And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.
Verses 1-13. - THE LAST THINGS. Verse 1. - And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standsth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time; and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. The rendering of the Septuagint is "And unto that place shall come Michael the archangel, who standeth over (ἐπὶ) the children of thy people; that day shall be a day of affliction, such as was not from the day when they were [presumably the Jews as a nation] till that day, and in that day every people shall be exalted whose name is found written in the book," reading עם כֹל instead of עמּ כֹלאּ. Theodotion's rendering is, "In that time shall stand up Michael, the great prince that standeth for the children of thy people, and it shall be a time of affliction such as there has not been since there was a nation upon the earth till that time: in that time shall thy people be saved, every one who is written in the book." The Peshitta rendering is, "At that time shall stand up Michael, the great angel who is overseer over the children of thy people, and it shall be a time of affliction such as has not been from the days of eternity; there shall be delivered of the children of thy people every one who is found written in the book." The rendering of the Vulgate is in close agreement with the Massoretic text. The difference in the first clause between the text of the Septuagint and that represented by the Massoretic text and that of the versions which follow it is of importance. It is hardly possible to suggest any Hebrew word for the place which can have been suggested by עֵת, the word used here for "time." Both versions of the clause look like attempts to supply a link of connection which was awanting in the text before them. This supports our idea that the eleventh chapter is mainly an interpolation. It would seem that the Septuagint translator had before him a text having some derivative possibly of סלל, perhaps in the passive of the pilpel, which has no extant example. And at that time. The connection would naturally imply the time of the destruction of the oppressor - the king of the south. When he was cut off "without a helper" would be a time one would expect of joy, not of affliction. It may refer to the coming of the oppressor from Egypt with "great rage." If that produced the great affliction, what is the result of Michael's standing up? It seems as if the connection here were hopelessly broken; some dislocation has occurred. Michael the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people (see Daniel 10:21). "Thy people," this pronominal suffix only occurs once in the previous chapter, in the fourteenth verse, in a clause that does not harmonize with the context - a clause that we think is a portion of the missing vision of Daniel. Shall stand up. This, taken in connection with his function, means he shall come for the help of Israel. And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation. This is certainly not what might be expected to result from Michael arising for the deliverance of the people of God. It certainly may be intended to explain the fact that Michael does "stand up." But in the succeeding verses we have no account of special deliverance being given to Israel. The natural meaning of this would be that from the time that Israel began to be a nation there had not been such affliction. It might mean that never since there were nations had there been such a persecution. Father of these interpretations would be true. Never in the history of Israel had there been such a persecution, because the attempt to force the people to worship Jupiter was met by a far fiercer resistance than that which met Jezebel's attempt to make Israel worshippers of Baal. The people were not then so permeated with love and honour to Jehovah as they were now. Further, there was more kindred between Baal-worship and that of Jehovah originally than between the latter and the worship of Jupiter. Baal means simply" Lord," and Jehovah seems to have been worshipped under that title (Hosea 2:16). A collateral proof of this is the fact that Saul named one of his sons after "Baal" - Eshbaal (equivalent to Ishbosheth), 1 Chronicles 8:33; and Jonathan also named his son from Baal - Meribaal (equivalent to Mephibesheth), 1 Chronicles 8:34. The plea might thus be advanced that Baal-worship was a revival of an ancient cult. Hence the persecution, severe as it was, would not be so severe as tinder Antiochus. Yet, again, the Greek intellect, keen and polished as it was, could persecute in a way more thorough and complete. If fiercer persecution for religious views could not have been at any earlier time in Jewish history, in no other country would there have been any persecution at all, because there would have been no resist-ante to the will of the monarch. Our Lord, in Matthew 24:21, has this passage in mind, and uses terms borrowed from it to describe the sufferings to be endured by the Jews at the hands of the Romans. when Jerusalem shall be besieged and taken. It is to be observed that while in Daniel the comparison is only with the past, in Matthew there is added a reference to the future, "No, nor ever shall be." Nothing, then, shall equal the appalling horrors of the siege and sack of Jerusalem. And at that time thy people shall be delivered. The mere fact of deliverance is mentioned, but the nature of the deliverance is not indicated there; cessation of persecution would not be deliverance, for only Israel was persecuted. The application of the phrases of our Lord have a totally different reference - the Jews perished, the Christians were delivered. There is here another evidence of dislocation. Every one that shall be found written in the book. There seems to be a faint reminiscence of this in Philippians 4:3, and a clearer in Revelation 13:8. Although "books" is here referred to, and referred to also in Daniel 10:21, yet the "books" are different. The "book" in the tenth chapter contains presumably an account beforehand of all that is to happen. This book is, so to speak, a register of the names of those who should stand through the fiery trial that was to try them and maintain their faithfulness. It is to be noted that the Septuagint makes this refer not to individuals, but to nations whose names shall be found written in the book. There seems nothing to justify such a reading.
