Times Of The Gentiles Fulfilled
Dr. Joe Temple

Introduction

We come to the last vision which Daniel was privileged to have, the vision described in the last three chapters of the book—chapters 10, 11, and 12. The body of the vision is found in chapter 11, and that is the portion at which we wish to look.

If you are familiar with this section of the Scripture, you probably have been confused at what you have read because there are a series of pronouns which it is difficult to relate to their antecedents unless you take the time to go back to other verses to see exactly what is meant.

So before we begin, let us bow our heads and ask the Lord to help us in our study. Our Father, we are grateful that we have this opportunity of meeting together. Thank you, our Father, for the rain and what it will mean to those who need it. We do pray as we look into the Word that Thou wouldst open this particular portion. Help us to understand what is before us, and as our hearts thrill to the fact that the future is portrayed, we pray, our Father, that we will live accordingly. For we pray in Jesus' name and for His sake. Amen.

Prophecy That Covered Three Hundred Years Of History

In chapter 11, will you notice verse 2. Gabriel says:

Daniel 11:

2And now will I shew thee the truth. Behold, there shall stand up yet three kings in Persia; and the fourth shall be far richer than they all: and by his strength through his riches he shall stir up all against the realm of Grecia.

He has just told Daniel the reason he has come. So he shows Daniel the truth in the paragraph which begins with verse 2 and concludes with verse 35. If you were to compare this section of the Scripture with a history of this period, you would find that Gabriel is speaking of three hundred years of history.

The thing that is most amazing is that three hundred years of history were written by the Holy Spirit through Daniel before the history ever occurred. So minute is this history that higher critics, so called, insist that Daniel could not have written it. Of course, they do not believe in the inspiration of the Bible, and they say that the only way this could have been written was for an individual to write it after it had happened. But those of us who believe in the inspiration of the Bible realize that the Holy Spirit was able to reveal truth to those who wrote the Word of God, and we find no difficulty in believing what is before us.

Clearer Presentations Of Daniel 11

We are going to read just portions of this, so that you will know what Gabriel is talking about. I would suggest that when you have the time, you read this very carefully, comparing the Scripture with history to verify what we are going to say. And may I add this other thought for your understanding of this portion of the Scripture: If you have an Amplified version of the Old Testament, it is the clearest presentation of this particular chapter that I have found. The Revised Standard version is an improvement over the King James version in this instance, and the American Standard version is an improvement, but by far the best is the Amplified version.

In verse 2, we read:

Daniel 11:

2And now will I shew thee the truth. Behold, there shall stand up yet three kings in Persia; and the fourth shall be far richer than they all: and by his strength through his riches he shall stir up all against the realm of Grecia.

Four Kings Of Persia

You remember that this prophecy was given in the third year of Cyrus, the king of Persia, according to the first verse of chapter 10. Three kings were to come after Cyrus, according to the testimony of Gabriel. If you are familiar with history, you remember they were Cambyses, pseudo-Smerdis, and Darius. The fourth king, who is described here as far richer than they all, and who stirred up all his might against Greece, was Xerxes.

Greece Becomes The Major Power

Eventually, an opportunity came to Greece for a vengeance upon Persia, in a mighty king (verse 3) who stood up and ruled with great dominion and did according to his will. He is identified beyond all doubt, even if we did not have history fulfilled, by the statement in verse 4:

Daniel 11:

4And when he shall stand up, his kingdom shall be broken, and shall be divided toward the four winds of heaven; and not to his posterity, nor according to his dominion which he ruled: for his kingdom shall be plucked up, even for others beside those.

Alexander the Great had two sons. One of them was killed in battle just as the battle was beginning; one of them was killed just as the battle was ending. Alexander had no posterity to whom to leave his kingdom and, you will remember, the kingdom was divided into four different parts among four of his generals.

