Daniel 12:7
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.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(7) Held up his right hand . . .—In general, a person when swearing lifted up the right hand only (see Genesis 14:22; Deuteronomy 32:40). Both hands are represented here as being raised up, so as to give greater importance to the words. (See Note on Revelation 10:5, and comp. Daniel 4:34.)

A time, times . . .—See Note on Daniel 7:25; and observe that any reference to the period of the persecution under Antiochus is impossible, on account of the difference between the measures of time. (See Daniel 7:14.)

To scatter.—The ancient versions (not the LXX., however) appear to have understood this to mean the dispersion of Israel (see Deuteronomy 7:6), and seem to have connected the “end,” of which Daniel speaks, with the cessation of the dispersion of Israel, or, in other words, to have regarded it as a prediction of the re-gathering of Israel, which would immediately precede the coming of Elias. (See the remarks of Theodoret on the passage.) But by the “holy people” are meant, more probably, those who shall suffer in the last days (comp. Daniel 7:25, “the saints”), and the word “scatter” means to break in pieces, as Psalm 2:9, &c. So that the words imply that the end will not come till “the shattering of the power of the saints” has been accomplished, or till persecution appears to have stamped out all that remains of godliness. This makes the prophecy accord with Daniel 7:25 and the parallel passages in the New Testament.

Daniel 12:7. And he held up his right hand and his left unto heaven — It was the general custom, in swearing, to lift up one hand to heaven: see Genesis 14:22; Deuteronomy 32:40; but here Christ is represented as holding up both his hands, as a greater confirmation of the truth and importance of what he was about to say; and sware by him that liveth for ever — By the self-existent and everlasting God. Thus the mighty angel, whom St. John saw, Revelation 10:5-6, is brought in, with a plain reference to this vision here, standing with his right foot on the sea and his left foot on the earth, and, with his hand lifted up to heaven, swearing that there should be no longer any delay of the execution of the divine counsels. That it should be for a time, times, and a half, or, the dividing of time, as it is expressed in Chaldee, Daniel 7:25, where see the note, which contains, understood literally, three years and a half, during which time the public sacrifices and worship were discontinued through the persecution of Antiochus, the type of antichrist. But this line of time is expressly applied to the antichristian persecution, Revelation 12:14, and is further explained in that chapter, Daniel 12:6, by one thousand two hundred and sixty days, which is three years and a half, reckoning three hundred and sixty days to a year: see note on Daniel 9:24. And if we suppose each day to signify a year, which is the prophetical sense of the word day, this period of time denotes one thousand two hundred and sixty years: see note on Daniel 8:14. And when he shall have accomplished to disperse the power of the holy people — When the dispersions of the Jews shall be ended, then the most remarkable events contained in this prophecy shall be fulfilled. The restoration of the Jewish nation is foretold by the prophets, as one of those signal events to be brought to pass in the latter days, or times, of the world. Mr. Mede makes this parallel with those words of Christ, Luke 21:24; Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled; that is, till the times of the fourth monarchy and the reign of antichrist be expired. Many commentators understand this last clause, which speaks of accomplishing to scatter the power of the holy people, not of the termination of the time of their dispersions, but of the beginning of it; and suppose that it will be one thousand two hundred and sixty years, from the beginning to the end of that time. But then, by the power of the holy people, they do not understand the Jews, but the Christians. They do not, therefore, calculate this period from the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans, and the subsequent dispersion of the Jews; but from the time when the anti- christian usurpers began to scatter the power of true Christians, by false doctrines, persecutions, massacres, and religious wars; and they extend it to the period when these powers shall be subverted.

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.And I heard the man ... - That is, he replied to the question at once, and in a most solemn manner, as if he were communicating a great and momentous truth respecting the future.

When he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven - Toward heaven; as if appealing to heaven for the sincerity and truth of what he was about to utter. The act of swearing or taking an oath was often accompanied with the lifting up of the hand to heaven, usually the right hand (compare Genesis 14:22; Exodus 6:8; Deuteronomy 32:40; Ezekiel 20:5; Revelation 10:5); but here the angel stretched both hands toward heaven, as if he were about to make the affirmation in the most solemn manner conceivable.

And sware by him that liveth for ever - By the eternal God. That is, he appealed to him: he made the solemn asseveration in his presence; he called him to witness to the truth of what he said. The occasion; the manner; the posture of the angel; the appeal to the Eternal One - all give great sublimity to this transaction, and all imply that the answer was to be one of great consequence in regard to future times.