And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.
Verse 2. - And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. The Septuagint rendering is, "And many that sleep in the breadth (πλάτει) of the earth shall arise, some to life eternal, and some to reproach, some to dispersion (διασπορὰν) and eternal shame." These terms, "reproach" and "dispersion," are different attempts to render חֲרָפות (haraphoth), "reproaches." The differences between the above and Theodotion are merely verbal; "dispersion" is omitted, χώματι, "dust," is instead of πλάτει, The rendering of the Peshitta is, "And many of those that sleep in the dust shall awake, some to life everlasting, and some to destruction and contempt of their friends for ever." The Vulgate has a somewhat singular version of the last clause, "And many that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to life eternal, and some to contempt, in order that they may always see it (ut videant semper)." Many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth. Sleep, as a symbol of death, is frequent, both in the Old Testament and the New: Psalm 13:3; Job 3:13; for the New Testament, Acts 7:60; 1 Corinthians 15:6. "Dust" is a common phrase for the grave: Job 7:21; Psalm 22:30; Psalm 30:10; Genesis 3:19. The reference here is to those who are not only dead, but buried. The phrase translated, "dust of the earth," literally means "earth of dust." The phrase is so singular that Professor Robertson Smith has suggested that instead of reading 'admath 'aphar, we should read 'armath 'aphar - aram in Arabic meaning a "cairn" or "mound." There is, however, as Professor Bevan remarks, no instance in Hebrew or Aramaic of such a word being in use. It is assumed that the reference here (Behrmann, etc.) is to the Jews alone; but for this assumption there is no justification. While, on the one hand, one cannot prove from this that others besides Israel shall partake in the resurrection; on the other, as little can we assert that "the Jews," at the period when this verse was written, excluded all but Jews. We cannot deduce that" many" here excludes "all." The idea suggested is rather multitudinousness. Shall awake, sores to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. This is a distinct reference to the resurrection of the body; it is those that "sleep in the dust" that shall thus "awake." It is to be noted that at the resurrection the condition of each is fixed frailly - it is to "everlasting life" and "over-lasting contempt" This resurrection is individual, not national, as shown by the contrasted fates. The doctrine of the resurrection is thus clearly stated. There is no need to examine how much the Jews of the time of the Maccabees understood of this doctrine. Isaiah 26:14-19, as clearly as does this passage, proclaims the same belief. Ezekiel 37:1-14 shows that resurrection was to the Israelites not such an incongruous or impossible idea as it was to the Greeks. But when is this? We might be led by the juxtaposition of this to the account of the sufferings of the Jews under Antiochus, to think that the writer believed the end of the world would take place immediately on the fall of Antiochus. But in the first place we must remember that we have not the vision given to Daniel; it has been replaced by the eleventh chapter. Further, the method of prophecy must be borne in mind. The future was made known in vision. If, as seems probable, distance in space from the apparent standpoint of the prophet represented distance in time from his actual or assumed chronological position, then, if the description of the vision proceeded from one side of the picture to the other, those things would be in close juxtaposition which were to be far removed from each other chronologically. Thus an astronomer may place in the same constellation stars inconceivably distant from each other - nay, may even unite as one binary star two suns, the one nearer the earth than the other by thousands of millions of miles. So our Lord correlates the destruction of Jerusalem with the end of the world. Moreover, the misery endured by the Jewish saints under Antiochus was a type of the sufferings of the people of God of every age.
And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.
