Dan (Bible)

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Portuguese sketch. The English name is Dan.
For the place, see Dan (ancient city).

According to the Book of Genesis, Dan (Hebrew: דָּן, Standard Dan Tiberian Dān; "judgment" or "he judged") was the fifth son of Jacob with Bilhah.[1] He was Bilhah's first son. He was the founder of the Israelite Tribe of Dan.[2] In the biblical account, Dan's mother is described as Rachel's handmaid, who becomes one of Jacob's wives. (Genesis 30:1-6)

According to the Book of Jubilees, Dan was born on the 9th of Ellul.


The text of the Torah explains that the name of Dan derives from dananni, meaning he has judged me, in reference to Rachel's belief that she had gained a child as the result of a judgment from God.[3]

Biblical references[edit]

Owing to the Book of Judges, in the account of Micah's Idol, describing the tribe of Dan as having used ephod and teraphim in worship, and Samson (a member of the tribe of Dan) being described as failing to adhere to the rules of a Nazarite, classical rabbinical writers concluded that Dan was very much a black sheep;[4] in the Book of Jeremiah, the north of Canaan is associated with darkness and evil,[5] and so rabbinical sources treated Dan as the archetype of wickedness.[4] In the apocryphal Testaments of the Patriarchs, Dan is portrayed as having hated Joseph, and having been the one that invented the idea of deceiving Jacob by the smearing of Joseph's coat with the blood of a kid;[6][7][8] in the apocryphal Prayer of Asenath, Dan is portrayed as plotting with the Egyptian crown prince, against Joseph and Asenath.[4] In the Blessing of Jacob, Dan is described as a serpent, which seems to have been interpreted as connecting Dan to Belial,[4] a connection made, for example, in the apocryphal Testament of Dan;[9] early Christian writers, such as Irenaeus and Hippolytus, even believed that the Antichrist would come from the tribe of Dan[10][11] drawing the belief from a verse from the Book of Jeremiah which states the snorting of [the enemy's] horses was heard from Dan.[4][12]

John the apostle omits the tribe of Dan when mentioning the 12 tribes of the sons of Israel, in regard to the 144,000 sealed Israelites.[13] Perhaps this is a testimony of the unworthiness of Dan. Instead of Dan, the tribe of Joseph appears twice.

According to some rapture believers, the reason Dan is not mentioned in the 144,000 of Revelation is because Dan's descendants get raptured. His descendants migrated to areas where the Gospel of a new covenant is freely preached & they accept it so they escape the tribulation. The 144,000 are Jews who accept the Gospel AFTER Daniels week begins, when the 2 witnesses give the Gospel to the Jews in Israel during the tribulation period. When Christ turns His attention once again to His people Judah. By this time Dans descendants are in heaven celebrating the marriage supper since they repented and accepted the Gospel during the time of the Lord's grace. It is also believed that the prophecy about Dan being a serpent that strikes the horse & throws the rider back is alluding to the horsemen of Revelation & how the prophesied end time prophet of Malachi 4:5,6kjv disrupts a world that is off God's timeline & resets mankind back on the proper course, thus throwing the horsemen of Revelation back until the proper time... Dan is also the tribe that was responsible for building ships & vessels that carried his brothers to distant places in search of more peaceful territory.. which may allude to why Malachi 4:5,6kjv might come from Dan as he prepares the bride for the rapture & also disrupts satan's attempt to alter God's timeline for prophetical events. Also, Acts 3:22,23kjv is a message that was to Jewish Jesus followers shortly after the crucifixion of Jesus, concerning an end time prophet similar to Moses, a prophet from "among their brethren" which is a reflection of Malachi 4:5,6kjv which again might be possibly alluding to the lineage of Dan... Dan was the last son to receive his inheritance & Jesus said, "the last shall be first & the first shall be last...." (Matthew 20:16), which might also serve as scriptural proof as to why Dan's descendants get raptured & receive their inheritance first this time..

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Dan". Easton's Bible Dictionary. 1897. 
  2. ^ Genesis 30:3-4
  3. ^ Genesis 30:6
  4. ^ a b c d e Jewish Encyclopedia
  5. ^ Jeremiah 1:14
  6. ^ Testament of Dan 1
  7. ^ Testament of Zebulun 4
  8. ^ Testament of Gad 1
  9. ^ Testament of Dan, 5
  10. ^ Irenaeus, Adversus Haereses,
  11. ^ Hippolytus, Of Christ and Antichrist
  12. ^ Jeremiah 8:16
  13. ^ Revelation 7:5-8