Daniel 12:13
But go you your way till the end be: for you shall rest, and stand in your lot at the end of the days.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(13) In thy lot.—The reference is to the partition of Palestine by lot in the times of Joshua. Even so shall one greater than Joshua divide the heavenly Canaan among His saints who follow Daniel in faith, firmness, and consistency. (See Colossians 1:12.)

Daniel

A NEW YEARS MESSAGE

Daniel 12:13
.

Daniel had been receiving partial insight into the future by the visions recorded in previous chapters. He sought for clearer knowledge, and was told that the book of the future was sealed and closed, so that no further enlightenment was possible for him. But duty was clear, whatever might be dark; and there were some things in the future certain, whatever might be problematic. So he is bidden back to the common paths of life, and is enjoined to pursue his patient course with an eye on the end to which it conducts, and to leave the unknown future to unfold itself as it may.

I do not need, I suppose, to point the application. Anticipations of what may be before us have, no doubt, been more or less in the minds of all of us in the last few days. The cast of them will have been very different, according to age and present circumstances. But bright or dark, hopes or dreads, they reveal nothing. Sometimes we think we see a little way ahead, and then swirling mists hide all.

So I think that the words of my text may help us not only to apprehend the true task of the moment, but to discriminate between the things in the unknown future that are hidden and those that stand clear. There are three points, then, in this message-the journey, the pilgrim’s resting-place, and the final home. ‘Go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.’ Let us, then, look at these three points briefly.

I. The journey.

That is a threadbare metaphor for life. But threadbare as it is, its significance is inexhaustible. But before I deal with it, note that very significant ‘but’ with which my text begins. The Prophet has been asking for a little more light to shine on the dark unknown that stretches before him. And his request is negatived-’But go thou thy way.’ In the connection that means, ‘Do not waste your time in dreaming about, or peering into, what you can never see, but fill the present with strenuous service.’ ‘Go thou thy way.’ Never mind the far-off issues; the step before you is clear, and that is all that concerns you. Plod along the path, and leave to-morrow to take care of itself. There is a piece of plain practical wisdom, none the less necessary for us to lay to heart because it is so obvious and commonplace.

And then, if we turn to the emblem with which the continuity of daily life and daily work is set forth here, as the path along which we travel, how much wells up in the shape of suggestion, familiar, it may be, but very needful and wholesome for us all to lay to heart!

The figure implies perpetual change. The landscape glides past us, and we travel on through it. How impossible it would be for us older people to go back to the feelings, to the beliefs, to the tone and the temper with which we used to look at life thirty or forty years ago! Strangely and solemnly, like the silent motion of some gliding scene in a theatre, bit by bit, inch by inch, change comes over all surroundings, and, saddest of all, in some aspects, over ourselves.

‘We all are changed, by still degrees,

All but the basis of the soul.’

And it is foolish for us ever to forget that we live in a state of things in which constant alteration is the law, as surely as, when the train whizzes through the country, the same landscape never meets the eye twice, as the traveller looks through the windows. Let us, then, accept the fact that nothing abides with us, and so not be bewildered nor swept away from our moorings, nor led to vain regrets and paralysing retrospects when the changes that must come do come, sometimes slowly and imperceptibly, sometimes with stunning suddenness, like a bolt out of the blue. If life is truly represented under the figure of a journey, nothing is more certain than that we sleep in a fresh hospice every night, and leave behind us every day scenes that we shall never traverse again. What madness, then, to be putting out eager and desperate hands to clutch what must be left, and so to contradict the very law under which we live!

Then another of the well-worn commonplaces which are so believed by us all that we never think about them, and therefore need to be urged, as I am trying, poorly enough, to do now-another of the commonplaces that spring from this image is that life is continuous. Geologists used to be divided into two schools, one of whom explained everything by invoking great convulsions, the other by appealing to the uniform action of laws. There are no convulsions in life. To-morrow is the child of to-day, and yesterday was the father of this day. What we are, springs from what we have been, and settles what we shall be. The road leads somewhither, and we follow it step by step. As the old nursery rhyme has it-

‘One foot up and one foot down,

That’s the way to London town.’

We make our characters by the continual repetition of small actions. Let no man think of his life as if it were a heap of unconnected points. It is a chain of links that are forged together inseparably. Let no man say, ‘I do this thing, and there shall be no evil consequences impressed upon my life as results of it.’ It cannot be. ‘To-morrow shall be as this day, and much more abundant.’ We shall to-morrow be more of everything that we are to-day, unless by some strong effort of repentance and change we break the fatal continuity, and make a new beginning by God’s grace. But let us lay to heart this, as a very solemn truth which lifts up into mystical and unspeakable importance the things that men idly call trifles, that life is one continuous whole, a march towards a definite end.

