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This Section - Chapter 11

ch. 11:1-35    ch. 11:36-45

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The Kings Of The South And The North (ch. 11:1-5)

Iíve mentioned before how liberal scholars late date the Book of Daniel because of what it says about history.  These liberals say that the accounts of this book had to have been written after the fact.  Still, Daniel received these prophetic visions from God long before they happened.  This chapter gives more and clearer detail of history that had not yet taken place when Daniel lived.  I will not go into the details of this history.  It is very exhaustive.  Youíll need to go elsewhere to find the historic facts of this chapter.  They can be found in non-biblical history.    


When looking at this chapter we need to understand that from verses 1 through 36 concerns precise historical events that are factually based and can be found in non-biblical history books. All that is written in the first 36 verses is pure history.  The history lesson changes around verse 36 to the end of the chapter.  Prophetic Futurists believe this part of the chapter deals with end time prophecy. The middle part of this chapter, from around verses 21 to 36 speaks of a combination of Antiochus Epiphame and the anti-Christ.  In these middle verses we see a transition between the two men.  Some things apply to both.  Some apply only to Antiochus or the anti-Christ.  It is clear that some of these things did not take place with Antiochus, therefore, have to be set in a future setting.    


In verses 1 through 4 we see that there will be three more kings in the Medo-Persian Empire that will give way to another king, or kingdom, which is Alexander the Great as weíve already discussed.  We need to note that the Hebrew word translated as "king" can also be translated as "kingdom".  Only the context will tell you how to translate the word.  After Alexander the Great dies Greece will be divided up into four separate identities as this vision states.  This is a matter of world history and can be seen in any history book on this era. 


From verses 5 through 21 we see the history lesson of the kings of Mede and Persia, up to Alexander and the separation of Greece  into four regional kingdoms.  Much of this section deals with the constant fighting between two of these four regions. Thatís the north and the south. 


From verses 21 to 36 we begin to see some things that cannot be found in history, and beyond verse 36 all cannot be found in history.  Thus prophetic Futurist sees verses 21 to 36 as a transition into the last part of this chapter that describes the end of our present age. 


As we noted before, Antiochus Epiphame is a type, is prophetically symbolic of the anti-Christ that will appear at the end of this age.


In verses 27 and 29 we see again the words "appointed time". God has a time table of events that will be accomplished both in the heavenly realm and here on earth.  He's got it all predetermined.  He will do certain things at certain times, yet beyond the specific things He will do, these verses suggest that His time table includes the rise and fall of nations.  As we learned earlier in Daniel, God will put in power those He wants and remove from power those He wants removed.


Verses 30 and 31 speak of "the desolation that causes abomination".  Once again, this is when Antiochus Epiphame takes over the Jewish temple, offers a pig as a sacrifice in the temple, and sets up an idol in the Holy of Hollies. Jesus refers to this event as if it had not happened.  Thus, Jesus clues us in on how we should understand this vision.  Though it had some historical significance, Jesus says that this will happen again at the end of the age.   See (Matthew 24:15.


Verse 33 says that "those who are wise will instruct many".  Jesus tells us, and the vision tells Daniel, that we are to be wise and understand these things and those who do understand should and will teach others. Understanding prophetic history takes lots of study and lots of wisdom, something many have no interest in.  I do believe that God is calling, and will call as time goes on, some to the ministry of end times understanding.  We should pay close attention to these teachers. 


The verse goes on to say that some of these wise people will be killed.  I believe this will take place in the Great Tribulation as seen in Revelation 6.  Then, in the next verse we see that some of these wise men will actually stumble.  It doesnít say they will fall away, only stumble so they can be refined.  They will be made pure and spotless "until the time of the end".  Pure and spotless are New Testaments words and so you can see, along with the words "until the end" that this verse speaks of the end of the New Testament age.  This speaks to the persecution of the saints that I believe takes place in the last days, both just prior to the Great Tribulation and during the time of tribulation.  Many saints are killed for their faith in the Great Tribulation.  You can see these saints in Revelation 6.  They cry out to God, asking Him to avenge their blood.


Once again, in verse 35 we see that the end has an "appointed time".  How clear can it be?  God has all things planned out.


The King Who Exalts Himself (ch. 11:36-45)

Even the writers of the NIV and other translations feel the rest of this chapter should be distinguished from the preceding verses because of what is written.  For this reason they separate this section from the previous verses.  


In verse 36 we see this king who prophetic Futurists say is the anti-Christ.  He sets himself up as being more important than the God of gods.  He does what he pleases and will succeed at doing what he pleases "until the time of wrath has been completed, for what has been determined must take place".  Again, we see God has a time table of events.   

