And he said, Go your way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Go thy way.—That is, be at peace. Observe that the matter is not explained to Daniel any further. He is assured that the end will most certainly come. Compare another gentle rebuke that was addressed to one who wished to see further than was fitting into the future (John 21:21-22).
Closed up and sealed.—To be explained as in Daniel 12:4. The book is to be carefully preserved till the end of time.Daniel 12:4, he had told Daniel to shut up, and seal the book, for his revelations were ended. He here repeats substantially the same thing, and he assures him that no more could be imparted on the subject.
For the words are closed up and sealed until the time of the end - He had finished his communication, and had directed Daniel to close up the record which he made of it, and to affix a seal to the volume, Daniel 12:4. He regarded the whole, therefore, as closed and sealed, until the "end" should come. The events themselves would unfold the meaning of the prediction more fully, and would confirm its truth by their exact correspondence with it. Yet, though the revelation was closed, and all that the angel had designed to say had been said, he does, in the subsequent verses, throw out some suggestions as to the time, or as to some important events which were to mark the termination of the wonders referred to. They are bare hints, however, the meaning of which was to be reserved until the time when the predictions would be accomplished, and they are not of such a nature that they can be supposed to have furnished any additional light to Daniel, or to have done anything to relieve the perplexity of his mind in the case.Daniel 12:4, and Daniel 8:26. God is choice in keeping the keys of time at his own girdle, Acts 1:7. Daniel 12:13.
For the words are closed up, and sealed till the time of the end; that is, till the time comes, or draws near, that they shall be accomplished; till then they would not be clearly understood, but remain in a great measure dark and obscure, though sure and certain: it is suggested they would not always remain so; time is the best interpreter of prophecy, and, the nearer the time of the accomplishment of it is, the clearer it appears, things leading the way to it being gradually fulfilled; but clearest of all when it is accomplished; then it is no more shut and sealed, but open and manifest; See Gill on Daniel 12:4.And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)9. Go, Daniel, &c.] i.e. do not inquire further: for the words are shut up and sealed (Daniel 12:4) till the time of the end: if Daniel does not understand them, it does not signify; they are not intended for him, but for readers in a distant future, viz. in the age of Antiochus Epiphanes, when they will first be divulged.Verse 9. - And he said, Go thy way, Daniel; for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. The Septuagint omits the last clause, and completes this verse from that which succeeds, "And he said, Depart, Daniel; for the commands are veiled and sealed until many shall be tried and shall be sanctified." Theodotion renders, "Come, Daniel, because the words are fenced and sealed till the time of the end." The Peshitta and the Vulgate agree with the Massoretic. Go thy way, Daniel. This is a refusal to grant Daniel's prayer, but in the refusal no condemnation of Daniel is implied. The oracles were sealed until circumstance broke the seal. The purpose of prophecy was not to enable men to write history beforehand. It is to be a sign that, recognized in its fulfilment, may afford evidence of the Divinity of the message or person to whom it referred. Closed up and sealed. This verse gives us the real meaning of these words. Daniel's oracles were not concealed and sealed from being read, but because they were not interpreted they were not understood. For even to Daniel they are "closed up and sealed." Till the time of the end. This is omitted, as may be seen above, from the Septuagint. Although this has a satisfactory meaning, yet it seems better to connect this verse more directly with that which follows.
After Daniel had for a while contemplated the rising up of the little horn that appeared among the ten horns, the scene changed. There is a solemn sitting in judgment by God, and sentence is pronounced. Seats or chairs were placed. רמיו, activ. with an indefinite subject: they were thrown, i.e., they were placed in order quickly, or with a noise. Seats, not merely a throne for God the Judge, but a number of seats for the assembly sitting in judgment with God. That assembly consists neither of the elders of Israel (Rabb.), nor of glorified men (Hengstb. on Revelation 4:4), but of angels (Psalm 89:8), who are to be distinguished from the thousands and tens of thousands mentioned in Daniel 7:10; for these do not sit upon thrones, but stand before God as servants to fulfil His commands and execute His judgments. יומין עתּיק, one advanced in days, very old, is not the Eternal; for although God is meant, yet Daniel does not see the everlasting God, but an old man, or a man of grey hairs, in whose majestic from God makes Himself visible (cf. Ezekiel 1:26). When Daniel represents the true God as an aged man, he does so not in contrast with the recent gods of the heathen which Antiochus Epiphanes wished to introduce, or specially with reference to new gods, as Hitzig and Kran. suppose, by reference to Deuteronomy 32:17 and Jeremiah 23:23; for God is not called the old God, but appears only as an old man, because age inspires veneration and conveys the impression of majesty. This impression is heightened by the robe with which He is covered, and by the appearance of the hair of His head, and also by the flames of fire which are seen to go forth from His throne. His robe is white as snow, and the hair of His head is white like pure wool; cf. Revelation 1:14. Both are symbols of spotless purity and holiness. Flames of fire proceed from His throne as if it consisted of it, and the wheels of His throne scatter forth fire. One must not take the fire exclusively as a sign of punishment. Fire and the shining of fire are the constant phenomena of the manifestation of God in the world, as the earthly elements most fitting for the representation of the burning zeal with which the holy God not only punishes and destroys sinners, but also purifies and renders glorious His own people; see under Exodus 3:3. The fire-scattering wheels of the throne show the omnipresence of the divine throne of judgment, the going of the judgment of God over the whole earth (Kliefoth). The fire which engirds with flame the throne of God pours itself forth as a stream from God into the world, consuming all that is sinful and hostile to God in the world, and rendering the people and kingdom of God glorious. קדמוהי מן (from before Him) refers to God, and not to His throne. A thousand times a thousand and ten thousand times ten thousand are hyperbolical expressions for an innumerable company of angels, who as His servants stand around God; cf. Deuteronomy 33:2; Psalm 68:18. The Keri presents the Chaldaic form אלפין for the Hebraizing form of the text אלפים (thousands), and for רבון the Hebraizing form רבבן (myriads), often found in the Targg., to harmonize the plur. form with the singular רבּו going before.
Forthwith the judgment begins. יתב דּינא we translate, with most interpreters, the judgment sets itself. דּינא, judgment, abstr. pro concreto, as judicium in Cicero, Verr. 2. 18. This idea alone is admissible in Daniel 7:26, and here also it is more simple than that defended by Dathe and Kran.: "He" (i.e., the Ancient of days) "sets Himself for judgment," - which would form a pure tautology, since His placing Himself for judgment has been already (Daniel 7:9) mentioned, and nothing would be said regarding the object for which the throne was set. - "The books were opened." The actions of men are recorded in the books, according to which they are judged, some being ordained to eternal life and others condemned to eternal death; cf. Revelation 20:12, and the notes under Daniel 12:1. The horn speaking great things is first visited with the sentence of death.
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