That it shall be for a time, times, and an half - Margin, or, a part. The word חצי chătsı̂y means, properly, half, the half part, that which is divided (חצץ châtsats) - to divide), s. c., in the middle. The word "times" means two times, for it is dual in its form, and the expression means three times, or periods, and a half. See the meaning of the language fully considered and explained in the notes at Daniel 7:24-28. (See Editor's Essay on Year-day Principle, prefixed to the vol. on Revelation.)

And when he shall have accomplished - When he shall have finished his purpose in the matter; when he shall have done all that he could do.

To scatter the power - All that constituted the power - their armies, means of defense, etc. The word rendered "power" (יד yâd) means, properly, hand, but it is sometimes used to denote a part of a thing - as a portion that we take up by the hand - a handful; that is, a part of a thing taken up at once in dividing - Gesenius, Lexicon See Jeremiah 6:3; 2 Kings 11:7; Genesis 47:24. In accordance with this, Gesenius, Lengerke, and De Wette suppose that the reference here is to the scattering of a portion or part of the Hebrew people in other lands, and to the hope that they would be restored again to their own country; and that the meaning of the angel is, that when these dispersions were ended, all this would have been accomplished. The word has also the sense of power, might, strength (Gesenius, Lexicon), the hand being regarded as the seat of strength, Isaiah 28:2; Job 27:11; Psalm 76:5 (6).

Thus employed, it may denote whatever constituted their strength; and then the idea in the passage before us is, that all this would be scattered. When that should have been done; when that dispersion should have been ended; when these scattered forces and people should have been again restored, then all this that was predicted would be accomplished, and these troubles cease. This would be in the period designated by the "time, and times, and an half." If it refers to Antiochus, it means that the scattered forces and people of the Hebrews would be rallied under the Maccabees, and that on their return victory would crown their efforts, and the land would be again at peace. If it has a higher and an ultimate signification, it would seem to imply that when the scattered Hebrew people should be gathered into the Christian church - when their dispersions and their wanderings should come to an end by their returning to the Messiah, and, under him, to the true God, then the series of predictions will have received their complete fulfillment - for then religion will triumph in the world, and the kingdom of God be set up over all the nations, agreeably to Romans 11:15-25. In reference, then, to the meaning of the passage as used by the angel here, the following remarks may be made:

(1) It had an applicability to the times of Antiochus, and to the duration of the calamities that would come upon the Hebrew people under his reign. If there had been nothing further intended than this, the mere language employed would have found a literal fulfillment in these events, and there can be no reasonable doubt that the primary reference of the angel was to them. See this point fully considered and illustrated in the notes at Daniel 7:24-28.

(2) Yet there are circumstances which lead us to suppose that, at the same time, and by the laws of prophetic suggestion (see Introduction to Isaiah, Section 7.), more important events were also referred to, and were designed to be connected with this statement. Those circumstances are

(a) the manner in which the angel introduces the subject - by a solemn appeal, with out-stretched arms, to heaven. This would look as if he regarded the answer as of momentous importance, and as if he were contemplating vast movements in the future.

(b) The fact that the language here had a settled meaning - referring, as used, elsewhere, to future events deeply affecting the welfare of the world. The language is so couched, indeed, that it would express the fact in regard to the duration of the troubles under Antiochus; but it was also of such a nature that in its higher signification it would describe the duration of more momentous transactions, and would designate a period when the true religion would begin its universal reign; when the evils of a vast Anti-christian power would come to an end, and when the kingdom of the saints would be set up in the world. See the notes at Daniel 7:24-28.

(3) The full meaning of the language would then seem to be, that the angel designed to include all in the future to which those words, as intended by the Divine Spirit, would be applicable. The period designated by the phrase, "a time, and times, and an half," was most momentous. In that time the troubles introduced by Antiochus would end, and a state of peace and prosperity would succeed; and in that time, also, far greater troubles and woes - those connected with a most fearful apostasy from the true religion, and the setting up of a kingdom of oppression and wrong over the people of God, of which the oppressions and wrongs under Antiochus would be but an emblem, would also come to an end, and there would be a state of peace - a reign of righteousness - a prevalence of religion - and a far-diffused happiness in the world, at which the joy at the dedication of the temple, and the triumphs over Antiochus, would be but a symbol. The ultimate reference, therefore, I suppose, is to the downfall of that great Anti-christian power, the Papacy, and the spread and triumphs of the true religion subsequent to that, and consequent on that in the world. These were events that justified the solemn asseveration of the angel, and that made it proper for him, in referring to them, to stretch out both his hands in this sublime manner to heaven.

