Summary: Daniel is a man marked by a daily walk with God that is steadfast and solid. In every instance where he is tested and tried, he simply places it all in the hands of God. Yet, here in the 7th chapter, we find, for the first time, a Daniel distressed. Le
A DISTURBING DREAM
INTRODUCTION: Daniel is a man marked by a daily walk with God that is steadfast and solid. Throughout the first 6 chapters we see a Daniel who above all else remains unshaken by what is happening around him. In every instance where he is tested and tried, he simply places it all in the hands of God. Yet, here in the 7th chapter, we find, for the first time, a Daniel distressed. Twice in this passage, his dream and visions “distress him:
Daniel 7:15 "I, Daniel, was troubled in spirit, and the visions that passed through my mind disturbed me.
Daniel 7:28 "This is the end of the matter. I, Daniel, was deeply troubled by my thoughts, and my face turned pale, but I kept the matter to myself."
What distresses Daniel is no ordinary dream or even a nightmare – it is a revelation from God. This revelation discloses future events, events which puzzle Daniel to the point of distress.
I A NOTE ABOUT THE TIMING – 7:1
A Notice who is king
2 Not Darius
3 Chronologically, this chapter comes before chapter 6
4 Placed here by Daniel because of it link to chapter 7
B The age of Daniel
1 Probably about 69 years old
II THE EVENING OF THE DREAM – 7:1-8,15-28
A Daniel had a dream – the word dream emphasizes the unity of what Daniel is seeing. His dream is meant to be taken as one prophetic unit
B Daniel had a dream of visions – the word visions (plural) is meant to emphasize the stages or progression of the revelation.
1 “looked” – 2,6,7,11,13
C The content of the dream
1 Same substance as the dream of Nebuchadnezzar – only different symbolism. IE: covers the same period of time.
2 Specific location of the dream
a Great Sea
b Terminology for the Mediterranean Sea
c A specific vision related to the Mediterranean World.
d Specific people of the dream – those who inhabited the area
1) Churned up
2) Troubled by what is and would happen to them
3 The first beast
a Lion with the wings of an eagle
b Strength and swiftness
c Both animals are symbols of the Babylonian Empire
Jeremiah 4:7 A lion has come out of his lair; a destroyer of nations has set out. He has left his place to lay waste your land. Your towns will lie in ruins without inhabitant.
Jeremiah 4:13 Look! He advances like the clouds, his chariots come like a whirlwind, his horses are swifter than eagles. Woe to us! We are ruined!
Ezekiel 17:3 Say to them, ’This is what the Sovereign LORD says: A great eagle with powerful wings, long feathers and full plumage of varied colors came to Lebanon. Taking hold of the top of a cedar,
d Wings are torn off – loss of mobility
e Lifted from the ground on two feet
1) Like a man
2) With a man’s heart
a) Loss of beastly nature
b) Increase of compassion
c) The return of sanity to Nebuchadnezzar
4 The Second Beast
a A bear reared up on one side
b The Medo/Persian Empire
1) One stronger side
2) Persian Empire
c An empire of formidable strength
d Three ribs being devoured in its mouth
1) Three kingdoms conquered
e Conquered by command
1) Operation by divine authority
2) Actually fulfilling God’s command
5 Third Beast
a Leopard with four wings
1) Leopard is noted for swiftness
Habakkuk 1:8 Their horses are swifter than leopards, fiercer than wolves at dusk. Their cavalry gallops headlong; their horsemen come from afar. They fly like a vulture swooping to devour;
2) Leopards are noted for cunning
Jeremiah 5:6 Therefore a lion from the forest will attack them,
a wolf from the desert will ravage them, a leopard will lie in wait near their towns to tear to pieces any who venture out, for their rebellion is great and their backslidings many.
3) Leopards are noted for agility
Hosea 13:7 So I will come upon them like a lion, like a leopard I will lurk by the path.
4) The addition of four wings denotes swiftness BEYOND the natural capacity
a) Greeks conquered the Medo/Persian Empire in just 4 years!
5) Given authority to rule
a) Authority by God
b) At the time the Greeks conquered the Medo/Persian Empire, the Greeks had an army of 30,000, and the Medo/Persian army numbered several 100 thousand!
6) At the death of Alexander the Great, the empire would be divided into four sections!
6 The Fourth Beast
a A indescribable mongrel, representing the Roman Empire.
Rev. 13:2 The beast I saw resembled a leopard, but had feet like those of a bear and a mouth like that of a lion. The dragon gave the beast his power and his throne and great authority.