV offered great reward to any Jew who would worship Zeus, the god of Greece.
Antiochus IV Epiphanes identified himself with his god, in an attempt to make his religion the world standard religion. (1 Maccabees 1:41; 2 Maccabees 6:7). The false prophet (Mahdi) antichrist of the end times will do the same. He will try and force Islam on the world.
Antiochus IV Epiphanes erected a statue of Zeus in front of the temple in Jerusalem. This was the "abomination that causes desolation, spoken of through the prophet Daniel - let the reader understand - standing in the holy place" (NIV Matthew 24:15). Jesus was teaching us to watch for the same thing to happen again. It will happen again. In Revelation 13:11-18, the false prophet erects a statue and forces all the world to worship it. The abomination of desolation is a statue on the temple mount.
These verses are quoted from the New American [Catholic] Bible:
1 Maccabees 1:54-63 On the fifteenth day of the month Chislev, in the year one hundred and forty-five [December, 167 BC], the king erected the horrible abomination upon the altar of holocausts, and in the surrounding cities of Judah they built pagan altars. (55) They also burnt incense at the doors of houses and in the streets. (56) Any scrolls of the law which they found they tore up and burnt. (57) Whoever was found with a scroll of the covenant, and whoever observed the law, was condemned to death by royal decree. (58) So they used their power against Israel, against those who were caught, each month, in the cities. (59) On the twenty-fifth day of each month they sacrificed on the altar erected over the altar of holocausts. (60) Women who had their children circumcised were put to death, in keeping with the decree, (61) with the babies hung from their necks; their families also and those who had circumcised them were killed. (62) But many in Israel were determined and resolved in their hearts not to eat anything unclean; (63) they preferred to die rather than to be defiled with unclean food or to profane the holy covenant; and they did die. Terrible affliction was upon Israel.
Here is verse 32 of Daniel 11 again:
Daniel 11:32 NIV With flattery he will corrupt those who have violated the covenant, but the people who know their God will firmly resist him.
The abomination of desolation, on the temple mount, inspired the Maccabean revolt. Exactly three years later, to the very day, the temple was cleansed. The temple was rededicated by the Jewish leader Judas Maccabaeus. The book of Maccabees, in the Apocrypha, tells us all about their fight for freedom.
When Antiochus IV first took the throne from his nephew, he gave himself the name Epiphanes, which means "Illustrious One." In other words, he thought of himself as well known and very distinguished. But he was considered untrustworthy by the people and was nicknamed Epimanes which means "the Madman." Epimanes rhymes with Epiphanes. This "Madman" foolishly joked and had fun with the lowest class of people. He bathed with them in public baths, and he threw rocks at passersby.
Back in Daniel chapter 4, we learned about how Nebuchadnezzar had a dream of a tree and then was given the mind of a beast for seven years. In other words, he went mad for seven years. Nebuchadnezzar was a forerunner of antichrist, but after the seven years he gave glory to God. So, he did not stay being an antichrist. Throughout Scripture, the wicked are spoken of as foolish and the righteous are spoken of as wise. But the foolish believe that they are wise. Antiochus IV believed he was well known and distinguished. But the people saw him as a "Madman." Just as Nebuchadnezzar was a madman for seven years, Antiochus IV Epiphanes reigned a short eleven years as a Madman. Antiochus IV Epiphanes is the antichrist that Jesus was speaking about when he said, "So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel - let the reader understand" (NIV Matthew 24:15). Antiochus IV Epiphanes set up that abomination of desolation to which Jesus was referring. The disciples would have understood this because they were Jews and they celebrated Hanukkah (John 10:22).
But we must watch for another madman who believes he is wise. As a matter of fact, the whole world will believe his is wise. There will be two madmen. The first madman will reign as the Mahdi over the middle-east region for seven years. The second madman will rule over the entire globe for 42 months. This madman will be revealed without a doubt (2 Thessalonians 2:3) when the first madman sets up the abomination that causes desolation, just as Antiochus IV set up the abomination that causes desolation. Nebuchadnezzar literally became a madman for seven years. Antiochus IV died literally insane in Persia in 164 BC.