7. held up … right … and … left hand—Usually the right hand was held up in affirmation as an appeal to heaven to attest the truth (De 32:40; Re 10:5, 6). Here both hands are lifted up for the fuller confirmation.

time, times, and a half—(See on [1111]Da 7:25). Newton, referring this prophecy to the Eastern apostasy, Mohammedanism, remarks that the same period of three and a half years, or 1260 prophetic days, is assigned to it as the Western apostasy of the little horn (Da 7:25); and so, says Prideaux, Mohammed began to forge his imposture, retiring to his cave, A.D. 606, the very year that Phocas made the grant to the bishop of Rome, whence he assumed the title, The Universal Pastor; Antichrist thus setting both his feet on Christendom together, the one in the East, and the other in the West. Three and a half is the time of the world power, in which the earthly kingdoms rule over the heavenly [Auberlen]. "Three and a half" represents the idea of spiritual trial; (besides this certain symbolical meaning, there is doubtless an accurate chronological meaning, which is as yet to us uncertain): it is half of "seven," the complete number, so a semi-perfect state, one of probation. The holy city is trodden by the Gentiles forty-two months (Re 11:2), so the exercise of the power of the beast (Re 13:5). The two witnesses preach in sackcloth 1260 days, and remained unburied three days and a half: so the woman in the wilderness: also the same for a "time, times, and a half" (Re 11:3, 9, 11; 12:6, 14). Forty-two connects the Church with Israel, whose haltings in the wilderness were forty-two (Nu 33:1-50). The famine and drought on Israel in Elijah's days were for "three years and six months" (Lu 4:25; Jas 5:17); there same period as Antiochus' persecution: so the ministry of the Man of Sorrows, which ceased in the midst of a week (Da 9:27) [Wordsworth, Apocalypse].

scatter … holy people—"accomplished" here answers to "the consummation" (Da 9:27), namely, the "pouring out" of the last dregs of the curse on the "desolated holy people." Israel's lowest humiliation (the utter "scattering of her power") is the precursor of her exaltation, as it leads her to seek her God and Messiah (Mt 23:39).

He held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven: here he calls God to witness the truth of this thing: many reasons are given by sundry expositors of it why he held up both hands to heaven.

1. For the more sure and solemn confirmation of it.

2. To denote the unchangeableness of God’s decrees, both for good to the church, and for evil to her enemies.

By him that liveth for ever; by God the Father, and by the Deity, which was himself, that liveth for ever, to show the eternal God only knew that decreed it, and would bring it to pass; that he only is master of the times, Acts 1:7.

It shall be for a time, times, and an half; it shall be for a long time, and yet a definite time. Some will have all this to be and end in Antiochus’s time, but we have proved before that this is a great mistake, and the text and this chapter disprove that conceit.

When he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished; which reacheth to the calling of the Jews upon the destruction of antichrist, for till he be down the church will suffer and will not be up, which will fall out upon the pouring out the sixth vial and after, Revelation 16:12, &c., and the seventh vial, then all is finished, Revelation 16:17: see also 2 Thessalonians 2 3. The judgment of Christ will not come till the man of sin come and fall.

And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river,.... Christ, as he appeared in a human form, and as the High Priest our profession, and as the Mediator that has power over all flesh; so he pronounced articulate sounds with a human voice, and so loud, clear, and distinct, that Daniel could hear every word he said, and for whose sake it was said:

when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven; the lifting up of the right hand is a gesture used in swearing, and the lifting up of both hands is either for the greater solemnity of the action, or with respect to the two angels that stood one on one side of him, and the other on the other, that both might be eyewitnesses of this solemn affair; though lifting up both hands is often a prayer gesture, and there may be a mixture of both in this action, of both praying and swearing; Christ, as the High Priest, intercedes for his church and people, that their faith fail not till the end of their troubles comes:

and sware by him that liveth for ever; by the living God, the immortal One, who only hath immortality. Maimonides (n) interprets it, "by the Life of the world"; that is, by God, who is the Life of the world, that gives life and being to all creatures; all live, and move, and have their being in him, and so is greater than all, and by whom an oath is only to be taken. Christ, as man, swears by his divine Father, who, as such, was greater than he; though, if we understand it of God, Father, Son, and Spirit, the one, only, true, and living God, there is no impropriety in Christ's swearing by himself the living God, which is a character he sometimes bears; see Hebrews 3:12, what he here swears to is,

