Daniel 8

Daniel 8 Prophecy

The Daniel 8 Prophecy is an important one, in that it gives us clues as to the origin of the emergence of the “little horn” also known as Antichrist or the fourth beast system.  The angel that revealed this prophecy was extremely specific with Daniel on what the symbols of the prophecy represent, making it easy for us today to understand its meaning. 

In order to understand this prophecy, just as the same with many prophecies in the bible, you must look at the end of the chapter first (18-27) to gather the meanings of the symbols used:

Daniel 8:18-27 (Second Half)

“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.  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.  The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia.  And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king.  Now that being broken, whereas four stood up for it, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not in his power.  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.  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.  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.  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.  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.”

 Meanings of the Symbols from the Prophecy:

Ram with 2 horns = Kings of Media and Persia

Goat = King/Kingdom of Greece

Great Horn between his eyes = the first king

4 horns in it’s place = 4 kingdoms that will rise out of the great horn’s kingdom, not with it’s power

The Latter time of the 4 Kingdoms= A King of fierce countenance will stand up, destroy wonderfully, destroy the mighty and holy people, shall cause craft to prosper, magnify himself in his hand, will destroy many, will stand up against the Prince of princes, and will be broken without hand. 

Now we can go back to the first half of Daniel 8 and read the prophecy with understanding (1-17).  We will break up the first half of the chapter and include notes with explanations as well: 

Daniel 8:1-17 (First Half)

“1-3 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.”

-EXPLAINED- Here we see the angel speaking of the “Ram” standing by the river with two horns.  From the second half of the chapter we know that this ram represents the Kings of Media & Persia.

“4 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.”

 -EXPLAINED- Here you can see the Kings of Media and Persia were pushing Westward (towards Egypt), Northward (towards Lydia), and Southward (the Kingdom of Babylon).  The Kings of Media and Persia dominated all of the land during their reign and no one was able to withstand the power of their Kingdom.  Remember, the Kingdom of Media & Persia is the “Bear” beast from the Daniel 7 prophecy. 

“5 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.”

-EXPLAINED- Remember that from the second half of the prophecy, the “Goat” represents the King of Greece, and the notable horn between his eyes is the first king.  This indicates that the King of Greece moved quickly and of course came from the west.  Looking to a map, you can see that Greece was west of the Kingdom of Media & Persia.  The first king that this speaks of was Alexander the Great, King of Greece, who would couquer all of the Kingdom of Media & Persia with force and speed. 

“6-7 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.”

-EXPLAINED- Here we see the confrontation of the Kingdom of Greece, with the Kingdom of Media & Persia.  As you can see, the Kingdom of Greece (Goat), ran at the Kingdom of Media & Persia (Ram) with the fury of his power, and killed the ram.  The Kingdom of Greece through Alexander the Great “broke the two horns” (Media & Persia) as well, and they cast this kingdom to the ground quickly and forcefully. 

“8 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.”

-EXPLAINED- The Kingdom of Greece became mighty very quickly and defeated took over a huge territory in a very short period of time.  Alexander the Great was a young king, and was the “great horn”.  Alexander the Great while he was young and strong, died suddenly- so suddenly that no one believed that he was dead.  Many historians indicate that he was probably poisened.  This explains how the “great horn was broken when he was strong.”  After the death of Alexander, the was a war for the land of the kingdom between Alexander’s four generals.  After 40 years of fighting, in 281 BC, four distinct kingdoms were formed out of Alexander’s kingdom, ruled by the four generals.  This explains the “four notable horns that came up” after Alexander’s death, ruled by his four generals. 

“9 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.”

-EXPLAINED- One of the four kingdoms formed from the Kingdom of Greece, was the Kingdom of Macedonia which covers the territory of modern day Greece.  Shortly after Greece became four kingdoms, Rome defeated the Kingdom of Macedonia and made it a Roman Province.  As we look through history- this was the beginning of the “little horn” that began to grow great in all directions, soon devouring all of the original Kingdom of Greece and all of present day Europe and North Africa.  Roman influence, would years later become “Roman Catholic” influence.  Their influence would also spread to the Americas, through the Roman Catholic Church.   For over 1,000 years after the establishment of the Roman Catholic political/religous rule, Kings and Princes took their orders form the Vatican.    

“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. 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.”

-EXPLAINED- This portion of the prophecy is indicating some of the things that this “little horn” will grow to do.  Remember the little horn originated out of the defeat of the Greek City States of Italy, not too long after 282 BC.  Knowing this, you will realize that the little horn (Rome) was present and active during the life of Jesus Christ.  This little horn, which would eventially grow into becoming the Roman Catholic Ruling System, was known for torturing and killing bible believing Christians that wouldn’t bow to the Papacy.  They basically “threw them to the ground and stamped upon them” through thier persecution.  The Papacy also is know as the “Vicar of Christ” and according to the Vatican is “Christ Himself under the veil of flesh” fulfilling the prophecy saying that he will “Magnify himself as the prince of the host (Jesus- SEE “IDENTIFYING ANTICHRIST” PAGE FOR DETAILS).” 

