How would you read Daniel?

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Herald

Administrator
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Although a prophet, I find Daniel not fitting in the mold of the other prophets. Daniel's narratives paint a picture of God's sovereignty in the midst of trial. I don't find an pre-exilic or exilic motif. Daniel is not proclaiming impending judgment as do other prophetic writers. The book seems set apart from the other prophets in a sense. I'm waiting for two books to come in that I ordered last week. Any insights from my PB brethren?
 

Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
Daniel certainly has complexity, although I don't know what you might be thinking of as a particular prophetic mold. He is not doing much "preaching" to the nation of Israel, in terms of the Law. However, he IS giving the word of the Lord in the early portions after the manner of Moses' narratives, and the prophetic recorders of Israel's history. And in the latter portions, he is describing the coming Messianic kingdom--one which will supercede all the empires of the world. God is Judge, not man, and this theme is developed in the narrative portions.

God is sovereign. He's sovereign even in the midst of terrible calamity, even when it seems he has cast off faithless Israel, and his promises (it appears) were conditional, and the people have not kept those conditions. In Daniel 9, Daniel prays an agonized prayer, because the time for deliverance (70 years) has come, but repentance has not happened. God's answer comes in part at the end of that chapter, one that tells him there remains a set time until Messiah comes, so he should not lose heart.

A more detailed answer comes in the long vision that takes up the greater part of the last three chapters. The Days of Indignation will not be finished by the captivity. Repentance by the people is fleeting or nonexistent. Nevertheless, a remnant of the people will return home. They will struggle along, while earthly powers oblivious to God's reign sweep back and forth over the people huddled in their land. But still unrepentant.

What will solve this problem? Wat will bring the Days of Indignation to an end? Only Messiah himself can bring an end. When he arrives, then will come the Days of Grace.
 

Pilgrim Standard

Puritan Board Sophomore
Daniel certainly has complexity, although I don't know what you might be thinking of as a particular prophetic mold. He is not doing much "preaching" to the nation of Israel, in terms of the Law. However, he IS giving the word of the Lord in the early portions after the manner of Moses' narratives, and the prophetic recorders of Israel's history. And in the latter portions, he is describing the coming Messianic kingdom--one which will supercede all the empires of the world. God is Judge, not man, and this theme is developed in the narrative portions.

God is sovereign. He's sovereign even in the midst of terrible calamity, even when it seems he has cast off faithless Israel, and his promises (it appears) were conditional, and the people have not kept those conditions. In Daniel 9, Daniel prays an agonized prayer, because the time for deliverance (70 years) has come, but repentance has not happened. God's answer comes in part at the end of that chapter, one that tells him there remains a set time until Messiah comes, so he should not lose heart.

A more detailed answer comes in the long vision that takes up the greater part of the last three chapters. The Days of Indignation will not be finished by the captivity. Repentance by the people is fleeting or nonexistent. Nevertheless, a remnant of the people will return home. They will struggle along, while earthly powers oblivious to God's reign sweep back and forth over the people huddled in their land. But still unrepentant.

What will solve this problem? Wat will bring the Days of Indignation to an end? Only Messiah himself can bring an end. When he arrives, then will come the Days of Grace.

Well said! Read the book with your eyes on Christ! :2cents:
 

Southern Presbyterian

Puritan Board Doctor
Daniel certainly has complexity, although I don't know what you might be thinking of as a particular prophetic mold. He is not doing much "preaching" to the nation of Israel, in terms of the Law. However, he IS giving the word of the Lord in the early portions after the manner of Moses' narratives, and the prophetic recorders of Israel's history. And in the latter portions, he is describing the coming Messianic kingdom--one which will supercede all the empires of the world. God is Judge, not man, and this theme is developed in the narrative portions.

God is sovereign. He's sovereign even in the midst of terrible calamity, even when it seems he has cast off faithless Israel, and his promises (it appears) were conditional, and the people have not kept those conditions. In Daniel 9, Daniel prays an agonized prayer, because the time for deliverance (70 years) has come, but repentance has not happened. God's answer comes in part at the end of that chapter, one that tells him there remains a set time until Messiah comes, so he should not lose heart.

