Daniel 10:1 Index
"In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a thing was revealed unto Daniel, whose name was called Belteshazzar; and the thing was true, but the time appointed was long: and he understood the thing, and had understanding of the vision."
Research Material

"...In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia..."

  • Counted from the fall of Babylon by either the spring or fall [of that] year, this would be 536/535 B.C. (Daniel 10:4; Ezra 1:1). Daniel was now apparently near the end of his [long] life (Daniel 12:13), about 88 years old, considering that he was 18 when he was taken captive (4T 570) in 605 B.C. (Daniel 1:1). Daniel 10:1 introduces the final section of the book [of Daniel], Daniel 10 providing the setting in Daniel's experience for his fourth great prophecy, recorded in Daniel 11 and Daniel 12. The main body of the prophetic narrative begins with Daniel 11:2 and closes with Daniel 12:4, the remainder of Daniel 12 being a sort of postscript to the prophecy. (4BC 856-857)
  • The last three chapters of the book of Daniel are inseparable, for they relate to the last recorded vision of the prophet. Daniel 10 is preliminary to a detailed history of the world, and is valuable because of the important spiritual lessons which it contains. Daniel was an old man (Psalm 92:12-14), and nearing the end of a long and eventful career, but his last days were full of anxiety for his race; he still carried the burden of their captivity on his heart. Since the events recorded in Daniel 9, he had been in the lions' den (Daniel 6:4-22), thrust there because of the cruel hatred of men in high positions. His godly life was a constant rebuke to the corruption of men in office (Daniel 6:3), and they sought to destroy him, but God put these men to confusion, and witnessed to the purity of Daniel's life. The prophet had been held in high esteem by Darius the Mede, and on his death and the accession of Cyrus, Daniel had remained in the court, a counselor of the king, (SNH 176-177)
  • Cyrus, in the first year of his reign, had issued an emancipation proclamation to the Jews. The Spirit of God had pleaded with the heart of the king, and he felt that he was brought into power for that purpose (Ezra 1:1, 2). When, after every provision had been made for the return, but a small fraction of the Jews took advantage of it, Cyrus began to doubt the wisdom of the decree. It was with the Jews as with sinners to-day. Pardon is granted and freedom offered, but they choose to remain in sin until they receive the penalty - death (Isaiah 26:10). The sins of Babylon dazzled the eyes of the Jews who beheld them (Ezekiel 23:14-16; Laminations 4:1, 2), and the voice of their God was but faintly heard. (Ezekiel 33:30-32). (SNH 177)

"...Cyrus king of Persia..."

  1. This is the only prophecy of Daniel's dated in terms of Cyrus' reign. Cyrus is here given the title "king of Persia," which seems to imply that the whole empire was ruled by the Persians, as contrasted with the more limited title, "king over the realm of the Chaldeans," ascribed to Darius in Daniel 9:1. Arising from comparative obscurity as prince of the little country of Anshan located in the highlands of Iran, Cyrus overthrew successively within a few years the Median, Lydian, and Babylonian kingdoms, and united them under his rule into the largest empire yet know. It was with such a monarch that Daniel and his people now had to deal, and with whom the powers of heaven are here revealed (Daniel 10:13 and Daniel 10:20) as striving. (4BC 857)

"...a thing was revealed unto Daniel...'

  1. A unique expression used by Daniel to describe his fourth great prophetic outline (Daniel 10-12), which was apparently revealed without a preceding symbolic representation and without any allusion to symbols (Daniel 7:16-24; Daniel 8:20-26).

"...Belteshazzar..." (Daniel 1:7)

"...he... had understanding..."

  1. In contrast with the three other visions (Daniel 2, Daniel 7, Daniel 8-9), which were couched in highly symbolic terms, this final revelation was given largely in literal language. The angel stated specifically that he had come to make Daniel "understand what shall befall thy people in the latter days" (Daniel 10:14). This is the subject matter of Daniel 11 and Daniel 12. It is not until near the end of this vision (Daniel 12:8) that Daniel encounters a revelation concerning which he confesses, "I heard, but I understood not." (4BC 857)