And therefore we ought to see to it that the direction in which our life runs is one that conscience and God can approve. And, since the rapidity with which a body falls increases as it falls, the more needful that we give the right direction and impulses to the life. It will be a dreadful thing if our downward course acquires strength as it travels, and being slow at first, gains in celerity, and accrues to itself mass and weight, like an avalanche started from an Alpine summit, which is but one or two bits of snow and ice at first, and falls at last into the ravine, tons of white destruction. The lives of many of us are like it.

Further, the metaphor suggests that no life takes its fitting course unless there is continuous effort. There will be crises when we have to run with panting breath and strained muscles. There will be long stretches of level commonplace where speed is not needed, but ‘pegging away’ is, and the one duty is persistent continuousness in a course. But whether the task of the moment is to ‘run and not be weary,’ or to ‘walk and not faint,’ crises and commonplace stretches of land alike require continuous effort, if we are to ‘run with patience the race that is set before us.’

Mark the emphasis of my text, ‘Go thy way till the end.’ You, my contemporaries, you older men! do not fancy that in the deepest aspect any life has ever a period in it in which a man may ‘take it easy.’ You may do that in regard to outward things, and it is the hope and the reward of faithfulness in youth and middle age that, when the grey hairs come to be upon us, we may slack off a little in regard to outward activity. But in regard to all the deepest things of life, no man may ever lessen his diligence until he has attained the goal.

Some of you will remember how, in a stormy October night, many years ago, the Royal Charter went down when three hours from Liverpool, and the passengers had met in the saloon and voted a testimonial to the captain because he had brought them across the ocean in safety. Until the anchor is down and we are inside the harbour, we may be shipwrecked, if we are careless in our navigation. ‘Go thou thy way until the end.’ And remember, you older people, that until that end is reached you have to use all your power, and to labour as earnestly, and guard yourself as carefully, as at any period before.

And not only ‘till the end,’ but ‘go thou thy way to the end.’ That is to say, let the thought that the road has a termination be ever present with us all. Now, there is a great deal of the so-called devout contemplation of death which is anything but wholesome. People were never meant to be always looking forward to that close. Men may think of ‘the end’ in a hundred different connections. One man may say, ‘Let us eat and drink, for to-morrow we die.’ Another man may say, ‘I have only a little while to master this science, to make a name for myself, to win wealth. Let me bend all my efforts in a fierce determination-made the fiercer because of the thought of the brevity of life-to win the end.’ The mere contemplation of the shortness of our days may be an ally of immorality, of selfishness, of meanness, of earthly ambitions, or it may lay a cooling hand on fevered brows, and lessen the pulsations of hearts that throb for earth.

But whilst it is not wholesome to be always thinking of death, it is more unwholesome still never to let the contemplation of that end come into our calculations of the future, and to shape our lives in an obstinate blindness to what is the one certain fact which rises up through the whirling mists of the unknown future, like some black cliff from the clouds that wreath around it. Is it not strange that the surest thing is the thing that we forget most of all? It sometimes seems to me as if the sky rained down opiates upon people, as if all mankind were in a conspiracy of lunacy, because they, with one accord, ignore the most prominent and forget the only certain fact about their future; and in all their calculations do not’ so number their days’ as to ‘apply’ their ‘hearts unto wisdom.’ ‘Go thou thy way until the end,’ and let thy way be marked out with a constant eye towards the end.

II. Note, again, the resting-place.

‘Go thou thy way, for thou shalt rest.’ Now, I suppose, to most careful readers that clearly is intended as a gracious, and what they call a euphemistic way of speaking about death. ‘Thou shalt rest’; well, that is a thought that takes away a great deal of the grimness and the terror with which men generally invest the close. It is a thought, of course, the force of which is very different in different stages and conditions of life. To you young people, eager, perhaps ambitious, full of the consciousness of inward power, happy, and, in all human probability, with the greater portion of your lives before you in which to do what you desire, the thought of ‘rest’ comes with a very faint appeal. And yet I do not suppose that there is any one of us who has not some burden that is hard to carry, or who has not learned what weariness means.

But to us older people, who have tasted disappointments, who have known the pressure of grinding toil for a great many years, whose hearts have been gnawed by harassments and anxieties of different kinds, whose lives are apparently drawing nearer their end than the present moment is to their beginning, the thought, ‘Thou shalt rest,’ comes with a very different appeal from that which it makes to these others.

