Page images

upon the head of the beast, and is only allowed to prosper until he reaches a certain given point of time, when his purposes will come to naught, and his dominion will be taken away, to be consumed and destroyed even to the end. And although he claims to be a God, yet his subserviency to another power is seen in that he is obliged to honor a strange god with silver, gold, and precious stones and pleasant things, even the king of fierce countenance and understanding dark sentences; who comes with a well-appointed system of idolatry which the king of Israel will be compelled to honor.

But when this king that does according to his will has reached the end of his term of warring against the saints of the Most High, and the time of the end has come, then the angel says that the king of the south shall push at him, and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots and with many ships, and he shall enter into the countries and shall overflow and pass over. He shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown.

Edom, Moab and Ammon Plucked Up

"But these three, Edom, Moab, and Ammon, shall escape out of his hand." These are the three horns that are plucked up by the king of Israel (Dan. 7:8) even after he has been overflown by the king of the north who has swept over these countries like a flood by his victorious armies, and gone down to the countries of Ethiopia, Libya, and Egypt, for it is said, "He shall stretch forth his hand also upon the countries, and the land of Egypt shall not escape. But he shall have power over the treasures of gold and silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt, and the Libyans and the Ethiopians shall be at his steps."

Rebellion in the Rear

When the victorious king of the north has swept over the countries and gone down into the countries southwest from the land of Israel, Moab, Ammon, and Edom; and when the king of Israel dares to rebel against him by dealing treacherously and by plucking up by the roots, that is by detaching from his sovereignty the kingdoms of Edom, Moab, and Ammon; and when the news of these things reaches the ears of this mighty conqueror who has just spoiled and subdued Egypt and slain the Ethiopian head to death, insomuch that the Libyans and Ethiopians come marching in the ranks of his victorious army, then he comes forth now with great fury to exterminate and destroy those who have been bold enough to rebel against him, as it is said (11:44), "But tidings out of the north and out of the east shall trouble him; therefore he shall go forth with great fury, to destroy and utterly to make away many."

But this mighty king of the north knows not the thoughts and purposes of the Lord God of Israel, for the Lord has said long ago, by the prophet Isaiah (14:24-25) as follows, "The Lord hath sworn saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass, and as I have purposed, so shall it stand, that I will break the Assyrian in my land, and upon my mountains tread him under foot. Then shall his yoke depart from off them, and his burden from off their shoulders "— that is, from off the shoulders of them that are escaped

of the house of Israel.1

And to this agree the words of the angel to Daniel, saying (verse 45), "And 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."

Thus we have in this famous prophecy of what shall befall Daniel's people in the latter days, an account of a continuous and connected series of national events, beginning with the latter day Medo-Persian empire, and in the latter day doings of the king of Israel and Judah in connection with the kings of the north and the kings of the south, and ending with the overthrow of the king of the north, or the Assyrian, with all his hosts upon the mountains of Israel. And although there has been a partial fulfillment of some portions of this prophecy in the past, as a shadow or earnest of what was and still is to come, that fact does by no means detract or take from the prophecy as it applies to the future. Moreover, this prophecy presents chiefly the outlines of the great things that are to be witnessed in those times, but the minutia will be found in other Scriptures, and especially in the Book of the Revelation.


In the first verse of chapter 12, which is a continuance of the same vision and prophecy, we read, "And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people, and there shall be a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation, even to that same time. And at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book." Now for kings and princes to stand up, as contained in this prophecy, means to stand up in battle and to wage war and fight, as it is said (11: 14), "And in those times there shall many stand up against the king of the south, also the robbers of thy people shall exalt themselves to establish the vision, but they shall fall," and again (verse 20), "Then shall stand up in his estate a raiser of taxes," and again (verse 21), “And in his estate shall stand up a vile person."