Daniel 11:33-34 NIV Those who are wise will instruct many, though for a time they will fall by the sword or be burned or captured or plundered. (34) When they fall, they will receive a little help, and many who are not sincere will join them. (35) Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined , purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.
These verses are transitional between Antiochus IV Epiphanes and the End-Times antichrist. Those who are wise are God's people, from that age until the end-times. The wise are seen by the world as foolish. But the wise are "refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end." We must be spotless to be ready for the time of the end. We must completely overcome sin. Understand that sin is blinding. Sin will bring you into foolishness. Those who continue to sin believe they are wise. They somehow believe they are saved from sin, even if they continue to sin. It’s foolishness, but the foolish are blind to the truth. But the end "will still come at the appointed time."
This precisely accurate fulfilled prophecy of Daniel 11 now jumps into the future. Its accuracy will no doubt be just as precise.
Daniel 11:36-39 The king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvelous things against the God of gods ; and he shall prosper until the indignation be accomplished; for that which is determined shall be done. (37) Neither shall he regard the gods of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god; for he shall magnify himself above all. (38) But in his place shall he honor the god of fortresses; and a god whom his fathers didn't know shall he honor with gold, and silver, and with precious stones, and pleasant things. (39) He shall deal with the strongest fortresses by the help of a foreign god: whoever acknowledges him he will increase with glory; and he shall cause them to rule over many, and shall divide the land for a price.
In chapter 8 of this book, we carefully examined Daniel 11:36-45. Verses 36 to 39 talk about the king who does as he pleases. This seems to be the man of lawlessness that Paul wrote about in 2 Thessalonians 2:3-6. Next, Daniel 11:40-45 seems to go back and talk about the king of the north and the king of the south. As discussed in chapter 8 of this book, these verses seem to be talking about three different kings.
Those who believe the passage is about two kings say that the king who does as he pleases is the king of the north. And that this is the antichrist. Those who believe the passage is about three kings usually say that the king who does as he pleases is the antichrist, while the king of the north and the king of the south are leaders of Islamic nations who destroy themselves. This allows for the antichrist to come on the scene with the Islamic nations no longer an issue.
The view of this author is there are two end-time antichrists for a total of three kings in the unfulfilled prophecy of Daniel 11. The king who does as he pleases is the first beast. He reigns over every nation, tribe, people, and language for 42 months. The king of the north is the false prophet (Mahdi) who will rule over the middle-east region of the world. And just like the fulfilled part of this prophecy, the king of the south corresponds with Egypt, who will fight with the king of the north.
Daniel 11:40-45 At the time of the end shall the king of the south contend with him; and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass through. (41) He shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown; but these shall be delivered out of his hand: Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon. (42) He shall stretch forth his hand also on the countries; and the land of Egypt shall not escape. (43) But he shall have power over the treasures of gold and of silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt; and the Libyans and the Ethiopians shall be at his steps. (44) But news out of the east and out of the north shall trouble him; and he shall go forth with great fury to destroy and utterly to sweep away many. (45) He shall plant the tents of his palace between the sea and the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him.
The Bible, especially the Old Testament, is predominantly middle-east centric. Of these two antichrists, the false prophet is spoken of far more in the Old Testament than the world ruler. Both, however, are found in Daniel.
The false prophet will reign for the entire seven years. He is the prince of Daniel 7 who sets up the abomination of desolation in the middle of that week. The global ruler begins his global reign after the middle of the seven years, which is after the abomination of desolation. Daniel 11:35-45 can be viewed as being about the first half of the seven years. Then, Daniel 12:1 picks up with Michael taking a stand. This is the war in heaven and happens in the middle of the seven years. Then Daniel 12:1-2 talk about the great tribulation and the resurrection at the end of the seven years.
Daniel 12:1a "At that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince who stands for the children of your people; and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time.
Chapter 10 of this book is about the war in heaven and the abomination of desolation, which is in the middle of the seven years. Michael “takes a stand” and fights for the “children of your people.” As in says in Revelation 12, Satan is thrown down to the earth. But “woe to the earth and to the sea, because the devil has gone down to you, having great wrath, knowing that he has but a short time” (Revelation 12:12). Right after this war, we have the abomination of desolation and great tribulation. This verse in Daniel refers to the great tribulation as “a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time.”
