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Daniel Chapter 8
Based on the American Standard Version of 1901
by Charles Dailey

(Black underlined words match words in the Bible text.)
This chapter expands the visions of chapters two and seven. Chronologically, it was before the fall of Belshazzar in chapter 5.
1) In the third year of the reign of king Belshazzar a vision appeared unto me, even unto me, Daniel, after that which appeared unto me at the first. The text is in Hebrew from here to the end. The visions no longer relate to Babylon and so its diplomatic language is not used. The text related to Israel, Daniel's people.
2) And I saw in the vision; now it was so, that when I saw, I was in Shushan the palace, which is in the province of Elam; and I saw in the vision, and I was by the river Ulai. In Daniel's vision, he was in a city 250 miles east of Babylon and in a palace which may not have been built yet. This is probably the same palace referred to in Esther. In reality, Daniel was still living in Babylon.
3) Then I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram which had two horns: and the two horns were high; but one was higher than the other, and the higher came up last. Like the vision presented in the last chapter, the historical truth is presented by the use of animals enhanced to convey certain truths.
- Daniel saw a ram with two horns, but one was higher than the other. The angel Gabriel explained that these horns were the kings of Media and Persia. Vs. 20.
4) I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward, and southward; and no beasts could stand before him, neither was there any that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and magnified himself. The Medo-Persian empire could not be stopped. The map on Chapter 7, page 4 shows that the empire nearly reached to Athens on the west, Egypt on the south and the Aral Sea on the north. It was the largest world kingdom to date.
5) And as I was considering, behold, a he-goat came from the west over the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes. Daniel was thinking over the meaning of this rambunctious ram when a galloping goat appeared out of the west.
- This goat traveled so fast it didn't look like it touched the ground. Verse 21 shows it to be a Greek goat and the notable horn is explained as the first king.
6) And he came to the ram that had the two horns, which I saw standing before the river, and ran upon him in the fury of his power. Galloping goat encounters rambunctious ram.
7) And I saw him come close unto the ram, and he was moved with anger against him, and smote the ram, and brake his two horns; and there was no power in the ram to stand before him; but he cast him down to the ground, and trampled upon him; and there was none that could deliver the ram out of his hand. For added drama, the galloping goat rammed the ram and broke off its horns.
- The national emblem of Greece was a goat and is found on ancient Greek coins. The ancient capital of Macedonia was called Aegae - the goat city. The waters next to Greece was called the Aegean, or "Goat Sea.''
8) And the he-goat magnified himself exceedingly: and when he was strong, the great horn was broken; and instead of it there came up four notable horns toward the four winds of heaven. This was one self-glorifying Greek goat. "...whereupon he was exalted and his heart was lifted up." 1 Maccabees 1:3 on page 4.
- But the strong horn was soon broken and replaced by four lesser horns going four different directions.
9) And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the glorious land. A little horn developed out of one of the four horns of verse 8.
- This little horn related to the glorious land, a common way of referring to the land of Israel. The Jewish reader would understand.
10) And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and some of the host and of the stars it cast down to the ground, and trampled upon them. This was a little horn, but talked big.
- The description given here and in subsequent verses of this chapter is so definite and specific that the "little horn" here can be no other than Antiochus IV (Epiphanes) and his immediate predecessors (The Seleucids). Ptolemy I, one of the four who succeeded Alexander to his empire, appointed Seleucus Nicator (312-280 B.C.) to administer Syria for him. - Paul Butler.
- The Message says: "It humiliated heaven's army and dishonored its leader by keeping him from offering the daily sacrifices. In fact, it was so terrible that it even disgraced the temple and wiped out true worship. It also did everything else it wanted to do." 11-12.
11) Yea, it magnified itself, even to the prince of the host; and it took away from him the continual burnt-offering, and the place of his sanctuary was cast down. continual items like burnt offering, lighting of lamps, and others routines of temple worship.
