Daniel 12:3

3 1And those who are wise 2shall shine like the brightness of the sky above;[a] and 3those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.

Daniel 12:3 Meaning and Commentary

Daniel 12:3

And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the
That are wise, not in things natural and civil, but in things spiritual; who are wise unto salvation; that are wise to know themselves, their state and condition by nature; their impurity and impotence; the insufficiency of their own righteousness; the exceeding sinfulness of sin, and the dangerous circumstances they are in; that are wise to know Christ, and him crucified; to believe in him, and trust in him for everlasting life and salvation: these at the resurrection shall shine, both in body and soul; their bodies shall be fashioned like to the glorious body of Christ; their souls shall be filled with perfect light and knowledge, and be completely holy, without any sin upon them; and this light and glory that will be upon both soul and body will be like the brightness of the heavens when the sun is risen; yea, it will be like the brightness and glory of the sun itself, as our Lord affirms; having, as it seems, respect to this passage, ( Matthew 13:43 ) . Some render it, "they that instruct" F9; or make others wise, and so restrain it to ministers of the word; but the more general sense is best; and, besides, they are more particularly described in the next clause: and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars forever and ever;
or, "that justify many" F11; that teach the doctrine of a sinner's free justification by the righteousness of Christ; that lead and direct souls sensible of sin, and of the weakness of their own righteousness, to the righteousness of Christ, as being that only which justifies before God; otherwise it is God alone that justifies men, by imputing the righteousness of his Son unto them: but these show men the way of justification, or that which God takes to justify sinners; and this being the principal doctrine of the GospeL, they are denominated from it; and no man deserves the name of a Gospel minister that does not preach it, though this is not all that they preach; they preach all other doctrines of the Gospel in connection with it, and also instruct men thus justified to live soberly, righteously, and godly: now, as these are stars in the church of Christ below, who receive their light from Christ the sun of righteousness, and communicate it to his people; so they will continue stars in the Millennium state, and appear exceeding glorious, having the glory of God and Christ upon them, and not only then, but to all eternity. These words are applied to the days of the Messiah by the Jews F12.


F9 (Mylykvm) "erudiunt", Munster; "erudientes", Junius & Tremellius; "qui alios instituerint", Grotius.
F11 (yqydum) "justificantes", Pagninus, Montanus, Junius & Tremellius; "qui justificaverint", Calvin, Piscator.
F12 Shemot Rabba sect. 15. fol. 102. 4.

Daniel 12:3 In-Context

1 "At that time shall arise Michael, the great prince who has charge of your people. And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was a nation till that time. But at that time your people shall be delivered, everyone whose name shall be found written in the book.
2 And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.
3 And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.
4 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."
5 Then I, Daniel, looked, and behold, two others stood, one on this bank of the stream and one on that bank of the stream.

Cross References 3

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Hebrew the expanse; compare Genesis 1:6-8
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.