Summary: Here is a highly controversial passage, yet for the bible-believer, it is really quite clear. There will be a kingdom and a fierce and powerful king, but he will choose the wrong opponent and be destroyed.
Passage: Daniel 8:1-27
Intro: When we run across a highly technical and controversial passage like this…
1. we can’t figure out the “so what?”
2. that quickly goes to “who cares”
3. God has a purpose, so don’t miss it while we dive into this fascinating passage.
4. as time marches on, and prophecy is fulfilled, He wants us to trust His word.
5. 2nd, He wants us to find comfort in the truth, because the lie will grow stronger and stronger.
6. fear is our enemy, faith is our stronghold.
7. we are going to approach this like we do the rest of the Bible.
8. what does the text say, what conclusions can we draw, and what educated guesses can we make.
I. Daniel’s Second Vision
1. getting used to this, Daniel full of dreams and visions.
2. more animals, this dream featuring a two-horned ram with one horn longer, and a very fast shaggy goat with one strong horn
3. goat defeated the ram, but then horn broke off and was replaced by 4 horns.
4. another horn grew out of the four; it started small and threatened “the Beautiful land”
5. ultimately it interrupted the regular sacrificial system, which remained undone for 2300 “evenings and mornings”
6. if that was all the information we had, we would join Daniel in v15 in trying to understand what he was seeing.
II. The Details of the Interpretation
1. God supplied the interpretation without being asked, just like in Rev.
2. and we need to look at all the details, because God does not waste words.
3. first, notice vv17 and 19. There is a critical time notation, mentioned twice.
4. “time of the end” word=cut off, end, clip, time of final punishment.
5. and another qualifier, “the time of wrath”
6. then one more time indicator in v26, “distant future”
7. when something is repeated and qualified, we need to pay attention.
8. v20, shaggy goat w/ 2 horns, Medo- Persia. Very clear
9. shaggy goat=Greece, fast conqueror=Alexander the Great v21
10. died in 323 B.C., kingdom became four smaller kingdoms, v22
PP four kingdoms of divided Greece
11. v23, “latter part of reign” seems pretty clear.
12. another qualifier, “when rebels become completely wicked”…who, when?.
13. “stern-faced…will arise” v23
14. v24, strong with outside power, cause astounding devastation, and “holy people” will be included in this destruction. “Kadosh” (last week)
15. v25, deceit will rule, very proud,
16. take his stand against “Prince of princes”
17. ultimately destroyed by outside power, not humans
18. so what is this kingdom, and who is this powerful king?
19. remember; we need to look at all the details.
III. Was This Prophecy Completely Fulfilled by Antiochus Epiphanes ?
1. very popular conclusion, check your Study Bible margin! Let’s run it down
2. came from Seleucid Dynasty,
PP Seleucid Dynasty
3. very powerful, cruel, devastator
4. deceitful, attacked Israel/Jerusalem
9:5. killed many Jews, ended Temple sacrifice for correct time frame, (depending on your interpretation of 2300 “evenings and mornings”)
6. all fine and good, but a couple of details are puzzling.
7. “time of the end” from vv17,19. End of what? And if that was the end, what are we in now?
8. “rebels completely wicked” who are these guys, and what does this mean?
9. could this refer to a time when the restraining power of God against sin is lifted?
10. destroys “Kadosh”, which we saw last week does not refer to large group of Jews in OT, but used only of group in NT
11. “takes stand against Prince of princes”, who most say is God
12. yet this word is only used twice in the OT to refer to a divine being; here and in Isaiah 9:6
PP Isaiah 9:6…clearly God-man, Jesus
13. so I believe that while Antiochus partially fulfilled prophecies, a complete fulfillment is still there at “the time of the end”
14. But the Seleucid empire is no more!
IV. The Antichrist Fits All the Details
1. Hang on!!! Let’s put the puzzle
2. “time of the end”…yes
3. “when rebels are completely wicked”
4. another power source
5. given power over the “saints”
6. power over all nations-devastation
7. takes his stand against The “Prince of princes” We know who this is!
8. and finally, he is destroyed not by man, but by God!
9. one problem remains. Where is the Seleucid Empire?
V. The Awakened Seleucid Empire
1. God has a different view of land than we do.
2. He gave the Promised Land to Israel, and they have reclaimed it.
3. other nations are where He wants
PP Acts 17:26
PP here is the old Seleucid Empire