A Fresh Look at Daniel - Part 10

Posted in: 2008
By Tom L. Ballinger
Aug 4, 2008 - 9:42:28 AM


Part X

The Eleventh Chapter of Daniel is a continuation of Chapter Ten. Gabriel is still speaking to Daniel and says, “Also I in the first year of Darius the Mede, even I, stood to confirm and to strengthen him.” (Dan. 11:1).

This verse is parenthetical, telling Daniel what he, Gabriel, had been doing during the two previous years. This verse is historical. Gabriel is telling, in plainer words, that for two years, he had been at his station “in the spirit realm,” defending and protecting Darius (i.e Cyrus) from the onslaughts of the prince of Persia (angelic being). He tried to disengage himself from the forces of darkness for twenty-one days (Dan. 10:13) in order to come to Daniel and give him understanding about what will happen in the “latter days” to the children of Israel (Dan.10:14).

With the courageous help from Michael, the Archangel, Gabriel was able to come to Daniel and tell him, “And now will I shew thee the truth. Behold, there shall stand up [in the latter days] yet three kings in Persia; and the fourth shall be far richer than they all: and by his strength through his riches he shall stir up all against the realm of Grecia (Greece). And a mighty king shall stand up, that shall rule with great dominion, and do according to his will. And when he shall stand up, his kingdom shall be broken, and shall be divided toward the four winds of heaven; and not to his posterity, nor according to his dominion which he ruled: for his kingdom shall be plucked up, even for others beside those.” (Dan 11:2-4).

Verses Three through Four tell of a “mighty king” who rules with great power, but his empire is to be broken up and parceled out toward the four winds; none of which goes to his descendants.

Then, we read, “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. 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.” (Dan 11:5-6. NIV)

It would be foolish to speculate who this woman will be, or what nation she comes from. But, in the “latter days” (the Kingdom of God), near the consummation, the wise will understand the events and the personalities in the unfolding episode taking place. They will, also, know the outcome.

So, here, we have mention of the king of the South (V. 5) who is not identified; but one of his commanders becomes powerful enough to rule his own kingdom. Then, notice, “after some years,” they become allies. This is significant as far as understanding an extended time-line during the Kingdom of God (the latter days).

In the last study, Daniel 10, it was pointed out that after the “Appearing of Christ” (2 Tim. 4:1) and the commencement of the Kingdom of God, we calculated that at least 690 years would elapse before the rise of the Antichrist. However, we pointed out that there were still more years to come before the time of the Great Tribulation for Israel.

From Verse 6 through Verse 20, there are a number of future events set forth. These events are connected with war and aggression among unidentified nations. We will not even go through those verses because they pertain to nations in the distant future. When Daniel stands up in the resurrection during the Kingdom of God, and when he stands in his lot at the “end of the days” (Dan. 12:13), he will understand what’s going on, as well as, “the wise shall understand” (Dan. 12:10).

In Verses 6 through Verse 20, there are conflicts, aggressions, and wars among nations in the vicinity of Israel and her Land of Promise. Daniel and the wise who have been raised from the dead will understand, then. I suggest we cannot know the exact details as some of the Christian commentators and dooms-day preachers, of today, think they do.

Most of the hostilities and wars in Daniel Eleven involve the kings of the South and the kings of the North, contending against each other and surrounding nations – Israel, however, is to be the final focal point, but, before then, many years elapse.

Notice, the mention of years in the following verses:

Dan 11:6: “And in the end of years they shall join themselves together;”
Dan 11:8: “and he shall continue more years than the king of the north.”
Dan 11:13: “and shall certainly come after certain years with a great army and with much riches.”
Dan. 11:20: “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.

It is suggested that Verses 6-20 be read to get the sense of time involved. All of this will take place before the tribulation period. From Verse 6 through Verse 20, a number of years are involved. How many? We are not informed. But, whatever they are, add them to the 690 years which will have already transpired.[ i ]

The disciples asked the Lord Jesus concerning the consummation of the future age of the Kingdom and the sign of His coming (Parousia) in Matthew 24:3, as it has been, previously, pointed out. Before Christ answers their specific question, He briefs them about the “beginning of sorrows” which will precede the tribulation; “And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars [of Daniel 11]: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows” (Matt 24:4-8). [ ii ]

So, in all probability, we’re looking at more than six-hundred-plus years by the time “a vile person [stands up], to whom they will not give honour of the kingdom: but he shall come in (invade) peaceably, and obtain the kingdom with flatteries (i.e.,intrigue)” (V. 21).

