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Daniel 11-12

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9/11/2005
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Daniel 11-12
Daniel 11-12
Skip Heitzig
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27 Daniel - 2005

In this study, Skip Heitzig takes a look at the uncompromising life of the prophet Daniel, the Jews' exile in Babylon, and some of the most important prophecies in the Bible, pointing out God's sovereignty in the midst of turbulent times.


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Dr. Martin Lloyd Jones pastored a church in London, England, the Westminster Chapel. He took over for his pastor predecessor before him, G Campbell Morgan. Martin Lloyd Jones was a medical doctor who went into the ministry. And he noted a very interesting thing that happened just prior to the Spanish Civil War and then on the onset of the Spanish Civil War in Madrid and Barcelona.

You see, right before the Spanish Civil War, the psychiatric clinics were packed. People had phobias and fears and anxieties and required counsel and therapy for a number of personal issues. But he said among the interesting things that happened as soon as the Spanish Civil War began is that all of these psychiatric clinics emptied instantly. He said they were suddenly cured by a greater anxiety. You see, up till that point their worries were about personal fears and phobias and anxieties. Suddenly, they became more concerned about will I have a husband, will my son come back from the war, will my house be wiped out. And he said it's interesting that greater anxieties cure lesser anxieties.

Daniel was bothered by an anxiety that he took to prayer in Chapter Nine. He was reading the book of Jeremiah and he realized it looks like 70 years of captivity are up and he went to confess the sin of his people and his own sin before the lord. And it brought concern to him. Well, God through his angel revealed more to Daniel than he bargained for, as he was able to look into the future not just at the return of the Jews from Babylon to Israel but at the future persecution for hundreds of years on into the future that would touch his people, the people of Israel in the future.

You remember when Daniel Chapter 10 opened up. And by the way 10, 11, and 12 are one unit. That's the fourth and final version of the book of Daniel. Daniel's about 85 years young at the time. He'd been serving the lord all of his life. But as Daniel 10 opens up, it says, I mourned for three full weeks. I didn't eat any pleasant bread. I didn't take any meat or wine to my mouth. He was so distraught at what the angel revealed to him about the future, a greater anxiety.

And we're going to find out why in Chapter 11 and on into Chapter 12 tonight. Because what Daniel saw in the future for Israel, for his people was conflict after conflict, war after war. And it really bothered him. If you were to look at history in a thumbnail sketch you would discover that only 8% of history has been a time of peace. For every 13 years of war, there's only been one year of peace. In fact one source, the Canadian Army Journal and the Institute of war in London said that if you took the value of destruction from all of the wars that have been fought over the past few thousand years that it would form a belt of pure gold 97.2 miles wide-- that's about from here to Barstow, or a little greater-- 97.2 miles wide, 33 feet thick that would go around the whole earth.

So Daniel looks into the future, sees the coming wars, and the tribulation that will come. And the best way to view Chapter 11 and 12 is through the lens that God has already given to us in Daniel 9, the lens of the 70 weeks of Daniel. And we've covered that territory as to their meaning. But the first 35 verses look at the future conflicts of Israel, future to Daniel, fulfilled and past tense to us, during the first 69 weeks. Whereas the last part of the book verse 36 to verse 45 deal with the future conflicts in Daniel's 70th week. So let's jump in in verse one and see the conflicts.

To us of the past, that is the 69 weeks of Daniel, it says also in the first year of Darius the Mede, I, even I, stood up to confirm and to strengthen him. Now remember, an angel has been speaking to Daniel. He saw a vision of the lord Jesus Christ, we believe a theophany of Christ. But then there was this other angelic messenger that touched him and strengthened Daniel and brought him to his feet. And it's that angel from Chapter 10 that is still speaking. And then the first few verses we have some of the conflicts that deal with Persia. Persia had a long and glorious history, you might say. But two specific incidents are revealed here or focused on here.

He says that I, that is the angel, stood up to confirm and strengthen him. And now I will tell you the truth. Behold, three more kings will arise in Persia and the fourth will be far richer than them all. By his strength and through his riches he shall stir up all the realm of Greece. We know that Babylon was conquered by the Medes and the Persians. And we also know that it was the decree of Cyrus the Persian who allowed the Jews to go back to Jerusalem, go back and repopulate their city and rebuild it.

However, last week we discovered that there was somebody called the prince of Persia, a strong demonic angel who for 21 days kept a good angel that was dispatched to give Daniel a revelation, that he was withstood for 21 days by the prince of Persia. And so this angel said, look, I've got to go back and fight the prince of Persia. And Michael the angel had to be dispatched. And we'll discover that Michael was the defender and still is the defender of the nation of Israel from an angelic standpoint.

So as Daniel looks into the future, and as the angel says, I am going to strengthen Darius, that ruler of Medo Persia along with Cyrus, to strengthen them so that the Jews rather than being persecuted would be allowed to go back and enter their land. But it says that three more kings shall arise. The fourth shall be far richer than them all. By his strength through his riches he will stir up all the realm of Greece. Four more rulers came to Persia and the fourth, the final one mentioned here, is Xerxes.

And Xerxes was stronger and richer by far. He took an army of 2 and 1/2 million strong and a navy of hundreds of ships to fight against Greece. And he was defeated by Greece, then Alexander the Great took over. Now in verse three we get the prophecies concerning Greece, including Alexander. Then a mighty King shall arise who shall rule with great dominion and do according to his will. And when he has risen, his kingdom shall be broken up and divided toward the four winds of heaven but not among his posterity, that is among his own children, his family, nor according to his dominion with which he ruled for his kingdom shall be up rooted even for others besides these.

