Daniel 11

Listen to Daniel 11

The Kings of the South and the North

1 "And as for me, 1in the first year of 2Darius the Mede, I stood up to confirm and strengthen him.
2 "And now I will show you 3the truth. Behold, three more kings shall arise in Persia, and a fourth shall be far richer than all of them. And when he has become strong through his riches, he shall stir up all against the kingdom of Greece.
3 Then 4a mighty king shall arise, who shall rule with great dominion and 5do as he wills.
4 And as soon as he has arisen, 6his kingdom shall be broken and divided 7toward the 8four winds of heaven, but 9not to his posterity, nor according to the authority with which he ruled, for his kingdom shall be plucked up and go to others besides these.
5 "Then the king of the south shall be strong, but one of his princes shall be stronger than he 10and shall rule, and his authority shall be a great authority.
6 After some years 11they shall make an alliance, and the daughter of the king of the south shall come to the king of the north to make an agreement. But she shall not retain the strength of her arm, and he and his arm shall not endure, but she shall be given up, and her attendants, he who fathered her, and he who supported[a] her in those times.
7 "And from a branch from her roots one shall arise in his place. He shall come against the army and enter the 12fortress of the king of the north, and he shall deal with them and shall prevail.
8 He shall also carry off to Egypt their gods with their metal images and their precious 13vessels of silver and gold, and for some years he shall refrain from attacking the king of the north.
9 Then the latter shall come into the realm of the king of the south but shall return to his own land.
10 "His sons shall wage war and assemble a multitude of great forces, which shall keep coming 14and overflow and pass through, and again shall carry the war as far as his 15fortress.
11 Then the king of the south, 16moved with rage, shall come out and fight against the king of the north. 17And he shall raise a great multitude, but it shall be given into his hand.
12 And when the multitude is taken away, his heart shall be exalted, and he shall cast down tens of thousands, but he shall not prevail.
13 For the king of the north shall again 18raise a multitude, greater than the first. And 19after some years[b] he shall come on with a great army and abundant supplies.
14 "In those times many shall rise against the king of the south, and the violent among your own people shall lift themselves up in order to fulfill the vision, but 20they shall fail.
15 Then the king of the north shall come and 21throw up siegeworks and take a well-fortified city. And the forces of the south shall not stand, or even his best troops, for there shall be no strength to stand.
16 But he who comes against him shall 22do as he wills, and 23none shall stand before him. And he shall stand in 24the glorious land, with destruction in his hand.
17 He shall 25set his face to come with the strength of his whole kingdom, and he shall bring terms of an agreement and perform them. He shall give him the daughter of women to destroy the kingdom,[c] but it shall not stand or be to his advantage.
18 Afterward he shall turn his face to the coastlands and shall capture many of them, but a commander shall put an end to his insolence. Indeed,[d] he 26shall turn his insolence back upon him.
19 Then he shall turn his face back toward the 27fortresses of his own land, but he shall 28stumble and fall, 29and shall not be found.
20 "Then shall arise in his place one who shall send an 30exactor of tribute for the glory of the kingdom. But within a few days he shall be broken, neither in anger nor in battle.
21 In his place shall arise a contemptible person to whom royal majesty has not been given. 31He shall come in without warning and obtain the kingdom 32by flatteries.
22 Armies shall be 33utterly swept away before him and broken, even the prince of the covenant.
23 And from the time that an alliance is made with him he shall act deceitfully, and he shall become strong with a small people.
24 34Without warning he shall come into 35the richest parts[e] of the province, and he shall do what neither his fathers nor his fathers' fathers have done, scattering among them plunder, spoil, and goods. He shall devise plans against strongholds, but only for a time.
25 And he shall stir up his power and his heart against 36the king of the south with a great army. And the king of the south shall wage war with an exceedingly great and mighty army, but he shall not stand, for plots shall be devised against him.
26 Even those who eat his food shall break him. His army shall be 37swept away, and many shall fall down slain.
27 And as for the two kings, their hearts shall be bent on doing evil. They shall speak lies at the same table, but to no avail, for 38the end is yet to be at the time appointed.
28 And he shall return to his land with great wealth, but his heart shall be set against the holy covenant. And he shall work his will and return to his own land.
29 "At the time appointed he shall return and come into the south, but it shall not be this time as it was before.
30 For ships of 39Kittim shall come against him, and he shall be afraid and withdraw, and shall turn back and 40be enraged and 41take action against the holy covenant. He shall turn back and pay attention to those who forsake the holy covenant.
31 Forces from him shall appear and 42profane the temple and fortress, and shall take away the regular burnt offering. And 43they shall set up the abomination that makes desolate.
32 He shall seduce with flattery those who violate the covenant, but the people who know their God shall stand firm and take action.
33 44And the wise among the people shall make many understand, though for some days they shall stumble by sword and flame, by captivity and plunder.
34 When they stumble, they shall receive a little help. And many shall join themselves to them with flattery,
35 and some of the wise shall stumble, so that they may be refined, 45purified, and 46made white, until 47the time of the end, 48for it still awaits the appointed time.
36 "And the king shall 49do as he wills. 50He shall exalt himself and magnify himself above every god, 51and shall speak astonishing things against 52the God of gods. 53He shall prosper 54till the indignation is accomplished; for what is decreed shall be done.
37 He shall pay no attention to the gods of his fathers, or to the one beloved by women. He shall not pay attention to any other god, for 55he shall magnify himself above all.
38 He shall honor the god of fortresses instead of these. A god whom his fathers did not know he shall honor 56with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts.
39 He shall deal with the strongest fortresses with the help of a foreign god. Those who acknowledge him he shall load with honor. He shall make them rulers over many and 57shall divide the land for a price.[f]
40 58"At the time of the end, the king of the south shall attack[g] him, but the king of the north shall rush upon him 59like a whirlwind, with chariots and horsemen, and with many ships. And he shall come into countries and 60shall overflow and pass through.
41 He shall come into 61the glorious land. And tens of thousands shall fall, but these shall be delivered out of his hand: 62Edom and 63Moab and the main part of the 64Ammonites.
42 He shall stretch out his hand against the countries, and the land of Egypt shall not escape.
43 He shall become ruler of the treasures of gold and of silver, and all the precious things of Egypt, and the 65Libyans and the 66Cushites shall follow in his train.
44 But news from the east and the north shall alarm him, and he shall go out with great fury to destroy and devote many to destruction.
45 And he shall pitch his palatial tents between the sea and the glorious holy mountain. Yet he shall come to his end, with none to help him.

