• Howard
    Posted at 05:32h, 25 April

    Hi Joel. Again, I appreciate your going through these chapters, and your transparency in your wrestling with the text and the history. Praise God!

    I do have a question, though, regarding Dan 11 as being historical up until v. 21: In Ch 10: 14, it seems like the Lord Himself has come to Daniel to explain the vision that he had had and writes about in 10:1, says that the “appointed time was long”. Ch 10:14, the answer to Daniel is that his vision has to do with “what will happen to your people in the latter days, for the vision is to days yet to come”.

    So the vision pertains to Daniel’s people, i.e., the Jewish people, in the time of the end of the last days, which we know because the description goes on into the first three verses of Ch 12, ending with the resurrection after the “time of trouble”/Jacob’s Trouble/Great Tribulation.

    It seems that it is all of a piece that flows, even with its partial historical “fulfillments”, which were not really full-filling, since that remains to be realized at the end.

    Do you get what I am asking, without my going into more detail, since I am sure that you have probably already considered the implications?

    Blessings. Looking forward to Dalton’s and your teachings on the rest of this great book for our days.

  • Joel
    Posted at 05:37h, 25 April

    Hi Howard,

    Yes, that is my point. In the vision of Daniel 10-12, we are told that the vision pertains to the time of the end. Yet, in 11:14, it roots the beginning in history.

    In the first year of Darius the Mede, I stood up to strengthen and protect him. Now I will tell you the truth. Three more kings will arise in Persia, and the fourth will be far richer than the others. By the power he gains through his riches, he will stir up everyone against the kingdom of Greece. 3 Then a warrior king will arise; he will rule a vast realm and do whatever he wants. 4 But as soon as he is established, his kingdom will be broken up and divided to the four winds of heaven, but not to his descendants; it will not be the same kingdom that he ruled, because his kingdom will be uprooted and will go to others besides them. (Daniel 11:1–4)

    So it is at verses 21 that it shifts to discuss Antichuc/ Antichrist, but at 36 to the end it is entirely Antichrist.

  • Howard
    Posted at 11:53h, 25 April

    Thanks for the quick and full reply, Joel. So, it is similar to the image of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream: the first three kingdoms are before Jesus; the fourth after (much after). The four beasts of Daniel’s dream or vision in Chap 7 similarly: the first three beast kings/kingdoms are before Jesus; the fourth after. And in Chap 11 a similar pattern: the first three up till Antiochus; the transition to the fullness of the Antichrist in the final period of Jacob’s Trouble before God’s wrath is poured out, with the first resurrection/rapture occurring between them.

    This would be like some prophecies about the Messiah seeming to speak of His suffering, but continue with His victorious battle victory at His return.

    Would this be accurate about what you are presenting? Thanks.

  • Joel
    Posted at 12:16h, 25 April

    Yes, that would be accurate.

  • John Surdal
    Posted at 16:16h, 25 April

    It say four prominent horns, it does not say 4 horns only. The prominent horns were the kings that eventally became the kings of the empiers of the the four directions/winds…

    The term The last days, as Peter refers to Joel at pentacost, could also be understood as the last days of the creation week ( Gods overal plan). 4 days had gone, 2 days for the church, the seventh day is the Millenium (God rested on the 7th day). 1 day is for the Lord 1000 years ….. We also see this in Hosea 6.

    Hosea 6
    1Come, let us return to the LORD. For He has torn us to pieces, but He will heal us; He has wounded us, but He will bind up our wounds. 2After two days He will revive us; on the third day He will raise us up, that we may live in His presence.


  • Joel
    Posted at 06:18h, 26 April

    Good point. It does not say only four, though that would seem to be the inference. The problem, as I have said, is that there were really five prominent kings.

  • Michael Anthony
    Posted at 07:23h, 26 April

    Dear Joel,

    Thank you for your openness to reevaluating your prophesy interpretations. Too many people in the Christian leadership community have sacrificed their gift of discernment at the alter of pride. Many even resort to ad hominem attacks on brothers and sisters who openly disagree with them. There are many comments posted in Christian forums which make me cringe.

    It seems reasonable to accept that “the four winds of heaven” is another way of saying North-East-West-South. Likewise, the four divisions of the empire could easily be correct if the starting point of the four families were the reference point. What’s important, however, is the respect and courtesy we have for one another while we are “debating” different prophetic interpretations.

