Pagan and Papal Rome
Desolations of Pagan Rome
And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all [these things] must come to pass, but the end is not yet. Matthew 24:6.
- To see that when a nation such as Rome desolates another nation such as Judea, it will also be desolated
- To behold once again God’s ability to predestine events by His divine foreknowledge
- To watch as an empire melts into decay and changes its nature
What was the cry of God’s people under pagan nations? Psalms 74:10, 3 i.e. verses 1-10.
How did Gabriel address the removal of pagan desolations? Daniel 12:31 i.e. Daniel 8:13.
“….sacrifice is a word erroneously supplied;… it should be desolation; and that the expression de a desolating power, of which the abomination of desolation is but a counterpart, and to which it succeeds in point of time. The “daily” (continual, perpetual) desolation was paganism; the “abomination of desolation” is the papacy.
“How was the daily or paganism, taken away? As this is spoken of in connection with the placing or setting up of the abomination of desolation, or the papacy, it must denote….. an eradication of paganism from all the elements of the empire that the way be all open for the papal abomination to arise and assert its arrogant claims.” Daniel and the Revelation p.255.1-2
How will God deal with desolating nations who have desolated Judea (Jeremiah 30:16.) and in His foreknowledge regarding the Roman Empire? How long was it given to do its desolations? Daniel 11:24 (last part), Compare verse 29.
“…after the victory of Octavius over Antony at Actium, which placed him as sole ruler on the Roman throne.” Haskell’s Prophetic Waymarks p.293.0
“This battle doubtless marks the commencement of the “time” mentioned in verse 24…..From B.C. 31, a prophetic time, or 360 years, would bring us to A.D. 330. And it hence becomes a noteworthy fact that the seat of the empire was removed from Rome to Constantinople by Constantine the Great in that very year.” Daniel and the Revelation 249.1
How did that move to Constantinople indicate the unfolding of the events of Daniel 11:29-31?
“The removal of the seat of the empire to Constantinople was the signal for the downfall of the empire.” Daniel and the Revelation p.252.4
As Daniel 11:29 expressed the weakened condition of the Roman Empire, how did verse 30 (first part) introduce defeating warfare?
“The close of the third century of the Christian era found the government of Rome greatly weakened. The evils of the empire, its oppression and cruelty, made it almost impossible for the emperors to control affairs. …. Barbarian hordes pressed the empire on all sides, and the downfall of Rome was imminent.” Haskell’s Prophetic Waymarks pp.288.2-289
“What were the ships of Chittim that came against this power, and when was this movement made? What country or power is meant by Chittim?…. namely, the coast and islands of the Mediterranean…. the mind is carried to a definite and celebrated city situated in that land; that is Carthage. Was ever a naval warfare, with Carthage as a base of operations, waged against the Roman Empire? We have but to think of the terrible onslaught of the Vandals upon Rome under the fierce Genseric…..from the port of Carthage at the head of his numerous and well-disciplined naval forces, he spread consternation through all the maritime provinces of the empire…..The years A.D. 428-468 mark the career of Genseric.” Daniel and the Revelation p.253.2-3
The Barbarian Vandals from the South, where else did Barbarian hordes come from and ultimately obliterate paganism from the Empire? Daniel 11:31.
“Following in due time, as the next remarkable revolution, came the interruptions of the Barbarians of the North….” Daniel and the Revelation p.253.4
“Rome was sacked by the Goths and Vandals, and the imperial power of the West ceased through the conquest of Rome by Odoacer.” Daniel and the Revelation p.254.4
“The last contest with paganism was in 508 when the French and the Britons accepted Christianity; the “daily” spoken of in Daniel had been taken away. By 538 the way was clear for the papacy to sit enthroned in Rome. ….The new religion-Christianity-we have seen mingled with paganism, which it crushed, and gave birth to the papacy.” Haskell’s Prophetic Waymarks pp.299.3- 300
Having so vividly predicted the details of the rise and demise of Rome, what does this reveal of the predestination qualities of God? Romans 8:29; 9:10-18.
“In the council of heaven, provision was made that men, though transgressors, should not perish in their disobedience, but, through faith in Christ as their substitute and surety, might become the elect of God, predestinated unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself according to the good pleasure of His will. God wills that all men should be saved; for ample provision has been made, in giving His only-begotten Son to pay man’s ransom. Those who perish will perish because they refuse to be adopted as children of God through Christ Jesus.” (Signs of the Times Jan. 2, 1893) SDA Bible Commentary Volume 6 p. 1114.5
Consider the awesome God we worship who demonstrates that He knows all things before they transpire. Knowing this does He not know of you, dear student? Let us be comforted by Psalms 139:1-6
For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye. Zech 2:8.
- To reflect on the previous information on the rise of the papacy
- To learn how human interpretations and opinions become despotic elements of persecution
- To behold the papal oppressions as generated by Satan who would desolate all true believers
How were papal ideologies born in the early Christian church? 2 Corinthians 10:3-5; Galatians 6:8.
