And as you saw the iron mixed with common clay, so they will combine with one another in the seed of men; but they will not merge [for such diverse things or ideologies cannot unite], even as iron does not mix with clay.
And as you saw the iron mixed with miry and earthen clay, so they shall mingle themselves in the seed of men [in marriage bonds]; but they will not hold together [for two such elements or ideologies can never harmonize], even as iron does not mingle itself with clay.
You saw the iron mixed with ·clay [pottery; terra cotta], but iron and ·clay [pottery; terra cotta] do not hold together. In the same way the people of the fourth kingdom will be a mixture, but they will not be united as one people.
You also saw that the iron was mixed with the clay. This means that the rulers of that empire will try to unite their families by intermarriage, but they will not be able to, any more than iron can mix with clay.
This mixture of iron with clay also shows that these kingdoms will try to strengthen themselves by forming alliances with each other through intermarriage of their rulers; but this will not succeed, for iron and clay don’t mix.
“But then the feet and toes that ended up as a mixture of ceramic and iron will deteriorate into a mongrel kingdom with some remains of iron in it. Just as the toes of the feet were part ceramic and part iron, it will end up a mixed bag of the breakable and unbreakable. That kingdom won’t bond, won’t hold together any more than iron and clay hold together.
This mixture of iron and clay also shows that these kingdoms will try to strengthen themselves by forming alliances with each other through intermarriage. But they will not hold together, just as iron and clay do not mix.
Your dream envisions that this kingdom of iron mixed with clay will be of peoples mixed but not united, the kingdoms joined in the bonds of marriage but not true allies, for iron and clay form no alloy.
Forsooth that thou sawest iron mingled with a tilestone of clay, soothly those shall be mingled together with man’s seed; but those shall not cleave to themselves, as iron may not be meddled with tilestone. (And that thou sawest iron mingled with clay, truly people shall mix their seed together, that is, they shall intermarry; but they shall not cleave long to each other, just like iron cannot successfully be mixed with clay.)
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
Upgrade to the best Bible Gateway experience! With Bible Gateway Plus, you gain instant access to a digital Bible study library, including complete notes from the NIV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible and the Believer's Bible Commentary. Try it free for 30 days!