Verse 3. - And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever. The rendering of the LXX. differs from this considerably, "Those who understand shall appear as the lights of heaven, and those that confirm my word as the stars of heaven for ever and ever." There seems to be a difference of reading in the first clause. Instead of yazheeroo kezohar, there seems to have been yayraro kim'ooroth. The verb used in the Massoretic text means really "admonish." The noun occurs only in Ezekiel 13:2. In the last clause, instead of הָרַבִּים (harabbeem), "many," the Septuagint has read דְּבָרֵי (deboray), "my words." It is difficult to account for the omission of the final ם unless from the likeness of מ to כ and and (see Corpus Insc. Semit.). Theodotion renders, "And they that understand shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and certain from amongst the righteous as the stars for ever and ever." The Peshitta rendering is somewhat paraphrastic, "Those that do good and are wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and those who conquer many shall be lights, and arise as the stars of heaven for ever and ever." The Vulgate is in close harmony with the Massoretic text. The versions are superior to our Authorized, in having "those that understand" instead of "those that be wise." Bevan regards the wise here as the "teachers." There seems, however, no reason for such a restriction. The reading of the Septuagint in the opening clause of the second member of the sentence is inferior, as confirming or justifying the words of Daniel or of God is a simpler idea than that of turning many to righteousness. Further, there is a difficulty of fixing who is referred to by the prenominal suffix "my." Professor Fuller refers to Isaiah 51:11 for a parallel use of the hiphil of צָדַק; but there, as elsewhere, it means, not "turn to righteousness," but "justify," that is, "declare righteous." Yet the connection between the two ideas is close, and the forensic idea can have no place here. Matthew 13:43 represents a similar reward to the righteous.
But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.
Verse 4. - But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased. The Septuagint rendering in the last portion of the verse is totally different from the Masserotic recension, which is correctly rendered in our English version, "And thou, Daniel, hide the commands and seal the book till the time of the end, till many shall rave violently (ἀπομανῶσιν) and the earth be filled with unrighteousness." It is possible that יְשֻׁגּעוּ (yeshoogg'oo), "were mad," was read instead of יִּשׂטְטוּ (yishoetoo), "ran to and fro." In the older script מ. was not unlike ע. Professor Bevan has suggested that instead of הַדָּעַת (hadda'th), "the knowledge," the Septuagint translator has read הָרָעֹת (hara'oth), "the evils," and thinks that this gives the Septuagint Greek. Were one, however, to render the Greek back into Hebrew, that would not be the form the words would take. It may, however, be regarded as a paraphrase. Theodotion's version is closer to the Massoretic, "And thou, Daniel, shalt guard (ἕμφραζον, ('make a fence round') the words, and seal the book till the time of the end, till many shall be taught, and knowledge shall be fulfilled." Theodotion here takes שיט as meaning, not "run to and fro," but "peruse carefully." The last clause somewhat justifies Professor Bevan's suggestion: רָבָה used to mean "fulfil" or "fill out." The Peshitta renders, "And thou, then, Daniel, seal these commands, render silent, and seal this book till the time of the end, and many shall inquire, and knowledge shall be increased." The Vulgate agrees on the whole with the Massoretic text. Shut up the words. The exact rendering of the words is "close up;" hence Theodotion's rendering "put a rampart round," the סָתַם (satham), means generally "to stop up a well;" e.g. 2 Kings 3:19; 2 Chronicles 32:30; Genesis 26:15. In Nehemiah 4:1 (7) it is used of stopping the breaches in the wall; only in Ezekiel 28:3 and Psalm 8 (6) is the word rendered, even in the English versions, "hidden;" but even in these cases that is not the necessary or even the natural meaning of the woful. These remarks apply also to Daniel 8:26. Seal the book. There is a question as to the force of this phrase. Does it mean, as Hitzig, Bevan, and the critical school generally maintain it means, that the book was to be hidden and concealed? This view, if correct, would certainly give a plausibility to the contention that the book of Daniel is the work of a falsarisu. We have seen, however, that the real meaning of the verb translated "shut up" is not "conceal," but "to shut up" with the view certainly of hindering access to them, but not at all with the intention of concealment. So the "sealing" here does not necessarily indicate concealment, but rather the conclusion of the matter with further idea of confirmation. The oracles of God are regarded as a spring of water; if we follow the figure implied in the first word used, the flow is stopped now; so far as this message is concerned, nothing more is to be drawn from the fountain. But a fountain may also be sealed (see Song of Solomon 4:12, "A garden enclosed, a fountain sealed"). In that case there is no idea of concealment. The book, then, of the prophecy is to be sealed against any change or addition. Even take the view of the critics, there is here no elaborate directions as to the concealment of the vision as we find in the case of the 'Assumption of Moses.' But further, we have no account of the finding of the book. Daniel was not like the 'Assumption of Moses,' the esoteric possession of a single sect, it was on the critical hypothesis soon known all over Palestine and Egypt. We know that the finding of the book of the Law in the reign of Josiah is narrated in 2 Kings 22. and 2 Chronicles 34; but neither 1 Maccabees nor 2 Maccabees says a word about the finding of the Book of Daniel. Josephus also has no word of the discovery of Daniel, although he relates the finding of the book of the Law in the days of Josiah. There must have been no tradition of such a thing taking place, yet two centuries was not so long as to obliterate tradition. The sealing had metaphorical meaning - a book sealed, though it was visible to the eye, and was not hidden away - could not be read. If the key by which to interpret it is not granted, a book in cipher cannot be read (comp. Isaiah 29:11, 12, "And the vision of all is become unto you as a book that is sealed, which men deliver to one that is learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I cannot, for it is sealed. And the book is delivered to him that is not learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I am not learned." If the book were sealed that it could not be opened, the delivering of the book and the request to read it would be meaningless). Prophecy was delivered frequently in enigmatic language, and the meaning of it could only be grasped when circumstance supplied the key. To the time of the end. The end is not the end of the persecution of the days of Antiochus - that is already past; we have now reached the consummation of all things. Many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased. This is to be looked upon as a description of the last time, when circumstance shall remove the seal from the book. The translator of the Septuagint has been led away by the idea of the time as one of sorrow. The verb, however, translated "going to and fro" may be rendered, as it is by Ewald, as "to peruse." The veil then shall be removed, the seals broken when men peruse the prophecy carefully, and knowledge is increased.
Then I Daniel looked, and, behold, there stood other two, the one on this side of the bank of the river, and the other on that side of the bank of the river.
Verse 5. - Then I Daniel looked, and, behold, there stood other two, the one on this side of the bank of the river, and the other on that side of the bank of the river. The versions do not require remark, save that the Septuagint and the Peshitta do not repeat "river." The abrupt introduction of "two other' is another proof that the long eleventh chapter, as we have it now, is an interpolation. We must go back to Daniel 10:18 to get the person from whom these two mentioned are distinguished. The two new dramatis personae are, as Professor Bevan remarks, in all likelihood angels, and the river in question is the Tigris. In ch. 10. Hiddekel is nahar; here the word used is yeor, a word very often used of the Nile, but not exclusively (see Isaiah 33:21). Hitzig asserts that ילֺאר (y'or) is an Egyptian appellative, made by the Hebrews into the proper name of the Nile. The example just given disproves this statement, and from this false premise he deduces that the Book of Daniel was written in Egypt. They may be angels of countries. There seems nothing to justify the idea that Michael and Gabriel are the two here intended - the word "other" excludes this. The reason of this introduction of two angels is, Professor Bevan thinks, as witnesses to the oath of the angel. But an oath, to be binding, did not need witnesses; e.g. when David sware to Jonathan, there were no witnesses. Another idea may be hazarded - the Tigris may be looked upon as the boundary of the East and the West; and the two other angels may be the angelic guardians of these two regions.
And one said to the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?
Verse 6. - And one said to the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, How long shall it be to the end of these wonders? The Septuagint renderingis, "And I said" - reading אמר instead of יאמר - "to one clothed in fair linen (βύσσινα), which is above the water of the river" - the last five words being omitted from the Syriac of Paulus Tellensis - "When, then, shall the end be of these marvels which thou hast told me, and their purification?" The last clause, which does not represent anything in the Massoretic, is due to a confusion between אֶשְׁמַע, with which the next verse begins, and אַשָׁמַם. Theodotion's rendering is, as usual, closer to the Massoretic, "and he said to the man clothed in baddin, who was upon the waters of the river, When shall be the end of those marvels of which thou speakest?" Both the Greek versions insert "of which thou speakest." The rendering of the Peshitta differs slightly, "And they said" - a reading that one would be wishful to adopt if it had any probability in its favour - "to the man clothed in beautiful apparel, who was standing above the waters of the river, Until when shall the end of these things be?" The omission of "wonders" is to be observed. The Vulgate follows the Septuagint in making Daniel the speaker, "And I said to the man clothed in linen, who was standing over the waters of the river, When shall be the end of these marvels?" And one said. Aben Ezra makes this one of the two who spoke. This suggestion is the most natural, only the sentence is singularly abrupt, and favours the idea that there is an omission here. The LXX. and Vulgate, as we have seen, read, "I said." While the reading is an easy one, it is, as Professor Bevan remarks, against the analogy of Daniel 8:13. To the man clothed in linen. This man is mentioned in Daniel 10:5, presumably Gabriel. Which was upon the waters of the river. The reference may be to Daniel 8:16, where a voice comes to him from between the banks of the river Ulai. Here, not upon the waters of the river Tigris, but over them, was the appearance of the angel Gabriel. How long shall it be to the end of these wonders? One difficulty that strikes one is that there are no wonders foretold. That the rulers of Syria should war against the possessors of Egypt was not a marvellous thing. Professor Bevan, who holds that the marvels referred to are the events foretold, quotes Isaiah 29:14 as a parallel instance, but, though marvels are there mentioned, such marvels that all the wisdom of the wise should fail, etc., yet here nothing is told of the nature of these marvels. Had there been visions of symbolic animals, as in the seventh and eighth chapters, we could have understood these things being spoken of as marvels. The probability, then, is heightened that there have been omissions as well as insertions here. The time contemplated is the end, when judgment and resurrection are passed. It is, in fact, the question of the apostles (Matthew 24:3), "Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?"
