The Mighty Angels of Daniel 10: The Magnificent Man
By Nathan Jones
The Magnificent Man Clothed In Linen
Nathan Jones: Daniel 10:4-6 describes the awesome appearance of one of God’s mighty angels!
“Now on the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I was by the side of the great river, that is, the Tigris, I lifted my eyes and looked, and behold, a certain man clothed in linen, whose waist was girded with gold of Uphaz! His body was like beryl, his face like the appearance of lightning, his eyes like torches of fire, his arms and feet like burnished bronze in color, and the sound of his words like the voice of a multitude.”
Nathan Jones: To quickly recap what has come before, the Prophet Daniel was living in a time when the Medo-Persian Empire had conquered the Babylonian Empire. Daniel still held a position of authority in the new empire, and he continued his service as a revealer of dreams. A new king has come to town, King Cyrus, the king who was prophesied by Isaiah. He would allow the Jewish people to return to Israel and rebuild the Temple. Daniel was living in an exciting time period! The exiled Jews are finally returning to rebuild the city of Jerusalem and the Temple.
By this point, Daniel is a very old man, and so he likely did not return with the remnant. Instead, here we find Daniel sitting besides the Tigris River in what now is present day Iraq. God had given Daniel a bunch of prophecies recorded in Daniel 9 concerning 490 years until the Messiah arrives, and the perplexed prophet was trying to fully understand just what that prophecy meant.
Now we’ve reached Daniel 10. Daniel has been fasting and praying for three weeks in the hopes of receiving an answer to his prayers. And low and behold, an angel appears, ready with an answer!
Vic Batista: Is this magnificent visage just an angel, or a description of Jesus in His divine state, like we read in Revelation 1 and other chapters?
Nathan Jones: Indeed, it is very interesting just how much this description matches the description of Jesus Christ in Revelation 1, who in His glorified body had been stripped of His earthly container allowing the light of His glory to shine through. But, there will be indicators as we read through chapter 10 that prove that this is not Jesus Christ.
For one, Daniel will later address this entity as “sir,” meaning a lower case “lord,” and not with the grandeur of God Himself. Plus, this entity who has been sent to Daniel comes as a messenger sent from Heaven. Jesus sends Himself, He is not sent except by the Father. So, all indications point to the fact that this is an angel Daniel is conversing with.
In previous encounters, as Daniel prayed, the Angel Gabriel was the angel Heaven sent to Daniel. True, Daniel doesn’t at this time identify the being as Gabriel, so the messenger could be a different angel, but since Gabriel is God’s chief messenger, this most likely is the Angel Gabriel.
Vic Batista: Yes, we don’t want to become divided over interpretation. Instead, let’s look at Scripture and let Scriptures speak for itself.
Regardless, this being definitely was an amazing looking individual. Most of God’s mighty angels, especially the seraphim and cherubim, look just awesome!
Nathan Jones: This angel’s description reminds us that angels are not all just a bunch of curly haired white guys sporting wings and a toga, as children’s books portray. Angels come in all sorts of different shapes and sizes. This one particularly is clothed in light. Can you image that? He’s so bright He glows! His voice is not just the voice of one individual, but consists of multitudes of voices in power.
Picture what seeing this angel must have been like for Daniel. The man has never seen a nuclear reactor obviously, but the angel glows like one. The angel appears to be comprised of almost pure energy, even though he has the appearance of a man. He wears clothes and is girded in gold.
In the thirty-sixth segment of this series on the mighty angels of Daniel, we’ll ponder over why Daniel’s men couldn’t also see the angel.