September 14, Daniel 7-9

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In the first year of King Belshazzar of Babylon, Daniel had a dream with visions in his mind(A) as he was lying in his bed. He wrote down the dream,(B) and here is the summary[a] of his account. Daniel said, “In my vision at night I was watching, and suddenly the four winds of heaven(C) stirred up the great sea. Four huge beasts(D) came up from the sea,(E) each different from the other.

“The first was like a lion(F) but had eagle’s wings. I continued watching until its wings were torn off. It was lifted up from the ground, set on its feet like a man, and given a human mind.

“Suddenly, another beast appeared, a second one, that looked like a bear.(G) It was raised up on one side, with three ribs in its mouth between its teeth. It was told, ‘Get up! Gorge yourself on flesh.’

“After this, while I was watching, suddenly another beast appeared. It was like a leopard(H) with four wings of a bird on its back. It had four heads,(I) and it was given dominion.

“After this, while I was watching in the night visions, suddenly a fourth beast(J) appeared, frightening and dreadful, and incredibly strong, with large iron teeth. It devoured and crushed, and it trampled with its feet whatever was left. It was different from all the beasts before it, and it had ten horns.(K)

“While I was considering the horns, suddenly another horn,(L) a little one, came up among them, and three of the first horns were uprooted before it. And suddenly in this horn there were eyes like the eyes of a human and a mouth that was speaking arrogantly.(M)

The Ancient of Days and the Son of Man

“As I kept watching,

thrones were set in place,(N)
and the Ancient of Days took his seat.
His clothing was white like snow,(O)
and the hair of his head like whitest wool.(P)
His throne was flaming fire;(Q)
its wheels were blazing fire.(R)
10 A river of fire was flowing,
coming out from his presence.
Thousands upon thousands(S) served him;
ten thousand times ten thousand(T)stood before him.
The court was convened,(U)
and the books were opened.(V)

11 “I watched, then, because of the sound of the arrogant words the horn was speaking. As I continued watching, the beast was killed and its body destroyed and given over to the burning fire.(W) 12 As for the rest of the beasts, their dominion was removed, but an extension of life was granted to them for a certain period of time.(X) 13 I continued watching in the night visions,

and suddenly one like a son of man(Y)
was coming with the clouds of heaven.(Z)
He approached the Ancient of Days
and was escorted before him.
14 He was given dominion(AA)
and glory and a kingdom,
so that those of every people,
nation, and language(AB)
should serve(AC) him.
His dominion is an everlasting(AD)dominion
that will not pass away,
and his kingdom is one
that will not be destroyed.

Interpretation of the Vision

15 “As for me, Daniel, my spirit was deeply distressed within me,[b] and the visions in my mind terrified me.(AE) 16 I approached one of those who were standing by and asked him(AF)to clarify all this. So he let me know the interpretation of these things:(AG) 17 ‘These huge beasts, four in number, are four kings who will rise from the earth. 18 But the holy ones of the Most High will receive the kingdom and possess it forever, yes, forever and ever.’(AH)

19 “Then I wanted to be clear about the fourth beast,(AI) the one different from all the others, extremely terrifying, with iron teeth and bronze claws, devouring, crushing, and trampling with its feet whatever was left. 20 I also wanted to know about the ten horns(AJ)on its head and about the other horn that came up, before which three fell—the horn that had eyes, and a mouth that spoke arrogantly,(AK) and that looked bigger than the others. 21 As I was watching, this horn waged war(AL) against the holy ones and was prevailing over them 22 until the Ancient of Days arrived and a judgment(AM) was given in favor of the holy ones of the Most High, for the time had come, and the holy ones took possession of the kingdom.

23 “This is what he said: ‘The fourth beast will be a fourth kingdom on the earth, different from all the other kingdoms. It will devour the whole earth, trample it down, and crush it. 24 The ten horns(AN) are ten kings who will rise from this kingdom. Another king, different from the previous ones, will rise after them and subdue three kings. 25 He will speak words against the Most High(AO) and oppress[c] the holy ones(AP) of the Most High. He will intend to change religious festivals[d]and laws,(AQ) and the holy ones will be handed over to him for a time, times, and half a time.[e](AR) 26 But the court will convene,(AS) and his dominion will be taken away, to be completely destroyed forever.(AT) 27 The kingdom, dominion, and greatness of the kingdoms under all of heaven will be given to the people, the holy ones of the Most High. His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom,(AU)and all rulers will serve and obey him.’

