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A Chiastic Reconfiguration Of Daniel 10-12
Part 3: Daniel 12

Kuruvilla Thomas
Bangalore
Published on 22 March 2019 *



Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

Daniel 10-12 Timeline

Fig. 1


Introduction

In Part 3 of this 3-part analysis of Daniel 10-12, we show that Daniel 12 and parts of Daniel 11 form a cryptochiasmus. If you wish to skip the technicalities of a chiastic parse, you may read starting from Section 4 of the Discussion section, which has the reconfigured text.

Daniel 12 is a short, cryptic chapter that contains predictions that are explicitly designated as sealed. We will show these verses can be deciphered when chiastically combined with the restructured Daniel 11 passage from Part 2. This passage gives us the crucial date of the final resurrection at the end of the world.


Discussion

1. Presuppositions

We base our parse on Daniel 12 on the assumption that it refers to 3 periods:

While parsing, we will ensure that each prophecy has a time period attached to it (for ex., 1290 days) and has the "time of the end" phrase in it (11:35, 12:4, 12:9). The "time of the end" in these passages indicate the end of Satan's reign and the start of Christ's Millennial reign.


2. Parsing the chiasmus

We will use the NIV translation for this parse.

Parsing this chiasmus involves dividing the text into three categories as above. We will call the period of The First Jewish–Roman War Period 2, the Reign of the Antichrist Period 3, and the period of the End Times resurrection Period 4 (Period 1 was the period from Cyrus to Epiphanes in the previous chapter).

Categorizing vs 1-13

Vs 1 belongs to Period 2. Michael, the protector of Israel will stand by. Jerusalem will be destroyed and the Judahites in it will be slaughtered. Daniel's people - the Judahite Christians who are in the book - are saved.

Vs 2-7 belong to Period 4. The final resurrection takes place and the power of the holy ones is overspread. This scroll is sealed and the allotted time is "time, times and half a time".

Vs 8-11 belongs to Period 2. This scroll is sealed, the time span is 1290 days.

Vs 12-13 appears to belong to Period 3. One of the reasons we place this passage in Period 3 is that we have a new time period - 1335 days.



Original text

We color-code the chiastic units of the original text (NIV) below for easy visual identification using: blue for Period 2, green for Period 3, red for Period 4.

We place the last two Periods that we parsed out from the reconfiguration of chapter 11 at the top.



Chapter 11
30b He will return and show favor to those who forsake the holy covenant.

32 With flattery he will corrupt those who have violated the covenant, but the people who know their God will firmly resist him.
33 “Those who are wise will instruct many, though for a time they will fall by the sword or be burned or captured or plundered. 34 When they fall, they will receive a little help, and many who are not sincere will join them. 35 Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.
36 “The king will do as he pleases. He will exalt and magnify himself above every god and will say unheard-of things against the God of gods. He will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, for what has been determined must take place.

31 “His armed forces will rise up to desecrate the temple fortress and will abolish the daily sacrifice. Then they will set up the abomination that causes desolation.

Chapter 12
1 “At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book—will be delivered.
2 Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. 3 Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever. 4 But you, Daniel, roll up and seal the words of the scroll until the time of the end. Many will go here and there to increase knowledge.”
5 Then I, Daniel, looked, and there before me stood two others, one on this bank of the river and one on the opposite bank. 6 One of them said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, “How long will it be before these astonishing things are fulfilled?”
7 The man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, lifted his right hand and his left hand toward heaven, and I heard him swear by him who lives forever, saying, “It will be for a time, times and half a time. When the power of the holy people has been finally broken, all these things will be completed.”
8 I heard, but I did not understand. So I asked, “My lord, what will the outcome of all this be?”
9 He replied, “Go your way, Daniel, because the words are rolled up and sealed until the time of the end. 10 Many will be purified, made spotless and refined, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. None of the wicked will understand, but those who are wise will understand.
11 “From the time that the daily sacrifice is abolished and the abomination that causes desolation is set up, there will be 1,290 days.
12 Blessed is the one who waits for and reaches the end of the 1,335 days.
13 “As for you, go your way till the end. You will rest, and then at the end of the days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance.”



