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Daniel 8Amplified Bible (AMP)

Vision of the Ram and Goat

In the [a]third year of the reign of King Belshazzar a [second] vision appeared to me, Daniel, [this was two years] after the one that first appeared to me. I looked in the vision and it seemed that I was at the citadel of [b]Susa, [the capital of Persia], which is in the province of Elam; and I looked in the vision and I saw myself by the Ulai Canal. Then I raised my eyes and looked, and behold, there in front of the canal stood a [lone] ram (the Medo-Persian Empire) which had two horns. The two horns were high, but one (Persia) was higher than the other (Media), and the higher one came up last. I saw the ram (Medo-Persia) charging westward and northward and southward; no beast could stand before him, nor was there anyone who could rescue [anything] from his power, but he did as he pleased and magnified himself.

As I was observing [this], behold, a male goat (Greece) was coming from the west [rushing] across the face of the whole earth without touching the ground; and the goat had a conspicuous and remarkable horn (Alexander the Great) between his eyes. He came up to the ram that had the two horns, which I had seen standing in front of the canal, and charged at him in [the fury of] his power and wrath. [In my vision] I saw him come close to the ram (Medo-Persia), and he was filled with rage toward him; and the goat (Greece) struck the ram and shattered his two horns, and the ram had no strength to stand before him. So the goat threw him to the ground and trampled on him, and there was no one who could rescue the ram from his power. Then the male goat magnified himself exceedingly, and when he was [young and] strong, the great horn (Alexander) was [suddenly] [c]broken; and in its place there came up four prominent horns [among whom the kingdom was divided, one] toward [each of] the four winds of heaven.

The Little Horn

Out of one of them (Antiochus IV Epiphanes) came forth a rather small horn [but one of irreverent presumption and profane pride] which grew exceedingly powerful toward the south, toward the east, and toward the Beautiful Land (Israel). 10 And [in my vision] this [d]horn grew up to the host of heaven, and caused some of the host and some of the stars to fall to the earth, and it trampled on them. 11 Indeed, it magnified itself to be equal with the [e]Commander of the host [of heaven]; and it took away from Him the daily sacrifice (burnt offering), and the place of His sanctuary was thrown down (profaned). 12 Because of the transgression [of God’s people—their irreverence and ungodliness] the host will be given over to the wicked horn, along with the regular sacrifice; and righteousness and truth will be flung to the ground, and the horn will do as it pleases [by divine permission] and prosper. 13 Then I heard a holy one (angel) speaking, and another holy one said to the one who was speaking, “How much time will be required to complete the vision regarding the regular sacrifice, the transgression that brings horror, and the trampling underfoot of both the sanctuary and the host [of the people]?” 14 He said to me, “For 2,300 evenings and mornings; [f]then the sanctuary will be cleansed and properly restored.”

Interpretation of the Vision

15 When I, Daniel, had seen the vision, I sought to understand it; then behold, standing before me was one who looked like a man. 16 And I heard the voice of a man between the banks of the Ulai, which called out and said, “Gabriel, give this man (Daniel) an understanding of the vision.” 17 So he came near where I was standing, and when he came I was frightened and fell face downward; but he said to me, “Understand, son of man, that the [fulfillment of the] vision pertains to [events that will occur in] the time of the end.”

18 Now as he (Gabriel) was speaking with me, I drifted into a deep sleep (unconsciousness) with my face to the ground; but he touched me and made me stand [where I had stood before]. 19 He said, “Behold, I am going to let you know what will happen during the final time of the indignation and wrath [of God upon the ungodly], for it concerns the appointed time of the end.

The Ram’s Identity

20 The ram which you saw with the two horns represents the kings of Media and Persia.

The Goat

21 The shaggy (rough-coated) male goat represents the kingdom of Greece, and the great horn between his eyes is the [g]first king. 22 Regarding the shattered horn and the [h]four others that arose in its place, four kingdoms will rise from his (Alexander’s) nation, although not with his power and heritage.

