Daniel 8International Standard Version (ISV)
The Vision of the Ram and Goat
8 [a]“During the third year of King Belshazzar’s reign, I, Daniel, saw a vision after the earlier vision that had appeared to me. 2 As I observed the vision, I looked around the citadel of Susa in Elam Province. While I watched, I found myself beside the Ulai Canal. 3 “Then I turned my head[b] to look, and to my surprise, a two-horned ram was standing beside the canal. The two horns grew long,[c] the first one growing longer than[d] the second, with the longer one springing up last. 4 I watched the ram charging westward, northward, and southward. No animal could stand before him, nor was there anyone who could deliver from his control.[e] He did as he pleased and exalted himself.
5 “As I watched and wondered, a male goat was coming from the west over the surface of the entire earth without touching the ground. The goat had a distinctive horn between its eyes. 6 It approached the ram with the two horns that I had observed while standing beside the canal, and charged at him, out of control with rage.[f] 7 I saw it approach the ram, overflowing with fury at him, and run into him with the full force of its strength. The goat[g] shattered the ram’s[h] two horns, and the ram could not oppose it. So the goat[i] threw him to the ground and trampled him. No one could rescue the ram from its control.[j] 8 Then the goat grew extremely great, but when it was strong, its great horn was shattered. In its place, four distinctive horns grew out in all directions.”[k]
The Insignificant Horn
9 “A somewhat insignificant horn emerged from one of them. It moved[l] rapidly[m] against the south, against the east, and against the Glory.[n] 10 Then it moved against the Heavenly Army. It persuaded some of the Heavenly Army to fall to the earth, along with some of the stars, and it trampled them. 11 Then it set itself in arrogant opposition to the Prince of the Heavenly Army, from whom the regular burnt offering was taken away, in order to overthrow his sanctuary. 12 Because of the transgression, the Heavenly Army will be given over, along with the regular burnt offering, and in that rebellion truth will be cast to the ground, while he continues to prosper and to act.”
The Duration of the Desolation
13 “Then I heard one holy person speaking, and another holy person addressed the one who was speaking: ‘In the vision about the regular burnt offering, how much time elapses while the desecration terrifies and both the Holy Place and the Heavenly Army are trampled?’
14 “He told me, ‘For 2,300 days.[o] Then the Holy Place will be restored.’”
Gabriel Interprets the Vision
15 “After I, Daniel, had seen the vision, I tried to understand it. All of a sudden, there was standing in front of me one who appeared to be valiant. 16 I heard the voice of a man calling out from the Ulai Canal,[p] ‘Gabriel, interpret what that fellow has been seeing.’
17 “As he approached where I was standing, I became terrified and fell on my face. But he told me, ‘Son of man, understand that the vision pertains to the time of the end.’
18 “While he had been speaking with me, I had fainted[q] on my face, but he touched me and enabled me to stand upright on my feet. 19 Then he said,
‘Pay attention! I’m going to brief you about what will happen at the end of the period of wrath, because its end is appointed. 20 The ram that you saw with a pair of horns are the kings of Media and Persia. 21 The demonic[r] goat is the king of Greece,[s] and the great horn between its eyes is its first king. 22 The shattered horn[t] and the four that took its place are four kingdoms that will come from his nation, but they will not have his strength.
23 “Toward the end of their rule, as the desecrations proceed, an insolent king will arise, proficient at deception. 24 Mighty will be his skills, but not from his own abilities. He’ll be remarkably destructive, will succeed, and will do whatever he wants, destroying mighty men and the holy people. 25 Through his skill he’ll cause deceit to prosper under his leadership. He’ll promote himself and will destroy many while they are secure. He’ll take a stand against the Prince of Princes, yet he’ll be crushed without human help.[u] 26 The vision about the twilights and dawnings that has been related is trustworthy, but keep its vision secret, because it pertains to the distant future.’
27 Then I, Daniel, was exhausted and ill for days, but afterward I got up and went about the king’s business. Nevertheless, I was astonished by the vision, and could not understand it.”
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