Book of Daniel
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The Book of Daniel is one of the books of the Hebrew Bible and the Christian Old Testament. It is notable for its changes from Hebrew to Aramaic and back. The first part of the book, comprising six chapters, is the story of Daniel set in the courts of Babylonian and Achaemenid Empire during the time of the Babylonian captivity. The remainder of the book contain three visions and their interpretation.
There are differences between the fundamentalist view of Daniel and the scholarly consensus. Conservative Biblical scholars and evangelical commentators hold that its stories tell of real events and real prophecies written during and shortly after the Babylonian captivity by a real Daniel living in the late sixth century BCE. The scholarly consensus is that the Book of Daniel (or at least the last three chapters) was written after Antiochus IV Epiphanes desecrated the altar of the Temple of Jerusalem around 167 BCE. In this view, Daniel was written in reaction to that incident and the final redaction of the work dates to the second century BCE. For secular scholars, the issue was settled over a century ago, but many Christians do not accept this line of reasoning, looking to Jesus' implicit approval of the book by quoting from it in his teachings.
|Chapters of the Book of Daniel|
1: Induction into Babylon
Captives in Babylon
The story begins with a brief reference to king Nebuchadnezzar robbing the Jerusalem temple and carrying its treasures back to Babylon. It goes on to describe how some young members of the Judean nobility, including Daniel and his three companions, are inducted into the king's service. Daniel and his companions are given Babylonian names, but refuse to be 'defiled' by the royal provisions of food and wine. Their overseer fears for his life in case the health of his charges deteriorates, but Daniel suggests a ten-day trial on a simple diet of vegetables and water. When they miraculously emerge healthier than their counterparts, Daniel and his friends are allowed to continue with their diet. At the end of the induction period, the king finds them 'ten times better' than all the wise men in his service, and it is noted that Daniel has a particular gift for dream interpretation.
Nebuchadnezzar II has a disturbing dream and asks his wise men to interpret it, but refuses to divulge its content. When they protest he sentences all of them, including Daniel and his friends, to death. Daniel intervenes and asks for a temporary stay of execution so that he can petition his God for a solution. He receives an explanatory vision in the night, and then relays the content and meaning of the king's dream the following day. Nebuchadnezzar has dreamed of an enormous idol made of four metals, with feet of mixed iron and clay. The image is completely destroyed by a rock that turns into a huge mountain, filling the whole earth. The idol's composition of metals is interpreted as a series of successive kingdoms, starting with Nebuchadnezzar. Finally all of these dominions are crushed by God's kingdom, a kingdom that will "endure forever".
The fiery furnace
Daniel's companions Ananias (Hananiah/Shadrach), Azariah (Abednego), and Mishael (Meshach) refuse to bow to the emperor's golden statue and are thrown into a furnace. Nebuchadnezzar sees a fourth figure appear in the furnace with the three and God is credited for preserving them from the flames.
Nebuchadnezzar recounts a dream of a huge tree that is suddenly cut down at the command of a heavenly messenger. Daniel is summoned and interprets the dream. The tree is Nebuchadnezzar himself, who for seven years will lose his mind and live like a wild beast. All of this comes to pass until, at the end of the specified time, Nebuchadnezzar acknowledges that "heaven rules" and his kingdom and sanity are restored.
Belshazzar and his nobles blasphemously drink from sacred Jewish temple vessels, offering praise to inanimate gods, until a hand mysteriously appears and writes upon the wall of the palace. The horrified king eventually summons Daniel who is able to read the writing and offer the following interpretation: Mene, Mene - God has numbered the days of your reign and brought it to an end. Tekel - You have been weighed on the scales and found wanting. Upharsin - Your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians. "That very night", we are informed, Belshazzar was slain and "Darius the Mede" took over the kingdom.
Daniel in the lions' den
Daniel is elevated to a pre-eminent position under Darius which elicits the jealousy of other officials. Knowing of Daniel's devotion to his God, these officials trick the king into issuing an edict forbidding worship of any other god or man for a 30 day period. Because Daniel continues to pray three times a day to God towards Jerusalem, he is accused and King Darius, forced by his own decree, throws Daniel into the lions' den. God shuts up the mouths of the lions and the next morning king Darius finds Daniel unharmed and casts his accusers and their families into the lions' pit where they are instantly devoured.
Vision of the great beasts
The vision in the first year of Belshazzar the king of Babylon (7:1) concerning four great beasts (7:3) representing four future kings (7:17) or kingdoms (7:23), the fourth of which devours the whole earth, treading it down and crushing it (7:23). This fourth beast has ten horns representing ten kings. They are followed by a further wicked king, or "little horn", who subdues three of the ten (7:24), speaks against the Most High, wages war against the saints, and attempts to change the set times and laws (7:25); after 'a time and times and half a time', this king is judged and stripped of his kingdom by an "Ancient of Days" and his heavenly court (7:26); next, "one like a son of man" approaches the Ancient of Days and is invested with worldwide dominion; moreover, his everlasting reign over all kings and kingdoms is shared with "the people of the Most High" (7:27)
Vision of the ram and goat
The vision in the third year of Belshazzar concerns symbolic objects from the ancient Hebrew tabernacle, such as sacrificial ram and goat (8:1-27) which, according to the text, represent Medea, Persia (the ram's two horns), and Greece (the goat). The goat with the mighty horn, or shofar (horn trumpet), becomes very powerful until the horn breaks off and is replaced by four "lesser" horns. The vision then focuses on a small shofar horn that grows very large, a wicked king who arises to challenge the "army of the Lord" by removing the daily temple sacrifice and desecrating the sanctuary for a period of "twenty three hundred evening/mornings". The vision culminates in the "cleansing" or reconsecration of the sanctuary.
Prophecy of the Seventy Septets
The vision in first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus (9:1) concerning seventy weeks, or seventy "sevens", apportioned for the history of the Israelites and of Jerusalem (9:24) This consists of a meditation on the prediction in Jeremiah that the desolation of Jerusalem would last seventy years, a lengthy prayer by Daniel in which he pleads for God to restore Jerusalem and its temple, and an angelic explanation which focuses on a longer time period - "seventy sevens" - and a future restoration and destruction of city and temple by a coming ruler.
