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Daniel 10-12 New Living Translation (NLT)

Daniel’s Vision of a Messenger

10 In the third year of the reign of King Cyrus of Persia,[a] Daniel (also known as Belteshazzar) had another vision. He understood that the vision concerned events certain to happen in the future—times of war and great hardship.

When this vision came to me, I, Daniel, had been in mourning for three whole weeks. All that time I had eaten no rich food. No meat or wine crossed my lips, and I used no fragrant lotions until those three weeks had passed.

On April 23,[b] as I was standing on the bank of the great Tigris River, I looked up and saw a man dressed in linen clothing, with a belt of pure gold around his waist. His body looked like a precious gem. His face flashed like lightning, and his eyes flamed like torches. His arms and feet shone like polished bronze, and his voice roared like a vast multitude of people.

Only I, Daniel, saw this vision. The men with me saw nothing, but they were suddenly terrified and ran away to hide. So I was left there all alone to see this amazing vision. My strength left me, my face grew deathly pale, and I felt very weak. Then I heard the man speak, and when I heard the sound of his voice, I fainted and lay there with my face to the ground.

10 Just then a hand touched me and lifted me, still trembling, to my hands and knees. 11 And the man said to me, “Daniel, you are very precious to God, so listen carefully to what I have to say to you. Stand up, for I have been sent to you.” When he said this to me, I stood up, still trembling.

12 Then he said, “Don’t be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day you began to pray for understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your request has been heard in heaven. I have come in answer to your prayer. 13 But for twenty-one days the spirit prince[c] of the kingdom of Persia blocked my way. Then Michael, one of the archangels,[d] came to help me, and I left him there with the spirit prince of the kingdom of Persia.[e] 14 Now I am here to explain what will happen to your people in the future, for this vision concerns a time yet to come.”

15 While he was speaking to me, I looked down at the ground, unable to say a word. 16 Then the one who looked like a man[f] touched my lips, and I opened my mouth and began to speak. I said to the one standing in front of me, “I am filled with anguish because of the vision I have seen, my lord, and I am very weak. 17 How can someone like me, your servant, talk to you, my lord? My strength is gone, and I can hardly breathe.”

18 Then the one who looked like a man touched me again, and I felt my strength returning. 19 “Don’t be afraid,” he said, “for you are very precious to God. Peace! Be encouraged! Be strong!”

As he spoke these words to me, I suddenly felt stronger and said to him, “Please speak to me, my lord, for you have strengthened me.”

20 He replied, “Do you know why I have come? Soon I must return to fight against the spirit prince of the kingdom of Persia, and after that the spirit prince of the kingdom of Greece[g] will come. 21 Meanwhile, I will tell you what is written in the Book of Truth. (No one helps me against these spirit princes except Michael, your spirit prince.[h] 11 I have been standing beside Michael[i] to support and strengthen him since the first year of the reign of Darius the Mede.)

Kings of the South and North

“Now then, I will reveal the truth to you. Three more Persian kings will reign, to be succeeded by a fourth, far richer than the others. He will use his wealth to stir up everyone to fight against the kingdom of Greece.[j]

“Then a mighty king will rise to power who will rule with great authority and accomplish everything he sets out to do. But at the height of his power, his kingdom will be broken apart and divided into four parts. It will not be ruled by the king’s descendants, nor will the kingdom hold the authority it once had. For his empire will be uprooted and given to others.

“The king of the south will increase in power, but one of his own officials will become more powerful than he and will rule his kingdom with great strength.

“Some years later an alliance will be formed between the king of the north and the king of the south. The daughter of the king of the south will be given in marriage to the king of the north to secure the alliance, but she will lose her influence over him, and so will her father. She will be abandoned along with her supporters. But when one of her relatives[k] becomes king of the south, he will raise an army and enter the fortress of the king of the north and defeat him. When he returns to Egypt, he will carry back their idols with him, along with priceless articles of gold and silver. For some years afterward he will leave the king of the north alone.

“Later the king of the north will invade the realm of the king of the south but will soon return to his own land. 10 However, the sons of the king of the north will assemble a mighty army that will advance like a flood and carry the battle as far as the enemy’s fortress.

11 “Then, in a rage, the king of the south will rally against the vast forces assembled by the king of the north and will defeat them. 12 After the enemy army is swept away, the king of the south will be filled with pride and will execute many thousands of his enemies. But his success will be short lived.

13 “A few years later the king of the north will return with a fully equipped army far greater than before. 14 At that time there will be a general uprising against the king of the south. Violent men among your own people will join them in fulfillment of this vision, but they will not succeed. 15 Then the king of the north will come and lay siege to a fortified city and capture it. The best troops of the south will not be able to stand in the face of the onslaught.

16 “The king of the north will march onward unopposed; none will be able to stop him. He will pause in the glorious land of Israel,[l] intent on destroying it. 17 He will make plans to come with the might of his entire kingdom and will form an alliance with the king of the south. He will give him a daughter in marriage in order to overthrow the kingdom from within, but his plan will fail.

18 “After this, he will turn his attention to the coastland and conquer many cities. But a commander from another land will put an end to his insolence and cause him to retreat in shame. 19 He will take refuge in his own fortresses but will stumble and fall and be seen no more.

20 “His successor will send out a tax collector to maintain the royal splendor. But after a very brief reign, he will die, though not from anger or in battle.

21 “The next to come to power will be a despicable man who is not in line for royal succession. He will slip in when least expected and take over the kingdom by flattery and intrigue. 22 Before him great armies will be swept away, including a covenant prince. 23 With deceitful promises, he will make various alliances. He will become strong despite having only a handful of followers. 24 Without warning he will enter the richest areas of the land. Then he will distribute among his followers the plunder and wealth of the rich—something his predecessors had never done. He will plot the overthrow of strongholds, but this will last for only a short while.

25 “Then he will stir up his courage and raise a great army against the king of the south. The king of the south will go to battle with a mighty army, but to no avail, for there will be plots against him. 26 His own household will cause his downfall. His army will be swept away, and many will be killed. 27 Seeking nothing but each other’s harm, these kings will plot against each other at the conference table, attempting to deceive each other. But it will make no difference, for the end will come at the appointed time.

28 “The king of the north will then return home with great riches. On the way he will set himself against the people of the holy covenant, doing much damage before continuing his journey.

29 “Then at the appointed time he will once again invade the south, but this time the result will be different. 30 For warships from western coastlands[m] will scare him off, and he will withdraw and return home. But he will vent his anger against the people of the holy covenant and reward those who forsake the covenant.

31 “His army will take over the Temple fortress, pollute the sanctuary, put a stop to the daily sacrifices, and set up the sacrilegious object that causes desecration.[n] 32 He will flatter and win over those who have violated the covenant. But the people who know their God will be strong and will resist him.

33 “Wise leaders will give instruction to many, but these teachers will die by fire and sword, or they will be jailed and robbed. 34 During these persecutions, little help will arrive, and many who join them will not be sincere. 35 And some of the wise will fall victim to persecution. In this way, they will be refined and cleansed and made pure until the time of the end, for the appointed time is still to come.