that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; that it would be so long to the end of these wonderful things; or that the troubles of the church would last so long, and, at the end of that date here fixed, a glorious scene would open, and amazing things appear, to the great joy and comfort of the saints. "Time" signifies a prophetic year, or 360 years; and "times" two prophetic years, or 720 years; and half a time half a prophetic year, or 180 years, in all 1260 years; which is the exact date and duration of the reign of antichrist, of the church's being in the wilderness, and of the witnesses prophesying in sackcloth, and of the treading under foot the holy city, expressed both by 1260 days, and by forty two months, which are the same; see Revelation 11:2,

and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people: that is, either, "when he (God) shall have finished the scattering the power of the holy people", the Jews; when the dispersion of them, who were formerly a holy people to the Lord, and shall be so again, will be over; and they shall be gathered out of all nations where they have been dispersed, and, being converted, shall return to their own land: or, "when he" (antichrist) "shall have done scattering", the church and people of God in general; when his wars with the saints, and victories over them, will be ended; and particularly when the slaying of the witnesses will be over, at which time there will be a great scattering of the saints; they will be as sheep without a shepherd, their pastors being smitten, slain, or removed into corners; all which things will be fulfilled about the end of the date before mentioned:

and then all these things shall be finished; or, as the same glorious Person explains it, "time will be no longer, and the mystery of God will be finished", Revelation 10:6, the time of antichrist's reign, and of the troubles of the church, and the witnesses' prophesying in sackcloth, will be protracted no longer than the time, and times, and half a time, or the 1260 days, or forty months, that is, 1260 years; then all the afflictions of the church will be at an end, and glorious times will succeed, as before spoken of; the spiritual reign of Christ, the first resurrection, and the Millennium, in their order.

(n) Moreh Nevochim, par. 1. c. 72. p. 146. So R. Joseph Albo, Sepher Ikkarim, l. 1. c. 69. "per vitam aeternitatis", so some in Gejerus.

And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his {h} right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a {i} time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished {k} to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.

(h) Which was as it were a double oath, and did the more confirm the thing.

(i) Meaning, a long time, a longer time, and at length a short time: signifying that their troubles would have an end.

(k) When the Church will be scattered and diminished in such a way as it will seem to have no power.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
7. The answer to the inquiry, given with solemn emphasis, and overheard by Daniel.

upon] above, as Daniel 12:6.

and he lifted up, &c.] The lifting up of the (right) hand implied an appeal to heaven, and is frequently mentioned as a gesture accompanying an oath: Genesis 14:22; and (with another Heb. word for lift up) Exodus 6:8, Deuteronomy 32:40, Ezekiel 20:5 al. Of an angel, as here, Revelation 10:5.

and his left hand] both hands, as the more complete guarantee of the truth of what is about to be affirmed.

by him that liveth for ever] cf. Revelation 10:6. The usual form of oath in the O.T. is ‘(As) Jehovah liveth’ (e.g. Jdg 8:19), or (in God’s mouth) ‘(As) I live,’—once (Deuteronomy 32:40) ‘(As) I live for ever.’ The formula here used seems to be based upon the last-cited passage: comp. also ‘him that liveth for ever’ in Daniel 4:34.

for a time, times, and a half] i.e. 3½ years, to be reckoned, probably, as was explained on Daniel 7:25 (where the same expression occurs), from the mission of Apollonius in the middle of b.c. 168 to the re-dedication of the Temple in Dec. 165.

and as they finish shattering (Psalm 2:9, Jeremiah 51:20-23 [A.V. ‘dash or break in pieces’]) the power of the holy people] alluding to the persecution of Antiochus.

‘Power’ is lit. hand, figurative of power to act, strength: cf. Deuteronomy 32:36, ‘for he saw that power (lit. hand) was gone’; Isaiah 37:27, ‘their inhabitants were of small power’ (lit. short of hand), &c. To shatter the hand is an obvious figure for reducing to helplessness.

all these things shall be finished] The end of what has been foretold (Isaiah 37:31-36) will coincide with the end of the persecution.

The Heb. of the last clause but one is however unusual: and the definition given of the end of the persecution seems almost tautologous. Hence Bevan and Marti, transposing two words, and changing the punctuation, read, ‘and as the power of the shatterer of the holy people cometh to an end [or, ‘as the hand (cf. Daniel 7:25) … faileth (Psalm 71:9)’], all these things shall be finished,’ i.e. Antiochus is to be the last oppressor of all, when his power has ceased, the sufferings of the holy people will be ended for ever.