‘There remaineth a rest for the people of God,

And I have had trouble enough for one,’


says our great modern poet; and therein he echoes the deepest thoughts of most of this congregation. That rest is the cessation of toil, but the continuance of activity-the cessation of toil, and anxiety, and harassment, and care, and so the darkness is made beautiful when we think that God draws the curtain, as a careful mother does in her child’s chamber, that the light may not disturb the slumberer.

But, dear friends, that final cessation of earthly work has a double character. ‘Thou shalt rest’ was said to this man of God. But what of people whom death takes away from the only sort of work that they are fit to do? It will be no rest to long for the occupations which you never can have any more. And if you have been living for this wretched present, to be condemned to have nothing to do any more in it and with it will be torture, and not repose. Ask yourselves how you would like to be taken out of your shop, or your mill, or your study, or your laboratory, or your counting-house, and never be allowed to go into it again. Some of you know how wearisome a holiday is when you cannot get to your daily work. You will get a very long holiday after you are dead. And if the hungering after the withdrawn occupation persists, there will be very little pleasure in rest. There is only one way by which we can make that inevitable end a blessing, and turn death into the opening of the gate of our resting-place; and that is by setting our heart’s desires and our spirit’s trust on Jesus Christ, who is the ‘Lord both of the dead and of the living.’ If we do that, even that last enemy will come to us as Christ’s representative, with Christ’s own word upon his lip, ‘Come unto Me, ye that are weary and are heavy laden, and I’-because He has given Me the power-’I will give you rest.’

‘Sleep, full of rest, from head to foot;

Lie still, dry dust, secure of change.’


III. That leads me to the last thought, the home.

‘Thou shalt stand in thy lot at the end of the days.’ ‘Stand’-that is Daniel’s way of preaching, what he has been preaching in several other parts of his book, the doctrine of the resurrection. ‘Thou shalt stand in thy lot.’ That is a reference to the ancient partition of the land of Canaan amongst the tribes, where each man got his own portion, and sat under his own vine and fig-tree. And so there emerge from these symbolical words thoughts upon which, at this stage of my sermon, I can barely touch. First comes the thought that, however sweet and blessed that reposeful state may be, humanity has not attained its perfection until once again the perfected spirit is mated with, and enclosed within, its congenial servant, a perfect body. ‘Corporeity is the end of man.’ Body, soul, and spirit partake of the redemption of God.

But then, apart from that, on which I must not dwell, my text suggests one or two thoughts. God is the true inheritance. Each man has his own portion of the common possession, or, to put it into plainer words, in that perfect land each individual has precisely so much of God as he is capable of possessing. ‘Thou shalt stand in thy lot,’ and what determines the lot is how we wend our way till that other end, the end of life. ‘The end of the days’ is a period far beyond the end of the life of Daniel. And as the course that terminated in repose has been, so the possession of ‘the portion of the inheritance of the saints in light’ shall be, for which that course has made men meet. Destiny is character worked out. A man will be where he is fit for, and have what he is fit for. Time is the lackey of eternity. His life here settles how much of God a man shall be able to hold, when he stands in his lot at the ‘end of the days,’ and his allotted portion, as it stretches around him, will be but the issue and the outcome of his life here on earth.