Alexander the Great was a bookworm. Aristotle was his tutor. His mother was a great influence in young Alex's life and persuaded Alexander that he was great, that he was given a special duty to perform by the gods of the Greek pantheon themselves. In fact, she tried to convince him that he was a god. And he, at 18, was a petty prince. Four years later at just 21 years of age he had practically taken over the world. He was very powerful. He was very swift in his victories. We've already covered that.

At age 31, there really wasn't anything left to conquer. He was in Babylon at the time. He tried to go to India. His troops were tired so he went back. And at age 31, this young man wept on his bed in Babylon because there was nothing left to do. What do you do when you've conquered the whole world? What's left? He didn't know. So he had no future challenge, no further challenge. And so he wept.

Now there is a debate as to how Alexander the Great died. We know that in Babylon when he was 33 years of age he had a special dinner with 20 selected guests. He drank what was called the Hercules cup. And after he drank a certain cup of wine, he was stricken with what they said was a fever. Though some suspect that he was poisoned. On his deathbed they ask him the question, to whom shall go the kingdom. He said give it to the strong. And they interpreted that to be his four generals.

Now Alexander the Great had a half brother who was mentally retarded. Alexander the Great had an illegitimate son. And he also had a baby not yet born but was born after his death that his wife bore. All of them were murdered. So that none of his children would ever reach the throne or his relatives but rather it was scattered to the four winds as we see or four generals took it. General Cassander took Macedonia and Greece. Lysimachus took the Thracian empire and Asia Minor.

And then the other two generals, mark them well because the rest of the chapter will deal with the wars between them and their posterity for 200 years. General Seleucus took the area of Syria, the north part to Israel. And down south in Egypt, Ptolemy took Egypt and part of the environs of Israel. Now they're referred to as the King of the North and the King of the South. And they're listed and you have an outline that lists several of them and the wars that ensued.

Now when it mentions the King of the North and the King of the South, the geographical reference to them is Israel. They're north of Israel and south of Israel. They're not north and south of where Alexander the Great started over in Greece. They would be more to the east. But they are the kings of the north and the kings of the south because Israel is the geographic reference. So verse five through verse 20 is this battle between the Seleusids and the Ptolemies, 200 years of battles.

Also the King of the South shall become strong. First one was Ptolemy the First, called Soter or Savior is the Greek term, one of Alexander's wisest and most capable generals, as well as one of his princes. This is Ptolemy the Second, Philadelphus who's also mentioned in the outline. He will gain power over him and have dominion. His dominion shall be a great dominion. And at the end of some years, they shall join forces for the daughter of the King of the South shall go to the King of the North to make an agreement but she shall not retain the power of her authority and neither he nor his authority shall stand but she shall be given up with those who brought her and with him who begot her with him who strengthened her in those times.

What happened was this. A political marriage was arranged between Antiochus the Second and Ptolemy the Second's daughter named Berniece. She was given to Antiochus the Second. The stipulation was that Antiochus the Second would have to divorce his wife to get this younger trophy wife Berniece from down south. The name of Antiochus's wife that he would have to divorce was Laodicea. A city was later named after her. Laodicea would have none of her rival Berneice but rather poisoned her husband Antiochus the Second and killed Berniece, setting up her son Seleucus the Second upon the throne.

But from a branch of her roots one shall arise in his place who shall come with an army, enter the fortress of the King of the North that is the Seleucid king. By the way, you'll read names like Seleucus I, II, II and Antiochus I, II, III, and IV. And all of those are names of the northern kings, the Syrian kings. Whereas Ptolemy I, II, III and IV, those are the names of the Egyptian or Ptolemaic empire or the kings of the south.

So enter the fortress of the kings of the north and deal with them and prevail. So this is Ptolemy the Third. And Ptolemy the Third was the brother of the murdered Berniece who invaded Syria and occupied it for a while all the way up to the borders of Babylon. And he will also carry their god's captive to Egypt with their princes and their precious articles of silver and gold and he shall continue more years than the King of the North.

You notice all the details that are given. Just a note about that. In the first 35 verses, we suspect scholars have counted no less than 135 specific prophecies that to Daniel were yet future to us are now past. They have been documented. They have been fulfilled. You can read Daniel Chapter 11 and come out with the conclusion, well, yes there were prophets in Israel. They were just good guessers. This defies all odds the incredible detail of 135 specific and now fulfilled predictions. It's incredible.

It's so incredible that it has brought the ire of the skeptic, especially the liberal, who lives with the pre-supposition that there is no such thing as predictive prophecy hence this wasn't written before but must have been written after the fact. There is so much evidence-- we've already covered some of it, I don't want to take away time tonight-- that would overturn those arguments. Incredible details. Even here to the spoils of war that are taken and the idols. 4,000 talents of gold, 40,000 talents of silver to be exact were taken in the spoils that are predicted along with 2,500 idols. And notice this also in verse eight, he will continue more years than the King of the North. This Ptolemaic king reigned 24 years while Antiochus the Third only reigned 20 years. So it was a much shorter reign by four years and so it is mentioned, detailed, and documented.

Also the King of the North shall come to the kingdom of the King of the South but return to his own land. After two years of this, the Seleucids up north reorganize. And they came down to Egypt once again and started fighting against them. And you see this rivalry back and forth, back and forth, sort of like the Hatfields and McCoys. Just always at each other's throat. Never getting along. Future generations fighting against them after Alexander died.

However, his sons shall stir up strife and assemble a multitude of great forces. And one shall certainly come and overwhelm and pass through. Then he shall return to his fortress and stir up strife. Ptolemy the Fourth Philopator, he's mentioned in the outline, marched through Judah on the way down or on the way up to Syria. And had to face the King Antiochus the Third. And the King of the South shall be moved with rage and go out and fight with him, with the King of the South who shall muster a great multitude. But the multitude shall be given into the hand of his enemy.