Vision of the kings of north and south
Daniel has a lengthy vision (10:1 - 12:13) in the third year of Cyrus king of Persia, around 536 BCE, regarding conflicts between the "King of the North" and the "King of the South" (= Egypt, 11:8). An angel appears to Daniel and explains that the demonic "prince of Persia" is in opposition, but that Michael "the great prince of Israel" will save them, as the only one who will "stand up."(10:21; 12:1) The vision is for "the final part of the days."(10:13,14) Starting with references to Persia and Greece it, again, culminates in the description of an arrogant king who desecrates the temple, sets up a "desolating abomination", removes the daily sacrifice, and persecutes those who remain true to the "holy covenant".
The visions of Daniel, with those of 1 Enoch, Isaiah, Jubilees, Jeremiah and Ezekiel, are the inspiration for much of the apocalyptic ideology and symbolism of the Qumran community's Dead Sea scrolls and the early literature of Christianity.
There are three main versions of the Book of Daniel; a twelve-chapter version preserved in the Masoretic Text and two longer Greek versions (the original Septuagint version, c. 100 BCE, and the later Theodotion version, c. 2nd century CE). Both the Greek versions contain chapters that are not found in the Masoretic Text.
Theodotion's translation is much closer to the Masoretic Text and became so popular that it replaced the original Septuagint version of Daniel in all but two manuscripts of the Septuagint itself.
Three additional narratives are preserved in the Septuagint and the Theodotion versions, and are considered apocryphal by Protestant Christians and Jews, and deuterocanonical by Catholic and Orthodox Christians. These additions to Daniel are The Prayer of Azariah and Song of the Three Holy Children, the stories of Susannah and the Elders and Bel and the Dragon.
Dead Sea Scrolls
A total of eight fragmentary copies of the Book of Daniel have been found at Qumran: two in Cave 1, five in Cave 4, and one in Cave 6. None is complete due to degradation, but between them, they preserve text from eleven of Daniel’s twelve chapters. The twelfth chapter is found in the Florilegium 4Q174. All eight manuscripts were copied within 175 years, ranging from 125 BCE (4QDanc) to about 50 CE (4QDanb).
Seven of the eight scrolls originally contained the entire book of Daniel in the short form as it is in the Masoretic Text, however none have the long form as preserved in the Septuagint. All eight scrolls do not reveal any major disagreements against the Masoretic Text, although James C. VanderKam observes that 1QDana is closest to the traditional text.
The four scrolls that preserve the relevant sections (1QDana, 4QDana, 4QDanb, and 4QDand) all follow the same bilingual nature of Daniel where the book opens in Hebrew, switches to Aramaic at 2:4b, then reverts to Hebrew at 8:1.
Chiastic structure or concentric structure is a common feature of ancient Hebrew poetry and literature. Attempts have been made to organize the entire book of Daniel with a single chiastic structure despite the major break between Daniel 6 and 7, even though there are parallel themes across that break.
Aramaic chiastic form
A. Lenglet proposed a chiastic language structure for the Aramaic portion of chapters 2 through 7 in 1972. Then in 1978, Joyce G. Baldwin, former principal of Trinity College, Bristol, proposed her view of the chiastic language structure for the Aramaic portion of Daniel chapters 2-7.
- A. Four empires and God's coming kingdom.(ch.2)
- B. Trial by fire and God's deliverance.(ch.3)
- C. A king warned, chastised and delivered.(ch.4)
- C'. A king warned, defiant and deposed.(ch.5)
- B'. Trial in the lions' den and God's deliverance.(ch.6)
- B. Trial by fire and God's deliverance.(ch.3)
- A'. Four empires and God's everlasting kingdom.(ch.7)
In 1986, William H. Shea, proposed that Daniel is composed of a double chiasm. He supports that the chiastic structure is emphasized by the languages in which the book is written. The first chiasm is written in Aramaic and the second in Hebrew which explains why Aramaic continues to be used in chapter 7 rather than ending in chapter 6. Those who follow the chiastic language structure, view chapter 7 as the end of the first half of the book.
- Parallel themes share common label
The sections labeled A, A', A" and A"' are placed in parallel because they all have a similar theme: prophecies about successive kingdoms. God's people suffer trials in all 4 parts labelled B, B', B" and B"'. Sections C, C', C" and C"' deal with prophecies about the actions of different kings. Finally the structure portrays the trial faced by the Anointed One as the focal point of the book (D).
- Structure has precedence over chronology
Six narrative chapters are fit into the structure rather than chronology defining the structure. In chronological the chapter are 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 6, 8, 5, 9, 10, 11, & 12. Chapter 6 (B') is put in parallel with chapter 3 (B) because they both deal with the persecution of Daniel and his friends i.e. "God's people." And chapter 5 (C') is put in parallel with chapter 4 (C) where divine judgments are pronounced against the Babylonian kings.
- Grouping emphasizes prophecies
This chiastic grouping of chapters having the same theme has implications when it comes to the chapters containing prophecies (A, A', A", A'"). Not only are they parallel because they contain prophecies, but the prophecies themselves are parallel to each other, which has been recognized for millennia. Christian commentators have not always identified the same kingdoms in each chapter though. Chapters 2 and 7 have generally - though not exclusively - been interpreted as extending to Roman times. Chapters 8 and 11 have been applied to the time of Antiochus Epiphanes. Historicists interpret all four prophecies as extending from Daniel's time, past the present to a future Kingdom of God.
Others like Walton have advocated a combination of both schemes, but in different parts of Daniel.