Verse 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. The Septuagint essentially agrees with this. It omits "man" in the first clause; has "water" instead of "waters;" adds "God" as explanatory of "him that liveth for ever;" it renders "scatter the power" by "loose the hands." Theodotion, while agreeing with the Massoretic text as to the first portion of the verse, differs very much in the end. He renders, "when the scattering is finished, they shall know these things." There is, as will be seen, no reference to the "holy people." His manuscript must have omitted "holy," for the rest may be explained by a false division into words, יד־עם being read ידעו The Massoretic reading is to be preferred. The Peshitta and Vulgate do not call for remark. When he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven. The lifting up the hand, in sign of making a solemn asseveration, is used of God himself (Deuteronomy 32:40), of Abraham (Genesis 14:22), of the angel in the passage in Revelation founded on this (Revelation 10:5). Here the fact that both right hand and left hand are lifted up to heaven gives greater solemnity to the act. And sware by him that liveth for ever. This title is ascribed to God in Daniel 4:34 (31); also in Deuteronomy 32:40; the idea is involved in the name Jehovah (Yahveh). The relationship between the oath and the ascription to God, on whose faithfulness its fulfilment depended, is obvious, The fact that the "man clothed in linen" thus "swears" implies that in some way he is the source of the determination of the period. This notion is involved in the whole spiritual scenery of the Book of Daniel; the angels of the nations are the agents under God for carrying out the decrees of providence. That it shall be for a time, times, and an half. This is a space of time repeatedly used in the Biblical apocalypses (Daniel 7:25; Revelation 12:14). In Revelation 11:3, the same period seems to be represented by twelve hundred and sixty days. In the present case twelve hundred and ninety days seem to be regarded as equivalent to the "time, times, and an half (ver. 11). The divergency of interpretation comes to its height here. A great number of interpreters - not merely those of the critical school - maintain that "time" here is a literal year, and the days of the succeeding verses literal days, and that the period in question is that between the desecration of the temple by Antiochus's orders, and the setting up "the abomination of desolation" (1 Macc. 1:54), till the Jews were able to sacrifice once more in the re-consecrated temple (1 Macc. 4:52). This period, however, is only ten days over the three years from the 15th Casleu, 145 of the era of the Seleucids, to the 25th Casleu, 148. Or, if we take the date from the time that sacrifices to Jupiter began, till the re-establishment of the worship of Jehovah, it is then exactly three years from the 25th Casleu to the 25th Casleu. This period is not sufficient. Professor Moses Stuart gets over the difficulty by reckoning back from the cleansing of the temple to what he consider, the probable date of Antiochus's entrance into Jerusalem on his retreat from Egypt. This, however, is arbitrary, as the eleventh verse makes the terminus a quo the setting up of the "abomination of desolation," which occurred in 145, Seleucid era. Professor Bevan would reckon to the death of Antiochus. Of this event we only know it happened in 149, Seleucid era (1 Macc. 6:16). If the year began, as the Maceabaean reckoning seems to have been, with the month Nisan, it might be that approximately three years and a half was the time from the desecration of the temple to the death of Anti-ochua But the death of Antiochus produced but little change on the condition of the Jews. In the following year Lysias inflicted a defeat on Judas and besieged Jerusalem, and captured a portion of the city. To some extent we have anticipated our remarks on this text when considering Daniel 7:25. There are, however, peculiarities due to the fact that Aramaic, not Hebrew, is the language used in that passage. מועֵד (mo'ed), here rendered "time." is translated "congregation" most generally in the Peutatcuch. Sometimes it is "feast," and sometimes it is "season;" but if the word here means a definite period of time, it is the only case in which it does so, and it is a word that appears several hundreds of times in the Scriptures. We admit that the enumeration of days which follows renders the assertion that mo'ed means here a "year," to some extent plausible, yet only plausible. But the next question arises - Even though we should grant that it means a year, are we to understand a literal year? We saw that the "weeks" of ch. 9. are not to be taken literally, but as weeks of years, in which each day stands for a year; the contention of the traditional interpreters has then a justification from analogy in taking a mo'ed, if a "year," to be one of three hundred and sixty or three hundred and sixty-five years. Not only is the extent of time indicated here extremely doubtful, but the terminus a qao is also. Although the writer of 1 Maccabees fixes the setting up the abomination of desolation, that is only his interpretation. Our Lord, on the other hand, refers it to the Roman conquest of Jerusalem, which was a vastly more thorough destruction than that inflicted by Antiochus. The meaning of this period is not fixed yet. When he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people. Professor Bevan would change the reading here, as from the order of the Greek words in the Septuagint he deduces that the order in the text before the translator was different from that in the Massoretic text. He would render, "When the power of the shatterer of the holy people shall come to an end." Behrmann sees grammatical difficulties, but these are not cogent; but the argument for this change is weak. Yet we prefer, though with difficulty, Professor Bevan's reading. It makes the connection much simpler to take this solution, as the end of all things is not the scattering of the holy people, but their building up. If we had any authority from the versions we should be inclined to read מִכַּלות instead of וּכְכַלּות, and insert עַד before תִּכְלֶינָה, and thus would wish to render, "From the breaking of the power of the scatterer of the holy people till all these things are ended." This gives beth termini, but none of the versions gives any hint of such a reading. All these things shall be finished. As the resurrection is mentioned in the second verse, we might at once assume that this refers to the end of time; but Matthew 24:34, compared with 30, renders this conclusion doubtful. Daniel 12:7Besides these two now first seen by Daniel, he who was "clothed in linen" is named as standing above the waters of the river; but when we take into view the whole scene, he is by no means to be regarded as now for the first time coming into view. The use of the article (לאישׁ), and the clothing that characterized him, point him out as the person spoken of in Daniel 10:5. Hence our view developed in p. 768 is confirmed, viz., that previously the man clothed in linen was visible to Daniel alone, and announced to him the future. He also in the sequel alone speaks with Daniel. One of the other two makes inquiry regarding the end of the wonderful things, so as to give occasion to him (as in Daniel 8:13 and Daniel 8:14) to furnish an answer. With this the question presses itself upon us, For what purpose do the two angels appear, since only one of them speaks - the other neither does anything nor speaks? Leaving out of view the opinion of Jerome, Grotius, Studlin, and Ewald, that the two angels were the guardian spirits of Persia and Greece, and other conceits, such e.g., as that they represent the law and the prophets (after a gloss in the Cod. Chis.), which Geier has rejected as figmenta hominum textus auctoritate destituta, we confine ourselves to a consideration of the views of Hitzig and Kliefoth.

