Daniel 12:4
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
"But as for you, Daniel, conceal these words and seal up the book until the end of time; many will go back and forth, and knowledge will increase."

King James Bible
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.

Darby Bible Translation
And thou, Daniel, close the words, and seal the book, till the time of the end. Many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.

World English Bible
But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run back and forth, and knowledge shall be increased."

Young's Literal Translation
And thou, O Daniel, hide the things, and seal the book till the time of the end, many do go to and fro, and knowledge is multiplied.'

Daniel 12:4 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words - To wit, by sealing them up, or by closing the book, and writing no more in it. The meaning is, that all has been communicated which it was intended to communicate. The angel had no more to say, and the volume might be sealed up.

And seal the book - This would seem to have been not an unusual custom in closing a prophecy, either by affixing a seal to it that should be designed to confirm it as the prophet's work - as we seal a deed, a will, or a contract; or to secure the volume, as we seal a letter. Compare the notes at Daniel 8:26; Isaiah 8:16.

Even to the time of the end - That is, the period when all these things shall be accomplished. Then

(a) the truth of the prediction now carefully sealed up will be seen and acknowledged;

(b) and then, also, it may be expected that there will be clearer knowledge on all these subjects, for the facts will throw increased light on the meaning and the bearing of the predictions.

Many shall run to and fro - Shall pass up and down in the world, or shall go from place to place. The reference is clearly to those who should thus go to impart knowledge; to give information; to call the attention of men to great and important matters. The language is applicable to any methods of imparting important knowledge, and it refers to a time when this would be the characteristic of the age. There is nothing else to which it can be so well applied as to the labors of Christian missionaries, and ministers of the gospel, and others who, in the cause of Christian truth, go about to rouse the attention of men to the great subjects of religion; and the natural application of the language is to refer it to the times when the gospel would be preached to the world at large.

And knowledge shall be increased - To wit, by this method. The angel seems to mean that in this way there would be an advance in knowledge on all the subjects of religion, and particularly on the points to which he had referred. This would be one of the characteristics of these times, and this would be the means by which it would be accomplished. Our own age has furnished a good illustration of the meaning of this language, and it will be still more fully and strikingly illustrated as the time approaches when the knowledge of the Lord shall fill the whole world.

Having thus gone through with an exposition of these, the closing words of the vision Daniel 12:1-4, it seems proper that we should endeavor to ascertain the meaning of the angel in what is here said, and the bearing of this more particularly on what he had said before. With this view, therefore, several remarks may be made here.

(1) it seems clear that there was in some respects, and for some purpose, a primary reference to Antiochus, and to the fact that in his times there would be a great rousing up of the friends of God and of religion, as if from their graves.

(a) The connection demands it. If the close of the last chapter refers to Antiochus, then it cannot be denied that this does also, for it is introduced in immediate connection with that, and as referring to that time: "And at that time."

(b) The facts referred to would require the same interpretation. Thus it is said that it would be a time of trouble, such as there had never been since the nation existed - a state of things which clearly refers to the calamities which would be brought upon them by the persecutions of Antiochus Epiphanes.

(c) This interpretation seems to be in accordance with the purpose of the angel to give the assurance that these troubles would come to an end, and that in the time of the greatest calamity, when everything seemed tending to ruin, God would interpose, and would secure the people, and would cause his own worship to be restored. Porphyry then, it appears to me, was so far right as to apply this to the times of Antiochus, and to the events that occurred under the Maccabees. "Then," says he, "those who, as it were, sleep in the dust of the earth, and are pressed down with the weight of evils, and, as it were, hid in sepulchres of misery, shall rise from the dust of the earth to unexpected victory, and shall raise their heads from the ground the observers of the law rising to everlasting life, and the violators of it to eternal shame." He also refers to the history, in which it is said that, in the times of the persecutions, many of the Jews fled to the desert, and hid themselves in caves and caverns, and that after the victories of the Maccabees they came forth, and that this was metaphorically (μεταφορικῶς metaphorikōs) called a resurrection of the dead. - Jerome, in loc. According to this interpretation, the meaning would be, that there would be a general uprising of the people; a general arousing of them from their lethargy, or summoning them from their retreats and hiding-places, as if the dead, good and bad, should arise from their dust.