Authorship and dating
For nearly two millennia, the principal view of both Jewish and Christian scholars has been that the book of Daniel was written by Daniel during the sixth century BCE, considering it as containing prophecy of western political history and an eschatological future. However, since the Age of Enlightenment, critical scholarship of the Bible, taking a cue from third century pagan critic Porphyry, views the Book of Daniel as a pseudepigraph dated around 165 BCE that concerns itself primarily with the Maccabean era and the reign of the Seleucid king Antiochus Epiphanes. Although the book had been historically classified as prophetic, the style of writing is now considered apocalyptic which was popular between 200 BCE and 100 CE.
Those who share this view typically adhere to the Maccabean thesis when analyzing the Book of Daniel. The stories of chapters 1-6 are considered to be a literary genre of legends that are older than the visions of chapters 7-12. The visions in the latter half of Daniel are proposed to have been written by an anonymous author in the Maccabean era who assembled the legends with the visions as one book in the 2nd century BCE. According to this view the critical focus is on the witness to the religiosity of the Maccabean time period.
In 1965, Norman Porteous postulated that an anonymous writer wrote the book during the persecution under Antiochus. According to this theory the anonymous author attributed events that were witnessed by this writer in the 2nd century BCE to Daniel as prophecies. Paul Roche claimed that the author abounded in mistakes and anachronisms, and rather used Daniel as a symbol for the faithful Jew serving Yahweh, along with the use of various pagan kings as symbols of heathenism. Critics acknowledge that the author of Daniel was familiar with the history of Near Eastern imperial power from the sixth to the second centuries but the writer's incomplete and erroneous view of historical details in the second half of the sixth century, Daniel’s era, support the theory of a late date of writing.
Porteous and Roche argue that the Book of Daniel is composed of folktales that were used to fortify the Jewish faith during a time of great persecution and oppression by the Seleucids some four centuries after the Babylonian captivity. Accodingly, the visions describe the national crisis that occurred under Antiochus IV Epiphanes, a Seleucid king who persecuted and slaughtered thousands of observant Jews, polluted the Jerusalem temple, and tried to replace traditional customs with Hellenistic religious practices. James VanderKam and Peter W. Flint further explain that the stories of Daniel and his friends, set in Babylon during the Exile, encouraged readers to remain faithful to God and to refuse compromise in the face of their oppressors, and offered the prospect of triumph over wickedness and idolatry. These themes may have brought encouragement to the Qumran covenanters who were persecuted by other Jews and also threatened by Hellenization.
The discovery of the scroll 4QDanc (dating 125 BCE) at Qumran does not reassure critics that Daniel was written in the 2nd century BCE. G. R. Driver stated that "the presence and popularity of the Daniel manuscripts at Qumran" conflicted "with the modern view which advocates the late dating of the composition of Daniel". [Wegner, 116][need quotation to verify][clarification needed]
Scholars have tried to analyze the bilingual literary structure of Daniel - Chapters 2 through 7 in Biblical Aramaic, the rest in Biblical Hebrew. One of the most frequent speculations is that the entire book (excepting 9:4-20) was originally written in Aramaic, with portions translated into Hebrew, possibly to increase acceptance - many Aramaisms in the Hebrew text find proposed explanation by the hypothesis of an inexact initial translation into Hebrew.
According to John J. Collins the Aramaic in Daniel is of a later form than that used in the Samaria correspondence, but slightly earlier than the form used in the Dead Sea Scrolls, meaning that the Aramaic chapters 2-6 may have been written earlier in the Hellenistic period than the rest of the book, with the vision in chapter 7 being the only Aramaic portion dating to the time of Antiochus. The Hebrew portion is, for all intents and purposes, identical to that found in the Dead Sea Scrolls, meaning chapters 1 and 8-12 were in existence before the late 2nd century BCE.
The Expositor's Bible Commentary (Zondervan, 1990) says that the language of Daniel, in comparison with the Hebrew and Aramaic texts of the Hellenistic period, "prove quite conclusively to any scholar that the second-century date and Palestinian provenance of the Book of Daniel cannot be upheld any longer without violence being done to the science of linguistics." It adds that the serious mistakes of the Septuagint to render many Persian and Accadian terms, as the offices mentioned in Dan. 3:3, proves ignorance of words of the old past, already forgotten in the Hellenistic period, indicating that the Book of Daniel was written in the late 6th century BCE.
E.C. Lucas is more cautious in his assessment of linguistic arguments as well. Evaluating Collins' approach, he considers "the wide geographical spread from which the material comes and the implicit assumption that linguistic developments would have occurred uniformly throughout this area" a weakness and concludes, "The character of the Hebrew and Aramaic could support a date in the fifth or fourth century for the extant written form of the book, but does not demand a second-century date." He agrees with Collins that there are "clear differences" between Qumran Hebrew and the Hebrew of Daniel.
At least one theologian suggests that there is theological significance for the varying linguistic usage found in the text of Daniel. These scholars suggest that chapters 2-7 are written in Aramaic specifically to appeal to the Babylonian audience. The content of chapters 2-7 contain YHWH's prophetic plan for the world. The content of Chapters 8-12 are written in Hebrew to appeal to the Jewish audience. These later chapters contain YHWH's prophetic plan for Israel. Thus, the use of language serves as a mode of theological transport, allowing the text of the Book of Daniel to address theological issues to two diverse people groups living interwoven in the Ancient Near Eastern world.
Three Greek musical terms occur in Daniel chapter 3. All three loanwords are the musical instruments: κιθαρις (cithara), ψαλτηριον (psaltery) and συμφωνια (symphonia). The presence of three Greek loanwords that occur in Daniel chapter 3 are suggestive that Daniel was written after Alexander the Great’s conquest of the Orient, from 330 BCE, as it would be difficult for Greek loanwords to appear two centuries before then.
The earliest known use of the Greek word symphonia, dates back to Pythagoras, born in the 6th century BCE, who has used the term. The adjectival use of symphonia meaning, "in unison", is found in the Hymni Homerica, ad Mercurium 51; both instances date from the 6th century BCE. Frank Gaebelein observes that "Greek mercenaries and slaves served in the Babylonian and Assyrian periods, some of whom were undoubtedly versed in Greek music and musical instruments."
