Daniel in the Lions Den
Daniel the Prophet
Welcome to the Continued Plight of Daniel
As you may remember, Daniel is now serving in his third administration through obedience to God and his skills which included interpretation of dreams. This came in handy since this phenomenon of dreams and vision interpretation was widespread during this period of time.
Daniel found himself in a hereditary priesthood among them called the Magi, a rather powerful set of priestly magistrates. Daniel’s skills propelled him to be appointed the Rab-mag, their chief in other words. One of the past mentors of mine Dr. Chuck Missler, states:
“When Darius appointed him, a Jew, over the previously hereditary Median priesthood, the resulting repercussions resulted in the plots leading to the lion's den. Daniel apparently entrusted a messianic vision (to be announced in due time by a "star") to a secret sect of the Magi for its eventual fulfillment.” (Dr. Missler)
Our word “magistrate” comes from that very root. Just imagine how the regular Sooth-Sayers felt to have this Jew appointed over their hereditary priesthood. So, pride and jealousy led them to King Darius with lies that led to Daniel being put into the lion’s den. Darius did not like doing this to Daniel and spent a worrisome night.
Daniel in the Lions Den
God Spares His Servant Daniel
What King Darius found after his fitful night relieved him. In the morning when he and the guards checked they found Daniel totally unharmed after a night with the lions. God had miraculously spared his servant Daniel.
King Darius then fed Daniel's accusers to the lions. The table had turned. Please read Proverbs 25.2,
"It is the glory of God to conceal a matter;
to search out a matter is the glory of kings."
Note: Daniel in his official duties established a cable within the priesthood as conservators of a private prophecy that resulted in the fabled visit to the birth at Bethlehem over some four centuries later.
Daniel, the Prophet
Daniel Takes a Break on the River
Now we jump ahead to Daniel chapter 7, Daniel after a day of work is sitting on the banks of the river in Babylon when he has a night vision.
- A creature like a winged lion that comes out of the sea.
- He saw another creature – a bear raised on its side.
- He saw a leopard that moved so fast its feet did not touch the ground.
- In the fourth, there is no animal, with the second phase having ten heads.
Going back to Daniel chapter 2, we saw the kingdoms of the world as a man might see them – bright shiny metals. However here in Daniel chapter 7, we see the same series of empires as the Lord God would see them; a series of voracious beasts.
Upon careful study, we see Daniel’s dream of the empires of chapter 2, and the vision he had in chapter 7 both were about the same four empires, the fourth empire being in two phases.
Daniel and Alexander the Great
Daniel and Alexander the Great
The vision on the river Euphrates is about two years after the vision of chapter 7, but twelve years before the fall of Babylon in chapter 5. Having sat through several classes on Daniel, I recall these six chapters at the end of Daniel being like an appendix. So, Daniel chapter 8 was given between chapters 4 and 5.
In Daniel's vision, he saw a ram and a goat, and the ram was extremely powerful but was defeated by the goat attacking from the west. It was the Greek empire against the Persian Empire. The notable horn of the goat breaks into four horns. There is a little horn that has a key role in the end.
Is this confusing? Please read on and it becomes clearer.
Daniel interpreted that an empire that was a leader from the west which turned out to be Alexander the Great, who subdued the Medo-Persian Empire. Then there is the little horn that plays a key role at the end you remember.
Important Note: This is so vivid when Alexander the Great entered Jerusalem, the High Priest showed him the writings of Daniel and Alexander recognized himself and his career being prophesied and he spared the city
The Four Horns
Alexander Divides the Four Horns
It is very interesting that the notable horn breaks into four. Alexander on his deathbed was asked who would get or inherit the empire, he said, "Give it to the strong." His four strongest generals divided it.
- Cassander took Macedonia and Greece
- Lysimacus took Thrace, Bithynia and most of Asia Minor
- Ptolemy took Egypt, Cyrene, and Arabia Petraea
- Seleucus took Syria and all the lands east to India
Ptolemy and Seleucus are the two we are concerned with in relation to Biblical history. Israel was the buffer state between continual tensions between the Ptolemy of Egypt and the Seleucid Empire.
It is one of those leaders, portrayed as the "little horn" who is in fact the one and only Antiochus Epiphanes, whose desecration of the Temple led to the Macabbean revolt its dedication is celebrated to this day as Hanukkah.
If I Engage My Brain Enough Thoughts
If we had more men like Daniel, the world would not be in the mess it is currently in. Daniel studied the Bible and lived it in the world his entire life. His short book needs to be studied by every man and woman regardless of whether they are Christian or not. It is a roadmap of life for everyone.
Being at the end of the road of my life I feel that I can speak truthfully in love without holding back. Daniel did the same near the end of his book as well. Please consider giving feedback to my writing and not only mine but others as well. We all work hard to put these up for your enlightenment and learning. God's blessings and peace be unto to you this day, Gary
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This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Gary E Hill