Thursday, October 23, 2008

Prophetic Times To The End ~ Part One

DANIEL 7:1-9

Daniels vision of the Four Beasts:

Dan. 7:1 Daniel sees in a dream, visions in his mind as he lay in bed; his summary is as follows:

Dan. 7:2 Daniel in his night vision sees God’s providential actions in the affairs of men through angels. “Winds” biblically referring to angels and “sea” biblically referring to multitudes of populace, or men of the nations, and the prince of earth also known as “Satan” influences them in rule of the peoples of the nations. Scripture also tells us that when we see a reference to the "four winds of heaven", we see that God the Father is providentially setting up and removing kingdoms and or kings on the earth to propel his divine plan for man on earth.
(Ref: Jer. 23:19; 49:36; 51:1; Zech. 6:1-6; 7:14; Rev 7:1-3)

Dan. 7:3 In Daniels vision he sees four great beasts emerging from the agitated “sea“. “The Mediterranean world of that day“. Each were four kingdoms or dominions different from each other, that will rule over the nations in their appointed time.

Dan. 7:4 Daniel sees the first world empire, “Babylon“. This empire lasts for 87 years (BC 626-539). Daniel sees the image of a lion that had wings of an eagle; which represents power and strength with great swiftness. Daniel sees the wings plucked and lifted up from the ground and the beast stood on two feet like a man and was given a human mind, which suggests that the animal lost its beastly nature. He shows compassion for the rest of mankind. (Ref. Dan. 2:37-38) Nebuchadnezzer’s rule was viewed as a world empire, in which he ruled over all mankind as well as over all beasts an birds of the air. At the time of creation the right to rule over the earth was given man who was to have dominion over it, and all the creatures in it. (Ref. Gen. 1:26) Here Nebachadnezzar by “divine appointment” was helping fulfill what God had planned for man, even though man had no idea that God was manipulating the circumstances around him.

Dan. 7:5 Daniel sees the second world empire rise out of the “sea” of the populace of the Mediterranean world, Medo-Persia. This empire lasts over 200 years (BC 539-330). Daniel sees the image of like a bear and it raises up on one side suggesting that Persia dominates in the empire, and three ribs in its mouth between its teeth; Three kingdoms of which will be consumed by Medo-Persia. Daniel say’s, they said, to it, “arise“, devour much meat! The bear, an animal of formidable strength. (Ref. 1 Sam. 17:34; Amos 5:19; Hosea 13:8). This empire operates by “divine appointment” as Daniel points out when stating “They said to it;” (a reference to the Trinity) this was a “divine appointment “and the appointment was to “arise” the objective was to devour other kingdoms, extending its territory into a vast empire, the bear was fulfilling God’s purpose for the nations. These nations conquered by the Medes and Persians were Babylon, Lydia, and Egypt at the appointed times.

Dan. 7:6 Daniel sees the third world empire rise out of the “sea” of the populace of the Mediterranean world. “Greece“. This empire lasts approximately 267 years (BC 330-63).( Not all of this ruler ship was under Alexander the Great). Daniel sees the image of like a leopard with four wings of a bird on its back; the beasts also had four heads, and dominion ( “divine appointment“) was given to it. The leopard, an animal noted for its swiftness, (Ref. Hab. 1:8), cunning, and agility (Ref. Jer. 5:6;Hosea 13:7) Alexander conquered the entire Medo-Persia empire with great speed between 334-330 BC; Daniel shows us this with the image of the leopard with wings for swiftness with extra natural capacity to conquer swiftly ( remember he had “divine appointment“). Daniels beast with four heads shows us that Alexander’s empire shortly after his death at age 32 is divided up by four of his leading generals and they rule their appointed time. ( we will see a little later that a “little horn” will arise out of this empire ). ( “Hint” Ref. Dan. 8:9 )

Dan. 7:7 Daniel sees the fourth world empire arise, “Rome“. This empire formally runs 539 years. From BC 63 - AD 476 ( we should note that during this time our Lord and savior was born of a Virgin, A.D. 3 ). Daniels vision of the fourth beast, he says dreadful and terrifying and extremely strong; it has large Iron teeth. Daniel says it devoured and crushed and trampled down the remainder with its feet; ( by “divine appointment” as well ) Daniel describes the Roman empire destroying the established dominion in place at that time( this would be the “little horn” I eluted to above ). Then the Roman empire trampled underfoot whatever was left. Rome in its cruel conquest swallowed up the lands and peoples that had been parts of the three previous empires ( Babylon, Medo-Persia, and Greece ) and assimilated those lands and peoples into itself. ( This is the mixture of Iron and Clay and ten toes, the “clay” tells us that a weakness comes into the empire, all of these different peoples could not be completely united the empire remained un-united always rebellious against Rome). Daniel goes on to say that this beast ( influenced by Satan )was different from those that were before it, and that it had ten horns.

Dan. 7:8 Daniel sees the final form of the fourth world empire; the ten kings and the little horn ( a second little horn not the same one mentioned above ). Daniel says while he was studying the horns yet another horn, a little one, came up among them, and three of the first horns were pulled out by the roots before it; Daniel goes on to say that this horn or Beast possessed eyes like eyes of a man, and a mouth uttering great things(anti-christ). The Roman Empire was characterized by division (because of the mixture of clay a division in time of 10 kingdoms will result ), which meant deterioration. It was partly strong and partly brittle. Daniel continues with, that out of the 10 horns came a little one and in its growth it was able to uproot three of the existing horns. We need to understand that in the 5th century AD the hordes from the north conquered the Roman empire of that day, they did not unite to form an empire. Some of those nations (10) and others stemming from them have continued till the present day. Therefore the present age is the 10-horned era of the fourth beast. Sometime after the rise of the 10 horns; (no clue was given to Daniel as to how much later in time the little horn will appear vs. 8) Daniel says another king (the little horn) will arise. When this king arises to power he will bring 3 of the 10 nations under his authority and power ( has not happened yet, as the Church age is still running its course under the direction of Jesus Christ with the comforter the Holy Spirit ). Daniel let us know the little horn is noted for his intelligence (it has eyes of a man) and it blasphemous claims (it has a mouth that spoke great things against God the Father).

Dan. 7:9 Daniels vision leads him to seeing thrones being set up, and Daniel sees God the Father take His seat on the Throne. Daniel also lets us know that this is the Sovereign God who exercises control over men and nations. God’s white clothing and hair speak of His Holiness. Daniel describes the throne chariot of God borne by cherubim. (Ref. Ezk. 1: 4-28). Daniel describes as did Ezekiel that God looked like glowing metal and fire. They could only see His form as God’s glory is so bright. Both Daniel and Ezekiel describe in the terms of “appearance” and “Likeness“, that neither had seen God directly. That would have caused immediate death. (Ref Ex. 33: 18-23; John 1:1).