There are about nineteen Persian loanwords that occur in the Aramaic portions of the Book of Daniel. Kenneth Kitchen, Louis F. Hartman and Alexander Di Lella date the Aramaic portion more broadly within the Persian period (i.e., before the 330s BCE) based on these Persian loanwords.
The Persians used Aramaic in their administrative control of the empire. Accordingly, their own Persian language influenced Aramaic. Such influence has caused Aramaic to have many Persian loanwords that can be seen in later historical texts. Since Daniel was a statesman during the Persian conquests, the Book of Daniel could have been written in a period when the Persians had their greatest influence on Aramaic, believed to be in the mid 6th century BCE.
Four of the nineteen Persian words in the book of Daniel were poorly translated by the Greek renderings of about 100 B.C. (the Septuagint)—sixty-five years after Judas Maccabeus—implying that their meaning was lost or drastically changed. It is difficult to explain how within five or six decades after Daniel was composed (according to the Maccabean date hypothesis) the meaning of these terms could have been so completely forgotten even by the Jews in Egypt, who remained quite conversant in Aramaic as well as in Greek.
Use of Chaldean
The Book of Daniel uses the term "Chaldean" to refer both to an ethnic group and to astrologers in general. According to Montgomery and Raymond Hammer the Book of Daniel's use of the word "Chaldean" to refer to astrologers in general is an anachronism, as during the Neo-Babylonian and early Persian periods (when Daniel is said to have lived), it referred only to an ethnicity.
Other scholars have argued that the use of Chaldean in this context is not problematic:
- "This theory, however, fails to fit the data of the text, for the author of this work was certainly aware that Kasdim was the ethnic term for the race of Nebuchadnezzar. Thus in Daniel 5:30 Belshazzar is referred to as the king of the Chaldeans; in this case the term certainly could not refer to any class of wise men. Therefore, we must look to other explanations for the twofold use of Kasdim. Herodotus (vol. 1, sec 181-183) refers to the Chaldeans in such a way as to imply that they were speedily put into all the politically strategic offices of Babylonia as soon as they had gained control of the capital. If this was the case, then "Chaldean" may have early come into use as a term for the priests of Bel-Marduk."
- "Since Nebuchadnezzar was a Chaldean by race the ethnic use of the term in the book of Daniel is not surprising; its use by Herodotus as a technical term for the priests of Bel in the fifth century B.C. shows it had already by then a secondary sense. There is nothing incongruous about the use of the term in both meanings, nor need it cause confusion, any more than our use in English of the word 'Morocco' to designate both the country and the leather for which it is famous. Needless to say the Moroccan would not use the name in both these senses."
Siege of Jerusalem
The opening verses of the Book of Daniel describe Nebuchadnezzar besieging Jerusalem "in the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim" (606/5 BCE). This is eight years before the capture of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar II on 2 Adar (16 March) 597 BCE recorded in the Babylonian Chronicles and 2 Kings 24:8-17.
The Babylonian Chronicle does record that in 605 Nebuchadnezzar, crown-prince of Babylon, met the Egyptian army in battle at Carchemish and then proceeded to conquer the surrounding area. Jehoiakim was vassal to Pharaoh Necho (2 Kings 23:34) so Nebuchadnezzar would have wanted to either replace Jehoiakim or secure his loyalty. 2 Kings 24:1 confirms that Nebuchadnezzar "came up" against Jehoiakim, after which Jehoiakim became his vassal. That Nebuchadnezzar took captives from the Jews after his victory at Carchemish is confirmed by the Babylonian historian Berosus (Berosus, quoted Josephus, Against Apion 1.15).
Nebuchadnezzar or Nabonidus
Three Aramaic Dead Sea Scrolls fragments known as The Prayer of Nabonidus (4QPrNab, sometimes given as 4QOrNab) describe a Babylonian king (spelled N-b-n-y) who is afflicted by God with an "evil disease" for a period of seven years. He is cured and his sins forgiven after the intervention of a Jewish exile who is described as a "diviner"; he issues a written proclamation in praise of the Most High God, and speaks in the first person.
These fragments turned up in a collection of Dead Sea Scrolls possessed by the Jordanian Government, and were first published by Milik in 1956. Long before this, scholars had speculated that Nabonidus' exile in Teima lay behind the story of Nebuchadnezzar's banishment and madness in Daniel chapter four.
The general consensus of scholars is that Daniel chapter four ultimately draws upon the traditions and legends of Nabonidus, while others feel that the Prayer of Nabonidus shows signs of dependence on the Book of Daniel. Matthias Henze even suggests that the narrative of Nebuchadnezzar's madness draws on the Mesopotamian Epic of Gilgamesh. He argues that the author of Daniel uses elements from the description of the wild man Enkidu, who roams the steppe with the animals.
Historicity of Belshazzar
New evidence from Babylon has verified the existence of Belshazzar, the name first given in Daniel 5:1, as well as his co-regency during the absence of his father, Nabonidus, in Temâ. However, there is no evidence that Belshazzar ever officially held the title of "king" as he is never called such on the Nabonidus Cylinder. On that cylinder, Nabonidus petitions the god Sin as follows:
- "And as for Belshazzar my firstborn son, my own child, let the fear of your great divinity be in his heart, and may he commit no sin; may he enjoy happiness in life". In addition, The Verse Account of Nabonidus (British Museum tablet 38299) states, "[Nabonidus] entrusted the army (?) to his oldest son, his first born, the troops in the country he ordered under his command. He let everything go, entrusted the kingship (Akk. šarrûtu) to him, and, himself, he started out for a long journey. The military forces of Akkad marching with him, he turned to Temâ deep in the west" (Col. II, lines 18 - 29. 18).
In line with the statement that Nabonidus "entrusted the kingship" to Belshazzar in his absence, there is evidence that Belshazzar's name was used with his father's in oath formulas, that he was able to pass edicts, lease farmlands, and receive the "royal privilege" to eat the food offered to the gods.