36 “The king will do as he pleases, exalting himself and claiming to be greater than every god, even blaspheming the God of gods. He will succeed, but only until the time of wrath is completed. For what has been determined will surely take place. 37 He will have no respect for the gods of his ancestors, or for the god loved by women, or for any other god, for he will boast that he is greater than them all. 38 Instead of these, he will worship the god of fortresses—a god his ancestors never knew—and lavish on him gold, silver, precious stones, and expensive gifts. 39 Claiming this foreign god’s help, he will attack the strongest fortresses. He will honor those who submit to him, appointing them to positions of authority and dividing the land among them as their reward.[o]

40 “Then at the time of the end, the king of the south will attack the king of the north. The king of the north will storm out with chariots, charioteers, and a vast navy. He will invade various lands and sweep through them like a flood. 41 He will enter the glorious land of Israel,[p] and many nations will fall, but Moab, Edom, and the best part of Ammon will escape. 42 He will conquer many countries, and even Egypt will not escape. 43 He will gain control over the gold, silver, and treasures of Egypt, and the Libyans and Ethiopians[q] will be his servants.

44 “But then news from the east and the north will alarm him, and he will set out in great anger to destroy and obliterate many. 45 He will stop between the glorious holy mountain and the sea and will pitch his royal tents. But while he is there, his time will suddenly run out, and no one will help him.

The Time of the End

12 “At that time Michael, the archangel[r] who stands guard over your nation, will arise. Then there will be a time of anguish greater than any since nations first came into existence. But at that time every one of your people whose name is written in the book will be rescued. Many of those whose bodies lie dead and buried will rise up, some to everlasting life and some to shame and everlasting disgrace. Those who are wise will shine as bright as the sky, and those who lead many to righteousness will shine like the stars forever. But you, Daniel, keep this prophecy a secret; seal up the book until the time of the end, when many will rush here and there, and knowledge will increase.”

Then I, Daniel, looked and saw two others standing on opposite banks of the river. One of them asked the man dressed in linen, who was now standing above the river, “How long will it be until these shocking events are over?”

The man dressed in linen, who was standing above the river, raised both his hands toward heaven and took a solemn oath by the One who lives forever, saying, “It will go on for a time, times, and half a time. When the shattering of the holy people has finally come to an end, all these things will have happened.”

I heard what he said, but I did not understand what he meant. So I asked, “How will all this finally end, my lord?”

But he said, “Go now, Daniel, for what I have said is kept secret and sealed until the time of the end. 10 Many will be purified, cleansed, and refined by these trials. But the wicked will continue in their wickedness, and none of them will understand. Only those who are wise will know what it means.

11 “From the time the daily sacrifice is stopped and the sacrilegious object that causes desecration[s] is set up to be worshiped, there will be 1,290 days. 12 And blessed are those who wait and remain until the end of the 1,335 days!

13 “As for you, go your way until the end. You will rest, and then at the end of the days, you will rise again to receive the inheritance set aside for you.”

Footnotes:

  1. 10:1 The third year of Cyrus’s reign was 536 B.c.
  2. 10:4 Hebrew On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, of the ancient Hebrew lunar calendar. This date in the book of Daniel can be cross-checked with dates in surviving Persian records and can be related accurately to our modern calendar. This event occurred on April 23, 536 B.c.
  3. 10:13a Hebrew the prince; also in 10:13c, 20.
  4. 10:13b Hebrew the chief princes.
  5. 10:13c As in one Greek version; Hebrew reads and I was left there with the kings of Persia. The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain.
  6. 10:16 As in most manuscripts of the Masoretic Text; one manuscript of the Masoretic Text and one Greek version read Then something that looked like a human hand.
  7. 10:20 Hebrew of Javan.
  8. 10:21 Hebrew against these except Michael, your prince.
  9. 11:1 Hebrew him.
  10. 11:2 Hebrew of Javan.
  11. 11:7 Hebrew a branch from her roots.
  12. 11:16 Hebrew the glorious land.
  13. 11:30 Hebrew from Kittim.
  14. 11:31 Hebrew the abomination of desolation.
  15. 11:39 Or at a price.
  16. 11:41 Hebrew the glorious land.
  17. 11:43 Hebrew Cushites.
  18. 12:1 Hebrew the great prince.
  19. 12:11 Hebrew the abomination of desolation.
New Living Translation (NLT)

Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.


Daniel 10-12 New King James Version (NKJV)

Vision of the Glorious Man

10 In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a message was revealed to Daniel, whose name was called Belteshazzar. The message was true, [a]but the appointed time was long; and he understood the message, and had understanding of the vision. In those days I, Daniel, was mourning three full weeks. I ate no [b]pleasant food, no meat or wine came into my mouth, nor did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled.

Now on the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I was by the side of the great river, that is, the [c]Tigris, I lifted my eyes and looked, and behold, a certain man clothed in linen, whose waist was girded with gold of Uphaz! His body was like beryl, his face like the appearance of lightning, his eyes like torches of fire, his arms and feet like burnished bronze in color, and the sound of his words like the voice of a multitude.

And I, Daniel, alone saw the vision, for the men who were with me did not see the vision; but a great terror fell upon them, so that they fled to hide themselves. Therefore I was left alone when I saw this great vision, and no strength remained in me; for my [d]vigor was turned to [e]frailty in me, and I retained no strength. Yet I heard the sound of his words; and while I heard the sound of his words I was in a deep sleep on my face, with my face to the ground.

Prophecies Concerning Persia and Greece

10 Suddenly, a hand touched me, which made me tremble on my knees and on the palms of my hands. 11 And he said to me, “O Daniel, man greatly beloved, understand the words that I speak to you, and stand upright, for I have now been sent to you.” While he was speaking this word to me, I stood trembling.

12 Then he said to me, “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words. 13 But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days; and behold, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I had been left alone there with the kings of Persia. 14 Now I have come to make you understand what will happen to your people in the latter days, for the vision refers to many days yet to come.

15 When he had spoken such words to me, I [f]turned my face toward the ground and became speechless. 16 And suddenly, one having the likeness of the [g]sons of men touched my lips; then I opened my mouth and spoke, saying to him who stood before me, “My lord, because of the vision my sorrows have [h]overwhelmed me, and I have retained no strength. 17 For how can this servant of my lord talk with you, my lord? As for me, no strength remains in me now, nor is any breath left in me.”

18 Then again, the one having the likeness of a man touched me and strengthened me. 19 And he said, “O man greatly beloved, fear not! Peace be to you; be strong, yes, be strong!”

So when he spoke to me I was strengthened, and said, “Let my lord speak, for you have strengthened me.”

20 Then he said, “Do you know why I have come to you? And now I must return to fight with the prince of Persia; and when I have gone forth, indeed the prince of Greece will come. 21 But I will tell you what is noted in the Scripture of Truth. (No one upholds me against these, except Michael your prince.

Warring Kings of North and South

11 “Also in the first year of Darius the Mede, I, even I, stood up to confirm and strengthen him.) And now I will tell you the truth: Behold, three more kings will arise in Persia, and the fourth shall be far richer than them all; by his strength, through his riches, he shall stir up all against the realm of Greece. Then a mighty king shall arise, who shall rule with great dominion, and do according to his will. And when he has arisen, his kingdom shall be broken up and divided toward the four winds of heaven, but not among his posterity nor according to his dominion with which he ruled; for his kingdom shall be uprooted, even for others besides these.