Therefore, dear brethren, tremendous importance attaches to each fugitive moment. Therefore each act that we do is weighted with eternal consequences. If we will put our trust in Him, ‘in whom also we obtain the inheritance,’ and will travel on life’s common way in cheerful godliness, we may front all the uncertainties of the unknown future, sure of two things-that we shall rest, and that we shall stand in our lot. We shall all go where we have fitted ourselves, by God’s grace, to go; get what we have fitted ourselves to possess; and be what we have made ourselves. To the Christian man the word comes, ‘Thou shalt stand in thy lot.’ And the other word that was spoken about one sinner, will be fulfilled in all whose lives have been unfitting them for heaven: ‘Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.’ He, too, stands in his lot. Now settle which lot is yours.Daniel 12:13. But go thou thy way till the end be — The prophet had been making inquiries respecting the end of these wonders; and the angel, having given him all the information that was needful either for himself or future times, now dismisses him, with an encouraging declaration concerning the happiness which awaited him in the heavenly world. Thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of thy days — Daniel was now ninety years of age, at least, and so could not expect to live much longer: and the angel here tells him, that after his life was ended, he should rest in peace with the righteous, namely, with respect to his soul; (compare Isaiah 57:2; Revelation 14:13;) and that at the resurrection, foretold Daniel 12:2, of this chapter, he should obtain a share of that inheritance which is reserved for the faithful servants of God, and which shall be actually conferred upon them at the conclusion of the times here specified, Daniel 12:12. Observe, reader, our time and days, yea, and all time and days, will soon have an end, and we must every one of us stand in our lot at the end of the days. In the judgment of the great day we must have our allotment according to what we were, and what we did, in the body, and we must stand for ever in that lot. It was a comfort to Daniel, and it is a comfort to all the saints, that whatever their lot is in the days of time, they shall have a happy lot in the end of the days. And it ought to be the great care and concern of every one of us, to secure a happy lot at that period; and then we may well be content with our present lot, whatever it may be, welcoming the will of God, in all things and at all times. 12:5-13 One of the angels asking how long it should be to the end of these wonders, a solemn reply is made, that it would be for a time, times, and a half, the period mentioned ch. 7:25, and in the Revelation. It signifies 1260 prophetic days or years, beginning from the time when the power of the holy people should be scattered. The imposture of Mohammed, and the papal usurpation, began about the same time; and these were a twofold attack upon the church of God. But all will end well at last. All opposing rule, principality, and power, shall be put down, and holiness and love will triumph, and be in honour, to eternity. The end, this end, shall come. What an amazing prophecy is this, of so many varied events, and extending through so many successive ages, even to the general resurrection! Daniel must comfort himself with the pleasing prospect of his own happiness in death, in judgment, and to eternity. It is good for us all to think much of going away from this world. That must be our way; but it is our comfort that we shall not go till God calls us to another world, and till he has done with us in this world; till he says, Go thou thy way, thou hast done thy work, therefore now, go thy way, and leave it to others to take thy place. It was a comfort to Daniel, and is a comfort to all the saints, that whatever their lot is in the days of their lives, they shall have a happy lot in the end of the days. And it ought to be the great care and concern of every one of us to secure this. Then we may well be content with our present lot, and welcome the will of God. Believers are happy at all times; they rest in God by faith now, and a rest is reserved for them in heaven at last.But go thou thy way until the end be - See Daniel 12:4, Daniel 12:9. The meaning is, that nothing more would be communicated, and that he must wait for the disclosures of future times. When that should occur which is here called "the end," he would understand this more fully and perfectly. The language implies, also, that he would be present at the development which is here called "the end;" and that then he would comprehend clearly what was meant by these revelations. This is such language as would be used on the supposition that the reference was to far-distant times, and to the scenes of the resurrection and the final judgment, when Daniel would be present. Compare the notes at Daniel 12:2-3.

For thou shalt rest - Rest now; and perhaps the meaning is, shalt enjoy a long season of repose before the consummation shall occur. In Daniel 12:2, he had spoken of those who "sleep in the dust of the earth;" and the allusion here would seem to be the same as applied to Daniel. The period referred to was far distant. Important events were to intervene. The affairs of the world were to move on for ages before the "end"' should come. There would be scenes of revolution, commotion, and tumult - momentous changes before that consummation would be reached. But during that long interval Daniel would "rest." He would quietly and calmly "sleep in the dust of the earth" - in the grave. He would be agitated by none of these troubles - disturbed by none of these changes, for he would peacefully slumber in the hope of being awaked in the resurrection. This also is such language as would be employed by one who believed in the doctrine of the resurrection, and who meant to say that he with whom he was conversing would repose in the tomb while the affairs of the world would move on in the long period that would intervene between the time when he was then speaking and the "end" or consummation of all things - the final resurrection. I do not see that it is possible to explain the language on any other supposition than this. The word rendered "shalt rest" - תנוּח tânûach - would be well applied to the rest in the grave. So it is used in Job 3:13, "Then had I been at rest;" Job 3:17, "There the weary be at rest."

And stand in thy lot - In thy place. The language is derived from the lot or portion which falls to one - as when a lot is cast, or anything is determined by lot. Compare Judges 1:3; Isaiah 57:6; Psalm 125:3; Psalm 16:5. Gesenius (Lexicon) renders this, "And arise to thy lot in the end of days; i. e., in the Messiah's kingdom." Compare Revelation 20:6. The meaning is, that he need have no apprehension for himself as to the future. That was not now indeed disclosed to him; and the subject was left in designed obscurity. He would "rest," perhaps a long time, in the grave. But in the far-distant future he would occupy ills appropriate place; he would rise from his rest; he would appear again on the stage of action; he would have the lot and rank which properly belonged to him. What idea this would convey to the mind of Daniel it is impossible now to determine, for he gives no statement on that point; but it is clear that it is such language as would be appropriately used by one who believed in the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead, and who meant to direct the mind onward to those far-distant and glorious scenes when the dead would all arise, and when each one of the righteous would stand up in his appropriate place or lot.