“11 and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of the sanctuary was cast down.”

-EXPLAINED- When we look to the earlier years of Rome’s rule, in 70 AD, Emperor Titus led the Romans in the “Siege of Jerusalem”, where Jerusalem was attacked, and Temple in Jerusalem “Santuary” was completely destroyed and torn down.  Please remember, the Jews in Jerusalem never accepted that Jesus was their Messiah, so the Pharisees and Jewish leaders continued with the “daily sacrifice” rituals of the Old Testament.  In this siege, the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the sanctuary was destroyed fulfilling Jesus own words that not one stone of the temple will remain upon another.  This attack resulted in the death of 1,100,000 inhabitants of Jeruslam, and the enslavement of the remaining 97,000. 

“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.”

-EXPLAINED- Rome was given many warriors by God to fulfill the purpose of taking the daily sacrifice away.  Please understand, that with the death of Jesus Christ, the sacrifice was no longer needed as He became the sacrifice for all of our sins.  Because the Jews failed to realize this, they became the “transgressors” because the could not accept the Son of God.  Because of this, God himself allowed Rome to put an end to the daily sacrifice because of the transgressions of the Jewish people.  Rome would go on to ban and burn bibles, Christianity, and Judaism at many times throughout their history- fulfilling the saying “it cast the truth to the ground, practised and prospered.” 

“13-14 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?  And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.”

-EXPLAINED- Here the angel is identifying a time period.  Daniel asks (paraphrased) “How long of a time period is this vision going to be taking place in- this vision including the end of the daily sacrifice, destruction of the sanctuary (temple), and God’s chosen people being persecuted/trodden under foot?”  The angel answers, 2,300 days, then the sanctuary will be cleansed.  Using the day=year prophecy principle (See “Daniel’s 70 Weeks Prophecy” page), this would equate to 2,300 years- but from when?  Remember that the 70 weeks prophecy was exact to the very year, when the Messiah would come, so we’d expect that this prophecy of Daniel would be just as accurate.  All of the events mentioned by Daniel have to do with the little horn/The Roman Empire/The European Empires/The Roman Catholic Empire, So we can assume he may be referring to “how long will this fourth kingdom (refer to Daniel 7 Prophecy) last.”  Please note there are many opinions surrounding when this time period starts- regardless we remain awake, study diligently, and make ourselves ready for the coming of Christ.  Rome was around during the Kingdom of Greece, but the rise of Rome as the “little horn” began with their defeating of the Greek City States of Italy to take over the entire pinensula.  In and around 282 BC, Rome had begun to rise by defeating all of the northern Greek City States, but didn’t defeat ALL of the Greek City States until 275 BC.  This was the beginning of the rise of the little horn (The Fourth Kingdom of Daniel 7).  2,300 years from 282 BC would be the year 2018.  2,300 years from 275 BC would be the year 2025.  What does “the sanctuary will be cleansed” mean?  We are unsure, but watch and wait to see how these things unfold.  Remember, no one knows the day nor the hour that the Son of Man comes on the cloud– we are only to know the seasons based on God’s word in the bible, and to remain prepared. 

“15-17 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.  And I heard a man’s voice between the banks of Ulai, which called, and said, Gabriel, make this man to understand the vision.  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.”

-EXPLAINED- Notice that this last portion of the prophecy tells us that this vision refers to the “time of the end.”  In other words, the meaning of the “santuary will be cleansed”, correlates with the “time of the end.”  Based on Jesus own prophecy of the end times, we can look around and tell that we truly live in the time of the end.  We urge you to be sober, watch and wait for him- look up for our redemption is near.   

According to the exact timing of Daniel’s 70 week prophecy (See page), if this prophecy is as exact, we could see the “cleansing of the sanctuary” in our lifetime.  What that means “cleansing of the sanctuary”, we can’t say exactly- some things are still a mystery of God.  Could it mean Jesus returns- maybe or maybe not.  Could it mean the last stand of those that obey God’s laws, maybe or maybe not.  Regardless, it will be something that is noticable.  Time will tell.  These prophecies are written for our knowing, and judging of the seasons.  We are definitely living in the season of the fulfillment many prophecies.  The important thing for us in this time is obedience to God’s commandments and carrying the testimony of Jesus Christ.  Again, please prayerfully search the scriptures on this and study these things for yourselves.  We hope that this will aid in your own studies.   

Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus. ~ Revelation 14:12

Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. ~ Revelation 22:14

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