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The prophecies of Daniel 12

Query for the Month

of July 2003

Next up-date: August 1st 2003 (God willing).

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    • Daniel 12:

      11 And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that makes desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days.

      12 Blessed is he that waits, and comes to the thousand three hundred and thirty-five days.

      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.

    What does this prophecy mean, and when will the two times be fulfilled?

Let’s look at the prophecies in Daniel 12.

As we do this, I need to remind you that what I see in the Scriptures may not be entirely accurate for I am a faulty human being like all of us and require constant teaching and reminding. And it certainly won’t be the full truth for that unfolds and deepens from time to time as the "Sun of righteousness" rises in our lives. But I will attempt to share with you some of what God has shown me.

To understand the answer to any question in the Bible we need to know the context, who was speaking, and to whom the answer was addressed. So let’s look at that first.


Daniel 12:

5 Then I Daniel looked, and, behold, there stood other two, the one on this side of the bank of the river, and the other on that side of the bank of the river. 6 And one said to the Man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, "How long shall it be to the end of these wonders?"

7 And I heard the Man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when He held up His right hand and His left hand to heaven, and swore by Him that lives for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and a half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.

8 And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, "O my LORD, what shall be the end of these things?"

9 And He said, "Go your way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end [not the end of time]. 10 Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.

11 "And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that makes desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days. 12 Blessed is he that waits, and comes to the thousand three hundred and thirty-five days.

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."


What does this mean?

After being given his vision of chapters 10 and 11, and the conversation in the beginning of chapter 12, Daniel was shown Jesus standing on the waters of the river with an angel on each bank. So he heard the question being put to Jesus, "How long can these failures and defeats [of chapter 11] go on? How long can the devil overcome the people of God?" (See also Revelation 13:7.)

The answer Jesus gave was that it would be for "a time, times and half a time", which we know today to mean the 1260 years between 538AD and 1798AD. Jesus not only spoke this, but swore that it would be so and this distressed Daniel greatly. When everything looked really hopeless, "when he [Satan] shall have accomplished [his purpose] . . ." that’s when it would come right!

That this could happen again to God’s people upset Daniel very much for he had just lived through such a time, yet this is normal for God because He wants Satan to have all the opportunity to show his character to the universe.

Unlike Daniel we have the consolation of the events at the crucifixion, that at that time everything appeared lost but wasn’t. So it will be in the last days.

Daniel, that keen and obedient man of God, could not understand how the people of God could allow things to so deteriorate so he also asked a question, "What shall be . . ."

The answer to that was "Don’t worry too much about it, it will all come right in ‘the time of the end’." In between times many would pay with their lives for choosing to walk in God’s way, and there would be great confusion among the rejecters of truth, but those who followed God would eventually understand.

Then Christ mentioned two of the "what shall be’s".

He said, the "daily" must be "taken away" and the "abomination . . . set up" in its place. The period of the "abomination" would be 1,290 days, 30 years longer than the "wonders" or persecutions. But He didn’t say at which end of the period the 30 years belonged.

From another prophecy, we know that the 1260 years was from 538AD to 1798AD, the time when Satan’s system ruled in Europe. (God’s people basically moved out into the rest of the inhabited world for that period and left only a few "holding the fort" as it were, in Europe, and Christians only showed up plainly at the beginning of the reformation around 1517.)

He says of that time:


Revelation 3:

1 And to the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things says He that has the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know your works, that you have a name [among men] that you live, and are [nearly] dead.

2 Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found your works perfect before God. 3 Remember therefore how you have received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore you shall not watch, I will come on you as a thief, and you shall not know what hour I will come upon you [October 22,1844].

4 You have a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with Me in white: for they are worthy. [The rest were daughters of Babylon. Revelation 17:5.]


During the bulk of the 1260 years, the Son of God also said,


Revelation 2:

24 But to you I say, and to the rest in Thyatira, as many as have not this doctrine, and which have not known the depths of Satan, as they speak; I will put upon you no other burden. 25 But that which you have already hold fast till I come.


The result of this "abomination" was that the understanding of Jesus as an ever-present and approachable Saviour was lost. Satan’s system put a man between the sinner and Christ in the heavenly sanctuary, by introducing a priest and a church on earth. "The place of His sanctuary was cast down [to the earth]". See Daniel 8:11-12. The heavenly vision faded in the minds of men and the worldly system took its place. The "daily" gave place to the abominable "mass". The understanding of "Justification by faith" was replaced with "Righteousness by works."

Christ had said that this "scattering of power of the holy people" would last for 1260 years [Note that it is the POWER which is weakened, not the people]. We know that this "scattering" finished in 1798 when the power of the earthly popes over many of the people was at last destroyed in Europe. But He also told us that from the setting up of this Satanic system would be 1290 day/years. When we look into history we find that the popes assumed their power in 508AD and took some 30 years to perfect their counterfeit. Thus the extra 30 years are at the beginning of the time period, and 1290 years from 508AD brings us back to 1798. At that time God’s public work passed to North America and the "power of the holy people" revived. The declaration of 1776 paved the way for it, and from 1798 we have the beginning of the "time of the end."

