Daniel 8

Out from the kingdoms of the last days a king of fierce countenance, the anti-Christ,
will arise, and acting by the power of Satan, will bring transgression to the full.
Though he will for a time prosper in his hellish schemes, the sudden brightness of Christ’s coming will utterly destroy him.

1 In the third year of the reign of king Belshazzar a vision appeared unto me, even unto me Daniel, after that which appeared unto me at the first.

2 And I saw in a vision; and it came to pass, when I saw, that I was at Shushan in the palace, which is in the province of Elam; and I saw in a vision, and I was by the river of Ulai.

3 Then I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram which had two horns: and the two horns were high; but one was higher than the other, and the higher came up last.

4 I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward, and southward; so that no beasts might stand before him, neither was there any that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became great.

5 And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes.

6 And he came to the ram that had two horns, which I had seen standing before the river, and ran unto him in the fury of his power.

7 And I saw him come close unto the ram, and he was moved with choler against him, and smote the ram, and brake his two horns: and there was no power in the ram to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground, and stamped upon him: and there was none that could deliver the ram out of his hand.

8 Therefore the he goat waxed very great: and when he was strong, the great horn was broken; and for it came up four notable ones toward the four winds of heaven.

9 And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land.

10 And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them.

11 Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of his sanctuary was cast down.

12 And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practised, and prospered.

13 ¶ Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?

14 And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.

15 ¶ And it came to pass, when I, even I Daniel, had seen the vision, and sought for the meaning, then, behold, there stood before me as the appearance of a man.

16 And I heard a man’s voice between the banks of Ulai, which called, and said, Gabriel, make this man to understand the vision.

17 So he came near where I stood: and when he came, I was afraid, and fell upon my face: but he said unto me, Understand, O son of man: for at the time of the end shall be the vision.

18 Now as he was speaking with me, I was in a deep sleep on my face toward the ground: but he touched me, and set me upright.

19 And he said, Behold, I will make thee know what shall be in the last end of the indignation: for at the time appointed the end shall be.

20 The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia.

21 And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king.

22 Now that being broken, whereas four stood up for it, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not in his power.

23 And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up.

24 And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people.

25 And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand.

26 And the vision of the evening and the morning which was told is true: wherefore shut thou up the vision; for it shall be for many days.

27 And I Daniel fainted, and was sick certain days; afterward I rose up, and did the king’s business; and I was astonished at the vision, but none understood it.

Daniel 8:1-14 – God’s Sanctuary Dishonored.

   Shushan was the lily palace. There, by the river Ulai, the prophet beheld in vision the attack which would subsequently be made on the Medo-Persian kingdom by Alexander. The great horn which was broken is, of course, Alexander, and the four notable ones are his four generals, who after his death divided up his conquests. The little horn is referred by many to Antiochus, whose conflict with the Maccabees was one of the most significant in later Jewish history. Others refer it to Mohammed and his followers, who have reigned over the same regions. In this case the little horn would stand for the Eastern apostasy as distinguished from the Western, which is said to be represented by the little horn of the fourth beast, Daniel 7:8. The Books of the Maccabees can be studied to understand more clearly what is intended in Daniel 8:11-12. The explanation of these verses is also given in Daniel 8:24-25. Antiochus was obsessed with hatred against the spiritual worship of the Jews, and their refusal to admit his image into the Temple. He stayed their sacrifices, though they were restored for a season, to be finally suspended during the present age. The day for a year system, Daniel 8:14, may refer to the desolations of the Turkish or Ottoman empire, of which Antiochus was the representative. (Meyer)

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10 And it __________ great, even to the host of ____________; and it cast down some of the ________ and of the __________ to the ground, and ______________ upon them.

12 And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of __________________________, and it cast down the __________ to the ground; and it __________________, and __________________.

14 And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred ________; then shall the __________________ be cleansed.

Daniel 8:15-27 – God’s Deliverance Is Sure.

   It does not fall within our province to go into the various fulfillments which have been assigned to the predictions of this chapter – one to the time of the Maccabees, one to our own days, and one to that malign Satanic power which stands up perpetually against the Prince of princes. Let us dwell, rather, on the assertion that whatever sets itself against the kingship of Jesus Christ shall inevitably be broken. The Church of God is menaced today, as never before, by a vast multiplication of malign influences; but the Master’s promise holds good that the gates of Hades shall not prevail against her. They shall be broken without hand. This is our strong confidence with respect ot all our foes, and therefore we may possess our souls in patience. It is interesting that Daniel continued to do the king’s business, notwithstanding the abundance of the revelations given unto him. However much we may be caught up into the heaven of religious meditation and ecstasy, we must never forget or neglect the interests which are committed to our hands, whether of the home, the business, or the state.

Daniel 8:27—Afterward I rose up, and did the king’s business.

   Few men have been favored with such visions and revelations as fell to the lot of Daniel. The future, in so many different aspects, was repeatedly unfolded before him, and he saw much that elated and that depressed him. But through it all he steadily did the king’s business; so far as he knew, nothing was allowed to suffer or get behind. He would have counted it a great slur on his religious life if it could have been said that his visions and exercises interfered with his service to the king. Probably he did better work because his life was hid with God.
   In all this there is much of suggestion and warning. We too must have our secret mount of vision. We too must look across the valley for that blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. We too must have the vision of the evenings and mornings. But that is not enough. We must do our business in the world. Not star-gazing, but following the Star; not always standing at the window, but going to and fro in the King’s household, seeing that every one is at his post, and that the Royal household is properly fed; not always on the mount of transfiguration, but hastening whithersoever the uplifted hand of human need beckons us.
   At the same time, it will quicken us to do our business better if we have had a vision. Nothing makes so good a workman as thorough comprehension of his master’s purposes. And when Jesus calls us not servants only, but friends, we serve Him with deep appreciation of his thoughts and plans. Our service is more refined, diligent, and intelligent. Get your plan in the mount, and then build. (Meyer)