12) And the host was given over to it together with the continual burnt-offering through transgression; and it cast down truth to the ground, and it did its pleasure and prospered. See 1 Maccabees1:41-43
13) Then I heard a holy one speaking; and another holy one said unto that certain one who spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the continual burnt-offering, and the transgression that maketh desolate, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?
14) And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred evenings and mornings; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed. The period (2300 days) are undoubtedly referring to the period of Antiochus' abominable treatment of the Jews. This began in the year 171 B.C., one year before his return from his second expedition to Egypt. In this year began the laying waste of the sanctuary. The termination would then be the death of Antiochus (164 B.C.). The 2300 days cover a period of six years and about 4 months. - Paul Butler
15) And it came to pass, when I, even I Daniel, had seen the vision, that I sought to understand it; and, behold, there stood before me as the appearance of a man. It was important for Daniel to understand the visions. One appearing like a man appeared to him.
- Some believe this was the second person of the Godhead.
16) And I heard a man's voice between the banks of the Ulai, which called, and said, Gabriel, make this man to understand the vision. This personality who appeared was able to command the angel Gabriel.
- The book of Daniel is the only Old Testament book where angels are named.
17) So he came near where I stood; and when he came, I was affrighted, and fell upon my face: but he said unto me, Understand, O son of man; for the vision belongeth to the time of the end. Gabriel came near.
- The time of the end may well be the end of the captivity and the end of the history period covered by this billy goat. It could not be the end of time as we think of it.
18) Now as he was speaking with me, I fell into a deep sleep with my face toward the ground; but he touched me, and set me upright. The vision was emotionally draining for Daniel and he wanted to sleep, but that was not to be.
19) And he said, Behold, I will make thee know what shall be in the latter time of the indignation; for it belongeth to the appointed time of the end. The Message translation is informative here: "And then he continued, I want to tell you what is going to happen as the judgment days of wrath wind down, for there is going to be an end to all this.'"
20) The ram which thou sawest, that had the two horns, they are the kings of Media and Persia.
21) And the rough he-goat is the king of Greece: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king. "And it happened, after that Alexander son of Philip, the Macedonian, who came out of the land of Chettiim, had smitten Darius king of the Persians and Medes, that he reigned in his stead, the first over Greece . . ." 1Mac 1:1
22) And as for that which was broken, in the place whereof four stood up, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not with his power. See 1 Maccabees 1:6.
23) And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up. "And after his death they all put crowns upon themselves; so did their sons after them many years: and evils were multiplied in the earth." 1:9
- "And there came out of them a wicked root Antiochus surnamed Epiphanes, son of Antiochus the king, who had been an hostage at Rome, and he reigned in the hundred and thirty and seventh year of the kingdom of the Greeks." 1:10
24) And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power; and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper and do his pleasure; and he shall destroy the mighty ones and the holy people.
25) And through his policy he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and in their security shall he destroy many: he shall also stand up against the prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand. "And after that Antiochus had smitten Egypt, he returned again in the hundred forty and third year, and went up against Israel and Jerusalem with a great multitude . . ." 1:20
- "And entered proudly into the sanctuary, and took away the golden altar, and the candlestick of light, and all the vessels thereof . . ." 1:21 (See paragraph below)
26) And the vision of the evenings and mornings which hath been told is true: but shut thou up the vision; for it belongeth to many days to come. The Message: "This vision about the evenings and mornings is true, but these things won't happen for a long time, so don't tell it to others. 27 After this, I was so worn out and weak that it was several days before I could get out of bed and go about my duties for the king. I was disturbed by this vision that made no sense to me."
27) And I, Daniel, fainted, and was sick certain days; then I rose up, and did the king's business: and I wondered at the vision, but none understood it. There was a price for seeing into the future. Daniel was ill for a few days.
- Even though Belshazzar did not know him, Daniel was in government service.