“What was the origin of the great apostasy? How did the church first depart from the simplicity of the gospel? By conforming to the practices of paganism, to facilitate the acceptance of Christianity by the heathen.” Great Controversy p.384.5
What weaknesses of the natural heart are all Christians vulnerable to fall for and thus fall for deceptions as did the early church? Jeremiah 17:9, 10.
“The very beginning of the evil was a neglect of watchfulness and secret prayer, then came a neglect of other religious duties, and thus the way was opened for all the sins that followed. Every Christian will be assailed by the allurements of the world, the clamors of the carnal nature, and the direct temptations of Satan. No one is safe. No matter what our experience has been, no matter how high our station, we need to watch and pray continually. We must be daily controlled by the Spirit of God or we are controlled by Satan.” Testimonies for the Church Volume 5 p. 102.1
Meeting the heresy of Arianism, what plausible conclusions were drawn in the church? 1 Timothy 4:1.
“Arius….sprung his doctrine upon the world, occasioning so fierce a controversy in the Christian church that a general council was called at Nicea, by the emperor Constantine A.D. 325 to consider and adjust it.” Daniel and the Revelation p.127.3
“It was especially for the purpose of exterminating this heresy that Justinian decreed the pope to be the head of the church and the corrector of heretics.” Daniel and the Revelation p.254.2
Having finally established the papal abominations and papal domination shown in the last lesson, how did these abominations become destructive? Psalms 37:32.
“It required a desperate struggle for those who would be faithful to stand firm against the deceptions and abominations which were disguised in sacerdotal garments and introduced into the church. The Bible was not accepted as the standard of faith. The doctrine of religious freedom was termed heresy, and its upholders were hated and proscribed.” Great Controversy p.45.2
“The early Christians were indeed a peculiar people. Their blameless deportment and unswerving faith were a continual reproof that disturbed the sinner’s peace…..they were a terror to evildoers wherever their character and doctrines were known. Therefore they were hated by the wicked,…… For the same reason that Cain slew Abel, did those who sought to throw off the restraint of the Holy Spirit, put to death God’s people.” Great Controversy p.46.2
Having described the placement of the abomination that maketh desolate in Daniel 11:31, what did he say his papal abomination will do? Daniel 11:32.
“Those that forsake the covenant, the holy Scriptures, and think more of the decrees of popes and the decision of councils than they do of the word of God, – these shall he, the pope, corrupt by flatteries, that is, lead them on in their partisan zeal for himself by the bestowment of wealth, position, and honours.
“At the same time a people shall exist who knew their God; and these shall be strong and do exploits……Prominent among these stand the Waldenses, Albigeneses, Huguenots, etc.” Daniel and the Revelation pp.262.5 – 263
How were these strong exploiting people, who kept pure religion alive in the earth through the Dark Ages, treated? Daniel 11:33.
“The long period of papal persecution against those who were struggling to maintain the truth and instruct their fellow men in ways of righteousness, is here brought to view. The number of the days during which they were thus to fall is given in Daniel 7:25; 12:7; Revelation 12:6, 14; 13:5. The period is called, “a time, times, and the dividing of time;” “a time, times, and a half;” “a thousand two hundred and three score days;” and “forty and two months.” It is the 1,260 years of papal supremacy.” Daniel and the Revelation p.263.3
Referring to this dreadful time of tribulation for His people, what did Jesus say which harmonised with Gabriel’s wards? Matthew 24:21, 22. i.e. Daniel 11:34.
“The persecution of the church did not continue throughout the entire period of the 1260 years. God in mercy to His people cut short the time of their fiery trial. In foretelling the “great tribulation” to befall the church, the Saviour said: “Except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.” Matthew 24:22. Through the influence of the Reformation the persecution was brought to an end prior to 1798.” Great Controversy p.266.4
How do the descriptions of Gabriel in verses 34 and 35 of Daniel 11 reveal the history of the ups and downs of the Reformation from the fourteenth to the eighteenth Centuries? Daniel 11:34, 35.
“The Great Reformation by Luther and his coworkers furnished the help here foretold…..But when they should be helped, and the cause began to become popular, many were to cleave unto them with flatteries or embrace the cause from unworthy motives, be insincere, hollow hearted, and speak smooth and friendly words through a policy of self-interest.
“Though restrained, the spirit of persecution was not destroyed. It broke out wherever there was opportunity….And this condition of affairs was to last more or less to the time of the end.” Daniel and the Revelation pp.263.5 and 264.2
A lesson to learn to not fall for the plausible reasonings of the enemy.
“Those who follow their own mind and walk in their own way will form crooked characters. Vain doctrines and subtle sentiments will be introduced with plausible presentations, to deceive, if possible, the very elect. Are church members building upon the Rock? The storm is coming, the storm that will try every man’s faith, of what sort it is. Believers must now be firmly rooted in Christ, or else they will be led astray by some phase of error. Let your faith be substantiated by the Word of God. Grasp firmly the living testimony of truth. Have faith in Christ as a personal Saviour. He has been and ever will be our Rock of Ages. The testimony of the Spirit of God is true. Change not your faith for any phase of doctrine, however pleasing it may appear, that will seduce the soul.” Evangelism p.361.4
Therefore all they that devour thee shall be devoured; and all thine adversaries, every one of them, shall go into captivity; and they that spoil thee shall be a spoil, and all that prey upon thee will I give for a prey. Jeremiah 30:16.
