Preamble to the Book of Daniel
For the sake of brevity I would like to start our study of Daniel and Revelation in Deuteronomy. In Deuteronomy 4; 8:19-20; 11; 28; 20 we are told that if Israel obeys God they will prosper and He will protect them as a nation and that all the world will be drawn to them and they will have the opportunity to share with the people what a wonderful God they have and what wonderful laws they were given.
If on the other hand they disobey, then God promises to scatter them and destroy them as a nation. But even then He promises that where ever they are at if they repent He will bring them back to Israel and reestablish them. In I Kings 8; II Chronicles 36 He repeats the promises and the outcome of their rebellion.
With the above in mind we have another concept to address briefly. In Isaiah God again tells Israel that if they rebel then He will punish by sending Babylon against them and will punish them. In Jeremiah God again tells them that they will be punished and that their nation, temple, and way of life will be destroyed. He then promises them (He covenants with them) to bring them back in 70 years. Jeremiah 25:9-12; 29:10. It is this prophecy that brings hope to Israel and is the emotional and spiritual setting that Daniel fits in. In addition all the types of Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Daniel are repeated in Revelation just on a worldwide basis rather than just a local/national basis.
We have another historical highlight, in II Chronicles 36:5-8; 9-10; 11-21 we have three offers of mercy by God to Israel. Each time He gives them opportunity to repent and submit they rebel and Nebuchadnezzar comes back and destroys a little more of Israel until the last time Neb. wipes Jerusalem clean. A question for all of you, is this the same process of the three angels messages of Revelation 14?
We also know that the God of the Old Testament is the Pre-Incarnate Christ. We know this from Exodus 3:1-14 where Jesus states that He is the “I Am”. In John 8:58 Jesus makes this same claim to be “the I Am”. When the Jews heard Him say this they were ready to stone Him. When we hear it we are ready to praise Him. To know that Jesus was the God of the Old Testament brings so much clarity as to what Jesus was saying and doing in both testamental periods. We know this for God claims that He does not change. He was the same loving God in the Old Testament as He was in the New Testament.
One last thought before we tackle the individual chapters of Daniel. Since Jesus is the I Am of the Old Testament then we also know that Jesus was the God of prophecy as described in Isaiah 46:9-10. Jesus, the Pre-Incarnate Son of God, the I Am, and all of the other titles described in Isaiah 9:6 is also the God of Prophecy. He knew the end from the beginning. He knew what things were coming and He knew how to care for every emergency and every contingency. Israel could have trusted in Him, and we can learn from them and trust the all knowing and all seeing God, today.
With the above things in mind let us proceed with a discussion of the Book of Daniel. Let us look to see the presence of Christ in all of the events of Daniel. Let us look at Daniel not so much as a book of prophecies but let us look at Daniel as the Old Testament Revelation of Jesus Christ.