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Bible Commentaries

Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures
Daniel 10



Verses 1-13

The Vision of Future Wars Up Until Christ's Second Return (535-534 B.C.) - Daniel 10:1 to Daniel 12:13 records Daniel's most lengthy vision about the future wars between the kings of the North and the South. The traditional interpretation of this lengthy vision is that it represents a conflict, first between Persia and Greece, and then between two kingdoms that rise up out of the Grecian Empire, the Seleucid Empire of Syria and the Ptolemaic Empire of Egypt ( Daniel 11:4-20). History records the many battles that took place. The continual wars that took place between these two powers deeply affected the Jewish people since they were situated between them. Their land would be taken and retaken in these ongoing conflicts and battles, causing many problems for them. These conflicts are believed to carry on until the time of the death of Antiochus Epiphanes, a great enemy of the Hebrew people. In Daniel 11:21-35 we are given the description of Antiochus Epiphanes and his violent acts against the Jews.

Many scholars suggest that Daniel 11:36-45 refers to the antichrist figure that will arise during the Tribulation Period, whom Paul calls the Son of Perdition. Within this context, the king of the North would refer to Gog and his army that surrounds Jerusalem during the Battle of Armageddon, as described in Ezekiel 38-39.

At this point the vision comes to a close with a few brief remarks about the last times and the coming of the Lord and the final Day of Judgment. Thus, the first few verses of Daniel 12tell us that this is a time of trouble, which we now call the Tribulation Period. It makes a brief refer to the Rapture of the Church and the Great White Throne Judgment.

This lengthy vision that Daniel is given takes biblical prophecy up to the Second Coming of the Messiah when the "Times of the Gentiles" will come to an end. Thus, we see how the book of Daniel deals with prophecies limited to the Times of the Gentiles.

Outline- Note the proposed outline by William MacDonald regarding this interpretation: 123]

123] William MacDonald, Daniel , in Believer's Bible Commentary, ed. Arthur Farstad (Nashville: Thomas Nelson Pub, 1995), in Libronix Digital Library System, v 21c [CD-ROM] (Bellingham, WA: Libronix Corp, 2000-2004), "Introduction."

1. Introduction of the Vision — Daniel 10:1-9

2. Prophecies of the Immediate Future — Daniel 10:10 to Daniel 11:35

a) Greece's Conquest of Medo-Persia — Daniel 10:10 to Daniel 11:3

b) The Decay of the Grecian Empire — Daniel 11:4-35

i) The Wars between Egypt and Syria — Daniel 11:4-20

ii) The Reign of Antiochus Epiphanes — Daniel 11:21-35

3. Prophecies of the Distant Future — Daniel 11:36 to Daniel 12:13

a) The Antichrist — Daniel 11:36-45

b) The Great Tribulation — Daniel 12:1-13

Verses 1-21

Daniel 10:1 In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a thing was revealed unto Daniel , whose name was called Belteshazzar; and the thing was true, but the time appointed was long: and he understood the thing, and had understanding of the vision.

Daniel 10:1 — "In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia" - Comments - Cyrus the Great was the founder of the Persian Empire, ruling over various parts of this region from 559-530 B.C, a period of twenty-nine years. His rule began in 559 B.C. in Anshan, a region of the Median Empire. His reign was extended in 550 B.C. when he overthrew the Median king, taking full control of Media. Cyrus conquered Babylon in 539 B.C, extending his reign over most of the Middle East. 124] The Old Testament references to Cyrus the Great date his reign beginning with the overthrow of Babylon in 539 B.C. ( 2 Chronicles 36:22-23, Ezra 1:1-8; Ezra 3:7; Ezra 4:3; Ezra 4:5; Ezra 5:13-17; Ezra 6:3; Ezra 6:14, Isaiah 44:28; Isaiah 45:1, Daniel 1:21; Daniel 6:28; Daniel 10:1), perhaps because his role in redemptive history did not begin until this period of history. Thus, in the first year of his reign as king ( מֶלֶךְ) over the Medo-Persian Empire in 536 B.C, Cyrus fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah (740 - 701 B.C.), who ministered about one hundred and fifty years before this event took place, by ordering the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem ( Isaiah 44:28; Isaiah 45:1), and by asking the Jews to return and fulfill this decree, thus ending the Babylonian Captivity of the Jews after seventy years, as prophesied by Jeremiah ( Ezekiel 1:1-4). During the third year of his reign (535-534 B.C.), Daniel was given the vision recorded in Daniel 10-12.