And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.
Verse 7. - And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished. The Septuagint essentially agrees with this. It omits "man" in the first clause; has "water" instead of "waters;" adds "God" as explanatory of "him that liveth for ever;" it renders "scatter the power" by "loose the hands." Theodotion, while agreeing with the Massoretic text as to the first portion of the verse, differs very much in the end. He renders, "when the scattering is finished, they shall know these things." There is, as will be seen, no reference to the "holy people." His manuscript must have omitted "holy," for the rest may be explained by a false division into words, יד־עם being read ידעו The Massoretic reading is to be preferred. The Peshitta and Vulgate do not call for remark. When he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven. The lifting up the hand, in sign of making a solemn asseveration, is used of God himself (Deuteronomy 32:40), of Abraham (Genesis 14:22), of the angel in the passage in Revelation founded on this (Revelation 10:5). Here the fact that both right hand and left hand are lifted up to heaven gives greater solemnity to the act. And sware by him that liveth for ever. This title is ascribed to God in Daniel 4:34 (31); also in Deuteronomy 32:40; the idea is involved in the name Jehovah (Yahveh). The relationship between the oath and the ascription to God, on whose faithfulness its fulfilment depended, is obvious, The fact that the "man clothed in linen" thus "swears" implies that in some way he is the source of the determination of the period. This notion is involved in the whole spiritual scenery of the Book of Daniel; the angels of the nations are the agents under God for carrying out the decrees of providence. That it shall be for a time, times, and an half. This is a space of time repeatedly used in the Biblical apocalypses (Daniel 7:25; Revelation 12:14). In Revelation 11:3, the same period seems to be represented by twelve hundred and sixty days. In the present case twelve hundred and ninety days seem to be regarded as equivalent to the "time, times, and an half (ver. 11). The divergency of interpretation comes to its height here. A great number of interpreters - not merely those of the critical school - maintain that "time" here is a literal year, and the days of the succeeding verses literal days, and that the period in question is that between the desecration of the temple by Antiochus's orders, and the setting up "the abomination of desolation" (1 Macc. 1:54), till the Jews were able to sacrifice once more in the re-consecrated temple (1 Macc. 4:52). This period, however, is only ten days over the three years from the 15th Casleu, 145 of the era of the Seleucids, to the 25th Casleu, 148. Or, if we take the date from the time that sacrifices to Jupiter began, till the re-establishment of the worship of Jehovah, it is then exactly three years from the 25th Casleu to the 25th Casleu. This period is not sufficient. Professor Moses Stuart gets over the difficulty by reckoning back from the cleansing of the temple to what he consider, the probable date of Antiochus's entrance into Jerusalem on his retreat from Egypt. This, however, is arbitrary, as the eleventh verse makes the terminus a quo the setting up of the "abomination of desolation," which occurred in 145, Seleucid era. Professor Bevan would reckon to the death of Antiochus. Of this event we only know it happened in 149, Seleucid era (1 Macc. 6:16). If the year began, as the Maceabaean reckoning seems to have been, with the month Nisan, it might be that approximately three years and a half was the time from the desecration of the temple to the death of Anti-ochua But the death of Antiochus produced but little change on the condition of the Jews. In the following year Lysias inflicted a defeat on Judas and besieged Jerusalem, and captured a portion of the city. To some extent we have anticipated our remarks on this text when considering Daniel 7:25. There are, however, peculiarities due to the fact that Aramaic, not Hebrew, is the language used in that passage. מועֵד (mo'ed), here rendered "time." is translated "congregation" most generally in the Peutatcuch. Sometimes it is "feast," and sometimes it is "season;" but if the word here means a definite period of time, it is the only case in which it does so, and it is a word that appears several hundreds of times in the Scriptures. We admit that the enumeration of days which follows renders the assertion that mo'ed means here a "year," to some extent plausible, yet only plausible. But the next question arises - Even