We had to include this: He (Antiochus), hearing that the Jews had cast the image of Jupiter Olympius out of the temple, where he had placed it, was so enraged at the Jews that he vowed he would make Jerusalem a common burial-place, and determined to march thither immediately; but no sooner had he spoken these proud words than he was struck with an incurable plague in his bowels; worms bred so fast in his body that whole flakes of flesh sometimes dropped from him; his torments were violent, and the stench of his disease such that none could endure to come near him. He continued in this misery very long. At first he persisted in his menaces against the Jews; but at length, despairing of his recovery, he called his friends together, and acknowledged all those miseries to have fallen upon him for the injuries he had done to the Jews and his profaning the temple at Jerusalem. Then he wrote courteous letters to the Jews, and vowed that if he recovered he would let them have the free exercise of their religion. But, finding his disease grow upon him, when he could no longer endure his own smell, he said, It is meet to submit to God, and for man who is mortal not to set himself in competition with God, and so died miserably in a strange land, on the mountains of Pacata near Babylon: so Ussher's Annals, A.M. 3840, about 160 years before the birth of Christ. (from Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Whole Bible: New Modern Edition, Electronic Database. Copyright (c) 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)
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1 Maccabees
1 Maccabees was probably written about 100 BC, after the restoration of an independent Jewish kingdom. It tells the story of the conquest of Palestine by the Greeks under Alexander the Great, the attempt by the Greeks to impose Greek culture on the Jews.

1Mac 1:1 And it happened, after that Alexander son of Philip, the Macedonian, who came out of the land of Chettiim, had smitten Darius king of the Persians and Medes, that he reigned in his stead, the first over Greece,
1:2 And made many wars, and won many strong holds, and slew the kings of the earth,
1:3 And went through to the ends of the earth, and took spoils of many nations, insomuch that the earth was quiet before him; whereupon he was exalted and his heart was lifted up.
1:4 And he gathered a mighty strong host and ruled over countries, and nations, and kings, who became tributaries unto him.
1:5 And after these things he fell sick, and perceived that he should die.
1:6 Wherefore he called his servants, such as were honourable, and had been brought up with him from his youth, and parted his kingdom among them, while he was yet alive.
1:7 So Alexander reigned twelves years, and then died.
1:8 And his servants bare rule every one in his place.
1:9 And after his death they all put crowns upon themselves; so did their sons after them many years: and evils were multiplied in the earth.
1:10 And there came out of them a wicked root Antiochus surnamed Epiphanes, son of Antiochus the king, who had been an hostage at Rome, and he reigned in the hundred and thirty and seventh year of the kingdom of the Greeks.
1:11 In those days went there out of Israel wicked men, who persuaded many, saying, Let us go and make a covenant with the heathen that are round about us: for since we departed from them we have had much sorrow.
1:12 So this device pleased them well.
1:13 Then certain of the people were so forward herein, that they went to the king, who gave them licence to do after the ordinances of the heathen:
1:14 Whereupon they built a place of exercise at Jerusalem according to the customs of the heathen:
1:15 And made themselves uncircumcised, and forsook the holy covenant, and joined themselves to the heathen, and were sold to do mischief.
1:16 Now when the kingdom was established before Antiochus, he thought to reign over Egypt that he might have the dominion of two realms.
1:17 Wherefore he entered into Egypt with a great multitude, with chariots, and elephants, and horsemen, and a great navy,
1:18 And made war against Ptolemee king of Egypt: but Ptolemee was afraid of him, and fled; and many were wounded to death.
1:19 Thus they got the strong cities in the land of Egypt and he took the spoils thereof.
1:21 And entered proudly into the sanctuary, and took away the golden altar, and the candlestick of light, and all the vessels thereof,
1:22 And the table of the shewbread, and the pouring vessels, and the vials. and the censers of gold, and the veil, and the crown, and the golden ornaments that were before the temple, all which he pulled off.
1:23 He took also the silver and the gold, and the precious vessels: also he took the hidden treasures which he found.
1:24 And when he had taken all away, he went into his own land, having made a great massacre, and spoken very proudly.
1:25 Therefore there was a great mourning in Israel, in every place where they were;
1:26 So that the princes and elders mourned, the virgins and young men were made feeble, and the beauty of women was changed.