23 
“At the latter period of their reign,
When the transgressors have finished,
A [i]king will arise
Insolent and skilled in intrigue and cunning.
24 
“His power will be mighty, but not by his own power;
And he will corrupt and destroy in an astonishing manner
And [he will] prosper and do exactly as he wills;
He shall corrupt and destroy mighty men and the holy people.
25 
“And through his shrewdness
He will cause deceit to succeed by his hand (influence);
He will magnify himself in his mind,
He will corrupt and destroy many who enjoy a false sense of security.
He will also stand up and oppose the Prince of princes,
But he will be broken, and that by no human hand [but by the hand of God].
26 
“The vision of the evenings and the mornings
Which has been told [to you] is true.
But keep the vision a secret,
For it has to do with many days in the now distant future.”

27 And I, Daniel, was exhausted and was sick for [several] days. Afterward I got up and continued with the king’s business; but I was astounded at the vision, and there was no one who could explain it.

Footnotes:

  1. Daniel 8:1 The events recorded in ch 8 precede the feast recorded in ch 5.
  2. Daniel 8:2 Heb Shushan. This once great city, located about 250 miles east of Babylon, was the winter home of the Persian kings, and is the ancient site where the Code of Hammurabi was discovered in 1901.
  3. Daniel 8:8 Alexander the Great died unexpectedly at the height of his power, and his empire was divided into four parts—east, west, north, and south—ruled over by his four generals.
  4. Daniel 8:10 This horn of vv 9-12 is not to be confused with the “little horn” of 7:8. The near fulfillment of the prophecy most likely pertains to Antiochus IV Epiphanes, who came out of one of the four dynasties (the Seleucid Empire) into which Alexander’s empire was divided, and became a great conqueror, ruling from 175-164 b.c. Hating God, he profaned the temple, persecuted God’s people, the Jews (represented in this passage by “host” and “stars”) and attempted to destroy the Jewish faith (see note 11:21). The far fulfillment of the prophecy in vv 23-25 most likely pertains to the Antichrist and the period of tribulation (Rev 13:4-9).
  5. Daniel 8:11 Or Prince, i.e. God.
  6. Daniel 8:14 The Jewish celebration of the Feast of Lights (Hanukkah) in December commemorates the recapture of Jerusalem by the army of Judas Maccabeus and the purification of the sanctuary.
  7. Daniel 8:21 I.e. Alexander the Great, who consolidated the empire.
  8. Daniel 8:22 The four generals who divided the empire established by Alexander were: Seleucus (the north—Syria, Israel, Mesopotamia); Ptolemy (the south—Egypt, parts of Asia Minor); Lysimachus (the east—Thrace, parts of Asia Minor); and Cassander (the west—Greece, Macedonia).
  9. Daniel 8:23 Antiochus IV Epiphanes acquired the throne of Seleucia by murdering his brother, the rightful heir.
Amplified Bible (AMP)

Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation, La Habra, CA 90631. All rights reserved.

Daniel 8King James Version (KJV)

In the third year of the reign of king Belshazzar a vision appeared unto me, even unto me Daniel, after that which appeared unto me at the first.

And I saw in a vision; and it came to pass, when I saw, that I was at Shushan in the palace, which is in the province of Elam; and I saw in a vision, and I was by the river of Ulai.

Then I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram which had two horns: and the two horns were high; but one was higher than the other, and the higher came up last.

I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward, and southward; so that no beasts might stand before him, neither was there any that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became great.

And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes.

And he came to the ram that had two horns, which I had seen standing before the river, and ran unto him in the fury of his power.

And I saw him come close unto the ram, and he was moved with choler against him, and smote the ram, and brake his two horns: and there was no power in the ram to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground, and stamped upon him: and there was none that could deliver the ram out of his hand.

Therefore the he goat waxed very great: and when he was strong, the great horn was broken; and for it came up four notable ones toward the four winds of heaven.

And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land.

10 And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them.

11 Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of the sanctuary was cast down.

12 And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practised, and prospered.

13 Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?

14 And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.

15 And it came to pass, when I, even I Daniel, had seen the vision, and sought for the meaning, then, behold, there stood before me as the appearance of a man.

16 And I heard a man's voice between the banks of Ulai, which called, and said, Gabriel, make this man to understand the vision.