3. Building the reconfigured text

From this parse, it appears that these verses form a cryptochiasmus as below:

A1   11:30b,32-36 Period 3. Antichrist against the holy covenant (Christianity).
  B1   11:31, 12:1 Period 2. End of sacrifice...abomination that causes desolation.
    X   12:2-7 Period 4. Resurrection and judgement...time, times and half a time.
  B2   12:8-11 Period 2. Daily sacrifice stopped... 1290 days.
A2   12:12-13 Period 3. Blessed is the one who reaches the end, 1335 days.


We now reconstruct the phrases in the right order based on the chiastic structure above and based on the ordering rules of a cryptochiasmus [1].

We lead with the central pivot point 'X'. The corresponding subunits (For ex., subunit A1 corresponds to A2) are placed contiguously to form units (For ex., A1,A2 is a unit) so that we get a list of such units.

The sequence selected for rearrangement is:

X  [A1,A2]  [B1,B2]      (1)


Translating (1) into verse numbers, we get:

[12:2-7]  [[11:30b, 32-36], 12:12-13]  [[11:31, 12:1], 12:8-11]       (2)

We arrive at the reconfigured passage in the next section by rearranging the verses so they are in sequence (2).



4. Daniel 11 and 12 Reconfigured

Period 4 The Period of the End Times Resurrection (2967AD) (Vs 12:2-7)

2 Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. 3 Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever. 4 But you, Daniel, roll up and seal the words of the scroll until the time of the end. Many will go here and there to increase knowledge.”
5 Then I, Daniel, looked, and there before me stood two others, one on this bank of the river and one on the opposite bank. 6 One of them said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, “How long will it be before these astonishing things are fulfilled?”
7 The man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, lifted his right hand and his left hand toward heaven, and I heard him swear by him who lives forever, saying, “It will be for a time, times and half a time. When the power of the holy people has been finally broken, all these things will be completed.”


Period 3 The reign of the Antichrist (shortly after 2017AD) (Vs. 11:30b, 32-36, 12:12-13)

Chapter 11
30b He will return and show favor to those who forsake the holy covenant.

32 With flattery he will corrupt those who have violated the covenant, but the people who know their God will firmly resist him.
33 “Those who are wise will instruct many, though for a time they will fall by the sword or be burned or captured or plundered. 34 When they fall, they will receive a little help, and many who are not sincere will join them. 35 Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.
36 “The king will do as he pleases. He will exalt and magnify himself above every god and will say unheard-of things against the God of gods. He will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, for what has been determined must take place.

Chapter 12
12 Blessed is the one who waits for and reaches the end of the 1,335 days.
13 “As for you, go your way till the end. You will rest, and then at the end of the days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance.”

Period 2 The first half (66AD–70AD) of The First Jewish–Roman War (66AD–73AD) (Vs. 11:31, 12:1, 12:8-11)

Chapter 11
31 “His armed forces will rise up to desecrate the temple fortress and will abolish the daily sacrifice. Then they will set up the abomination that causes desolation.

Chapter 12
1 “At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book—will be delivered.

8 I heard, but I did not understand. So I asked, “My lord, what will the outcome of all this be?”
9 He replied, “Go your way, Daniel, because the words are rolled up and sealed until the time of the end. 10 Many will be purified, made spotless and refined, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. None of the wicked will understand, but those who are wise will understand.
11 “From the time that the daily sacrifice is abolished and the abomination that causes desolation is set up, there will be 1,290 days.





5. A commentary on the reconfigured text

5.1 Period 4. The Period of the End Times Resurrection (2967AD) (Vs 12:2-7)

Chapter 12 2 Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. 3 Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever.

All the remaining dead will be resurrected in this Period (see also Rev. 20:5,11-15), that is, those who were not raised in the first resurrection (Rev. 20:4,5). The righteous will get their just reward while the wicked will be punished.



Chapter 12 4 But you, Daniel, roll up and seal the words of the scroll until the time of the end. Many will go here and there to increase knowledge.”

Daniel is explicitly told to seal this prophecy until the "time of the end", which is the end of Satan's reign (Period 3), when most of these prophecies are unsealed [2] and prophetic knowledge is increased. "Here and there" refers to the motion of the oars of a boat, and the rowing is a metaphor for efforts to understand scripture.



Chapter 12 5 Then I, Daniel, looked, and there before me stood two others, one on this bank of the river and one on the opposite bank. 6 One of them said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, “How long will it be before these astonishing things are fulfilled?” 7 The man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, lifted his right hand and his left hand toward heaven, and I heard him swear by him who lives forever, saying, “It will be for a time, times and half a time. When the power of the holy people has been finally broken, all these things will be completed.”