though we should grant that it means a year, are we to understand a literal year? We saw that the "weeks" of ch. 9. are not to be taken literally, but as weeks of years, in which each day stands for a year; the contention of the traditional interpreters has then a justification from analogy in taking a mo'ed, if a "year," to be one of three hundred and sixty or three hundred and sixty-five years. Not only is the extent of time indicated here extremely doubtful, but the terminus a qao is also. Although the writer of 1 Maccabees fixes the setting up the abomination of desolation, that is only his interpretation. Our Lord, on the other hand, refers it to the Roman conquest of Jerusalem, which was a vastly more thorough destruction than that inflicted by Antiochus. The meaning of this period is not fixed yet. When he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people. Professor Bevan would change the reading here, as from the order of the Greek words in the Septuagint he deduces that the order in the text before the translator was different from that in the Massoretic text. He would render, "When the power of the shatterer of the holy people shall come to an end." Behrmann sees grammatical difficulties, but these are not cogent; but the argument for this change is weak. Yet we prefer, though with difficulty, Professor Bevan's reading. It makes the connection much simpler to take this solution, as the end of all things is not the scattering of the holy people, but their building up. If we had any authority from the versions we should be inclined to read מִכַּלות instead of וּכְכַלּות, and insert עַד before תִּכְלֶינָה, and thus would wish to render, "From the breaking of the power of the scatterer of the holy people till all these things are ended." This gives beth termini, but none of the versions gives any hint of such a reading. All these things shall be finished. As the resurrection is mentioned in the second verse, we might at once assume that this refers to the end of time; but Matthew 24:34, compared with 30, renders this conclusion doubtful.
And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things?
Verse 8. - And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things? The Septuagint rendering differs in a somewhat singular way from the above, "And I heard and understood not, especially about this time; and I said, Lord, what is the solution of this word, and what are those parables?" These variations seem due to glosses and paraphrase. Theodotion is in complete agreement with the Massoretic text. The Peshitta differs only by inserting "Daniel." The Vulgate renders the last clause, Quid erit post haec? "What will be after these things?" Daniel understood the words, but by hypothesis he did not understand the meaning of them. This exhibits the relation of the prophet always to the revelations given - his faculty of understanding was totally independent of the receptive faculty by which he received the revelation. If we assume this as representing a fact, then all arguments which are grounded on the meanings which the prophet himself might see in his words are beside the question. Since he does not understand, he appeals to the angelic messenger, who had declared so much.
And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.
Verse 9. - And he said, Go thy way, Daniel; for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. The Septuagint omits the last clause, and completes this verse from that which succeeds, "And he said, Depart, Daniel; for the commands are veiled and sealed until many shall be tried and shall be sanctified." Theodotion renders, "Come, Daniel, because the words are fenced and sealed till the time of the end." The Peshitta and the Vulgate agree with the Massoretic. Go thy way, Daniel. This is a refusal to grant Daniel's prayer, but in the refusal no condemnation of Daniel is implied. The oracles were sealed until circumstance broke the seal. The purpose of prophecy was not to enable men to write history beforehand. It is to be a sign that, recognized in its fulfilment, may afford evidence of the Divinity of the message or person to whom it referred. Closed up and sealed. This verse gives us the real meaning of these words. Daniel's oracles were not concealed and sealed from being read, but because they were not interpreted they were not understood. For even to Daniel they are "closed up and sealed." Till the time of the end. This is omitted, as may be seen above, from the Septuagint. Although this has a satisfactory meaning, yet it seems better to connect this verse more directly with that which follows.
Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.