Ptolemy defeated Antiochus. This particular Ptolemy defeated this particular Antiochus the Third. To celebrate victory, he gave a tour with his army of the area that he had conquered including, he thought, Jerusalem. History tells us that he tried to enter into the holy place and the holy of holies but he was stricken with paralysis. God wouldn't let him in. He was so angry that he went back to Egypt and persecuted the Jews that lived in Egypt because he was paralyzed and couldn't get into the holy place and the holy of holies.

And the King of the South shall be moved with rage, again in verse 11, go out and fight with him, with the King of the North, who shall muster a great multitude but the multitude shall be given into the hand of his enemy. After the death of Ptolemy the Fourth, Ptolemy the Fifth took over. Ptolemy the Fifth was only four years old when he became king of all of that southern kingdom. So he had to form alliances, those that gave him advice knew, and so it wasn't just Egypt but it was other alliances that formed with him, as we will see.

When he has taken away the multitude his heart will be lifted up and he will cast down tens of thousands but he will not prevail. For the King of the North will return and muster a multitude greater than the former and shall certainly come at the end of some years with a great army and much equipment. Now in those times, many shall rise up against the King of the South. Also violent men of your people shall exalt themselves in fulfillment of the vision. But they shall not fall. So the King of the North shall come and build a siege mound and take a fortified city and the forces of the south shall not withstand him. Even his choice troops shall have no strength to resist.

Now we are giving some details as to the change of guard in these monarchs that are mentioned, but we're not going into all of the details of the 135 fulfilled prophecies. It would take several weeks of Sunday night to get through Chapter 11. This is a jet tour. We're just getting right over the tops of the trees and getting some of the highlights. But again incredibly fulfilled now historically documented evidence. But he who comes against him shall do according to his own will and no one shall stand against him. He shall stand in the glorious land. And we know that's the land of Judah. It's called that a couple of other times in Daniel. Over in Jeremiah Chapter Three it's referred to as the pleasant land, always a reference to Israel and in particular Judah.

He shall also set his face to enter with the strength of his whole kingdom and upright ones with him thus shall he do. And he shall give him the daughter of women to destroy it. But she shall not stand with him or be for him. In 197 BC, this Antiochus the Third with his fleet of ships entered three southern ports that were controlled and run by Egypt. He did not prevail. In fact he was defeated.

Antiochus's daughter, remember before there was one of the Ptolemy's daughter that was given to one of the Antiochuses as this military marriage, this kingdom alliance. Now Antiochus's daughter by the name of Cleopatra, yes the Cleopatra from history, was given to Ptolemy who is now only 10 years old. It was an arranged marriage. As a dowry, Antiochus was to give part of Syria, part of his kingdom, the nation of Israel, Judah, and Phoenicia to this young king, saying look, you conquered me, you and your forces. We're going to be subservient to you.

Now what he hoped is that his daughter Cleopatra would be able to annex Egypt, thinking my daughter's there. She is going to stand up for me and help through intrigue for me to get the Ptolemaic empire back under Seleucid control. It didn't happen. What happened rather is that this gal fell in love with her husband as he grew, became loyal to him and loyal to Egypt and loyal to Egypt's new ally which was the budding Roman Empire, which was just starting to grow at the banks of the Tiber River. And they made an alliance with Egypt. And she went along with Egypt and with his alliance with Rome.

So God is behind the scenes controlling all of this. Daniel is getting a vision that Israel is sandwiched in between the northern and southern kingdoms and the conflict is because the Jews are being affected by it. Verse 18, "After this he shall turn his face to the coast lands and shall take many. But a ruler shall bring the reproach against them to an end. And with the reproach removed, he shall turn back on him." In 196 BC, Antiochus turned westward in his efforts to expand the kingdom. The Roman army was again a budding army and the Roman Empire a budding empire.

Hannibal the great, the Carthaginian general, talked Antiochus into warring against Rome, which he did. And it was a mistake because he lost. Verse 19, "Then then he shall turn his face toward the fortress of his own land. But he shall stumble and fall and not be found." 191 BC, Antiochus was defeated at the famous battle of Thermopylae where the Romans basically wiped him out. He had to surrender his territory west of the Tarus mountains. And he was fined. He had to pay the taxes in the equivalent of $33 million to Rome, which he could not afford. He didn't have it in the bank roll. It ruined him.

Now in verse 20, "There shall arise in his place one who imposes taxes on the glorious kingdom. But within a few days he shall be destroyed but not in anger or in battle." Antiochus's brother, guy by the name of Seleucus, you could guess, Seleucus the Fourth was now reigning instead of his brother. His brother was over there as a captive in Rome. Seleucus the Fourth took his own son and shipped him over to Rome in exchange for his brother as a captive. Kind of a heartless thing that a father would do but he did it.

Then because he had to pay off the taxes that was imposed upon him by this New Roman government, he gouged the people under his control at that time, the children of Israel. He overtaxed them. And it says in verse 20, the glorious kingdom, he will impose taxes on, but within a few days he shall be destroyed. That few days was actually 12 years of oppression and taxation. And I find it interesting that God puts it in the perspective of a few days.

If you look at the few days in terms of history, it is but a few days. 12 years is long to us especially when we're suffering. It it's such a long time. But from God's perspective, if you look at the flow of human history, it was just a few days. And God again in control behind the curtains, moving the scenes, and moving the emperors around.

Now the question comes, why such detail in verses five through 20. Why such incredible and meticulous detail about daughters and kings and kingdoms and alliances? For a few reasons. Number one, because it affected the Jewish nation. Israel was sandwiched in between these two empires that were at odds for 200 years. And it affected them. And though they were sandwiched in between them and affected, taxed, and warred against, they survived. So to encourage Daniel, yes, wars are coming but Israel will survive, God has a plan for that nation. Because they affected the Jews they're brought about in this prophecy. There's never been a group or a nation that has been as harassed and hassled and persecuted as the Jewish nation has. That's just a matter of historical record.