A more detailed answer comes in the long vision that takes up the greater part of the last three chapters. The Days of Indignation will not be finished by the captivity. Repentance by the people is fleeting or nonexistent. Nevertheless, a remnant of the people will return home. They will struggle along, while earthly powers oblivious to God's reign sweep back and forth over the people huddled in their land. But still unrepentant.

What will solve this problem? Wat will bring the Days of Indignation to an end? Only Messiah himself can bring an end. When he arrives, then will come the Days of Grace.

:up:

I've not seen or heard a better short explanation of the book of Daniel. Thanks Brother Bruce. I'm filing this one away for future reference.
 

Herald

Administrator
Staff member
I'm waiting for two books to come in that I ordered last week.

Care to share which ones?

"Daniel" by Iain M. Duguid

"Daniel" by Edward J. Young

These books are complimentary. Duguid's commentary is more of a sermon than a verse by verse commentary. Young is just the opposite. He gets into the meat and taters. Combined they give a solid pastoral and exegetical view of the book of Daniel.
 

bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
Daniel in a nutshell: The Book of Daniel demonstrates that God is sovereign over foreign nations and cultures, and that he will be glorified by them, just as he is over the nation of Israel.

The Book of Ruth tells much the same story.
 

holyfool33

Puritan Board Freshman
Dispensationaly :lol: but seriously I would read it as a prophetic book much like how Issiah has elements of history but it is a book of prophecy.
 

Herald

Administrator
Staff member
Actually, Daniel is part of the ketuvim. It is not considered part of the prophets.
 

MW

Puritanboard Amanuensis
I've found it helps to read Daniel left to right in English and right to left in Hebrew. :)
 

Grymir

Puritan Board Graduate
I'd read Daniel in the King James. What a shameless plug. :p Actually in my foray through the bible, Daniel was easy because alot of it is straight historical facts written down, followed by a prophecy that traces history, and then the end stuff. Reading the world's history helped me the most. The historical stuff in Daniel and his interaction with the people is what I found to be the most fascinating, esp when archaeological stuff is collaborating the stories in it. The prophetic stuff starts to make more sense when you read the other prophetic books.
 

Herald

Administrator
Staff member
I am most decidedly a 6th century B.C. guy (for when Daniel was written), not a Maccabean advocate.
 

bond-servant

Puritan Board Sophomore
<snip> The prophetic stuff starts to make more sense when you read the other prophetic books.

Absolutely. As you read the prophetic chapters, you will find some details of Revelation filled in. The history is fascinating as much of it was fulfilled to the very smallest detail!
 

Leslie

Puritan Board Junior
How do theologians with different eschatologies view the "king of the north" and "king of the south" prophecies? Were these literally fulfilled in the past and if so, when? Or are they also connected to Revelation end times?
 

Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
My position falls in line, generally with EJ Young and Calvin.

The time in view is mainly the era between the testaments, post-exilic Judah is the geographical focus. I don't believe there is much overlap in Daniel's visions and Revelation, particularly whatever is interadvential and eschatological in Revelation. Daniel is interested in the Messiah's initial coming and setting up his kingdom, and what is happening until then from his standpoint. Since I don't believe in a future kingdom-set-up from our present day, but that Christ has already brought his kingdom in, I find Daniel to be fully explicated by what has already happened in Christ.

The reason that "king of north/south" is so "generic, and in our view refers to several different kings and even kingdoms is that the Bible isn't so concerned with WHO they are, but that they are "players" in the world, while God's people huddle in their tiny hill-country, insignificant and just... well... in the way of these grand armies and empirical designs.

One of the most interesting things to me is that God tells Daniel that when the time comes that the Jews throw in their lot again with one of these powers, they stop being ignored, and simply buffeted by the winds and vicissitudes of war and politics, and become objects of persecution by the kings to whom they joined themselves. Strong irony, and in fact the very thing that happened when Judah allied with the Seleucids.
 

shackleton

Puritan Board Junior
Should Revelation be interpreted in light of Daniel or vice verse? What of the dreaded 70 weeks that is the "lost" 70th week?
 
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