4 But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.
5 Then I Daniel looked, and, behold, there stood other two, the one on this side of the bank of the river, and the other on that side of the bank of the river.
6 And one said to the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?
7 And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.
8 And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things?
9 And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.
10 Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.
11 And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days.
12 Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days.
13 But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.
Shut Up the Words … Seal Up the Book
Daniel is told in no uncertain terms that his vision is not for today-and that his revelation will only be understood at the time of the end. For this reason many of the prophecies dealing with the revived Roman Empire, mentioned in Daniel chapter two in the form of the image, as well as the four beasts so accurately described in Daniel chapter seven, would not be understood until the time of the end when the book would be unsealed and revealed.
Historically, none of Daniel’s vision made much sense to Bible scholars until 1890, when Dr. Gabaelein began to teach that a revived Roman Empire would come into play during the time of the end. Therefore, the terminology “shut up the words until the time of the end” only became operative in an unprecedented way at the beginning of the twentieth century.
This is when we also began to understand clearly that a great nation would march against Israel (Ezekiel 38 and 39) and that this enemy would come from the north. We’ve already seen in Daniel 11:40 how the king of the South (Egypt) and the king of the North (Russia) would unite to engage in a blitzkrieg, the likes of which the world has never seen previously. No one could make much sense of Daniel’s vision until certain world events began to reveal themselves to God’s servants.
Today, we understand how it will all happen.
But when does it occur? “When many run to and fro and knowledge is increased.”
There is a dual interpretation in this text. First, travel is reaching unparalleled proportions and knowledge is doubling every twenty-two months.
The secondary meaning is:
that during the time of the end an inordinate fascination for knowledge about latter-day predictions would increase, with people running “to and fro” to learn everything possible concerning the prophecies about the returning King. This is where we are today in this sequence of end-time events. Soon, the Savior will call His Church away to be with Him, after which He returns seven years later, with His people, to rule and reign. It’s all beginning to take shape-just as the Holy Spirit, through Daniel, said it would.
Time, Times, and a Half Time
Again, Daniel is joined by two angels who come to give him further insight into historical matters concerning the time of the end. Daniel remains inquisitive. He wants to know what is going to take place in the long run-and he is especially curious as to what will happen to his people, the Jews, during the latter days before the Messiah appears. The one angel responds by saying that time, times, and a half time will bring all these things to a conclusion. What things, and what is meant by this expression? The angel is referring to the terrible battle that takes place in Daniel chapter eleven when the king of the South (Egypt) ultimately invades Israel, leading an Arab federation and joined by the king of the North (Russia).
This first wave of troops was discussed in chapter eleven. Next, China enters the fray with her two hundred million soldiers, accompanied by the remnants of Russia’s previously defeated army, for the second wave of the Armageddon campaign (Daniel 11:44). This is the information Daniel received, but it was not necessarily the message he wanted to hear.
But what about the seemingly cryptic phrase that time, times, and a half time will bring all these things to a conclusion? Remember that Russia begins her move into the area during the middle of the Tribulation hour-just after the Antichrist breaks his peace treaty with Israel. Time=one year; times=two more years; and a half time=half a year, the total of which is three and one-half years-precisely the concluding portion of the Tribulation period. The forty-two months of Revelation 13:5 are translated as 1,260 days in Revelation 11:3 and 12:6. These terrible battles will occur for forty-two months, right up to the exact moment that the beast and his armies battle Jesus Christ as recorded in Revelation 19:11-21.
This is the third and final portion of the Armageddon campaign as thoroughly explained in the previous chapter. Then as Christ appears, the words of Isaiah 2:4 become a reality: “He shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.” But it is going to take the real Prince-the Lord Jesus Christ-to bring history to this final, tranquil conclusion, the one whose name is the “Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6).
Tribulation Works Patience
At this time, because of the mayhem and terror that’s taking place in the Holy Land, the people will flee and be scattered. Matthew 24:16-21 says,
“Then let them which be in Judea flee into the mountains: Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house: Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes. And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter neither on the sabbath day: For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.“
Imagine how Daniel must have felt as he once again heard the prophecies of gloom and doom coming from the mouths of two angels who informed him that everything he now heard was for the time of the end.
The angel said one more thing. It was about many being purified, or made white, people who would have understanding and also about those who were wicked, and who, in their wickedness, would not be able to understand the things of God. First Corinthians 2:14 says that the natural man, the one who is unsaved, does not understand the things of God. To such people they are foolishness. They can’t understand them because they have no spiritual discernment. On the other hand, God’s people-especially those who’ve gone through the mill- will have divine insight into these things because they, as God’s faithful servants, have experienced such trials and have been purified through these times of testing.
The apostle Paul said that tribulation works patience within us. It makes us into something. Therefore, those who have been through pain and suffering-but who, in the process, have remained close to the Lord, and have read His Word, and have prayed in faith, believing, and have understood the things of God through the Holy Spirit’s enlightenment-will have all these predictions revealed to them. But those who have hardened their hearts through wickedness will go to the time of the end totally ignorant of and carelessly indifferent to the latter-day predictions.
1,260 days… 1,290 days
∑: If you’ve done the arithmetic found in this text, you may be wondering how the angels come up with 1,260, then 1,290, and then 1,335 days. Again, the Word of God is always meticulously correct and on schedule. With this in mind, an announcement is made that soon the millennial Kingdom will be established, but that a time of consecration is first necessary. To help us understand why this is so necessary, let’s take a quick side-trip to 2 Chronicles 30:2-4 where we read,
“The king had taken counsel, and his princes, and all the congregation in Jerusalem, to keep the passover in the second month. For they could not keep it at that time, because the priests had not sanctified themselves sufficiently, neither had the people gathered themselves together to Jerusalem. And the thing pleased the king and all the congregation.“
King Hezekiah said that there could be no Passover because there was a need to consecrate the priests- something that would take thirty days. This is a beautiful picture of why an additional thirty-day period will be necessary for God’s people to prepare themselves spiritually to rule and reign with Christ for the greatest event in history.