Kingdoms Of Egypt And Syria

Beginning with verse 5 and concluding with verse 20, there is a record of two hundred years of warfare between two of these four divisions. They are referred to as the King of the South and the King of the North . The King of the South would, of course, be the king of Egypt, and the King of the North would be the king of Syria. This is the difficult portion of the chapter, for one verse after another describes how the King of the North made an attack on the King of the South and how the King of the South retaliated. While they were not fighting, they were making treaties with the design of outsmarting each other. They even made alliances by intermarrying the royal family of Egypt with the royal family of Syria. A king would send his daughter to be the wife of another king, and he would tell her while she was in the other palace to write back home all the secrets so they would know exactly what was going on.

We are not going to take the time to read these verses because they are simply a statement of how the King of the South approached the King of the North and how the King of the North approached the King of the South. But if you read these verses alongside history, recognizing that the Holy Spirit of God wrote them long before the events ever occurred, your heart should thrill to the truth of God's Word.

The Reason For Mentioning Egypt And Persia

Perhaps you are wondering exactly why it is that the record of these two kingdoms and their warfare should be contained in the Word of God, when other types of warfare were more significant and far more important. The answer is found in the fact that in between the kingdom of the North and kingdom of the South lay a portion of the land that is referred to as the glorious land (Dan. 11:16) The glorious land is the land of Palestine. These kings fought most of their battles in the land of Palestine, going back and forth through the land, conquering it, laying it waste, and bringing reproach upon the people who inhabited the land—namely, the nation of Israel.

Illustration Of A Ruler Who Is Yet To Come

If you will look at verse 21, you will be introduced to a king about whom we need to read because the Lord Jesus Christ Himself made reference to him. He became a historical character, as far as the Word of God is concerned, primarily because he is an illustration of a ruler who is yet to come upon the earth and who will do what he did, except in a greater way:

Daniel 11:

21And in his estate shall stand up a vile person, to whom they shall not give the honour of the kingdom: but he shall come in peaceably, and obtain the kingdom by flatteries.

The first pronoun his in verse 21 refers to the oldest son of Antiochus, and his name was Seleucus. He died at a very early age, and another king ascended the throne. He did not ascend the throne by proper means; he obtained the kingdom and ascended the throne, if you will glance at verse 21, through flattery, and by ingratiating himself with those who were in authority. He is referred to as a vile person, yet he was so amazing in his ability to dominate and to get his own way that he was called Antiochus Epiphanes. The word Epiphanes means “the splendid.” It was applied to Antiochus, who was “splendid” in his majesty and power.

Antiochus Epiphanes Expands His Kingdom

After he attained the throne, the kingdom, by flattery, you will notice, in verse 22, that he began to use his influence to gain even greater dominion and greater ends:

Daniel 11:

22And with the arms of a flood shall they be overflown from before him, and shall be broken; yea, also the prince of the covenant.

The pronoun they refers to the people who lived in the land of Palestine. “The prince of the covenant” in this verse refers to the High Priest who was ministering at that particular hour. Notice verse 23:

Daniel 11:

23And after the league made with him he shall work deceitfully: for he shall come up, and shall become strong with a small people.

Antiochus Epiphanes Works In Deceitful Ways

Daniel 11:

24He shall enter peaceably even upon the fattest places of the province; and he shall do that which his fathers have not done, nor his fathers' fathers; he shall scatter among them the prey, and spoil, and riches: yea, and he shall forecast his devices against the strong holds, even for a time.
25And he shall stir up his power and his courage against the king of the south with a great army; and the king of the south shall be stirred up to battle with a very great and mighty army; but he shall not stand: for they shall forecast devices against him.

Method of Defeating Egypt

That is, they shall infiltrate his army, learn of his plans, and defeat him. In verse 26:

Daniel 11:

26Yea, they that feed of the portion of his meat shall destroy him, and his army shall overflow: and many shall fall down slain.

That verse emphasizes that he would be defeated by the men of his own army, the men who sat at his own table and ate his own food. That is one reason Antiochus Epiphanes is referred to as a vile, deceitful person. He has the ability to infiltrate, to lead astray, and to defeat without a very great battle. Verse 27:

Daniel 11:

27And both these kings' hearts shall be to do mischief, and they shall speak lies at one table; but it shall not prosper: for yet the end shall be at the time appointed.