Daniel 11 Commentary

Chapter 11

The vision of the Scriptures of truth.

Verses 1-30 The angel shows Daniel the succession of the Persian and Grecian empires. The kings of Egypt and Syria are noticed: Judea was between their dominions, and affected by their contests. From ver. ( 5-30 ) , is generally considered to relate to the events which came to pass during the continuance of these governments; and from ver. ( 21 ) , to relate to Antiochus Epiphanes, who was a cruel and violent persecutor of the Jews. See what decaying, perishing things worldly pomp and possessions are, and the power by which they are gotten. God, in his providence, sets up one, and pulls down another, as he pleases. This world is full of wars and fightings, which come from men's lusts. All changes and revolutions of states and kingdoms, and every event, are plainly and perfectly foreseen by God. No word of God shall fall to the ground; but what he has designed, what he has declared, shall infallibly come to pass. While the potsherds of the earth strive with each other, they prevail and are prevailed against, deceive and are deceived; but those who know God will trust in him, and he will enable them to stand their ground, bear their cross, and maintain their conflict.

Verses 31-45 The remainder of this prophecy is very difficult, and commentators differ much respecting it. From Antiochus the account seems to pass to antichrist. Reference seems to be made to the Roman empire, the fourth monarchy, in its pagan, early Christian, and papal states. The end of the Lord's anger against his people approaches, as well as the end of his patience towards his enemies. If we would escape the ruin of the infidel, the idolater, the superstitious and cruel persecutor, as well as that of the profane, let us make the oracles of God our standard of truth and of duty, the foundation of our hope, and the light of our paths through this dark world, to the glorious inheritance above.

Cross References 66

Footnotes 7

Chapter Summary


In this chapter the angel makes good his promise to Daniel, that he would show him what was written in the Scripture of truth, concerning the monarchies of the earth, and what would befall his people the Jews in the latter days; and after he had observed that he had strengthened and confirmed Darius the Mede, who was the first king of the then present flourishing monarchy, Da 11:1, he foretells the number of the kings of Persia, and particularly describes the fourth, Da 11:2 predicts the rise of the Grecian monarchy under Alexander the great, and the disposition of it after his death, Da 11:3,4 and then proceeds to give an account of the two principal kingdoms of that monarchy, into which it was divided, the Seleucidae and Lagidae; and of their kings, the king of Egypt, and the king of Syria, under the names of the king of the south, and the king of the north, and of their power and agreement, Da 11:5,6 and then of their various wars between themselves and others, and the success of them, Da 11:7-20, and particularly of Antiochus, his character and manner of coming to the kingdom, and of his wars with the king of Egypt, and the issue of them, Da 11:21-29 and of his persecution of the Jews, and the distress he should bring on them, and the use it should be of to the godly among them, Da 11:30-35, and then his antitype, antichrist, is described; the western antichrist, his character and actions, Da 11:36-39 then the eastern, his power, wealth and riches, hail and rain, Da 11:40-45.

Daniel 11 Commentaries

The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.