Daniel 7:1-28 Reading the Passage

A Much Needed Word of Assurance – Daniel 7:1-28

7 In the first year of Belshazzar king of Babylon, Daniel had a dream and visions passed through his mind as he lay upon his bed. He wrote down the dream and related the summary of it. (2) Daniel said, In my vision that came to me at night I was observing and there before me were the four winds of heaven churning up the great sea. (3) And four great beasts came up out of the sea, each one different from the others. (4) The first was like a lion, but it had the wings of an eagle. I watched until its wings were plucked and it was lifted off of the ground and made to stand on two feet like a man, and the heart of a man was given to it. (5) And there before me was another beast, a second one that was like a bear. It was raised up on one of its sides, and it had three ribs in its mouth between its teeth. They said to it, Get up and devour a great amount of flesh! (6) After this I looked, and there before me was another beast, this one was like a leopard. On its back it had four wings like those of a bird. The beast also had four heads, and it was given authority to rule. (7) After this, in the vision I received at night I looked and there before me was a fourth beast—dreadful and terrifying and extremely powerful. It had large iron teeth; it devoured its victims and broke them into pieces and trampled underfoot whatever was left. It was different from all the beasts that came before it, and it had ten horns. (8) While I was considering the horns, there before me another horn, a little one, came up among them. Three of the first horns were pulled out by the roots before it. This horn had eyes like the eyes of a man and a mouth uttering great things.

(9) I continued to look until thrones were set in place, and the one who was the Ancient of Days took his seat. His garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head was like pure wool. His throne was ablaze with flames and its wheels were a burning fire. (10) A river of fire was flowing and coming out from before him. Thousands upon thousands ministered to him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him. The court was seated and the books were opened. (11) At that time I watched because of the sound of the great words that the horn was speaking. I watched until the beast was killed and its body was destroyed and burned with fire. (12) (The other beasts had been deprived of their authority, but their lives had been prolonged for a period of time.) (13) In the vision I received at night I looked and there before me came one who was like a son of man on the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and he was brought into his presence. (14) He was given authority and glory and a kingdom, so that all the peoples, nations, and men of every language should serve him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that shall not be destroyed.

(15) I, Daniel, found my spirit distressed within me, and the visions that passed through my mind troubled me. (16) I approached one of those who was standing there and asked him the meaning of all this. So he told me and gave me the interpretation of these things. (17) These great beasts which are four in number, are four kingdoms that will rise from the earth. (18) But the saints of the Most High will receive the kingdom and possess the kingdom forever, indeed, forever and ever. (19) Then I wanted to know the meaning of the fourth beast, the one that was different from all the others, extremely terrifying with its teeth of iron and its claws of bronze—the beast that devoured its victims and broke them into pieces and then trampled underfoot whatever remained. (20) I also wanted to know about the ten horns that were on its head, and about the other horn that came up, before which three of the horns fell—the horn that had eyes and a mouth that uttered great things, and that looked more imposing than the others. (21) As I watched, this horn was waging war against the saints and was defeating them; (22) until the Ancient of Days came and a verdict was pronounced in favor of the saints of the Most High, and the time came for the saints to possess the kingdom.

(23) He gave me this explanation: The fourth beast will be a fourth kingdom on earth, one that will be different from all the other kingdoms; it shall devour the whole earth and trample it down and break it to pieces. (24) The ten horns represent ten kings who will come from this kingdom. Then another king shall come after them; he will be different from the previous ones, and he will subdue three kings. (25) He will utter words against the Most High and will wear out the saints of the Most High. He will try to change the set times and the natural laws; and the saints will be handed over to him for a time, times, and half a time. (26) But the court will sit in judgment, and they shall take away his dominion, consuming and destroying it totally. (27) Then the kingdom and the dominion, and the greatness of all the kingdoms under the whole heaven, will be given to the people who are the saints of the Most High—his kingdom is an everlasting kingdom and all dominions will serve and obey him. (28) At this point the revelation ended. I, Daniel, was deeply troubled by my thoughts, and my face turned pale. But I kept the matter to myself.

Now proceed to the next section of this study, entitled, Exploring the Passage.