But go you your way till the end be: for you shall rest, and stand in your lot at the end of the days.
These words contain undoubtedly the dismission of Daniel from his whole life work, and may, therefore, be applied to anyone who has been working well for God, and has now gone to rest. The text, taken in its connections, may bring to our view:
I. THE MAJESTY AND GREATNESS OF THE PROVIDENCE OF GOD. There is no subject perhaps which we are so apt to dwarf and belittle in our ordinary conceptions as the subject of the world-providence of God..We require to place ourselves, so to say, in a petition to see it. This book of Daniel is a magnificent climbing-ground. It gives us a succession of far-reaching views. It shows us the continuity of history, the connecting of one thing out of another, the plan of God in it all. God says not only to individuals, but to communities of men, and witnesses for the truth; to churches and to generations, "Go thy way." What power of will and thought is His which can develop itself in fulness only through all the worlds and along all the ages! How vast is His providence, by which the whole is wrought out. Everything is ruled and used for the accomplishment of His ultimate and perfect will.
II. HOW LITTLE IS INDIVIDUAL MAN. Insignificant as man is, God is mindful of him. A fly is more than a cathedral, for it is living, organised, capable of motion, and of a kind of thought, and is, therefore, more in the scale of being than any form or size of inanimate matter. A man, living, intelligent, immortal, is more than the whole providence of God. It, therefore, may be expected that God will look to and tenderly regard the sons of men. We may trust Him to gather up the fragments of our life activity, so that nothing at all shall be lost. God says to every one of His dying children, "Go thy way. Thy day's work is done. I have watched thee at it all the day long. I alone know what thy work has been. I have known thy secret purpose, and I have reckoned that in thy work. Thy work is done. Go in trustfulness. Go in peace."
III. "THOU SHALT REST." To go from earthly labour for God is to go to Heavenly rest. Even the earthly part rests in the grave. But the better part is carried to the waiting yet happy and restful company of sainted souls. Some interpret "sleeping in Jesus" literally. There is nothing unphilosophical in this theory. The practical extinction of time is not difficult to imagine. No length of time is anything when compared with eternal duration. He that falls asleep in Jesus may sleep safely through all the remaining ages of time, and still have undiminished eternity to live in. But it seems that to sleep in Jesus is not to be unconscious. It is to be in Paradise; and that must mean, to be patient, percipient, happy. The meaning seems to be, "Thou shalt rest," and know that thou art resting. Of course, this rest after the work of life will be more or less to each, according to the labours that have preceded it. He who does what his hand findeth to do with his might through life's working day, will go to his Heavenly rest with a satisfaction and a zest which loiterer and laggard can never know.
IV. THE REST AT DEATH IS PREPARATORY TO SOMETHING FAR MORE COMPLETE AT THE "END OF THE DAYS." Then — when the whole vast system of earthly providence is wound up — then shall each man, woman, and child stand in their "own lot." The reference here is chiefly to the righteous. The term "stand" expresses the completeness, and above all the permanence of the new life. And it will be our own lot. We shall stand then in that which we are making now. We shall claim that which by our faith we claimed before, and in a measure possessed by our love and hope.
(Alex. Raleigh, D.D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.