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ESV — Chronological: Day 261
261
Reading
Daniel 10-12

Daniel's Terrifying Vision of a Man

10 bIn the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a word was revealed to Daniel, cwho was named Belteshazzar. And dthe word was true, and it was a great conflict.1 And ehe understood the word and ehad understanding of the vision.

In those days I, Daniel, was mourning for fthree weeks. I ate no delicacies, no meat or wine entered my mouth, nor did I ganoint myself at all, for fthe full three weeks. On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I was standing hon the bank of the great river (ithat is, the Tigris) jI lifted up my eyes and looked, and behold, ka man clothed in linen, lwith a belt of fine mgold from Uphaz around his waist. His body was like nberyl, his face olike the appearance of lightning, phis eyes like flaming torches, his arms and qlegs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and qthe sound of his words like the sound of a multitude. rAnd I, Daniel, alone saw the vision, for the men who were with me did not see the vision, but a great trembling fell upon them, and they fled to hide themselves. So I was left alone and saw this great vision, and sno strength was left in me. My radiant appearance was fearfully changed,2 tand I retained no strength. Then I heard the sound of his words, uand as I heard the sound of his words, I fell on my face in deep sleep uwith my face to the ground.

10 And behold, va hand touched me and set me trembling on my hands and knees. 11 And he said to me, “O Daniel, wman greatly loved, xunderstand the words that I speak to you, and ystand upright, for znow I have been sent to you.” And when he had spoken this word to me, I stood up trembling. 12 Then he said to me, a“Fear not, Daniel, for from the first day that you bset your heart to understand and bhumbled yourself before your God, cyour words have been heard, dand I have come because of your words. 13 eThe prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me ftwenty-one days, but gMichael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I was left there with the kings of Persia, 14 dand came to make you understand what is to happen to your people hin the latter days. For ithe vision is for days yet to come.”

15 When he had spoken to me according to these words, jI turned my face toward the ground kand was mute. 16 And behold, lone in the likeness of the children of man mtouched my lips. Then I opened my mouth and spoke. I said to him who stood before me, “O my lord, by reason of the vision pains have come upon me, and nI retain no strength. 17 How can my lord's servant talk with my lord? For now no strength remains in me, and no breath is left in me.”

18 Again lone having the appearance of a man mtouched me and strengthened me. 19 And he said, o“O man greatly loved, pfear not, peace be with you; be strong and of good courage.” And as he spoke to me, I was strengthened and said, “Let my lord speak, for you have strengthened me.” 20 Then he said, “Do you know why I have come to you? But now I will return to fight against the qprince of Persia; and when I go out, behold, the prince of rGreece will come. 21 But I will tell you swhat is inscribed in the book of truth: there is none who contends by my side against these except tMichael, your prince.

The Kings of the South and the North

11 “And as for me, uin the first year of uDarius the Mede, I stood up to confirm and strengthen him.

“And now I will show you vthe truth. Behold, three more kings shall arise in Persia, and a fourth shall be far richer than all of them. And when he has become strong through his riches, he shall stir up all against the kingdom of Greece. Then wa mighty king shall arise, who shall rule with great dominion and xdo as he wills. And as soon as he has arisen, yhis kingdom shall be broken and divided ytoward the zfour winds of heaven, but anot to his posterity, nor according to the authority with which he ruled, for his kingdom shall be plucked up and go to others besides these.

“Then the king of the south shall be strong, but one of his princes shall be stronger than he band shall rule, and his authority shall be a great authority. After some years cthey shall make an alliance, and the daughter of the king of the south shall come to the king of the north to make an agreement. But she shall not retain the strength of her arm, and he and his arm shall not endure, but she shall be given up, and her attendants, he who fathered her, and he who supported3 her in those times.

“And from a branch from her roots one shall arise in his place. He shall come against the army and enter the dfortress of the king of the north, and he shall deal with them and shall prevail. He shall also carry off to Egypt their gods with their metal images and their precious evessels of silver and gold, and for some years he shall refrain from attacking the king of the north. Then the latter shall come into the realm of the king of the south but shall return to his own land.

10 “His sons shall wage war and assemble a multitude of great forces, which shall keep coming fand overflow and pass through, and again shall carry the war as far as his dfortress. 11 Then the king of the south, gmoved with rage, shall come out and fight against the king of the north. hAnd he shall raise a great multitude, but it shall be given into his hand. 12 And when the multitude is taken away, his heart shall be exalted, and he shall cast down tens of thousands, but he shall not prevail. 13 For the king of the north shall again iraise a multitude, greater than the first. And jafter some years4 he shall come on with a great army and abundant supplies.

14 “In those times many shall rise against the king of the south, and the violent among your own people shall lift themselves up in order to fulfill the vision, but kthey shall fail. 15 Then the king of the north shall come and lthrow up siegeworks and take a well-fortified city. And the forces of the south shall not stand, or even his best troops, for there shall be no strength to stand. 16 But he who comes against him shall mdo as he wills, and nnone shall stand before him. And he shall stand in othe glorious land, with destruction in his hand. 17 He shall pset his face to come with the strength of his whole kingdom, and he shall bring terms of an agreement and perform them. He shall give him the daughter of women to destroy the kingdom,5 but it shall not stand or be to his advantage. 18 Afterward he shall turn his face to the coastlands and shall capture many of them, but a commander shall put an end to his insolence. Indeed,6 he qshall turn his insolence back upon him. 19 Then he shall turn his face back toward the rfortresses of his own land, but he shall sstumble and fall, tand shall not be found.