28 “This is the end of the account. As for me, Daniel, my thoughts terrified me greatly,(AV)and my face turned pale,[f] but I kept the matter to myself.”(AW

In the third year of King Belshazzar’s(A)reign, a vision appeared to me, Daniel, after the one that had appeared to me earlier.(B) I saw the vision, and as I watched, I was in the fortress city of Susa,(C) in the province of Elam.(D) I saw in the vision that I was beside the Ulai Canal. I looked up,[a] and there was a ram(E) standing beside the canal. He had two horns. The two horns were long, but one was longer than the other, and the longer one came up last. I saw the ram charging to the west, the north, and the south.(F) No animal could stand against him, and there was no rescue from his power. He did whatever he wanted(G) and became great.

As I was observing, a male goat appeared, coming from the west across the surface of the entire earth without touching the ground. The goat had a conspicuous horn[b] between his eyes.(H) He came toward the two-horned ram I had seen standing beside the canal and rushed at him with savage fury. I saw him approaching the ram, and infuriated with him, he struck the ram, breaking his two horns, and the ram was not strong enough to stand against him. The goat threw him to the ground and trampled him, and there was no one to rescue the ram from his power. Then the male goat acted even more arrogantly,(I)but when he became powerful, the large horn was broken.(J) Four conspicuous horns came up in its place, pointing toward the four winds of heaven.(K)

The Little Horn

From one of them a little horn(L) emerged and grew extensively toward the south and the east and toward the beautiful land.[c](M)10 It grew as high as the heavenly army, made some of the army and some of the stars[d] fall to the earth,(N) and trampled them.(O) 11 It acted arrogantly(P) even against the Prince of the heavenly army;(Q) it revoked his regular sacrifice(R) and overthrew the place of his sanctuary. 12 In the rebellion, the army was given up, together with the regular sacrifice. The horn threw truth to the ground and was successful(S) in what it did.

13 Then I heard a holy one speaking,(T) and another holy one said to the speaker, “How long will the events of this vision last(U)—the regular sacrifice, the rebellion that makes desolate, and the giving over of the sanctuary and of the army to be trampled?” (V)

14 He said to me,[e] “For 2,300 evenings and mornings; then the sanctuary will be restored.”

Interpretation of the Vision

15 While I, Daniel, was watching the vision and trying to understand it, there stood before me someone who appeared to be a man.(W) 16 I heard a human voice calling from the middle of the Ulai: “Gabriel,(X) explain the vision to this man.”

17 So he approached where I was standing; when he came near, I was terrified and fell facedown.(Y) “Son of man,” he said to me, “understand that the vision refers to the time of the end.”(Z) 18 While he was speaking to me, I fell into a deep sleep,(AA) with my face to the ground. Then he touched me, made me stand up,(AB) 19 and said, “I am here to tell you what will happen at the conclusion of the time of wrath, because it refers to the appointed time of the end.(AC) 20 The two-horned ram(AD)that you saw represents the kings of Media and Persia. 21 The shaggy goat represents the king of Greece, and the large horn between his eyes represents the first king.[f] 22 The four horns that took the place of the broken horn represent four kingdoms. They will rise from that nation, but without its power.

23 Near the end of their kingdoms,
when the rebels have reached
the full measure of their sin,[g](AE)
a ruthless[h] king, skilled in intrigue,[i]
will come to the throne.
24 His power will be great,
but it will not be his own.
He will cause outrageous destruction(AF)
and succeed in whatever he does.
He will destroy the powerful
along with the holy people.(AG)
25 He will cause deceit to prosper
through his cunning and by his influence,
and in his own mind he will exalt himself.
He will destroy many in a time of peace;
he will even stand against the Prince of princes.
Yet he will be broken—not by human hands.(AH)
26 The vision of the evenings and the mornings
that has been told is true.
Now you are to seal up the vision(AI)
because it refers to many days in the future.”

27 I, Daniel, was overcome and lay sick for days.(AJ) Then I got up and went about the king’s business.(AK) I was greatly disturbed by the vision and could not understand it.

