Premillennialism in the Book of Daniel -- By: Kenneth L. Barker
MSJ 4:1 (Spr 93) p. 25
Premillennialism in the Book of Daniel
Among six passages in Daniel that pertain to a promised future kingdom, three are most relevant to premillennialism: 2:31–45; 7:1–27; 9:24–27. By means of Daniel’s interpretation of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream-vision of a statue, 2:31–45 prophesies about five kingdoms that will appear in sequence, the last of which comes in the form of a Messianic stone that will crush the ones before it and and fill the whole earth. Daniel 7:1–27 covers the same ground from a different perspective. Here Daniel receives a two-part vision, the former part including four beasts that represent kingdoms and the latter, the Ancient of Days and the Messianic Son of Man. Subsequent interpretation details the Son of Man’s subjugation of these kingdoms to Himself after a period of tribulation. The prophecy of the seventy “weeks” in 9:24–27 supplies additional data regarding a premillennial return of the Messianic ruler to set up an earthly kingdom. These data include such things as the time-frame of the Messianic ruler’s first and second advents and the purposes of the two advents. All three passages correlate most easily with what is taught throughout Scripture about a premillennial return of Christ.
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MSJ 4:1 (Spr 93) p. 26
Theme, Scope, and Hermeneutical Approach
This article is an overview of evidence for premillennialism in the Book of Daniel, a key verse of which is Dan 2:44: “In the time of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever.”2 The article could just as appropriately have been entitled “The Most High God Is Sovereign,” for the Lord rules “over the kingdoms of men” (Dan 5:21; cf. 4:17, 25, 32). Indeed, “the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ” (Rev 11:15; cf. Ps 2:2) is the central focus of biblical theology.
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