20 “Then shall arise in his place one who shall send an uexactor of tribute for the glory of the kingdom. But within a few days he shall be broken, neither in anger nor in battle. 21 In his place shall arise a contemptible person to whom royal majesty has not been given. vHe shall come in without warning and obtain the kingdom wby flatteries. 22 Armies shall be xutterly swept away before him and broken, even the prince of the covenant. 23 And from the time that an alliance is made with him he shall act deceitfully, and he shall become strong with a small people. 24 yWithout warning he shall come into zthe richest parts7 of the province, and he shall do what neither his fathers nor his fathers' fathers have done, scattering among them plunder, spoil, and goods. He shall devise plans against strongholds, but only for a time. 25 And he shall stir up his power and his heart against athe king of the south with a great army. And the king of the south shall wage war with an exceedingly great and mighty army, but he shall not stand, for plots shall be devised against him. 26 Even those who eat his food shall break him. His army shall be bswept away, and many shall fall down slain. 27 And as for the two kings, their hearts shall be bent on doing evil. They shall speak lies at the same table, but to no avail, for cthe end is yet to be at the time appointed. 28 And he shall return to his land with great wealth, but his heart shall be set against the holy covenant. And he shall work his will and return to his own land.

29 “At the time appointed he shall return and come into the south, but it shall not be this time as it was before. 30 For ships of dKittim shall come against him, and he shall be afraid and withdraw, and shall turn back and ebe enraged and etake action against the holy covenant. He shall turn back and pay attention to those who forsake the holy covenant. 31 Forces from him shall appear and fprofane the temple and fortress, and shall take away the regular burnt offering. And gthey shall set up the abomination that makes desolate. 32 He shall seduce with flattery those who violate the covenant, but the people who know their God shall stand firm and take action. 33 hAnd the wise among the people shall make many understand, though for some days they shall stumble by sword and flame, by captivity and plunder. 34 When they stumble, they shall receive a little help. And many shall join themselves to them with flattery, 35 and some of the wise shall stumble, so that they may be refined, ipurified, and jmade white, until kthe time of the end, kfor it still awaits the appointed time.

36 “And the king shall ldo as he wills. mHe shall exalt himself and magnify himself above every god, nand shall speak astonishing things against othe God of gods. pHe shall prosper qtill the indignation is accomplished; for what is decreed shall be done. 37 He shall pay no attention to the gods of his fathers, or to the one beloved by women. He shall not pay attention to any other god, for mhe shall magnify himself above all. 38 He shall honor the god of fortresses instead of these. A god whom his fathers did not know he shall honor rwith gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. 39 He shall deal with the strongest fortresses with the help of a foreign god. Those who acknowledge him he shall load with honor. He shall make them rulers over many and sshall divide the land for a price.8

40 t“At the time of the end, the king of the south shall attack9 him, but the king of the north shall rush upon him ulike a whirlwind, with chariots and horsemen, and with many ships. And he shall come into countries and vshall overflow and pass through. 41 He shall come into wthe glorious land. And tens of thousands shall fall, but these shall be delivered out of his hand: xEdom and xMoab and the main part of the xAmmonites. 42 He shall stretch out his hand against the countries, and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 43 He shall become ruler of the treasures of gold and of silver, and all the precious things of Egypt, and the yLibyans and the zCushites shall follow in his train. 44 But news from the east and the north shall alarm him, and he shall go out with great fury to destroy and devote many to destruction. 45 And he shall pitch his palatial tents between the sea and the glorious holy mountain. Yet he shall come to his end, with none to help him.

The Time of the End

12 “At that time shall arise aMichael, the great prince who has charge of your people. And bthere shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was a nation till that time. But at that time your people shall be delivered, ceveryone whose name shall be found written in the book. And many of those who dsleep in ethe dust of the earth shall eawake, fsome to everlasting life, and fsome to shame and everlasting contempt. gAnd those who are wise hshall shine like the brightness of the sky above;10 and ithose who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever. But you, Daniel, jshut up the words and kseal the book, until lthe time of the end. mMany shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.”

Then I, Daniel, looked, and behold, two others stood, one on nthis bank of the stream and one on that bank of the stream. And someone said to othe man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the stream,11 p“How long shall it be till the end of these wonders?” And I heard othe man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the stream; qhe raised his right hand and his left hand toward heaven and rswore by him who lives forever that it would be for a stime, times, and half a time, and that when the shattering of tthe power of tthe holy people comes to an end all these things would be finished. I heard, ubut I did not understand. Then I said, “O my lord, what shall be the outcome of these things?” He said, v“Go your way, Daniel, wfor the words are shut up and sealed until the time of the end. 10 xMany shall purify themselves and make themselves white and be refined, but ythe wicked shall act wickedly. And none of the wicked shall understand, gbut those who are wise shall understand. 11 And from the time that zthe regular burnt offering is taken away and athe abomination that makes desolate is set up, there shall be 1,290 days. 12 bBlessed is he who waits and arrives at the 1,335 days. 13 cBut go your way till the end. dAnd you shall rest and shall stand in your allotted place at ethe end of the days.”

Footnotes

[1] 10:1 Or and it was about a great conflict
[2] 10:8 Hebrew My splendor was changed to ruin
[3] 11:6 Or obtained
[4] 11:13 Hebrew at the end of the times
[5] 11:17 Hebrew her, or it
[6] 11:18 The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain
[7] 11:24 Or among the richest men
[8] 11:39 Or land as payment
[9] 11:40 Hebrew thrust at
[10] 12:3 Hebrew the expanse; compare Genesis 1:6–8
[11] 12:6 Or who was upstream; also verse 7