17 So he came near where I stood: and when he came, I was afraid, and fell upon my face: but he said unto me, Understand, O son of man: for at the time of the end shall be the vision.

18 Now as he was speaking with me, I was in a deep sleep on my face toward the ground: but he touched me, and set me upright.

19 And he said, Behold, I will make thee know what shall be in the last end of the indignation: for at the time appointed the end shall be.

20 The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia.

21 And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king.

22 Now that being broken, whereas four stood up for it, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not in his power.

23 And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up.

24 And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people.

25 And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand.

26 And the vision of the evening and the morning which was told is true: wherefore shut thou up the vision; for it shall be for many days.

27 And I Daniel fainted, and was sick certain days; afterward I rose up, and did the king's business; and I was astonished at the vision, but none understood it.

Daniel 8Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

The Vision of a Ram and a Goat

In the third year of King Belshazzar’s reign, a vision appeared to me, Daniel, after the one that had appeared to me earlier. I saw the vision, and as I watched, I was in the fortress city of Susa, in the province of Elam. I saw in the vision that I was beside the Ulai Canal. I looked up,[a] and there was a ram standing beside the canal. He had two horns. The two horns were long, but one was longer than the other, and the longer one came up last. I saw the ram charging to the west, the north, and the south. No animal could stand against him, and there was no rescue from his power. He did whatever he wanted and became great.

As I was observing, a male goat appeared, coming from the west across the surface of the entire earth without touching the ground. The goat had a conspicuous horn[b] between his eyes. He came toward the two-horned ram I had seen standing beside the canal and rushed at him with savage fury. I saw him approaching the ram, and infuriated with him, he struck the ram, shattering his two horns, and the ram was not strong enough to stand against him. The goat threw him to the ground and trampled him, and there was no one to rescue the ram from his power. Then the male goat became very great, but when he became powerful, the large horn was shattered. Four conspicuous horns came up in its place, pointing toward the four winds of heaven.

The Little Horn

From one of them a little horn emerged and grew extensively toward the south and the east and toward the beautiful land.[c] 10 It grew as high as the heavenly host, made some of the stars and some of the host fall to the earth, and trampled them. 11 It made itself great, even up to the Prince of the host; it removed His daily sacrifice and overthrew the place of His sanctuary. 12 Because of rebellion, a host, together with the daily sacrifice, will be given over. The horn will throw truth to the ground and will be successful in whatever it does.

13 Then I heard a holy one speaking, and another holy one said to the speaker, “How long will the events of this vision last—the daily sacrifice, the rebellion that makes desolate, and the giving over of the sanctuary and of the host to be trampled?”

14 He said to me,[d] “For 2,300 evenings and mornings; then the sanctuary will be restored.”

Interpretation of the Vision

15 While I, Daniel, was watching the vision and trying to understand it, there stood before me someone who appeared to be a man. 16 I heard a human voice calling from the middle of the Ulai: “Gabriel, explain the vision to this man.”

17 So he approached where I was standing; when he came near, I was terrified and fell facedown. “Son of man,” he said to me, “understand that the vision refers to the time of the end.” 18 While he was speaking to me, I fell into a deep sleep, with my face to the ground. Then he touched me, made me stand up, 19 and said, “I am here to tell you what will happen at the conclusion of the time of wrath, because it refers to the appointed time of the end. 20 The two-horned ram that you saw represents the kings of Media and Persia. 21 The shaggy goat represents the king of Greece, and the large horn between his eyes represents the first king.[e] 22 The four horns that took the place of the shattered horn represent four kingdoms. They will rise from that nation, but without its power.

23 Near the end of their kingdoms,
when the rebels have reached
the full measure of their sin,[f]
an insolent king, skilled in intrigue,[g]
will come to the throne.
24 His power will be great,
but it will not be his own.
He will cause terrible destruction
and succeed in whatever he does.
He will destroy the powerful
along with the holy people.
25 He will cause deceit to prosper
through his cunning and by his influence,
and in his own mind he will make himself great.
He will destroy many in a time of peace;
he will even stand against the Prince of princes.
Yet he will be shattered—not by human hands.
26 The vision of the evenings and the mornings
that has been told is true.
Now you must seal up the vision
because it refers to many days in the future.”