- To see that our key text is true in God’s dealing with the abomination of desolation
- To identify the agency God used to deal with the papacy and inflict a deadly wound upon her
- To behold the cessation of persecution by the papacy after 1798
Looking back over the history of this lesson, how did God deal with one nation after another when their cup of iniquity was full? Jeremiah 30:16; Jeremiah 50:9, 10; Ezekiel 30:10, 11.
“In that last night of mad folly, Belshazzar and his lords had filled up the measure of their guilt and the guilt of the Chaldean kingdom. No longer could God’s restraining hand ward off the impending evil. Through manifold providences, God had sought to teach them reverence for His law. “We would have healed Babylon,” He declared of those whose judgment was now reaching unto heaven, “but she is not healed.” Jeremiah 51:9. Because of the strange perversity of the human heart, God had at last found it necessary to pass the irrevocable sentence. Belshazzar was to fall, and his kingdom was to pass into other hands.” Prophets and Kings p. 530.3
“The army of Cyrus now stood under the walls of the palace;” Prophets and Kings p.531.2
As the Roman church was permitted to conquer pagan Rome, what was the doom foretold for her? Revelation 13:10 i.e. Jeremiah 30:16.
“It was inflicted when the pope was taken prisoner by Berthier, the French general, and the papal government was for a time abolished, in 1798. Stripped of his power, both civil and ecclesiastical, the captive pope, Pius VI, died in exile at Valence in France, Aug 29, 1799.” Daniel and the Revelation p.526.0
As a little help came to preserve the existence of the faithful by the rise of the Reformation, what nation is brought into focus to halt the devastation of papal Rome? Daniel 11:35, 36.
“Evidently a new power is here introduced, and it must be an atheistical power, in the fullest sense of that term, inasmuch as it was to regard neither the God of heaven nor any God; and this development is to be met about the year 1798 which period is referred to as the time of the end.
“France is the only nation in the world concerning which the authentic record survives that as a nation she lifted her hand in open rebellion against the Author of the universe.” International Sabbath-School Quarterly The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter 1904 – Lesson 10, note 6.
What other and still more striking specifications were fulfilled in this power? Daniel 11:37.
“The Hebrew word for woman was also translated wife…. “this passage would be more properly rendered ‘The desire of wives.’ This would seem to indicate that this government, at the same time it declared that God did not exist, would trample underfoot the law which God had given to regulate the marriage institution…..Intimately connected with these laws affecting religion was that which reduced the union of marriage….to the state of a mere civil contract of a transitory character, which any two persons might engage in and cast loose at pleasure, when their taste was changed or their appetite gratified…. Sophie Arnoult, an actress famous for the witty things she said, described the republican marriage as the sacrament of adultery.” Daniel and the Revelation pp.266.4-267
Having desolated every Christian principle espoused by both Papal and Protestant faiths; and denouncing all gods, what was meant with Daniel 11:38?
“We meet a seeming contradiction in this verse. How can a nation disregard every god, and yet honour the god of forces?…. it might for a time disregard all gods, and then subsequently introduce another worship, and regard the god of forces. Did such a change occur in France at this time? It did…. In 1794 the worship of the goddess of Reason was introduced….” Daniel and the Revelation pp.268.7-269
“Truly this was a strange god, whom the fathers of that generation knew not. No such deity had ever before been set up as an object of adoration. And well might it be called the god of forces; for the object of the movement was to cause the people to renew their covenant and repeat their vows for the prosperity of the armies of France.” Daniel and the Revelation p.271.1
With this background of desolation concluded in verse 39, what event identified the time appointed as the time of the end? Daniel 11:40 (first half).
“On the 5th of March, 1798, Bonaparte received the decree of the French Directory relative to the expedition against Egypt. He left Paris May 3, and set sail from Toulon on the 19th, with a large naval armament, consisting of 500 sail, carrying 40,000 soldiers and 10,000 sailors. July 5, Alexandria was taken and fortified. On September of this same year, the sultan of Turkey declared war against France, Thus the King of the North (Turkey) came against him (France) in the same year that the King of the South (Egypt) “pushed,” and all at the time called for in the prophecy, – the time of the end.” International Sabbath-School Quarterly The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter 1904 – Lesson 11 note 1.
As verified in the previous question that 1798 was the commencement date of the time of the end, how can we conclude that papal persecution would cease at that time according to Daniel 11:35?
Refer to note for Question 2 of this lesson.