I'll give you just a thumbnail sketch. 50,000 Jews were killed at Seleucia. 20,000 were killed in Caesarea by the Syrians. In 70 AD when the Romans came against Jerusalem, they killed 1 million 300,000 Jews. Constantine, when he became the emperor, outlawed Jews from his kingdom cutting off their ears and appendages and dispersed them. In the sixth century AD. 60,000 Jews were slain. More were sold into slavery. The rise of Islam in Northern Africa most of the Jews were banished or killed during that period. The crusades of the 11th century gave to the crusaders an interesting motto, kill a Jew and save a soul.

And some of the records show that the soldiers from the crusades boasted in the fact that they killed x amount of Jews in one day or slaughtered a woman who was pregnant with child thus killing two Jews with one blow. As history moves on in 1350, the Black Plague hit Europe. Guess who was blamed for it. The Jews. Again, more exile, more death. In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue, Spain exiled the Jews in the Spanish Inquisition was on. 800,000 of them were forced out to sea and most died by exposure. Than there was Nazi Germany. 6 million, at least, Jews slaughtered under the regime of Adolf Hitler.

So no nation has ever suffered the kind of attacks that Israel has. And Daniel sees just enough to make him sick to his stomach and to be in mourning for three full weeks. There's another reason. Because God wants to give to Daniel and thus to us throughout history a foreshadowing of another ruler who will come who is even worse. His name Antiochus Epiphanes, Antiochus the Fourth, we'll read about him in a moment, which will then foreshadow another ruler who is coming in Daniel's 70th week, the Antichrist.

There is a third reason I think. Because God is God. And to show off his track record, God gives this kind of detail. You remember that God through the prophet Isaiah called upon the false gods of other nations to produce the kind of prophetic utterances that God was capable of doing. Go ahead, he said, predict the end from the beginning. See if you can do what I can do. So one of God's calling cards, you might say, the evidences of who he is is prophecy and fulfilled prophecy.

One of the things that prophecy does for us as we see God fulfilling it is it purifies us. It excites me as I look back on history and I see God's hand in bringing all of this to pass. Because then I look at the promises that God has given that are yet unfulfilled. And I know they're going to come to pass. I have no doubt. I look at the track record. Somebody once said that every tomorrow has two handles, the handle of anxiety or the handle of faith. How many people do you know are grabbing hold of the handle of anxiety? I don't know what's going to happen. What crisis is coming next? What will happen to my family? What about the gas prices? What about the Middle East? What about, what about.

But as we see, prophecy, the promises of God predicted and fulfilled, it moves us to grab a hold of the handle of faith. Corrie ten Boom said it well. Never be afraid to trust an unknown future into the hands of a known God. This is the God we love and serve. Now several rulers have been covered in the previous verses. And one in the next few verses is given more space from verse 21 to 32. It's the Syrian or northern King Antiochus the Fourth. Verses 21 to 24 describes his rise to power.

And in his place shall arise a vile person as if the others hadn't been. But this one really is. To whom they will not give the honor of royalty but he shall come in peaceably and seize the kingdom by intrigue. This fourth Seleucid that is Antiochus the Fourth illegally and by intrigue, seized the throne. He'll give himself a name and confer upon himself the title that no one else will give him. With the force of a flood, they shall be swept away from before him and be broken and also the prince of the covenant. Now the prince of the covenant probably refers to a high priest called Onias, who in 171 was murdered. 171 BC.

And after the league is made with him he shall act deceitfully for he shall come up and become strong with a small number of people. He shall enter peace of peaceably even into the richest places of the provinces. And he shall do what his fathers have not done nor his forefathers. He shall disperse among them the plunder, spoil, and riches. And he shall devise his plans against the strongholds but only for a time.

Antiochus the Fourth was a devoted worshipper of Zeus. Zeus in the Greek pantheon was the head honcho god. He was the god who controlled the Greek pantheon. He controlled the precarious activities of all the gods and goddesses. And he was a devoted worshipper of Zeus. In fact, he fancied himself an incarnation of Zeus or god in human flesh, Zeus in flesh. So Antiochus the Fourth gave himself the name Antiochus Theos Epiphanes. I am Antiochus god made manifest.

In fact, a coin was minted showing Antiochus on the throne holding up his scepter. I have a copy, an actual coin from that era. And on the back it says Antiochus the image of God, the bearer of victory. So he basically called himself God. He is a perfect foreshadow of someone who will come in Daniel's 70th week called the Antichrist. The Jews never called him Antiochus Theos Epiphanes. They called him by their own nickname, Antiochus Epimenes. Epimenes means crazy dude. That's my translation. Mad man. He's nuts because of what he did to them.

The invasion of Egypt is covered in the next few verses and the subsequent victory. Verse 25, "He will stir up his power and his courage against the King of the South, with a great army. And the King of the South will be stirred up to battle with a very great and mighty army. But he shall not stand for they shall devise plans against him." This invasion occurred in 169 BC. It's a matter of history. Yes those who eat of the portion of his delicacies shall destroy him. His army shall be swept away and many shall fall down slain. Both these kings' hearts shall be bent on evil. And they shall speak lies at the same table.

It sounds like a political conference, doesn't it? Sounds a lot like the peace conferences that go on today. But it shall not prosper for the end will still be at the appointed time. In other words, God is behind the scenes controlling the actions and decisions. While returning to his land with great riches, his heart shall be moved against the holy covenant. And he shall do damage and return to his own land. After Antiochus the Fourth, Antiochus Epiphanes, swept down to Egypt and plundered them, got the victory, he went back to Syria. On the way, since he was going through Israel, he stopped in Jerusalem. And he plundered the temple.