Having established the starting date for us Jesus takes us to those who would be around at the end of 1335 years and who would receive the blessing! That takes us from 508 to 1843. The advent people who listened to William Miller and many others like him expected Christ any day from 1st January to December 31st of that year, and were indeed blessed. Without any message except the word of God they expected the Son of God’s return and acted out their faith with great love. The fact that they were wrong in their reckoning did not mean that their love was any the less.  I read in one of my library books:

"With unspeakable desire those who had received the message watched for the coming of their Saviour. The time when they expected to meet Him was at hand. They approached this hour with a calm solemnity. They rested in sweet communion with God, an earnest of the peace that was to be theirs in the bright hereafter. None who experienced this hope and trust can forget those precious hours of waiting.

"For some weeks preceding the time, worldly business was for the most part laid aside. The sincere believers carefully examined every thought and emotion of their hearts as if upon their deathbeds and in a few hours to close their eyes upon earthly scenes. There was no making of "ascension robes" . . . but all felt the need of internal evidence that they were prepared to meet the Saviour; their white robes were purity of soul - characters cleansed from sin by the atoning blood of Christ.

"Would that there were still with the professed people of God the same spirit of heart searching, the same earnest, determined faith. Had they continued thus to humble themselves before the Lord and press their petitions at the mercy seat they would be in possession of a far richer experience than they now have. There is too little prayer, too little real conviction of sin, and the lack of living faith leaves many destitute of the grace so richly provided by our Redeemer. [Revelation 3:17.]

"God designed to prove His people. His hand covered a mistake in the reckoning of the prophetic periods. Adventists did not discover the error, nor was it discovered by the most learned of their opponents. The latter said: "Your reckoning of the prophetic periods is correct. Some great event is about to take place; but it is not what Mr. Miller predicts; it is the conversion of the world, and not the second advent of Christ."

"The time of expectation passed, and Christ did not appear for the deliverance of His people. Those who with sincere faith and love had looked for their Saviour, experienced a bitter disappointment. Yet the purposes of God were being accomplished; He was testing the hearts of those who professed to be waiting for His appearing. There were among them many who had been actuated by no higher motive than fear. Their profession of faith had not affected their hearts or their lives. When the expected event failed to take place, these persons declared that they were not disappointed; they had never believed that Christ would come. They were among the first to ridicule the sorrow of the true believers.

"But Jesus and all the heavenly host looked with love and sympathy upon the tried and faithful yet disappointed ones. Could the veil separating the visible from the invisible world have been swept back, angels would have been seen drawing near to these steadfast souls and shielding them from the shafts of Satan."

What we don’t know is WHEN in 508AD did the promise of the blessing commence.

But if we consider the decree of 457BC which was given in October of that year, and the resulting understanding that the cleansing of the sanctuary began on October 22, 1844 (the 2300 year prophecy), so it was that the blessing could also be related to October 1844.  Using a straight calculation from 457BC by adding 2300 gives an answer of 1843 and it needed God’s hand to show the error. In like manner, by adding 1335 to 508AD we get 1843.

We also know that the verses of Revelation 10 cover the period from when Christ came down and reinstated Daniel "in his place" by opening the book in 1798.


Revelation 10:

1 And I saw another mighty Angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon His head, and His face was as it were the sun, and His feet as pillars of fire: 2 and He had in His hand a little book open [the book of Daniel]: and He set His right foot upon the sea, and His left foot on the earth, 3 and cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roars. And when He had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices.

4 And when the seven thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying to me, "Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not."

5 And the Angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth lifted up His hand to heaven, 6 and swore by Him that lives for ever and ever, Who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, THAT THERE SHOULD BE TIME NO LONGER: 7 but in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, WHEN HE SHALL BEGIN TO SOUND [Revelation 11:15], the mystery of God should be finished [fully understood and acted on], as He has declared to His servants the prophets.

8 And the voice which I heard from heaven spoke to me again, and said, "Go and take the little book which is open in the hand of the Angel which stands upon the sea and upon the earth." 9 And I went to the Angel, and said to Him, "Give me the little book [let me understand it]." And He said to me, "Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make your belly bitter, but it shall be in your mouth sweet as honey." 10 And I took the little book out of the Angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter [because of the disappointments of 1843 and 1844].

11 And He said to me, "You must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings."


The words of the seven "thunders" are described:


"After these seven thunders uttered their voices, the injunction comes to John as to Daniel in regard to the little book: "Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered." These relate to future events which will be disclosed in their order. Daniel shall stand in his lot at the end of the days.

