Introduction to the Book of Daniel

You are about to begin one of the most fascinating adventures of your life. You may be asking yourself just what can I expect to learn from these Bible Studies?

  1. You will begin to understand the prophecies of Daniel and many of those in Revelation as you have understood them before.
  2. You will discover the amazing story of the cosmic drama unfolding between God and Satan, good and evil, and the ultimate triumph of Christ
  3. You will enhance your relationship with Jesus Christ as you get better acquainted with Him and His love for you.
  4. You will find an inner peace and security as you come to learn the God is in control regardless of how it seems.

The Books of Daniel and Revelation are full of prophetic symbols that to most people are very confusing. As you work your way through these studies you will start to learn just what these symbols reveal. You will come to understand how prophecy is unfolded and why it is structured the way it is. Your wonderment of God's foreknowledge will build your faith and give you understanding of the world's events that you have never had. You will be filled with the inner peace that can only come from the knowledge that God is in total control.

Helps for Teacher - Lesson 1
Author and Date
1. Who is the author of the book of Daniel?
Daniel 12:4 "But Thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end..." Daniel 12:9 "And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end."
The testimony of the Book of Daniel is that it was written by the prophet Daniel. This is evident by the fact that only a person who was intimately acquainted with Nebuchadnezzar's Babylon could have provided the details of history revealed in the Book of Daniel.
2. Did Jesus recognize Daniel as the author of the book that bears his name? Matthew 24:15 "When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet..." Jesus believed that the prophecies in the book of Daniel were written by Daniel.
3. When was the book of Daniel written? Daniel 12:9 "And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end." The book of Daniel was written during Daniel's life of captivity. Daniel was taken captive in 605 B.C., and died sometime around 530 B.C., at the age of 90+ years. We are not sure of the exact time. But the book was completed during his life time.
The setting of the book of Daniel
4. Who had conquered Jerusalem and taken Daniel captive to Babylon? Daniel 1:1 "In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah came Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon unto Jerusalem and besieged it." In 605 B.C., Nebuchadnezzar captured Jerusalem. And Daniel and his friends were taken into captivity as prophesied in Isaiah 39:7 "And if thy sons that shall issue from thee, which thou begat, shall they take away..."
5. To what event does the book of Daniel point? Daniel 12:4"...the time of the end..."; Daniel 12:9 "...the time of the end."; Daniel 12:13 "...the end of the days." Even though the book of Daniel was written during the Jewish captivity its focal point is the end of the world. Thus you will discover that this focal point gives the book of Daniel tremendous meaning in to days world.
6. What are the two parts to the book of Daniel?

Part 1, the historical sections are Daniel 1, 3, 4, 5, 6. - The history sections provide the keys that help to unlock the meaning of the prophetic sections.

Part 2, the prophetic sections are Daniel 2, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12. - The prophetic sections cannot be properly understood without the historical sections.

What the book of Daniel says about history provides a key that unlocks the meaning of history, while its prophetic sections opens a window through which we see how the God of heaven is guiding the affairs of this world towards that great climactic event, the second coming of Christ.

Many people in their hast to quickly unravel the prophecies of Daniel have skipped the historical section and missed a lot of the meaning in the book. The stories of Daniel are not given simply as stories, rather they illustrate what the prophecies [foretell]. The stories reveal that what happened to Daniel and his friends in ancient Babylon are symbolic of the experiences of the people of God a\in the end time.

Always remember that the focal point of the book of Daniel is the time of the end - the end of the conflict between good and evil. In this seminar we will study the entire book chapter by chapter, including both the historical and prophetic sections. We shall study the historical section to discover the message there for the end time, and then we will discover how the prophetic sections have [foretold] those very conditions in the last days. What an exciting study awaits us in the book of Daniel! In addition we will be studying the great key prophecies of the book of Revelation.

