Reading assignment: __Daniel 8
Focal verse(s): Daniel 8:16: “And I heard a man’s voice from the Ulai calling, “Gabriel, tell this man the meaning of the vision.”
It is not known exactly how much later Daniel received the vision of the He-goat, but this vision basically covered the same ground as the preceding vision. The higher horn of the ram represented the Persian part of the Medo-Persian Empire and the He-goat represented the Grecian empire that had the “notable horn” of Alexander the Great. In Daniel’s previous vision the leopard stood for the Greeks. The “little horn” comes out from the other horns and represents the Syrian ruler Antiochus Epiphanes who was a great oppressor of Jews during the inter-testament times, around the second century before Christ. The angel Gabriel made his first appearance in the Bible here in the form of a man in order to interpret the dream to Daniel. Gabriel explained that the dream stood for future times. Antiochus Epiphanes would punish the Jews just when they thought they were safe, but he would be destroyed by God. Antiochus would desecrate the temple for over three years before it would be cleansed (167-164 B.C.) by Judas Maccabeus in late 164 B.C. with the Jewish sacrifices being restored and Judah’s religious independence was regained in 163 B.C. This prophecy also goes beyond Antiochus Epiphanes to the Antichrist who will stand against the “Prince of Princes” (Jesus). Daniel was instructed to “seal up” the vision because it needed to be preserved for the future. Daniel was so overwrought by this vision experience he could not do anything for several days!