124] Jack Martin Balcer, "Cyrus the Great," in The World Book Encyclopedia, vol 4 (Chicago: World Book, Inc, 1994), 1208.

Isaiah 44:26-28, "That confirmeth the word of his servant, and performeth the counsel of his messengers; that saith to Jerusalem, Thou shalt be inhabited; and to the cities of Judah, Ye shall be built, and I will raise up the decayed places thereof: That saith to the deep, Be dry, and I will dry up thy rivers: That saith of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, and shall perform all my pleasure: even saying to Jerusalem, Thou shalt be built; and to the temple, Thy foundation shall be laid."

Isaiah 45:1, "Thus saith the LORD to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden, to subdue nations before him; and I will loose the loins of kings, to open before him the two leaved gates; and the gates shall not be shut;"

Ezra 1:1-2, "Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and put it also in writing, saying, Thus saith Cyrus king of Persia, The LORD God of heaven hath given me all the kingdoms of the earth; and he hath charged me to build him an house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah."

Daniel 10:1"and the thing was true" - Comments- The word "thing" is also translated into modern English as "a revelation" (NIV), or "a message" (NASB).

Those who have entered Heaven and the spiritual realm talk of a higher level of perception and knowledge that man cannot achieve upon earth. People testify of recognizing individuals in Heaven before meeting them, of being aware of the thoughts of others, etc. When Daniel had this vision recorded in 10-12, he introduces it with a certainty that speaks from the eternal realm, a realm where only truth exists. Daniel speaks as one who is in eternity when he says, "and the thing was true."

Daniel 10:2 In those days I Daniel was mourning three full weeks.

Daniel 10:3 I ate no pleasant bread, neither came flesh nor wine in my mouth, neither did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled.

Daniel 10:3Word Study on "pleasant" - Strong says the Hebrew word "pleasant" "chemdah" ( חֶמְדָּה) (H 2532) means, "delight, desire, goodly, pleasant, precious." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 25 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "pleasant 12, desire 4, beloved 3, goodly 2, precious 4."

Daniel 10:3Word Study on "bread" - Strong says the Hebrew word "bread" "lechem" ( לֶחֶם) (H 3899) means, "bread, grain." The Enhanced Strong says this commonly used word is found 297 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "bread 237, food 21, meat 18, shewbread+64405, shewbread+46353, showbread 2, loaves 5, victuals 2, eat 1, feast 1, fruit 1, provision 1."

Daniel 10:3Word Study on "flesh" - Strong says the Hebrew word "flesh" "basar" ( בָּשָׂר) (H 1320) means, "flesh," and by extension, "body, person." The Enhanced Strong says this commonly used word is found 269 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "flesh 256, body 2, fatfleshed + 012772, leanfleshed + 018512, kin 2, leanfleshed + 075341, mankind + 03761, myself 1, nakedness 1, skin 1."

Daniel 10:3Word Study on "wine" - Strong says the Hebrew word "wine" "yayin" ( יַיִן) (3196) means, "effervesce, wine." The Enhanced Strong says this commonly used word is found 140 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as "wine 138, banqueting 1, winebibbers + 054331."

Daniel 10:3Comments- In order to better understand the foods that Daniel set aside during fasted, it is helpful to look back at the first story of Daniel refusing the king's portion of delicacies and choosing to each vegetables and drink water. The king feasted upon meats and wine and this was the very foods that Daniel fasted from in Daniel 10:3. Thus, Daniel very likely ate some of the same simple foods during his three-week fast that he did in Daniel 1:12.

Daniel 1:5, "And the king appointed them a daily provision of the king"s meat, and of the wine which he drank: so nourishing them three years, that at the end thereof they might stand before the king."

Daniel 1:12, "Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink."

Daniel 10:2-3Comments- Daniel's Mourning and Fast- Why was Daniel seeking God and fasting in Daniel 10:2-3? The angel will later explain by saying, "…thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God" ( Daniel 10:12).

Daniel 10:12, "Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words."

The immediate context reveals that this was the third year of the reign of King Cyrus ( Daniel 10:1), and it was the first month of the Jewish year ( Daniel 10:4) in which the Passover is celebrated on the fourteenth day of this month ( Leviticus 25:3).

Leviticus 23:5, "In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is the LORD"S passover."