Warring Kings of North and South

“Also the king of the South shall become strong, as well as one of his princes; and he shall gain power over him and have dominion. His dominion shall be a great dominion. And at the end of some years they shall join forces, for the daughter of the king of the South shall go to the king of the North to make an agreement; but she shall not retain the power of her [i]authority, and neither he nor his [j]authority shall stand; but she shall be given up, with those who brought her, and with him who begot her, and with him who strengthened her in those times. But from a branch of her roots one shall arise in his place, who shall come with an army, enter the fortress of the king of the North, and deal with them and prevail. And he shall also carry their gods captive to Egypt, with their [k]princes and their precious articles of silver and gold; and he shall continue more years than the king of the North.

“Also the king of the North shall come to the kingdom of the king of the South, but shall return to his own land. 10 However his sons shall stir up strife, and assemble a multitude of great forces; and one shall certainly come and overwhelm and pass through; then he shall return to his fortress and stir up strife.

11 “And the king of the South shall be moved with rage, and go out and fight with him, with the king of the North, who shall muster a great multitude; but the multitude shall be given into the hand of his enemy. 12 When he has taken away the multitude, his heart will be [l]lifted up; and he will cast down tens of thousands, but he will not prevail. 13 For the king of the North will return and muster a multitude greater than the former, and shall certainly come at the end of some years with a great army and much equipment.

14 “Now in those times many shall rise up against the king of the South. Also, [m]violent men of your people shall exalt themselves [n]in fulfillment of the vision, but they shall fall. 15 So the king of the North shall come and build a siege mound, and take a fortified city; and the [o]forces of the South shall not withstand him. Even his choice troops shall have no strength to resist. 16 But he who comes against him shall do according to his own will, and no one shall stand against him. He shall stand in the Glorious Land with destruction in his [p]power.

17 “He shall also set his face to enter with the strength of his whole kingdom, and [q]upright ones with him; thus shall he do. And he shall give him the daughter of women to destroy it; but she shall not stand with him, or be for him. 18 After this he shall turn his face to the coastlands, and shall take many. But a ruler shall bring the reproach against them to an end; and with the reproach removed, he shall turn back on him. 19 Then he shall turn his face toward the fortress of his own land; but he shall stumble and fall, and not be found.

20 “There shall arise in his place one who imposes taxes on the glorious kingdom; but within a few days he shall be destroyed, but not in anger or in battle. 21 And in his place shall arise a vile person, to whom they will not give the honor of royalty; but he shall come in peaceably, and seize the kingdom by intrigue. 22 With the [r]force of a flood they shall be swept away from before him and be broken, and also the prince of the covenant. 23 And after the league is made with him he shall act deceitfully, for he shall come up and become strong with a small number of people. 24 He shall enter peaceably, even into the richest places of the province; and he shall do what his fathers have not done, nor his forefathers: he shall disperse among them the plunder, [s]spoil, and riches; and he shall devise his plans against the strongholds, but only for a time.

25 “He shall stir up his power and his courage against the king of the South with a great army. And the king of the South shall be stirred up to battle with a very great and mighty army; but he shall not stand, for they shall devise plans against him. 26 Yes, those who eat of the portion of his delicacies shall destroy him; his army shall [t]be swept away, and many shall fall down slain. 27 Both these kings’ hearts shall be bent on evil, and they shall speak lies at the same table; but it shall not prosper, for the end will still be at the appointed time. 28 While returning to his land with great riches, his heart shall be moved against the holy covenant; so he shall do damage and return to his own land.

The Northern King’s Blasphemies

29 “At the appointed time he shall return and go toward the south; but it shall not be like the former or the latter. 30 For ships from [u]Cyprus shall come against him; therefore he shall be grieved, and return in rage against the holy covenant, and do damage.

“So he shall return and show regard for those who forsake the holy covenant. 31 And [v]forces shall be mustered by him, and they shall defile the sanctuary fortress; then they shall take away the daily sacrifices, and place there the abomination of desolation. 32 Those who do wickedly against the covenant he shall [w]corrupt with flattery; but the people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits. 33 And those of the people who understand shall instruct many; yet for many days they shall fall by sword and flame, by captivity and plundering. 34 Now when they fall, they shall be aided with a little help; but many shall join with them by [x]intrigue. 35 And some of those of understanding shall fall, to refine them, purify them, and make them white, until the time of the end; because it is still for the appointed time.

36 “Then the king shall do according to his own will: he shall exalt and magnify himself above every god, shall speak blasphemies against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the wrath has been accomplished; for what has been determined shall be done. 37 He shall regard neither the [y]God of his fathers nor the desire of women, nor regard any god; for he shall exalt himself above them all. 38 But in their place he shall honor a god of fortresses; and a god which his fathers did not know he shall honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and pleasant things. 39 Thus he shall act against the strongest fortresses with a foreign god, which he shall acknowledge, and advance its glory; and he shall cause them to rule over many, and divide the land for [z]gain.

The Northern King’s Conquests

40 “At the time of the end the king of the South shall attack him; and the king of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter the countries, overwhelm them, and pass through. 41 He shall also enter the Glorious Land, and many countries shall be overthrown; but these shall escape from his hand: Edom, Moab, and the [aa]prominent people of Ammon. 42 He shall stretch out his hand against the countries, and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 43 He shall have power over the treasures of gold and silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt; also the Libyans and Ethiopians shall follow at his heels. 44 But news from the east and the north shall trouble him; therefore he shall go out with great fury to destroy and annihilate many. 45 And he shall plant the tents of his palace between the seas and the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and no one will help him.

Prophecy of the End Time

12 “At that time Michael shall stand up,
The great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people;
And there shall be a time of trouble,
Such as never was since there was a nation,
Even to that time.
And at that time your people shall be delivered,
Every one who is found written in the book.
And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake,
Some to everlasting life,
Some to shame and everlasting [ab]contempt.
Those who are wise shall shine
Like the brightness of the firmament,
And those who turn many to righteousness
Like the stars forever and ever.

“But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.”

Then I, Daniel, looked; and there stood two others, one on this riverbank and the other on that riverbank. And one said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, “How long shall the fulfillment of these wonders be?

Then I heard the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand to heaven, and swore by Him who lives forever, that it shall be for a time, times, and half a time; and when the power of the holy people has been completely shattered, all these things shall be finished.

Although I heard, I did not understand. Then I said, “My lord, what shall be the end of these things?

And he said, “Go your way, Daniel, for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. 10 Many shall be purified, made white, and refined, but the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand.

11 “And from the time that the daily sacrifice is taken away, and the abomination of desolation is set up, there shall be one thousand two hundred and ninety days. 12 Blessed is he who waits, and comes to the one thousand three hundred and thirty-five days.

13 “But you, go your way till the end; for you shall rest, and will arise to your inheritance at the end of the days.”

