31 Oct. Daniel 12:1-13

31 Oct. Daniel has a vision of the “end times”

“At that time [the angel] Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will stand up. There will be a time of much trouble, the worst time since nations have been on earth, but your people will be saved.”

“Everyone whose name is written in God’s book will be saved. Many people who have already died will live again. Some of them will wake up to have life for ever, but some will wake up to find shame and disgrace for ever.”

“The wise people will shine like the brightness of the sky. Those who teach others to live right will shine like stars for ever and ever.”

“But you, Daniel, close up the book and seal it. These things will happen at the time of the end. Many people will go here and there to find true knowledge.”

“Then I, Daniel, looked, and saw two other men. One was standing on my side of the river, and the other was standing on the far side. The man who was dressed in linen was standing over the water in the river. One of the two men spoke to him and asked, ‘How long will it be before these amazing things come true?’”

“The man dressed in linen, who stood over the water, raised his hands towards heaven. And I heard him swear by the name of God who lives for ever, ‘It will be for three and a half years. The power of the holy people will finally be broken, and then all these things will come true.’”

“I heard the answer, but I did not really understand, so I asked, ‘Master, what will happen after all these things come true?’ He answered, ‘Go your way, Daniel. The message is closed up and sealed until the time of the end. Many people will be made clean, pure and spotless, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. Those wicked people will not understand these things, but the wise will understand them.’”

“’The daily sacrifice will be stopped. Then, 1,290 days later, the destroying terror will be set up. Those who wait for the end of the 1,335 days will be happy. As for you, Daniel, go your way until the end. You will get your rest, and at the end, you will rise to receive your reward.’”

          (Daniel 12:1-13)

 

 

In today’s passage, Daniel had a vision of the ‘end times’ when the faithful whose names are written in the Book of Life rise from their graves. This is the closest reference to the resurrection of the dead to be found in the Old Testament.

In his vision of the ‘end times’, Daniel foresaw a future time when the righteous who have died will rise from the dead. He prophesied that these ‘end times’ would not occur until the daily sacrifice in the Temple at Jerusalem had been abolished and the ‘destroying terror’ or ‘Abomination of Desolation’ had been set up in the Temple (Daniel 12:11). Daniel did not state what form this ‘abomination’ or ‘terror’ would take, but this future ‘desolation’ clearly represented a great affront to Jewish worship in the Temple.

This part of Daniel’s prophesy was fulfilled about four hundred years after the time of his vision when Antiochus Epiphanes, the Seleucid (Greek) King of Syria, forbade Jewish religious rituals in the Temple in Jerusalem in 167BC. In their place, he set up a pagan altar to Olympian Zeus, and sacrificed pigs on the altar, thereby desecrating the Jewish Temple.

A detailed account of the Hellenisation of Jerusalem by Antiochus Epiphanes, together with the subsequent Jewish rebellion under Mattathias Hasmonaeus and his son Judas (nicknamed ‘Maccabaeus’ - ‘the hammer’), can be found in the two apocryphal books of the Maccabees (see 1 Maccabees 1:1-64 and 2 Maccabees 4:7 – 6:2).

The Jewish Festival of Dedication ('Hanukkah') commemorates the re-dedication of the Second Temple by Judas Maccabaeus in 165BC after its defilement by Antiochus Epiphanes (see 1 Maccabees 4:52-59). During this re-dedication, a single flask of olive oil miraculously kept the lamps in the Temple alight for the whole eight-day ceremony.

The photo (by A.Savin) shows the Temple of Olympian Zeus in Athens.

You can read more about Babylon @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/biblejourney2/34-exile-in-babylonia-amp-the-journey-back-to-jerusalem/the-middle-years-of-exile-586539bc/


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