Now this is not the abomination of desolation. That will be covered in the next few verses. But he plundered the temple. He took out of the holy place the menorah, the seven branched golden lamp stand. He took the table of showbread. And he took the golden altar of incense. He took some of the golden bowls and vessels and silver platters that the priests would use. And he stole the veil that separated the holy place from the holy of holies. He took it with him back to Syria. Let's see what happens.

At the appointed time, he shall return and go toward the south. But it shall not be like the former or the latter. Now this is his second campaign against Egypt. He went from south, conquered them, went back up to north plundering the temple. Now he's feeling really good about himself. I'm going to go do it again. Well, it wasn't like the first time. It wasn't met with success. In fact, it was met with defeat. Because Egypt now has some allies that are growing stronger. It's the Romans. For ships from Cyprus shall come against him. Therefore, he shall be grieved, and return in rage against the holy covenant and do damage. So he shall return and show regard for those who forsake the holy covenant.

Antiochus the Fourth went down to Egypt. And just outside of Alexandria, Egypt, he was met by the commander of the Roman Navy who said, Antiochus, don't you think you can come here and wage war again. We are now friends and allies with this Ptolemaic empire. And unless you turn around and stop and go back home now, you are declaring war against the Roman Empire. And we will kill you and all of your troops.

Now he felt a little embarrassed by this. He wanted to go ahead and attack. So some of the soldiers drew a circle in the sand around Antiochus, and said, you are not leaving this circle until you give us your oath that you are going back home. Now all of his troops are watching this. And the Roman legions are watching this. And he feels awfully embarrassed but he knows he's no match for them. So he agrees to them. And he goes back to Syria but he's embarrassed. And he's angry.

And as he goes up north, guess who he stops by to see. Yes. Jerusalemites, once again. And it says he acts in rage and he vents his rage toward them. It says therefore he shall be grieved in return and rage against the holy covenant and do damage. So he shall return and show regard for those who forsake the holy covenant and forces shall be mustered by him and they shall defile the sanctuary fortress. Then they shall take away the daily sacrifices and place there the abomination of desolation. Those who do wickedly against the covenant, he shall corrupt with flattery. But the people who know their God shall be strong and carry out great exploits. Keep that tucked in your mind for just a moment.

And those of the people who understand shall instruct many yet for many days they shall fall by the sword and flame by captivity and plundering. Now when they fall, they shall be aided with a little help but many shall join with them by intrigue. And some of those of understanding shall fall to refine them, purify them, and make them [INAUDIBLE] until the time of the end because it is still for the appointed time. Antiochus went to Jerusalem. He was mad. He had been defeated. He took it out on the Jews. After all, they would not bow to the Greek customs.

You know, Alexander the Great always had a desire that he would Hellenize the entire world, that is make everybody speak Greek and follow Greek customs. And for the most part, he succeeded. There's only one stubborn group of people, the Jews. So Antiochus takes all of his problems out on them. They're the reason. It's because they haven't bowed to my rule up to this point. That's why I've been embarrassed in Egypt and among these Romans.

So he kills 80,000 Jews in Jerusalem. And he takes 40,000 of them and sells them off as slaves. He goes into the temple. He stops the sacrifices. They are forbidden to sacrifice in the morning and evening offering. No more sacrifices in the temple. Instead, he puts harlots in the temple. He erects a statue of, guess who, Zeus the God that he worships. After all, he's the incarnation. He sets up idols in the temple, commands the unclean pig, the most unclean thing to Jewish kosher palate, and he commands that the swine be sacrificed on the altar of sacrifice. The juices of the swine, the pigs scattered throughout the temple. It's a capital crime now in Jerusalem to possess a copy of the scriptures. It's a capital crime to keep the sabbath. It's a capital crime to circumcise your child.

Anyone who would defy him would be immediately killed. And he meant business. Both first and second Maccabees they are not biblical books, though they are great historical books, fill in some of the blanks. Two women defied Antiochus Epiphanes in Jerusalem, circumcised their babies on the eighth day. And he decided that he would kill the babies and drape the dead babies around the neck of each mother and make them walk around the streets of Jerusalem carrying their dead baby on their neck until finally at the end of the day he marched them on the precipice of the temple toward the Kidron Valley and pushed them over to their death.

One woman who had seven boys defied all of Antiochus's rules. Antioch decided that she should pay. And she did. Her seven boys were lined up, their tongues were cut out of their mouths in front of mom. And then they were roasted on a flat iron until death. And then he killed her, the mother. That's why the Jews called him the crazy dude, the monster, the madman. He does violence to the holy covenant. And that was called the abomination of desolation because the sacrifices were stopped. He puts an image in the holy place.

Yet it says something interesting that those who know their God will be strong and carry out great exploits. I believe that's a reference to the revolt. I'll give it to you briefly. Down south of Jerusalem there was a family in a city called Modine. They were Hasmonean priests. The dad was named Mattathias. When Antiochus's troops came down and gave the spiel of all the new laws they had to follow, no circumcision, no sabbath, et cetera, this general of Antiochus forced everybody to bow allegiance to Antiochus and to Zeus. And most everybody in town did. They didn't want to. But they thought, we'll get killed if we don't.

This Hasmonean priest, Mattathias, came forward to where everybody was bowing down before the statue. But he took out his dagger and he killed the general. And he said, let's revolt. And this Maccabean revolt against the Syrian army began on the 5th of Kislev in 167 BC. And it continued, he eventually died and his sons took over principally his son Judah or Judas Maccabee is called the hammer because he took the revolt all the way to Jerusalem, overturning the Syrians, driving them out and dedicating the temple in the winter of 165 BC.

They did great exploits. They trusted God. They said, this is what God wants us to do. Now that festival called the festival of light is known today as Hanukkah. Or the feast of dedication, you read about it in John Chapter 10. Jesus was in Jerusalem for the feast of dedication and it was winter. It's the festival of lights. According to the story, we don't know how true it is the legend. The Jews would say it's absolutely true. There was only enough oil for the menorah to burn one day in the temple. But God miraculously let it burn for eight days. And so it's called the festival of lights, reminiscent of the dedication of the temple.