7. Is the study of prophecy important? 2 Peter 1:19 "We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:" The Bible says prophecy is sure; we should heed it. Instead of studying Bible prophecy to provide hope today, many people are turning to the occult, to spirit mediums and withes in an endeavor to understand today's chaotic world. The Bible asserts that real answers can be found only in prophecy. Prophecy is a light that illuminates our pathway and the study of prophecy causes Christ (the Day Start) to find a place in our hearts. We pray that this study of Daniel and Revelation will provide Christ-centered illumination in your life.
Symbols Of Prophecy
8. Give the Biblical meaning of the following symbols:


Much of the books of both Daniel and Revelation is written in symbolic language. In order to correctly interpret the prophecies one must understand the Biblical meaning of the symbols. Once the symbols are understood the prophecies make sense. . . .

. . . This does not mean that every time these words appear in Scripture they have symbolic meaning, but rather only in the symbolic prophecies such as those found in Daniel and Revelation.

How To Interpret Daniel

There are four major prophecies in the Book of Daniel:

  1. Daniel 2
  2. Daniel 7
  3. Daniel 8 and Daniel 9
  4. Daniel 10, Daniel 11 and Daniel 12

Each of these prophecies covers the broad sweep of history from Daniel's day to the end time. The focal point of each prophecy is the end of time.

  1. We will discover that Daniel 2 gives us the broad outline of human history from Daniel's day to our day.
  2. Daniel 7 covers the same time period with different symbols, and elaborates on a certain period in the time of the end.
  3. Daniel 8 and Daniel 9 also cover the same ground, but add further details on the time of the end.
  4. Daniel 10, Daniel 11, and Daniel 12 likewise go over the same ground and further expand our understanding of the end time.

The principle that Daniel uses is what is called "outline" prophecy in which world history is outlined from Daniel's day to the end of time and each subsequent prophecy elaborates on the end time. In employing this method Daniel made certain that he rooted the prophecies in history so that as we see them unfold we can constantly see where we are living in the stream of history. This prophecy Seminar attempts to utilize this principle of interpretation which is so clearly enunciated in the book of Daniel itself. In other words we will discover that each of these major prophecies begins in Daniel's day, continues through history and then focuses on the end time. Amazingly we will discover that we today are living in Daniel's predicted time of the end.

The student should be aware that other interpretations are suggested for the book of Daniel. Some have erroneously dated the book of Daniel in the 2nd century B.C., and have interpreted the events in the book as occurring mainly in the Grecian Empire. They feel that all the prophecies of Daniel were fulfilled then and that the book of Daniel has little meaning for today. Others have gone to the opposite extreme and suggested that everything in the book of Daniel will yet take place in the future. Since this view of the prophecies is not rooted in history no one can be sure when they will take place. The method of interpretation espoused by this Prophecy Seminar, however, is consistent with the Biblical evidence. Thus the prophecies span the ages, rooted in history but focused on the future. This has been the most consistent interpretation of the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation by Jewish and Christian scholars from earliest times.

Lesson 2 will explore the exciting theme of the book of Daniel. Once the theme of the book is clear we will begin our chapter study. Thrilling times are ahead of us as we unravel these fantastic prophecies and see how the various stories relate to the time of the end.

it is imperative to remember that the focal point of the book of Daniel is the time of the end - the end of the conflict between good and evil. It will be exciting for all to discover through your study that we today re indeed living in the time of the end foretold in the book of Daniel. What reassuring news for people everywhere who face the future with apprehension! And even more important, both Daniel and Revelation focus on Jesus Christ and reveal fantastic new amazing facts regarding Him and His plans for the future. It is our hope and prayer that you will get to know Him better in this Prophecy Seminar.

9. Is it your desire to know Jesus better through the study of the prophecies of the book of Daniel?    
10. Answer Key
  • 1. Daniel
  • 2. Yes
  • 3. third
  • 4. Nebuchadnezzar
  • 5. time / end
  • 6. Historical / Prophetic
  • 7. Yes / sure / prophecy / need / shineth star
  • 8. Kingdom / year / people
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