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An Exegesis Of Daniel 10-12 Based On A Chiastic Reconfiguration Of The Text.
Part 2: Daniel 12.

Kuruvilla Thomas K.
Bangalore (22/3/2019)


Abstract

This study treats Daniel 12 as a "Functional Chiasmus" in order to arrive at a coherent reconfiguration of the text. Text that is arranged in the form of a functional chiasmus must be rearranged based on certain logical principles to be correctly interpreted. A functional chiasmus is a new concept; see definition here [1] .

This study also contains an exegesis of the rearranged text. If you wish to skip the technicalities of a chiastic parse, you may read starting from Part 4 of the Discussion section, which has the reconfigured text.




Daniel 11 and 12 Timeline

Fig. 1


Introduction

Daniel 12 is a short but confusing chapter. We will show that it is arranged to form a functional Chiasmus with chapter 11.


Discussion

1. Presuppositions

The idea behind this parse that this passage contains the interwoven prophecies of 3 periods.
  1. The destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans (c. 70AD) during the The First Jewish–Roman War (circa 66AD–74AD)
  2. The reign of the Antichrist (c. 2000AD)
  3. The "End of the Age" or the last days (circa 3000AD).
Another principle behind the parse is to make sure that each prophecy has a time period (for example 1290 days) attached to it and where possible, contains the "seal the words of the scroll" text.

2. Parsing the chiasmus

We will be using the NIV Bible for this parse.

Parsing this chiasmus involves dividing portions of the text into three categories as above. We will call the period of The First Jewish–Roman War (circa 66AD–74AD) Period 1, The reign of the Antichrist (c. 2000AD) Period 2 and the The "End of the Age" or the last days (circa 3000AD) Period 3.

Categorizing vs 1-13

Vs 1a belong to Period 1. Michael, the protector of Israel will stand by. (and not stand up as is typically translated). Jerusalem will be destroyed and the Judahites in it will be slaughtered.

Vs 1b-7 belong to Period 3. This is a description of the final resurrection and judgement. This scroll is sealed and the allotted time is "time, times and half a time".

Vs 8-11 belongs to Period 1. Additional information on the destruction of Jerusalem. This scroll is sealed and the time span is 1290 days.

Vs 12-13 appears to belong to Period 2. The only reason we place it in period 2 is because we have a new time period 1335 days. Although there are no other sections about the Antichrist in this chapter, we will get it when we combine chapter 12 with sections of chapter 11.



Original text

We color-code the chiastic units of the original text (NIV) below for easy visual identification using: blue Period 1, green for Period 2, red Period 3.

We will also add in the last two periods we got from the reconfiguration of chapter 11 at the beginning.



Chapter 11
30b Then he will turn back and vent his fury against the holy covenant. 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. 37 He will show no regard for the gods of his ancestors or for the one desired by women, nor will he regard any god, but will exalt himself above them all. 38 Instead of them, he will honor a god of fortresses; a god unknown to his ancestors he will honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. 39 He will attack the mightiest fortresses with the help of a foreign god and will greatly honor those who acknowledge him. He will make them rulers over many people and will distribute the land at a price.

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.a “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.
1b 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. Build the reconfigured text

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

A1   11:30b,32-39 Period 2. Antichrist against the holy covenant (Christians)
  B1   11:31, 12:1a Period 1. End of sacrifice...abomination that causes desolation....great distress.
    X   12:1b-7 Period 3. Resurrection and judgement...time, times and half a time.
  B2   12:8-11 Period 1. Daily sacrifice stopped... 1290 days
A2   12:12-13 Period 2. Blessed is the one who reaaches the end of 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 functional chiasmus [1].

We lead with the central pivot point 'X'.. The corresponding subunits (For example; subunit A1 corresponds to A2) are placed contiguously to form units (For example, 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:

12:1b-7  [[11:30b, 32-39], 12:12-13]  [[11:31, 12:1a], 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 3 The "End of the Age" or the last days (circa 3000AD) (Vs 12:1b-7)

1b 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.”


Period 2 The Reign of the Antichrist (circa 2000AD) (Vs. 11:30b,32-39, 12:12-13)

Chapter 11
30b Then he will turn back and vent his fury against the holy covenant. 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. 37 He will show no regard for the gods of his ancestors or for the one desired by women, nor will he regard any god, but will exalt himself above them all. 38 Instead of them, he will honor a god of fortresses; a god unknown to his ancestors he will honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. 39 He will attack the mightiest fortresses with the help of a foreign god and will greatly honor those who acknowledge him. He will make them rulers over many people and will distribute the land at a price.

