This month we are looking at The Book of Daniel verse-by-verse. In the previous post, we covered Daniel 10. Here is the summary:
Daniel described in detail the events that led to him receiving the final installment of his continual vision concerning God's people and God's city.
Everything about this description implied the message was POWERFUL and the resistance to this message was POWERFUL.
Today, we will look at a what the angel had to say about the vision...
"1 And as for me, in the first year of Darius the Mede, I stood up to confirm and strengthen him."
The angel was talking...another story structure!
The angel ended the previous chapter saying that he and Michael (Daniel's prince!) were the only two working for Daniel. So, the angel was stating that he supported Michael in the first year of Darius...which was the same time Daniel received the GREATEST PROPHECY recorded in the Bible. It sounded like A LOT happened in the spiritual realm during Darius' first year!
Before we find out what the angel said, let's review the continual vision Daniel had been having. Here were the kings in order:
2. Darius and Cyrus
3. Alexander the Great
4. Antiochus Epiphanes
This explanation from the angel was taking place after #1 (Nebuchadnezzar) and during #2: Darius and Cyrus.
"2 And now will I show thee the truth. Behold, there shall stand up yet three kings in Persia; and the fourth shall be far richer than they all: and when he is waxed strong through his riches, he shall stir up all against the realm of Greece.
3 And a mighty king shall stand up, that shall rule with great dominion, and do according to his will.
4 And when he shall stand up, his kingdom shall be broken, and shall be divided toward the four winds of heaven, but not to his posterity, nor according to his dominion wherewith he ruled; for his kingdom shall be plucked up, even for others besides these."
Clearly this was #3. Alexander the Great. His kingdom was divided into four parts...
1) Seleucus I - Syria
2) Cassander - Macedonia (Greece).
3) Lysimachus - Thracia (between Greece and Turkey).
4) Ptolemy I - Egypt.
"5 And the king of the south shall be strong, and one of his princes; and he shall be strong above him, and have dominion; his dominion shall be a great dominion."
It looked like this vision was giving more explanation concerning the time between #3 and #4...the rest of this post is essentially a history lesson.
The king of the south was Ptolemy I (Egypt). His "prince" that was stronger was Seleucus who took over Syria (north). (Remember, Antiochus Epiphanes came from the Seleucus' portion of Alexander's empire.)
"6 And at the end of years they shall join themselves together; and the daughter of the king of the south shall come to the king of the north to make an agreement: but she shall not retain the strength of her arm; neither shall he stand, nor his arm; but she shall be given up, and they that brought her, and he that begat her, and he that strengthened her in those times."
Years later, the king of the south was Ptolemy II Philadelphus. His daughter was Berenice II. At this time, the king of the north was Antiochus II Theos.
Two years after the marriage, Berenice's father (Ptolemy Philadelphus) died. Antiochus II Theos restored Laodice (former wife) and put away Berenice. Antiochus II Theos was then poisoned by Laodice. Berenice fled with her children to Daphne where she was killed.
"7 But out of a shoot from her roots shall one stand up in his place, who shall come unto the army, and shall enter into the fortress of the king of the north, and shall deal against them, and shall prevail.
8 And also their gods, with their molten images, and with their goodly vessels of silver and of gold, shall he carry captive into Egypt; and he shall refrain some years from the king of the north."
Berenice's brother, Ptolemy III Euregetes was now the king of the south and he came with an army. The king of the north was now Seleucus II Kallinikos, son of Laodice. He was defeated in Egypt later. Seleucus II lost to Ptolemy III...who put Seleucus' mother, Laodice, to death.
"9 And he shall come into the realm of the king of the south, but he shall return into his own land."
"He" in this verse was the king of the north and was Seleucus II, son of the deceased Laodice. Seleucus II sought revenge for Ptolemy III killing his mother.
According to Gill's commentary: "Justin says that he fitted out a great fleet, which was destroyed by a violent storm; and after this he raised a great army to recover his dominion, but was defeated by Ptolemy, and fled in great terror and trembling to Antioch".
"10 And his sons shall war, and shall assemble a multitude of great forces, which shall come on, and overflow, and pass through; and they shall return and war, even to his fortress."
Seleucus III Ceraunus and Antiochus III the Great were the sons of the king of the north.
"11 And the king of the south shall be moved with anger, and shall come forth and fight with him, even with the king of the north; and he shall set forth a great multitude, and the multitude shall be given into his hand.
12 And the multitude shall be lifted up, and his heart shall be exalted; and he shall cast down tens of thousands, but he shall not prevail."
The king of the south was Ptolemy IV Philopator. The king of the north was Antiochus III, the Great. Ptolemy IV defeated the much larger army of Antiochus III at the Battle of Raphia in 217 BC.
"13 And the king of the north shall return, and shall set forth a multitude greater than the former; and he shall come on at the end of the times, even of years, with a great army and with much substance."
The king of the north was still Antiochus III. The king of the south was Ptolemy V Epiphanes. Antiochus III gave his daughter Cleopatra I to Ptolemy V, in hopes of permanent influence in Egypt.
"14 And in those times there shall many stand up against the king of the south: also the children of the violent among thy people shall lift themselves up to establish the vision; but they shall fall."
At this time, many of the Egyptians began rebelling against the ruling Grecian family and began rioting and defying them. The "vision" that was established was from Daniel 8 and Daniel 9.
The first fourteen verses of Daniel 11 covered the time of Alexander the Great up until Antiochus Epiphanes.
God could NOW give more details about this time period because the first two steps of the continual vision had occurred: Nebuchadnezzar and Darius/Cyrus. God knew more of the CAUSES and could explain the EFFECTS.
For more explanation on how prophecy works, please look at the following links:
Daniel was getting a more detailed explanation of the events between #3. Alexander the Great and #4. Antiochus Epiphanes.
Tomorrow, we will cover #4. Antiochus Epiphanes.