The time of wrath spoken of here is clearly the time of Godís wrath as seen in the book of Revelation.  It's what has been called the Great Tribulation where God brings Israel to her knees in judgment in order for her to come back to Him in genuine repentance.  During time of world wide tribulation, the nations of the world will also be judged for their wickedness, and especially for their treatment of Israel.  This time of judgment is a demonstration of God's wrath, and it will be one very horrible time to live through. 


We see the word "determined" here.  This is not predestination.  The things that are determined are things that God wants to do and they are in reference to Godís wrath as seen in the phrase just before this phrase.


In verse 37 the words "for the one desired by women" is most likely a Jewish idiomatic phrase that speaks of the Messiah.  The desire of Jewish women was to be the mother of the Messiah.  The anti-Christ does not give any regard to the Messiah.  Neither does he give any regard to the ďgods of his fathers" which seems to be another idiom.  Gentiles had many gods.  Jews had one God.  The phrase "gods of his fathers" is often used in reference to Gentile gods.  


Verse 38 says that his god will be a "god of fortresses".  This could easily mean that his god will be a god of his own military might and power.  This verse also says that this god was not known by his fathers.  At the moment, I'm not really sure what this means.       


Some suggest that the word "god" in this verse should be translated as "goddess" because in the Hebrew it is a feminine noun.  Some people think the anti-Christ is Jewish.  I really don't know at this point.  If he is Jewish, then if you follow this line of reasoning, the Jewish anti-Christ will worship a pagan god that the Jewish fathers didnít worship.  This might be the devil, or at least some demonic force.  There is a bit of a problem with this thinking and that is we know in times past that Israelis did worship pagan gods. 


While on this topic of the ethnicity of the antichrist, many have speculated over his background.  Some say he is Jewish.  In recent years some are convinced he is Islamic.  In the past many thought he would be the pope of the Catholic Church.  I'm unsure at this point concerning this matter.     


In verse 39 this king will make those who help him win the world to be rulers over nations.  This might be a reference to the ten kings the anti-Christ works with as seen in the book of Revelation.


In verse 40 we see the words "at the time of the end".  This tells us with certainty that the following verses speak to the end of this age. 


In the next phrases we see two kingdoms
mentioned.  One kingdom is from the north while the other is from the south.  Many understand that so far in this chapter the kingdom of the south is what is known as Egypt today, while the kingdom of the north has been seen as what we now call Syria.  Do these kingdoms mean the same nations today?  Thereís much controversy here.  It appears that these two kingdoms oppose the anti-Christ.  We know from an earlier chapter in Daniel that the anti-Christ puts down three other kings on his rise to pewer and authority. Maybe these two kings are two of these kings. 


We see that Edom, Moab and Amman, do not fall to the anti-Christ.  Not all people come under his control.  He does have opposition.  Some say that the geographical area represented by these nations is where Israel flees when it leaves Jerusalem for a safe place during the Great Tribulation.  They say this because they think these regions are sympathetic to Israel.   

Another point to consider concerns the fact that Moses gave two and a half tribes much of what is now known as Jordan, which is Moab, Ammon, and Edom.  Amos 9:12 states that Israel will possess Edom.  This might be the case because Moses gave this land to the two and a half tribes of Israel.  This land belonged to Israel back in Moses' day, and it may belong to Israel in the days ahead.  For this reason, this might be why the anti-Christ has no control over this region.  One thing to note today is that srael has a peace treaty with Jordan, or, with Ammon, Moab, and Edom, as it was known back then.  This peace treaty might well come into play in the events of the end of this age.  Also note that Israel has had a peace treaty with  Egypt, but now, in recent times might be in jeopardy.    


A little confusion sets in at this point because we see the King of the North.  All along he has been the anti-Christ, but now the King of the North canít be the anti-Christ since the King of the North opposes the anti-Christ.  So there are many interpretations over this one. 


It appears to me that the final battle as seen at the end of this chapter is associated with the Battle of Armageddon that takes place because of opposition to this anti-Christís power.  The final fight just well take place because the anti-Christ is getting scared that he is losing his control, so he takes those he has on his side and fights against his supreme opposer and thatís God Himself.


The Battle of Armageddon takes place in the Middle East but it originates in the spiritual realm.  It's a battle between God and satan.


There are lots of things in this chapter that are difficult to figure out.  I believe as we get closer to the time in which these things speak to, we'll have a better understanding of what is being said, not only in Daniel 11, but throughout the whole book of Daniel.   


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