The Sage states: We now come to the part of Daniel’s prophecy that Christendom for the most part applies to the second coming of Christ. However, take a look at the evidence and see if that is really the case.
“The King (of the north), will exalt –himself above every God and he will prosper until the indignation is finished; for that which is decreed will be done” Dan 11:36. The third Macedonian War, June, 168 B.C.E., brought victory to Rome, and ended the centuries old monarchy and established four republics in Macedonia. Rome now became king of the North. Enc. Brit., 1972 Ed., Vol. 18, pg. 891, par. 6. In the years 30 to 9 B.C.E. Rome extended its Empire as king of the North.
“He entered countries, over flowed them and passed through—will enter the beautiful land (Palestine)–pitch his tents—and the beautiful holy mountain (Jerusalem) —and come to his end.” Rome came to its end in about 400 B.C. Dan 11:40-45. The Roman occupation allowed the death of Christ (Michael) on the torture stake in 33C.E. “The child was caught away to God and to the throne” Rev 12:5. The risen Christ, as Michael, “begin war in heaven” Satan lost sanctioned authority over the kingdoms of this world he was cast out down. Rev 12:7-12.
In Reply, the difficulty I see here is a failure to recognize the two distinct elements which would now compose the King of the North (the Roman Empire) a failure to differentiate between these two characters is what has led most bible scholars to misinterpret this prophecy.
Following the return of Emperor Aurelian to Rome after the defeat of the King of the South (Queen Zenobia), and after his death at the hands of his generals as recorded in Verses 25, 26, and 28 we now wish to take special note of Verse 27.
“Both of these kings’ hearts shall be bent on evil, and they shall speak lies at the same table; but it shall not prosper, for the end will still be at the appointed time.”
This is a rather strange verse to be inserted here, who are these two kings’ found sitting at the same table? Certainly it is not the King of the North and the King of the South who are found eating at the same table, there is no King of the South she was defeated, deposed, and taken captive by Aurelian (the nation itself still remains but its king or rulership has been removed now being governed by Rome). Once again the Lord carefully seals up and closes the prophecy by so arranging the order of things so as to conceal the truth from the worldly wise and to hide it from those for whom it was intended, until the due time for its disclosure, “the time of the end”. (Dan 12:4, 9, 10)
“Verse 27 (as we had stated earlier) applies NOT to Rome and Egypt, but to two kings or powers IN the Roman empire–the Imperial power gradually dying AND the Clerical power slowly coming to life and ambition (2 Thess 2:7). Each sought to use the other for its own selfish ends, while denying such designs. It reads: “And the heart of the two kings shall be to do mischief, and they shall speak lies at one table; but it shall not prosper [then], because as yet the end is unto another time.” Or, to express the thought more plainly, a certain period of 1260 years had been appointed of God as the length of Papacy’s persecuting power; hence the union or league between the clergy and the civil power could “not prosper” then, because the 1260 years counted from that date would bring “the end” too soon; therefore it must be put off, or held back, and allowed to come about gradually by the decay of the empire in Italy. We see on the pages of ecclesiastical history the scheming of the Christian bishops for power in the Roman Empire; and evidently the emperors debated much whether it would not be to their advantage to recognize the new religion. Apparently Constantine merely acted out, at a riper time, what others had more or less thought of. But even Constantine was hindered by the temper of the people from accomplishing at once and as rapidly as was desired a union of the forces of church and state.” (C 34, 35)
It should be recalled in Chapter 7 that when Daniel first had his vision of the fourth beast “dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly” (which all readily concede is a picture of the forth universal empire, Pagan Rome) that he likewise noticed that it had ten horns upon its head and as he was considering these horns another horn, a “little horn” appeared coming up among them, before which three of the first horns were plucked out by the roots (Verses 7, 8) this “little horn” the angel latter explained to Daniel in Verses 24, 25 viz.
“The ten horns are ten kings (powers or kingdoms) which shall arise from this kingdom (the forth universal empire) and another (horn, the “little horn”) shall arise after them; he shall be different from the first ones, and shall subdue three kings (or kingdoms). He shall speak pompous words against the Most High, and shall persecute (i.e. wear out) the saints of the Most High, and shall intend to change times and law. Then the saints shall be given into his hand for a time and times and half a time.
Time………………………………… 360 years
Time(s) plural……………………….. 720 years
Half of a time …………………………180 years
= 1260 years
Here is shown the two kings or powers IN the Roman Empire, the ecclesiastical or religious rulership (Papal Rome), one of which would in due time gain supremacy over the first, the civil or imperial rulership (Pagan Rome) i.e. the “fiery red dragon” of (Rev 12:3).
“We likewise regard Verses 29 and 30 of Chapter 11 as a parenthesis, thrown in to conceal the meaning for a time by breaking the order of the narrative, and believe it to apply to a then far future collision between the representatives of the Roman Empire and Egypt. No further conflict between these would occur except one, and it would be just at “the time appointed”—the time of the end, 1799.” (C 35)
“The Pastor related Verse 31 to Verse 27. Verse 27 reads, “And both these kings’ hearts shall be to do mischief, and they shall speak lies at one table; but it shall not prosper: for yet the [Time of the] end shall be at the time appointed [and shall not occur prematurely].” The two “kings” were clerical power (Papacy) and civil power (Rome). While ostensibly agreeing, they each had ulterior motives and were each suspicious about the other. Each power had its own interests at heart. Of the two powers, Papacy particularly prospered.
The Roman emperor Constantine, who had great power and authority, recognized that the Christian religion had many, many adherents, and the adherents had proved earlier, in the ten-year Diocletian persecution, that they did not fear death. Admiring the Christian dedication to suffer unto death, Constantine wanted to absorb this element into his empire and thus strengthen his civil power. However, being worldly, he could not distinguish between true Christians and nominal Christians. The name and the reputation of the martyrs extended to the nominal group, who did not merit or warrant them. Thus Constantine favored nominal Christianity, thinking it was the dedicated element.
In Aurelius’s day, but more importantly and later in Constantine’s day, the two powers were sitting “at one table,” each thinking of absorbing the other, Nominal Christianity felt that when religion converted the world, the Kingdom of God would be established (but it was the false Kingdom). Thus they wanted to have civil as well as clerical power. Ostensibly, the two powers were having a friendly dialog, but in reality each power was trying to use the other. Of the two kings, Papacy won out in 539 A.D. when the Emperor Justinian ascended the throne and acknowledged the bishop of Rome as the head of the Church. Justinian’s motive was to unify the eastern and western portions of the Roman Empire, thereby strengthening his own power. He was the civil head of the empire, and the bishop of Rome was the ecclesiastical head. However, the unification actually sounded the death knell for the Imperial (Civil) or Pagan Roman Empire, for afterwards it became the Holy Roman Empire. From then on, the pope was present for the crowning of emperors. To ignore him would have brought excommunication, an awesome power.
The Pastor connected Verse 31 with Verse 27, saying that the intervening verses were purposely placed there by the Holy Spirit as a temporary block to understanding. The usual interpretation (that is that which is followed by the majority of bible scholars) is that much of Chapter 11 was fulfilled prior to the Gospel Age. The Pastor reasoned differently from these in that he believed the chapter embraced both Old and New Testament time’s right down to relatively current history. If verse 31 is interpreted as occurring after verse 27, the chapter has a coherent flow.” (The Book of Daniel, Page 140, 141)
We will continue with this in our next post with the hope of addressing some of the specifics of The Sage’s remarks here.