Dan 7: MSG
1 In the first year of the reign of King Belshazzar of Babylon, Daniel had a dream. What he saw as he slept in his bed terrified him& a real nightmare. Then he wrote out his dream:
2 “In my dream that night I saw the four winds of heaven whipping up a great storm on the sea.
3 Four huge animals, each different from the others, ascended out of the sea.
4 “The first animal looked like a lion, but it had the wings of an eagle. While I watched, its wings were pulled off. It was then pulled erect so that it was standing on two feet like a man. Then a human heart was placed in it.
5 “Then I saw a second animal that looked like a bear. It lurched from side to side, holding three ribs in its jaws. It was told, ‘Attack! Devour! Fill your belly!’
6 “Next I saw another animal. This one looked like a panther. It had four birdlike wings on its back. This animal had four heads and was made to rule.
7 “After that, a fourth animal appeared in my dream. This one was a grisly horror & hideous. It had huge iron teeth. It crunched and swallowed its victims. Anything left over, it trampled into the ground. It was different from the other animals & this one was a real monster. It had ten horns.
8 “As I was staring at the horns and trying to figure out what they meant, another horn sprouted up, a little horn. Three of the original horns were pulled out to make room for it. There were human eyes in this little horn, and a big mouth speaking arrogantly.
NIV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible
7:4 lion … wings of an eagle. Winged figures are common in the art and sculpture of Mesopotamia. Winged bulls and winged lions, both with human heads, flanked thrones and entryways in Assyria, Babylon and Persia. Winged human figures (wearing headdresses with horns) are known as early as the eighth century BC and stood guard at Cyrus’s palace in Pasargadae. Winged creatures also figure in dreams. Herodotus reports a dream that Cyrus had just a few days before his death in which he saw Darius (then a young man) with wings that overshadowed Asia and Europe. In the Myth of Anzu (see next note), Anzu is defeated by having his wings plucked. This motif is also significant in the story of Etana, who helps an eagle whose wings have been plucked.
NIV Study Bible Notes
7:4–7 The lion with an eagle’s wings is a cherub symbolizing the Neo-Babylonian Empire (see Ge 3:24 and note). The rest of v. 4 perhaps reflects the humbling of Nebuchadnezzar, as recorded in ch. 4. The bear (v. 5), “raised up on one of its sides,” refers to the superior status of the Persians in the Medo-Persian alliance. The three ribs may represent its three principal conquests: Lydia (546 BC), Babylon (539) and Egypt (525). The leopard with four wings (v. 6) represents the speedy conquests of Alexander the Great (334–330), and the four heads correspond to the four main divisions into which his empire fell after his untimely death in 323 (see 8:22): Macedon and Greece (under Antipater and Cassander), Thrace and Asia Minor (under Lysimachus), Syria (under Seleucus I), and the Holy Land and Egypt (under Ptolemy I; see chart). The fourth beast (v. 7), with its irresistible power surpassing all its predecessors, points to the Roman Empire (cf. 11:30 and note; in the Apocrypha, see 2 Esdras 12:11). Its ten horns correspond to the ten toes of 2:41–42 (see note on 2:32–43).
As a student of Bible Prophecy I can honestly state that my knowledge has grown over the past forty years. Along with this growth has changed my thoughts and beliefs about Biblical prophecy. I must also state that some of my past views I no longer hold to be true, but that would take another article.
Commentaries vary as greatly as one person to another person.
What I have learned to do is:
a. interpret Scripture with Scripture
b. study actual historical records and documents
c. follow the supposition from Genesis to Revelation
d. study “types” and “shadows”
e. use Homiletics
f. be willing to grow with known understanding
There are many events happening currently around our world and they need to be understood in the light of Biblical prophecy. These events can give us a time frame of where mankind is in God’s timeline.
I know there are many out there that believe the above portion of Scripture refers to the United States of America because of the mention of eagle wings. Maybe in my younger self I might have agreed. Maybe due to the lack of accessibility and also limited finances and physical space. These are no longer a factor due to the great move of technology called the computer.
Within my computer software I have several versions of Bible translations at my fingertips. With the world wide web the ability to access all the libraries of the world for records of historical facts. Even maps dating back to the time of the Pharaohs of Egypt.
These countries have been in the headlines over the past six months:
a. Russia (the bear)
All of the above can be found throughout Biblical Scripture and also find to be referenced throughout Biblical Prophecy End-Times.
The description in the seventh chapter of Daniel is a much more detailed vision of that found in the previous second chapter.
There is coming one more great empire, but it is not an empire made by human government. It is the Kingdom Christ will setup after the battle of Armageddon.
Preceding this we see the image in the vision of Daniel come into being. A one world government, a one world financial system, and finally a one world leader.
The world will be in complete chaos, the headlines screaming that the citizens of the world want peace. In all this chaos a person, the anti-christ, will arise on the world scene. He will be like a superman working what has the appearance of miracles, the totality of all answers.
He will turn his’ attention to Israel and make a peace treaty with the nation. This is the beginning of tribulation, a time frame of seven years. Three and a half years through this man will break his’ promise. The beginning of the great tribulation.
He will set up his world government demand that all people bow down and worship his’ image. He will rule with an iron hand.
He will give power to a world financial system where he will set in place that all people receive the mark, the number of a man, six six six. Without this mark we are told in the Book of Revelation that no one will be able to buy, sell, or trade.
Those who refuse to worship the image of the beast and take the mark and also renouncing the Jesus is Lord will lose their head.
The United States of America are no where to be found having a part in Biblical prophecy.
Those plucked wings of that winged beasts are the symbols of Assyria (now Turkey & Syria).
I truly feel that the days of the great world powers are numbered. How many I cannot state! I do know that we are told to keep our eyes on “the fig tree” (the nation of Israel).
There is so much more that I would love to write in this space concerning current worldly headlines, but, that is for another time and article.
Reader, get out your Bibles, study, search out the facts. Be Ready!