During the first year of the reign of King Darius (538 B.C.), the Lord had revealed to Daniel that the Jewish captivity in Babylon was ending after seventy years ( Daniel 9:1-27). Two years later in 536 B.C. King Cyrus had given a royal decree freeing the Jews to return to Jerusalem and build the city ( Ezra 1:1-4). In the third year of King Cyrus (535-534 B.C.), Daniel is again mourning and fasting. It is very possible that Daniel , who would have understood the impact of this decree issued two years earlier, believed the Jews were not responsive enough in returning to restore Jerusalem (see Albert Barnes). The revelation that God will give Daniel in 10-12helps him to understand that Israel's full restoration will not take place until the distant future.

Daniel 10:4 And in the four and twentieth day of the first month, as I was by the side of the great river, which is Hiddekel;

Daniel 10:4Word Study on "Hiddekel" - Strong says the Hebrew name "Hiddekel" "Chiddeqel" ( חִדֶּקֶל) (H 2313) refers to the Hiddekel, or Tigris River. This is one of the rivers of Eden, which made its way eastward toward Assyria ( Genesis 2:14). It is also known as the Tigris ( τίγρης), which name is found in the Old Greek Version of the LXX. Gesenius says the word "Hiddekel" contains the prefix " ח," leaving a root word Teg'er, from which is derived "Tigris." He notes that an alternative prefix חַד literally means "active, vehement, rapid." This Hebrew word is only found two times in the Old Testament ( Genesis 2:14, Daniel 10:4).

Genesis 2:14, "And the name of the third river is Hiddekel: that is it which goeth toward the east of Assyria. And the fourth river is Euphrates."

Daniel 10:5 Then I lifted up mine eyes, and looked, and behold a certain man clothed in linen, whose loins were girded with fine gold of Uphaz:

Daniel 10:5Word Study on "Uphaz" - Gesenius and Strong say the Hebrew name "Uphaz" ""uwphaz" ( אוּפָז) (H 210) was a place a place known for its gold. This location is unknown, and may serve as the equivalent to "Ophir" ( אוֹפִיר) (ISBE). 125] PTW says the name "Uphaz" means "pure gold." It is found two times in the Old Testament, being translated Uphaz in both verses ( Jeremiah 10:9, Daniel 10:5).

125] Thomas Hunter Weir, "Uphaz," in International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, ed. James Orr (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co, c 1915, 1939), in The Sword Project, v 1511 [CD-ROM] (Temple, AZ: CrossWire Bible Society, 1990-2008).

Jeremiah 10:9, "Silver spread into plates is brought from Tarshish, and gold from Uphaz, the work of the workman, and of the hands of the founder: blue and purple is their clothing: they are all the work of cunning men."

Daniel 10:6 His body also was like the beryl, and his face as the appearance of lightning, and his eyes as lamps of fire, and his arms and his feet like in colour to polished brass, and the voice of his words like the voice of a multitude.

Daniel 10:7 And I Daniel alone saw the vision: for the men that were with me saw not the vision; but a great quaking fell upon them, so that they fled to hide themselves.

Daniel 10:7 — "but a great quaking fell upon them" - Note that Abraham had a similar experience in Genesis 15:12, "And when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him."

Daniel 10:8 Therefore I was left alone, and saw this great vision, and there remained no strength in me: for my comeliness was turned in me into corruption, and I retained no strength.

Daniel 10:8Comments- Daniel's description of him alone being able to see this great vision is similar to Saul's vision on the road to Damascus. In both visions, the men fell to the earth. In both visions, only Daniel and Saul were able to see the vision ( Acts 9:7; Acts 26:14).

Acts 9:7, "And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man."

Acts 26:14, "And when we were all fallen to the earth, I heard a voice speaking unto me, and saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks."

Daniel 10:13 But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia.

Daniel 10:13"But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days" - Word Study on "prince" - Strong says the Hebrew word "prince" ( שַׂר) (H 8269) means, "a head person (of any rank or class), a chief captain."

Daniel 10:21 But I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth: and there is none that holdeth with me in these things, but Michael your prince.

Daniel 10:21Word Study on "the scripture" - Strong says the Hebrew word "scripture" "kathab" ( כְּתָב) (H 3791) means, " something written, a writing, record, book." The Enhanced Strong says this Hebrew word is used 17 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as, "writing 14, register 2, scripture 1." This Hebrew word is used 12times in the books of Ezra , Nehemiah and Ester, in which it refers to a royal register, or a decree.

Comments- Thus, we have a Scriptural basis for saying that God has a royal book in Heaven in which He has written His divine plan of redemption for mankind.


Copyright Statement
These files are copyrighted by the author, Gary Everett. Used by Permission.
No distribution beyond personal use without permission.

Bibliography Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Daniel 10:4". Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. 2013.

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Thursday, October 22nd, 2020
the Week of Proper 24 / Ordinary 29
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