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Book of Daniel
 

  Introduction  
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3

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4

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5

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6

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7

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8

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9 | 10  
  11 | 12                                  
                                         
                                         
 

 Bible

 Bible Commentaries

  Daniel and Revelation

 
 
 

Commentary on the Bible

Book of Daniel

By Brian Pepper

 
 
  Chapter 12

 

DANIEL 12:1
AND AT THAT TIME SHALL MICHAEL STAND UP, THE GREAT PRINCE WHICH STANDETH FOR THE CHILDREN OF THY PEOPLE: AND THERE SHALL BE A TIME OF TROUBLE, SUCH AS NEVER WAS SINCE THERE WAS A NATION EVEN TO THAT SAME TIME: AND AT THAT TIME THY PEOPLE SHALL BE DELIVERED, EVERY ONE THAT SHALL BE FOUND WRITTEN IN THE BOOK.

And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people:

At that time or in that time.
This is the most crucial time of earth's history for Michael, by standing up has completed His work as the great High Priest. He now lays aside those priestly robes, the censer is cast down, and man's probation hour has closed.

Michael the great prince

 In Acts chapter 3:14,15 Peter declares "But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you; And killed the Prince of life (margin, Author) whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses."

Michael or Christ is "the great Prince" who stands for God's people

To stand up means to reign or to take the kingdom. Notice Daniel 11:3 "And a mighty king shall stand up, that shall rule with great dominion..."

The standing up of Michael will mean that God's people are soon to be delivered.

And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time.

Great Controversy p. 622 says, "It is often the case that trouble is greater in anticipation than in reality; but this is not true of the crisis before us. The most vivid presentation cannot reach the magnitude of the ordeal. In that time of trial, every soul must stand for himself before God..."

And at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.

Deliverance is a key word in the Book of Daniel. It is wonderful to know that God's people will be delivered.

Found written in the Book

When Michael stands up all the cases have been decided and the names of those who are unworthy have been blotted from the Book of Life. Only the names of those who are worthy are retained. Rev. 3:5 22: 11,12.

DANIEL 12:2
AND MANY OF THEM THAT SLEEP IN THE DUST OF THE EARTH SHALL AWAKE, SOME TO EVERLASTING LIFE, AND SOME TO SHAME AND EVERLASTING CONTEMPT.

And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake

Sleep in the dust of the earth

Over and over again death is likened to a sleep.  Job 7:21 says, "... for now shall I sleep in the dust..."

Psalm 13:3 says, "... lighten mine eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death."

Jeremiah 51:57 says, "... and they shall sleep a perpetual sleep, and not awake, saith the King, whose name is the LORD of hosts."

John 11:11 says, "... Our friend Lazarus sleepeth but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep.

John 11:14 says, "Then said Jesus unto them plainly Lazarus is dead."

1 Thessalonians 4:13 says, "But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope."

Shall awake

1 Thessalonians 4:16 says, "For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first."

Some to everlasting life

This is the first time in the Bible that this term is found, though it recurs frequently in the New Testament.

Some, that is those who have been faithful to their trust, those who have stayed true to God, will be raised to everlasting life. Yes, it is the dead in Christ that are raised to live forever.

And some to shame and everlasting contempt

Among those who are raised at this time, and the Scripture tells us that it is the dead in Christ that are raised, there are going to be some who are raised in shame and contempt. Daniel does not mention who they might be but John in Revelation gives us the answer to the question "who might they be?"

Revelation 1:7 says, "Behold, He cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see Him, and they also which pierced Him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of Him. Even so, Amen."

and they which pierced Him

Those who took part in Christ's unjust and cruel crucifixion. The weak Pilate, the wicked Caiaphas, the cruel Herod, those who pierced Christ when He hung on the cross, those who mocked and derided Him, those who spat on Him. Speaking to Caiaphas at the time of His trial Jesus said in Matthew 26:64, "Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said, nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven."

These wicked people will be raised with the Dead in Christ and they will see the Saviour in all His majesty and power, but like the rest of the wicked at this time they will be destroyed by the very brightness of the Lord's return.

DANIEL 12:3
AND THEY THAT BE WISE SHALL SHINE AS THE BRIGHTNESS OF THE FIRMAMENT; AND THEY THAT TURN MANY TO RIGHTEOUSNESS AS THE STARS FOREVER AND EVER.

And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament

The margin reads "teachers" in the place of "wise". So it should read thus "They that be teachers shall shine as the brightness of the firmament."

That is those who teach the truth and lead others to a knowledge of it. These teachers may not shine so brightly as far as the world is concerned, for the world does not always give applause to teachers of truth, but God says that they will be like the stars of heaven.

And they that turn many to righteousness as the stars forever and ever

Those who teach others the great truths of the Bible and turn the attention of men and women to the Plan of Salvation. Like the stars they will be ageless, their light will never grow dim but always be bright and clear.