So, as we look at the additional number, 1,290 days, instead of seeing a discrepancy, we simply need to investigate other portions of Scripture, as we just did, to see the reason. But there’s another forty-five-day period mentioned in our text.
Here’s why: When Christ returns, He judges the nations and their people, and His decree decides whether or not they’re qualified to enter His glorious kingdom for a thousand years (Matthew 25:31-46). This judgment undoubtedly takes an additional forty-five days! Thus, we end up with a total of seventy-five days in addition to the 1,260 days. There is no contradiction. Here’s why-forty-five days are needed to determine who enters the millennial period, and thirty days are needed to train God’s people for Kingdom service for administering the laws of the Kingdom, as described in Matthew chapters five through seven.
Now as we come to the final verse of the Book of Daniel, this great saint and man of God is in his nineties. The angel tells him to “go his way till the end be: for he shall rest, and stand in his lot at the end of his days.” The angel is simply saying that there will be a soon-approaching moment when Daniel will die and rest from his labors. But the angel adds that a glorious day is coming when Daniel and all believing Jews shall stand up and be raised from the dead to rule and reign with Christ.
One group of saints, who lived through the Tribulation period, are selected in Matthew 25:31-45 and enter the Kingdom in their natural bodies. Then there’s the group of believers who died during the Tribulation hour and are resurrected at approximately the time the Jewish Old Testament saints are raised. These resurrected Old Testament saints and Tribulation believers will dwell in the Holy City in glorified bodies and will, together, rule and reign with Jesus Christ for a thousand years along with the raptured believers who return with the Lord.
They represent all resurrected believers from among both Jews and Christians. May I reiterate what I’ve just stated so that no one can misinterpret or misunderstand the portion of Scripture just analyzed. There will be four groups sharing Christ’s kingdom for one thousand years. » The believers who are selected at Christ’s return and are invited to enter the kingdom in their physical bodies (Matthew 25:34). » The Old Testament Jewish believers covering a period of four thousand years who are raised from the dead at Christ’s return to enter the kingdom in glorified bodies similar to the raptured of group one (Daniel 12:2). » The believers, both Jews and Gentiles, who died for Christ during the Tribulation period and are raised from the dead upon the Savior’s second coming (Revelation 20:4).
At this point, the angel is saying to Daniel: “Hallelujah! You will be there among them! You’ve been through tough times, Daniel, and have been faithful to the end. Daniel, you will be greatly rewarded.“
They represent all resurrected believers from among both Jews and Christians.
May I reiterate what I’ve just stated so that no one can misinterpret or misunderstand the portion of Scripture just analyzed.
There will be four groups sharing Christ’s kingdom for one thousand years.
» The believers who are selected at Christ’s return and are invited to enter the kingdom in their physical bodies (Matthew 25:34).
» The Old Testament Jewish believers covering a period of four thousand years who are raised from the dead at Christ’s return to enter the kingdom in glorified bodies similar to the raptured of group one (Daniel 12:2).
» The believers, both Jews and Gentiles, who died for Christ during the Tribulation period and are raised from the dead upon the Savior’s second coming (Revelation 20:4).
Personally, I believe that Daniel will be one of the rulers during that thousand-year reign of Christ on earth. Daniel certainly had great administrative experience serving under six kings.
However, the greatest moment for this man who prayed fearlessly in front of an open window, who slept serenely one night in a den of some two hundred lions, who was lied about and set up to be killed by his palace “friends,” will be the moment when he serves the King of Kings, the Lord Jesus Christ, for a thousand years-a time when you and I shall also share in God’s blessings.
And thus we come to the close of the Book of Daniel, and a look at the final end-time mysteries that have now been unsealed. We have seen how the Book of Daniel clearly demonstrates the sovereign rule of almighty God over the affairs of men. We have seen prophecy after prophecy fulfilled, all verifiable and documented by secular and religious history. We have observed that God remains in control and will until the time of the end, giving the Gentile world dominance until Christ returns.
He Is Coming Soon
If you are a follower of this One who is coming soon, you can be assured that you will not have to endure the pain and suffering of the Great Tribulation hour. Such cannot be said for those who continue to turn their backs on God, and who choose to live out their own agendas. Now is the time of salvation. Our Lord Jesus Christ is coming soon. Will you be caught up to meet Christ-to later return with Him as he establishes His millennial Kingdom? There are simply too many signs pointing to the time of the end not to take this message to heart. The Book of Daniel has finally been unsealed and revealed for those who have eyes to see. The time for Christ’s return is near.
It is my prayer that you have not read this book just as so much interesting ancient history. It is much more than that. It is a carefully crafted blueprint for the time of the end. But the key to understanding this book is not in being able to understand every nuance, each beast, the little horn, or any other veiled prophecy contained in this work. Instead, it is in knowing the living Word-the Lord Jesus Christ-the One who is coming soon.
I close this volume with a quote from one of the most respected biblical scholars of our era, Dr. John F. Walvoord, who stated in his book Daniel:
» When the plan of God has run its full course, it will be evident then with even more clarity than at present that God has not allowed a word to fall to the ground. As Christ said while on earth, “Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled” (Matthew 5:18).’
To which I only add, Come quickly, Lord Jesus. Maranatha!
A MESSAGE OF HOPE FROM DR. JACK VAN IMPE