Historicity of Darius the Mede
The conqueror of Babylon was Gobryas, governor of Gutium, a general of Cyrus, king of Persia. No such person as Darius the Mede is recorded in known history. The successor of Cyrus as king of Persia was named Darius the Great. The author of Daniel inherited a schema of four kingdoms in which Media preceded Persia. John J. Collins suggests that it is highly probable that Daniel created the figure of Darius the Mede to fit this schema.
Similar to the traditional view in Judaism, conservative Christians[who?] view the Book of Daniel as written by the prophet Daniel, who they claim wrote the book around 536 BCE after having been in captivity for about 70 years. Conservative interpretations[by whom?] hold that Daniel predicted the empires of Babylonia and Persia to be succeeded by the Greeks under Alexander the Great. Daniel also foresees the Greek Empire being divided among the four generals upon the death of Alexander. Daniel then predicts that the Jewish people would suffer great persecution under an official who would come to power after Alexander’s death. Many interpreters identify this ruler as Antiochus Epiphanes, the Greek ruler of Syria. In history, Antiochus persecuted the Jews unmercifully from 176 to 164 BCE, which led to the Maccabean revolt of 167 BCE.
In the Book of Matthew 24:15, of the New Testament, Jesus references Daniel, "When, therefore, you see the abomination of desolation, which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand)". In the Hebrew portion of Daniel chapters 8-12, Daniel speaks of this abomination of desolation in the last two chapters.
The various episodes in the first half of the book are understood by Christians to foreshadow events in the gospels. The apocalyptic section is important to Christians for the image of the "one like a son of Man" (Dan. 7:13), and Jesus is presented using the same wording in the Book of Revelation in 1:13-15. The connection with Daniel's vision (as opposed to the usage in the Book of Ezekiel) is made explicit in the Gospels of Matthew and Mark (Matt. 26:64; Mark 14:62). According to the gospels, Jesus used the title "Son of Man" as his preferred name for himself (Matt. 26:64; Mark 14:62). Christians sometimes see this as a claim by Jesus that he is the Messiah. According to the New American Bible and some Christian theologians, "one like a son of man" represents "the saints of the Most High" as interpreted in the vision later (Dan 7:16-18, 21-22, 25-27) and Jesus made the title "Son of Man" a distinguishing self-reference. Later Jewish interpreters interpreted this figure as the Jewish messiah. Such interpretation appears in the apocryphal Similitudes of Enoch and 4 Ezra.
In the Olivet Discourse (Mark 13:14, Matt. 24:15) Jesus applies Daniel's prophecy of a desolating sacrilege set up in the temple (Dan. 9:27, 11:31) to a future event, the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE. According to Jesus' words, this event would involve the leveling of the temple, flight from Judea, and would happen in Jesus' own generation (Mark 13: 2-4, 14, 30). Many Christians today view this as a prophetic allusion to a final tribulation immediately preceding Judgement Day. Some consider the Prophecy of Seventy Weeks to be particularly compelling due to what they interpret to be prophetic accuracy.
According to some scholars, Dan. 12:2 is the earliest clear reference in the Hebrew Scriptures to the resurrection of the dead, with many "countrymen" awakening from death, some to eternal life and some to eternal disgrace. This belief is also expressed in 2 Maccabees and is linked, as in Daniel, with the idea of divine retribution.
- Christian eschatology
- Biblical numerology
- Danel - Ugaritic hero identified with Daniel in Ezekiel (Ezek. 14:14-20) (Ezek. 28:3)
- Old English poem Daniel
- Greek Apocalypse of Daniel
- Collins 2001, p. 2.
- Ronald F. Youngblood (1995-08-15). Nelson's new illustrated Bible dictionary. general editor, Ronald F. Youngblood ; consulting editors, F.F. Bruce, R.K. Harrison (null ed.). Nashville: T. Nelson. pp. 326–327. ISBN 978-0-8407-2071-9.
- Eisenman (1997), p. 19f. "Daniel's clear association with the Maccabean Uprising and those against Rome are a possible factor in the eventual downgrading of it, to include a redefinition of the role of prophet, keeping in mind that at roughly this time the Hebrew canon was being evaluated and adopted."
- Eerdmans dictionary of the Bible By David Noel Freedman, Allen C. Myers, Astrid B. Beck
- "Susannah and the Elders". The Walters Art Museum.
- Invitation to the Apocrypha By Daniel J. Harrington
- Deuterocanonicals/Apocrypha By Watson E. Mills, Richard F. Wilson
- Eerdmans commentary on the Bible By James D. G. Dunn, John William Rogerson
- Collins, John Joseph, "Daniel: with an introduction to apocalyptic literature" (Eerdmans. 1984) p.28
- Evans, Craig A.; Flint, Peter W. (1997). Eschatology, messianism, and the Dead Sea scrolls. Grand Rapids, Mich.: W.B. Eerdmans. ISBN 978-0-8028-4230-5.
- VanderKam 2002, p. 137
- VanderKam 2002, p. 138
- editor, J. Daniel Hays ; Tremper Longman III, general (2010). Message of the prophets : a survey of the prophetic and apocalyptic books of the Old Testament. [Grand Rapids, Mich.]: Zondervan. p. 236. ISBN 978-0-310-27152-9.
- Baldwin 1978, pp. 499–500
- Shea 1986
- Casey 1980
- Ford 1978 Ford speaks of 'the almost universal application of [the little horn symbol of chapter 8] to Antiochus Epiphanes'. He also quotes the pre-critical and post-counter reformation view of the Anglican Bishop Thomas Newton in his "Dissertation on the Prophecies..." originally published in the mid-1700s (JF Dove,1838, p247): 'This little horn [of Daniel 8] is by the generality of interpreters, both Jewish and Christian, ancient and modern, supposed to mean Antiochus Epiphanes.' Newton adds that 'most of the ancient fathers and modern divines and commentators' agree with Jerome in identifying Antiochus in chapter 8, while also allowing that "Antiochus Epiphan es was a type of Antichrist".