Ponder the following:
“The periods here mentioned–“forty and two months,” and “a thousand two hundred and threescore days”–are the same, alike representing the time in which the church of Christ was to suffer oppression from Rome. The 1260 years of papal supremacy began in A.D. 538, and would therefore terminate in 1798. (See Appendix note for page 54.) At that time a French army entered Rome and made the pope a prisoner, and he died in exile. Though a new pope was soon afterward elected, the papal hierarchy has never since been able to wield the power which it before possessed.” Great Controversy p.266.3
Having followed the vision given to Daniel to this point, we have seen the darkness of human turmoil, war, and persecution overruled by Jesus with Gabriel. We marvel to behold the following:
“In the annals of human history, the growth of nations, the rise and fall of empires, appear as if dependent on the will and prowess of man; the shaping of events seems, to a great degree, to be determined by his power, ambition, or caprice. But in the word of God the curtain is drawn aside, and we behold, above, behind, and through all the play and counterplay of human interest and power and passions, the agencies of the All-merciful One, silently, patiently working out the counsels of His own will.” Prophets and Kings p.499.4
The LORD hath broken the staff of the wicked, [and] the sceptre of the rulers. Isaiah 14:5.
- To recount the demonstration of God dealing with emperors and kings by orchestrating their hunger for conquest for His purposes
- To see Him doing it again to the monarch of France
- To observe the return of the Kings of the North and South
In our study of the prophecy of Daniel, what aspect of the Day Star arising in our hearts can be addressed? 2 Corinthians 4:6; Isaiah 60:2.
“This lesson is taught in a wonderful symbolic representation given to the prophet Ezekiel [chapters 1 and 10]. . . . A number of wheels, intersecting one another, were moved by four living beings. . . . The wheels were so complicated in arrangement that at first sight they appeared to be in confusion; but they moved in perfect harmony. Heavenly beings, sustained and guided by the hand beneath the wings of the cherubim, were impelling these wheels; above them upon the sapphire throne, was the Eternal One; and round about the throne a rainbow, the emblem of divine mercy. As the wheellike complications were under the guidance of the hand beneath the wings of the cherubim, so the complicated play of human events is under divine control. Amidst the strife and tumult of nations, He that sitteth above the cherubim still guides the affairs of the earth.” Amazing Grace p.50.4
Reflecting back on Daniel 10:13, 21, and Daniel 11:1, and arriving at this stage of national affairs, how does Jesus emerge as a light to illumine the darkness surrounding us? Matthew 28:20.
“Fearful perils are before those who bear responsibilities in the cause of God– perils the thought of which make me tremble. But the word comes, “My hand is upon the wheel, and I will not allow men to control My work for these last days. My hand is turning the wheel, and My providence will continue to work out the divine plans, irrespective of human inventions.” Evangelism p.65.1
“In the great closing work we shall meet with perplexities that we know not how to deal with, but let us not forget that the three great powers of heaven are working, that a divine hand is on the wheel, and that God will bring His purposes to pass”.–Manuscript 118, 1902. Evangelism p.65.2
As atheistical France arose so God could inflict a fatal wound upon the papacy, how does He deal with the atrocities of France and Napoleon? Daniel 11:40.
“While the nations rejected God’s principles, and in this rejection wrought their own ruin, it was still manifest that the divine, overruling purpose was working through all their movements.” Education p.177.1
How did France get involved with the King of the South and the King of the North?
“….he (Napoleon) saw a far-off land, where a glory was to be won which would gain a new charm in the eyes of his countrymen by the romance and mystery which hung upon the scene. Egypt, the land of the Pharaohs and the Ptolemies, would be a noble field for new triumphs.” Daniel and the Revelation p.274.3
“….on September2 of …1798, the sultan of Turkey, under feelings of jealousy against France…and exasperated that Egypt, so long a semi-dependency of the Ottoman Empire, should be transformed into a French province, declared war against France.” Daniel and the Revelation p.275.2
How were the ambitions of Napoleon systematically brought to naught? Isaiah 13:11.
“Egypt, desiring to escape from Turkish rule, preferred to be under the domination of the French. But the tide of events turned otherwise. The English, as the ally of the Turks, determined to wrest Egypt from the French. After a series of battles, in which the French were worsted by the combined forces of the English and the Turks, the whole of the French army was shut up in Cairo and Alexandria. Cairo capitulated June 27, 1801, and Alexandria on September 2. Four weeks later (October 1), the preliminaries of peace were signed at London.” International Sabbath-School Quarterly The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter 1904 – Lesson 11 note 3
What did we learn as to how God deals with kings and what nation did He use to weaken Napoleon? Jeremiah 3:14, 16.
“The situation of Napoleon began to grow precarious. The French fleet, which was his only channel of communication with France (while in Egypt), was destroyed by the English under Nelson at Aboukir;” Daniel and the Revelation p.275.2
“On the 18th of March, 1799, the siege of Acre was begun. After the siege had been kept up sixty days, it was raised, and Napoleon sounded, for the first time in his career, the note of retreat, and on the 21st of May commenced to retrace his steps to Egypt. Turkey (the King of the North) came off the victor in that struggle, driving the French back into Egypt. Thus the King of the North (Turkey) “overflowed and passed over.” International Sabbath-School Quarterly The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter – Lesson 11 note 1 (last part).
What was repeated with this lesser nation of France, which had taken place to all previous nations? Jeremiah 51:11.