At the end of the days - After the close of the periods referred to, when the consummation of all things should take place. It is impossible not to regard this as applicable to a resurrection from the dead; and there is every reason to suppose that Daniel would so understand it, for

(a) if it be interpreted as referring to the close of the persecutions of Antiochus Epiphanes, it must be so understood. This prophecy was uttered about 534 years b.c. The death of Antiochus occurred 164 b.c. The interval between the prophecy and that event was, therefore, 370 years. It is impossible to believe that it was meant by the angel that Daniel would continue to live during all that time, so that he should then "stand in his lot," not having died; or that he did continue to live during all that period, and that at the end of it he "stood in his lot," or occupied the post of distinction and honor which is referred to in this language. But if this had been the meaning, it would have implied that he would, at that time, rise from the dead.

(b) If it be referred, as Gesenius explains it, to the times of the Messiah, the same thing would follow - for that time was still more remote; and, if it be supposed that Daniel understood it as relating to those times, it must also be admitted that he believed that there would be a resurrection, and that he would then appear in his proper place.

(c) There is only one other supposition, and that directly involves the idea that the allusion is to the general resurrection, as referred to in Daniel 12:3, and that Daniel would have part in that. This is admitted by Lengerke, by Maurer, and even by Bertholdt, to be the meaning, though he applies it to the reign of the Messiah. No other interpretation, therefore, can be affixed to this than that it implies the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead, and that the mind of Daniel was directed onward to that. With this great and glorious doctrine the book appropriately closes. The hope of such a resurrection was fitted to soothe the mind of Daniel in view of all the troubles which he then experienced, and of all the darkness which rested on the future, for what we most want in the troubles and in the darkness of the present life is the assurance that, after having "rested" in the grave - in the calm sleep of the righteous - we shall "awake" in the morning of the resurrection, and shall "stand in our lot" - or in our appropriate place, as the acknowledged children of God, "at the end of days" - when time shall be no more, and when the consummation of all things shall have arrived.

In reference to the application of this prophecy, the following general remarks may be made:

I. One class of interpreters explain it literally as applicable to Antiochus Epiphanes. Of this class is Prof. Stuart, who supposes that its reference to Antiochus can be shown in the following manner: "The place which this passage occupies shows that the terminus a quo, or period from which the days designated are to be reckoned, is the same as that to which reference is made in the previous verse. This, as we have already seen, is the period when Antiochus, by his military agent Apollonius, took possession of Jerusalem, and put a stop to the temple worship there. The author of the first book of Maccabees, who is allowed by all to deserve credit as an historian, after describing the capture of Jerusalem by the agent of Antiochus (in the year 145 of the Seleucidae - 168 b.c.), and setting before the reader the widespread devastation which ensued, adds, respecting the invaders: 'They shed innocent blood around the sanctuary, and defiled the holy place; and the inhabitants of Jerusalem fled away: the sanctuary thereof was made desolate; her feasts were turned into mourning, her sabbaths into reproach, and her honor into disgrace;' 1 Macc. 1:37-39. To the period when this state of things commenced we must look, then, in order to find the date from which the 1335 days are to be reckoned. Supposing now that Apollonius captured Jerusalem in the latter part of May, 168 b.c., the 1335 days would expire about the middle of February, in the year 164 b.c. Did any event take place at this period which would naturally call forth the congratulations of the prophet, as addressed in the text before us to the Jewish people?

"History enables us to answer this question. Late in the year 165 b.c., or at least very early in the year 164 b.c., Antiochus Epiphanes, learning that there were great insurrections and disturbances in Armenia and Persia, hastened thither with a portion of his armies, while the other portion was commissioned against Palestine. He was victorious for a time; but being led by cupidity to seek for the treasures that were laid up in the temple of the Persian Diana at Elymais, he undertook to rifle them. The inhabitants of the place, however, rose en masse and drove him out of the city; after which he fled to Ecbatana. There he heard of the total discomfiture by Judas Maccabeus of his troops in Palestine, which were led on by Micanor and Timotheus. In the rage occasioned by this disappointment, he uttered the most horrid blasphemies against the God of the Jews, and threatened to make Jerusalem the burying-place of the nation. Immediately he directed his course toward Judea; and designing to pass through Babylon, he made all possible haste in his journey. In the meantime he had a fall from his chariot which injured him; and soon after, being seized with a mortal sickness in his bowels (probably the cholera), he died at Tabae, in the mountainous country, near the confines of Babylonia and Persia. Report stated, even in ancient times, that Antiochus was greatly distressed on his death-bed by the sacrilege which he had committed.