After the great tribulation comes the resurrection. I have moved the last sentence in verse 1 and paired it with verse 2. The phrase, “At that time” occurs at the start of verse 1 as well as at the start of this sentence. It’s a transitional phrase that indicates a new sub-topic. “At that time” indicates it’s the time of the end. It’s the next thing that happens at the time of the end. After the tribulation is the resurrection. It’s the next thing that happens.
The Hebrew word in this sentence for “delivered” is more often understood to mean “escape.” At the resurrection, we will “escape” from the grave. Those in the Lamb’s book of life will “escape.” Some will claim that those written in the book of life will be “delivered” from the great tribulation. And the unfortunate placement of this sentence with verse 1 would seem to suggest such. Also, the translation of the Hebrew word as “delivered” instead of “escape” also seems to suggest that we will “escape” from the great tribulation.
However, we know there are “tribulation saints” who are martyred during the great tribulation. They do not escape. Yet their names are in the book of life. Scripture does not teach that we are delivered from persecution and tribulation. But Scripture does teach we will escape from the grave at the resurrection.
Daniel 12:1b - 2 At that time your people shall be delivered [escape], everyone who shall be found written in the book. Many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.
Chapter 12 of this book includes a discussion of this verse in a broader discussion of the resurrection. We learned about how important it is to interpret Scripture using progressive revelation. If you really want to understand how the author and his audience would have understood Scripture, you have to purposefully ignore all Scripture that was written later in time. Then, as you progress forward in what has been written, you interpret each passage in the context of what has already been written. Later Scripture can add additional information. And it can refine our understanding of what was previously written. But it cannot dramatically change what came before to the extent that the original author and his audience would have disagreed.
This verse in Daniel was written in the context of Isaiah 26. Both verses refer to those who “dwell in the dust” (Isaiah 26:19) of the earth. Both verses refer to the dead as being asleep and awakening. And in that context, Isaiah 26 teaches that not everyone will be resurrected. Isaiah 26:14 says the wicked will not be resurrected.
Isaiah 26:14 They are dead, they will not live; they are shades, they will not arise; to that end you have visited them with destruction and wiped out all remembrance of them.
Daniel 12:2 says “many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake.” “Many” means not everyone. This verse should be interpreted in this context of Isaiah 26. Not everyone will be resurrected. But of those who are resurrected, some will be resurrected to everlasting life. Others will be resurrected to shame. And of those resurrected to shame, some will fall into everlasting contempt.
In chapter 12 of this book we proceed to the New Testament, specifically to John 5, Acts 24:15, and Revelation 20. We did a detailed study of the resurrection using this method of progressive revelation. The bottom line is that with progressive revelation, the resurrection is not at all understood to be like we have been traditionally taught.
Is it possible that this generation, for the first time since Daniel, is now able to understand what Daniel could not understand? That’s exactly what Daniel was told. As we will see in the next section, the understanding of this vision was sealed until the time of the end. And this vision includes the resurrection. There is one final verse of unfulfilled prophecy that we need to look at before we move on into this discussion about the sealing of the vision and its understanding. It’s about Christ’s millennial reign.
Daniel 12:3 ESV And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.
The wise are those who are raised to everlasting life. The foolish are raised, but they are still under judgment. The wicked will not be resurrected. The wise will “shine like the brightness of the sky above.” They will reign with Christ. During the Messianic age to come, the wise will “turn many to righteousness.” This means that the foolish will still have the opportunity for eternal life by living under the reign of the wise. The foolish will still have the opportunity to learn righteousness. The stars are symbolic of the angels. The wise will have spiritual bodies, like the angels who live in the sky (heavens) above.
Daniel 12:3 is about the millennial reign of Christ. This verse concludes the prophecy of future events. But it’s not the end of the vision. The vision continues with a discussion about the most obvious question that would arise when given this fantastic vision of the future. When will all this happen? The fantastic climax would have to be the resurrection itself. But we must remember that “all these things” must include the millennial reign of Christ in verse 3. Now let’s go through the text verse by verse.
Daniel 12:4 But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run back and forth, and knowledge shall be increased."
