Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands
Or, "wast seeing" F5; the king continued looking upon the image that stood before him, as he thought, as long as he could see it, till he saw a "stone": an emblem of the Messiah, as it often is in Scripture, ( Genesis 49:24 ) ( Psalms 118:22 ) ( Isaiah 8:14 ) ( 28:16 ) ( Zechariah 3:8 ) , because of his strength, firmness, and duration; and so it is interpreted here by many Jewish writers, ancient and modern, as well as by Christians; and also of his kingdom, or of him in his kingly office; see ( Daniel 2:44 ) . In an ancient book F6 of theirs, written by R. Simeon Ben Jochai, the author interprets this stone, cut out of the mountain without hands, to be the same with him who in ( Genesis 49:24 ) , is called the Shepherd and Stone of Israel; as it is by Saadiah Gaon, a later writer; and in another of their writings F7, reckoned by them very ancient, it is said, that the ninth king (for they speak of ten) shall be the King Messiah, who shall reign from one end of the world to the other, according to that passage, "the stone which smote the image" ( Daniel 2:35 ) and in one of their ancient Midrashes F8, or expositions, it is interpreted of the King Messiah: and so R. Abraham Seba F9, on those words, "from thence is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel", ( Genesis 49:24 ) ; observes, the King Messiah does not come but by the worthiness of Jacob, as it is said, "thou sawest, till that stone cut out without hands, because of Jacob". This is said to be "cut out without hands"; that is, the hands of men, as Saadiah and Jacchiades explain it; not cut out by workmen, as stones usually are out of quarries; but was taken out by an unseen hand, and by invisible power, even purely divine: this may point at the wondrous incarnation of Christ, who was made of a woman, of a virgin, without the help of a man, by the power of God; see ( Hebrews 8:2 ) ( 9:11 ) , and at his kingdom, which was like a single stone at first, very small, and was cut out and separated from the world, and set up and maintained, not by human, but divine power, and being of a spiritual nature, ( 2 Corinthians 5:1 ) ( Colossians 2:11 ) : which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and
brake them to pieces;
this seems to represent this image as in a plain, when, from a mountain hanging over it, a stone is taken by an invisible hand, and rolled upon it; which falling on its feet, breaks them to pieces, and in course the whole statue falls, and is broken to shivers; this respects what is yet to be done in the latter day, when Christ will take to himself his great power, and reign, and subdue, and destroy the ten kings or kingdoms that are given to antichrist, and him himself, and the remainder of the several monarchies, and in which they will all end.
F5 (tywh hzx) "videns eras", Montanus, Michaelis.
F6 Zohar in Gen. fol. 86. 2.
F7 Pirke Eliezer, c. 11. fol. 12. 2.
F8 Bemidbar Rabba, sect. 13. fol. 209. 4.
F9 Tzeror Hammor, fol. 63. 2.