DANIEL 12:4
BUT THOU, O DANIEL, SHUT UP THE WORDS, AND SEAL THE BOOK, EVEN TO THE TIME OF THE END: MANY SHALL RUN TO AND FRO, AND KNOWLEDGE SHALL BE INCREASED.

But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the Book, even to the time of the end

Not all of the Book of Daniel was to be closed, for much of it is simply a historical narrative.

The time of the end began in 1798 and certain of Daniel's prophecies would be closed until that time, simply because they would not be clearly understood.

Another thing, as many of these prophecies were particularly dealing with last day events, naturally they would be of great interest to the students interested in this aspect of Bible study.

Many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased

Many Bible students have used this text to show that in the Last Days there would be much faster methods of travel, and we have certainly seen just that for this century has seen marvellous developments in travel.

Knowledge shall be increased

There was been nothing like what we are seeing today in the increase of knowledge in every field of learning.

But this also refers to a great increase in Biblical knowledge. Today we have a far greater understanding of the prophecies and through the science of Archaeology a far better knowledge of the historical sections of the Holy Scriptures.

DANIEL 12:5
THEN I DANIEL LOOKED AND BEHOLD, THERE STOOD OTHER TWO, THE ONE ON THIS SIDE OF THE BANK OF THE RIVER, AND THE OTHER ON THAT SIDE OF THE BANK OF THE RIVER.

 Then I Daniel looked and behold, there stood other two

Two additional angels appear to Daniel besides Gabriel who has narrated the prophecy to Daniel.

The one on this side of the bank of the river, and the other on that side of the bank of the river.

The river is Hiddekel or the Tigris.

DANIEL 12:6
AND ONE SAID TO THE MAN CLOTHED IN LINEN, WHICH WAS UPON THE WATERS OF THE RIVER, HOW LONG SHALL IT BE TO THE TIME OF THESE WONDERS?

And one said to the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river

This heavenly Being clothed in white is Christ or Michael who appeared to Daniel in chapter 10. It is rather interesting to notice that while the two angels stood on the bank of the river, this heavenly Being stands on the waters.

How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?

After the long and rather detailed description of future events found in chapter 11, Daniel would be naturally anxious to know how long these "wonders" would continue.

The events of the 2300 day prophecy had given him quite a lot of anxiety, but the events of chapter 11 far more so. It is fairly certain that Daniel did not fully understand how the events he had seen were related to the future, especially as a portion of the prophecy was sealed and could only be understood at the "time of the end."

DANIEL 12:7
AND I HEARD A MAN CLOTHED IN LINEN, WHICH WAS UPON THE WATERS OF THE RIVER, WHEN HE HELD UP HIS RIGHT HAND AND HIS LEFT HAND UNTO HEAVEN, AND SWARE BY HIM THAT LIVETH FOREVER THAT IT SHALL BE FOR A TIME, TIMES, AND HALF; AND HE SHALL HAVE ACCOMPLISHED TO SCATTER THE POWER OF THE HOLY PEOPLE, ALL THESE THINGS SHALL BE FINISHED.

And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river

The heavenly Being standing on the water becomes the spokesman. This is a special message for Daniel and for God's people right down to the end of time.

When he held up his right hand and his left and unto heaven

By the act of lifting up hand before making a statement is often mentioned in the Scriptures as an appeal to Heaven and is usually associated with making an oath.

And sware by Him that liveth forever that it shall be for a time, times, and half

No greater oath could be sworn than this. Hebrews 6:13 says, "For when God made promise to Abraham, because He could swear by no greater, He sware by Himself."

For a time, times, and half

This period is the same 1260 years of Papal supremacy and opposition of God's people which is repeatedly mentioned in Daniel and Revelation.

This period seems to be the most important prophetic period given in the Scriptures, though the period of 2300 days of chapter 8:14 covers a much longer period of time, beginning earlier and ending later. However the period of 1260 years represent a period of long drawn out agony for the true church of God.

Seeing that this time period is always associated with Rome and her supremacy, then it indicates that chapter 11 ends with Rome and not Turkey, for this period is very closely connected with Rome.

And when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people

In the text of Daniel we have the figure of breaking the hand in pieces, or of shattering the hand.

In the old days of personal conflict, to shatter the hand of an adversary would be to reduce him to utter helplessness.

The meaning would be that when the Roman power and all other enemies of God's people have had their complete way in persecuting them to the limit, then it will be time for God to intervene and finish the history of mankind.

All these things shall be finished

Not until Michael stands up and takes His kingdom can the church hope for any relief from the fearful onslaughts of devils and wicked men.

If we go back to the main statements of this verse, as an answer to the question of "How long"" (Daniel 8:13), we see that the answer really consists of two parts: a specified period of 1260 years with a definite beginning and end, and a further period of indefinite or undefined length, though of similar character, when the people of God must still endure the persecution of their foes.