The most common interpretation of verse 4 is that in the end times, knowledge and travel will increase. It’s true that knowledge has exploded in this generation. And this generation has seen world travel become very routine. But in context, the verse may actually be talking about an increase in the understanding of Bible prophecy, including an understanding about this vision. Daniel is told to “shut up the words,” and to “seal the book, even to the time of the end.” In other words, understanding of the words of this vision must wait on the time of the end. Until that time, the book is “sealed.” This would be like a scroll (book) that is rolled up and wax seals are placed on the scroll so that it should not be opened except by someone authorized to do so. Until that time, the words are locked up inside the scroll. Of course people have been reading the words of this vision since that time. But the understanding of the vision has been sealed.
The verse also says that many will “run back and forth.” In context, is this really talking about an increase in travel? Consider these other verses which have same phrase.
2 Chronicles 16:9 For the eyes of Yahweh run back and forth throughout the whole earth, to show himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him. Herein you have done foolishly; for from henceforth you shall have wars.
Jeremiah 5:1 Run you back and forth through the streets of Jerusalem, and see now, and know, and seek in the broad places of it, if you can find a man, if there are any who does justly, who seeks truth; and I will pardon her.
Amos 8:12 They will wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east; they will run back and forth to seek the word of Yahweh, and will not find it.
As you can tell from these verses, to “run to and fro ” (KJV) is a Hebrew phrase that means to search for knowledge. Our verse in Daniel 12:4 says, “Many shall run back and forth, and knowledge shall be increased.” In other words, the running to and fro is the effort that it takes to increase knowledge. It can be thought of as going to and fro in the Scriptures looking for answers. And in the context of this verse, the knowledge that is increased, in the end times, is an understanding about the word of God in the vision itself. In other words, in the end times, the scroll will be understood. (See the scroll with seven seals Revelation 5 and 6. The Lamb of God is the only one worthy to break the seals and open the scroll.) But in Daniel’s time, the words of the scroll were sealed and could not be understood.
Of course, as time came and went, much of this vision has become understandable. The first part of this prophecy was fulfilled starting with the three kings that came after Cyrus. The vision was given in the third year of Cyrus. Thus, as the events were fulfilled over time I’m sure they were understood. The KJV and other translations include an assumed word in verse 4. The words are sealed “even” until the time of the end. I would bet that the KJV translators included this word “even” because they understood that much of the vision has already been fulfilled. But the end time aspect of this vision is not yet fulfilled. So only the end time generation will fully understand this vision. But I believe this is the end time generation. I believe we can almost completely understand the vision today.
But there is a question that is asked and answered in the vision, of which the answer is difficult to understand. It’s the most obvious question to ask given the fantastic and astounding nature of the resurrection. How long will it be before all these things are fulfilled? In other words, when will all this happen? The question is asked by an angel who stands on the side of a river.
Daniel 12:5-6 Then I, Daniel, looked, and behold, there stood other two, the one on the brink of the river on this side, and the other on the brink of the river on that side. (6) One said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?
Matthew 24:3 As he sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, "Tell us, when will these things be? What is the sign of your coming, and of the end of the age ?"
Matthew 24:15 "When, therefore, you see the abomination of desolation, which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand),
“How long shall it be until the end of these wonders?” In other words, “When will all this happen?” The disciples asked the same question. And Jesus gave a very similar answer. Jesus said, “When you see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by the prophet Daniel, let the reader understand.” Understand what? The reader of what? It can’t be the reader of Jesus because he was speaking, not writing. And it can’t be the reader of Matthew because Jesus said the words, not Matthew. Some have claimed that Matthew inserted these words as a commentary. But Mark said the exact same thing. “Let the reader understand” is clearly the words of Jesus. He is saying the reader of Daniel should understand, at least by the time of the abomination of desolation. But what in Daniel should we understand? Is this not a very strong hint that we need to read Daniel, especially where it talks about the abomination, and let Daniel be the background context for the words of Jesus? What in Daniel are we to understand at the time of the abomination? Would it not be the answer to the very same question that was just asked by the disciples?