In the first year of Darius,(A) the son of Ahasuerus, a Mede by birth, who was made king over the Chaldean kingdom— in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, understood from the books according to the word of the Lord to the prophet Jeremiah that the number of years for the desolation of Jerusalem would be seventy.(B) So I turned my attention to the Lord God to seek him by prayer and petitions, with fasting, sackcloth, and ashes.(C)

I prayed to the Lord my God and confessed:

Ah, Lord—the great and awe-inspiring God(D) who keeps his gracious covenant(E)with those who love him(F) and keep his commands(G)— we have sinned,(H) done wrong, acted wickedly, rebelled,(I) and turned away from your commands and ordinances.(J) We have not listened to your servants the prophets,(K) who spoke in your name to our kings, leaders, ancestors, and all the people of the land.

Lord, righteousness belongs to you,(L) but this day public shame belongs to us: the men of Judah, the residents of Jerusalem, and all Israel—those who are near and those who are far, in all the countries where you have banished them because of the disloyalty they have shown toward you. Lord, public shame(M) belongs to us, our kings, our leaders, and our ancestors, because we have sinned against you.(N)Compassion and forgiveness belong to the Lord our God, though we have rebelled against him 10 and have not obeyed the Lord our God by following his instructions that he set before us through his servants(O) the prophets.

11 All Israel has broken your law and turned away,(P) refusing to obey you. The promised curse[a] written in the law of Moses,(Q) the servant of God, has been poured out on us because we have sinned against him. 12 He has carried out his words(R) that he spoke against us and against our rulers[b](S) by bringing on us a disaster that is so great that nothing like what has been done to Jerusalem has ever been done(T) under all of heaven. 13 Just as it is written in the law of Moses,(U) all this disaster has come on us, yet we have not sought the favor of(V)the Lord our God by turning from our iniquities and paying attention to your truth.(W) 14 So the Lord kept the disaster in mind and brought it on us, for the Lord our God is righteous in all he has done. But we have not obeyed him.

15 Now, Lord our God—who brought your people out of the land of Egypt with a strong hand(X) and made your name renowned(Y) as it is this day—we have sinned, we have acted wickedly. 16 Lord, in keeping with all your righteous acts, may your anger and wrath(Z) turn away from your city Jerusalem, your holy mountain;(AA)for because of our sins and the iniquities of our ancestors, Jerusalem and your people have become an object of ridicule to all those around us.

17 Therefore, our God, hear the prayer and the petitions of your servant. Make your face shine(AB) on your desolate sanctuary(AC) for the Lord’s sake. 18 Listen closely,[c] my God, and hear. Open your eyes and see our desolations and the city that bears your name. For we are not presenting our petitions before you based on our righteous acts, but based on your abundant compassion. 19 Lord, hear! Lord, forgive! Lord, listen and act! My God, for your own sake, do not delay,(AD) because your city and your people bear your name.

The Seventy Weeks of Years

20 While I was speaking, praying, confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel,(AE) and presenting my petition before the Lord my God concerning the holy mountain of my God— 21 while I was praying, Gabriel,(AF) the man I had seen in the first vision,(AG) reached me in my extreme weariness, about the time of the evening offering.(AH) 22 He gave me this explanation: “Daniel, I’ve come now to give you understanding.(AI) 23 At the beginning of your petitions an answer went out, and I have come to give it, for you are treasured by God.[d](AJ) So consider the message and understand the vision:(AK)

24 Seventy weeks are decreed(AL)
about your people and your holy city—
to bring the rebellion to an end,
to put a stop to sin,
to atone for iniquity,
to bring in everlasting righteousness,(AM)
to seal up vision and prophecy,
and to anoint the most holy place.
25 Know and understand this:
From the issuing of the decree
to restore and rebuild Jerusalem(AN)
until an Anointed One,(AO) the ruler,[e]
will be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks.
It will be rebuilt with a plaza and a moat,
but in difficult times.
26 After those sixty-two weeks
the Anointed One will be cut off(AP)
and will have nothing.
The people of the coming ruler
will destroy the city(AQ) and the sanctuary.[f]
The[g] end will come with a flood,(AR)
and until the end there will be[h] war;
desolations are decreed.
27 He will make a firm covenant[i]
with many for one week,
but in the middle of the week
he will put a stop to sacrifice and offering.
And the abomination of desolation(AS)
will be on a wing(AT) of the temple[j][k]
until the decreed destruction(AU)
is poured out on the desolator.”

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