(2) This language, however, is derived from the doctrine of the literal resurrection of the dead. It implies the belief of that doctrine. It is such language as would be used only where that doctrine was known and believed. It would convey no proper idea unless it were known and believed. The passage, then, may be adduced as full proof that the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust, was understood and believed in the time of Daniel. No one can reasonably doubt this. Such language is met used in countries where the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead is not believed, and where used, as it is in Christian lands, is full proof, even when employed for illustration, that the doctrine of the resurrection is a common article of belief. Compare the notes at Isaiah 26:19. This language is not found in the Greek and Latin classic writers; nor in pagan writings in modern times; nor is it found in the earlier Hebrew Scriptures; nor is it used by infidels even for illustration; and the proof, therefore, is clear that as employed in the time of Daniel the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead was known and believed. If so, it marks an important fact in the progress of theological opinion and knowledge in his times. How it came to be known is not intimated here, nor explained elsewhere, but of the fact no one can have any reasonable doubt. Even now, so clear and accurate is the language, that if we wish to express the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead, we cannot do it better than by employing the language of the angel in addressing Daniel. (See Editor's Preface to volume on Job.)

(3) The full meaning of the language is not met by the events that occurred in the times of the Maccabees. As figurative, or, as Porphyry says, metaphorical, it might be used to describe those events. But what then occurred would not come up to the proper and complete meaning of the prediction. That is, if nothing more was intended, we should feel that the event fell far short of the full import of the language; of the ideas which it was fitted to convey; and of the hopes which it was adapted to inspire. If that was all, then this lofty language would not have been used. There was nothing in the facts that adequately corresponded with it. In the obvious and literal sense, there was nothing which could be called a resurrection to "everlasting life;" nothing that could be called an awaking to "everlasting shame and contempt." There was nothing which would justify literally the language "they shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and as the stars forever and ever." The language naturally has a higher signification than this, and even when employed for illustration, that higher signification should be recognized and would be suggested to the mind.

continued...

Daniel 12:4 Parallel Commentaries

Library
The Time of Trouble
"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, everyone that shall be found written in the book." Daniel 12:1. When the third angel's message closes, mercy no longer pleads for the guilty inhabitants of the earth. The people of God have accomplished their work. They have received "the latter
Ellen Gould White—The Great Controversy

The Recovery and Revival of the Blessed Hope Itself.
In Daniel 12:4, 9, 10 we read--"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. ** And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the Time of the End. 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." [9] As we shall yet seek to show this prophecy is a composite one
Arthur W. Pink—The Redeemer's Return

The Revelation
In the days of the apostles the Christian believers were filled with earnestness and enthusiasm. So untiringly did they labor for their Master that in a comparatively short time, notwithstanding fierce opposition, the gospel of the kingdom was sounded to all the inhabited parts of the earth. The zeal manifested at this time by the followers of Jesus has been recorded by the pen of inspiration for the encouragement of believers in every age. Of the church at Ephesus, which the Lord Jesus used as a
Ellen Gould White—The Acts of the Apostles

Christ's Exaltation
'Wherefore God also has highly exalted him, and given him a name above every name, &c.' Phil 2:2. We have before spoken of Christ's humiliation; we shall now speak of his exaltation. Before you saw the Sun of Righteousness in the eclipse; now you shall see it coming out of the eclipse, and shining in its full glory. Wherefore God has highly exalted him;' super exaltavit, Ambrose. Above all exaltation.' Q-28: WHEREIN CONSISTS CHRIST'S EXALTATION? A: In his rising from the dead, his ascending into
Thomas Watson—A Body of Divinity

Cross References
Revelation 5:1
I saw in the right hand of Him who sat on the throne a book written inside and on the back, sealed up with seven seals.

Revelation 10:4
When the seven peals of thunder had spoken, I was about to write; and I heard a voice from heaven saying, "Seal up the things which the seven peals of thunder have spoken and do not write them."

Revelation 22:10
And he said to me, "Do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is near.

Isaiah 8:16
Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples.

Isaiah 11:9
They will not hurt or destroy in all My holy mountain, For the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD As the waters cover the sea.

Isaiah 29:11
The entire vision will be to you like the words of a sealed book, which when they give it to the one who is literate, saying, "Please read this," he will say, "I cannot, for it is sealed."

Isaiah 29:18
On that day the deaf will hear words of a book, And out of their gloom and darkness the eyes of the blind will see.

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