That last phrase is of interest because it reminds us what we have already learned in relation to the book of Daniel—that no matter what men may plan, God overrules; the plans of these men at the conference table did not materialize because God was not yet through with his planning. Verse 28:

Daniel 11:

28Then shall he return into his land with great riches; and his heart shall be against the holy covenant; and he shall do exploits, and return to his own land.

Antiochus Takes His Spite Out On The Jews

This simply means that on his way back to Syria, as he stopped through the land of Palestine, he would do exploits there; he would fight battles there because his heart was turned against the holy covenant—that is, the agreement he made with the Jewish nation. Verse 29:

Daniel 11:

29At the time appointed he shall return, and come toward the south; but it shall not be as the former, or as the latter.
30For the ships of Chittim shall come against him: therefore he shall be grieved, and return, and have indignation against the holy covenant: so shall he do; he shall even return, and have intelligence with them that forsake the holy covenant.
31And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice, and they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate.
32And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.

Let's stop for a moment and think about what we've read. After Antiochus had returned to his own land and settled down for a time, he decided it was again time to make war against the land of Egypt. So in verse 29, he started out for that purpose, but he was not as successful as he had hoped because somebody intervened.

In verse 30, the ships of Chittim came against him; that is, the Roman Empire intervened in behalf of the land of Egypt, for Rome was just coming into prominence at that time. We read in verse 30 that he was grieved, and he decided to return home; but we read that he had to take his spite out on somebody, and so he did. He had indignation against the holy covenant—that is, the people of the holy covenant, the Jews. He even had intelligence with them that forsook the holy covenant. Those who were not true to God, according to verses 31 and 32, he was able to corrupt; those who were true to God could not be corrupted.

You will notice in verse 31 what he did. He took away the daily sacrifice and placed in the temple “the abomination that maketh desolate.”

Jesus Warns Of Another Abomination Of Desolation

You will remember that in chapter 24 of the gospel according to Matthew, the Lord Jesus Christ was speaking about a future time of trouble that is yet to come upon the earth. He said, “Remember the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet. When you see a similar thing begin to come to pass, then if you are on the housetop, don't take time to come down and get your clothes, but run as fast as you can to the mountain. When you see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, come to pass again, if you are out in the fields don't worry about getting home and changing clothes; take refuge immediately, because it will be time so to do.” This is the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet.

The Abomination Of Desolation By Antiochus Epiphanes

If you are not familiar with the Maccabees and are interested in pursuing this study, I suggest that you go by the library and read some of the paragraphs in the First Book of the Maccabees. There you will read how it was that Antiochus Epiphanes did the very thing that we are reading about here.

First, he took a pig into the temple and sacrificed it on the altar. That was an insult in itself, in view of the way the Jews felt about swine. Then he set up an idol of himself and demanded that they bow down and worship that idol. He insisted that the daily sacrifice cease, for the daily sacrifice was the worship of Jehovah; and as long as the daily sacrifice continued, there could not be any worship of the idol of which he spoke.

Suffering Of Those Who Remain Faithful

In verse 23, we read:

Daniel 11:

23And after the league made with him he shall work deceitfully: for he shall come up, and shall become strong with a small people.

I referred to the first book of the Maccabees a moment ago. In the Maccabees, we have an illustration of this particular verse. This verse was written long before the Maccabees were heard of, but this verse speaks of them, for no group of people has ever suffered in the interest of their country any more than did the Maccabees as they labored to deliver the nation of Israel from the dominion of the king of Assyria. We read in verse 34:

Daniel 11:

34Now when they shall fall, they shall be holpen with a little help: but many shall cleave to them with flatteries.
35And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to purge, and to make them white, even to the time of the end: because it is yet for a time appointed.

That one verse of Scripture describes the history of the nation of Israel from the time of the Maccabees down through the present hour and on until the time when the end of the age will actually occur. Many Jews have fallen; many of them have been purged. You read in history about purges of the Jews such as occurred under Hitler. Many of them are seduced with flatteries, deceived, and taken advantage of. It is part of what God said would occur as His chastisement upon them because of their rejection of their Messiah.

