This is the last chapter in Daniel that is written in the common tongue (language) of Daniel’s time. In chapter 8, Daniel switches from Chaldee/Aramaic to Hebrew.
Chapter 8:1 will introduce a significant change in Daniel’s life and prophecy. This begins a dialogue of facts that had yet to be fulfilled while Daniel lived. The prophetic accuracy is so profound that many try to say these prophecies in chapters 8-12, written by Daniel during his life on earth, had to be written after the fact, then inserted into Daniel’s Book. Of course, that would not make them Daniel’s prophecies. God does not make mistakes other than to allow man’s free will to be free in thought and actions.
The Book of Daniel was originally written in two languages. From the beginning of the book through Daniel 2:3 it was originally written in Hebrew. In Daniel 2:4 the prophet switched to Aramaic [Chaldee], the language of the Babylonians and the general commercial world. The message and prophecies within these chapters are to the world in general. Beginning in Daniel 8:1, he switches to Hebrew…not a common language outside of the Israelites, especially the Ju-deans taken captive by the Babylonians. The purpose of changing languages is that the messages, dreams, visions, and prophetic words are a caution to Israelis. This means, to an Israel that had yet to exist…up to and including the time of Jacob’s Trouble, aka, Great Tribulation.
AHAMOMENT: Other passages in scripture that were written in Chaldee include Ezra 4:8–6:18; 7:12-26; Genesis 31:46; Jeremiah 10:11.
We will review Daniel 7:1-28, then step into the prophetic future of the world as it aligns itself with and often against Israel. Right off the starting pad, chapter 7 addresses an overview of the then, now, and tomorrow.
Chapter 7: Daniel’s dream of the four great world empires are key to understanding the book of Revelations. Beasts come up out of the sea – Judgment of the beasts – One who is like the Son of man.
Here is a review of the final five chapters of verse-by-verse in the Book of Daniel. It is all about Israel and the End of Time as we know it.
Chapter 8: A Vision of Daniel; Alexander the Great (destruction of the Medo-Persian Empire by the Macedonians); Empire broken into four kingdoms (Syria and Egypt most notable).
Chapter 9: The prayer of Daniel answered in the latter part in the definition of the Messianic kingdom. A better prayer to pray than the Lord’s Prayer which is supposed to be done in secret private if one reads the six verse prior to Jesus offering the prayer. This includes Daniel’s vision of what is known as the 70 7s.
Chapter 10: Conflict between Egypt and Syria (Judah under the Syrians paralleling what it will be like under the antichrist).
Chapter 11: The nameless persons, places, and things (pronouns) now identified (nouns).
Chapter 12: The time of the end of the world before Christ is on the throne in Jerusalem.
Daniel 7:1-4 Verse by verse commentary (NKJV)
Chapters 2:5 through 7:28 was written in Chaldee/Aramaic. Why? Most of this content had little to do with Israel directly as time moves through Daniel’s 69 of 70 weeks vision i.e., Daniels vision of the 70 7s as found in Daniel 9. This will be covered to a much greater extent as we comment verse by verse on Daniel 8 -12.
Daniel 7:1 In the first year of Belshazzar king of Babylon, Daniel had a dream and visions of his head while on his bed. Then he wrote down the dream, telling the main facts.
Dr. David Guzik puts it this way… [This first] vision – one of four described between Daniel 7 through 12 – is the most comprehensive. The other three visions go into greater detail within the general framework of this first vision. Belshazzar is either a son or grandson of King Nebuchadnezzar. There were three short-reigning kings between the great Nebuchadnezzar and son or grandson Belshazzar; a total of six years:
|Evil-Merodoch aka Amel-Marduk||562-560 B.C.|
|Neriglisar (Neb’s son-in-law)||559-556 B.C.|
Daniel 7:2 Daniel spoke, saying, “I saw in my vision by night, and behold, the four winds of heaven were stirring up the Great Sea.
Whether this was a vision (by night) or a dream, it matters not. What does matter is what follows. The four winds (rûach) of heaven stir up the waters (people) of the Great Sea, i.e., the Mediterranean Sea or bordering countries. How might one deduce this is the Great Sea? It is often referred to in scripture as the Great Sea. PLUS: all for empires that Daniel will refer to border on the Mediterranean Sea. This may also mean that the great sea of politics and people get greatly stirred up.
Daniel 7:3 And four great beasts came up from the sea, each different from the other.
Four great beasts from out of the sea? Consider this. Scriptures often refer to they’re being a sea of people or, probably in this case, the sea of politics. It is political differences or power that arise out of each new ruling empire. This is the meaning of “each different from the other”. From the sea of politics, we get four different political scenes in the areas surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. One has yet to come.
This may very well refer to Revelation 7:1 in combination with Revelation 17:15. The other common denominator is Jerusalem being a centerpiece of each successive empire. Each empire is a point in time. There are gaps between them.
Daniel 7:4 The first was like a lion and had an eagle’s wings. I watched till its wings were plucked off, and it was lifted up from the earth and made to stand on two feet like a man, and a man’s heart was given to it.
Adam Clark puts it… The beast like a lion is the kingdom of the Babylonians; and the king of Babylon is compared to a lion, Jeremiah_4:7; Isaiah_5:29; and is said to fly as an eagle, Jeremiah_48:40; Ezekiel 17:3”. Imagery is common to the Bible. It is the featured points of an animal that helps define the power.
Wings plucked, lifted up, made to stand like a man, given the heart of a man. These each describe the different phases of Nebuchadnezzar’s life when Daniel’s God cut him down. His wings were plucked as a king. He was insane for 7-years. He was then given back his sane mind by God (made to stand up like a man). Next, he stood up once again as the Golden statue head of Babylon, but this time with his mind on the one true God. He died shortly after.
Rev. Dr. Jstark