“Every nation that has come upon the stage of action been permitted to occupy its place on the earth, that it might be seen whether it would fulfill the purpose of “the Watcher and the Holy One.” Prophecy has traced the rise and fall of the world’s great empires–Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome. With each of these, as with nations of less power, history repeated itself. Each had its period of test, each failed, its glory faded, its power departed, and its place was occupied by another.” Education p.176.4
- Let us never forget the oft repeated lesson contained in this vision that:
“The Lord hath broken the staff of the wicked, and the scepter of the rulers.” Isaiah 14:5.
- Let us remember that when we have to stand before rulers.
Every word of God [is] pure: he [is] a shield unto them that put their trust in him. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar. Proverbs 30:5, 6.
- To show from Scripture that in correct interpretation of prophecy we must use meanings consistently
- In applying that principle, to show that the territory of North and South does not alter at any time throughout the vision to mean literal territory at the beginning and symbolic at the end
- To confirm that Turkey and Syria still prove true in the last days fulfillment of Daniel 11
What is written regarding the interpretation of prophecy? 2 Peter 1:20, 21.
“No man is safe for a day or an hour without prayer. Especially should we entreat the Lord for wisdom to understand His word. Here are revealed the wiles of the tempter and the means by which he may be successfully resisted. Satan is an expert in quoting Scripture, placing his own interpretation upon passages, by which he hopes to cause us to stumble. We should study the Bible with humility of heart, never losing sight of our dependence upon God. While we must constantly guard against the devices of Satan, we should pray in faith continually: “Lead us not into temptation.” Great Controversy p.530.2
In reading the Bible what principle is to be adopted in seeking its correct meaning? Proverbs 30:5, 6; Isaiah 34:16; Deuteronomy 4:2.
“The truths most plainly revealed in the Bible have been involved in doubt and darkness by learned men, who, with a pretense of great wisdom, teach that the Scriptures have a mystical, a secret, spiritual meaning not apparent in the language employed. These men are false teachers. It was to such a class that Jesus declared: “Ye know not the Scriptures, neither the power of God.” Mark 12:24. The language of the Bible should be explained according to its obvious meaning, unless a symbol or figure is employed. Christ has given the promise: “If any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine.” John 7:17. If men would but take the Bible as it reads, if there were no false teachers to mislead and confuse their minds, a work would be accomplished that would make angels glad and that would bring into the fold of Christ thousands upon thousands who are now wandering in error.” Great Controversy p.598.3
Are there any symbols used in the prophecy of Daniel 11? Examine some examples. Daniel 11:1-3, 14 etc.
“We now enter upon a prophecy of future events, clothed not in figures and symbols, as in the visions of chapters 2, 7, and 8, but given mostly in plain language. Many of the signal events of the world’s history, from the days of Daniel to the end of the world are here brought to view.” Daniel and the Revelation p.222.2
Arriving at the fall of Alexander the Great and the distribution of the empire to the four directions of the compass under his generals, we saw North and South of Palestine consolidating. Daniel 11:6. How consistently are we to hold to this literal territory in the remaining vision?
“The King of the North and the King of the South are many times referred to in the remaining portion of this chapter….
“During the wars and revolutions which for long ages succeeded, these geographical boundaries were frequently changed or obliterated; old ones were wiped out, and new ones instituted. But whatever changes might occur, these first divisions of the empire must determine the names which these portions of territory should ever afterward bear, or we have no standard by which to test the application of the prophecy….”Daniel and the Revelation p.224.2-3
Therefore, having spent many lessons on Rome in its pagan and then its papal state, and also France in its attack on the papacy where no mention of North or South was much made, has the return of North and South in Daniel 11:40 altered any meaning of literal application?
“After a long interval, the King of the South and the King of the North again appear on the stage of action. We have met with nothing to indicate that we are to look to any localities for these powers other than those which shortly after the death of Alexander constituted respectively the Southern and Northern divisions of his empire. The King of the South was at that time Egypt, and the King of the North was Syria, including Thrace and Asia Minor. Egypt is still by common agreement, the King of the South, while the territory which at first constituted the King of the North has been….wholly included within the dominions of the sultan of Turkey. To Egypt and Turkey, then, in connection with the power last under consideration, we must look for the fulfillment of the words before us.” Daniel and the Revelation p.273.3
Why was this vision given? Daniel 10:14 Casting a brief view ahead to the very end therefore, what consistent mention does Gabriel make from Daniel 11:40-45 regarding the King of the North?
“As Dr. Clarke said of the 44th verse in 1825, we can now say of this 45th verse, – it is yet unfulfilled. All except the closing verse of this remarkable chapter has now been wrought out in history. We must look to Turkey to fulfill the movement predicted in this verse.” International Sabbath-School Quarterly The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter 1904 – Lesson 11 note 5.
“The expression, “none shall help him,” clearly implies that he has previously been helped by other powers. In the war with France (1798-1801), England and Russia assisted the sultan. In the war between Turkey and Egypt (1838-1840), England, Russia, Austria, and Prussia intervened in behalf of Turkey. In the Crimean War (1853-1856), England, France, and Sardinia supported the Turks. In the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78, the great powers of Europe interfered to arrest the progress of Russia.” International Sabbath-School Quarterly The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter 1904 – Lesson 11 note 6.
