Welcome to our study on “Conflicts to Come – Daniel Chapter 11”
In this study we will break down chapter 11 of the book of Daniel and look at five different personalities or kings that he predicted would come onto the world stage. Four of which have already come and gone, and one is yet to come.
Actually, what the prophet Daniel gave us in chapter 11 was so accurate, that many scholars believed that this chapter must have been written ‘after’ these events took place, and then just added to the book later. But because there is no indication of this anywhere in order to verify this claim, and since the rest of Daniel, like chapter 11, is prophetic in nature, we conclude that this chapter was written by Daniel himself to prepare us for these great events.
Daniel was one of the many Jews that were taken into captivity by the Babylonian Empire, but at this point in chapter 11, the Babylonian Empire had already been conquered by the Persian Empire which Daniel was now serving.
Now lets look at the five personalities of this chapter.
- Ahasuerus (Daniel 11:2)
The first personality we see is in Daniel 11:2, where Daniel predicted that four additional kings will arise in Persia, but the fourth king will become richer and stronger that the previous three. This king will then cause the entire Persian Empire to wage war with Greece, ultimately ending in defeat. This fourth king was King Ahasuerus, the same king that the young Jewish women Esther, from the book of Esther, eventually married.
2. Alexander the Great (Daniel 11:3-Daniel 11:4)
The second personality comes in the very next verse, where it speaks about how a mighty king will arise with ‘great’ authority. Then in verse 4, Daniel makes an undeniable statement that points this personality directly to the famous Alexander the Great. This verse says that as soon as he arises, his kingdom will be broken up and split into four parts. Alexander the Great was only 21 years old when he came into power and he conquered the known world at the time in only 11 years. At the age of 32, Alexander the Great died to which his entire kingdom was then divided between his four generals and became four separate empires.
3. Antiochus III the Great (Daniel 11:5-Daniel 11:20)
Antiochus III the Great was the 6th ruler of the Seleucid Empire (one of the four divided empires after the fall of Alexander the Great) which is in now-a-day Syria. This passage gives a detailed account of this king known in this chapter as the king of the North (Syria) who campaigned agains the king of the South (Egypt).
4. Antiochus Epiphanes (Daniel 11:21-Daniel 11:35)
This passage gives us the account of Antiochus Epiphanes, the son of Antiochus the Great. He gave himself the name ephiphanes, meaning god-manifest, and later was given the name epimanes (madman) due to his attempts to suppress the Jewish people. Notable events during his reign include his near-conquest of Egypt (king of the South), his persecution of the Jews and the abomination of desolation, and the rebellion of the Jewish Maccabees.
His near-conquest of Egypt is recorded in Daniel 11:25-Daniel 11:29, where it says that he will wage war with the king of the South but his conquest will ultimately end in defeat. Then in Daniel 11:30, it says that Antiochus will start to return back to Syria, but then makes a stop in Jerusalem, and in his anger, oppresses the Jewish people. Tradition says that during his time in Jerusalem, Antiochus Epiphanes then took a pig into the Temple of God, and slaughtered it on the alter, ultimately desecrating the Temple. This is known as the abomination of desolation (Daniel 11:31) and is to be a precursor of the abomination of desolation recorded in Daniel 9:27, which will take place during the future seven year Tribulation Period.
Daniel 11:32 goes on to say that the people who “know their God will display strength and take action.” These are the Maccabee family, who refused to bow down to Antiochus and then waged a three year campaign against his army known as the Maccabee War. They were eventually successful in driving Antiochus out of Jerusalem, after which they reconsecrated the Temple. Tradition says that they only had enough oil to light the menorah for one day, yet it stayed lit for eight days, enough time in order to get additional oil for the Temple. The Jewish people celebrate this event today known as Hanukkah.
5. The Anti-Christ (Daniel 11:36-Daniel 11:45)
This first verse in Daniel 11:36 gives a perfect description of the future Anti-Christ who will eventually make his way onto the world scene after the Rapture of the Church. Additionally, this verse gives us one of his many names (the willful king) and confirms that he will “prosper until the indignation is finished“, indicating his unrestricted power during the Tribulation Period.
Daniel 11:45 also confirms that it will be the Anti-Christ who will allow, or at least make available, the rebuilding of the third Temple on the Temple in Jerusalem as spoken by the apostle Paul in 2 Thessalonians 2:3-2 Thessalonians 2:4. The term “pitch his tents of his royal pavilion between the seas” is referring to the building of the Temple between the Sea of Galilee to the north, the Mediterranean Sea to the west, and the Dead Sea to the east. This verse also states that the Anti-Christ will come to his end, which will be his defeat at the hands of Jesus Christ.
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And always remember, why is it important to study Bible prophecy? Because never have we been closer than today..