After the narration of the detailed prophecy, Daniel takes us back to the scene in Ch. 10 on the banks of the River Tigris. But this time, three angels appear, as if to convey the significance of their next message. We take the position that "these astonishing things" refers to the entire prophecy, and so "time, times and half a time" refers to 3 1/2 millennia or 3500 years. What are the start and end dates of this period and what are the corresponding events?



5.2 Period 3 The reign of the Antichrist (shortly after 2017AD) (Vs. 11:30b, 32-36, 12:12-13)

Chapter 11 30b He will return and show favor to those who forsake the holy covenant.

32 With flattery he will corrupt those who have violated the covenant, but the people who know their God will firmly resist him.


At this time of the Antichrist, the only relevant holy covenant in force is the Christian covenant or Christianity. The Antichrist will try to tempt Christians who have fallen away from their God with favors and flattery. In this context, the text "he will return" may mean that "he will apostatize".



Chapter 11 33 “Those who are wise will instruct many, though for a time they will fall by the sword or be burned or captured or plundered. 34 When they fall, they will receive a little help, and many who are not sincere will join them. 35 Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.


For faithful Christians, especially for those who teach the truth, this will be a time of persecution and death (see also Rev. 13:10). Those who stray from Christianity will be rewarded, and so, many insincere Christians will fall away from the faith. True Christians will have their character improved to be worthy of their rewards during the earthly and heavenly reign of Christ. These troubles are for the limited period, after which, Satan's reign ends ("time of the end") and the Messiah's reign begins.



Chapter 11 36 “The king will do as he pleases. He will exalt and magnify himself above every god and will say unheard-of things against the God of gods. He will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, for what has been determined must take place.

The Antichrist will dominate the world for a time. He will blaspheme against God and place himself above every other god (see also 2 Thess. 2:4, Rev. 13:5-8, Dan. 7:25). He will have totalitarian control of the world after a period of wrath begins, but only for a predetermined period of around 42 months (Rev. 13:5) or 3 1/2 years (Dan. 7:25) as set by God. The wrath of this period will come from Satan and not God (Rev. 12:12).



Chapter 12 12 Blessed is the one who waits for and reaches the end of the 1,335 days.

We believe that this passage, 12:12, must be combined with 11:36b above, and reformulated as below:


11:36b-12:12 He will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, for what has been decreed must take place (blessed is the one who waits) and will extend from 1,335 days.

The period of wrath begins 1335 days after Sep. 23 2017 - the date the Messiah of the Millennial age was anointed (see [6] and [2]). Those who faithfully wait out this period of wrath from Satan will see the start of the Millennial reign,



Chapter 12 13 “As for you, go your way till the end. You will rest, and then at the end of the days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance.”

Daniel is told to wait till "the end" (in this passage, "the end" seems to refer to the end of Satan's reign and the start of Christ's in Period 3) at which time the meaning of the prophecy will be revealed. Daniel will presumably be resurrected at the start of Christ's millennial reign to "rest" (the "Sabbath rest" of the 7th millennium after 6 millennia of toil under Satan - Hebrews 4:1-11) and then receive his heavenly reward at the end of days in Period 4.



5.3 Period 2 The first half (66AD–70AD) of The First Jewish–Roman War (66AD–73AD) (Vs. 11:31, 12:1, 12:8-11)

5.3.1 A Brief History of First Half of The First Jewish–Roman War (66AD–70AD)

This is a brief summary of this war as relevant to this passage. See more details on this period in our paper on the "70 weeks of Daniel" [2].

According to Josephus, the violence was provoked by Greeks sacrificing birds in front of a local synagogue. In protest, one of the Jewish Temple clerks ceased prayers and sacrifices for the Roman Emperor at the Temple in Aug/Sep of 66AD. The Roman governor, Gessius Florus, in a retaliation, plundered the Jewish Temple, launched a raid on the city, and arrested and crucified numerous Judahite leaders. This Roman action and the rebellion that ensued led to the first Jewish Roman war.

The Roman General Vespasian and his son Titus began the campaign to crush the revolt by attacking the Judahite centres surrounding Jerusalem in 67AD. (The 7 year period of the "covenant" between God and Titus begins at this time [2].) Around Mar. of 70AD, Titus arrived at Jerusalem with the Roman Army (the abomination that causes the desolation of Jerusalem) and started preparations for a siege of the city.