How is Turkey so important in today’s 2014 events? Of what empire is it still regarded as important to the Islamic world?
“Since the death of Mohammed, AD 622, his followers, the wild hordes of barbarians, were under no general civil government. Gibbon refers to them as “this shipwreck of nations.” The first king who recognised those tribes into a government was Osman, afterward called Othman. The rise and progress of Mohammedanism is the subject of a prophecy recorded in the ninth chapter of the Revelation. The first incursions of these hordes are described in verses 1-3. The beginning of Othman’s reign is noted in the 11th verse, where it is stated that “they had a king over them.” From this point the Ottoman Empire began to fulfill its mission as one of the scourges of the corrupt Roman Empire – the destroyer of the Greek or Eastern portion of it, ruled from Constantinople.” International Sabbath-School Quarterly – The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter 1904 – Lesson 11 note 7.
How important it is to read the Bible aright.
“There are many things apparently difficult or obscure, which God will make plain and simple to those who thus seek an understanding of them. But without the guidance of the Holy Spirit we shall be continually liable to wrest the Scriptures or to misinterpret them. There is much reading of the Bible that is without profit and in many cases a positive injury. When the word of God is opened without reverence and without prayer; when the thoughts and affections are not fixed upon God, or in harmony with His will, the mind is clouded with doubts; and in the very study of the Bible, skepticism strengthens. The enemy takes control of the thoughts, and he suggests interpretations that are not correct.” Steps to Christ p.110.1
But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, [even] to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased. Daniel 12:4.
- To confirm that 1798 marked the time of the end
- To reveal the events regarding the King of the North since 1798
- To recognise that the Islamic world associated with the King of the North
Having identified 1798 as the end of the papal persecution, what other references reveal that year to be the beginning of the end time? Daniel 8:17; Revelation 10:2, 5, 6, 9-11; Daniel 12:4, 13.
“The mighty angel who instructed John was no less a personage than Jesus Christ. Setting His right foot on the sea, and His left upon the dry land, shows the part which He is acting in the closing scenes of the great controversy with Satan. This position de His supreme power and authority over the whole earth. The controversy had waxed stronger and more determined from age to age, and will continue to do so, to the concluding scenes when the masterly working of the powers of darkness shall reach their height. Satan, united with evil men, will deceive the whole world and the churches who receive not the love of the truth. But the mighty angel demands attention. He cries with a loud voice. He is to show the power and authority of His voice to those who have united with Satan to oppose the truth.” SDA Bible Commentary Volume 7 p. 971.3
In pointing out that the vision was to reveal the latter days; Daniel 10:14, how did Gabriel help to identify these days? Daniel 12:9-11.
In reference to verse 11: “The margin reads, “To set up the abomination” etc. With this reading the text would stand thus: “And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away to set up [or in order to set up] the abomination that maketh desolate, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days.” The daily has already been shown to be, not the daily sacrifice of the Jews, but the daily or continual abomination, that is, paganism….we have the year 508, where it was shown that paganism was taken away, thirty years before the setting up of the papacy….The two periods therefore, the 1290 and the 1260 days terminate together in 1798, the one beginning in 538 and the other in 508, thirty years previous.” Daniel and the Revelation pp.313.2 – 314
How else is the date of 1798 derived? Daniel 7:25; Revelation 12:6, 14 and 13:5, Daniel 12:7
“The period is called, “a time, times, and the dividing of time.”’ “time, times, and a half”, “a thousand two hundred and three score days”, and “forty and two months”. It is the 1260 years of papal supremacy.” Daniel and the Revelation p.263.3
As in Daniel 11:40, we have seen France heavily attacked by the King of the North i.e. Turkey, what does he continue to do? Daniel 11:41.
“The French….after a fatiguing march of twenty-six days re-entered Cairo in Egypt. They thus abandoned all the conquests they had made in Judea; and the “glorious land.” Palestine, with all its provinces, here called “countries” fell back again under the oppressive rule of the Turk. Edom, Moab, and Ammon, lying outside of the limits of Palestine…. were out of the line of march of the Turks from Syria to Egypt and so escaped the ravages of that campaign.” Daniel and the Revelation p.278.3
How completely did the Turks (King of the North) vanquish the French out of the countries it had occupied? Daniel 11:42.
“On the retreat of the French to Egypt, a Turkish fleet landed 18,000 men at Aboukir…..
“The English government, as the ally of the Turks, had resolved to wrest Egypt from the French. March 13, 1800, an English fleet disembarked a body of troops at Aboukir. The French gave battle the next day, but were forced to retire. On the 18th Aboukir surrendered…. the 19th, Rosetta surrendered to the combined forces of the English and Turks…..The whole French army was now shut up in Cairo and Alexandria. Cairo capitulated June 27, and Alexandria, September 2. Four weeks after, October 1, 1801, the preliminaries of peace were signed at London.
