The temple was destroyed, it was made desolate, but the kingdom of Christ has no end. I remember the first time I heard some teaching on Daniel chapter nine and was just struck by the divine inspiration of Holy Scripture because you have all these amazing things prophesied centuries before they happened. What an encouragement for us as believers.
Who knew the Roman Empire was going to emerge in the future, and yet Daniel here is clearly prophesying the 10 Caesars of the Roman Empire. Andrew Menkis Wednesday, Nov Is Jesus forbidding Christians from things like swearing to tell the truth in court?
A week Bible study through the Gospel of John. Continue Reading. Balzer Should the narrative and prayer in Daniel 9 be read in terms of its place between apocalyptic visions, or should it be read in terms of the tales found in the first part? The compilation of the book in two parts is perhaps not intended to carry that much weight, as the author had the narratives at hand, reinterpreted them in terms of the new situation and added own compositions to further elucidate the crisis caused by Antiochus' menace to Jewish identity.
To confirm the argument, the placement of the vision in Daniel 2 amongst the tales and Daniel 9 amongst the visions can be cited. A question of definition. If the Book of Daniel represents apocalyptic literature, what is the essence of apocalyptic literature and apocalypticism? It is not known who created or read or heard this genre, or what the influence of apocalyptic literature on the Jewish community was, and modern researchers also find it difficult to describe the characteristics of apocalyptic texts because of the differences between the few extant texts.
Apocalypticism may be described in terms of the following characteristics:. Hanson warns that the value of such a list is limited because each apocalyptic work has unique features. This implies that the historical and social matrix of apocalypse cannot be explained in this way. Apocalypticism is a crisis phenomenon illustrating in what way the values and structures of a minority group has become meaningless and requires to be replaced by a new meaning system that displaces and alienates the minority group further from the majority group.
For this group, the only meaning in life consists in the revelation of a new world when God will judge the majority group and punish them with eternal death. The struggle between good and evil experienced in human life is a microcosmic manifestation of a macrocosmic phenomenon' Larue Antiochus IV's oppression of Jews becomes the catalyst for apocalyptic thought patterns, whilst the roots of the thinking lie in Israel's sacral history. Antiochus' persecution led to:. Larue The new expected to be realised is incomparable with the known because 'apocalyptic eschatology is the mode assumed by the prophetic tradition once it had been transferred to a new and radically altered setting in the post-exilic community' Hanson The research into apocalypticism produced a useful distinction between a literary genre apocalypse , a social ideology apocalypticism and literary ideas and motifs apocalyptic eschatology.
Apocalypse refers to a specific text, whilst an apocalyptic perspective refers to a point of view from which reality is experienced. An apocalyptic movement is a grouping within society, whilst apocalypticism refers to a phenomenon or ideology cf.
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Vorster Instead of trying to define the terms, it is better to describe the phenomenon and to do it in terms of a specific document. In the end, the different descriptions can be compared in order to keep one from reading a text with a priori perceptions. Not all researchers even agree that it is possible to speak of a 'genre' of apocalypticism. The correct question that needs to be asked, but which does not have an answer, is did the first readers or listeners notice a distinctive 'genre' when they listened to the book?
If the answer is negative, as is probably the case, they would have read it against the context of similar literature that they knew, which would be the prophecies and dreams found in the rest of the Old Testament, political pseudo-prophecies, interpretation of dreams known from Babylon of the second century and the tales found in the first part of the Book of Daniel Knibb The Book of Daniel should be seen as a unique and distinctive piece of literature with a clearly defined witness of its own Porteous , even though it borrows from the wisdom and prophetic traditions as well as psalms found in the Hebrew Bible.
Collins ; as part of the Semeia team describes the macro genre of apocalypse as a, 1 way of writing e. Apocalypse is defined as a genre of revelatory literature with a narrative framework, in which a revelation is mediated by an otherworldly being to a human recipient, disclosing a transcendent reality which is both temporal, insofar as it envisages eschatological salvation, and spatial, insofar as it involves another, supernatural world Collins Wills discusses the different definitions and remarks that 'genre classification lies in the eye of the beholder', but the definition of Collins above is applicable to the visions found in Daniel 2, as well as in The two main types of apocalypse are an apocalypse with and an apocalypse without an otherworldly journey.
