Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep
those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand. Revelation 1:3


Segment 7 – Daniel 10:1 – 11:35
Israel’s Prophetic Destiny

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So when you see standing in the holy place “the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel – let the [Gentile] reader [also] understand – then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let no one on the roof of his house go down to take anything out of the house. Let no one in the field go back to get his cloak. How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! Pray that your flight will not take place in the winter or on the Sabbath.”

-          Matthew 24:15-20, insertions mine



About 534 B.C., God gave Daniel a compelling vision that came in two installments. The first installment contained scenes from a protracted series of wars and the second consisted of another visit with the angel, Gabriel. Gabriel was sent to Daniel, who was nearing eighty years of age, to explain certain things about the wars that he saw in the first installment. Daniel received these installments about three weeks apart. When Daniel put the vision in written form, he, like all other Bible writers, did not divide his report into chapters and verses that are found in our Bibles today. This point is made because Daniel 10 through 12 should be understood as one vision, even though it covers three chapters. A similar situation occurred in Daniel 8 and 9. Daniel 8 contains a ram, goat and horn power. Later, Gabriel was sent to Daniel with more information about Daniel 8. (Daniel 9:21) 

Today, few religious leaders speak about the last chapters of Daniel. This is unfortunate because this particular vision contains valuable information for the final generation. God does not give visions to His prophets without revealing important information. As we examine this vision, keep four issues in mind:

1.  Two Groups of Beneficiaries


God gave this vision to Daniel to benefit two groups of people who would live in the future. The first group lived about 600 years after this vision was given. This group consisted of Christians who lived in Jerusalem at the time of its destruction in A.D. 70. The second group of people for which this vision was given is those Christians who love on Earth during the Great Tribulation. This vision benefits both groups because they will share a common experience. Early Christians experienced the destruction of Jerusalem, and the Great Tribulation Christians will experience the destruction of Earth. Because there are distinct parallels in these two events, God gave one vision for the benefit of two groups of people. This is not unusual, because Jesus, in Matthew 24 and elsewhere in the Bible, compared the destruction of Jerusalem with the end of the world. For example, Jesus told His disciples,  “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people….

They will put you out of the synagogue; in fact, a time is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is offering a service to God. They will do such things because they have not known the Father or me.” (Matthew 24:9-11, John 16:2,3) History reveals that many of the early Christians, like Stephen, were martyrs for their faith. (Acts 6 and 7) The Jews, including Saul of Tarsus, thought they were doing God a service by killing Christians! (See Deuteronomy 13 and 1 Timothy 1:13.) People living during the Great tribulation will see similar parallels. Soon, God’s people will be persecuted, even martyred for their faith, and amazingly, people who persecute and martyr God’s people will think they are doing God a service! (Revelation 6:9-11; 13:1-10; 14:12.13; 16:4-7)


Other parallels in Matthew 24 merit our attention. For example, Jesus said, “As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.” (Matthew 24:37-39) Jesus compared the disbelief and ignorance of the people who lived before the flood with the people who will be living at the end of time. Of course, ignorance is not limited to people living in Noah’s day nor at the end of the world. This is why Jesus warned His listeners to anticipate Jerusalem’s destruction. “’Do you see all these things [the temple complex]?’ he asked. ‘I tell you the truth, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down… So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel – let the [Gentile] reader [also] understand – then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains.’” (Matthew 24:2,15,16; Luke 21:22, insertions mine.) Jesus quoted Daniel 11:31, because the vision in Daniel 10-12 lays out a historical sequence of events that includes the destruction of Jerusalem! Not only did early Christians benefit from Jesus’ remarks, but the final generation will also benefit from this amazing vision. Remember, God gave this vision to Daniel about 540 B.C., and it was meant to benefit two groups of people who would be separated by almost 2,000 years!