"Thus perished the most bitter and bloody enemy which ever rose up against the Jewish nation and their worship. By following the series of events, it is easy to see that his death took place some time in February of the year 164 b.c. Assuming that the commencement or terminus a quo of the 1335 days is the same as that of the 1290 days, it is plain that they terminate at the period when the death of Antiochus is said to have taken place. 'It was long before the commencement of the spring,' says Froelich, 'that Antiochus passed the Euphrates, and made his attack on Elymais: so that no more probable time can be fixed upon for his death than at the expiration of the 1335 days; i. e., some time in February of 164 b.c. No wonder that the angel pronounced those of the pious and believing Jews to be blessed who lived to see such a day of deliverance." - Hints on Prophecy, pp. 95-97.

There are, however, serious and obvious difficulties in regard to this view, and to the supposition that this is all that is intended here - objections and difficulties of so much force that most Christian interpreters have supposed that something further was intended. Among these difficulties and objections are the following:

(a) The air of mystery which is thrown over the whole matter by the angel, as if he were reluctant to make the communication; as if something more was meant than the words expressed; as if he shrank from disclosing all that he knew, or that might be said. If it referred to Antiochus alone, it is difficult to see why so much mystery was made of it, and why he was so unwilling to allude further to the subject - as if it were something that did not pertain to the matter in hand.

(b) The detached and fragmentary character of what is here said. It stands aside from the main communication. It is uttered after all that the angel had intended to reveal had been said. It is brought out at the earnest request of Daniel, and then only in hints, and in enigmatical language, and in such a manner that it would convey no distinct conception to his mind. This would seem to imply that it referred to something else than the main point that had been under consideration.

continued...

13. rest—in the grave (Job 3:17; Isa 57:2). He, like his people Israel, was to wait patiently and confidently for the blessing till God's time. He "received not the promise," but had to wait until the Christian elect saints should be brought in, at the first resurrection, that he and the older Old Testament saints "without us should not be made perfect" (Heb 11:40).

stand—implying justification unto life, as opposed to condemnation (Ps 1:5).

thy lot—image from the allotment of the earthly Canaan.

I have revealed to thee of these things what I had in commission, that thou and thy people should be prepared for the sufferings which will come upon them, and yet not without hope of a glorious deliverance. In which hope thou shalt die, and rest from fear or feeling of trouble, till the resurrection of the just to the joys of another world: which some make to be here after all enemies are destroyed, at least to begin here, and to be consummated in heaven eternally, comparing this with Revelation 19:20,21. But go thou thy way till the end be,.... Prepare for death and expect to be under the power of it, to lie in the grave, till the end of the world, until the resurrection morn:

for thou shalt rest; from all toil and labour, from all sin and sorrow; his body in the grave, his soul in the bosom of Christ: and stand in thy lot at the end of the days; signifying that he should rise again from the dead, have his part in the first resurrection, his share of the glory of the Millennium state, and his portion in the heavenly inheritance of the saints; the antitype of Canaan, which was divided by lot to the children of Israel: and, in the faith and hope of this, it became him to be contented and satisfied; believing the accomplishment of all that had been shown him, and looking for the blessedness which was promised him. Agreeable to which is the paraphrase of Jacchiades;

"but thou, O Daniel, go to the end of thy life in this world; and, after thou art dead, rest in the rest of paradise; and at the end of days thou shall stand and live in the resurrection of the dead, and shall enjoy thy good lot in the world to come''.

But go {o} thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.

(o) The angel warns the Prophet patiently to wait, until the time appointed comes, signifying that he should depart this life, and rise again with the elect, when God had sufficiently humbled and purged his Church.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
13. After indicating (Daniel 12:11-12) the duration of the persecution, the angel turns to Daniel; and the book closes with a word of consolation addressed to him personally. He is to await the ‘end’ in the grave, from which, in the resurrection spoken of in Daniel 12:2, he will arise to take his appointed place, beside the other saints.

But thou, go thou to the end] i.e. depart to await the end. (As in Daniel 12:9, there is nothing in the Heb. corresponding to ‘thy way.’)

and thou shalt rest (in the grave, Isaiah 57:2), and stand up to thy lot] to thy appointed portion or place: ‘lot’ being used in a figurative sense, as in Jdg 1:3, Psalm 125:3, and in the N.T. Acts 26:18, Colossians 1:12 (in both which passages ‘inheritance’ is properly ‘lot’ [κλῆρος]’).

