ANOTHER DREAM FOR TELLS “The times of the Gentiles”. (Daniel 7:1-7 – In the first year of Belshazzar king of Babylon Daniel had a dream and visions of his head upon his bed: then he wrote the dream, and told the sum of the matters. Daniel spake and said, I saw in my vision by night, and, behold, the four winds of the heaven strove upon the great sea. And four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse one from another. The first was like a lion, and had eagle’s wings: I beheld till the wings thereof were plucked, and it was lifted up from the earth, and made stand upon the feet as a man, and a man’s heart was given to it. And behold another beast, a second, like to a bear, and it raised up itself on one side, and it had three ribs in the mouth of it between the teeth of it: and they said thus unto it, Arise, devour much flesh. After this I beheld, and lo another, like a leopard, which had upon the back of it four wings of a fowl; the beast had also four heads; and dominion was given to it. After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had ten horns.)
- “The first was like a lion, and had eagle’s wings: “– Verse 4 is talking about the Babylonian Empire.
- “second, like to a bear, and it raised up itself on one side, and it had three ribs in the mouth of it between the teeth of it: and they said thus unto it, Arise, devour much flesh.” – Verse 5 is talking about the Medo- Persian Empire.
- “and lo another, like a leopard, which had upon the back of it four wings of a fowl; the beast had also four heads; and dominion was given to it.” – Verse 6 is referring to the Grecian Empire.
- “and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had ten horns.” – Verse 7 is referring to the Roman Empire.
- Verse 9 in this chapter refers to the “Ancient of Days” (Daniel 7:9 – I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire.) – “The Ancient of Days” is a reference to God as Judge.
THE FEET AND TOES OF THE IMAGE (Daniel 2:41-43 – And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters’ clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay. And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken. And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay.)
“This brings us to the last form of the fourth kingdom; for the Roman Empire, though at present in abeyance, has not yet come to its end. The ten toes on the feet of the image represent the ten kings who are to reign at one time, but who will form a confederacy on the ground of the ancient empire. This is something which the world has never seen.” Dr. H.A. Ironsides, 1911.
- One of the signs that the end of the church age is near and the rapture is at hand is that we are starting to see the old crumbled Roman Empire starting to gather again. The revived Roman Empire is starting to come together again.
- Different groups of people will combine to form the final stage of the reunited Roman Empire. But because they are different groups of people, they have different cultures, different languages they will not completely adhere together. This is symbolized in the feet being part clay and part Iron. Clay and Iron do not adhere together.
- The iron in the feet symbolizes the military power and might on the reunited Roman Empire. Iron is strong their united military might will be impressively strong but because of all their differences in other areas they will not adhere together in a way to sustain their might.
- It first started coming together in the European Economic Community, then the European Common Market, and now with the emergence of one currency throughout most of the European Union we see the emergence of the old Roman Empire on the horizon. – One notable exception to this uniting is the United Kingdom, we will examine why this may be happening in a future lesson.
- These verses indicate the final stage of the Roman Empire will consist of 10 Kings of equal power in a federation together based on a need to unite for the sake of military strength. (Revelation 17:12 – And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast.)
- This ten division federation will ultimately give its allegiance to the Antichrist. (Revelation 17:13 – These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast.)
THE END OF “The times of the Gentiles” (Daniel 2:34-35 – Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces. Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth.)
- “The times of the Gentiles” began with King Nebuchadnezzar and they end with the Antichirst ruling a revived Roman Empire.
- The stone of the dream not only represents the future coming kingdom but its King as well. That King will be the Messiah, (Psalm 2:6 – Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion.) the Son of Man who comes with the clouds of Heaven (Daniel 7:13-14 – I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.)
- The appearance of the stone represents the coming of Christ to establish His Kingdom on earth. In Revelation chapters 19-20 John indicates that Christ will crush the Gentile world powers at His second coming and rule the earth for 1000 years.
HOW WAS DANIEL ABLE TO BE USED BY GOD SO MIGHTILY CONCERNING THESE DREAMS AND OTHER THINGS IN HIS LIFE? Daniel was able to be used by God to interpret the prophetic dreams because he purposed in his heart to remain pure so he could be used of God. (Daniel 1:8 – But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.)
- Daniel made a decision to live for the Lord. He made a decision to be pure no matter what. Daniel made the decision in spite of the possible repercussions to himself. He put the Lord first in his life.
- Daniel put the Lords standards for living his life, first in his life. Daniel purposed to live his life the way God’s word instructed him to.
- Have you “purposed” in your heart to serve the Lord with your life? Have you decided to live your life according to God’s standards for your life? Are you willing to live by God’s standards of what is right and wrong for your life and not yours?
- Daniel was able to be mightily used by God because he “purposed in his heart” to remain pure and usable in God’s design for his life. Are you keeping yourself pure in all areas of your life? Or are you trying to see how much you can get away with? If you want God to use you; you need keep yourself ready to be used!
CLIMAX OF THE TIME OF THE GENTILES – During the last 3 ½ years of the tribulation (Mathew 24:21, Revelation 7:14) the Jews will be again persecuted and driven out of Jerusalem. This time period begins with the Abomination of Desolation (Daniel 9:27 – And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. & Mathew 24:15-16 – When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand: Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:). This will be the climax of “The times of the Gentiles” this time period will last 42 months. The “Times of the Gentiles” will end when Jesus comes and establishes His millennial Kingdom. At this time the nation of Israel will become the spiritual and political center of the world. (Zechariah 8:22 – Yea, many people and strong nations shall come to seek the LORD of hosts in Jerusalem, and to pray before the LORD.)
IN CONCLUSION: We saw how Daniel was able to be mightily used by God and why God could use him; because he “purposed in his heart “to keep himself pure and usable by God. How about you? Have you purposed in your heart to keep yourself pure and usable by God? We examined the dreams of Nebuchadnezzar and their meaning. We saw how they have foretold the grand themes of all of human history since then. They prophesied the destruction of empires and the coming of new ones. They even prophesied about future rulers and division of kingdoms. We saw how the “times of the Gentiles” would come to an end. All of human history fell in line just as the Scriptures indicated it would. This is a great demonstration of the mighty attributes of God, His omnipotence, His omniscience and His omnipresence.
Will you life fall in line with what the Lord has in His will for it? Determine that it will and purpose in your heart to be mightily used by God!