Hitzig thinks that the two angels appear as witnesses of the oath, and that for that reason there are two; cf. Deuteronomy 19:15 with Deuteronomy 31:28. But these passage do not prove that for the ratification of an oath witnesses are necessary. The testimony of two or three witnesses was necessary only for the attestation of an accusation laid before a judge. Add to this also that in Daniel 8:13. two angels appear along with him whose voice came from the Ulai (Daniel 8:16), without any oath being there given. It is true that there the two angels speak, but only the utterance of one of them is communicated. Hence the conjecture is natural, that here also both of the angels spake, the one calling to the other the question that was addressed to the Angel of the Lord hovering over the water, as Theodot. and Ephrem Syrus appear to have thought, and as Klief. regards as probable. In any case the appearance of the angels on the two banks of the river stands in actual connection with the hovering of the man clothed in linen above the waters of this river, in which the circumstance merits consideration that the river, according to Daniel 10:4 the Tigris, is here called יאר, as besides the Nile only is called in the O.T. The hovering above the stream can represent only the power or dominion over it. But Kliefoth is inclined to regard the river as an emblem of time flowing on to eternity; but there is no support in Scripture for such a representation. Besides, by this the appellation יאר is not taken into consideration, by which, without doubt, the river over which the Angel of the Lord hovers is designated as a Nile; i.e., it is indicated that as the Angel of the Lord once smote the waters of the Nile to ransom his people out of Egypt, so in the future shall he calm and suppress the waves of the river which in Daniel's time represented the might of the world-kingdom.

(Note: C. B. Michaelis has similarly interpreted the standing (or hovering) over the waters of the river as symbolum potestatis atque dominii supremi, quo non solum terram continentem et aridam, sed etiam aquas pedibus quasi suis subjectas habet, et ea quae aquarum instar tumultuantur, videlicet gentes, adversus ecclesiam Dei insurgentes atque frementes, compescere et coercere potest. Only he has not in this regard to the name יאר.)

The river Hiddekel (Tigris) was thus a figure of the Persian world-power, through whose territory it flowed (cf. for this prophetic type, Isaiah 8:6-7; Psalm 124:3-4), and the designation of the river as יאר, Nile, contains an allusion to the deliverance of Israel from the power of Egypt, which in its essence shall be repeated in the future. Two other angels stand as servants by the side of the Angel of the Lord, the ruler over the Hiddekel, prepared to execute his will. Thus interpreted, all the features of the vision gain an interpretation corresponding with the contents of the prophecy.

But the significance of the whole scene, which presents itself to the prophet after he received the announcement, at the same time shows that the Daniel 12:5-12 form no mere supplementary communication, which is given to Daniel before he is wholly dismissed for his prophetical office, regarding the question that lay upon his heart as to the duration of the severe tribulation that was announced, but that this disclosure constitutes an integral part of the foregoing revelation, and is placed at the end of the angel's message only because a change of scene was necessary for the giving prominence to the import of this disclosure.