So remarkable, 135 specific prophecies fulfilled here in the book of Daniel. Now in verse 36 through 45, we turn now to conflicts of the future. We've looked at 69 weeks and the battle zone for Israel between the kings of the north and the kings of the south. Now there is a gap as we leap across the centuries into the future and verse 36 this new leader is simply introduced as the king. It is not Antiochus the Fourth. Antiochus the Fourth is only a type. But it's the future because it continues on into Daniel Chapter 12 where the angel continues to say this is going to be a time in history unparalleled. It's the worst time. Never before in the past, never again in the future will it be that bad.

Verse 36, "Then the King shall do according to his own will. He shall exalt and magnify himself above every god. He shall speak blasphemies against the god of gods, and shall prosper till wrath has been accomplished for what has been determined shall be done." This Antichrist, unlike Antiochus the Fourth, who didn't exalt himself above Zeus, this one will exalt himself above every god. The Antichrist will be like his mentor Satan. Remember Satan wasn't content with being the anointed cherub that covers but says, I will ascend above the stars of God. I will be like the most high.

Well, Paul the apostle tells the Thessalonians that this Antichrist will be similar. He said, who will oppose and exalt himself above all that is called god or is worshipped. And one of the reasons, I believe, in the future the world will flock to the Antichrist is because he will exude self-determination and confidence. It's interesting that what the bible exalts as a notable virtue the world sees as absolutely worthless. The bible will exalt the humble. God exalts the humble. God puts down those who are prideful. But the world sees as a virtue pride. They call it self-esteem.

Public enemy number one to the world is a low self esteem. The Antichrist will exude confidence, self determination, and high self-esteem. And the world will marvel at that and love that. I don't want to pick on the Texans, but you know, Texas has always everything bigger and better, right? Oh, we have that too but ours is bigger. I heard about a Texan who went to the Niagara Falls. And his friend from New York knew there wasn't anything like it in Texas. And he says, you got anything that big in Texas? The Texan looked at him and says, nope, but we got plumbers who can fix it.

The Antichrist will promise to the world the ultimate fix it solution to all the problems. He'll be so confident. Big promises. Verse 37, interesting verse. Three aberrations seem very odd or eccentric. He shall neither regard the God of his fathers nor the desire of women nor regard any god for he shall exalt himself above them all. Now I want to go through this rapidly because of time.

Says he won't regard the god of his father. Some think that must mean he's Jewish, the Antichrist because that's a term that often refers to-- used in the bible, the god of his fathers-- to refer to the god of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the patriarchs. So it must mean he's Jewish.

However, the word here not regard the god of his fathers is the word in hebrew, Elohim, and can be translated gods, even pagan gods. So the idea may simply mean he will have no respect for any kind of ancestral heritage, any kind of spiritual upbringing. He'll be totally secular in his outlook.

Nor the desire of women, now admittedly this is a difficult verse or phrase to interpret. It could mean that he won't have any kind of natural love for a mother or a sister or a wife. Some have suspected that it means the Antichrist will be a homosexual. Given the morals of today, that wouldn't surprise me at all. It could mean something else. If the Antichrist is Jewish, that little phrase, the desire of women, would have meant from Daniel's perspective a messianic hope. The desire of every Jewish woman before Christ came would be that they would be the bearer of the messiah. It's all their literature. It could simply mean he will have no messianic hope at all. He claims that he is the messiah.

And it says he will not regard any god for he will magnify himself above them all. So he'll say that he is god. He is to be worshipped. But in their place, he shall honor a god of fortresses. Now that term is used five times in this chapter. And it means say a place of protection, usually military might. A god which his fathers did not know, he shall honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and pleasant things. Thus he shall act against the strongest fortresses with a foreign god, which he shall acknowledge in advance its glory. And he will cause them to rule over many and divide the land for gain. Power will be his god. And he will expend all of his monetary resources to gain military power, to gain control, and to finance war.

Verse 40, now we come to the best part. This is his end. This is his annihilation. And you could take verses 40 down to 45 and put it in revelation Chapter 16 and 19, the battle of Armageddon. At the time of the end, which is the second part of the seven year period, Daniel's 70th week, the three and 1/2 last years of tribulation, the King of the South shall attack him and the King of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, horsemen, and many ships. He shall enter the countries, overwhelm them, and pass through. He shall enter the glorious land and many countries shall be overthrown. But he shall escape from his hand [INAUDIBLE] Moab and the prominent people of Ammon. He will stretch out his hand against the countries. And the land of Egypt shall not escape. Now this is the final north and south conflict.

And before the King of the South met Egypt, in the future-- and we've already piece together in previous prophecies-- there will be a coalition in the south of Egypt and North African countries, including Libya and Ethiopia. Now it mentions the King of the North, and some think this is the Gog Magog scenario. Not necessarily. That probably happened much earlier. And this is again the Arab states above Israel, including Syria. And if you look at all of what Syria used to encompass, it's several nations up north.

He shall have power over the treasures of gold and silver and over all the precious things of Egypt, also the Libyans and Ethiopians shall follow at his heels. But news from the east and the north shall trouble him. Therefore, he shall go out with great fury to destroy and annihilate many. And he will plant the tents of his palace between the seas. If you go over to that part of the world, in Israel, there's two seas. There's the Dead and the Med. The Dead Sea marks the eastern border. The Mediterranean Sea marks the western border of the land. In between the seas is the holy mountain mountain, Mt. Zion, Mt. Mariah, the Temple Mount, Jerusalem.