Thus to stand up, as it is here said, is to stand up as a prince to rule and to wage war and to contend in battle. This is what is signified by the standing up of Michael. But at what point of time and during what period does Michael stand up for Daniel's people, which in this case will be for the saints, the residue of Israel? We reply, It will be during the time of trouble which commences with the taking away of the daily sacrifice and the placing of the abomination of desolation in the Temple, and continues for a time, times and half a time, and ends with the casting out of the king of Israel, and the cutting down of his great power and authority for making war upon the saints. The saints are delivered into the hand of the little horn for fortytwo months, and were it not that Michael stands up for them and renders them "a little help" (Dan. 11:34) there is no doubt that the righteous would be utterly exterminated out of the land. Jesus said, "Except those days be shortened, there should no flesh be saved, but for the elects' sake, those days shall be shortened" (Matt. 24: 22).

1 That this is a future event, see the beginning of the chapter, which locates it at the time when the twelve tribes of Israel will be living in their own land once more. See also verse 26.

“And at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book." That is, when Michael shall have waged war against, and restrained the king that does according to his will until his term has run out and Michael has prevailed and taken away his great power and authority, then the saints that have been under his care will be delivered, every one that is written in the book, or as the Lord speaks by the hand of Isaiah, saying, "And it shall come to pass that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem." These are the ones who are written in the book to live, who are spared in the day of the Lord's anger, and live in the flesh when these troubles are past, and who form the nucleus of a new nation, who are to flourish in the earth for a thousand years in great peace and prosperity. The standing up of Michael, and the power against whom he contends in battle we will speak of more fully when we come to treat of the things contained in the twelfth chapter of the Book of the Revelation.


(Dan. 12: 2) "And many that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt." It should be observed in this passage that it is not said that "all" that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, but that "many" shall awake, and of the many that awake, part of them awake to everlasting life, and the remainder to shame and everlasting contempt. The shame is the feeling that arises in themselves as they rise clothed in their own filthy garments, and not in the clean white garments of salvation; while the righteous rise clothed with the spotless robes of righteousness. Contempt is the feeling that the righteous will have for them. These great truths are well illustrated by Jesus in the parable of the net, to which the kingdom of heaven is likened. A net cast into the sea may gather many fish, and what it gathers are drawn ashore, consisting of two kinds, good and bad; the good are gathered into vessels, and the bad are cast away.

The law divided fish into two kinds, clean and unclean, and they represent two classes of people in the body of Christ, the clean and the unclean. Fish without scales, such as eels, represent the wicked, a slippery, slimy, wriggling class of people who, after knowing the way of righteousness, turn again, like washed hogs to their wallowing in the mire,- a hypocritical class who cover up their sins, lie, and deceive, and screen, and justify themselves. These are to be cast away in the judgment, while fish with scales are clean fish and good for food, and they represent the righteous who are clean and fit for their master's use.

And as in fishing with a net, but a very small portion of all the fishes that swim in the sea are caught therein, and as the fish which are not compassed in the net, and are therefore not drawn ashore die and disappear in the sea and are never seen or heard of, so also with the great mass of the children of men, who have never heard the Gospel, or those who have heard it but never obeyed it. All these live and die in the great sea of nations, and return to their native dust and will never rise or appear any more. These all die in Adam. A man to rise again must believe and obey the Gospel and die in

Christ, and even then he will rise to die the second death (from which there is no resurrection) unless he abide faithful to the end, as Paul says, “Ye are made partakers of Christ, if ye hold fast the beginning of your confidence steadfast to the end "; and again he says, "Ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you unless ye have believed in vain."

The whole human family is in Adam by nature, and we all sinned in him, and the judge of all the earth pronounced sentence in Eden upon Adam, and through him upon all his posterity, saying, "Dust thou art, and unto dust. shalt thou return," and there they are left, except those in Christ, and there are none in Christ by nature; there is none in Christ except those who have believed the Gospel and rendered the obedience of faith, and so have entered into Christ.