27 I, Daniel, was overcome and lay sick for days. Then I got up and went about the king’s business. I was greatly disturbed by the vision and could not understand it.

Footnotes:

  1. Daniel 8:3 Lit I lifted my eyes and looked
  2. Daniel 8:5 Lit a horn of a vision
  3. Daniel 8:9 = Israel
  4. Daniel 8:14 LXX, Theod, Syr, Vg read him
  5. Daniel 8:21 = Alexander the Great
  6. Daniel 8:23 Lit have become complete
  7. Daniel 8:23 Lit king, and understanding riddles

Daniel 8New International Version (NIV)

Daniel’s Vision of a Ram and a Goat

In the third year of King Belshazzar’s reign, I, Daniel, had a vision, after the one that had already appeared to me. In my vision I saw myself in the citadel of Susa in the province of Elam; in the vision I was beside the Ulai Canal. I looked up, and there before me was a ram with two horns, standing beside the canal, and the horns were long. One of the horns was longer than the other but grew up later. I watched the ram as it charged toward the west and the north and the south. No animal could stand against it, and none could rescue from its power. It did as it pleased and became great.

As I was thinking about this, suddenly a goat with a prominent horn between its eyes came from the west, crossing the whole earth without touching the ground. It came toward the two-horned ram I had seen standing beside the canal and charged at it in great rage. I saw it attack the ram furiously, striking the ram and shattering its two horns. The ram was powerless to stand against it; the goat knocked it to the ground and trampled on it, and none could rescue the ram from its power. The goat became very great, but at the height of its power the large horn was broken off, and in its place four prominent horns grew up toward the four winds of heaven.

Out of one of them came another horn, which started small but grew in power to the south and to the east and toward the Beautiful Land. 10 It grew until it reached the host of the heavens, and it threw some of the starry host down to the earth and trampled on them. 11 It set itself up to be as great as the commander of the army of the Lord; it took away the daily sacrifice from the Lord, and his sanctuary was thrown down. 12 Because of rebellion, the Lord’s people[a] and the daily sacrifice were given over to it. It prospered in everything it did, and truth was thrown to the ground.

13 Then I heard a holy one speaking, and another holy one said to him, “How long will it take for the vision to be fulfilled—the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, the rebellion that causes desolation, the surrender of the sanctuary and the trampling underfoot of the Lord’s people?”

14 He said to me, “It will take 2,300 evenings and mornings; then the sanctuary will be reconsecrated.”

The Interpretation of the Vision

15 While I, Daniel, was watching the vision and trying to understand it, there before me stood one who looked like a man. 16 And I heard a man’s voice from the Ulai calling, “Gabriel, tell this man the meaning of the vision.”

17 As he came near the place where I was standing, I was terrified and fell prostrate. “Son of man,”[b] he said to me, “understand that the vision concerns the time of the end.”

18 While he was speaking to me, I was in a deep sleep, with my face to the ground. Then he touched me and raised me to my feet.

19 He said: “I am going to tell you what will happen later in the time of wrath, because the vision concerns the appointed time of the end.[c] 20 The two-horned ram that you saw represents the kings of Media and Persia. 21 The shaggy goat is the king of Greece, and the large horn between its eyes is the first king. 22 The four horns that replaced the one that was broken off represent four kingdoms that will emerge from his nation but will not have the same power.

23 “In the latter part of their reign, when rebels have become completely wicked, a fierce-looking king, a master of intrigue, will arise. 24 He will become very strong, but not by his own power. He will cause astounding devastation and will succeed in whatever he does. He will destroy those who are mighty, the holy people. 25 He will cause deceit to prosper, and he will consider himself superior. When they feel secure, he will destroy many and take his stand against the Prince of princes. Yet he will be destroyed, but not by human power.

26 “The vision of the evenings and mornings that has been given you is true, but seal up the vision, for it concerns the distant future.”

27 I, Daniel, was worn out. I lay exhausted for several days. Then I got up and went about the king’s business. I was appalled by the vision; it was beyond understanding.