He will plant the tents of his palace between the seas and the glorious holy mountain. Yet he shall come to his end and no one will help him. He's going to set up headquarters in Jerusalem, moving his troops from Europe, moving them to the Middle East. He will hear of distressing or it says troubling news. But news from the east and the north shall trouble him therefore he will go out with great fury and annihilate many.

Make a long story short, the Antichrist with his troops converge in the Middle East, end up in the valley of Armageddon on their way to Jerusalem with his alliances. They will be met by a very wonderful surprise. Jesus Christ coming with the host of heaven. You're going to get a front row seat. As Jesus comes down, it's really not the battle of Armageddon because Jesus doesn't have to fight long and hard. In Revelation 19, his garment is sprinkled with blood. And Isaiah tells us it's the blood of his enemies. So the Antichrist and his army, their blood will be sprinkled on the garments of Jesus in that total wipeout. Jesus will come back, put his foot on the Mount of Olives, it'll split in two. Jesus will set up his kingdom upon the Earth.

Daniel 12, it's a few verses. And pastor Chuck covered so much of the importance of this chapter this morning. And so I commend to you that study, that tape, or that CD. And so we'll be able to go through it and we'll be able to finish it.

At that time, Michael shall stand up, the great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people. And there shall be a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation. Even to that time, and at that time your people, that is the Jews, shall be delivered every one who is found written in the book. Now keep in mind Daniel is looking far into the future. The kings of the north and the south, the Ptolemies and the Seleucids fighting it out, Israel in between, Antiochus Epiphanes killing, plundering, destroying.

He goes further into the future and he sees that desolations are yet determined. It's not over with Antiochus Epiphanes. It wasn't over with Adolf Hitler. The Antichrist will pursue and try to annihilate the Jews during that period. Now it says Michael shall stand up. There are two angels that are mentioned by name in the bible. Gabriel is one. Michael is the other.

Gabriel is the messenger angel. He brought a message to Daniel. He brings a message to the shepherds in Bethlehem. He's in the presence of God. Michael, an archangel from the presence of God, is the great deliverer of the children of Israel. His job is to defend Israel. He's written about also in the book of Jude. And Revelation Chapter 12 sheds much light on Daniel Chapter 12. Here's a couple of verses. "And war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought. But they did not prevail, nor was place a place found for them in heaven any longer."

Satan is cast down to the Earth. During the tribulation, Satan and his demonic hordes will do everything in their power to annihilate the Jews. God will preserve them and protect them east of Israel in a place called Petra, Bosra during that three and 1/2 year period. So these angels, they're so prominent in the book of Daniel.

You know, angels, the writer of Hebrews tells us, are ministering spirits sent to minister to those of us who are heirs of salvation. They surround you. They guard you. Aren't you glad that God has dispatched his angelic beings to watch out after you? Now I've never met my guardian angel that I know of. Many of entertained angels unaware. Who knows? Maybe the person sitting next to you tonight is an angel. You're looking at him, going probably not. But maybe. But probably not.

And listen, I think you can relax a little bit. We get so worried about the devil, the demons, they're out there. For every one wicked, evil, demonic being, as powerful as they are, that fell with Satan, two did not. They're outnumbered. Yeah, a third fell, but two thirds didn't. And they're on your side. So I think you're covered.

And many of those who sleep in the dust of the Earth shall awake. This is the Resurrection. Some to everlasting life. Some to shame and everlasting contempt. When the bible uses the term sleep it doesn't refer to the soul. It refers to the appearance of the body. You've been to funerals and you've seen as you look in the casket, if it's done right, they look like they're asleep. It's the appearance of a sleep. They're very much alive. And if they're believers, they're in the presence of the lord having a great time.

So they'll sleep and be resurrected. The idea is just as a person takes a nap. You know, when you're a kid and your parents say, it's time to take a nap, it's punishment. The older you get, it's a reward. And you have no more to fear death than you do to fear a nap. Just like you take a nap and you'll get up, OK, you die-- that's what we call it-- you'll get up. That's a resurrection. And the bible talks about two resurrections, the first and the second. They're separated by 1,000 years.

The resurrection for believers, the tribulation saints, and those who have been translated at the rapture, the first resurrection, you take part of that, you have no fear of the second death, Revelation tells us. 1,000 years later comes the second resurrection of the unbelievers. And that is eternal separation from God, everlasting contempt. Those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the firmament. And those who turn many to righteousness like the stars forever and ever.

In context, this may refer to the time of tribulation period When those Jews who are saved and believe in the messiah run around and tell others, don't listen to the Antichrist, don't be submissive to him, turn to Jesus Christ. We know that two witnesses are going to fuel 144,000 Jewish evangelists and a whole number of multitudes. It will be very active during that time, evangelistically. Some of the greatest crusades in history will occur during that time.

But you, Daniel, seal up or shut up the words and seal the book until the time of the end. Many shall run to and fro and knowledge shall increase. Pastor Chuck talked about that. Then I, Daniel, looked and there stood two others. One on the riverbank. And the other on that riverbank. And one said to the man clothed in linen who was above the waters of the river-- remember that one that we saw, that luminescent one as the lord Jesus Christ, the theophany. How long shall the fulfillment of these wonders be? Then I heard the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand to heaven and swore by him who lives forever that it shall be for a time times and half a time. And when the power of the holy people has been completely shattered, all these things shall be finished. The Antichrist reign will be three and 1/2 years, the second part of the tribulation.

Although I heard, I did not understand. Then I said, my lord, what shall be the end of these things. And he said, go your way, Daniel for the words are closed up and sealed until the time of the end. It's kind of a drag. You know, Daniel's 85. He's just gone through a traumatic visions. And now he just wants to know a little more. And the messenger says, see you, Daniel. It's closed till the time of the end. Live your life, man. You'll be resurrected. Don't worry about it.