“What is the sign of your coming, and of the end of the age?” (Matthew 24:3) The answer was given in Daniel, but Daniel didn’t understand the answer. Jesus is saying that when we see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by the prophet Daniel, that we will understand the answer to the very same question. The question was answered in Daniel. But the reader of Daniel did not understand the answer even at the time of Christ.
This passage in Daniel also speaks about the abomination of desolation. It’s given as a sign in Daniel. The same sign is given by Jesus, when the disciples asked the very same question. Is this a coincidence? We must use Daniel 12 as a context for the interpretation of Matthew 24. Without understanding of Old Testament context, the New Testament can be grossly misunderstood. Matthew 24 is no exception. These words of Jesus can be badly misinterpreted when taken out of the stated Old Testament context.
Matthew 24:33-36 Even so you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. (34) Most certainly I tell you, this generation will not pass away, until all these things are accomplished. (35) Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. (36) But no one knows of that day and hour, not even the angels of heaven, but my Father only.
In other words, at the time of Christ, no man knew the day or the time when Christ would return. The answer to this question was given in Daniel. However, the words were sealed until the time of the end. The wicked will not understand. But the wise will understand at the time of the end (Daniel 12:10). Now that we are in the time of the end, we can understand the answer to the question which was asked and answered in Daniel.
When Matthew 24 is read outside the context of Daniel 12, the phrase “no man knows the day or the hour” is misinterpreted. The common understanding is that no man will ever know the day or the hour until it happens. But that is a different verb tense. Jesus was saying that know man knew the day or hour at that time. But when we start to see the signs, we can know the day and time of Christ’s return and the resurrection.
Matthew 24:31-36 He will send out his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together his chosen ones from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other. (32) "Now from the fig tree learn this parable. When its branch has now become tender, and puts forth its leaves, you know that the summer is near. (33) Even so you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. (34) Most certainly I tell you, this generation will not pass away, until all these things are accomplished. (35) Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. (36) But no one knows of that day and hour , not even the angels of heaven, but my Father only.
At the time of Christ, not even the angel knew the day. But learn the lesson of the fig tree, which is Israel. When Israel becomes a nation again, then we know the resurrection is right at the door. As a matter of fact, the generation that is born when Israel is born as a nation will also see the resurrection. That will be the end time generation. They will be able to know the day and time of the resurrection.
When these words of Jesus are interpreted outside the context of Daniel 12, then it can be incorrectly said that no man will ever know day before it happens. But as we will see from Daniel 12:11, the resurrection will be 1290 days after the abomination. According to Daniel’s vision, the wicked will not understand the answer to the question. On the other hand, the wise generation, at the time of the end, will understand the answer to the question asked by both the angel in Daniel’s vision and by the disciples. Christians who take this out of the context of Daniel 12 wind up unknowingly putting themselves into the category of the wicked by saying they will not know the day or the hour.
Why does Jesus include the angels in heaven as not knowing the day or the hour (verse 36 above)? In Daniel, it was an angel who asked the question. The more one connects the dots between these two passages, the more one realizes that Jesus assumed his audience (the disciples) to be familiar with Daniel 12.
The answer to the question of when will the resurrection occur, and when Christ will return, as given in Daniel is:
Daniel 12:7 ESV And I heard the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the stream; he raised his right hand and his left hand toward heaven and swore by him who lives forever that it would be for a time, times, and half a time, and that when the shattering of the power of the holy people comes to an end all these things would be finished .
A “time, times, and half a time” is usually translated as 3 ½ years. But this does not answer the question. I believe each “time” is a thousand years. Early Christians and early Jews both believed that from Adam there would be seven thousand years. It’s a week of millennia. “With the Lord, a thousand years is as a day and a day is as a thousand years.” The book of Jubilees has a very similar statement where there is no doubt that God’s days are literally a thousand years.
Let’s go back and review the question itself. “How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?” It’s not asking how long the vision would last. It’s asking how much time would elapse, from the time of the vision, until everything in the vision has been fulfilled. Thus, in order to understand the answer, we must determine when the vision itself was given. The answer is going to give us the amount of time from Daniel’s vision until everything in the vision is accomplished. And the vision includes the millennial reign of Christ.
So from the time of this vision, it would be three and a half millennia until all these wonders are fulfilled. All these wonders, as stated in the text, includes the wise teaching righteousness during the millennial reign of Christ. So this vision was basically in the middle of the millennial week. But not exactly in the middle. You can’t just divide it by two.