Footnotes:

  1. Daniel 10:1 Or and of great conflict;
  2. Daniel 10:3 desirable
  3. Daniel 10:4 Heb. Hiddekel
  4. Daniel 10:8 Lit. splendor
  5. Daniel 10:8 Lit. ruin
  6. Daniel 10:15 Lit. set
  7. Daniel 10:16 Theodotion, Vg. the son; LXX a hand
  8. Daniel 10:16 Or turned upon
  9. Daniel 11:6 Lit. arm
  10. Daniel 11:6 Lit. arm
  11. Daniel 11:8 Or molded images
  12. Daniel 11:12 Proud
  13. Daniel 11:14 Or robbers, lit. sons of breakage
  14. Daniel 11:14 Lit. to establish
  15. Daniel 11:15 Lit. arms
  16. Daniel 11:16 Lit. hand
  17. Daniel 11:17 Or bring equitable terms
  18. Daniel 11:22 Lit. arms
  19. Daniel 11:24 booty
  20. Daniel 11:26 Or overflow
  21. Daniel 11:30 Heb. Kittim, western lands, especially Cyprus
  22. Daniel 11:31 Lit. arms
  23. Daniel 11:32 pollute
  24. Daniel 11:34 Or slipperiness, flattery
  25. Daniel 11:37 Or gods
  26. Daniel 11:39 profit
  27. Daniel 11:41 Lit. chief of the sons of Ammon
  28. Daniel 12:2 Lit. abhorrence
New King James Version (NKJV)

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Daniel 10-12 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

Vision of a Glorious one

10 In the third year of King Cyrus of Persia, a message was revealed to Daniel, who was named Belteshazzar. The message was true and was about a great conflict. He understood the message and had understanding of the vision.

In those days I, Daniel, was mourning for three full weeks. I didn’t eat any rich food, no meat or wine entered my mouth, and I didn’t put any oil on my body until the three weeks were over. On the twenty-fourth day of the first month,[a] as I was standing on the bank of the great river, the Tigris, I looked up, and there was a man dressed in linen, with a belt of gold from Uphaz[b] around his waist. His body was like beryl,[c] his face like the brilliance of lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and feet like the gleam of polished bronze, and the sound of his words like the sound of a multitude.

Only I, Daniel, saw the vision. The men who were with me did not see it, but a great terror fell on them, and they ran and hid. I was left alone, looking at this great vision. No strength was left in me; my face grew deathly pale,[d] and I was powerless. I heard the words he said, and when I heard them I fell into a deep sleep,[e] with my face to the ground.

Angelic Conflict

10 Suddenly, a hand touched me and set me shaking on my hands and knees. 11 He said to me, “Daniel, you are a man treasured by God.[f] Understand the words that I’m saying to you. Stand on your feet, for I have now been sent to you.” After he said this to me, I stood trembling.

12 “Don’t be afraid, Daniel,” he said to me, “for from the first day that you purposed to understand and to humble yourself before your God, your prayers were heard. I have come because of your prayers. 13 But the prince of the kingdom of Persia opposed me for twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me after I had been left there with the kings of Persia. 14 Now I have come to help you understand what will happen to your people in the last days, for the vision refers to those days.”

15 While he was saying these words to me, I turned my face toward the ground and was speechless. 16 Suddenly one with human likeness touched my lips. I opened my mouth and said to the one standing in front of me, “My lord, because of the vision, anguish overwhelms me and I am powerless. 17 How can someone like me, your servant,[g] speak with someone like you, my lord? Now I have no strength, and there is no breath in me.”

18 Then the one with a human appearance touched me again and strengthened me. 19 He said, “Don’t be afraid, you who are[h] treasured by God. Peace to you; be very strong!”

As he spoke to me, I was strengthened and said, “Let my lord speak, for you have strengthened me.”

20 He said, “Do you know why I’ve come to you? I must return at once to fight against the prince of Persia, and when I leave, the prince of Greece will come. 21 However, I will tell you what is recorded in the book of truth. (No one has the courage to support me against those princes except Michael, your prince.

11 In the first year of Darius the Mede, I stood up to strengthen and protect him.) Now I will tell you the truth.

Prophecies about Persia and Greece

“Three more kings will arise in Persia, and the fourth will be far richer than the others. By the power he gains through his riches, he will stir up everyone against the kingdom of Greece. Then a warrior king will arise; he will rule a vast realm and do whatever he wants. But as soon as he is established, his kingdom will be broken up and divided to the four winds of heaven, but not to his descendants; it will not be the same kingdom that he ruled, because his kingdom will be uprooted and will go to others besides them.

Kings of the South and the North

“The king of the South will grow powerful, but one of his commanders will grow more powerful and will rule a kingdom greater than his. After some years they will form an alliance, and the daughter of the king of the South will go to the king of the North to seal the agreement. She will not retain power, and his strength will not endure. She will be given up, together with her entourage, her father,[i] and the one who supported her during those times. In the place of the king of the South, one from her family[j] will rise up, come against the army, and enter the fortress of the king of the North. He will take action against them and triumph. He will take even their gods captive to Egypt, with their metal images and their precious articles of silver and gold. For some years he will stay away from the king of the North, who will enter the kingdom of the king of the South and then return to his own land.

10 “His sons will mobilize for war and assemble a large number of armed forces. They will advance, sweeping through like a flood,[k] and will again wage war as far as his fortress. 11 Infuriated, the king of the South will march out to fight with the king of the North, who will raise a large army, but they will be handed over to his enemy. 12 When the army is carried off, he will become arrogant and cause tens of thousands to fall, but he will not triumph. 13 The king of the North will again raise a multitude larger than the first. After some years[l] he will advance with a great army and many supplies.

14 “In those times many will rise up against the king of the South. Violent ones among your own people will assert themselves to fulfill a vision, but they will fail. 15 Then the king of the North will come, build up a siege ramp, and capture a well-fortified city. The forces of the South will not stand; even their select troops will not be able to resist. 16 The king of the North who comes against him will do whatever he wants, and no one can oppose him. He will establish himself in the beautiful land[m] with total destruction in his hand. 17 He will resolve to come with the force of his whole kingdom and will reach an agreement with him.[n] He will give him a daughter in marriage[o] to destroy it,[p] but she will not stand with him or support him. 18 Then he will turn his attention to the coasts and islands[q] and capture many. But a commander will put an end to his taunting; instead, he will turn his taunts against him. 19 He will turn his attention back to the fortresses of his own land, but he will stumble, fall, and be no more.

20 “In his place one will arise who will send out a tax collector for the glory of the kingdom; but within a few days he will be broken, though not in anger[r] or in battle.

21 “In his place a despised person will arise; royal honors will not be given to him, but he will come during a time of peace[s] and seize the kingdom by intrigue. 22 A flood of forces will be swept away before him; they will be broken, as well as the covenant prince. 23 After an alliance is made with him, he will act deceitfully. He will rise to power with a small nation.[t] 24 During a time of peace,[u] he will come into the richest parts of the province and do what his fathers and predecessors never did. He will lavish plunder, loot, and wealth on his followers, and he will make plans against fortified cities, but only for a time.

25 “With a large army he will stir up his power and his courage against the king of the South. The king of the South will prepare for battle with an extremely large and powerful army, but he will not succeed, because plots will be made against him. 26 Those who eat his provisions will destroy him; his army will be swept away, and many will fall slain. 27 The two kings, whose hearts are bent on evil, will speak lies at the same table but to no avail, for still the end will come at the appointed time. 28 The king of the North will return to his land with great wealth, but his heart will be set against the holy covenant;[v] he will take action, then return to his own land.