    I appreciate this opportunity to explore or expound on something you said during the 132 episode. I read the prophecy in II-Thessalonians Chapter 2 as a literal list of events that proceed the return of Jesus and the gathering together of those believers who are still alive and remain. The final event is literally a point during the end-time chronology when the anti-christ, who has already been revealed, will sit on the throne in the temple and declare that he is God. This is the moment when Jesus returns and destroys the counterfeit.

    I started asking this question in 1996 and still have not gotten a “concrete” answer. So, that let me put you on the spot (LOL) and ask you for a definitive answer. At what point during the birth pangs and/or the end time chronology does the anti-christ sit on the throne and declare that he is God?

    Thank You. Peace and health blessings!

  • Robert Sharp
    Posted at 10:17h, 26 April

    Thanks for the teaching Joel, I appreciate you being willing to change your view on Daniel 8 and let us know about that. A couple thoughts. A lot of Old Testament prophecy has duel fulfillments, which can be near and far off. So just because Gabriel tells Daniel three times in chapter 8 that the vision pertains to the time of the end for Israel, that doesn’t exclude the historical (near) fulfillment of verses 3-8. For verses 9-12, I see Antiochus being a shadow of what is to come in the future.
    My other thought and advice for you is to consider and be open to the possibility that the little horn could rise up from literally anywhere in the world, instead of just from the Middle East. I know this challenges your Islamic Antichrist theory, but if we believe that the Antichrist can literally rise anytime now without the preconditions of the futurist view of Daniel 8, then I think it is wise to look at the power and authority he has over the whole earth in Revelation 13. What about the USA, Europe, Russia, and China? Is this Islamic dictator really going to have authority over all these nations too? That seems quite the stretch unless you only see the Antichrist’s authority as being over the entire Middle East. Not saying it’s impossible but I’m sure you would have to admit that much would have to change in geopolitical events around the world for that scenario to take place. I have a question for you about Daniel 9:26 and 27. Who do you identify as the armies who destroyed the temple of 70AD and the future ruler of these armies? Isn’t it obvious that this was Rome? Thanks.

  • Steven Greilach
    Posted at 21:18h, 27 April

    Joel, I thank God for you and for your tireless search of the scriptures for truth. It takes a lot of courage to stand apart from the crowd and take a contrarian position as well as to admit your changes of opinion on the air.

  • Joel
    Posted at 05:09h, 28 April

    Daniel 8 is clear that the little horn emerges from one of the four division of Alexander’s empire, specifically the Seleucid dynasty. Elsewhere, he is called Gog of Magog, the Assyrian, the Chaldean, etc. etc. Too many geographical titles to ignore and throw out the door.

  • Joel
    Posted at 05:11h, 28 April

    The mid-point of the seven years is when the Abomination that Causes Desolation begins.

  • Simon Pease
    Posted at 11:14h, 28 April

    Dear Joel,

    First, thank you for your integrity, openness and honesty, which is so helpful and refreshing.

    I want to very cautiously suggest an interpretation which might help with the challenging issues you have presented to us.

    Are the lion, bear and leopard historical or future? (Is the ram Persia and Iran, and the goat Alexander’s empire and Turkey?)

    Why this is asked:
    Because the historical details regarding the leopard / goat do not exactly match history. Also, the vision of Daniel 8 seems to be entirely future. The verb tense in Aramaic concerning the four beasts is ambiguous.

    Your analysis of the Nebuchadnezzar’s statue is correct, including your identification of the 7 heads of the beast in Revelation 17 (Islamic rather than Roman empire).

    Possible clue:
    Revelation’s portrayal of a 7-headed beast with 10 horns (chapters 12, 13, 17). The composite beast resembling a leopard, but with aspects of the lion and bear “once was, and now is not, and will come” (Rev 17:8).

    The leopard, lion and bear existed before Rome and will again in future. They are therefore both historical and future, but not present when Revelation was written. This verse alone disproves the Roman beast theory. (Because the 10 horns are also part of the beast that once was, this suggests that they will belong to the geographical area covered by these three beasts.) The text also seems to imply that the composite beast existed before and will do again (future revived Caliphate). Historically both Alexander’s empire and that of the Medes and Persians covered broadly the same area (see maps, Mideast Beast). The emphasis on the leopard as the dominant beast makes sense historically in light of the prophetic significance of the Greek empire (including the Seleucid dynasty from which Antiochus emerged), and a future Turkish revived Ottoman empire, from which the “little horn” arises. The four wings, four heads and four winds of heaven seem to align in Scripture and have a close (if perhaps simplified) fulfilment in Alexander’s empire. Also, the speed of the leopard and the ram “crossing the whole earth without touching the ground” resemble each other.