- See historicist interpretation below
- "The Four Kingdoms Of Daniel" by John H. Walton, Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 29.1 (1986): 25-36.
- Longman III & Dillard 2006b, p. 373, "The predominant opinion of both Jewish and Christian scholars was that the book of Daniel was written by Daniel, a statesmen and prophet, who flourished during the sixth century BC."
- Longman III & Dillard 2006, p. 373.
- Youngblood, Ronald F., ed. (1995). Nelson's new illustrated Bible dictionary. Nashville: T. Nelson. p. 328. ISBN 0-8407-2071-8.
- Senior, Donald; Mary Ann Getty, Carroll Stuhlmueller, John J. Collins (1990). The Catholic Study Bible. New York City: Oxford University Press. p. 1086. ISBN 0-19-528277-9. Collins, 2002, p.2
- Miller 1994, p. 94.
- Redditt, Paul L. (1999). Daniel: based on the New Revised Standard Version. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press. p. 102. ISBN 978-1-84127-009-8.
- eds, Tremper Longman III & David E. Garland, general (2009). Daniel-Malachi (Rev. ed.). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan. p. 115. ISBN 978-0-310-26893-2.
- Roche, Paul (2001). The Bible's greatest stories. New York: New American Library. p. 342. ISBN 978-0-451-52821-6.
- Tyndale 2001, p. 352
- Porteous, Norman W. (1965). Daniel : a commentary. Philadelphia: Westminster Press. p. 88. ISBN 978-0-664-22317-5.
- Hartman and Di Lella, (1990), 408.
- Daniel, Hermeneia Commentary
- "There is no possibility that the text of Daniel could have been composed as late as the Maccabean uprising, and that there is every likelihood that the Aramaic comes from the same period, if not a century earlier, than the Aramaic of the Elephantine Papyri and of Ezra, which are admittedly fifth-century productions. It goes without saying that if the predictions concerning the period of Antiochus III and Antiochus IV (222-164 BC) are composed in language antedating the second-century and third-century B.C., then the whole effort to explain Daniel as a vaticinium ex eventu must be abandoned."
- E.C. Lucas, Daniel (Apollos OT Commentary; Apollos, 2002) p. 307.
- Godwin 1987
- Stimilli 2005
- Frank E. Gaebelein, The Expositor's Bible Commentary, Vol. 7, Zondervan, 1985, p. 21.
- John E. Goldingay, Daniel, (Word Biblical Commentary, 30; Dallas: Word Books, 1989), p. xxv.
- Lella, a new translation with notes and commentary on chapters 1-9 by Louis F. Hartman. Introd., and commentary on chapters 10-12 by Alexander Di Lella (1983). The Book of Daniel (1. ed. 3. print. ed.). New York [u.a.]: Doubleday. p. 197. ISBN 978-0-385-01322-2.
- Kitchen, K.A. (1965). "The Aramaic of Daniel". In Wiseman, D. J. Notes on Some Problems in the Book of Daniel. London: The Tyndale Press. pp. 31–79 .
- Archer, Gleason. A Survey of the Old Testament Introduction. Chicago: Moody Press, 1974.
- Baldwin, Joyce G. Daniel. Downers Grove: Intervarsity Press, 1978.
- D. J. Wiseman, Chronicles of Chaldean Kings in the British Museum (London: Trustees of the British Museum, 1956) 73.
- Gaston, Thomas (2009). Historical Issues in the Book of Daniel. Oxford: Taanathshiloh. pp. 20–36. ISBN 978-0-9561540-0-2.
- Lendering, Jona. "Cyrus takes Babylon: Daniel & Prayer of Nabonidus". self published. Retrieved 2010-06-21.
- Collins, 1994, p. 217-218
- Steinmann, A. (December 2002). "The Chicken and the Egg: A New Proposal for the Relationship between the "Prayer of Nabonidus" and the "Book of Daniel"". Revue de Qumran 20 (4): 557–570.
- Gaston 2009, pp. 47–52
- The Madness of King Nebuchadnezzar..., Leiden, Brill, 1999
- Horn, Siegfried H. (April 1978). "New Light on Nebuchadnezzar's Madness" (PDF). Ministry Magazine. pp. 38–40. Retrieved 2010-06-22.
- Gaston 2009, pp. 58–61
- Collins, John J. (1998). The apocalyptic imagination : an introduction to Jewish apocalyptic literature (2nd ed.). Grand Rapids, Mich. [u.a.]: Eerdmans. p. 86. ISBN 0-8028-4371-9.
- Law, George R. (2010). Identification of Darius the Mede. North Carolina: Ready Scribe Press. p. x. ISBN 978-0-9827631-0-0.
- Tyndale 2001, p. 350
- Steinberg 2009, pp. 52–3
- Parallel translations of Daniel 7:13
- Bromiley, Geoffrey W. (1995). International Standard Bible Encyclopedia: K-P Volume 3 of The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing. p. 800. ISBN 978-0-8028-3783-7
- Collins, John Joseph; Flint, Peter W.; VanEpps, Cameron. (2001). The book of Daniel : composition and receptio. Leiden ; Boston: Brill. p. 543. ISBN 978-90-04-12202-4.
- New American Bible
- Introducing the New Testament: its literature and theology, Paul J. Achtemeier, Joel B. Green, Marianne Meye Thompson
- An introduction to the New Testament and the origins of Christianity, Delbert Royce Burkett
- Reynolds, Benjamin E. (2008). The apocalyptic son of man in the gospel of John. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck. p. 43. ISBN 978-3-16-149726-1.
- Wright, N. T. (1992). Christian origins and the question of God. Minneapolis: Fortress Press. p. 316. ISBN 978-0-8006-2681-5.
- Craig Blomberg, Jesus and the Gospels, Apollos 1997, pp.322-326
- Wright, N. T. (1992). Christian origins and the question of God. Volume 2, Jesus and the victory of God. Minneapolis: Fortress Press. p. 352. ISBN 0-8006-2682-6.