The answer to the question also said, “When the power of the holy people has been finally broken, all these things will be completed." (NIV translation). The Hebrew word for “power” occurs initially in Scripture in Genesis at the Garden of Eden. Eve reached out and grasped the fruit. This word translated “power” is the same Hebrew word and means closed fist. We also reach out and grasp sin. But this “power” must be overcome in all the holy people that God is going to save. This teaching about holiness and righteousness continues throughout the millennium. At the end of the thousand-year reign of Christ, the “power” of the holy people to sin will finally be broken.
The term “time, times, and half a time” is generally understood to be one for time (singular), two for times (plural), and half a time. So we are talking about one millennium, two millennium, and half a millennium. Reverse the order and you have half a millennium from the middle of the week until Christ, followed by two millennia from Christ’s first coming until his second coming, followed by Christ’s millennial reign. This is the answer to the question.
Daniel chapters 2:4 through 7:28 was written in Aramaic. This vision at the end of Daniel was written in Hebrew. In Daniel 7, “time, times and half a time” actually does refer to 3 ½ years. The two occurrence of “time, times, and half a time” actually use different words for “time.” Strong’s definition for the word in Daniel 7:25 is, “a set time, technically a year.” Strong’s definition for the word in Daniel 12:7 includes, “a fixed time or season.” Thus, the word for ‘time’ in Daniel 12 can easily be more of an age than a year.
In Daniel 12:7 it’s talking about half the millennial week. In Daniel 7:25 it’s talking about half a week of years. But we can take a hint from this that there is a parallelism between the week of the great tribulation and the millennial week. Just as the millennial week is not divided exactly in the middle, I don’t believe the week of the great tribulation is divided exactly in the middle.
Daniel 12:8-10 I heard, but I didn't understand: then said I, my lord, what shall be the issue of these things? (9) He said, Go your way, Daniel; for the words are shut up and sealed until the time of the end. (10) Many shall purify themselves, and make themselves white , and be refined; but the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand; but those who are wise shall understand .
The fulfilled portion of this vision was understood as the events unfolded. The end-times portion of this vision can be understood only by the end-times generation. We are that generation. Those who are wise in this generation can understand what Daniel was not able to understand. But the wicked will continue to be wicked. They will not be expecting Christ to return. They will not be looking for the signs of his return. And for many, when the New Jerusalem does appear, they will not understand the signs enough to know that it really is the appearance of Jesus Christ.
Daniel 12:11-12 From the time that the continual burnt offering shall be taken away, and the abomination that makes desolate set up, there shall be one thousand two hundred ninety days. (12) Blessed is he who waits, and comes to the one thousand three hundred thirty-five days.
Daniel 12:11 tells us that from the abomination is 1290 days. 1290 days until what? By context of Daniel 12:2, which is obviously the climax of the vision, it’s 1290 days from the abomination to the resurrection. Then we are told that those who wait for the 1335 days are blessed.
What is going on here? Those who are resurrected do not have to wait. They don’t experience time. They “sleep on the dust of the earth,” according to verse 2. But those who wait until the end of the 1335 days must be alive because they have to wait. They have to go through the great tribulation. And that tribulation (persecution) will bring about holiness. So they are blessed with holiness. The difference between the 1335 days and the 1290 days is 45 days. We can conclude from this that the rapture (for those who are alive) is 45 days after the resurrection. I believe this is where Paul gets that fact that the “dead in Christ will rise first. After that, “we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air” (2 Thessalonians 4:16-17). In other words, the dead in Christ will rise 45 days before the rapture.
Abomination of Desolation
Reign of the Antichrist
Resurrection on the Last Day
Six Bowls of Wrath
The Wedding Banquet
Some will question why the six bowls of wrath are after the resurrection. Many have assumed the six bowls of wrath are simply scattered throughout the second half of the seven years. However, Jesus described the time of the wrath as being a time of sudden destruction.
