2006-09-24 - Daniel
Verse 39: In this one verse, we find two more kingdoms. Again there is pretty much consistency in considering who is the first of these two kingdoms.
"The breast and arms of silver-The Medo-Persian kingdom (539-330 B.C.) Darius the Mede conquered Babylon (Dan. 5:30-31). 5
"Two arms coming together to form one breast pictured this kingdom perfectly. Two distinct peoples, the Medes and the Persians, were united together in 550 B.C. under the same king to form one great power. Why was silver a fitting representation of the Medo-Persian kingdom? In ancient times, silver signified money; silver was the standard of value and the medium of exchange. Medo-Persia became noted for basing its power on money which was collected through an extensive tax system (Ezra 4:136 Dan. 11:2)" 6
Keep in mind that with prophecy God often provides short-term fulfillment in order to validate the long-term. This second empire overtook Babylon in Daniel's own time, and since then, we have seen the fulfillment of the third and fourth, which in turn reassures us that the heavenly kingdom will also come to pass. There is disagreement among some as to who makes up the third kingdom. Some Jewish scholars believe it is a combined Greek/Roman Empire. The primary reason for taking this position is a belief that the fourth is either the Arab peoples or the religious one, Christianity. But this position isn't the generally accepted view of Judaism, which is in lime with the normal Christian understanding, that is the three kingdom is Greece.
"The belly and thighs of bronze-The Grecian kingdom (330-63B.C.). Alexander the Great established what was probably the largest empire in ancient times. He died in 323. B.C." 7
Again quoting Showers:
"This would be the kingdom of Greece under Alexander the Great and his successors. One belly subdivided into two thighs was an excellent way for God to portray the Grecian kingdom ahead of time. After Alexander had unified his kingdom, he died at a young age. His kingdom was divided among his four leading generals. However, only tow of the divisions played an important role in history. Those two division headquartered in Syria and Egypt. Why did God represent Greece with bronze? The Greeks developed this material highly and used it extensively in their implements of war. Thus, their kingdom was character by bronze." 8
6 Showers, p. 18.6 Showers, p. 18.
To be continued.
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