By the summer of 70, the Romans had breached the walls of Jerusalem, ransacking and burning nearly the entire city. The Second Temple (the renovated Herod's Temple), one of the last fortified bastions of the rebellion, was destroyed around July 70, and the conquest of the city was completed by Sep. 70AD. According to Josephus, in a city of 1.1 million, 1 million Judahites were killed and 100,000 taken captive; it was almost the entire population of the Judahites in the area.



5.3.2 Commentary on Period 2

Chapter 11 31 “His armed forces will rise up to desecrate the temple fortress and will abolish the daily sacrifice. Then they will set up the abomination that causes desolation.

In the spring of 70AD (around Mar.), the Roman Army under Titus arrived at Jerusalem, effectively stopping the sacrifice at the Temple. Then they laid siege to the city, closing all exits and brutally killing anyone who tried to escape. They were the 'abomination that causes desolation' because they utterly destroyed the city and its people by September of that year.



Chapter 12 1 “At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise. There will be a time of distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations until then. But at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book—will be delivered.

Archangel Michael, the protector of the Judahites, will stand by (and not "stand up" as it is usually translated) and let the Romans destroy Jerusalem. This kind of absolute destruction of the city and its people, as executed by the Romans, has never happened before. Those Judahites who believed in Christ - and so have their names written in the book of life - fled to the mountains, as Jesus had advised, and escaped this suffering and death (Luke 21:20-21).



8 I heard, but I did not understand. So I asked, “My lord, what will the outcome of all this be?” 9 He replied, “Go your way, Daniel, because the words are rolled up and sealed until the time of the end. 10 Many will be purified, made spotless and refined, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. None of the wicked will understand, but those who are wise will understand.

Daniel is told to seal up the prophecy until the "time of the end" in Period 3, making this one of the few prophecies that are explicitly designated as sealed. The "time of the end" seems to refer to the period towards the end of Satan's reign after 2017AD [6] in Period 3, at which time the prophecy will be unsealed. The wicked in this passage are the Judahites who did not believe in Jesus because of the evil doctrines they followed and so were not purified by his gospel.



11 “From the time that the daily sacrifice is abolished and the abomination that causes desolation is set up, there will be 1,290 days.

The 1290 days is the time between the cessation of sacrifices for the Roman Emperor in Sep. of 66AD, and the arrival of the Roman Army in Jerusalem around Mar. of 70AD (the arrival of the Romans caused the cessation of sacrifices for the Judahites). This end date is significant because Jesus warns the Christians living in Jerusalem to flee immediately on seeing the Romans (Matt. 24:15-18).

The two 3 1/2 year sections of the 7 year war consisted of around 1290 days and 1260 days (we get the 1260 days from our parse of Rev. 12 [6]). The difference in length of the sections is on account of the Hebrew calendar of that particular period - the first 'half' had an extra leap month. For a more detailed analysis of these time periods, see the appendix of our paper of the "70 weeks of Daniel" [2].



Conclusion

With this chiastic reconstruction, we show that Daniel 11-12 contains four interwoven prophecies, allowing for a far more coherent and straightforward interpretation of this passage.

The passage has been explicitly designated as sealed in two places, and the opening of these seals may coincide with the release of the horsemen and the associated events in Revelation 6. It may be that the unsealing of 1290-day prophecy, which predicts a period of war before the attack on Jerusalem, releases the rider on the Red horse, which begins a period of war before the Antichrist's reign. The other sealed prophecy in this passage gives us the crucial date of the end times resurrection.





Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

References

[1] A Definition of Cryptochiasmus
[2] A Chiastic Reconfiguration Of "The 70 Weeks Of Daniel"
[3] A Chiastic Reconfiguration Of Daniel 8.
[4] A Chiastic Reconfiguration Of "The Olivet Discourse" in Matthew 24
[5] A Chiastic Reconfiguration Of Revelation 4-22 Part 3: The last days (Period 3)
[6] A Chiastic Reconfiguration Of Revelation 12





* Updated 7/8/2020 with the correct interpretation of the 1290 days, and parsing changes; 31/10/2020 with a more precise final days date and event; 21/4/2021 possible meaning of 1335








Related pages

Daniel 9
Mark 13
Luke 21
Luke 17:22-37
Cryptochiasmus