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rate times in which God revealed unto Daniel all that may be considered a prophecy in the book of Daniel, which vision was explained to Daniel by a heavenly messenger called Gabriel, at three separate times, the last of which closes the book of Daniel, which last instruction will be the subject of a future lecture.
Daniel's first vision was the dream which Nebuchad. nezzar had, and which troubled him ; but when he awoke the dream was gone from him. He then called for the magicians, astrologers, sorcerers and wise men of Chaldea, to show him his dream and the interpretation thereof, but they could not. The king being angry commanded that all the wise men of Babylon should be destroyed. Then Arioch, the captain of the king's guard, went forth to execute the king's decree, and among the rest he sought for Daniel and his three friends, young captive Jews, to execute the purpose of king Nebuchadnezzar upon them also. Daniel then, for the first tiroe, being made acquainted with the decree, went in unto the king and desired time, and promised that he would make known the dream and the interpretation thereof. Time being granted, he and his three Hebrew friends held a prayer meeting, (not a cold and formal one as we may reasonably suppose,) for their lives and the lives of their fellow creatures were in danger.
They cried for mercies from the God of heaven. God beard and answered their prayers, and revealed to Daniel the dream and interpretation. After rendering suitable thanksgiving, Daniel went in unto the king and told the dream and visions of the king. As for thee, Oking, thy thoughts came into thy mind upon thy bed, what should come to pass hereafter; and he that revealeth secrets maketh known to thae what shall come to pass: but as for me this secret is not revealed to me for any wisdom that I have more than any living, but for the intent that the interpretation may be made known to the king, and that thou mightest know the thoughts of thy heart. Thou, O king sawest, and behold, a great image. This great image, whose brightness was excellent, stood before thee, and the form thereof was terrible. This image's head was of fine gold, his breast and bis arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, his legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay. Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay and break them to pieces. Then was tho iron, the clay, the brass, the silver and the gold broken to pieces together, and became like the chaft of the summer threshing floors; and the wind carried them away that no place was found for them; and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth.” Daniel ii. 29_35.
This was the dream, and the interpretation was clear as given by Daniel, and the history of the world proves it to be true, a large share having already been fulilled. All that remains to be accomplished is for the stone to smite the image upon his feet, and to become a great mountain and fill the whole earth. “The head of gold” represented the Chaldear. kingdom; " the breast and arms of silver" represented the Medes and Persians ; “ the belly and thighs of brass, which was to bear rule over all the earth,” the Grecian, Alexander a Grecian king conquered the world; “the legs of iron, and the feet part of iron and part clay" fitly represents the Roman kingdom which still exists, al. though in a broken state, like iron and clay. This king. dom has been divided between Pagan Rome, the head wounded to death, and Papal Rome, the deadly wound healed, both “mixing themselves with the seed of m'n," that is uniting church and state, ecclesiastical and civil, in the government. The stone denotes Christ the God of heaven, and the mountain the kingdom of God. His break ing the image to pieces, shows that all the kingdoms of this world are to be utterly destroyed and carried away, so that no place can be found for them. And the kingdom of God filling the whole earth teaches us that the beloved city, the New Jerusalem will fill the world and God will dwell with his people on the earth. Read Daniel ii. 37-45. This dream was in the second year of Nebuchadnezzar's reign, 603 B. C. Forty-eight years afterwards in the first year of Belshazzar's reign and 555 B. C. Daniel had another dream, yet the same in substance: “Daniel spake and said, I saw in my vision by night, and behold the four winds of heaven strove upon the great sea, and four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse one from another. The first was like a lion, and had eagle's wings: I beheld till the wings thereof were plucked, and it was lifted up from the earth, and made to stand upon the feet as a man, and a man's heart was given to it.' And behold another beast a second like unto a bear, and it raised up
itself on one side, and it had three ribs in the mouth of it between
the teeth of it: and they said thus unto it, arise, devour much flesh. After this I beheld, and lo, another like a Leopard, which had upon the back of it four wings of a fowl'; the beast had also four heads and dominion was given to it. After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible and strong exceedingly, and it had great iron teeth; it devoured and break in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it; and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it, and it had ten horns. I considered the horns, and behold there came up among them another little horn before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots; and behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things. 1 beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the ancient of days did sit, whose