If you will look at verse 36, you will come to the beginning of the portion of the Word in which we are primarily interested because it is related to the future.

The Tribulation

If we were able to indicate it in some fashion, in between verses 35 and 36, we would indicate the entire Church Age, the age in which we are living at the present time. This age will come to an end, as you remember studying in the Word of God, when the Lord Jesus Christ comes for His Church and takes it out of the world. Then there will begin a period of time on the earth which is known as the Tribulation, or the Time of Jacob's Trouble, or the Time of Indignation, as it is referred to here.

The Antichrist Arises

That period of time will be characterized by a number of things. One chief characteristic will be the appearance of a king who will be similar to Antiochus Epiphanes, a king who will be a world ruler, who will do all that is said about Antiochus in these verses of Scripture. This king is known in other portions of the Word of God as the Antichrist. Let us see what Daniel has to say about him, for some day such a person will arise. In verse 36:

Daniel 11:

36And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvellous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done.

What God has ordained shall be accomplished. In verse 37:

Daniel 11:

37Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all.
38But in his estate shall he honour the God of forces: and a god whom his fathers knew not shall he honour with gold, and silver, and with precious stones, and pleasant things.

Let's stop for a moment and think about these two verses of Scripture because there is room for discussion. Some people are of the opinion that when we read, “Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers,” it indicates that he a Jew who will not regard the God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob. Some feel that the phrase, “the desire of women,” describes the Lord Jesus Christ because this is a phrase that is used in the Word of God to describe Him. The Amplified version reads: “He shall not regard the gods of his fathers, or Him [to whom] women desire [to give birth], or any other god, for he shall magnify himself above all.”

This clause, “Nor regard any God: for he shall magnify himself above all gods,” leads some people to believe that, “the desire of women,” does not refer to the Lord Jesus Christ, but to the fact that this king has no interest in women; he has no interest in any god, for he intends to magnify himself above all gods. The god which he honors with gold and silver and with precious stones and pleasant things is himself, for he does make a god of himself and insists that all individuals fall down and worship him. The only god he really honors is the first part of verse 38, the god of forces, or the god of power. Now verse 39:

Daniel 11:

39Thus shall he do in the most strong holds with a strange god, whom he shall acknowledge and increase with glory: and he shall cause them to rule over many, and shall divide the land for gain.

The Force That Empowers The Antichrist

This strange god from whom he gets help, we know from our study of the book of Revelation, is none other than the Devil himself, for the Devil will empower the Antichrist to do the things that he is going to do. The Devil will enable the Antichrist to rule over many, and particularly to have complete control of the land of Palestine. Whenever you see mention of “the land,” as you do in this chapter, you are reading about the land of Palestine.

The Armies Who Fight The Antichrist

The last statement of verse 39 is particularly significant because when the Antichrist decides to divide the land of Palestine, trouble begins for him. You will remember that in the book of Revelation, chapter 19, and in the book of Zechariah, chapter 14, we are told that the armies of the world will be gathered together in the land of Palestine, in the plains of Megiddo, for the purpose of fighting with and against the Antichrist.

The purpose of that battle, or the reason for the gathering of those armies, is described in the statement here. The Antichrist decides to divide the land of Palestine, and immediately trouble begins. Look at verse 40:

Daniel 11:

40And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over.

The King of the South, remember, is Egypt. The King of the North up to this point has been Syria. But the individual spoken of here is out of the land of Syria, so when you read that the King of the North comes against him, it has to be a confederacy of nations still farther to the north. When you compare this passage of Scripture with the last chapters of the book of Revelation, you will find that the confederacy of the north is headed up by Russia.

Current History Shows Preparation For Fulfilling Prophecy

I am emphasizing this because it is an interesting thing to me to watch the nations of the world that once have passed into the mists of antiquity coming to the forefront again. I believe it is in preparation for this particular time.