Thus, to give the prophet the firm certainty that the oppression of his people spoken of, on the part of the ungodly world-rulers, when it has gained its end, viz., The purification of the people, shall bring about, along with the destruction of the enemy of the last time, the salvation of those who are truly the people of God in their advancement to eternal life in glory, the Angel of the Lord standing above the waters of the river presents himself to view as the guide and ruler of the affairs of the nations, and announces with a solemn oath the duration and the end of the time of tribulation. This announcement is introduced by the question of the angel standing by the river: "Till when the end, i.e., how long continues the end, of these wonderful things?" not: "When shall the end of these things be?" (Kran.) הפּלאות are, according to the context, the extraordinary things which the prophecy had declared, particularly the unheard-of oppressions described in Daniel 11:30.; cf. with פּלאות the synonym נפּלאות, Daniel 11:36 and Daniel 8:24. But the question is not: "How long shall all these פּלאות themselves continue?" but: "How long shall הפּלאות קץ, the end of these wonderful things, continue?" The end of these things is the time of the end prophesied of from Daniel 11:40 to Daniel 12:3, with all that shall happen in it. To this the man clothed with linen answers with a solemn oath for the confirmation of his statement. The lifting up of his hands to heaven indicates the solemnity of the oath. Commonly he who swears lifts up only one hand; cf. Deuteronomy 32:40; Ezekiel 20:5, and the remark under Exodus 6:8; but here with greater solemnity both hands are lifted up, and he swears העולם בּחי, by Him that liveth for ever. This predicate of God, which we have already heard from the mouth of Nebuchadnezzar, Daniel 4:31, here points back to Deuteronomy 32:40, where God swears, "I lift up my hand to heaven, and say, I live for ever," and is quoted from this verse before us in Revelation 10:6, and there further expanded. This solemn form of swearing shows that the question and answer must refer not to the duration of the period of the persecution under Antiochus, but to that under the last enemy, the Antichrist. The definition of time given in the answer leads us also to this conclusion: a time, two times, and half a time; which accurately agrees with the period of time named in Daniel 7:25 as that of the duration of the actions of the enemy of God who would arise out of the fourth world-kingdom. The כּי serves, as ὅτι frequently, only for the introducing of the statement or the answer. ל before מועד does not signify till ( equals עד, Daniel 7:25), but to or upon, at. In both of the clauses of the answer, "space of time and point of time, duration and final end, are connected, and this relation is indicated by an interchange of the prepos. ל and כ" (Hitzig). In וגו למועד (for a time, etc.) is given the space of time on or over which the פּלאות קץ (the end of these wonders) stretches itself, and in the following clause, וגו וּככלּות (and when he shall have accomplished, etc.), the point of time in which the wonderful things reach their end. Thus the two expressions of the oath are related to one another.

In the second clause יד נפּץ are differently expounded. Ancient and very wide-spread is the exposition of נפּץ by to scatter. Theodotion has translated the words thus: ἐν τῷ συντελεσθῆναι διασκορπισμόν; and Jerome (Vulg.): cum completa fuerit dispersio manus populi sancti. Hvernick, v. Lengerke, Gesenius, de Wette, Hitzig: when at the end of the dispersion of a portion of the holy people, which Hv., v. Leng., and others understand of the dispersion of Israel into the different countries of the world, which dispersion shall be brought to an end, according to the prophetic view, at the time of the Messianic final victory; Joel 3:5. (Daniel 2:32.); Amos 9:11. Hitzig, however, refers this to the circumstance that Simon and Judas Maccabaeus brought back their people to Judea who were living scattered among the heathen in Galilee and Gilead (1 Macc. 5:23, 45, 53, 54). But against such an interpretation of the word נפּץ, Hofmann (Weiss. u. Erf. i. p. 314) has with justice replied, that the reference to the reunion of Israel, which is nowhere else presented in Daniel, would enter very unexpectedly into this connection, besides that נפּץ does not agree with its object יד, though we should translate this by "might," or altogether improperly by "part." יד has not the meaning "part," which is attributed to it only on the ground of an incorrect interpretation of certain passages. נפּץ signifies to beat to pieces, to shatter; cf. Psalm 2:9; Psalm 137:9, and in the Pu. Isaiah 27:9. This is the primary meaning of the word, from which is attempted to be derived the meaning, to burst asunder, to scatter. This primary meaning of the word, however, Hengstenberg, Maurer, Auberlen, Kranichfeld, Kliefoth, and Ewald have rightly maintained in this place. Only we may not, with them, translate כּלּות by: to have an end, for then the answer would be tautological, since the breaking to pieces of the might of the people is identical with their scattering, but it has the meaning to make perfect, to accomplish, so that nothing more remains to be done. יד, hand, is the emblem of active power; the shattering of the hand is thus the complete destruction of power to work, the placing in a helpless and powerless condition, such as Moses has described in the words יד אזלת כּי (for the hand is gone), Deuteronomy 32:36, and announced that when this state of things shall arise, then "the Lord shall judge His people, and repent Himself for His servants." With this harmonizes the conclusion of the oath: then all these things shall be finished, or shall complete themselves. כּל־אלּה (all these things) are the פּלאות, Daniel 12:6. To these "wonderful things" belong not merely the crushing of the holy people in the tribulation such as never was before, but also their deliverance by the coming of the angel-prince Michael, the resurrection of the dead, and the eternal separation of the righteous from the wicked (Daniel 12:1-3). This last designation of the period of time goes thus, beyond a doubt, to the end of all things, or to the consummation of the kingdom of God by the resurrection of the dead and the final judgment. With this also agrees with expression קדשׁ עם, which is not to be limited to the converted Jews. The circumstance that in Daniel's time the Israel according to the flesh constituted the "holy people," does not necessitate our understanding this people when the people of God are spoken of in the time of the end, since then the faithful from among all nations shall be the holy people of God.