Luke 17:26-32 As it happened in the days of Noah, even so will it be also in the days of the Son of Man. (27) They ate, they drank, they married, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ship, and the flood came, and destroyed them all. (28) Likewise, even as it happened in the days of Lot: they ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built; (29) but in the day that Lot went out from Sodom, it rained fire and sulfur from the sky, and destroyed them all. (30) It will be the same way in the day that the Son of Man is revealed . (31) In that day, he who will be on the housetop, and his goods in the house, let him not go down to take them away. Let him who is in the field likewise not turn back. (32) Remember Lot's wife!
If the bowls of wrath will be happening all during the second half of the seven years, then it doesn’t seem like a time where people are “eating, drinking, marrying and giving in marriage.” The wrath of God comes suddenly at a time when people are not expecting it to happen. It’s not spread out over three and a half years. Also, consider the resurrection and wrath verse in Isaiah 26.
Isaiah 26:17-21 Like a pregnant woman who writhes and cries out in her pangs when she is near to giving birth, so were we because of you, O LORD; (18) we were pregnant, we writhed, but we have given birth to wind. We have accomplished no deliverance in the earth, and the inhabitants of the world have not fallen. (19) Your dead shall live; their bodies shall rise. You who dwell in the dust, awake and sing for joy! For your dew is a dew of light, and the earth will give birth to the dead. (20) Come, my people, enter your chambers, and shut your doors behind you ; hide yourselves for a little while until the fury has passed by. (21) For behold, the LORD is coming out from his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity, and the earth will disclose the blood shed on it, and will no more cover its slain .
Here we see that the wrath of God is after the resurrection. God’s people are told to “hide yourselves” after the resurrection and during the time of the wrath. So it’s after the 1290 days. I believe the six bowls of wrath are during the 45 days between the 1290 and the 1335. Then comes the rapture followed by the wedding banquet. Those resurrected in the first resurrection with spiritual bodies would not be hurt by God’s wrath. They will have spiritual bodies.
But what about the first half of the seven years? We know that the two witnesses will prophesy for 1260 days (Revelation 11). After that, they will be killed and lie dead in the streets of Jerusalem for 3 ½ days. Then they will be resurrected. Why 3 ½ days? Why not simply 3 days or 4 days? In Scripture, I think it’s obvious that 3 ½ days is half of seven days. We can conclude that after the two witnesses are resurrected, the antichrist will set up the abomination of desolation and the 1290 days will unfold after that.
So I think that what we have is 1260 days, followed by 7 days, followed by 1290 days. Add this up and you get 2557 days. 365.25 days per year times 7 years is 2556.75 days. Round up for leap year and you get 2557 days. In other words, 1260 days, 7 days, and 1290 days is exactly seven years.
Daniel 12:13 But go you your way until the end be; for you shall rest, and shall stand in your lot , at the end of the days.
Daniel rested in the grave. He will be raised up at the end of days, at the time of the resurrection. As it says in verse 2, “those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake.” They are not in heaven. They are in the dust of the earth. Daniel will continue to sleep until the time of the resurrection. Of course, the natural question is, when will it happen? Only the wise know the day and the time when the resurrection will take place. We are part of the end-times generation. So we can calculate the day and the time. We can be wrong. But the closer we get the more sure we can be of our calculations. And when we see the abomination of desolation, we will know that it’s 1290 days later.
Back at the end of section 15.12, we concluded that the seventy weeks of Daniel comes to an end in 2016. The seven-year great tribulation is an additional week of the covenant, which follows the seventy weeks. This computation assumes 2016 and attempts to confirm that date by seeing where it takes us.
We will take a look at the millennial week and compare it with the seven-year week of the covenant. Both are divided in half with a “time, times, and half a time” being one of the halves. But the division is not exactly in the middle. Based on 2016 we will show how the millennial week is divided, and compute this back to the vision in Daniel 12, where Daniel was told how long it would be until all these wonders are fulfilled.
There are 1290 days from the abomination of desolation to the resurrection. Before the 1290 days, the two witnesses prophesy for 1260 days. After these 1260 days, they are killed and lie dead in the streets of Jerusalem for 3 ½ days. Then they come back to life and go up to heaven. Would this make the antichrist mad? Perhaps he sets up the abomination of desolation in response to this event. Why the half’-day? Scripture usually gives a whole number of days. This would seem to be half of 7 days. 1260 day, plus 7, plus 1290 days is 2557 days. Seven years is 365.25 days times 7 which is 2556.75 days. Round up for leap year and we get 2557 days. In other words, the seven years is divided in the middle by a seven-day period. But the division is not exactly in the middle. It’s in the midst of the seven-years.