Footnotes:

  1. Daniel 8:12 Or rebellion, the armies
  2. Daniel 8:17 The Hebrew phrase ben adam means human being. The phrase son of man is retained as a form of address here because of its possible association with “Son of Man” in the New Testament.
  3. Daniel 8:19 Or because the end will be at the appointed time
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Daniel 8The Message (MSG)

A Vision of a Ram and a Billy Goat

“In King Belshazzar’s third year as king, another vision came to me, Daniel. This was now the second vision.

2-4 “In the vision, I saw myself in Susa, the capital city of the province Elam, standing at the Ulai Canal. Looking around, I was surprised to see a ram also standing at the gate. The ram had two huge horns, one bigger than the other, but the bigger horn was the last to appear. I watched as the ram charged: first west, then north, then south. No beast could stand up to him. He did just as he pleased, strutting as if he were king of the beasts.

5-7 “While I was watching this, wondering what it all meant, I saw a billy goat with an immense horn in the middle of its forehead come up out of the west and fly across the whole country, not once touching the ground. The billy goat approached the double-horned ram that I had earlier seen standing at the gate and, enraged, charged it viciously. I watched as, mad with rage, it charged the ram and hit it so hard that it broke off its two horns. The ram didn’t stand a chance against it. The billy goat knocked the ram to the ground and stomped all over it. Nothing could have saved the ram from the goat.

8-12 “Then the billy goat swelled to an enormous size. At the height of its power its immense horn broke off and four other big horns sprouted in its place, pointing to the four points of the compass. And then from one of these big horns another horn sprouted. It started small, but then grew to an enormous size, facing south and east—toward lovely Palestine. The horn grew tall, reaching to the stars, the heavenly army, and threw some of the stars to the earth and stomped on them. It even dared to challenge the power of God, Prince of the Celestial Army! And then it threw out daily worship and desecrated the Sanctuary. As judgment against their sin, the holy people of God got the same treatment as the daily worship. The horn cast God’s Truth aside. High-handed, it took over everything and everyone.

13 “Then I overheard two holy angels talking. One asked, ‘How long is what we see here going to last—the abolishing of daily worship, this devastating judgment against sin, the kicking around of God’s holy people and the Sanctuary?’

14 “The other answered, ‘Over the course of 2,300 sacrifices, evening and morning. Then the Sanctuary will be set right again.’

15 “While I, Daniel, was trying to make sense of what I was seeing, suddenly there was a humanlike figure standing before me.

16-17 “Then I heard a man’s voice from over by the Ulai Canal calling out, ‘Gabriel, tell this man what is going on. Explain the vision to him.’ He came up to me, but when he got close I became terrified and fell facedown on the ground.

17-18 “He said, ‘Understand that this vision has to do with the time of the end.’ As soon as he spoke, I fainted, my face in the dirt. But he picked me up and put me on my feet.

19 “And then he continued, ‘I want to tell you what is going to happen as the judgment days of wrath wind down, for there is going to be an end to all this.

20-22 “‘The double-horned ram you saw stands for the two kings of the Medes and Persians. The billy goat stands for the kingdom of the Greeks. The huge horn on its forehead is the first Greek king. The four horns that sprouted after it was broken off are the four kings that come after him, but without his power.

23-26 “‘As their kingdoms cool down
    and rebellions heat up,
A king will show up,
    hard-faced, a master trickster.
His power will swell enormously.
    He’ll talk big, high-handedly,
Doing whatever he pleases,
    knocking off heroes and holy ones left and right.
He’ll plot and scheme to make crime flourish—
    and oh, how it will flourish!
He’ll think he’s invincible
    and get rid of anyone who gets in his way.
But when he takes on the Prince of all princes,
    he’ll be smashed to bits—
    but not by human hands.
This vision of the 2,300 sacrifices, evening and morning,
    is accurate but confidential.
Keep it to yourself.
    It refers to the far future.’

27 “I, Daniel, walked around in a daze, unwell for days. Then I got a grip on myself and went back to work taking care of the king’s affairs. But I continued to be upset by the vision. I couldn’t make sense of it.”

The Message (MSG)

Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson

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