The definitely measured period ended in 1798. Since then we have had a period of indefinite length though from the signs of the times it must be coming to the end.

DANIEL 12:8
AND I HEARD, BUT I UNDERSTOOD NOT: THEN SAID I, O MY LORD, WHAT SHALL BE THE END OF THESE THINGS?

In the introductory verse of this vision (10:1) Daniel states that he "had understanding of the vision."

In the course of the vision the prophet was assured by the angel that he had come to make him "understand" (10:14).

The revelation that followed was given in literal language.

Now after the time element of 1260 years had been introduced in answer to the question "how long?" Daniel confessed, "I understood not."

The part of the vision he did not seem to understand was the time period. Seeing he had been praying for the speedy restoration of the Temple he seemed unable to fit the time period into his conception of an early deliverance for his people.

DANIEL 12:9
AND HE SAID, GO THY WAY, DANIEL: FOR THE WORDS ARE CLOSED UP AND SEALED TILL THE TIME OF THE END.

And he said, Go thy way

Though Daniel was greatly beloved of heaven he was not permitted to know the full import of the revelations he had recorded.

The complete significance would be appreciated only by those who would see the historical fulfilment of these prophecies.

For the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end

The time of the end was the time when the wise would understand. At the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th century a new interest in the prophecies of Daniel and the Revelation was seen in many countries. The study of these prophecies led to a widespread belief that the second advent of Christ was near.

Joseph Wolff in the Middle East, Manuel Lacunza in South America and William Miller in the United States, together with a host of other students in various places all declared that the Lord's return was imminent.

DANIEL 12:10
MANY SHALL BE PURIFIED, AND MADE WHITE, AND TRIED; BUT THE WICKED SHALL DO WICKEDLY: AND NONE OF THE WICKED SHALL UNDERSTAND; BUT THE WISE SHALL UNDERSTAND.

Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried

It is not suggesting that anyone can make himself pure and holy but rather that God does this through the trials He allows His people to pass through.

But the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand

The wicked have the opportunity to benefit by these prophecies but they do not. Instead they are determined to disbelieve. They twist the prophecies into meaningless nonsense, so much so that many say they are dreams of drug addicts.

But the wise shall understand

 Those who set their minds to understand these wonderful prophecies with the blessing of God on them will understand. John 7:17 says, "If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself."

DANIEL 12:11
AND FROM THE TIME THAT THE DAILY SACRIFICE SHALL BE TAKEN AWAY, AND THE ABONIMATION THAT MAKETH DESOLATE SET UP, THERE SHALL BE A THOUSAND TWO HUNDRED AND NINETY DAYS.

And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up

The taking away was done with the intention of setting up the abomination. We noticed in chapter 11:31 the mediatorial work of Christ has been substituted by the abominable teachings of Rome.

There shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days

This time period is mentioned in close connection with the "time, times, and an half" or 1260 days, and the events that occur at the end of these periods must be closely related. The extra number of years add extra events.

We are not told to what event these 1290 days reach. But seeing their beginning prepares the way for the setting up of the Papacy. The end of this period in all probability brings us to 1798. If we count back from this date we have the year 508 AD. This period must be given to show us the date of the taking away of the daily, and it is the only one that does this. It was 508 that the Bishop of Rome entered into a political agreement with Clovis, king of the Franks. Clovis was converted to the Catholic faith. Clovis launched a religious war against the Visigoths who were defeated which was a very important stage in the establishment of the Catholic church in the West.

It was in AD 508 the united resistance was terminated to the development of the Catholic church in the West. The question of supremacy between Frank and Goth, between Catholic and Arian religions were settled in favour of the Catholics.

DANIEL 12:12
BLESSED IS HE THAT WAITETH, AND COMETH TO THE THOUSAND THREE HUNDRED AND FIVE AND THIRTY DAYS.

Closely connected with the 1290 days is this period of 1335 days since the 1290 days reached down to 1798.

We have just noticed that the 1290 days began in 508 AD. If the 1335 days begin  at the same date then they will reach down to 1843.

What is promised at the end of the 1335 days is a blessing to those who wait and come to that time. And what happened at that time? About the year 1843, this was the time of what is known as the great Advent awakening. True it was just before the great disappointment but it was a religious revival the like of which has not been seen since and possibly will not be until the latter Rain or second Pentecost.

DANIEL 12:13
BUT GO THOU THY WAY TILL THE END BE: FOR THOU SHALT REST, AND STAND IN THY LOT AT THE END OF THE DAYS.

For thou shalt rest

Like all the other people of God , no matter how faithful, he must be content to rest in the grave until the Life-giver shall appear to call him forth to everlasting life.

And stand in thy lot at the end of the days

Daniel was to rest in the grave until the appointed time to come forth.

 

 

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