29 “At the appointed time he will come again to the South, but this time[w] will not be like the first. 30 Ships of Kittim[x] will come against him, and being intimidated, he will withdraw. Then he will rage against the holy covenant and take action. On his return, he will favor those who abandon the holy covenant. 31 His forces will rise up and desecrate the temple fortress. They will abolish the regular sacrifice and set up the abomination of desolation. 32 With flattery he will corrupt those who act wickedly toward the covenant, but the people who know their God will be strong and take action. 33 Those who have insight among the people will give understanding to many, yet they will fall by the sword and flame, and be captured and plundered for a time. 34 When they fall, they will be helped by some, but many others will join them insincerely. 35 Some of those who have insight will fall so that they may be refined, purified, and cleansed until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.

36 “Then the king will do whatever he wants. He will exalt and magnify himself above every god, and he will say outrageous things against the God of gods. He will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, because what has been decreed will be accomplished. 37 He will not show regard for the gods[y] of his fathers, the god desired by women, or for any other god, because he will magnify himself above all. 38 Instead, he will honor a god of fortresses—a god his fathers did not know—with gold, silver, precious stones, and riches. 39 He will deal with the strongest fortresses with the help of a foreign god. He will greatly honor those who acknowledge him,[z] making them rulers over many and distributing land as a reward.

40 “At the time of the end, the king of the South will engage him in battle, but the king of the North will storm against him with chariots, horsemen, and many ships. He will invade countries and sweep through them like a flood. 41 He will also invade the beautiful land, and many will fall. But these will escape from his power: Edom, Moab, and the prominent people[aa] of the Ammonites. 42 He will extend his power against the countries, and not even the land of Egypt will escape. 43 He will get control over the hidden treasures of gold and silver and over all the riches of Egypt. The Libyans and Cushites will also be in submission.[ab] 44 But reports from the east and the north will terrify him, and he will go out with great fury to annihilate and completely destroy many. 45 He will pitch his royal tents between the sea and[ac] the beautiful holy mountain, but he will meet his end with no one to help him.

12 At that time
Michael, the great prince
who stands watch over your people, will rise up.
There will be a time of distress
such as never has occurred
since nations came into being until that time.
But at that time all your people
who are found written in the book will escape.
Many who sleep in the dust
of the earth will awake,
some to eternal life,
and some to disgrace and eternal contempt.
Those who have insight will shine
like the bright expanse of the heavens,
and those who lead many to righteousness,
like the stars forever and ever.

“But you, Daniel, keep these words secret and seal the book until the time of the end. Many will roam about, and knowledge will increase.”[ad]

Then I, Daniel, looked, and two others were standing there, one on this bank of the river and one on the other. One of them said to the man dressed in linen, who was above the water of the river, “How long until the end of these wondrous things?” Then I heard the man dressed in linen, who was above the water of the river. He raised both his hands[ae] toward heaven and swore by him who lives eternally that it would be for a time, times, and half a time. When the power of the holy people is shattered, all these things will be completed.

I heard but did not understand. So I asked, “My lord, what will be the outcome of these things?”

He said, “Go on your way, Daniel, for the words are secret and sealed until the time of the end. 10 Many will be purified, cleansed, and refined, but the wicked will act wickedly; none of the wicked will understand, but those who have insight will understand. 11 From the time the daily sacrifice is abolished and the abomination of desolation is set up, there will be 1,290 days. 12 Happy is the one who waits for and reaches 1,335 days. 13 But as for you, go on your way to the end;[af] you will rest, and then you will stand to receive your allotted inheritance at the end of the days.”

Footnotes:

  1. 10:4 = Nisan (March–April)
  2. 10:5 Some Hb mss read Ophir
  3. 10:6 The identity of this stone is uncertain.
  4. 10:8 Lit my splendor was turned on me to ruin
  5. 10:9 Lit a sleep on my face
  6. 10:11 by God added for clarity, also in v. 19
  7. 10:17 Lit Can I, a servant of my lord
  8. 10:19 Lit afraid, man
  9. 11:6 Some Hb mss, Theod read the child; Syr, Vg read her children
  10. 11:7 Lit from the shoot of her roots
  11. 11:10 Lit advance and overflow and pass through
  12. 11:13 Lit At the end of the times
  13. 11:16 = Israel
  14. 11:17 = the king of the South
  15. 11:17 Lit him the daughter of women
  16. 11:17 Perhaps the kingdom
  17. 11:18 of the Mediterranean
  18. 11:20 Or not openly
  19. 11:21 Or come without warning
  20. 11:23 Or a few people
  21. 11:24 Or Without warning
  22. 11:28 Or the Jewish people and religion
  23. 11:29 Lit but the last
  24. 11:30 = the Romans
  25. 11:37 Or God
  26. 11:39 Or those he acknowledges
  27. 11:41 Lit the first
  28. 11:43 Lit Cushites at his steps
  29. 11:45 Or the seas at
  30. 12:4 LXX reads and the earth will be filled with unrighteousness
  31. 12:7 Lit raised his right and his left
  32. 12:13 LXX omits to the end
Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

The Christian Standard Bible. Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible®, and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers, all rights reserved.

Daniel 10-12 New International Version (NIV)

Daniel’s Vision of a Man

10 In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia, a revelation was given to Daniel (who was called Belteshazzar). Its message was true and it concerned a great war.[a] The understanding of the message came to him in a vision.

At that time I, Daniel, mourned for three weeks. I ate no choice food; no meat or wine touched my lips; and I used no lotions at all until the three weeks were over.

On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I was standing on the bank of the great river, the Tigris, I looked up and there before me was a man dressed in linen, with a belt of fine gold from Uphaz around his waist. His body was like topaz, his face like lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and his voice like the sound of a multitude.

I, Daniel, was the only one who saw the vision; those who were with me did not see it, but such terror overwhelmed them that they fled and hid themselves. So I was left alone, gazing at this great vision; I had no strength left, my face turned deathly pale and I was helpless. Then I heard him speaking, and as I listened to him, I fell into a deep sleep, my face to the ground.

10 A hand touched me and set me trembling on my hands and knees. 11 He said, “Daniel, you who are highly esteemed, consider carefully the words I am about to speak to you, and stand up, for I have now been sent to you.” And when he said this to me, I stood up trembling.

12 Then he continued, “Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. 13 But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia. 14 Now I have come to explain to you what will happen to your people in the future, for the vision concerns a time yet to come.

15 While he was saying this to me, I bowed with my face toward the ground and was speechless. 16 Then one who looked like a man[b] touched my lips, and I opened my mouth and began to speak. I said to the one standing before me, “I am overcome with anguish because of the vision, my lord, and I feel very weak. 17 How can I, your servant, talk with you, my lord? My strength is gone and I can hardly breathe.”

18 Again the one who looked like a man touched me and gave me strength. 19 “Do not be afraid, you who are highly esteemed,” he said. “Peace! Be strong now; be strong.”

When he spoke to me, I was strengthened and said, “Speak, my lord, since you have given me strength.”