- Hartman and Di Lel la, 1990, p. 419
- Encyclopedia of theology: the concise Sacramentum mundi, Karl Rahner
- 2 Macc. 7:14 : "And when he was now ready to die, he spoke thus: It is better, being put to death by men, to look for hope from God, to be raised up again by him; for, as to thee (Antiochus Epiphanes), thou shalt have no resurrection unto life".
- Baldwin, Joyce G. (1981). Donald J. Wiseman, ed. Daniel: an introduction and commentary. Downers Grove: Inter-Varsity Press. ISBN 978-0-87784-273-6.
- Bar, Shaul; Transl. by Lenn J. Schramm (2001). A letter that has not been read : dreams in the Hebrew Bible. Cincinnati: Hebrew Union College Press. pp. 205–216. ISBN 9780878204243.
- Boyer, Paul S. (1992). When Time Shall Be No More: Prophecy Belief in Modern American Culture (Google on-line books). Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. p. 488. ISBN 0-674-95129-8. Retrieved 2010-06-24.
- Briant, Pierre (1996). From Cyrus to Alexander. Librairie Artheme Fayard. Translation by Peter Daniels, 2002. Paris. p. 42. ISBN 1-57506-031-0.
- Brown, Raymond E.; Fitzmyer, Joseph A.; Murphy, Roland E., eds. (1999). The New Jerome Biblical Commentary. Prentice Hall. p. 1475. ISBN 0-13-859836-3.
- Carey, Greg (1999). Bloomquist, L. Gregory, ed. Vision and Persuasion: Rhetorical Dimensions of Apocalyptic Discourse (Google On-line Books). Chalice Press. p. 224. ISBN 0-8272-4005-8. Retrieved 2010-06-25.
- Casey, Maurice (1980). Son of Man: The interpretation and influence of Daniel 7. Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge. p. 272. ISBN 0-281-03697-7. "lists ten commentators of the 'Syrian Tradition' who identify the fourth beast of chapter 7 as Greece, the little horn as Antiochus, and - in the majority of instances - the "saints of the Most High" as Maccabean Jews."
- Cohn-Sherbok, Dan (1996). The Hebrew Bible (Google on-line books). Cassell. p. 257. ISBN 0-304-33703-X. Retrieved 2010-06-24.
- Collins, John Joseph (1994). Daniel: A Commentary on the Book of Daniel (Hermeneia: a Critical and Historical Commentary on the Bible). Augsburg Fortress Publishers. p. 499. ISBN 0-8006-6040-4.
- Collins, John J. (2001). "Current Issues in the Study of Daniel". In Collins, John J.; Flint, Peter W. The Book of Daniel, Composition & Reception 1. p. 2. ISBN 9789004116757.
- Colless, Brian (1992). "Cyrus the Persian as Darius the Mede in the Book of Daniel" (PDF). Journal for the Study of the Old Testament (subscription site) 56: 115. Retrieved 2010-06-12.
- Dougherty, Raymond Philip (1929). Nabonidus and Belshazzar: A Study of the Closing Events of the Neo- Babylonian Empire. Yale University Press. p. 216. ASIN B000M9MGX8.
- Easton's Bible Dictionary
- Eisenman, Robert (1998). James, the brother of Jesus : the key to unlocking the secrets of early Christianity and the Dead Sea Scrolls. New York: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-025773-X.
- Ford, Desmond (1978). Daniel. Southern Publishing Association. p. 309. ISBN 0-8127-0174-7.
- Goldingay, John (1989). Daniel (Word Biblical Themes) (Rich text format of book). Dallas: Word Publishing Group. p. 132. ISBN 0-8499-0794-2. Retrieved 2010-06-28.
- Grabbe, Lester L. (2008). "Chapter 16: Israel from the Rise of Hellenism to 70 CE" (Google On-line Books). In Rogerson, John William; Lieu, Judith. The Oxford handbook of biblical studies. USA: Oxford University Press. p. 920. ISBN 0-19-923777-8. Retrieved 2010-06-28.
- Godwin, compiled and translated by Kenneth Sylvan Guthrie ; with additional translations by Thomas Taylor and Arthur Fairbanks, Jr. ; introduced and edited by David R. Fideler ; with a foreword by Joscelyn (1987). The Pythagorean sourcebook and library : an anthology of ancient writings which relate to Pythagoras and Pythagorean philosophy ([New ed.] ed.). Grand Rapids: Phanes Press. ISBN 978-0-933999-51-0.
- Louis F. Hartman and Alexander A. Di Lella, "Daniel", in Raymond E. Brown et al., ed., The New Jerome Biblical Commentary, 1990, pp. 406–20.
- Hasel, Gerhard Franz (1977). "The First and Third Years of Belshazzar (Dan 7:1; 8:1)" (PDF). AUSS Journal Online Archive (Andrews University Seminary) 15: 153–168. Retrieved 2010-06-18.
- Hammer, Raymond, "The Book of Daniel" (Cambridge University Press, 1976)
- Hoppe, Leslie J. (1992). "Deuteronomy" (Google On-line Books). In Bergant, Dianne. The Collegeville Bible commentary: based on the New American Bible: Old Testament. Liturgical Press. p. 464. ISBN 0-8146-2211-9. Retrieved 2010-06-24.
- Keil, C. F.; Delitzsch, Franz (2006) . Ezekiel and Daniel. Commentary on the Old Testament 9. Hendrickson Publishers. ISBN 0-913573-88-4.
- Longman III, Tremper; Dillard, Raymond B. (2006) . An Introduction to the Old Testament (2nd ed.). Zonderman. p. 528.
- Lucas, Ernest (2002). Daniel. Leicester, England: Apollos. ISBN 0-85111-780-5.
- Millard, Alan R. (Apr-June 1977). "Daniel 1-6 and History" (PDF). Evangelical Quarterly (Paternoster) 49 (2): 67–73. Retrieved 2010-06-19.
- Miller, Stephen B. (1994). Daniel. New American Commentary 18. Nashville: Broadman and Holman. p. 348. ISBN 0-8054-0118-0.