"John sees the little book unsealed. Then Daniel's prophecies have their proper place in the first, second, and third angels' messages to be given to the world. The unsealing of the little book was THE MESSAGE IN RELATION TO TIME [not the prophecies, they are clear enough in Daniel].

"The books of Daniel and the Revelation are one. One is a prophecy, the other a revelation; one a book sealed, the other a book opened. John heard the mysteries which the thunders uttered, but he was commanded not to write them.

But here we are told what they spoke about.

"The special light given to John which was expressed in the seven thunders was a delineation of events which would transpire under the first and second angels' messages [from 1833-1843]. It was not best for the people to know these things, for their faith must necessarily be tested. In the order of God most wonderful and advanced truths would be proclaimed. The first and second angels' messages were to be proclaimed, but no further light was to be revealed before these messages had done their specific work. This is represented by the angel standing with one foot on the sea, proclaiming with a most solemn oath that time should be no longer.

"This time, which the angel declares with a solemn oath, is not the end of this world's history, neither of probationary time, BUT OF PROPHETIC TIME, which should precede the advent of our Lord. That is, the people will not have another message upon definite time. After this period of time, reaching from 1842 to 1844, there can be no definite tracing of the prophetic time. The longest reckoning reaches to the autumn of 1844.

"The angel's position, with one foot on the sea, the other on the land, signifies the wide extent of the proclamation of the message. It will cross the broad waters and be proclaimed in other countries, even to all the world. The comprehension of truth, the glad reception of the message, is represented in the eating of the little book. The truth in regard to the time of the advent of our Lord was a precious message to our souls."

We should note that the Angel told John that God’s people would have to "prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings." Thus we can expect a repetition of the events of Daniel 12 and Revelation 10.

Let’s think about that.

Could it be that, because prophetic time ceased in 1844, that the periods mentioned in Daniel 12 and Revelation 10 which need to be repeated, will become literal? That there will be another abomination set up (not the mass, but the international Sunday law) and that this will exist for 1260 days or three and a half years? Could it be that we will have 30 days advance notice in which to "leave the city", and that those of us who come to the end of the total period will receive a great blessing?

If that is the case, then prior to this there will be a great downtreading of the saints known to us as "the time of trouble" in which the church will all but disappear. He (Satan) must "accomplish to scatter . . . "


Revelation 13:

5 And there was given to him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given to him to continue forty-two months [three and a half years]. 6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, and His tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.

7 And it was given to him to make war with the saints, and [eventually] TO OVERCOME [silence] THEM: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations [the entire world]. 8 And ALL that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

9 If any man have an ear, let him hear.


We don’t know (and won’t know) when this period will commence from any Bible text, because we will not have another message based on time. That is, the people will not have another message upon definite time. After this period of time, reaching from 1842 to 1844, there can be no definite tracing of the prophetic time.

Like the Christians in Jerusalem before 70AD, we will need to hear the voice of the Spirit telling us individually when to leave. Matthew 24:15-22.

"As the decree issued by the various rulers of Christendom against commandment keepers shall withdraw the protection of government and abandon them to those who desire their destruction, the people of God will flee from the cities and villages and associate together in companies, dwelling in the most desolate and solitary places [they have finished their work]. Many will find refuge in the strongholds of the mountains. Like the Christians of the Piedmont valleys, they will make the high places of the earth their sanctuaries and will thank God for "the munitions of rocks." Isaiah 33:16.

"But many of all nations and of all classes, high and low, rich and poor, black and white, will be cast into the most unjust and cruel bondage [These have dallied.]. The beloved of God pass weary days, bound in chains, shut in by prison bars, sentenced to be slain, some apparently left to die of starvation in dark and loathsome dungeons. No human ear is open to hear their moans; no human hand is ready to lend them help."

What we have is the definite witness of Daniel.


Daniel 7:

21 I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them; 22

(1) until the ancient/ of days came [in 1844], and [until]

(2) judgment was given to the saints of the most High [after the second advent]; and [until]

(3) the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom [?].


Think on this!


The prophecies of Daniel 12 first relate to events which have already passed, but can have another application in the future.  They began in history when an "abomination" (in God's sight) was set up, and therefore we can expect another "abomination"  in the future.

Who wants to add (or subtract!) from these thoughts? I won't argue as I have stated, but I will publish your Scriptures so that we may review all the words of God on the subject.
Next query. To be discussed from August 1st 2003.

Matthew 23:

8 But be not you called “Rabbi” [or any other religious title denoting superiority]: for One is your Master, even Christ; and all you are brethren. 9 And call no man your father [in the religious sense] upon the earth: for One is your Father, which is in heaven.

10 Neither be you called “masters”: for One is your Master, even Christ. 11 But he that is greatest among you shall be your [greatest] servant. 12 And whoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.

Why do so many churches seem to ignore this command?

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