"In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man,1 coming2 with the clouds of heaven.3 He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence.
He was given authority,4 glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language worshiped him.5 His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom6 is one that will never be destroyed.7
"I, Daniel, was troubled in spirit, and the visions that passed through my mind disturbed me.816
I approached one of those standing there and asked him the true meaning of all this. "So he told me and gave me the interpretation9 of these things:
'The four great beasts are four kingdoms that will rise from the earth.
But the saints10 of the Most High will receive the kingdom11 and will possess it forever--yes, for ever and ever.'1219
"Then I wanted to know the true meaning of the fourth beast, which was different from all the others and most terrifying, with its iron teeth and bronze claws--the beast that crushed and devoured its victims and trampled underfoot whatever was left.
I also wanted to know about the ten horns13 on its head and about the other horn that came up, before which three of them fell--the horn that looked more imposing than the others and that had eyes and a mouth that spoke boastfully.1421
As I watched, this horn was waging war against the saints and defeating them,1522
until the Ancient of Days came and pronounced judgment in favor of the saints of the Most High, and the time came when they possessed the kingdom.1623
"He gave me this explanation: 'The fourth beast is a fourth kingdom that will appear on earth. It will be different from all the other kingdoms and will devour the whole earth, trampling it down and crushing it.17