Daniel Chapter 8 |
1In the third year of the reign of King Belshazzar, a vision appeared to me, to me, Daniel, after the one that had appeared to me earlier. 2I saw in the vision—at the time I saw it I was in the fortress of Shushan, in the province of Elam—I saw in the vision that I was beside the Ulai River. 3I looked and saw a ram standing between me and the river; he had two horns; the horns were high, with one higher than the other, and the higher sprouting last. 4I saw the ram butting westward, northward, and southward. No beast could withstand him, and there was none to deliver from his power. He did as he pleased and grew great. 5As I looked on, a he-goat came from the west, passing over the entire earth without touching the ground. The goat had a conspicuous horn on its forehead. 6He came up to the two-horned ram that I had seen standing between me and the river and charged at him with furious force. 7I saw him reach the ram and rage at him; he struck the ram and broke its two horns, and the ram was powerless to withstand him. He threw him to the ground and trampled him, and there was none to deliver the ram from his power. 8Then the he-goat grew very great, but at the peak of his power his big horn was broken. In its place, four conspicuous horns sprouted toward the four winds of heaven. 9From one of them emerged a small horn, which extended itself greatly toward the south, toward the east, and toward the beautiful land. 10It grew as high as the host of heaven and it hurled some stars of the [heavenly] host to the ground and trampled them. 11It vaunted itself against the very chief of the host; on its account the regular offering was suspended, and His holy place was abandoned. 12An army was arrayed iniquitously against the regular offering; it hurled truth to the ground and prospered in what it did.
13Then I heard a holy being speaking, and another holy being said to whoever it was who was speaking, “How long will [what was seen in] the vision last—the regular offering be forsaken because of transgression; the sanctuary be surrendered and the [heavenly] host be trampled?” 14He answered me, “For twenty-three hundred evenings and mornings; then the sanctuary shall be cleansed.” 15While I, Daniel, was seeing the vision, and trying to understand it, there appeared before me one who looked like a man. 16I heard a human voice from the middle of Ulai calling out, “Gabriel, make that man understand the vision.” 17He came near to where I was standing, and as he came I was terrified, and fell prostrate. He said to me, “Understand, O man, that the vision refers to the time of the end.” 18When he spoke with me, I was overcome by a deep sleep as I lay prostrate on the ground. Then he touched me and made me stand up, 19and said, “I am going to inform you of what will happen when wrath is at an end, for [it refers] to the time appointed for the end.
20“The two-horned ram that you saw [signifies] the kings of Media and Persia; 21and the buck, the he-goat—the king of Greece; and the large horn on his forehead, that is the first king. 22One was broken and four came in its stead—that [means]: four kingdoms will arise out of a nation, but without its power. 23When their kingdoms are at an end, when the measure of transgression has been filled, then a king will arise, impudent and versed in intrigue. 24He will have great strength, but not through his own strength. He will be extraordinarily destructive; he will prosper in what he does, and destroy the mighty and the people of holy ones. 25By his cunning, he will use deceit successfully. He will make great plans, will destroy many, taking them unawares, and will rise up against the chief of chiefs, but will be broken, not by [human] hands. 26What was said in the vision about evenings and mornings is true. Now you keep the vision a secret, for it pertains to far-off days.” 27So I, Daniel, was stricken, and languished many days. Then I arose and attended to the king’s business, but I was dismayed by the vision and no one could explain it.