Widely referred to as Daniel’s vision of the Ram and the Goat, Daniel actually had this dream prior to the events recorded in chapter 5, where we found the story of the handwriting on the wall. It’s recorded here because it doesn’t just outline the end of King Belshazzar’s life, but also the end of the Babylonian Empire at the hands of the Persians, then the end of the Persian Empire at the hands of the Greeks, and finally how specific events impact life in Palestine, the home of the Jews.
Daniel 8 Timeline Highlights
612 BC Babylonian Empire defeat the Assyrians
547 BC 3rd Year of Belshazzar’s reign (grandson of Nebuchnezzar) This vision takes place before the events described in Daniel 5 (the Handwriting on the Wall).
539 BC The Persian Empire (THE RAM) defeat the Babylonians. Belshazzar dies before the Persian King Cyrus arrives
341 BC The Greek Empire (THE GOAT) defeat the Persians
323 BC Alexander the Great (THE PROMINENT HORN) dies at the height of his power. His empire is divided into 4 separate parts led by his 4 former generals (THE FOUR HORNS).
175 BC Antiochus Epiphanes becomes Greek King of Palestine
169 BC Failed Jewish revolt in Jerusalem led Antiochus to ruthlessly attack Jerusalem, kill 80,000, loot the Temple, and institute the worship of Zeus
165 BC A successful second Jewish revolt led by Judas Maccabees recaptures Jerusalem and reinstitutes the daily morning and evening sacrifices after 1150 days and 1150 nights. This is what is still celebrated by Jews as “HANUKAH”
“While the historical account is amazing, the purpose of studying history is to gain understanding.”
CONVICTION #1 – “GOD KNOWS YOUR PAST, YOUR PRESENT AND YOUR FUTURE”
- There is nothing in the “timeline” of your life that has escaped His attention
- God’s “omniscience” = God is “all-knowing”
- Be encouraged….. The One who knows you the best loves you the most!
CONVICTION #2 – “YOUR CHARACTER WILL ALWAYS OUTLIVE YOU!”
- When judged by history, your character counts more than your good looks, your accomplishments, your testimonials, your wealth or your fame!
“I do the very vest I know how – the best I can; and I mean to keep doing this until the end. If the end brings me out all right, what is said against me won’t amount to anything. If the end brings me up wrong, then the angels swearing I was right will make no difference”.
– Abraham Lincoln
CONVICTION #3 – “IN TROUBLING TIMES, GOD’S PEOPLE NEED TO GET UP AND BE ABOUT THE KING’S BUSINESS”
Sometimes when things are somewhat overwhelming,
the best thing you can do is the next right thing!!
“Do not follow where the path may lead.
Follow God instead where there is no path………..
AND LEAVE A TRAIL!”
CONCLUSION: “How are your convictions holding up in the midst of life’s storms?”