By Israeli Bar Avaddhon
When we visited a city for the first time, perhaps with the intention of visiting a friend who had moved, we needed someone to give us directions and that these were accurate.
Otherwise we would have risked going somewhere else, even losing ourselves.
It will have happened to each of us, at least once in their life, to have asked for directions and to have found the "wrong" person, or the person who sent us from somewhere else or who increased our confusion.
Generally, when giving directions, it is necessary to find common points of reference, ie places or monuments that are known by both (the one who gives the information and the one who receives it) or who are immediately recognizable.
The points of reference are fundamental and should not be questionable.
Although the majority of us could not be called a professional physicist, it is also evident that in our way of speaking we have always implicitly recognized that time and space were intimately connected and we have always used them in our indications.
This helped us to orient ourselves and communicate efficiently.
If we say to a person "See you in via del Molino" without adding anything else, this person should necessarily ask "When?".
On the other hand, if we say "See you at 15 o'clock this afternoon", our interlocutor should ask us "Where?".
Otherwise we could never meet and this is because the information would be incomplete.
But the problem, as already mentioned, does not only concern incomplete information, but also questionable information.
If we said "See you in the most important place in the city!" our friend would probably ask us "More important from the point of view of whom?”
Or if we say "See you in the north" our interlocutor should ask "North of what?" and so on.
So it is clear: in order for our communication to be effective, we must make sure that we both know and share some fundamental concepts.
For many of us these concepts will be absolutely obvious and trivial but starting from this assumption we try to apply this "banality" in the study of the Bible.
Surely the information it gives is not incomplete (compare Proverbs 2: 1-6, Romans 15: 4; 2 Timothy 3:16, 17) although, as we all know, some of these can be understood only at the time established by God .
They are not even questionable if we have understood that the only "point of view" that really matters is that of the Almighty God - Isaiah 55: 9; Job 40: 1-5
At least true Christians make no debates about the trustworthiness of God's words - Romans 3: 3, 4
The problem, if anything, is our understanding of your words. Understanding which, as we have seen, can vary considerably if we are guided by our preconceptions, religious education, personal desires or other things.
The latest articles have put Israel at the center of attention, not only as a "geographical" nation but also as regards the restoration of true worship - (see articles titled "144,000 and beyond" and "Unveiled a sacred secret: restoration of true worship ").
This, as we have already begun to see in the article "Understanding the identity of the army of the heavens" *, is substantially modifying some of our convictions.
Without having to accept bias the theses presented in this blog, we should ask ourselves if our difficulty in accepting certain explanations is really due to scriptural convictions or simply the "hassle" of having to call into question in a manner so heavy.
The Christian, when he digs, tries to understand what the Bible says regardless of what "it will come out" and is very different from the one who "digs" in the attempt to find every verse, phrase, comma or meaning that can somehow comfort their beliefs or their religious organization - Acts 17:11
Only in this way do we show that we accept God's "point of view".
However, the restoration of Israel in the place that the Scriptures give him, allows us to make some important considerations regarding the respective kings of north and south described in Daniel.
Speaking of indications, no one would be hard pressed to accept that the respective definitions of kings are to be attributed to the fact that they were respectively to the north and south of Israel.
We agree on this, is not it?
So the point of reference that we should know all without exception, as in the case of a clear road indication, is Israel.
The Word of God did not limit itself to calling these "northern or southern" kings, but it was understood from the beginning about who or what they were.
Up to a certain point we followed this indication but then, for absolutely dubious reasons, we abandoned the point of reference.
Israel disappears from the world scene for 19 centuries but despite this we have continued to search and "identify" these kings.
To the north or south of what are these kingdoms, if there is no longer the point of reference?
The question might seem a little more subtle, in fact someone could assert that, even if Israel no longer existed as a political nation, but exist as geographical area where once Israel was once stood has always remained and this is unquestionably logical.
But this presupposes the fact that Israel served only as a geographical indication without any other implication.
However, we should ask ourselves if the description of the kings reported in Daniel also has to do with the fate of Israel rather than being a mere geographical indication.