1:27 Every bridegroom took up lamentation, and she that sat in the marriage chamber was in heaviness,
1:28 The land also was moved for the inhabitants thereof, and all the house of Jacob was covered with confusion.
1:29 And after two years fully expired the king sent his chief collector of tribute unto the cities of Juda, who came unto Jerusalem with a great multitude,
1:30 And spake peaceable words unto them, but all was deceit: for when they had given him credence, he fell suddenly upon the city, and smote it very sore, and destroyed much people of Israel.
1:31 And when he had taken the spoils of the city, he set it on fire, and pulled down the houses and walls thereof on every side.
1:32 But the women and children took they captive, and possessed the cattle.
1:33 Then builded they the city of David with a great and strong wall, and with mighty towers, and made it a strong hold for them.
1:34 And they put therein a sinful nation, wicked men, and fortified themselves therein.
1:35 They stored it also with armour and victuals, and when they had gathered together the spoils of Jerusalem, they laid them up there, and so they became a sore snare:
1:36 For it was a place to lie in wait against the sanctuary, and an evil adversary to Israel.
1:37 Thus they shed innocent blood on every side of the sanctuary, and defiled it:
1:38 Insomuch that the inhabitants of Jerusalem fled because of them: whereupon the city was made an habitation of strangers, and became strange to those that were born in her; and her own children left her.
1:39 Her sanctuary was laid waste like a wilderness, her feasts were turned into mourning, her sabbaths into reproach her honour into contempt.
1:40 As had been her glory, so was her dishonour increased, and her excellency was turned into mourning.
1:41 Moreover king Antiochus wrote to his whole kingdom, that all should be one people,
1:42 And every one should leave his laws: so all the heathen agreed according to the commandment of the king.
1:43 Yea, many also of the Israelites consented to his religion, and sacrificed unto idols, and profaned the sabbath.
1:44 For the king had sent letters by messengers unto Jerusalem and the cities of Juda that they should follow the strange laws of the land,
1:45 And forbid burnt offerings, and sacrifice, and drink offerings, in the temple; and that they should profane the sabbaths and festival days: 1:46 And pollute the sanctuary and holy people:
1:47 Set up altars, and groves, and chapels of idols, and sacrifice swine's flesh, and unclean beasts:
1:48 That they should also leave their children uncircumcised, and make their souls abominable with all manner of uncleanness and profanation:
1:49 To the end they might forget the law, and change all the ordinances.
1:50 And whosoever would not do according to the commandment of the king, he said, he should die.
1:51 In the selfsame manner wrote he to his whole kingdom, and appointed overseers over all the people, commanding the cities of Juda to sacrifice, city by city.
1:52 Then many of the people were gathered unto them, to wit every one that forsook the law; and so they committed evils in the land;
1:53 And drove the Israelites into secret places, even wheresoever they could flee for succour.
1:54 Now the fifteenth day of the month Casleu, in the hundred forty and fifth year, they set up the abomination of desolation upon the altar, and builded idol altars throughout the cities of Juda on every side;
1:55 And burnt incense at the doors of their houses, and in the streets.
1:56 And when they had rent in pieces the books of the law which they found, they burnt them with fire.
1:57 And whosoever was found with any the book of the testament, or if any committed to the law, the king's commandment was, that they should put him to death.
1:58 Thus did they by their authority unto the Israelites every month, to as many as were found in the cities.
1:59 Now the five and twentieth day of the month they did sacrifice upon the idol altar, which was upon the altar of God.
1:60 At which time according to the commandment they put to death certain women, that had caused their children to be circumcised.
1:61 And they hanged the infants about their necks, and rifled their houses, and slew them that had circumcised them.
1:62 Howbeit many in Israel were fully resolved and confirmed in themselves not to eat any unclean thing.
1:63 Wherefore the rather to die, that they might not be defiled with meats, and that they might not profane the holy covenant: so then they died.
1:64 And there was very great wrath upon Israel.

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