2.  God’s Foreknowledge

The vision of Daniel 10-12, like that of Daniel 8-9, predicted Israel’s failure long before the seventy weeks began. One of God’s most amazing qualities is His ability to treat His children according to the principles of love, even though He knows our choices before we make them. Think this through. If you knew your child would flunk out of college, would you spend $50,000 on his or her college education anyway? If you knew your upcoming marriage was going to end in bitter divorce, would you still get married? God is all knowing (omniscient). He knows everything in the past, present and future. Even more, He is omnipotent, which means He has power to manipulate everyone and everything in the universe to His satisfaction. However, God does not use His foreknowledge or His omnipotence to manipulate His creatures for His benefit. If He manipulated us according to His desires, He would not be a God of love; instead, He would be a self-serving God. The only way God’s creatures can live at peace with God is through trust. We have to believe that He will not violate the principle of love even though we cannot understand His ways at times. God does not ask us to trust Him with these incredible powers without giving us good reason to trust Him. Calvary proves the Father and the Son are worthy of complete trust.


Here is a profound point. God uses His mighty powers (omnipotence, omniscience and omnipresence) to insure the principle of love will be exalted throughout the universe. God does not use His incredible powers to keep Himself on the throne! The principle of love is essential for eternal happiness (there is no alternative). The humiliation and death of Jesus assures every created being that the principle of love will forever be the basis of God’s government. In other words, if God could have resolved the sin problem without Jesus’ death, He would have done so. But, “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son….” This is why John wrote, “God is love.” (1 John 4:8) What a marvelous God!


God deals with us according to His great love, even though He knows our choices may not be good. In other words, God is not like us. A selfish heart will use manipulation, deceit and any other means at its disposal to satisfy its selfish desires! God does not work this way. He is motivated by pure love. God is selfless. The vision recorded in Daniel 11 reveals Israel’s failure long before the seventy weeks began. If God foreknew their failure, why did God give Israel 490 years of probationary time? (For that matter, God foreknew the failure of Lucifer and Adam and Eve, yet He gave them life and probationary time.) These examples highlight what is so amazing about God. Even though He foreknew Israel’s failure, God granted seventy weeks of grace because He wanted Israel to have the opportunity to succeed or fail. The potential was awesome. If Israel chose a life of faith and submission to God, God was ready and willing to establish His kingdom on Earth at the end of the 490 years decreed in Daniel 9. If Jesus had been able to establish His kingdom on Earth, Israel would have become a kingdom of priests who served the Lord on behalf of all the nations of Earth. (Exodus 19:5,6) However, we now know that Israel chose the way of rebellion, and God abandoned the nation of Israel and destroyed Jerusalem. If the Jews had experienced God’s love and properly understood Daniel 10-12 before Jesus came to Earth, world history would have been so different.


3.  Caught in the Middle


The Daniel 10-12 vision tells the story of a series of protracted wars fought over several centuries. In a geographical, religious and political sense, Israel was trapped in the middle of endless wars between nations from the north and south. Israel’s unique position mirrors the general experience of God’s people in a fallen world. Many times God’s people are “caught in the middle” between opposing forces. Moreover, God forbade Israel from taking sides or making alliances for protection (Isaiah 30), because He wanted Israel to understand that they were only safe if they remained allied with Him.


Keep three entities in mind as you study this vision: the kingdom of the north, the kingdom of the south and the kingdom of God. God placed the ancient nation of Israel geographically “in the middle of the nations.” (Ezekiel 5:5) He deliberately placed Israel in this strategic location to be representatives of His love and truth. God wanted the nations of the world to become acquainted with a special group of people. However, a prominent position can have adverse consequences, too. When Israel failed to honor God, He humiliated them by making them a reproach to all of the surrounding nations. (Ezekiel 5:14) God displayed His wrath against Jerusalem two times; first in 605 B.C., and again in A.D. 70.


Israel’s prominent location was to be an asset or a liability, depending on their relationship with God. The vision given in Daniel 10-12 proves that God deliberately restored tiny Israel to their homeland at the end of seventy years in Babylon, but their return tome put them between two huge warring forces. If Israel had cooperated with God, they would have had a powerful impact on the nations to the north and to the south. Israel could have used this prophecy to demonstrate the superiority of their God above the gods of the pagans, because this vision discloses the outcome of numerous wars before they happened! God wanted His people to be informed about His larger plans, and He wanted Israel to tell the nations that other than Jehovah, there are no other gods. (Isaiah 44) God did not want Israel to be afraid of the larger nations, but God’s plans were not realized because of Israel’s rebellion. As a result, the only group that has benefited from the vision thus far was early Christians.

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