20 So he said, “Do you know why I have come to you? Soon I will return to fight against the prince of Persia, and when I go, the prince of Greece will come; 21 but first I will tell you what is written in the Book of Truth. (No one supports me against them except Michael, your prince. 11 And in the first year of Darius the Mede, I took my stand to support and protect him.)

The Kings of the South and the North

“Now then, I tell you the truth: Three more kings will arise in Persia, and then a fourth, who will be far richer than all the others. When he has gained power by his wealth, he will stir up everyone against the kingdom of Greece. Then a mighty king will arise, who will rule with great power and do as he pleases. After he has arisen, his empire will be broken up and parceled out toward the four winds of heaven. It will not go to his descendants, nor will it have the power he exercised, because his empire will be uprooted and given to others.

“The king of the South will become strong, but one of his commanders will become even stronger than he and will rule his own kingdom with great power. After some years, they will become allies. The daughter of the king of the South will go to the king of the North to make an alliance, but she will not retain her power, and he and his power[c] will not last. In those days she will be betrayed, together with her royal escort and her father[d] and the one who supported her.

“One from her family line will arise to take her place. He will attack the forces of the king of the North and enter his fortress; he will fight against them and be victorious. He will also seize their gods, their metal images and their valuable articles of silver and gold and carry them off to Egypt. For some years he will leave the king of the North alone. Then the king of the North will invade the realm of the king of the South but will retreat to his own country. 10 His sons will prepare for war and assemble a great army, which will sweep on like an irresistible flood and carry the battle as far as his fortress.

11 “Then the king of the South will march out in a rage and fight against the king of the North, who will raise a large army, but it will be defeated. 12 When the army is carried off, the king of the South will be filled with pride and will slaughter many thousands, yet he will not remain triumphant. 13 For the king of the North will muster another army, larger than the first; and after several years, he will advance with a huge army fully equipped.

14 “In those times many will rise against the king of the South. Those who are violent among your own people will rebel in fulfillment of the vision, but without success. 15 Then the king of the North will come and build up siege ramps and will capture a fortified city. The forces of the South will be powerless to resist; even their best troops will not have the strength to stand. 16 The invader will do as he pleases; no one will be able to stand against him. He will establish himself in the Beautiful Land and will have the power to destroy it. 17 He will determine to come with the might of his entire kingdom and will make an alliance with the king of the South. And he will give him a daughter in marriage in order to overthrow the kingdom, but his plans[e] will not succeed or help him. 18 Then he will turn his attention to the coastlands and will take many of them, but a commander will put an end to his insolence and will turn his insolence back on him. 19 After this, he will turn back toward the fortresses of his own country but will stumble and fall, to be seen no more.

20 “His successor will send out a tax collector to maintain the royal splendor. In a few years, however, he will be destroyed, yet not in anger or in battle.

21 “He will be succeeded by a contemptible person who has not been given the honor of royalty. He will invade the kingdom when its people feel secure, and he will seize it through intrigue. 22 Then an overwhelming army will be swept away before him; both it and a prince of the covenant will be destroyed. 23 After coming to an agreement with him, he will act deceitfully, and with only a few people he will rise to power. 24 When the richest provinces feel secure, he will invade them and will achieve what neither his fathers nor his forefathers did. He will distribute plunder, loot and wealth among his followers. He will plot the overthrow of fortresses—but only for a time.

25 “With a large army he will stir up his strength and courage against the king of the South. The king of the South will wage war with a large and very powerful army, but he will not be able to stand because of the plots devised against him. 26 Those who eat from the king’s provisions will try to destroy him; his army will be swept away, and many will fall in battle. 27 The two kings, with their hearts bent on evil, will sit at the same table and lie to each other, but to no avail, because an end will still come at the appointed time. 28 The king of the North will return to his own country with great wealth, but his heart will be set against the holy covenant. He will take action against it and then return to his own country.

29 “At the appointed time he will invade the South again, but this time the outcome will be different from what it was before. 30 Ships of the western coastlands will oppose him, and he will lose heart. Then he will turn back and vent his fury against the holy covenant. He will return and show favor to those who forsake the holy covenant.

31 “His armed forces will rise up to desecrate the temple fortress and will abolish the daily sacrifice. Then they will set up the abomination that causes desolation. 32 With flattery he will corrupt those who have violated the covenant, but the people who know their God will firmly resist him.

33 “Those who are wise will instruct many, though for a time they will fall by the sword or be burned or captured or plundered. 34 When they fall, they will receive a little help, and many who are not sincere will join them. 35 Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.

The King Who Exalts Himself

36 “The king will do as he pleases. He will exalt and magnify himself above every god and will say unheard-of things against the God of gods. He will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, for what has been determined must take place. 37 He will show no regard for the gods of his ancestors or for the one desired by women, nor will he regard any god, but will exalt himself above them all. 38 Instead of them, he will honor a god of fortresses; a god unknown to his ancestors he will honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. 39 He will attack the mightiest fortresses with the help of a foreign god and will greatly honor those who acknowledge him. He will make them rulers over many people and will distribute the land at a price.[f]

40 “At the time of the end the king of the South will engage him in battle, and the king of the North will storm out against him with chariots and cavalry and a great fleet of ships. He will invade many countries and sweep through them like a flood. 41 He will also invade the Beautiful Land. Many countries will fall, but Edom, Moab and the leaders of Ammon will be delivered from his hand. 42 He will extend his power over many countries; Egypt will not escape. 43 He will gain control of the treasures of gold and silver and all the riches of Egypt, with the Libyans and Cushites[g] in submission. 44 But reports from the east and the north will alarm him, and he will set out in a great rage to destroy and annihilate many. 45 He will pitch his royal tents between the seas at[h] the beautiful holy mountain. Yet he will come to his end, and no one will help him.

The End Times

12 “At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book—will be delivered. Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. Those who are wise[i] will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever. But you, Daniel, roll up and seal the words of the scroll until the time of the end. Many will go here and there to increase knowledge.”

Then I, Daniel, looked, and there before me stood two others, one on this bank of the river and one on the opposite bank. One of them said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, “How long will it be before these astonishing things are fulfilled?”

The man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, lifted his right hand and his left hand toward heaven, and I heard him swear by him who lives forever, saying, “It will be for a time, times and half a time.[j] When the power of the holy people has been finally broken, all these things will be completed.

I heard, but I did not understand. So I asked, “My lord, what will the outcome of all this be?”

He replied, “Go your way, Daniel, because the words are rolled up and sealed until the time of the end. 10 Many will be purified, made spotless and refined, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. None of the wicked will understand, but those who are wise will understand.

11 “From the time that the daily sacrifice is abolished and the abomination that causes desolation is set up, there will be 1,290 days. 12 Blessed is the one who waits for and reaches the end of the 1,335 days.

13 “As for you, go your way till the end. You will rest, and then at the end of the days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance.

