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The Resurrection of the Dead


“At that time Michael, the great prince, the protector of your people, shall arise. There shall be a time of anguish, such as has never occurred since nations first came into existence. But at that time your people shall be delivered, everyone who is found written in the book. 2Many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. 3Those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever. 4But you, Daniel, keep the words secret and the book sealed until the time of the end. Many shall be running back and forth, and evil shall increase.”

5 Then I, Daniel, looked, and two others appeared, one standing on this bank of the stream and one on the other. 6One of them said to the man clothed in linen, who was upstream, “How long shall it be until the end of these wonders?” 7The man clothed in linen, who was upstream, raised his right hand and his left hand toward heaven. And I heard him swear by the one who lives forever that it would be for a time, two times, and half a time, and that when the shattering of the power of the holy people comes to an end, all these things would be accomplished. 8I heard but could not understand; so I said, “My lord, what shall be the outcome of these things?” 9He said, “Go your way, Daniel, for the words are to remain secret and sealed until the time of the end. 10Many shall be purified, cleansed, and refined, but the wicked shall continue to act wickedly. None of the wicked shall understand, but those who are wise shall understand. 11From the time that the regular burnt offering is taken away and the abomination that desolates is set up, there shall be one thousand two hundred ninety days. 12Happy are those who persevere and attain the thousand three hundred thirty-five days. 13But you, go your way, and rest; you shall rise for your reward at the end of the days.”

Now Daniel begins to ask questions in accordance with the angel’s example. He had first heard one angel inquiring of the other; he next summons up courage, and becomes desirous of information, and asks what should be the end or issue? He says, he heard without understanding By the word “hearing,” he bears witness to the absence of ignorance, slothfulness, or contempt. Many depart without any perception of a subject, although it may be very well explained, because they were not attentive to it. But here the Prophet asserts that he heard; implying, it would be no fault of his diligence if he did not understand, because he was desirous of learning, and had exerted all his powers, as we formerly intimated, and yet he confesses he did not understand Daniel does not mean to profess utter stupidity, but restricts his ignorance to the subject of this interrogation. Of what then was Daniel ignorant? Of the final issue. He could not attain unto the meaning of these predictions, which were so extremely obscure, and this was needful to their full and thorough comprehension. It is quite clear that God never utters his word without expecting fruit; as it is said in Isaiah, I have not spoken unintelligibly, nor have I said to the seed of Jacob, seek ye me in vain. (Isaiah 45:19.) God was unwilling to leave his Prophet in this perplexity of hearing without understanding, but we are aware of distinct degrees of proficiency in the school of God. Again, sufficient revelation was notoriously conferred upon the prophets for the discharge of their office, and yet none of them ever perfectly understood the predictions they delivered. We know, too, what Peter says, They ministered more for our times than for their own. (1 Peter 1:12.) They were by no means useless to their own age, but when our age is compared with theirs, certainly the instruction and discipline of the prophets is more useful to us, and produces richer and riper fruit in our age than in theirs. We are not surprised, then, at Daniel confessing he did not understand, so long as we restrict the words to this single instance. It now follows: —

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