We have been saying that the millennial reign of Christ starts with the seven-year reign of the false prophet. The seven years is the first seven years of the millennium. Also, we are working with the assumption that this seventh millennium begins in 2016. Let’s work with these two assumptions and see if what kind of confirmation we can get.
My interpretation of the 70 weeks of Daniel 9 is based on the decree of Cyrus as the start of the 62 weeks. From the decree of Cyrus until the birth of Christ is 62 weeks of years, which is 434 years. I also believe the birth of Christ was about 3 BC. This would put the decree of Cyrus as 437 BC. (I do not accept the traditional conversions of Bible king-dates to calendar dates.)
Let’s look at a calendar where the year zero is the time of Adam. We can call this the calendar of Adam. The sevens in Scripture are often divided into a four-two-one pattern. Four days God created the heavens and the earth. So four is the number for the heavens and the earth. Two days God created abundant life. Two is the number of life. One day God rested. It’s the Sabbath. Christ reigns during the Sabbath of this millennial week as “Lord of the Sabbath.” We can also find this four-two-one pattern in the seals, trumpets, and bowls of Revelation.
We are assuming that the Sabbath millennium begins in 2016 AD. And we are going to divide the millennial week into three parts according to a ratio of 1290-to-7-to-1260. In other words, the first half of the millennial week corresponds to the 1290 days the antichrist reigns. The second half of the millennial week corresponds to the 1260 days the two witnesses prophesy.
So what year of Adam is 2016 AD? The start of the seventh millennium would be the year 6000 of Adam. The first coming of Christ would mark the boundary between the four millennial days and the two millennial days.
2016 AD = 6000 of Adam.
0016 AD = 4000 of Adam (Christ is 19 years old.)
4000 – 16 is 3984. If we add 3984 to a Gregorian date, we get the year of Adam.
The decree of Cyrus is 437 BC or -436 AD (There is no year zero).
This is based on Christ’s birth being 3 BC and the 62 weeks of Daniel 9.
So the decree of Cyrus would be 3984 – 436 = 3548 of Adam.
The decree of Cyrus was given in the first year of Cyrus (Ezra 1:1).
This vision, and its question, took place on the third year of Cyrus (Daniel 10:1).
So we need to add 2 years to get the date of this vision.
The answer to the question was that it was a “time, times, and half a time” from the time of the question until everything in the vision is fulfilled.
3548 of Adam + 2 years = 3550 of Adam for the date of this vision.
Now we need to map the seven years of the tribulation with the millennial week. The seven years of tribulation is divided into 1260 days plus 7 days plus 1290 days for a total of 2557 days. The 7000 years is divided into 2557 “big-days.”
How many years would each “big-day” of this millennial week be?
7000 years / 2557 big-days is 2.73758 years/big-day. In other words, we are thinking of 2.73758 years as being a big-day. After 2557 of these big-days, we have a millennial week.
Now, let’s see how many big-days this vision would be from the start of the seven years of the tribulation, if the seven years were mapped onto the 7000 years from Adam.
3550 years of Adam / 2.73758 years/big-day = 1296.764 big-days.
The seven years was divided into 1260 + 7 + 1290 days. We flip it around to be (1290 + 7) + 1260 days. We are comparing 1296.764 big-days with 1297 days.
The first half of the seven years is 1260 days, which is the time of the prophecy of the two witnesses. So it’s the good half of the seven years.
The second half of the seven years is 1297 days, which is the bad half. When the two witnesses are killed, the world goes down-hill from there.
The first half of the millennial week is the bad half. It’s represented by 1297 big-days. It begins with the fall of Adam.
During the first half, most of the world had very little revelation about God.
The second half of the millennial week is represented by the 1260 big-days. It’s the good half of the millennial week.
So from the time of the vision, there would be a “time, times, and half a time” (1260 big-days) until the fulfillment of all these things.