Philosophers, therefore, and wise men in the world, may disparage and set at nought the Holy Scriptures, and speculate as much as they please about death and the sentence of death as decreed in Eden, but it will not help them; they may invent theories of immortality and speak learnedly of the natural immortality of human souls, and argue that the dead are alive and that the dead know more than the living, but it is written that the dead know not anything. When these philosophers and their disciples die, therefore, their dreams die with them so far as they are concerned, and they go back again to whence they were taken. Their names by nature are written in the earth, and when they die their mother earth claims them and gives them up no more. (Verse 3) "And they that be wise (or teachers, as the margin hath it), shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and they that turn many to righteousness, as the stars forever and ever." And in the next passage we are told that many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased. In these sayings we have the comforting assurance that although iniquity will abound in Israel in the latter days to a marvelous extent, yet grace will also abound and many will be instructed in the right ways of the Lord, by good and wise men like the apostles and prophets of old, men whom the Lord will raise up and qualify by the gifts of the Holy Spirit and whom he will uphold and sustain in the face of the enemy and the avenger until their goodly works are manifest and finished, even as it was with the Son of man himself. The enemy had no power over him till his good works were done, and none then, except what was given them from above.

Therefore we may understand that there will be churches established in Jerusalem and in the cities of Israel and Judah in those troublous times, consisting of many distinguished and faithful men, whom we are assured will love not their lives unto the death; and while many will fall by the sword, by flame, by captivity and spoil 1260 days, yet it is testified that the people that do know their God shall be strong and do exploits. They will constitute a power in the land to resist the children of wickedness, until iniquity has an end and judgment is given to the saints of the Most High, and the time comes that the saints possess the kingdom.


(Verses 5, 6, 7) "Then I, Daniel, looked and behold there stood other two, the one on this side of the bank of the river, and the other on that side

of the bank of the river; and one said to the man clothed in linen which was upon the waters of the river, How long shall it be to the end of these wonders? And I heard the man clothed with linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven and sware by him that liveth for ever, that it shall be for a time, times and a half, and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished."

The scene laid in this part of the vision is very important and very impressive. Three angels appear at this point, one standing upon the bank on each side of the river, while the angel clothed in linen who was revealing the things contained in the vision to Daniel stood above the waters of the river; and one asked this person a question, saying, "How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?" Daniel heard the answer to this question, for he says, "And I heard the man clothed in linen which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth forever, that it shall be for a time, times, and a half."

The wonders referred to, therefore, in this question and the answer which is confirmed by an oath, are the marvelous things that transpire during the continuance of this famous period of three years and a half,- one thousand, two hundred and three score days,- forty-two months. This is the length of the time that the little horn makes war upon the saints of the Most High, who is also called the king that does according to his will, and who prospers until the indignation against God's holy people is accomplished.

These wonders, we say, transpire during a period of three years and a half, and consist, first, of the measures that the king of Israel and Assyria take in concert to remove and suppress the daily sacrifice, and to set up in its place their shameful idolatrous worship, called the abomination of desolation; and after that, the military measures that they adopt to compel all to recognize and to comply with these abominations, and fall down and worship themselves, and the gods which they set up. And during this period many of the saints will confirm their faith with their blood, and will fall by the hand of the enemy and the avenger.

These are some of the wonders that will be seen in the land of Israel in those days. Again the two witnesses will prophesy a thousand, two hundred and three score days, clothed in sackcloth, which is at the same time that the Little Horn makes war upon the saints; and while these two witnesses, two men like Moses and Aaron, will be detested and hated by that profane and wicked prince of Israel and by the Assyrian, or the beast that sustains and carries him, yet they will not be able to restrain nor put down these two men, until their work is finished, and some of the wonders of these notable days will consist in the many miracles that these witnesses will be empowered to do in calling for the plagues that are to be poured out upon mystical Egypt (the rebellious house of Israel), after the manner and type in which Moses and Aaron, by the word of the Lord, called for the plagues upon ancient Egypt, even upon Pharaoh and all his people, and which are spoken of in the eleventh chapter of the Revelation as follows: "These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth. And if any man wili hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth

« PreviousContinue »