Well, if we let it be only the Bible to guide us, we clearly see how these definitions concern the aims of these kings on the "Splendid country".
Whether these kings attacked, directly conquered Israel or placed themselves as "defenders", no one can deny that in all of Daniel's biblical book it is always the relationship with the nation that identifies them.
So the problem remains and is evident.
How is it possible to find any king, north or south, when there is no Israel as a geographical reference point but as an object of contention?
Is not this also to be linked to that previous conviction, namely that Israel has ceased to have importance in the purpose of God?
If we wanted to be consistent with the transition from physical Israel to spiritual Israel we should identify these kings at least in reference to Christians, but how could we distinguish them today, since they should be in every part of the globe?
If the reference point is "everywhere" there is no longer north or south and no reference point exists anymore.
So let's try to question what we have been taught in the light of current knowledge and see if our hypothesis finds the comfort or resistance of the Scriptures.
The statue of the dream of Nebuchadnezzar and the "fifth" horn
Let's go back to talk about the famous statue of the dream of Nebuchadnezzar described in the second chapter of Daniel.
Obviously we will no longer be doing disquisitions if the last king, the feet, may or may not be a king of the south because we have now understood that it is neither scriptural nor logical.
It will be useful, however, to step back and simply count the empires.
From the iron legs, subject that we know to be the Roman Empire, we pass directly to the feet of iron and clay.
We can discuss the fact that every single empire, up to its definitive fall as a dominant, may have one or more emperors.
The same ancient Babylon described here began with Nebuchadnezzar but lasted, at least for some time, up to BelÂ·shaz?zar (Daniel chapter 5) while remaining the head of gold until it was replaced by the next dominant empire, the Media-Persia .
In the same way we can see that Rome, during the period of domination on Israel, had more emperors and yet it was symbolized by the iron legs.
In fact, the statue indicates various different empires which were in fact Babylon, Media-Persia, Greece and Rome.
Taking note of this Scriptural fact... it is not clear that there is already something that does not come back with what we have been taught?
If the various kings of the north (and consequently those of the south) succeeded regardless of Israel, from which part of the statue would be identified the Carolingian empire, the German empire and the Third Reich?
Even if we want to unite the German empire with the Third Reich because of territorial sharing, at least there is no space for one or two empires?
In fact, as we have seen, regardless of who is the last empire described in the statue, it is evident that it must still be alive today since the Kingdom of God has not yet intervened in human affairs by ending them - Daniel 2: 44, 45
Does not this seem in keeping with the thesis of the disappearance of Israel?
Indeed, Israel disappears under the Roman Empire as a result of the destruction of Jerusalem - compare Daniel 11: 15-17; Luke 21: 20-22
Let us also ask ourselves why, precisely on those empires on which the discordant interpretations of various religious confessions are wasted, we have nothing at all from the statue of Nebuchadnezzar.
Daniel had the intention of several empires that would have followed many years after the fall of Babylon and admitted and not granted that we could discuss the identity of these, certainly no one has ever tried to discuss the quantity.
In fact, history confirms the exact succession of the empires described by him.
Why is it that only we in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries are discussing that, after the iron legs, are there actually two, three or four?
How many empires we count in the statue of Nebuchadnezzar's dream? How many empires said there would be, Daniel?
We also try to reflect on another part of the book of Daniel, or chapter 8.
The verses 8 to 12 read Â«Then the male goat exalted itself exceedingly, but as soon as it became mighty, the great horn was broken; then four conspicuous horns came up instead of the one, toward the four winds of the heavens.+ 9Â Â Out of one of them came another horn, a small one, and it grew very great toward the south and toward the east* and toward the Decoration.*+ 10Â Â It grew so great that it reached all the way to the army of the heavens, and it caused some of the army and some of the stars to fall to the earth, and it trampled them down. 11Â Â It exalted itself even against the Prince of the army, and from him the constant feature* was taken away, and the established place of his sanctuary was thrown down.+ 12Â Â And an army was given over, together with the constant feature,* because of transgression; and it kept throwing truth to the earth, and it acted and had successÂ».
Let us reflect for a moment on what we know.
