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17 ‘These large beasts, which are four in number, represent four kings who will arise from the earth. 18 The holy ones[a] of the Most High will receive the kingdom and will take possession of the kingdom forever and ever.’

19 “Then I wanted to know the meaning[b] of the fourth beast, which was different from all the others. It was very dreadful, with two rows of iron teeth and bronze claws, and it devoured, crushed, and trampled anything that was left with its feet.

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  1. Daniel 7:18 sn The expression holy ones is either a reference to angels, to human beings devoted to God, or to both. The context is an earthly kingdom the holy ones will possess, and man was appointed to rule the earth (Gen 1:28). The holy ones are defeated and harassed by an earthly ruler in 7:21, 25, and human rulers cannot defeat and harass angels. So the holy ones are almost certainly human beings devoted to God.
  2. Daniel 7:19 tn Aram “to make certain.”