WORLD POWERS OF DANIEL PART 2

THE EIGHT WORLD POWERS OF DANIEL, REVELATION AND HISTORY

…And Implications for our Future

(CONTINUED)

JOHN’S VISIONS:

In Revelation Chapter 13 John describes the end-time world government, the ten-toed beast of iron and clay of Daniel Chapters 2 and 7. This beast appears to John as a composite seven-headed, ten-horned beast having elements of the animals described in Daniel Chapter 7: the form of a leopard with the feet of a bear and the mouth of a lion, to which authority was given by satan.

John notes that one of the seven heads appeared as if wounded to death, but was healed to the amazement of the world. Most eschatologists view this head as of the antichrist, but Irvin Baxter has a very different and more logical take on the identity of the head as a nation, specifically Germany, at a time when it was a dominant power. This assignment, which will be examined in more detail later, is far more consistent with the prophetic identification of a head by both Daniel and John as a world power.

This beast is supported by a being with two horns like a lamb (appearing like Jesus) but speaking like a dragon (behaving like satan) who is conventionally interpreted as the false prophet.

Ultimately, as chronicled in Revelation Chapters 16, 19 and 20, this beast is destroyed by Jesus Christ, who reigns on earth as King of kings.

As noted in the discussion of Daniel’s visions, the heads are commonly interpreted as successive instances over time of dominant power, while the horns are taken as simultaneously-reigning heads of state within a multi-state kingdom. This viewpoint is reinforced in Revelation 17:9-13:

“And here is the mind that hath wisdom, The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth. And there are seven kings: five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come; and when he cometh, he must continue a short space. And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition. And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, who have received no kingdom as yet, but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast.”

The seven mountains on which the woman sits are sometimes interpreted as the seven hills of Rome, but a more common interpretation is that each mountain represents a world-dominant empire. This latter interpretation also supports two differing camps: one is that Revelation 17 describes the kingdoms under the entire sweep of man’s history in attempting to govern himself, unlike Daniel, who described only five kingdoms of man, the earlier two major kingdoms of Egypt and Assyria having already enjoyed their time under the sun and having passed from world domination; the other is that Revelation describes the same five empires as Daniel, represented by one head each for the lion, bear and iron beast, and four for the four-headed leopard. I favor this latter interpretation, for which the similar visions of Daniel and John dovetail together remarkably well.

THE HISTORICAL RECORD:

History records the amazing accuracy of Daniel’s visions of empires. From his time to the present, there indeed have been four dominant empires, with a fifth looming distressingly close. History also confirms that Daniel’s empires had both short-term and long-terms fulfillments.

In the short-term fulfillment, Babylon of the sixth century B.C. was the head of gold and the lion; silver Medo-Persia the bear, specifically identified by Daniel in Chapter 8, held sway over the world in the fifth and sixth centuries; Greece of brass under Alexander the Great; and Rome of iron under a succession of emperors beginning with Augustus, who in 27 B.C. converted Rome from a republic to an empire with his assumption of dictatorial powers.

Daniel’s description of Medo-Persia as having two uneven horns is astonishingly accurate. Persia, the dominant of the two, was headed by the son-in-law of the Mede ruler. The son indeed was the stronger head of state. Medo-Persia actually was overcome by the Grecians, of whom the head was the single ruler Alexander. Alexander swiftly overran the known world in the fourth century B.C., after which he lamented in a drunken stupor that he had nothing left to conquer. He died at the age of thirty-three, whereupon his kingdom, true to Daniel’s prophecy, was divided up among four of his generals: Macedonia to Cassander, Thrace to Lysimachus, Egypt to Ptolemy I, and Syria to Seleucus.

The long-term fulfillment of Daniel’s vision of empires is just as startlingly accurate. In this case, the empires of Daniel correspond to the composite beast of Revelation 13, where the composition of empires admits to ready identification by universally-recognized iconic symbols. They are: England (the lion) and the United States (the eagle), Russia (the bear), Germany (the leopard), Rome (the iron beast) and the Holy Roman Empire whose amalgam of religion and secular rule fits the antichrist/false prophet characteristic possibly becomes the World Government of the antichrist, and The everlasting kingdom of Jesus Christ.

The United States did indeed come from primarily English roots, from which it disassociated itself (in Daniel’s account, was plucked off) in the Revolutionary War. Ominously, the United States is not included in the composite beast of Revelation 13, a feature that is variously interpreted by pessimists as the annihilation of the U.S., by both pessimists and optimists as its total integration back into the world government, or by optimists simply as its irrelevance to the major events taking place at the time of the end of the age.

Germany who presently boasts of its very capable Leopard battle tank, already has had three successive heads under which it became a world power: Charlemagne, Kaiser Wilhelm (WWI), The Third Reich under Hitler culminating in WWII and is now in the process of becoming a true world power for the fourth time under a dynamic and forceful leader, who may eventually become ruler of one of the ten horns forecast by Daniel and John. Consistent with Irvin Baxter’s identification of the wounded head of Revelation 13:3 as a world power, Germany under Hitler suffered the neutralization and division of its capital Berlin after its collapse at the end of WWII, a wound which was healed to the surprise of the world upon the tearing down of the Berlin Wall and the reunification of Germany.

The Roman Empire (which was preceded by the Roman Republic) had western and eastern legs, precisely completing Daniel’s vision for it. The western leg occupied the time period from the first century B.C. to the fifth century A.D., whereas the eastern leg survived for a much longer period, extending to the fifteenth century A.D.

[to be continued]

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