Daniel 10

CHAPTER X

This and the two following chapters give an account of Daniel's

last vision, wherein the succession of the Persian and Grecian

monarchies is described, together with the wars that should

take place between Syria and Egypt under the latter monarchy.

The last part of the vision (from Da 11:36)

seems to relate chiefly to the persecutions of the Church in

the times of Antichrist, till it be purified from all its

pollutions; after which will follow that glorious kingdom of

the saints spoken of in the seventh and eighth chapters. This

chapter begins with an account of Daniel's fasting and

humiliation, 1-3.

Then we have a description of the Divine person who appeared to

the prophet, not unlike him who appeared to the apostle in the

isle of Patmos, 4-21. See Re 1:10-16.

NOTES ON CHAP. X

Verse 1. In the third year of Cyrus] Which answers to the first

year of Darius the Mede.

The time appointed was long] vetsaba gadol, but

the warfare long; there will be many contentions and wars before

these things can be accomplished.

Verse 2. I-was mourning three full weeks.] The weeks are most

probably dated from the time of the termination of the last

vision. Calmet proves this by several reasons.

Verse 3. I ate no pleasant bread] This fast was rather a general

abstinence; living all the while on coarse and unsavoury food;

drinking nothing but water; not using the bath, and most probably

wearing haircloth next the skin, during the whole of the time.

Verse 4. By the side of-Hiddekel] The same as the Tigris, the

great river of Assyria; as the Euphrates of Syria, and the Nile of

Egypt.

Verse 5. Clothed in linen] The description is intended to point

out the splendour of the garments.

Gold of Uphaz] The same as Ophir.

Verse 6. His body also was like the beryl] The description of

this person is very similar to that of our Lord in Re 1:13-15.

Verse 7. The men that were with me saw not the vision] An

exactly parallel case with what occurred at the conversion of Saul

of Tarsus, Ac 9:7. There was a Divine influence which they all

felt, but only Daniel saw the corporeal appearance.

Verse 9. Was I in a deep sleep] I fell into a swoon.

Verse 10. A hand touched me] Nothing was apparent or palpable

but a hand. A hand had written Belshazzar's fate upon the wall;

and the hand is frequently mentioned when the power or majesty of

God is intended. Perhaps by hand God himself may be meant. It is

remarkable that in a very ancient MS. of the Septuagint, more than

a thousand years old, now in the imperial library of Vienna,

adorned with paintings which have been engraved for the catalogue

of Lambechius, and transferred to that of Nesselius, all the

appearances of God are represented by a hand in the clouds.

Verse 12. I am come for thy words] On account of thy prayers I

am sent to comfort and instruct thee.

Verse 13. But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me]

I think it would go far to make a legend or a precarious tale of

this important place to endeavour to maintain that either a good

or evil ANGEL is intended here. Cyrus alone was the prince of

Persia, and God had destined him to be the deliverer of his

people; but there were some matters, of which we are not informed,

that caused him to hesitate for some time. Fearing, probably, the

greatness of the work, and not being fully satisfied of his

ability to execute it, he therefore for a time resisted the secret

inspirations which God had sent him. The opposition might be in

reference to the building of the temple.

But lo, Michael] Gabriel, who speaks, did not leave Cyrus till

Michael came to take his place. Michael, he who is like God,

sometimes appears to signify the Messiah, at other times the

highest or chief archangel. Indeed there is no archangel

mentioned in the whole Scripture but this one. See Jude 1:9;

Re 12:7.

Verse 14. For yet the vision is for many days.] There are many

things which remain yet to be revealed, and the time of their

accomplishment is very distant.

Verse 15. I set my face toward the ground] He was standing

upright, Da 10:11, and he now bent his body in reverence, and

looked down upon the ground.

And became dumb.] Found himself unable to speak.

Verse 16. Like the similitude of the sons of men.] I think

Gabriel is here meant, who appeared to Daniel in a human form; and

so in Da 10:18, and see also Da 9:21.

Touched my lips] Before this he was unable to speak.

By the vision] The vision that I have already had, and of which

I have not a proper knowledge has greatly afflicted me, because I

see it intimates grievous calamities to my people. See Da 9:26.

Verse 17. Neither is there breath] He could not breathe freely;

he was almost suffocated with sorrow.

Verse 19. O man, greatly beloved] ish chamudoth, man

of delights; the most amiable of men.

Let my lord speak] I am now so strengthened and encouraged, that

I shall be able to bear any revelation that thou mayest make.

Verse 20. Knowest thou wherefore I come] So high art thou in the

favour of God, that he hath sent me unto thee to give thee farther

satisfaction; though I was elsewhere employed upon a most

important mission, and I must speedily return to accomplish it,

viz.:-

To fight with the king of Persia] To remove all the scruples of

Cyrus, and to excite him to do all that God designs him to do for

the restoration of my people, and the rebuilding of the city and

temple of Jerusalem. Nothing less than a supernatural agency in

the mind of Cyrus can account for his decree in favour of the

Jews. He had no natural, no political inclination to it; and his

reluctance to obey the heavenly motions is here represented as a

fight between him and the angel.

The prince of Grecia shall come.] I believe this refers to

Alexander the Great, who was to destroy the Persian empire. See

the second and third verses of the following chapter.

See Clarke on Da 11:2; "Da 11:3".

Verse 21. Noted in the scripture of truth] Perhaps this refers

to what he had already written down. See the preceding visions,

which Daniel did not fully understand, though a general impression

from them had filled his heart with sorrow.

Michael your prince.] The archangel mentioned before, Da 10:13,

and who has been always supposed to be appointed by God as the

guardian of the Jewish nation. It appears that God chose to make

use of the ministry of angels in this work; that angels, as they

could be only in one place at one time, could not produce

influence where they were not; and that, to carry on the operation

on the mind of the Persian king, it was necessary that either

Gabriel or Michael should be present with him, and when one went

on another commission another took his place; see Da 10:13. But

we know so little of the invisible world that we cannot safely

affirm any thing positively.

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