Verse 10. - Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand. As before observed, the Septuagint takes the first words of this verse and joins them to the verse preceding, omitting, however, one of the three stages of the process. The rest of the verse is, "And the sinners shall sin, and none of the sinners shall understand, and the wise shall attend." The version of Theodotion is longer than the Massoretic, "Many shall be chosen and made white, and tested, and sanctified; and none of the transgressors shall understand, and the wise shall understand." The additional stage is probably due to a "doublet." The Peshitta rendering is, "Many shall be chosen, and made white, and tried; and the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the sinners shall understand; but those that then do good shall understand." The Vulgate rendering is, "And many shall be chosen, and made white, and tried as by fire; and the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the learned shall understand." It is to be observed that all the versions take the hithpael of בָרַר and לָבַן as if they were the passives of the kal - a view that shows the grammatical influence of the Aramaic dialects. This verse as a whole is paraphrased in Revelation 22:11, "He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he that is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still." Many shall be purified, and made tchite. If we keep strictly to the meaning of the hithpael, we ought to render, "Many shall purify themselves and make themselves white," as the Revised renders. When men make a sincere effort after purity, then the Lord is ready to help them. John 7:17, "If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine." Then, when men were thus striving after purity, would the meaning of Daniel's prophecy be made known. An age in which there is great religious fervour is never one in which men are conscious of prevailing goodness; on the contrary, it is one when men are conscious of prevailing evil in themselves and others. Hence the Book of Daniel could not have been written in the age of the Maccabees; by their very earnestness they would be conscious of moral and spiritual defects in themselves and others, and would not reckon their age one in which special revelations could be expected. Tried. The reference implied in the word used is trying by fire - after these saints have purified themselves they are tested by fire. But the wicked shall do wickedly. No amount of affliction will of itself produce purity. The northern tribes were oppressed by Hazael, but that did not work any change in them. The most striking example of this in all history is the siege of Jerusalem, The sufferings of the siege made the besieged more utterly lawless than before. Our Lord interprets a portion of this passage as referring to this siege. None of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand. This again repeats the doctrine that effort after holiness is necessary to understanding God's ways. The historical instance above cited proves the truth of the statement here. The Christians, who were the wise in the sense of those that considered and sought after God, understood the signs of the times, and left Jerusalem; but none of the wicked understood, and so perished in the fall of the city.
And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days.
Verse 11. - And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days. The Septuagint is, "From the time the sacrifice is taken away for ever, and the abomination of desolation is prepared to be set up, are a thousand two hundred and ninety days." The translator must have had עֹלַת ('olath) before him, and read it עלָה ('olah), else he could not have translated תָּמִיֻד "for ever," and written "sacrifice" also. The Hebrew copyist, following the usage of Palestine, which makes "sacrifice" understood after "continual," had omitted it in the text followed by the Massoretes. Theodotion's rendering is, "From the time of the change of the daily sacrifice (ἐν δελεχισμός) and the abomination of desolation set up ("given," δοθήσεται) is a thousand two hundred and ninety days." The Peshitta and Vulgate do not call for remarks. This verse is a veritable cruz interpretum. From the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away. This event is referred to in Daniel 11:31. Whether the eleventh chapter is earlier or later is in our opinion scarcely doubtful. Also in Daniel 8:11 we have the taking away of the daily sacrifice mentioned as one of the deeds of Antiochus. While the reference in ch. 11. and ch. 8. is to the action of Antiochus, it is not necessary to maintain that this refers to him; other oppressors might take away the daily sacrifice. This clause certainly seems to give the terminus a quo, but it is difficult to fix the date in question. Certainly from the fact that the words used here are used by the writer of the eleventh chapter to describe the actions of Antiochus, and that in 1 Macc. 1:54 there is also a similar identification, we might be inclined to take the event here mentioned as the starting-point of the twelve hundred and ninety days. But the acknowledged impossibility of fitting the days to the chronology militates against this view. And the abomination that maketh desolate set up. At first sight the reader is inclined to follow Wieseler, and regard this as a statement of the terminus ad quem. The grammatical difficulties against this view are forcible. Although לְ... מִן, "from" and "to," are sometimes used for עד ... מִן, "from... until," it is rare, and the intrusion of וְ, "and," is strong against this interpretation. Yet it seems strange that two termini a quo should be assigned and no terminus ad quota. A thousand two hundred and ninety days. While this seems to be the same period as that reckoned in the seventh verse, "a time, times, and half a time," yet it is not absolutely coincident. It is thirty days more than three and a half times the prophetic year of three hundred and sixty, and eleven days more than three and a half