Summary: Part 12 in a series on the prophecies found in the book of Daniel. This starts as in depth look at chapter 11 and the first 42 months of the Tribulation Period.
The Prophecies of Daniel
Part 12: The First 42 Months (Daniel 11:21-22, 36-38)
We have reached the twelfth week of our study of the prophecies found in the Old Testament book of Daniel. Last week we laid the groundwork for our in-depth study of chapter 11. This week we are going to start interpreting the final half of that chapter verse by verse and see what they have to tell us about the latter days and the reign of the last king of the North, the Antichrist.
Those of you who were here last week, I hope you brought your map and handout of the parallel verses in Daniel 11 back with you this morning. If you weren’t here or forgot yours there are a few extra copies on the vestibule table should you need one.
Just a brief review so we can remember where we are at. Verses 21 through 45 of Daniel, chapter eleven are all dealing with the first 42 months or 3 ½ years of the seven-year Tribulation period when the Antichrist is going to gaining his power in preparation to rule the earth the for the last half of the seven-years. In these verses all mentions of the king of the North are referring to the Antichrist who will arise from somewhere in the Lebanon, Syria, Northern Iraq area. This area was once a part of the Seleucid Empire, or the kingdom of the North as marked in red on your maps.
We didn’t talk much about the king of the South last week. But since in the historical interpretation of Daniel 11, the king of the South was Alexander the Great’s general, Ptolemy, who took over Egypt and the surrounding areas, then I have interpreted the king of the South, in the last days will also come from the same area – namely Egypt and the surrounding countries marked in green on your maps.
Now the king of the south may have another secondary meaning. The word translated in English as “south” is the Hebrew word “negeb” from which we get “Negev,” as in the Negev Desert. The Negev Desert is today the very southern-most part of Israel. It is bordered by Egypt on the west and Jordan on the east. I’m not sure what this reference to the Negev means in the scheme of prophetic events, but it is an area to keep an eye on. One prophecy teacher has even speculated that the Negev may be part of the land Israel gives up for the forming of a Palestinian State. Then the king of the South may refer to a leader of a Palestinian State. While this is possible, only time will tell events this will play out that way.
But as for my own personal opinion and our interpretation of these verses, I believe that the king of the South is mainly a reference to Egypt and the surrounding countries, of which the Negev Desert may play a part.
And one final thing, I personally believe the Antichrist will be a radical Muslim or at least come from within the Islamic religion. As I showed you in part last week, I also believe that the long awaited final Islamic prophet, the Mahdi, is the same person as the Christian Antichrist. I have therefore, interpreted these verses in Daniel 11 based on those beliefs, because in my opinion they don’t make sense if viewed any other way.
Okay, having all that in our heads, let’s tackle Daniel 11 in-depth, verse by verse, starting with verse 21.
Daniel 11:21 (NIV), “He [the last king of the North] will be succeeded [followed] by a contemptible person [the Antichrist/Mahdi] who has not been given the honor of royalty. He will invade the kingdom when its people feel secure, and he will seize it through intrigue.”
Here is the first mention we have the Antichrist/Mahdi figure in chapter 11. He is the vile or contemptible person who comes to power in the Northern Kingdom. Notice that this verse tells us that he was not given the honor of royalty. The KJV says that they [the people of the kingdom] shall not give him the honor of the kingdom. This means that when the Antichrist/Mahdi rises to his leadership position it won’t be because he was next in line to succeed the last leader. Nor will he be elected or chosen by the people to rule over them. They don’t give him the honor of the kingdom. He comes from the outside and takes over the kingdom or country.
This verse even says how he takes control of the kingdom. “He will invade the kingdom when its people feel secure, and he will seize it through intrigue.”
The English Standard Version of the Bible, which is a translation that hold true to the original Hebrew and Greek meanings of the words says it this way, “He shall come in without warning and obtain the kingdom by flatteries.”