Decoding Daniel - an in depth Bible study of the book of Daniel

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Daniel 2

Outline and Background

Nebuchadnezzar's Dream - Daniel 2:1-11

Nebuchadnezzar's Folly - Daniel 2:12-13

Daniel's Wisdom - Daniel 2:14-16

Daniel's Request - Daniel 2:17-18

Daniel's Vision and Praise - Daniel 2:19-23

Interpretation of Nebuchadnezzar's Dream - Daniel 2:24-45

The Image is Four Empires

The Everlasting Empire

Eschatology of the Mt Olivet Discourse

Christ's Kingdom

Nebuchadnezzar's Declaration - Daniel 2:46-49

Application and Typical Prophecies

The Everlasting Kingdom

The fifth kingdom will not be another attempt by man to rule the world apart from God. It will not come into existence by human hands. The
Nba (“rock” or “stone”) is none other than the Lord Jesus Christ, “the stone the builders rejected has become the capstone” (Psalm 118:22; Matthew 21:42; 1 Peter 2:8). “Rock” is a symbolic name applied to the Messiah.

For they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ (1 Corinthians 10:4).

Zechariah, the prophet of the sixth century B.C., describes the arrival of the Rock that will crush the Revived Roman Empire and scatter it to the wind.

On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem, and the Mount of Olives will be split in two from east to west, forming a great valley, with half of the mountain moving north and half moving south (Zechariah 14:4).

Christ’s kingdom, a mountain, not cut by human hands, will fill the earth. All commentators agree that this verse describes the founding of the Kingdom of God. Those who do not believe that Jesus Christ is going to come and reign over His earthly Kingdom for a thousand years are called “amillennialists” and “covenant theologians.” They claim this verse is referring to the spiritual Kingdom of Christ, which is being set up in the hearts of men. They see the Church as the mountain that fills the whole earth and crushes the Ancient Roman Empire, not the revived one of the last days. However, there is no coexistence of Rome and the Kingdom of God depicted in the dream. The exact opposite is the case.

Moreover, the striking of the image is not gradual, it is sudden, violent, catastrophic and complete, totally deviating from the Church and its great commission (Matthew 28:18-20).

“Postmillennialists” believe that the world will be converted by the Church prior to Christ’s return. However, the Church has not been promised any victory over the world (cf. Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43; 2 Timothy 2:1-12). The opposite is predicted. The present age will end in apostasy and rebellion, winding down with the rise of the man of lawlessness, rather than with the Church overcoming the world (2 Thessalonians 2:1-12).

To apply this prophecy to the Church is to invite confusion. The Church has been here for almost two thousand years and pagan Gentile sovereignty has not been destroyed. The Church will never overcome the world; it will be raptured prior to the Lamb’s wrath. This wrath begins
with Christ’s opening of the seven-sealed scroll and ends with His return to strike down the nations (Revelation 5-19). Paul asserts that those in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ are excluded from wrath.

For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Thessalonians 5:9; cf. 5:1-8).

The Rock that smites the image does not begin to grow until the image has entirely disappeared; then it fills the whole earth. Thus are portrayed the events prior to the Millennial Kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ when He returns as “KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS” (Revelation 19:16).

Each of the four empires are literal, political, physical, and earthly kingdoms, and therefore, the fifth and final kingdom should be interpreted the same. It does not make sense to have a spiritual kingdom introduced into a prophecy that is dealing with physical kingdoms in history. Unlike all other kingdoms, the earthly Kingdom that God establishes will neither be destroyed, nor fade away, nor be taken over by another people.

It is important to recognize that Nebuchadnezzar saw in his dream the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver and the gold broken to pieces at the same time and becoming like chaff on a threshing-floor in the summer. The wind swept them away without leaving a trace. History shows that the political, religious and cultural characteristics of each kingdom were assimilated by succeeding empires, not so with Christ’s kingdom. The characteristics of the preceding empires will be swept away like chaff in the wind without leaving a trace.

“Summer” is a code word for the Tribulation Period, the Time of Jacob’s Trouble (cf. Jeremiah 30:4-11). During the Mount Olivet Discourse, Jesus referred to this period as summer in His Parable of the Fig Tree.

Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near,
right at the door. I tell you the truth, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened (Matthew 24:32-34).

After pronouncing seven woes on the teachers of the law and the Pharisees (Matthew 23:1-36) and lamenting over faithless Jerusalem (23:37-39), Christ once again announced the forthcoming judgment on Jerusalem.

Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to him to call his attention to its buildings. “Do you see all these things?" he asked. “I tell you the truth, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.” As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” (Matthew 24:1-3).

The first question, “when will this happened?” had a near future fulfillment. On July 28, A.D. 70, Titus’ army destroyed the Temple.

With distant future predictions, Jesus answered their second question, “What will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” Moving chronologically through the Mount Olivet Discourse, He revealed God’s eschatological plan for both the nation of Israel and the world in Matthew 24:4-25:46.

Bible Studies by Bob Conway

Unsealing Revelation

Experiencing Exodus

Book of James

Life and Passion of Christ

The Holy Spirit

How to Study the Bible

Romans Salvation

Life of the Apostle Paul

Other studies at Spreading Light Bible Studies

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