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Mystery of Lawlessness – Part Seven

Mystery of Lawlessness – Part Seven

“an he goat came from the west” –Daniel is given a vision

In part five of this series we reviewed Daniels interpretation of Nebuchadnezzars dream.  In part six we reflected on Daniels dream and its interpretation.  In part seven, we will focus on a vision Daniel received from God which also includes an interpretation provided by one of God’s messengers.  I had planned to move on to more current events after covering these scriptures but God has impressed upon me the need to also address another revelations and visions given to Daniel in the  9th, 10th and 11th chapters of the book bearing his name.  We will cover that next week but if you want to get a head start you can read Daniel chapters 9.  It will be an eye opening discovery for many and will bring some key events of world history into better focus.

In the 8th chapter we see Daniel is given a vision during the 3rd year of King Belshazzar’s reign.  Keep in mind Daniel received this vision prior to the Medio/Persian conquest of the Babylonian empire sometime between 539BC and 586BC.  Identical to Daniels previous dream, this vision will accurately describe world events which will occur more than 2,700 years into the future from the time it was written.  The first 14 verses describe Daniel’s vision and the last 14 verses provide God’s explanation of the vision to Daniel.  Consequently, we will focus and comment on the the interpretation and explain the world events that came to pass long afterDaniel’s death.

Daniel 8

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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 the 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.

Now for the interpretation:

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.

The voice Daniel heard commands Gabriel to interpret the vision.  Gabriel is one of the archangels whose role in scripture (He appears 4 times in the bible) appears to include that of a heralder of God’s truth to mankind.  I believe the voice that Daniel heard was that of Jesus commanding Gabriel to reveal to Daniel a glimpse into the future of world empires.

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.

Gabriel explains that the vision includes details “of the end” times.

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.

Two important things to note here, Gabriel is about explain the events that will occur up to, and including the “end of the indignation” (which refers to man’s history of rebellion against God).  The second point is that Gabriel confirms that GOD has appointed when “the end shall be” and is therefore in control of the outcome of human history.

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

As in Daniels and Nebuchadnezzars previous dreams, we see the rise of the Medio/Persian empire symbolized by the two horns.

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

Also as prophesied in previous dreams and visions, we see the rise of the Greek empire led by Alexander the Great depicted as the great horn that is between the eyes of the RAM.  In the following verses we see how accurately Daniel’s vision describes future details about the fall of the Greek empire.

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.

Here we see that when the great horn was broken (death of Alexander), four smaller horns arose out of Alexanders kingdom but none were as powerful as he was.  We see in Greek history that rather than pass his kingdom down to his heirs, Alexander said “let it go to the strong”.  He consequently passed rule of  his kingdom down to his four generals who divided the empire and ruled it accordingly.  History tells us these generals were Selucid, Lysemechus, Cassander and Ptolemy and soon began fighting each other for greater control of Alexanders empire. 

Its important to note that Selucid ruled over the area which now includes Syria and Ptolemy ruled over the area of Egypt.  We will see in Part 9 of this series that these two kingdoms are referred to in Daniel Chapter 11 as the “king of the north (Selucid – Syria) and the King of the South (Ptolemy – Egypt) fought numerous battles that are well documented in secular human history.

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.

This verse speaks of “in the latter time” when rebellious mankind has reached the fullness of his evil potential, another King will rise up.  He will be overpowering and “understand dark sentences” meaning he will be in league with the “Mystery of Lawlessness” which is Satan.

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.

This King’s power will come from satan who is the force behind the Mystery of Lawlessness (satan) will help him ascend in power and attack God’s Holy people (the Jews)

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.

This verse contains so much information, we could spend an entire lesson just on this.  Verse 25 says “he shall cause craft to prosper” which means he will cause DECEIPT to prosper or increase.  Who was the father of all lies? SATAN!  What did Jesus warn his disciples to beware of in the end times?  DO NOT BE DECIEVED!  The end times will be filled with all manner of lies and decieption.

“He shall magnify himself in his heart”  Who said, I will set my throne above the heavens and be like God? SATAN!

“By peace shall destroy many”  How do you destroy through peace?  BY DECEIPT!  You promise peace then destroy through deception.  This will be the trademark of this final King of the last world empire.  He will be a LIAR, He will be PROUD, ARROGANT, SELF PROMOTING and will say or do whatever it takes to achieve his objective.  His goal will be nothing less than total domination and control of the earth.

“He will stand up against the Prince of Princes”  Who is the Prince of Princes?  JESUS!  This final King (who I believe is the coming anti-christ who will be indwelled by none other than satan himself,) will try to defeat his creator JESUS….what arrogance!

“He shall be broken without hand” As we have seen in previous lessons, this term refers to the fact that the stone (Jesus) that was cut without hand (meaning not descended from Adam) will destroy this final King.  Remember in the Garden of Eden when God first told man that one day the seed of Eve (Jesus) would destroy the seed of the serpent (antichrist)?  Only an Omnipotent, Omnipresent, Omniscient GOD could make that prophecy and then make it come true!

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.

“evening and morning”  The Jewish day is patterned after God’s creation days in Genesis.  God refers to each day beginning with evening and ending with morning.   In this verse, this phrase can be used to imply “the vision of the DAY” that is coming is true.  The use of the term DAY in the bible can refer to a 24 hour period, an event (Day of the Lord) or a specific period or time frame (last days).  This verse indicates Daniels vision refers to a future day (period of time) which will not occur “for many days” meaning in Daniel’s distant future.

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.

“But none understood it”  Daniel was astonished by it because God explained to him what it meant.  Howver, the meaning of Daniels dream wasn’t clear to those living at the time.  For those of us today who have the benefit of 20-20 hindsight, we can look backwards in time to see how all of these events have unfolded just as God said.  Consequently we, are now better able to look forward with confidence and see how Daniels vision will be fulfilled according to every facet of God’s plan for the ages.

May God open your eyes to the power, glory and majesty of HIS presence as you search HIS HOLY WORD.


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