Daily Readings & Thought for November 2nd. “WHO HAS CHARGE OF YOUR PEOPLE”
The above words complete Daniel 11 which we read this morning. It is a long chapter with a mass of detail about events that were future from Daniel’s time. We read yesterday of how an angel “came to make you understand what is happen to your people in the latter days” [Daniel 10:14] and as a result, writes Daniel, “I turned my face toward the ground and was mute … no breath is left in me” [Daniel 10:15,17].
Today’s long chapter, details a great number of events and some of the detail is remarkably accurate about the events which happened in the centuries that followed. Sceptics express their conviction that the words must have been written after the events they predicted. Many verses are understood as foretelling events surrounding Antiochus Epiphanies and other warriors and leaders (circa BC 250 -150).
When the Dead Sea Scrolls were found in the late 1940’s and during the 50’s, many sceptics were nonplussed that in 3 different caves no less than 8 scrolls of Daniel were found! Before then they had tried to reason that the Septuagint translation of the Old Testament into Greek must have been only just before the time of Christ: however some Hebrew scholars dated the translation as early as BC200; naturally the sceptics disagreed.
What fascinates us is that the prophecy ends by reaching forward, as you read on into Daniel 12 to the time when “many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life …” [Daniel 12:2] This follows “the time of the end” [Daniel 11:40] and the description of a great battle in the Holy Land between armies from the north and south.
This is seen to be the same as the Armageddon described in Revelation! [Revelation 16:16] The king of the north wins, but only briefly, “he shall pitch his palatial tents between the sea and the glorious holy mountain” [Daniel 11:45] but the verse and the chapter end dramatically with the words, “Yet he shall come to his end, with none to help him.”
Daniel 12 begins by telling us that the archangel Michael arises, “ who has charge of your people”.
Daniel’s people are of course, the Jews. “And there shall be a time of trouble such as has never been …” Today’s largely godless world knows there are storm clouds ahead and the spirit today is as in Noah’s day. Jesus put it this way, “they were eating and drinking … and they were unaware until the flood came” [Matthew 24:38,39] So many will come to their end with none to help them, and, as then, so today nearly all are unaware, they sense the world must be heading for a climax, but blindfold their minds to the reality of a wondrous creator of all that exists and that he has foretold this world’s future.