This vile person is not another successional king of the North, but a totally different and unique personage. He turns out to be the Antichrist. He seems to be very unstable as the rest of Chapter 11 is read. He makes a covenant which turns out to be with Israel. In Verse 22, we read, “And with the arms of a flood shall they be overflown from before him, and shall be broken; yea, also the prince of the covenant.” Is the prince of the covenant a Jew? Or, an angelic being? I cannot tell.

The details get so complicated in the rest of the chapter, I’ll not make many comments because they would be inadequate, and because the purpose of these studies is to take a fresh look at Daniel’s visions and their divine interpretations. In this chapter, Gabriel is telling Daniel what will befall his people in the “latter days.” As we stated earlier, the kings, nations, and participants will be recognized in the “latter days” - not before.

We will set forth Daniel 11:25-45 as it appears in the NIV:

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. 26 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. 27 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.

28 “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.

29 "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. 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. [ iii ] 32 With flattery he will corrupt those who have violated the covenant, but the people who know their God will firmly resist him.

33 "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.

36 "The king will do as he pleases. He will exalt and magnify himself above every god and will say unheard-of things against the God of gods. He will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, for what has been determined must take place. 37 He will show no regard for the gods of his fathers or for the one desired by women [ iv ], nor will he regard any god, but will exalt himself above them all. 38 Instead of them, he will honor a god of fortresses; a god unknown to his fathers he will honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. 39 He will attack the mightiest fortresses with the help of a foreign god and will greatly honor those who acknowledge him. He will make them rulers over many people and will distribute the land at a price.

40 "At the time of the end [ v ] the king of the South will engage him in battle, and the king of the North will storm out against him with chariots and cavalry and a great fleet of ships. He will invade many countries and sweep through them like a flood. 41 He will also invade the Beautiful Land [ vi ]. Many countries will fall, but Edom, Moab and the leaders of Ammon will be delivered from his hand. 42 He will extend his power over many countries; Egypt will not escape [ vii ]. 43 He will gain control of the treasures of gold and silver and all the riches of Egypt, with the Libyans and Nubians in submission. 44 But reports from the east and the north will alarm him, and he will set out in a great rage to destroy and annihilate many. 45 He will pitch his royal tents between the seas at the beautiful holy mountain. Yet he will come to his end, and no one will help him.”

This Satan-possessed tyrant is smitten by Jesus Christ Himself. This “willful king” comes to his end in Judea over six-hundred years after the Kingdom of God begins.

There is little more to be said about this God-given interpretation of Daniel’s visions. We can only read it, and marvel at it, and let it stand as is. The activities of the Antichrist are given here, in some detail, but they should be coordinated with other passages which speak of him.

Those who make up the Body over which Christ Jesus is the Head will be in His service throughout the duration of this epic as it plays out on the world scene.


[ i ] If the Kingdom were to come tomorrow, we would be looking at 600 plus years, probably 700 years, before the return of Christ at His 2nd Advent. Or said another way, the hope of the Ecclesia over which Christ Jesus is the Head will take place perhaps 700 years before the Lord descends from heaven with a shout (1 Thess. 4:16). All of those who love his “appearing” (2 Tim. 4:8) will experience the realization of their hope 700 years prior to the “rapture,” or the Second Coming.

[ ii ] For the disciples, who asked the question of the Lord in Matthew Twenty-Four, to hear of wars and etc., they will have to be raised from the dead and be alive during this period in the Kingdom of God.

[ iii ] The abomination of desolation is the erection of symbols of the Asherah (monuments of the human phallus) throughout the sanctuary, thereby, desecrating it. This, and the taking away of the daily sacrifice, happens in the middle of the last week of Daniel’s Seventy Weeks (see 8:11-12, 9:27, and 12:11). From this point, forward, the king of the North (Antichrist) is energized by Satan.

[ iv ] “For the one desired by women;” according to the context, the god that women desire is disregarded by the Antichrist.

[ v ] “At the time of the end,” that is, near the close of the last seven years.

[ vi ] “Beautiful Land,” see 8:9; “the pleasant land” of the KJV is Daniel’s term for the Holy Land of Israel.

[ vii ] “He will extend his power over many countries;” compare this with “he will invade many countries” (V. 40). It doesn’t say he will invade and overthrow all nations. Modern-day Armageddonites scare “the devil out” of uninformed Christians who are proclaiming the Great Tribulation is a world-wide catastrophe, and all of mankind will be subject to the “mark of the beast.” The Great Tribulation will truly be awesome; nothing like it has happened since, the beginning of the world, nor ever shall be (Matt. 24:21). But, it is not world-wide in its scope. Yes, it will have repercussions around the world, but it is centered in and around the nations in what we call the “near east.”

Tom L. Ballinger