- Murphy, Frederick James (1998). Fallen is Babylon: the Revelation to John (Google On-line Books). Trinity Press International. p. 472. ISBN 1-56338-152-4. Retrieved 2010-06-26.
- Notes (1992). The New American Bible. Catholic Book Publishing Co. p. 1021. ISBN 978-0-89942-510-8.
- Oppenheim, A. Leo (1966). "Babylonian and Assyrian Historical Texts". In James B. Pritchard. Ancient Near Eastern Texts (2nd ed.; 3rd print ed.). Princeton University Press. p. 308.
- Rowley, H. H. (1959). Darius the Mede and the Four World Empires in the Book of Daniel: A Historical Study of Contemporary Theories. University of Wales Press. p. 195. ISBN 1-59752-896-X.
- Rowley, Harold Henry (1963). The Growth of the Old Testament. Harper & Row.
- Schwartz, Daniel R. (1992). Studies in the Jewish background of Christianity (Google On-line Books). Mohr Siebeck. p. 304. ISBN 3-16-145798-6. Retrieved 2010-06-28.
- Shea, William H. (1982). "Nabonidus, Belshazzar, and the Book of Daniel: An Update" (PDF). AUSS Journal Online Archive (Andrews University Seminary) 20 (2): 133–149. Retrieved 2010-06-19.
- Shea, William H. (1986). "The Prophecy of Daniel 9:24-27". In Holbrook, Frank. The Seventy Weeks, Leviticus, and the Nature of Prophecy. Daniel and Revelation Committee Series 3. Review and Herald Publishing Association.
- Steinberg, Martin H. Manser ; associate editors, David Barratt, Pieter J. Lalleman, Julius Steinberg (2009). Critical companion to the Bible : a literary reference. New York: Facts On File. ISBN 978-0-8160-7065-7.
- Stimilli, Davide (2005). The face of immortality : physiognomy and criticism. Albany: State University of New York Press. ISBN 978-0-7914-6263-8.
- Tyndale; Elwell, Walter A., Comfort, Philip W. (2001). Tyndale Bible dictionary. Wheaton, Ill.: Tyndale House Publishers. ISBN 978-0-8423-7089-9.
- Tomasino, Anthony J. (2003). Judaism before Jesus: the ideas and events that shaped the New Testament world. IVP Academic; Print On Demand Edition. p. 345. ISBN 0-8308-2730-7. Retrieved 2010-06-26.
- VanderKam, James; Flint, Peter (2002). The meaning of the Dead Sea scrolls: their significance for understanding the Bible, Judaism, Jesus, and Christianity (1st paperback ed.). London: T&T Clark. pp. 137–8. ISBN 978-0-567-08468-2.
- Wiseman, D. J. (1965). Notes on Some Problems in the Book of Daniel. London: Tyndale Press. p. 80. ISBN 0-85111-038-X.
- Wilson, Robert Dick (1917). Studies In The Book Of Daniel: A Discussion Of The Historical Questions. G. P. Putnam's Sons. p. 408. ISBN 1-4372-6462-X.
- Xenophon. "5". Cyropaedia 7. Perseus Digital Library. 28-30. ISBN 1-4191-1485-9.
- Young, Edward J. (2009) . The Prophecy of Daniel: a Commentary. Eerdmans Publishing. p. 332. ISBN 0-8028-6331-0.
- Collins, edited by John J.; VanEpps, Peter W. Flint ; with the assistance of Cameron (2002). The book of Daniel : composition and reception ([Reprint] ed.). Boston: Brill Academic Publishers. ISBN 0-391-04127-4.: Volume 1 and Volume 2
- DiTommaso, Lorenzo (2005). The Book of Daniel and the apocryphal Daniel literature ([Online-Ausg.] ed.). Leiden [u.a.]: Brill Academic Publishers. ISBN 90-04-14412-9.
- Woude, edited by A.S. van der (1993). The book of Daniel in the light of new findings. Leuven: Leuven University Press. ISBN 90-6831-467-X.
- Niskanen, Paul (2004). The Human and the Devine in History: Herodotus and the Book of Daniel. Journal for the study of the Old Testament. Supplementary series. London, et al. ISBN 0-567-08213-X.
- Towner, W. Sibley (1984). Daniel. Atlanta: Westminster John Knox Press. ISBN 978-0-8042-3122-0.
- Seow, C.L. (2003). Daniel (1st ed.). Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press. ISBN 0-664-25675-9.
- Evangelical dispensationalism
- John Nelson Darby, Studies on the book of Daniel: a course of lectures, ed. III, Publisher J.B. Bateman, 1864
- John F. Walvoord, Daniel: The Key to Prophetic Revelation, 1989. ISBN 0-8024-1753-1.
- Seventh-Day Adventist
- Doukhan, Jacques (2000). Secrets of Daniel: wisdom and dreams of a Jewish prince in exile. Review and Herald Pub Assoc. p. 191. ISBN 978-0-8280-1424-3.
- Ford, Desmond (1978). Daniel. Southern Publishing Association. p. 309. ISBN 0-8127-0174-7.
- Holbrook, Frank B., ed. (1986). Symposium on Daniel. Daniel & Revelation Committee Series 2. Biblical Research Institute: Review and Herald Publishing Association. p. 557. ISBN 0-925675-01-6.
- Pfandl, Gerhard (2004). Daniel: The Seer of Babylon. Review and Herald Pub Assoc. p. 121. ISBN 978-0-8280-1829-6.
- Shea, William H. (2005). Daniel: a reader's guide. Pacific Press Publishing Association. p. 287. ISBN 0-8163-2077-2.
- Stefanovic, Zdravko (2007). Daniel: Wisdom to the Wise: Commentary on the Book of Daniel. Pacific Press Publishing Association. p. 480. ISBN 978-0-8163-2212-1.
- Other books
- Bickerman, Elias (1984). Four strange books of the Bible : Jonah, Daniel, Koheleth, Esther. New York: Schocken Books. ISBN 0-8052-0774-0.
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