The land of Egypt sat for centuries in darkness, and nobody paid much attention to her except as the land of dusty history. But she has approached the forefront of the stage now; she has become one of the leading nations of the world, and she is already protesting everything that is being done in and around the land of Israel. Surely that indicates that the time is fast approaching for the fulfillment of this prophecy.

What about Russia? Have you noticed how Russia is protesting anything and everything that is related to the Middle East? Have you noticed how anxious she is to dominate there, even as elsewhere? Have you noticed how many comments have been made relative to the fact that Russia stirs up smoke screens here, in Germany, and all over Europe so that we won't notice too much what she is doing in the Middle East?

These things indicate to me that surely we are approaching the time of the end. Look at verse 41:

Daniel 11:

41He shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown: but these shall escape out of his hand, even Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon.

Apparent Total Victory For The Antichrist

We are in the habit of saying that the Antichrist will dominate the whole world. But that is a relative statement. These countries, for reasons known only to God—Edom, Moab, and Ammon—will escape his hand. In verse 42:

Daniel 11:

42He shall stretch forth his hand also upon the countries: and the land of Egypt shall not escape.
43But he shall have power over the treasures of gold and of silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt: and the Libyans and the Ethiopians shall be at his steps.

He is going to have complete victory in the Middle East, but suddenly something will happen to disturb him. In verse 44, we read:

Daniel 11:

44But tidings out of the east and out of the north shall trouble him: therefore he shall go forth with great fury to destroy, and utterly to make away many.

Trouble From The Far East

The King of the North, in verse 40—Russia—finds allies in the nations of the east. They all will come together against the Antichrist. We are told in the book of the Revelation that the Euphrates River is dried up and made a broad highway so that the nations of the east may approach without any hindrance whatsoever. Here we are reminded of the apparent division between Russia and China. That division will be healed, and China will ally herself, along with other Asiatic nations, with Russia for this final great conflict. So don't think that the nations that are in the forefront of the stage today will fade into insignificance; they will not. Verse 45:

Daniel 11:

45And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him.

Certain Defeat Of The Antichrist

Literally, this is, “between the sea,” not “seas.” Between the sea and the glorious holy mountain is Mount Zion. The Antichrist will put his camp between Mount Zion and the Mediterranean Sea in what is known as the Plains of Megiddo. At that time, he shall come to his end, and none shall be able to help him.

Thus the angel Gabriel brought to an end the truth that he had come all the way from Heaven to earth to reveal to Daniel, and Daniel recorded it for us that we may be forewarned.

Chapter 12 of the book of Daniel represents an appendix which we will consider next, the Lord willing, adding some thoughts and tying together the loose ends of the prophecy of Daniel.

Our Guarantee That Prophecy Will Be Fulfilled

If you are wondering of what particular interest this is, basically it is always of interest to know what the Word of God has to say; but you should receive a blessing from knowing that prophecy has been fulfilled. What we read in the early part of the chapter, as we mentioned to you, represents three hundred years of history, prewritten, and yet fulfilled to the most minute letter. What we have read with you in the last part of the chapter represents that which is going to occur. As you see the various nations of the world rising and falling, you will know those nations which are going to be in leadership at the end of this era, and in so knowing, you can be prepared for the coming of the Lord, which is the next thing on God's prophetic program.

Shall we bow our heads together for prayer. Our Father, we are grateful that we have this time together in the Word. And we are grateful, our Father, that Thou hast not left us to wonder about the future. We are glad that Thou hast written it plainly so that we may hasten as we read. Grant that we may not be negligent in our responsibility to tell forth the story of Christ in view of the fact that the end of the age is so very near. As we realize it is near, Our Father, we do pray that we may look up and know that our redemption draweth nigh. For we pray in Jesus' name and for His sake. Amen.


Home Contact Us Bible Studies Books King James
Abilene Bible Church Living Bible Studies
Dr. Daiqing Yuan Tim Temple Dr. Joe Temple
Some icons on this site used courtesy FatCow Web Hosting

www.livingbiblestudies.org