The Mighty Angels of Daniel 12: Two Staggering Prophecies
By Nathan Jones
Two Staggering Prophecies
Vic Batista: Daniel 12:4 contains two staggering prophecies! Let’s allow the Holy Spirit to lead us in discovering their amazing interpretations. “But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.”
Nathan Jones: Let’s paraphrase what God’s mighty messenger angel has been telling the Prophet Daniel so far in chapters 10-12. “I just gave you all these fantastic prophecies about the future. They will mostly cover the whole Intertestamental time period. They cover a coming mad ruler from Syria named Antiochus Epiphanes. But, they also cover well into the future about an Antichrist who will rise at the end of the age. Terrible times are coming to the Jewish people leading up to when the Messiah comes and sets up His Kingdom.”
Then the angel gives an addendum with his further command. “Now you know much about the future, but, Daniel, you need to seal up this book until a time comes when people can understand your prophecies. That time will arrive when knowledge greatly increases and people can travel vast distances quickly.”
Now, if you or I were given such a fantastic message like that from an angel, wouldn’t you be telling everybody about it? But, no, the angel orders, “Daniel, you’ve got to shut the book and put it away. Seal it up until the end times.”
Did Daniel actually seal the book away? Well, the book of Daniel has been in the Bible since Daniel wrote it around 550 BC. What’s sealed away is the understanding of its prophecies. Many over the subsequent centuries have not understood what to make of its prophecies. Why?
Because, firstly, these prophecies hadn’t yet come true when they were given to Daniel. The world waited centuries before they began to be fulfilled, and then historians could look back and see how detailed the prophecies then paralleled fulfilled history.
Secondly, the reader didn’t have the further revelation from the New Testament that Jesus taught about concerning the signs of the end times that pointed to His return. But, now we do know. In our day, we have that increase of knowledge the angel prophesied about. We know Bible prophecy better because more has been revealed to us through continual fulfillment of said prophecies.
Daniel 12:4 also reveals two amazing facts about the distant future — our day — that identifies the end times. These two conditions define the end times.
Firstly, “many shall run to and fro.” In other words, transportation will dramatically increase, the likes which has never been. We live in a world that merely 100 years ago couldn’t imagine the population flying around the world. Today, flying is just as normal as running to the store to pick up some eggs. The world runs to and fro at a record pace, and it all just took off in the last 100-150 years.
Secondly, computer technology has fostered an astronomical spike in the increase in knowledge unlike anything that has ever been seen, even in the last 100 years or so. In the 1800s, the average person read in their entire lifetime the equivalent of the Sunday edition of the New York Times. Today, in this Information Age, we consume that same amount of information on a daily basis.
So, those two events — a rise in transportation and an increase in knowledge — would be a sign of the end times that point to the rise of the Antichrist and the Lord’s soon return.
Vic Batista: Amazing! We actually are starting to see vehicles that literally drive themselves. I can travel to the other side of the world in a day, and use my cell phone or an e-book to learn about anything I want.
How crazy that sometimes people look at these prophecies in Daniel and conclude oddly that the Bible is archaic and irrelevant. But, when you read such prophecies in the light of our day, and marvel over such achievements as SpaceX and the iPad, well that’s prophecy coming true right before our eyes.
Technologists report that the knowledge contained in the World Wide Web multiplies every few years. In just a few years from today, we’ll know more than all of history put together, because knowledge will continue to increase exponentially.
Nathan Jones: That statistic about the Sunday edition of the New York Times is mind-blowing. That’s a 2-inch thick newspaper! Supposedly the entire amount of information that someone learned back in the 1800’s would fill just one newspaper. Today, we consume the equivalent of an entire newspaper every day, and that’s nothing compared to the constant updates, articles, news and online information we are consuming all day long.
I would argue that we are overloaded with too much knowledge and information. We can travel anywhere too fast, too much, too quickly for some and not quickly enough for others. Personally, I love to travel. But, you have to wonder if all our connectivity is helping or hurting society.
Opening Up the Book
Nathan Jones: Today we live in that very time period Daniel was ordered to shut up in his book. But, the angel revealed that when people run to and fro and knowledge increases, we would finally understand the book of Daniel. True to his prophecy, knowledge and travel define our day. We live in a time period when Bible prophecy is coming true and we are finally understanding these divine prophecies.
Vic Batista: Likewise, the book of Revelation means “the unveiling.” The Lord has poured out His Holy Spirit and has opened up the hearts and the minds of the people so they are able to understand prophetic Scriptures like they never could before. Whole ministries, such as Lamb & Lion Ministries, have sprung up all over opening up the prophetic Scriptures to help people understand God’s Word.
Nathan Jones: That we do, because Bible prophecy provides a message of hope. We want to give people hope. These are dark days and difficult, scary times. We live in the end times time period that Daniel was informed of by God’s mighty angel. We now can grab hold of that hope by understanding God’s prophetic big picture through what God shared with Daniel delivered by His mighty angel.
The Big Picture
Vic Batista: It boggles my mind that some people are afraid of biblical prophecy. They neglect to study prophecy because they claim it’s too difficult to understand.
Nathan Jones: We hear that all the time, mostly because most people don’t like to study. Pastors surprisingly don’t like to study prophecy either. They teach that there’s hope for today, but their people look around and see what a mess the world is, and then they ask, “Where is this hope my pastor keeps talking about? Where is this rescuing Jesus we are supposed to be waiting for?” By knowing God’s big picture you truly can possess hope. When you know the big picture, everything in life starts making sense. That’s when you have truly gain hope. Hope is what Bible prophecy grants the believer in Christ.
Vic Batista: That’s why we want to encourage God’s children to become students of biblical prophecy. Become a student of the Word of God. Scripture’s not that hard to understand when it’s being revealed by the Holy Spirit. I remember a time before I was saved trying to read the Bible without the Holy Spirit, and it just didn’t make any sense to me.
Nathan Jones: I’ve been a Christian as far back as I could read, so I don’t remember a time the Holy Spirit didn’t illuminate the Scriptures for me. But, for those who became saved later in life, they know the need for the Holy Spirit in their lives. Maybe a person’s current status in life remains as an unbeliever in Jesus Christ, but you are curious and you want to read the Bible. You may even wonder what the Holy Spirit is. God’s Spirit promises that if you ask for clarity He will provide you with the help you need in understanding the Scriptures.
If you’re brand new to the Bible, and when you finally have a Bible in front of you, start with the Book of John. Next, ask the Lord, “God, please help me to understand what you are trying to tell me.” The Lord promises He will give you His Holy Spirit to help you understand the Bible.
Vic Batista: True, before I was a believer I tried to read the Bible, and it was like reading Chinese. Then I accepted the Lord, and He opened my heart, and suddenly these prophetic scriptures jumped out of the pages. That’s how God works.
Nathan Jones: We all need the Holy Spirit. The Bible reveals that we are like dead men without God’s Spirit in us, and we’re unable to understand His ways. God’s ways are like stumbling blocks to those who do not believe, but to those who believe, His words are the very foundational truths of life. You, too, can embrace the message of life if you have the Holy Spirit guiding you through these passages. Where will God guide you? He will guide you towards understanding Jesus Christ as the savior of your soul.
Vic Batista: As God’s mighty messenger angel closed verse 4 with, “But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase,” so we close this segment. We pray that the Holy Spirit may open up your hearts and minds to understanding His profound messages.
The first segment of this series on the mighty angels of Daniel began with a tragic back story. In the eighty-first segment, we will continue to reveal the mysteries hidden in Daniel 12.