at the end of the days] the extreme end of the present period,—i.e., reckoned from Daniel’s standpoint, the period ending with the fall of Antiochus,—when the resurrection of Daniel 12:2 will take place, and the age of never-ending blessedness (Daniel 12:3) will begin.Verse 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. The Septuagint Version here differs considerably from the Massoretic, "Go thy way and rest, for there are days and hours till the fulfilment of the end; and thou shalt rest and arise to thy glory at the end of days." Theodotion closely resembles the LXX. in his rendering of this verse, "But go thou and rest, for there are yet days and hours to the fulfilment of the end, and thou shalt arise in thy lot at the end of days." The Pesbitta renders, "Go, Daniel, to the end, rest and arise at thy time at the end of days." The Vulgate agrees with the Massoretic text. As to the additional clause which appears in the version of the LXX. and in Theodotion, Origen has appended the mark which indicates that these words were only found in the LXX., or, at all events, had nothing corresponding to them in the Hebrew text of his day. Go thou thy way. Daniel is dismissed in peace, without having his question answered. Before Daniel was a course, and on that course he was to go, without occupying his thoughts with this secret thing. There is no word for "way" in the Hebrew or in any of the older versions. Till the end. The versions transpose this clause with that which follows. "The end" is not naturally the end of Daniel's life, for that ought to be "thy end;" still, the next clause seems to necessitate this. Hitzig would interpret the word qaytz as "goal" (ziel); but it is not the usual meaning of the word, and is not so used elsewhere in this passage. Professor Robertson Smith's suggestion (Bevan, 207), that the word קֵצ (qaytz) is due to a mistake of a copyist, who has inserted it wrongly, is worthy of consideration. For thou shalt rest. This is rendered by Hitzig, "und magst ruhig sein" - "and you may be at rest." The fulfilment of the prophecy was fur a time long future, and Daniel need not disturb himself. Against this interpretation is the fact that the verb נוַּה (nuah), here translated "rest," never has the subjective meaning which Hitzig here attaches to it. The natural view is that of Ewald and most interpreters - "rest" in the grave. And strand in thy lot at the end of the days. In Jeremiah 13:25 "lot" is used for what is assigned by the judgment of God. "Standing in the lot" primarily suggests one taking possession of what has been assigned by Divine judgment. It is objected by Hitzig that the verb "to stand" does not mean to rise from the dead, which is true; but the connection necessitates this meaning, and as the idea of resurrection had not received theological definition, no technical word would have the exclusive claim to be used. Even now we do not always use "resurrection," and in poetry rarely do. "The end of days" must mean the end of time after the resurrection.



The giving of the kingdom to the Son of Man. - The judgment does not come to an end with the destruction of the world-power in its various embodiments. That is only its first act, which is immediately followed by the second, the erection of the kingdom of God by the Son of man. This act is introduced by the repetition of the formula, I saw in the night-visions (Daniel 7:7 and Daniel 7:2). (One) like a son of man came in the clouds of heaven. ענני עם, with the clouds, i.e., in connection with them, in or on them as the case may be, surrounded by clouds; cf. Revelation 1:7, Mark 13:26, Matthew 24:30; Matthew 26:64. He who comes is not named, but is only described according to his appearance like a son of man, i.e., resembling a man (אנשׁ בּר as אדם בן equals אנושׁ or אדם). That this was a man is not implied in these words, but only that he was like a man, and not like a beast or some other creature. Now, as the beasts signify not beasts but kingdoms, so that which appeared in the form of a man may signify something else than a human individuum. Following the example of Aben Ezra, Paulus, and Wegscheider, Hofmann (Schriftbew. ii. 1. 80, and 2, p. 582f.), Hitzig, Weisse, Volkmar, Fries (Jahrbb.f. D. Theol. iv. p. 261), Baxmann, and Herzfeld (Gesch. des V. Isr. ii. p. 381) interpret this appearance in the form of a man not of the Messiah, as the Jewish and Christian interpreters in general do, but of the people of Israel, and adduce in support of this view the fact that, in the explanation of the vision, Daniel 7:27, cf. Daniel 7:24, the kingdom, the dominion, and the power, which according to Daniel 7:14 the son of man received, was given to the people of the saints of the Most High. But Daniel 7:27 affords no valid support to this supposition, for the angel there gives forth his declaration regarding the everlasting kingdom of God, not in the form of an interpretation of Daniel's vision, as in the case of the four beasts in Daniel 7:17 and Daniel 7:23, but he only says that, after the destruction of the horn and its dominion, the kingdom and the power will be given to the people of the saints, because he had before (Daniel 7:26, cf. 22) spoken of the blasphemies of the horn against God, and of its war against the saints of the Most High. But the delivering of the kingdom to the people of God does not, according to the prophetic mode of contemplation, exclude the Messiah as its king, but much rather includes Him, inasmuch as Daniel, like the other prophets, knows nothing of a kingdom without a head, a Messianic kingdom without the King Messiah. But when Hofmann further remarks, that "somewhere it must be seen that by that appearance in the form of a man is meant not the holy congregation of Israel, but an individual, a fifth king, the Messiah," Auberlen and Kranichfeld have, with reference to this, shown that, according to Daniel 7:21, the saints appear in their multiplicity engaged in war when the person who comes in the clouds becomes visible, and thus that the difference between the saints and that person is distinctly manifest. Hence it appears that the "coming with the clouds of heaven" can only be applied to the congregation of Israel, if we agree with Hofmann in the opinion that he who appeared was not carried by the clouds of heaven down to the earth, but from the earth up to heaven, in order that he might there receive the kingdom and the dominion. But this opinion is contradicted by all that the Scriptures teach regarding this matter. In this very chapter before us there is no expression or any intimation whatever that the judgment is held in heaven. No place is named. It is only said that judgment was held over the power of the fourth beast, which came to a head in the horn speaking blasphemies, and that the beast was slain and his body burned. If he who appears as a son of man with the clouds of heaven comes before the Ancient of days executing the judgment on the earth, it is manifest that he could only come from heaven to earth. If the reverse is to be understood, then it ought to have been so expressed, since the coming with the clouds of heaven in opposition to the rising up of the beasts out of the sea very distinctly indicates a coming down from heaven. The clouds are the veil or the "chariot" on which God comes from heaven to execute judgment against His enemies; cf. Psalm 18:10., Psalm 97:2-4; Psalm 104:3, Isaiah 19:1; Nahum 1:3. This passage forms the foundation for the declaration of Christ regarding His future coming, which is described after Daniel 7:13 as a coming of the Son of man with, in, on the clouds of heaven; Matthew 24:30; Matthew 26:64; Mark 18:26; Revelation 1:7; Revelation 14:14. Against this, Hofmann, in behalf of his explanation, can only adduce 1 Thessalonians 4:17, in total disregard of the preceding context, Daniel 7:16.