But by the majority of modern interpreters the designation of time, three and a half times, is referred to the duration of the oppression of the Jews under Antiochus Epiphanes; whence Bleek, v. Lengerke, Maurer, Hitzig, Ewald, and others conclude that the Maccabean pseudo-Daniel placed together as synchronous the death of Antiochus and the beginning of the Messianic salvation. Hvernick finds in the answer two different designations of time, but has said nothing as to the relation they bear to each other; Hofmann (Weiss. u. Erf. i. p. 314) finds an obscurity in this, that the end of all things is simply placed in connection with the end of the oppressor Antiochus (see under Daniel 12:1). But, thus Kliefoth rightly asks, on the contrary, "How is it only possible that the catastrophe of Antiochus, belonging to the middle of the times, and the time of the end lying in the distant future, are so comprehended in one clause in an answer to a question regarding a point of time? How as it possible that to the question, How long continues the end of the wonders? it could be answered: For three and a half years shall Antiochus carry on his work; and when it comes to an end in the breaking of the people, then all shall come to an end? Thus the last only would be an answer to the question, and the first an addition not appertaining to it. Or how were it possible that for the expression, 'all shall be ended,' two characteristics were given, one of which belonged to the time of Antiochus and the other to the time of the end?" And, we must further ask, are we necessitated by the statement to make such an unnatural supposition? Certainly not. The two clauses do not give two different definitions of time, i.e., refer to different periods of time, but only two definitions of one period of time, the first of which describes its course according to a symbolical measure of time, the second its termination according to an actual characteristic. None of these definitions of time has any reference to the oppression of the holy people by Antiochus, but the one as well as the other refers to the tribulation of the time of the end. The measure of time: time, times, and half a time, does not indeed correspond to the duration of the dominion of the little horn proceeding from the Javanic world-kingdom (spoken of in Daniel 8) equals 2300 evening-mornings (Daniel 8:14), but literally (for מועד corresponds with the Chald. עדּן) agrees with that in Daniel 7:25, for the dominion of the hostile king, the Antichrist, rising out of the ten kingdoms of the fourth or last world-kingdom. יד נפּץ כּכלּות also refers to this enemy; for of him it is said, Daniel 7:21, Daniel 7:25, that he shall prevail against and destroy the saints of the Most High (יבלּא, Daniel 7:25).

The reference of both the statements in the oath to the history of the end, or the time of Antichrist, has therefore been recognised by Auberlen and Zndel, although the latter understands also, with Hofmann, Daniel 11:36-45 of the oppression of Israel by Antiochus. To the question, how long the end of the terrible things prophesied of in Daniel 11:40-12:1 shall continue, the Angel of the Lord hovering over the waters answered with a solemn oath: Three and a half times, which, according to the prophecy of Daniel 7:25 and Daniel 9:26-27, are given for the fullest unfolding of the power of the last enemy of God till his destruction; and when in this time of unparalleled oppression the natural strength of the holy people shall be completely broken to piece, then shall these terrible things have reached their end. Regarding the definition of time, cf. The exposition under Daniel 7:25.

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