Closing Thoughts on Daniel
We're bringing our study in the book of Daniel to a close and I'd like to give some closing thoughts of this magnificent vision as received by the prophet Daniel. The purpose of the book I believe is centered on the message that there will always be a struggle between the Kingdom's of the World and the Kingdom of God. Daniel brings out the lessons we should learn of evil, in that evil is always unstable because it is rooted in our following our own wills instead of God's will. Evil cannot gain a foothold unless it finds a spirit of cooperation among the people of God. This is a problem in the church today. There's a willingness or blindness in the church to cooperate with evil in three levels that Daniel explains exists in our own lives. Doctrinal, moral, and spiritual. Where there is compromise in any of these areas, weakness and failure follow.
This book is both historical and prophetic, therefore many have attempted to pick one area of preference with unrealistic results. The marriage of both schools of thought give us the best results. However, the scriptures here should be looked at with an emphasis on future happenings. The language should be understood symbolically, and not literally. It would be a mistake to assume that the conflicts in this book should be understood exclusively in military terms, as many do. To do so draws our attention away from the fact that the real war is for our souls and never fought on the battlefields of history. As Paul said, "the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but spiritual." 2Cor. 10:3-4
The mystery of this book will be understood only as God reveals history in the unseen future. To Daniel, all this lies in the future. The chief reason for him receiving such a grand and mysterious vision was to lead him in a new dimension of spiritual understanding, and to encourage him as a man of prayer. Daniel's visions are not given in the form of history written in advance. Much of the meaning ofDaniel's vision will become clear only when it is fulfilled. It is to be received by faith and not by sight. Daniel concludes with the notion that because God's people will be different as a result of these visions and dreams then, we should be different now. That is the challenge of the entire book of Daniel.