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 1 The First Jewish–Roman War (circa 66AD–74AD) (Vs. 11:31, 12:1a, 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.a “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.

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. An exegesis of the reconfigured text.

A discussion of each period of the reconfigured text.

5.1 Period 3 The "End of the Age" or the last days (circa 3000AD) (Vs 12:1b-7)

1b 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.”


A description of the final resurrection and judgement. The righteous will get their reward and the unrighteous their punishment.



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.”


We take the period of "time, times and half a time" to be 3 1/2 millennia or 3500 years. We take this to be period between the time this prophecy was given (Daniel 11:1,2), around the time of Cyrus the Great c.550BC, and the "End of the Age". Adding 3500 years to c 500BC gets us to 3000AD, the time of the resurrection and judgement. (All times are approximate, rounded down to the nearest century. In this case, as we have seen from our parse of the Olivet Discourse, nobody knows the day or the hour.). The phrase "power of the holy people has been finally broken" may refer to the end of Christ's millennial reign on earth.



5.2 Period 2 The Reign of the Antichrist (circa 2000AD) (Vs. 11:30b,32-39, 12:12-13)

Chapter 11

30b [He will] vent his fury against the holy covenant. 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.


Since this is the time of the Antichrist, the only relevant holy covenant extant is the Christian covenant or Christianity. The Antichrist will do everything he can to destroy Chrstianity and try to tempt faithful Christians away from God with earthly riches and power.



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.


There will be times of tribulations during the reign of the Antichrist. Those who stray from Christianity will be rewarded by the Antichrist and the unfaithful will be corrupted. Those who suffer patiently will have their character improved and worthy of their heavenly rewards.



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 have total control of the world but only for a short period. He will blaspheme against God and place himself above God.



37 He will show no regard for the gods of his ancestors or for the one desired by women, nor will he regard any god, but will exalt himself above them all. 38 Instead of them, he will honor a god of fortresses; a god unknown to his ancestors he will honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. 39 He will attack the mightiest fortresses with the help of a foreign god and will greatly honor those who acknowledge him. He will make them rulers over many people and will distribute the land at a price.


The Antichrist will worship a pagan Satanic God. Those who worship him will be rewarded with wealth and power.



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.”


The Antichrist will be given power to reign for a period of 42 months (Rev. 13:5) or about 1260 days. We believe the 1335 days is a reference to this period but since this is a future event we will not speculate on the extra 75 days. The end of the Antichrist's reign of 3 1/2 years (Daniel 7:25) should be around the time of the start of Christ's millennial reign on earth.

Note that in the case of this section of the prophecy, there is no command to "seal the scroll" perhaps because we have a command to "seal up the vision" in Daniel 8:26 for a prophecy about this period of the AntiChrist's reign.



5.3 Period 1 The First Jewish–Roman War (circa 66AD–74AD) (Vs. 11:31, 12:1a, 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.


In the middle of the First Jewish–Roman War (circa 66AD–74AD) in 70AD, the Romans destroy Jerusalem and its temple. The abomination that causes desolation is the Roman Army that completely extirpates Jerusalem. See more details on this period in our paper on the "70 weeks of Daniel".



Chapter 12

1a “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.

Michael, the protector of the Judahites, will stand by (and not stand up as it is usually translated) and let it happen. The kind of absolute destruction of Jerusalem and its people by the Romans has never been seen before.



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.


The Judahites are warned to escape to the mountains as soon as they see the abomination of desolation in Jerusalem. This happens in the middle of the 7 year period - so the war would last another 3 1/2 years. We believe that 1290 days here is a reference to that period. In our paper on Rev. 12, we see that the woman was in the wilderness for 1260 days. We believe that the 1290 days here is a reference to that period but that period may be 30 days less because the period of hiding may have been slightly shorter than the length of the Roman attack.



Conclusion

The main idea this paper introduces is a chiastic reconstruction of the text that shows that the passage contains three interwoven prophetic passages. We hope that we have shown that this allows a far more coherent and straightforward interpretation of this passage.

Once again we see the destruction of Jerusalem in 70AD highlighted in a chiastic parse because it represents the complete end of the old covenant.

We have three periods predicted here but the one we have not seen before is the approximate date of the "end of the times" when we have the resurrection and Judgement.



References

[1] A Definition of Functional Chiasmus - by Kuruvilla Thomas K.
[2] An Exegesis Of "The 70 Weeks Of Daniel" Based On A Novel Chiastic Reconfiguration - by Kuruvilla Thomas K.
[3] First Jewish–Roman War (66–73 CE) by Wikipedia.




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