Meanwhile, we must say that this is one of the most "controversial" chapters of Daniel to which they have been given various interpretations.
For some, since the "fifth horn" (that is, the last one, which emerges from one of the four) is seen on the head of the goat, it must be a general of the Greek army.
In fact, the most common objection has to do with the reference time.
Does not it seem a bit strange that the prophecy leaps thousands of years?
We know that the great horn on the head of the goat is Alexander the Great, and the four horns sprouting at his death are his four generals who actually divide that immense empire.
One of these horns will turn out to be the Roman empire and there is little to discuss about it because it is history that confirms it but from this point on there is no mention of any other intermediate empire because of this last horn, which it derives from the Roman empire, it is said that "It grew so much to reach the army of the heavens, and it fell to the ground part of the army and part of the stars, and trampled them. taken away the constant sacrifice, and the established place of His sanctuary was overthrown "
From these verses we not only see that there is no other empire between the fourth horn and the fifth, but that it is always the country of the Adornment to be the guiding thread.
So what is the only logical answer to the objection "Why the prophecy should jump almost 2,000 years"?
Because for almost 2,000 years there has been no more the object of contention that has entitled the antagonistic kings as kings of the north and king of the south. That is Israel.
Implications for us
This scenario leads us to really significant conclusions.
Meanwhile, it definitively undermines the hypothesis that "the fifth horn" of chapter 8 of Daniel may be Antiochus IV Epiphanes and therefore the hypothesis on the period of reference but adds another reason (if ever there was need) for which the "time of the end "can not be started in 1914.
If, in fact, the last empire was to be revealed only at the appearance of Israel, no date prior to 1948 can be considered valid.
It may be a later date, obviously, but not earlier.
This also helps us to understand that when the Lord spoke of "wars and reports of wars" as well as other aspects of the sign, the reference point would have been Israel both in the first century and in the time of the end - Matthew 24: 3-29
Also the Bible book of Revelation, which mentions prophecies to come, lists the same events of the Gospels and we have understood that at least a part of the trumpets of judgment are directed precisely against this nation.
As we have hypothesized, therefore, the penultimate king of the north must be a Roman emperor and can not be any one.
It must carry out its last activity within the destruction of Jerusalem or, at most, by the end of the first century.
In fact, if we can not separate the various North and South kings from the nation of Israel, we can not even do so from true worship (which we know disappears, as an organized religion, at the end of the first century).
The last king of the historical north must be he who has to do with the destruction of Jerusalem or, at most, with the death of the last apostle.
We are talking about Emperor Vespasian (69-79 E.V.) or at most Emperor Trajan (98-117) **.
The detailed historical reconstruction of the rivalry between the king of the north and the king of the south will be considered in a future article because it is now important to see if our hypothesis of the centrality of Israel finds the comfort of Scripture, hence of biblical history.
Moreover, what is the event described in Daniel that concludes the activity of the penultimate king of the north and what is the beginning of the last?
Answering this question is very important because it would allow us to understand where we stand, prophetically speaking, and what we should expect for the near future.
One of the major difficulties that could confuse us is to consider that some scriptures have, or may have, two applications, and in the Bible we have many examples of this kind.
The same Lord Jesus Christ, speaking of the time of the end, mentioned various events that the Christians of the first century could have recognized but that would have also concerned future events - compare Matthew 24:14, 21, 29-31
Thus it is evident, particularly with regard to the verses from 29 to 39 of chapter 11 of Daniel, that the difficulty of understanding also involves understanding which verses have a second fulfillment and which, on the other hand, are circumscribed exclusively in the past.
We must be very careful not to make Scripture say what it does not say and the danger exists so that, for the moment, we try to forget that the scriptures can have a second fulfillment by seeking a coherent chronological reconstruction.
We can in the meantime isolate a key passage in chapter 11 of Daniel which is verse 31 or the "repugnant thing that causes devastation" (v. 31) event cited by Jesus himself in reference to the Roman armies that destroyed Jerusalem and its temple - compare Matthew 24:15, 16
In theory if we had the certainty that "the Leader of the covenant" was Christ Jesus, we could assert that the verses that go from the 22 to the 31 cover a specific period of time, that is the one going from 33 to 70 E.V.
