Revelation of the End Times - Part 2

    The Kings of the South and of the North - Part 2

In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia, a revelation was given to Daniel (who was called Belteshazzar). Its message was true and it concerned a great war. The understanding of the message came to him in a vision.
...
On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I was standing on the bank of the great river, the Tigris, I looked up and there before me was a man dressed in linen, with a belt of the finest gold around his waist. His body was like chrysolite, his face like lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and his voice like the sound of a multitude.
...
A hand touched me and set me trembling on my hands and knees. He said, "Daniel, you who are highly esteemed, consider carefully the words I am about to speak to you, and stand up, for I have now been sent to you." And when he said this to me, I stood up trembling.
...
(details of the vision continue)
"He
(the king of the South) will be succeeded by a contemptible person who has not been given the honor of royalty. He will invade the kingdom when its people feel secure, and he will seize it through intrigue. Then an overwhelming army will be swept away before him; both it and a prince of the covenant will be destroyed (broken in ESV)."
...
The two kings
(of the South and of the North), with their hearts bent on evil, will sit at the same table and lie to each other, but to no avail, because an end will still come at the appointed time. The king of the North will return to his own country with great wealth, but his heart will be set against the holy covenant. He will take action against it and then return to his own country."

"At the appointed time he will invade the South again, but this time the outcome will be different from what it was before. Ships of the western coastlands will oppose him, and he will lose heart. Then he will turn back and vent his fury against the holy covenant. He will return and show favor to those who forsake the holy covenant."

"His armed forces will rise up to desecrate the temple fortress and will abolish the daily sacrifice. Then they will set up the abomination that causes desolation. With flattery he will corrupt those who have violated the covenant, but the people who know their God will firmly resist him."

"Those who are wise will instruct many, though for a time they will fall by the sword or be burned or captured or plundered. When they fall, they will receive a little help, and many who are not sincere will join them. Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time."

Daniel 10:1,4-6,10-11; 11:21-22,27-35 (NIV)

The sobering prophecy of wars in the heavens and on earth, and between the two, is continued in this portion of the Book of Daniel.

On the one hand, evil will seem to prevail:
- defeat
"a prince of the covenant will be broken"
- deceit
"intrigue" ("flatteries" ESV)
- depravity
"hearts bent on evil"
"heart... set against the holy covenant"
- deception
"lie to each other"
"with flattery he will corrupt"
- desecration
"abolish the daily sacrifice" in the temple
"the abomination that causes desolation" set up in the temple
- delusion
"corrupt those who have violated the covenant" with God

On the other hand, there will be:
- suffering
"for a time they will fall by the sword or be burned or captured or plundered"
- scarce support
"they will receive a little help"
- self-sacrifice
"the people who know their God will firmly resist"
- sanctification
"some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless"

But the balance is always tipped in favor of God's sovereignty; and the recurring phrase
"at the appointed time" outweighs all else.

Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.