    Could the historical empires represented by the lion, bear and leopard also occur again the last days? Prophecy tends to have repeating patterns (e.g. the “abomination that causes desolation” and the destruction of the temple twice on the 9th Av). Futurists rightly discount the destruction of AD 70 as the fulfilment of Daniel because it does not match all the details. It is therefore possible that the historical lion, bear and leopard are intentionally strong shadows of future beasts, and perhaps the verb tense is also deliberately ambiguous in Aramaic. (Is it even possible that the switch back to Hebrew in Daniel 8 is a hint that Israel will exist at this time? This might be reaching too far.) If there is also a futurist interpretation, the 3 ribs in the bear’s mouth could represent an Iranian conquest of perhaps Syria, Iraq and Lebanon, for example.

    Possible problems:
    (1) If lion, bear and leopard do repeat, would this not mean that they are in fact beasts 8, 9, 10 in the sequence of Revelation 17? Perhaps they are not significant enough to compare with the historical empires. Alternatively, as Islamic nations they belong to the legs of iron and are therefore part of the 7th beast.
    (2) This potentially pushes Jesus’ return much further into the future. However, the Lord takes a much longer view of history than we do, even though events seem to be converging rapidly towards this blessed event.

    Footnote on Javan:
    Javan conveniently describes an area that includes parts of both Greece and Turkey, closely linking the historical nature of Alexander’s empire to what is to come. Indeed, the iron beast has bronze claws. Perhaps the revived Ottoman empire will include parts of modern-day Greece, the Balkans and Macedonia, which would reinforce the significance of the contrast between “iron and the clay”.

    Thank you and blessings.

  • Gary C
    Posted at 21:02h, 29 April
  • Steve Müller
    Posted at 02:44h, 01 May

    Hi Joel,
    Quick question — if the historical Antiochus Epiphanies foreshadows the future Antichrist, couldn’t a historical ram/goat clash foreshadow a future ram/goat clash ? In other words, is it possible to uphold the traditional interpretation of Daniel 8 while acknowledging that ALL of the chapter has prophetic significance, as per Gabriel’s statements?

  • Joel
    Posted at 05:22h, 01 May

    Its certainly possible, but not required.

  • Arthur J. Richner
    Posted at 08:23h, 01 May

    Dear Joel, thank you for this teaching. I am blessed by your books and have used much of your material. I believe I have read all your books and have been in agreement most of the time. The difficulty I am having is with your teaching on Daniel 7 which sees these first three as ancient kingdoms. I was also taught this in Bible School. Recently I viewed a video by Gavin Finley on the four beasts of Daniel 7 and if you did not see it, it is worth watching. He makes an excellent case for a future interpretation rather then fulfilled in the past. Just curious as to what you think of his argument

  • Joel
    Posted at 13:42h, 01 May

    I have not seen it. What are his main arguments summarized?

  • Steve Snyder
    Posted at 20:42h, 07 May

    Just a comment on Simon Pease’s question:

    According to Rev. the general shape of the Beast of the last days is a Leopard. I too take this to mean the AC and his Kingdom will come from the geographic area of the Old Greek Empire. This seems to be the focus of the Bible. Of course it has characteristics of the Lion and Bear, and has people groups from this area.

    There are not more than 7 heads (Kings) on any beast, but more “horns” and only one conglomeration “beast” IMO. Rev. 17 makes it clear the “Beast” is the eighth but one of the seven, so a resurrected empire/king it seems.

    The Red Dragon of Rev 12, comes from heaven and represents Satan. The Scarlet colored beast of Rev 17 comes out of the bottomless pit so is not dragon shaped IMO. I believe the Beast is red in color because the dragon gives it/him power, but the shape is the same as the Leopard described in Rev 13-which comes out of the nations and only getting Satan’s power for the last 3.5 years- thus the red, blood color. Also, the Dragon is watching the beast of Rev 13 coming out of the sea. So…

    I think the main takeaway is the both the beast empire and the man who leads it will be a resurrected King and Kingdom out of the area of the old Greece Empire or Javan- as Joel teaches. The man himself will be slain and then resurrected and be indwelt by someone out of the bottomless pit who has lived before, it seems to me. This is part of the deception the world will wonder at. Satan will have his man resurrected too.

    The Goat and Ram could be last day animals before the rise of the beast out of the sea, and we will know if Iran and Turkey go at it.

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