Daniel 7:9 (ESV) … “As I looked, thrones were placed, and the Ancient of Days took his seat; his clothing was white as snow, and the hair of his head like pure wool; his throne was fiery flames; its wheels were burning fire.”
For full study please read Daniel chapter seven. Now, Daniel 7 means that we are no longer in the dark about the future history of the world. Towards the close of this present age the little horn will appear. The ‘man of sin’ will wage war on God’s people. He will become stronger and stronger, and they will be unable to stand against him. We envisage that organized missionary activity will be crushed, and that the church of God will be broken, destroyed and ruined. Its visible form will disappear.
There will still be Christians, for we have repeatedly learned that nothing can destroy God’s remnant. But as far as the godless world is concerned, all traces of God, His worship and His people, will be gone. It will look as if evil has won the day. It will seem as if Satan has triumphed. There will be such an unloosing of ungodly forces that it will appear as if God has abdicated His throne.
It is at that moment that the power of evil will be cut off. The Lord Jesus Christ shall suddenly return from heaven. He will take home His people to eternally reign with Him. There will be no trace of evil in the new heaven and the new earth, while all who have loved and cherished a lie will suffer justly, and eternally, in hell.
That is a matter for us, like Daniel, to keep constantly in our hearts.
Meanwhile we ought to prepare ourselves for the rough ride ahead. This would be true if this chapter were the only passage in God’s Word which spoke of these things. But it is not. We have seen how the same teaching is given by Paul in 2 Thessalonians. Even a superficial reading of Revelation underlines the same truth. Dark days await the church of Christ. Evil men will wax worse and worse. Eventually the ‘man of sin’ will be revealed, and the light will go out. There cannot be a second advent of our Lord until this awful figure has appeared (2 Thessalonians 2:1–12).
Yet at that time God will be as much in control as ever! Nothing will have happened other than what He predicted. His control of history is absolute, even when He seems to be absent from the world He has made.
In those days it will appear as if evil has become a permanent fixture. That will be the moment of God’s momentous display of justice and power. He will end the world and summon every evildoer to His judgement. We shall search for the blasphemer, the persecutor, the merchant of pornography, and every breaker of the Ten Commandments—and will find that every one has entered into his deserved condemnation.
All rule will be seen to be in the hands of One who bears the marks of whipping, of a crown of thorns, of crucifixion and of piercing. The title of ‘Lord’ will be exclusively His. Those who have loved Him and submitted to Him by repenting and believing the gospel will share His glory. They will rejoice in the fathomless wonder of being eternally with Him as citizens of the kingdom which shall never pass away.
Is it worth remaining true to God in a hostile environment? Is it worth putting up with the contempt and cruelty of the world around in order to identify with a persecuted minority?
Did Daniel ask that question? Do you? The dream that God gave him was the answer that he needed, and is enough for our needs, too. Does it really matter if we do not understand all its details? The overall message is so clear that we can never again want to side with the majority. It is not worth it. The future does not belong to them, but to us. We can dare to stand alone.