“As between the French and Turks, how did this question stand with the Egyptians? – They preferred French rule….They desired to escape from the hands of the Turks, but could not.” Daniel and the Revelation pp.279.2, 3, 4 – 280
Under Turkish domination now, what did Gabriel say regarding the treasury of Egypt? Daniel 11:43.
“When the French were driven out of Egypt, and the Turkish took possession, the sultan permitted the Egyptians to recognise their government as it was before the French invasion….In the articles of agreement between the sultan and the pasha of Egypt, it was stipulated that the Egyptians should pay annually to the Turkish government a certain amount of gold and silver, and six hundred thousand measures of corn, and four hundred thousand of barley. “The Libyans and Ethiopians” “the Cushim”…. the unconquered Arabs, who have sought the friendship of the Turks…. are tributary to them….” Daniel and the Revelation p.280.3 -4
As the Ottoman Empire with Turkey as its headquarters was slowly disintegrating, what valiant effort did it exert? Daniel 11:44.
“It is a remarkable fact that in the year 1825, twenty-eight years before the Crimean War broke out, Dr. Adam Clarke, in commenting upon the fulfillment of this very prophecy, wrote the following comment: “This part of the prophecy is allowed to be yet unfulfilled. If the Turkish power be understood, as in the preceding verses, it may mean that he Persians of the East and the Russians on the North will at some time greatly embarrass the Ottoman government.”
“Just twenty-eight years after Dr. Clarke penned this suggestion, the world was amazed to see Turkey, a government which had long been regarded as the “sick man of the East,” declare war against her powerful neighbor, Russia. Thus Turkey fulfilled the specifications of this part of the prophecy, which describes her as going “forth with great fury.” International Sabbath-School Quarterly The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter 1904 – Lesson 11 note 4.
As Turkey today is still functioning from its governing palaces in that land, what of Gabriel’s words are we still waiting to see? Daniel 11:45 and Daniel 12:1.
“As Dr. Clarke said of the 44th verse in 1825, we can now say of this 45th verse, – it is yet unfulfilled. All except the closing verse of this remarkable chapter has now been wrought out in history. We must look to Turkey to fulfill the movement predicted in this verse.” International Sabbath-School Quarterly The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter 1904 – Lesson 11 note 5.
“The judgments of God are in the land. The wars and rumors of wars, the destruction by fire and flood, say clearly that the time of trouble, which is to increase until the end, is very near at hand. We have no time to lose. The world is stirred with the spirit of war. The prophecies of the eleventh of Daniel have almost reached their final fulfillment.” Welfare Ministry p.136.5
How intensively close are we to the close of probation and the final scenes at the conclusion of the time of the end?
“Not long ago a very impressive scene passed before me. I saw an immense ball of fire falling among some beautiful mansions, causing their instant destruction. I heard someone say, “We knew that the judgments of God were coming upon the earth, but we did not know that they would come so soon.” Others said, “You knew? Why then did you not tell us? We did not know.” On every side I heard such words spoken.” . . . Welfare Ministry p.136.3
“Soon grievous troubles will arise among the nations –trouble that will not cease until Jesus comes. As never before we need to press together, serving Him who has prepared His throne in the heavens and whose kingdom ruleth over all. God has not forsaken His people, and our strength lies in not forsaking Him.” Welfare Ministry p.136.4
And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation. Genesis 17:20.
- To identify clearly the connection of the King of the North with all the Islamic states
- To recognise that the Arabic states are all affectionately bound to the same heredity as the Israelis
- To show that Palestine is indeed a place that both the Israelis and Arabs have a religious interest in and hence Turkey would be prone to shift its headquarters (Caliphate) there
Of what people was the Ottoman Empire composed and where was its governing seat? Revelation 9:12-15.
“The Four Angels – These were the four principle sultanies of which the Ottoman Empire was composed, located in the country watered by the great river Euphrates. These sultanies were situated at Aleppo, Iconium, Damascus, and Bagdad. Previously they were restrained; but God commanded, and they were loosed.” Daniel and the Revelation p.489.3
“The four angels were loosed for an hour, a day, a month, and a year to slay the third part of man. This period amounts to three hundred and ninety-one years and fifteen days, during which Ottoman supremacy was to exist in Constantinople (modern Istanbul in Turkey).” Daniel and the Revelation p.481.1
How was this time period established, and what happened at the end of it?
“Gibbon says: It was on the twenty-seventh day of July, in the year twelve hundred and ninety-nine of the Christian era that Othman first invaded the territory of Nicomedia; and the singular accuracy of the date seems to disclose some foresight of the rapid and destructive growth of the monster.” – Chapter LXIV par 14.” International Sabbath-School Quarterly The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter 1904 – Lesson 11 note 8.
“The time allotted for the Mohammedan conquest was given as “five months,” and a further period of “an hour, a day, and a month, and a year” was allotted to its supremacy. This being prophetic time, must be reckoned in the following manner from the initial date as given by Gibbon:-
Date given by Gibbon July 27 1299
“Five months,” 150 days-150 literal years July 27 1449
“An hour,” 24th part of a day-15 literal days Aug 11 1449
“A day” – 1 literal year Aug. 11 1450
“A month,” 30 days-30 literal years Aug 11 1840
“A year,” 360 days – 360 literal years Aug 11 1840”
International Sabbath-School Quarterly The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter 1904 – Lesson 11 note 9.