(Note: The force of these considerations is also recognised by Hitzig. Since the people of the saints cannot come from heaven, he resorts to the expedient that the Son of man is a "figure for the concrete whole, the kingdom, the saints - this kingdom comes down from heaven." The difficulties of such an idea are very obvious. Fries appears to be of opinion, with Hofmann, that there is an ascension to heaven of the people of the saints; for to him "clear evidence" that the "Son of man" is the people of Israel lies especially in the words, "and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before Him," which necessitates the adoption of the opposite terminus a quo from Matthew 24:30; Mark 14:62; Revelation 1:7; and hence makes the direct parallelism of Daniel 7:13 with the passages named impossible (?).)

With all other interpreters, we must accordingly firmly maintain that he who appears with the clouds of heaven comes from heaven to earth and is a personal existence, and is brought before God, who judges the world, that he may receive dominion, majesty, and a kingdom. But in the words "as a man" it is not meant that he was only a man. He that comes with the clouds of heaven may, as Kranichfeld rightly observes, "be regarded, according to current representations, as the God of Israel coming on the clouds, while yet he who appears takes the outward from of a man." The comparison (כ, as a man) proves accordingly much more, that this heavenly or divine being was in human form. This "Son of man" came near to the Ancient of days, as God appears in the vision of the judgment, Daniel 7:9, and was placed before Him. The subject to הקרבוּהי is undefined; Kran. thinks that it is the clouds just mentioned, others think it is the ministering angels. Analogous passages may be adduced in support of both views: for the first, the νεφέλη ὑπέλαβεν αὐτόν in Acts 1:9; but the parallel passages with intransitive verbs speak more in favour of the impersonal translation, "they brought him" equals he was brought. The words, "dominion, and glory, and a kingdom were given to him," remind us of the expression used of Nebuchadnezzar, Daniel 2:37., but they are elevated by the description following to the conception of the everlasting dominion of God. God gave to Nebuchadnezzar, the founder and first bearer of the world-power, a kingdom, and might, and majesty, and dominion over all the inhabitants of the earth, men, and beasts, and birds, that he might govern all nations, and tribes, and tongues (Daniel 5:18-19), but not indeed in such a manner as that all nations and tribes should render him religious homage, nor was his dominion one of everlasting duration. These two things belong only to the kingdom of God. פּלח is used in biblical Chaldee only of the service and homage due to God; cf. Daniel 7:27; Daniel 3:12-13, Daniel 3:17., Ezra 7:19, Ezra 7:24. Thus it indicates here also the religious service, the reverence which belong to God, though in the Targg. it corresponds with the Heb. עבד in all its meanings, colere Deum, terram, laborare. Regarding the expression "nations, tribes, and tongues," see under Daniel 7:3, Daniel 7:4. The eternity of the duration of the dominion is in this book the constant predicate of the kingdom of God and His Anointed, the Messiah; cf. Daniel 3:33; Daniel 4:31; Daniel 2:44. For further remarks regarding the Son of man, see at the close of this chapter.

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