Footnotes:

  1. Daniel 10:1 Or true and burdensome
  2. Daniel 10:16 Most manuscripts of the Masoretic Text; one manuscript of the Masoretic Text, Dead Sea Scrolls and Septuagint Then something that looked like a human hand
  3. Daniel 11:6 Or offspring
  4. Daniel 11:6 Or child (see Vulgate and Syriac)
  5. Daniel 11:17 Or but she
  6. Daniel 11:39 Or land for a reward
  7. Daniel 11:43 That is, people from the upper Nile region
  8. Daniel 11:45 Or the sea and
  9. Daniel 12:3 Or who impart wisdom
  10. Daniel 12:7 Or a year, two years and half a year
New International Version (NIV)

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Daniel 10-12 The Voice (VOICE)

Although God has countless heavenly messengers, only two are named in the Bible: Gabriel and Michael. These heavenly messengers fill many functions in the Bible; for example, they are members of God’s divine council, they lead the heavenly army, and they deliver the words of God. In Daniel, Gabriel is a messenger in the most literal sense, bringing a revelation to Daniel through the explanations of a dream and of Scripture. Gabriel’s announcements about the coming Liberator do not end with Daniel. In the New Testament book of Luke, he is the one who announces the impending births of John the Baptist and Jesus to Zechariah and Mary, respectively.

10 1-2 In the third year of King Cyrus’ reign over the Persian Empire, Daniel, who had been named Belteshazzar by his Babylonian captors, received a word from God through another vision. The message proved reliable, and it had to do with a great war. Daniel understood the word and gained insight into the future through this vision. Here is his account.

These events happen around 535 b.c., when Babylonia is part of Persia.

Daniel: When I received this vision, I, Daniel, had been in mourning for three weeks. I had eaten very little, no meat and no rich foods at all. I had not enjoyed the taste of wine, nor had I used any oils to bathe or groom myself. I continued this way throughout the three full weeks. The vision came to me on the 24th day of the 1st month. As I was on the bank of the great Tigris River, I lifted my eyes and saw what seemed at first to be a man dressed in linen clothing. Around his waist was a belt made of the purest gold. His body had the appearance of yellow topaz; his face was bright like flashes of lightning; his eyes flamed like torches; his arms and legs sparkled like polished bronze; his voice sounded like thunder. I, Daniel, alone saw this man and heard his voice. Though there were others around me who did not see this sight, they were still overcome with fear and ran to hide. I did not. I was left all alone to witness this glorious sight. My strength soon left me. My face was drained of its natural color, and I was confused. I had no energy at all. Then I heard his voice and caught the sound of his words. As I did, I fell into a deep sleep—my face pressed to the ground. 10 Just then, a mighty hand touched me and lifted my trembling body onto my hands and knees.

Messenger: 11 Daniel, you are highly regarded by God. I have been sent to help you understand the destiny of your people. Stand up and listen carefully to what I have to tell you.

As he spoke, I slowly rose to my feet, though I was still shaking.

Messenger: 12 Do not be afraid, Daniel. From the very first day that you began to pursue understanding and humble yourself before your God, your words have been heard. I have been sent in response to what you’ve said. 13 I would have been here sooner; however, for the past 21 days the spirit prince of Persia opposed me and prevented my coming to you. Then Michael, one of the chief princes of heaven, came to my aid because I alone was busy dealing with the kings of Persia. 14 I have come to help you understand what will happen to your people in the last days,[a] for this vision is about a time yet to come.

15 As he was saying all this to me, I dropped my head and looked at the ground, completely quiet, unable to respond. 16 Then one who looked like the sons of men approached and touched my lips. After that I was able to open my mouth and speak again. I turned to the one standing before me.

Daniel: My lord, what I have seen has left me utterly depressed. I have no strength left. 17 How can I, your humble servant, even begin to address someone like you, my lord? My strength is gone, and I can hardly catch my breath.

18 Again the one who looked like a man reached out and touched me. With that I felt my strength begin to return.

Messenger: 19 Do not be afraid, you who are highly regarded by God. May peace rest on you and make you whole; be strong; be brave.

At his words, I grew even stronger.

Daniel: Please continue, my lord, for your words have given me strength.

Messenger: 20 Do you realize, now, the reason I have come to you? Soon I must return to continue the fight with the spirit prince of Persia. When I do go, the spirit prince of Greece will come to do battle. 21 Nevertheless, I will tell you what is inscribed in the scroll of truth. No one stands with me against the guardians except for Michael, your heavenly prince.

11 Messenger: Darius the Mede had been on the throne less than one year when I came forward to back him and strengthen him.

Now I am here to reveal to you the truth: Three more kings will rule in Persia. After them, a fourth will arise who will be much richer than all the others. He will use his wealth to build his power and extend his influence; then he will incite the nations to fight against the kingdom of Greece. Meanwhile in Greece, a warrior king will come to power.

The Greek warrior king is Alexander the Great in the late fourth century b.c.

With great authority he will rule his lands and do as he desires. But no sooner than he rises, his kingdom will be broken up and divided to the four winds of heaven. None of his own offspring will receive any portion, nor will these kingdoms exercise the great authority he once did, for his empire will be ripped from its foundation and given to others.

A series of powerful Persian kings arises after Cyrus. Over the next century, Persian power wanes until Alexander the Great brings down the Persian Empire.

The king of the south will then grow in power and prosper. Yet in time one of his own officers will become more powerful than he and rule over an even greater empire. Several years later, the king of the north and the king of the south will form an alliance. That alliance will be established by the marriage of the daughter of the king of the south to the king of the north; however, this union will not last. The princess will not hold onto power, and the king, too, will lose his throne. She will be given up along with her royal court, her father, and those who backed her. In response, one of her relatives, a branch from her roots, will rise to take his place and become king in the south. He will take up the sword and lead an army into the fortress of the northern king. He will fight against them and in the end be victorious. He will sack their temples and carry back to Egypt their gods, cast in metal images, and take their precious vessels crafted of fine gold and silver; for several years the king of the south will resist going to war against the king of the north. But then, in later times, the king of the north will invade the provinces of the king of the south, but soon will be forced to withdraw to his own northern lands. 10 His sons will commit to war and assemble a powerful army, a force that will flood over the land, pass through the territories, and take the battle as far as the southern king’s fortress. 11 At this provocation, the enraged king of the south will rally a large force to repel the northern invaders. And though the king of the north had assembled a powerful army, it will go down in defeat. 12 When the invading army is repelled, the heart of the king of the south will be caught up in pride, and so he will execute tens of thousands of his enemies; still he will not prove to be strong. 13 For the king of the north will return after a few years, having raised a fighting force far larger and better equipped than before. 14 When this happens many people will rebel against the king of the south. Violent people from your own people, Daniel, will join the fray in order to fulfill the vision, but none will succeed. All will fall. 15 Then the king of the north will come and build a siege ramp against a fortified city and eventually take it; for the south, even with their very best warriors, will have no strength left to fight. 16 The king of the north will go where he pleases, and his army will march on unmatched and undeterred. None can resist him. One day he will stand in the beautiful lands of promise with the power to destroy it or let it be. 17 Using the might of his kingdom, the king of the north will decide to force an alliance. He will give the king of the south his daughter for a wife with the hope that she might help conquer the kingdom from within; but his plans will not succeed. 18 Afterward, the king of the north will turn his attention to the coastlands, attacking the cities there, claiming many. Eventually a commander will put a stop to the violent attacks and turn the aggression back on the invader and his army. 19 The king of the north will flee to his own land and seek the protection of his own strongholds, but he will trip and fall, never to be seen or heard of again.