“In the year 1840 another remarkable fulfillment of prophecy excited widespread interest. Two years before, Josiah Litch, one of the leading ministers preaching the Second Advent, published an exposition of Revelation 9, predicting the fall of the Ottoman Empire. According to his calculations, this power was to be overthrown “in A.D. 1840, sometime in the month of August;” and only a few days previous to its accomplishment he wrote: “Allowing the first period, 150 years, to have been exactly fulfilled before Deacozes ascended the throne by permission of the Turks, and that the 391 years, fifteen days, commenced at the close of the first period, it will end on the 11th of August, 1840, when the Ottoman power in Constantinople may be expected to be broken. And this, I believe, will be found to be the case.”–Josiah Litch, in Signs of the Times, and Expositor of Prophecy, Aug. 1, 1840.”Great Controversy p.334.4
“At the very time specified, Turkey, through her ambassadors, accepted the protection of the allied powers of Europe, and thus placed herself under the control of Christian nations. The event exactly fulfilled the prediction. (See Appendix.) When it became known, multitudes were convinced of the correctness of the principles of prophetic interpretation adopted by Miller and his associates, and a wonderful impetus was given to the advent movement. Men of learning and position united with Miller, both in preaching and in publishing his views, and from 1840 to 1844 the work rapidly extended.” Great Controversy p.335.1
Although the empire no longer functions, are Palestine and the Jewish people still suffering under the ire of the Arab states? How far back was this discomfort expressed? Psalms 120:5-7.
To discover who Kedar is check Genesis 25:13 and study the map in this pamphlet to locate where the nations under these two names are located.
Having seen that Kedar is a son of Ishmael, what characteristic was written of his posterity? Genesis 16:11, 12.
“Abraham’s early teachings had not been without effect upon Ishmael, but the influence of his wives resulted in establishing idolatry in his family. Separated from his father, and embittered by the strife and contention of a home destitute of the love and fear of God, Ishmael was driven to choose the wild, marauding life of the desert chief, “his hand” “against every man, and every man’s hand against him.” Genesis 16:12. In his latter days he repented of his evil ways and returned to his father’s God, but the stamp of character given to his posterity remained. The powerful nation descended from him was a turbulent, heathen people, who were ever an annoyance and affliction to the descendants of Isaac.” Patriarchs and Prophets p.174.1
Although there was a leaning in idolatry in Ishmael’s line, yet what was the blessing God bestowed on Ishmael? Genesis 17:20.
“Abraham is greatly distressed. Ishmael is his son, beloved by him. How can he send him away! He prays to God in his perplexity, for he knows not what course to take. The Lord informs Abraham, through his angels, to listen to the voice of Sarah his wife, and that he should not let his affections for his son, or for Hagar, prevent his compliance with her wishes. For this was the only course he could pursue to restore harmony and happiness again to his family. Abraham has the consoling promise from the angel, that Ishmael, although separated from his father’s house, should not die, nor be forsaken of God; that he should be preserved because he the son of Abraham. God also promises to make of Ishmael a great nation.” Spirit of Prophecy Volume 1 p 97.2
Because of God’s blessing upon Ishmael, what do the Arabs claim in reference to Palestine and their faith?
“Near the close of the sixth century there was born in Mecca, of the princes of Arabia, a man who claimed direct descent from Ishmael, the son of Abraham. This man was Mohammed, the son of Abdallah, and the founder of a faith, which, today has many million adherents…..On his return from one of these seasons of seclusion (fasting and prayer) he announced his belief in one God, and that Mohammed was the prophet of God. This was the beginning of Islamism.” Haskell’s Prophetic Waymarks pp.568.2 and 569.2
Today the Arab regards Jerusalem as sacred a place as do the Jews. – They have built their mosque over the Dome of the Rock.
Because of these bonds, what will Turkey do as a last sign of the very close of time? Daniel 11:45 and 12:1.
“The time will come when he (King of the North) will remove from Constantinople, and take up his abode in Palestine; that is, plant his tabernacles between the Mediterranean and Red Seas. Even the Turks themselves are looking forward to the time when they will have to remove their capital from Constantinople to Jerusalem.” Haskell’s Prophetic Waymarks p.416
In our study through Daniel chapters 10 and 11 we have arrived at unfulfilled prophecy. Do we hold the same thrill as did the pioneers over the next event?
“It must be clear to every careful reader that the driving of the Turk from the soil of Europe will be the fulfillment of the closing verse of the eleventh chapter of Daniel’s prophecy. What makes this kind of prophecy of momentous interest to every one now living is the fact that the downfall of the Turkish Empire will be the signal of the most sublime events that the world has ever witnessed. The prophecy closes with the first two verses of chapter 12.” International Sabbath-School Quarterly The Prophecies of Daniel – First Quarter 1904 – Lesson 12 note 2.