This, just like the book "Pay attention to Daniel's prophecies!" Would lead us to establish that the emperor of reference during the death of the Lord is Tiberius Caesar.
However, we must quote, in fairness, how this verse is translated into other biblical translations.
The "Revised" simply translates as "a leader of the alliance", the translation CEI, Jerusalem, New Diodati, and Luzzi translate "the leader of the alliance" and so do many others.
Only the Diodati and the New Revised translate "chief of the covenant" and "prince of the covenant".
Whatever is the most correct way to translate it, if we read carefully the verse and its context we understand that this person (whoever he is) is shattered in war and honestly we can not say that Our Lord was killed because of a war or guerrilla war he fomented.
Context logic takes precedence over probable translation.
In this discussion we will not be discussing the possible identity of this character not to get too far from the topic *** but as far as we know, at least for the moment, the hypotheses supporting "the Leader of the covenant" is Our Lord Jesus Christ they simply do not stand before evidence.
Although it is unquestionable that verse 31 refers to the destruction of the Temple as cited by the most authoritative Source of everyone, we can not assert the same for verse 22 which, on the contrary, could mention events that happened many years before.
If the next part is also in chronological order as it is obvious to think, the meaning becomes immediately clear because it tells us that he (ie the king of the north) "will lead to apostasy those who act evilly against the covenant" and this it is a reference to the apostasy of which Paul warned - Acts 20:29, 30; 2 Thessalonians 2: 7
If in fact this illegality was already at work in the first century, this prophecy does not necessarily come out of that period and writing is simply specifying that in the future these would have been the master.
Apostasy is fully formed and evident within the third century when "Christianity" becomes the state religion (so it was Rome that led them to apostasy exactly as the writing says) but it certainly did not appear out of nowhere.
As Paul warned, everything was already fermenting in the first century.
However, faithful Christians, that is, those who really knew their God (compare John 15:20, 21) "acted effectively" by remaining faithful until death and during their preaching work "imparted understanding to many" - Daniel 11:32 , 33; Acts 16: 5
All the historical reconstructions that come out of the state of Israel or the early Christians do not have the support of Scripture; on the contrary, the Scriptures clearly state that apostasy would no longer have any restraint with the death of the last apostle; Daniel is doing nothing more than to underline this prophecy by confirming what was said by the apostle Paul.
This conclusion further strengthens what we have already seen in the article dedicated to the restoration of true worship.
True adoration "disappears" with the apostles (those who understood) and since then no religious organization on earth has been able to define itself as "organization of God" but it will start from those who have an understanding exactly as in the first century.
At this point, always speaking of persecution, verse 35 tells us that this would continue "until the time of the end" and this is interesting because it indicates a continuity.
The writing does not say that the persecution would be restarted in the time of the end but that it would continue.
This suggests that those who have perspicacity have always existed, throughout human history, and have always been part of the same people.
Jesus in fact said to the Jews his disciples "I am with you every day until the end of the system of things" - Matthew 28:20
Even if we can not exclude that individual Christians of other nations and confessions have had, in the course of history, a certain perspicacity (as history would show), we remember that it is always from Israel that the true adoration must start again.
In Revelation, at the end of their preaching we see the woman "popping up", or the organization of God on earth, well recognizable and purified.
And here the "change of king" could be found between verse 35 and verse 36 in that, having previously mentioned the persecution until the time of the end, only from this moment onwards are we talking about events related to that time.
The verses ranging from 36 to 39 indeed recite: Â“Â“The king will do as he pleases, and he will exalt himself and magnify himself above every god; and against the God of gods+ he will speak astonishing things. And he will prove successful until the denunciation comes to a finish; because what is determined must take place. 37Â Â He will show no regard for the God of his fathers; nor will he show regard for the desire of women or for any other god, but he will magnify himself over everyone. 38Â Â But instead* he will give glory to the god of fortresses; to a god that his fathers did not know he will give glory by means of gold and silver and precious stones and desirable* things. 39Â Â He will act effectively against the most fortified strongholds, along with* a foreign god. He will give great glory to those who give him recognition,* and he will make them rule among many; and the ground he will apportion out* for a priceÂ”.