mean solar years. As we have already said, if we take the profanation of the temple, 25th Casleu, 145 Seleucid era, as our starting-point, it is impossible to fix any great deliverance or any event of importance which happened some three years and seven months after. Antiochus may have died seven months after the news arrived of the reconsecration of the temple; but we have no data. As above stated, the death of Antiochus wrought but little alteration in the condition of the Jews. If we regard the days as literal days, there is one period that nearly coincides with the twelve hundred and ninety days - our Lord's ministry upon the earth. It is difficult to understand how our Lord's commencing his ministry was the removing of the daily sacrifice. Yet in the "heavenlies" it might be so. Further, we sometimes reckon "from" a period to come, as we can say, "We are yet - weeks from harvest, midsummer, or Christmas." So the Crucifixion as the fulfilment of all the sacrifices of the Law may be regarded as their removal. Certainly in his crucifixion was the real abomination which maketh desolate set up. It suits the next verse. From our Lord's crucifixion to his ascension there would be exactly forty-five days if, as is commonly believed, his ascension, as his resurrection, took place on a Sunday. This, however, is merely a thought thrown out. If we take the date indicated by our Lord, the war against the Jews, dating from Vespasian's march to Ptolemais in the beginning of A.D. to the capture of the temple and the cessation of the daily sacrifice (Josephus, 'Bell. Jud.,' 6:02. 1), is not far off twelve hundred and ninety days. From this to the final capture of the city is close upon forty-five days. If we, however, take a day for a year, then another series of possible solutions are before us, all more or less faulty. One has the merit of postponing the solution to a date still future. The capture of Jerusalem by the Arabs in A.D. is made the starting-point; if we add to that twelve hundred and ninety years, we have A.D. . The Mohammedan power may have fallen by that time; anything may have happened then. All these various solutions, all more or less unsatisfactory, prove that no solution is possible. If the fulfilment is yet in the future, circumstances may convey to us the interpretation. We must remember the vision was sealed to "the time of the end." Professor Fuller suggests that Babylonian discovery may at some future date throw light on Daniel's use of numbers.
Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days.
Verse 12. - Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days. None of the versions occasion any remark. Blessed is he that waiteth. It might be rendered, Oh the blessed-nesses of him that waiteth! This implies that forty-five days or years after the unknown event that terminates the twelve hundred and ninety days, another event of yet more surpassing interest, and fraught with yet greater benefit, shall occur. It seems most natural to regard this period as including in it that which precedes, though there is no grammatical reason why this period should not commence at the expiry of the twelve hundred and ninety days. In the latter case we are fully more at sea than before.
But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.
Verse 13. - But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days. The Septuagint Version here differs considerably from the Massoretic, "Go thy way and rest, for there are days and hours till the fulfilment of the end; and thou shalt rest and arise to thy glory at the end of days." Theodotion closely resembles the LXX. in his rendering of this verse, "But go thou and rest, for there are yet days and hours to the fulfilment of the end, and thou shalt arise in thy lot at the end of days." The Pesbitta renders, "Go, Daniel, to the end, rest and arise at thy time at the end of days." The Vulgate agrees with the Massoretic text. As to the additional clause which appears in the version of the LXX. and in Theodotion, Origen has appended the mark which indicates that these words were only found in the LXX., or, at all events, had nothing corresponding to them in the Hebrew text of his day. Go thou thy way. Daniel is dismissed in peace, without having his question answered. Before Daniel was a course, and on that course he was to go, without occupying his thoughts with this secret thing. There is no word for "way" in the Hebrew or in any of the older versions. Till the end. The versions transpose this clause with that which follows. "The end" is not naturally the end of Daniel's life, for that ought to be "thy end;" still, the next clause seems to necessitate this. Hitzig would interpret the word qaytz as "goal" (ziel); but it is not the usual meaning of the word, and is not so used elsewhere in this passage. Professor Robertson Smith's suggestion (Bevan, 207), that the word קֵצ (qaytz) is due to a mistake of a copyist, who has inserted it wrongly, is worthy of consideration. For thou shalt rest. This is rendered by Hitzig, "und magst ruhig sein" - "and you may be at rest." The fulfilment of the prophecy was fur a time long future, and Daniel need not disturb himself. Against this interpretation is the fact that the verb נוַּה (nuah), here translated "rest," never has the subjective meaning which Hitzig here attaches to it. The natural view is that of Ewald and most interpreters - "rest" in the grave. And strand in thy lot at the end of the days. In Jeremiah 13:25 "lot" is used for what is assigned by the judgment of God. "Standing in the lot" primarily suggests one taking possession of what has been assigned by Divine judgment. It is objected by Hitzig that the verb "to stand" does not mean to rise from the dead, which is true; but the connection necessitates this meaning, and as the idea of resurrection had not received theological definition, no technical word would have the exclusive claim to be used. Even now we do not always use "resurrection," and in poetry rarely do. "The end of days" must mean the end of time after the resurrection.