After his death Alexander’s kingdom is partitioned among his four generals, two of whom figure prominently in Daniel’s prophecy. Alexander’s generals continue to fight over Israel and its citizens. Seleucus Nicator rules in the north (Syria). Ptolemy Soter rules in the south (Egypt).

Messenger: 20 Another northern king will rise to take his place. He will send out an official to exact taxes from the most glorious jewel of the kingdom, namely Jerusalem, but his tyranny will not last long. He will be cut down, though not in the heat of battle or in an angry loss of control.

21 Yet another will rise to take his place: a truly despicable person. Though royal honors were not his by right, he will come in quietly and take over with cunning and clever promises. 22 Armies will be overwhelmed and crushed before him, and the prince of the covenant will be cut down as well. 23 Though his supporters are few in number, he will grow strong by deceiving those who have made alliances with him. 24 In a time of ease and great wealth he will quietly invade the wealthiest parts of the region and do what none of his royal predecessors had ever done before; instead of hoarding the treasure, he will distribute the plunder, possessions, and property among those loyal to him. And though he will make plans to attack fortresses, these plans will not last for long.

25 But the king of the north is not finished. Once again he inspires courage and gathers a large and powerful fighting force to attack the south; but the king of the south takes notice and gathers his own large, powerful army to wage war. But he will not be able to resist the northern invader because treacherous plans will be devised against him. 26 His closest advisors, those who eat from the royal table, will betray him and bring about his downfall even as his army is swept away. Many will die in battle. 27 Both kings will sit at the same table and lie to each other, their only interest in deceiving and harming the other. But none of this will matter, for the end is yet to come at the appointed time. 28 The king of the north will eventually return to his own land with riches won from conquered peoples. With his heart set against the holy covenant, he will do whatever his evil will desires and then return to his own land.

29 At the chosen time, he will once again attempt to invade the south, but this time will be different from any time before. 30 For warships will arrive from the west[b] and confront him. Fearful of their power, he will withdraw. On his way north, he will unleash his violent fury against the holy covenant and those loyal to it. At the same time he will look with favor on those who turn their backs on it. 31 The king will command his forces to take over the city and pollute the temple fortress. After they outlaw the daily sacrifices to the one True God, they will set up the disgusting idol that will desecrate the most holy place.[c] 32 With smooth talk, he will entice people who act wickedly and break the covenant. But those who truly know their God will remain strong and work against him. 33 The truly wise among God’s people will help the many understand the need to resist; yet for quite some time they will be killed by sword and fire, or they will be imprisoned and their property taken. 34 Those who fall victim to this persecution will receive only a little help, and many will join their cause out of smooth, deceptive speech. 35 Some of the wise will fall victim and be martyred in order to be refined, purified, and made clean until the end, for the appointed time is still to come.

Ironically, God’s people have been at their best, not when they are moving with culture, but when they are moving against culture. The most extreme examples are in times of persecution when culture is actively hostile to faith. Persecution does not destroy true faith; it refines it.

Messenger: 36 The king of the north will do as he desires. He will elevate himself and make the audacious claim that he is greater than all the gods. He will say horrendous things about the One who truly is God of gods. He will be successful in his exploitsbut not forever—for the time of wrath must be fulfilled and what is decreed must be accomplished. 37 He will have no respect for the gods worshiped by his ancestors or the one loved by women or any other god for that matter! For he will make himself greater than all gods. 38 Instead of these, he will honor only the god of fortresses—a god his ancestors never knew—with gold and silver, with costly stones and other precious gifts. 39 When he attacks the strongest fortresses, he will call upon this foreign god for help. He will bestow great honor on those who are loyal to him, and for any who acknowledge him, he will grant power and authority over many people and divide up the land as their reward.

40 Then at the time of the end, the king of the south will make war against the king of the north. The king of the north will storm through the troops with chariots, horsemen, and many ships, overwhelming the people 41 and advancing to the south. The northern king will enter the beautiful lands of promise and take control of many nations along the way. Yet other peoples will be rescued from his tyrannical hand: Edom, Moab, and the best of Ammon. 42 He will extend his reach over many other nations, and even the land of Egypt will not elude his wrath. 43 He will seize control over the treasures of Egypt, all of its precious items skillfully crafted of gold and silver. The Libyans and the Ethiopians will follow in his steps and do his bidding. 44 But various reports from the east and the north will eat away at the tyrant. Distressed and furious, he will send his forces to destroy and annihilate many nations. 45 One day he will pitch his palatial, royal tents between the Great Sea and the holy mountain of beauty, namely Mount Zion. Then and there his end will come, and no one will stand with him.

12 Messenger (to Daniel): At that time, Michael, the great heavenly prince, the grand defender and guardian of your people, will arise. Then the world will enter a time of distress unlike any in history, an hour of anguish greater than any nation has ever known. But during this time your people, those whose names have been written in the scroll, will be liberated. And many who sleep the sleep of death in the dust of the earth will awake, some to eternal life with the Lord and others to utter shame and eternal disgrace far from Him. Those who are wise will shine as bright as the sky at midday, and those who make the many righteous will shine as the stars forever and ever. As for you, Daniel, keep these visions and their meaning a secret. Write down what you have seen and heard, then seal the scroll until the time of the end. Many will wander here and there, and knowledge will expand.

Then I, Daniel, stood on the bank of the Tigris River and looked as two others appeared, one on my side of the river and the other on the far side. One of them spoke to the man dressed in linen clothing, who was upstream.

Heavenly Being: How long will it be until these disturbing events come to an end?

I watched and listened carefully. The man dressed in linen clothing who was upstream raised both of his hands into the sky toward heaven. He swore an oath by Him who lives eternally that these disturbing events would last for a time, times, and half a time; and that when the shattering of the power of God’s holy people comes to an end, then all of this will be over. I heard what he said but could not understand its meaning.

Daniel: My lord, how will all of this come out in the end?

Man in Linen: It is time for you to go on your way, Daniel, for the words must be kept secret and sealed until the time of the end. 10 Many will keep themselves pure and clean and refined despite the pressures of these times, but those who are wicked will continue their wicked ways and none of them will ever understand. But those who are wise will. 11 From the time when the daily sacrifice is prohibited and the disgusting idol that desecrates the most holy place[d] is put in its place, there will be 1,290 days.[e] 12 Those who remain true to God and reach the end of the 1,335 days are sure to experience God’s blessing. 13 As for you, Daniel, go and be faithful to the end of your life. You will surely rest, but when the end of days arrives, you will rise again to receive the inheritance allotted for you.

Footnotes:

  1. 10:14 This is a reference to the end of the age, but not to the end of the world.
  2. 11:30 Hebrew, Kittim
  3. 11:31 Literally, abomination of desolation; Matthew 24:15; Mark 13:14
  4. 12:11 Literally, abomination that causes desolation
  5. 12:11 Matthew 24:15; Mark 13:14
The Voice (VOICE)

The Voice Bible Copyright © 2012 Thomas Nelson, Inc. The Voice™ translation © 2012 Ecclesia Bible Society All rights reserved.

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