garments was white as snow and the hair of his head like the pure wool : his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire. A fiery stream issued and came forth from before him : thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him : the judgment was set and the books were opened. I beheld then, because of the voice of the great words which the horn spake; I beheld, even till the beast was slain, and his body destroyed and given to the burning flame. As concerning the rest of the beasts, they had their dominion taken away, yet their lives were prolonged for a season and time. I saw in the night visions, and behold, one like the son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. And there was given him dominion and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.” Daniel vii. 1_14. This ends Daniel's night vision, except the instruction he received from some one standing by. “So he told me and made me know the truth of all this,' or the interpretation of the things. These great beasts, which are four, are four kings which shall arise out of the earth. But the saints of the most high shall take the kingdom and possess the kingdom forever, even forever and ever.” We see in this instruction that this vision and Nebuchadnezzar's dream agree in the most prominent parts; the four beasts representing the four kingdoms, and the saints possessing the kingdom the
same, as the stone becoming a great mountain and filling the whole earth; “forever and ever,” shows us that it is an immortal state in everlasting life; "the saints,” evidently includes all saints, "for they shall live and reign with him on the earth.” Rev. v. 10, 20; iv. 6. “Then" Daniel says, vii. 19, 20," I would know the truth of the fourth beast, which was diverse from all the others, exceeding dreadful, whose teeth were of iron, and his nails of brass; which devoured, break in pieces, and stamped the residue with his feet; and of the ten horns that were in his head, and of the other which came up and before whom three fell, even of that horn that had eyes, and a mouth that spake very great things, whose look was more stout than his fellows."
In these verses we learn that the fourth beast would be diverse from the others. This was true with Rome; that kingdom first rose from a small colony of adventurers settled, in Italy. Rome also had seven different forms of government, while the others had but one. We learn that this kingdom would devour, break in pieces, harrass and perplex the people of God, whether Jew or Gentile; that it would be divided into ten kingdoms, and afterwards there would arise another power which would swallow
three of the ten kingdoms. This was all true with the Roman government. In A. D. 476 the western empire fell, and was divided into ten kingdoms by the Goths, Huns and Vandals, France, Brittain, Spain, Portugal, Naples, Tuscany, Austria, Lombardy, Rome and Ravena. The three last were absorbed in the territory of Rome," (E. Irwin) and became the states of the church, governed by the Papal chair, the little horn that had eyes and a mouth that spake very great things, whose look was more stout than his fellows. This description cannot apply to any other power but the Church of Rome. “Had eyes,” showing that they made pretence at least to be the household of faith, "eyes” meaning faith, and“ mouth that spake very great things,” showing that the church would claim infallibility; “ whose look would be more stout than his fellows, showing that he would claim authority over all other churches, or even the kings the other horns. See Rev. xvii. 18," And the woman which thou sawest is that great city which reigneth over the kings of the earth.” That the little horn is a part of the fourth kingdom is evident, for it was to come up among the ten horns which were up
on the head of the beast, and there cannot be a shadow of a doubt, even in scripture itself, but that Rome is meant by this fourth beast ; for what power but the Roman will answer the description here and elsewhere given in Daniel.
I beheld and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them, until the ancient of days came and judgment was given to the saints of the most high; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom.” Daniel vii. 21, 22. In these verses we are taught clearly that anti-Christ will prevail over the church of Christ until the first resurrection, and the first judgment, when the saints are raised and judged, which utterly destroys the modern idea of a temporal millenium. A thousand years before the dead are raised and judged; this also agress with the whole tenor of scripture. As "Judgment must first begin at the house of God," and "whom he shall destroy with the brightness of his coming”?; when the ancient of days shall come in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory, “to give reward to his servants the prophets and them that fear his name small and great, and destroy them who destroy the earth,” described next verse, 23, “ Thus he said, the fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down and break it in pieces. And the ten horns out of this king: dom are ten kings that shall arise, and another shall arise after them, and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. And he shall speak great words against the most high, and shall wear out the saints of the most high, and think to change times and laws; and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time. But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion to consume and to destroy it unto the end." 24-26. In these verses we have the history of the fourth beast or Roman power, during 1260 years of the close of this kingdom, which I shall in some future lecture show, is the meaning of time, times and a half. We have also another clear description of the Papal power;" he shall speak great words, &c.' The blasphemies against God, in the pretensions of the Roman clergy to die vine power, working of miracles, cannonizing departed votaries, changing ordinances and laws of God's house, worshiping saints and images, and performing rites and ceremonies too foolish and ridiculous to be for a moment in