Therefore it is not necessary to look for innumerable kings of the north or south for the whole of human history because if we are not guided by our preconceptions, the Scriptures are clear.
Having therefore excluded those forced historical reconstructions that include Charlemagne, William I or Hitler, let us see how much this description remarks the words of the Lord, of the Apostle Paul and of the book Revelation - compare Daniel 7:11; Matthew 24:24; 2 Thessalonians 2: 3-12; Revelation 13: 11-14
The time of the end, in reference to the relationship with true Christians and Satan's attempt to divert them, is evident in these verses.
We have gone directly from the penultimate king of the north, Rome, to the "time of the end".
It will always be the king of the north, just as it happened in the past, to mislead false Christians and this time it will be completely manifest through the false prophet - Revelation 13: 11-14
Some poems coming from the Judean will have the task of restoring true worship but they will not be the only Christians, who will indeed be scattered all over the planet - compare Revelation 12:17
It will be these "Christians of the nations" who receive the persecution in the last period of the satanic system - compare Revelation 12:17
The verses from 40 onwards specify the events concerning the rivalry of the two kings, a subject that had been temporarily put aside to talk about Christians.
From what we have seen, therefore, it is not absolutely necessary to look for the respective kings, of the north and south, in that time frame in which Israel does not exist.
This allows us not only to remain consistent with the statue of Nebuchadnezzar that ends with the Roman Empire and then move to the last dominant empire as well as with the "fifth" horn of the goat, but also to better understand the meaning of some scriptures.
The people of God, the one that has never ceased to exist despite the persecution, will have an awakening and will be engaged, in the last days, to give an understanding to many.
The same will be done by those who will accept their message.
This reaffirms and thus reinforces what we have seen regarding true worship.
Understanding at what point we find ourselves in the fulfillment of the prophecy, we look forward to the next event (the last war between the king of the north and the king of the south) because, even if it is an expectation anything but happy, at that point we will know that Our Lord is really at the door and that will also be the moment to "raise our heads" - Mark 13:29, 30
* The mentioned articles can be found at the following links
** This means that from Aureliano on (mentioned in the book "Pay attention to Daniel's prophecies!" Starting on page 240) all the reconstructions would be wrong because absolutely arbitrary.
Between the emperor Vespasian and Trajan there are still the emperors Titus Flavio Vespasiano (79-81), Titus Flavius Domitian (81-96) and Marco Cocello Nerva (96-98).
*** Many exegetes and commentators believe that it is a reference to what happened in the period of Antiochus IV Epiphanes (which should also be the fifth horn of the goat) and Judas Maccabeus.
As explained in a previous article, regarding the chapter 8 of Daniel, the Scriptures simply do not corroborate and even demolish this hypothesis.
In fact it is not possible to identify Judas Maccabeus as the "Prince of the army" to whom the continuous sacrifices and other important details are removed.
In this regard, see the article entitled "Four Armageddon or just one?" In the following link http://attenzioneallaprofezia.blogspot.it/2017/09/quattro-armaghedon-o-uno-soltanto.html
However a common mistake was to make a parallel between these verses of chapter 8 and those of chapter 11.
While in chapter 8 we talk about the "Prince of the army of the heavens" to whom, among other things, we make continuous sacrifices and we also say that the adversary "reaches the heavens" and takes away the sacrifice to "His sanctuary "(His, of the Prince of the army) in chapter 11 we simply speak of a generic" leader of the alliance "and the context speaks of military skirmishes.
It is clear that the two subjects can not be compared and therefore it is by no means excluded that the hypotheses that detect Antioco IV, exclusively for chapter 11, can be corrected.
What is the Image of Daniel Mean? What Does it Mean Today? Hint: It is Now being crushed out of existence!By Bible Speaks
What is the Image of Daniel Mean? What Does it Mean Today? Hint: It is Now being crushed out of existence!
Read Daniel 2:44. “In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom+ that will never be destroyed. And this kingdom will not be passed on to any other people. It will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms, and it alone will stand forever.Â”
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