Now we know that John was told in the book of Revelation, don't seal up the prophecies of this book. That which was sealed up to Daniel is no longer sealed. And notice, it says in verse four, seal it till the time of the end. Many shall run to and fro and knowledge shall increase. This must refer to the knowledge of the things that are sealed up in Daniel that are revealed today from the revelator John who gave us a fuller vision of the future in Revelation. It's no longer sealed.

Our knowledge of these things has increased. We can see the fulfillment of them, very easily. I have an interesting commentary on Daniel by Sir Isaac Newton, the famous scientist, an ardent believer and follower in Christ. He wrote lots of words about the bible but few remain. In fact, the only book that really remains intact is his commentary on Daniel and the apocalypse of John. I have a copy in my library, and because of verse four where it says many will run to and fro and knowledge will increase, on the basis of this verse Isaac Newton speculated-- this is back in the early 1700s-- that in the future from his time knowledge would so increase that people would be able to travel quickly, over 50 miles an hour.

Now some of you do that on your street in the morning, even though it's marked 35. But here's what's interesting. The French atheist Voltaire, in hearing that, ridiculed Sir Isaac Newton and the bible saying oh, everybody knows that if you went over 25 miles an hour you'd burn up. By the way, Sir Isaac Newton, he was a mathematician. He was brilliant, probably the most brilliant scientist of all times. In putting the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation together believed that the final judgment of God and the rule and reign of the saints in the kingdom would happen somewhere between the year 2000 and 2050. Somewhere in that frame, based upon what he was uncovering in Daniel.

So verse 10, let's finish it off. "Many shall be purified, made white, and refined. But the wicked shall do wickedly. None of the wicked shall understand but the wise shall understand. And from that time the daily sacrifice is taken away." That's the abomination of desolation. And the abomination of desolation is set up. There shall be 1,290 days. Blessed it is he who waits and comes to the 1,335 days. Now we've seen this before. Time times and a half a time. We've seen the term three and 1/2 years. We have noticed the term in Revelation 1,260 days or three and 1/2 years. That is the ministry of the two witnesses. And that's the time the Jews are protected by God over in [? Etam ?] or over in Petra.

So we have this term of three and 1/2 years and now it's one thousand, two hundred and not 60 days, but 290 days. An extra month is put in there. And we wonder what for. Well, keep in mind that when Jesus comes back there's a whole lot of stuff that's going to go on. And not only that 30 days, but then the extra days, the 1,335 days. Blessed is he who makes it all the way to the end. Because when Jesus comes back, all that happened at Armageddon will be mopped up. The new government for the kingdom will be set up where we rule and reign in righteousness with Christ. The temple according to those last chapters of Ezekiel will be built. And the nations, Matthew 25, will be judged. So probably those things are occurring during that time period. But make it to the end, great. You're blessed. You're happy. You're stoked.

But you, Daniel that is, go your way till the end. For you shall rest and will arise to your inheritance at the end of days. Daniel, you're 85, buddy. Go take a nap. You'll be up again. And your reward will be with you. Only 8% of world history, a time of peace. I applaud those who win peace prizes and negotiate in the Middle East for peace. I really do. But I'm not an optimist when it comes to man's endeavor to bring peace because the history shows for every 13 years of war, there's only been one year of peace.

Rather, my eyes are fixed on heaven. I echo what John said, even so, come quickly lord Jesus. And I believe with Sir Isaac Newton and other bible believing Christians the lord's coming is at hand. It's coming soon. Very soon. You are tempted as am I to be distressed at the wars that you see around you. Don't be. During the Civil War when there was another conflict between North and South and boys were marching off to war, Julia Ward Howe was so disgusted by the fact that her country was in a civil war that she decided the only solution is to put her sights to the future and to the coming of Christ. And her thought was Revelation 19, when Jesus comes to rule and reign in righteousness. And she wrote that beautiful song, "Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the lord. He has trampled out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored. He has loosed the fateful lightning of that terrible, swift sword. His truth is marching on."

And how we thank God for the truth, the veracity of his word. And the more we get into it and the more we apply it, the stronger we'll be. We set our sights higher. Let's pray. Our heavenly father, what a privilege it has been to gather these Sunday nights, as a flock, as a church. Thank you for again the legacy of Calvary Chapel built upon the infallible inerrant word of God. Thank you for the knowledge, the insight, and more than that the inspiration to live our lives that we have gleaned from these studies. Thank you for your holy spirit. And thank you, lord as we see these fulfilled prophecies, it moves us to grab a hold of the handle of faith rather than anxiety. You have done what you promised and we know that those future promises you're going to do. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Shall we stand? Again, I like it in Ezekiel where God said, I said it, and I will do it. And he has said it. And surely up to this point, he has done it. And every reason to believe that those prophecies that have not yet come to pass will surely come to pass just as accurately as those that have already been fulfilled. And we already have the testimony of history to the fulfillment of those prophecies.

Appreciate the study tonight and being able to see how God spoke in advance as he said that he is God. He can tell you the end from the beginning. And he has done that. He has told us the end from the beginning. We know how the story ends. And that's the important thing. The ultimate victory belongs to our lord.

The pastors are down at the front this evening again to pray for you and for your needs. As soon as we are dismissed, if you want to come on down and have them pray for you, whatever the need might be in your life tonight. God is able to meet that need. And so we would encourage you to give God the opportunity to do that work in your life that he would like to do just because he loves you and would love to display his love for you.

So seek the lord, open your heart to him, and spend some time with him in prayer down here at the front tonight after we are dismissed. (SINGING) Soon and very soon, we are going to see the king. Soon and very soon we are going to see the king. Soon and very soon we are going to see the king. Hallelujah. Hallelujah. We're going to see the king. No more dying there. We are going to see the king. No more dying there. We are going to see the king. No more dying there. We are going to see the king. Hallelujah. Hallelujah. We're going to see the king. Hallelujah Hallelujah. We're going to see the king.

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