A characteristic of apocalypse without an otherworldly journey, such as the visions of Daniel, is that it always contains an overview of the history in one form or another, in the form of ex eventu prophecy of history. For this reason is can also be named historical apocalypse. Both subgenres also contain a worthy figure from ancient times as the receiver of the revelation, as part of the pseudonimity of the literature type and part of the narrative relates how the revelation was received.
In the case of Daniel 9 the narrative satisfies all these requirements. The advantage of the definition of SBL's Semeia is that it is wide enough to enclose all documents described as apocalypses, although Rowland argues that the expectation of salvation is not exclusive to apocalypses but forms an integral part of Judaism of the intertestamental period. The problem is that no concrete evidence exists to endorse this derivation. Grabbe states the opposite, in that apocalypses are not intended to encourage marginalised groups in crisis but are rather the product of visionary groups functioning in the same sense as modern millenarian movements.
Where did apocalypticism originate? The question is: was apocalypticism an unfortunate turn off from the prophetic tradition, or a linear and legitimate progression and development from prophecy? Is it a necessary or applicable development of the prophetic tradition?
What is the distinction between prophetic and apocalyptic eschatology? The distinguishing factor between prophecy and apocalypticism lies in the way the vision of the future is integrated with the events of daily life in prophecy, whilst the vision of the future needs a radical break with ordinary history in apocalypticism Hanson Prophecy is like an aeroplane departing from the runway of history and flying into an eschatological future, whilst apocalypticism is like an aeroplane appearing in the clouds of the eschatological reality to land on the runway of the present Verhoef Whilst the historical situation is important for prophecy, apocalypticism comes from God's distance to land in the situation he created.
Von Rad is of the opinion that, to a certain degree, there is no connection between prophecy and apocalypticism, except in the fact that both are oriented towards the future. The irreconcilability between prophecy and apocalypticism he finds in the different views of history, with prophecy finding its roots in Israel's salvation history and the tradition of election, whilst apocalypticism never refers to the patriarchal, exodus, Zion or David traditions.
Only in Daniel 9 is a reference to the Torah of Moses and the exodus to be found, but some researchers see this prayer as a secondary interpolation.
The Book of Daniel
The root from which apocalypticism grew was the wisdom tradition Von Rad , as can be seen in the title of the alleged author as 'wise man' and not 'prophet', Daniel's predictions flowing not from a prophetic impulse but the interpretation of dreams and the intention of the book not to partake in social and political conflicts but to describe history in a deterministic tonality Soggin Koch is, however, correct when he states that wisdom literature does not show any form of critical agreement or parallels with the Book of Daniel and wisdom literature of the second century does not show any interest in eschatological themes cf.
Wisdom of Jesus Ben Sirach for one example of this. A relation between wisdom tradition and apocalypticism can be shown, but apocalypticism finds its other parent in prophecy Baldwin It is my tentative judgment that wisdom was wedded to the tradition of apocalyptic eschatology as part of efforts being made by visionary circles to establish their credentials in the third and second century BCE, at a time when prophetic figures were being regarded with a great deal of skepticism and even animosity by many religious leaders Hanson As already argued in the section about the exegesis of Daniel 9, apocalypticism originated in a radical break with how the present and past is viewed, in order to reinterpret it in the light of a totally new future Vorster It is characterised by radical pessimism, where all human intervention is liquidated and the expectation is exclusively focused on the utopia with its new symbolic coherence.
World history is in the process of being ended as a result of the nature of humankind and the kingdoms established by them. There is no expectation of salvation in the present; salvation will be eschatological and in the future Von Rad Apocalyptic literature treats good and evil as timeless factors and the only interest lies with the last generation of Israel who will experience the end of times.
The Book of Daniel | Old Testament | Britannica
Daniel paints history in a deterministic sense in the service of his view of the future and human beings are seen as the victim of decisions taken long ago without having any say in it. Allegorical codes are utilised to summarise the whole historical process under a few denominators and objectify it conceptually and history is schematised and unified by reducing it to a few primary powers that are determining it.
Humans are only in a limited sense agents in the events with limited power of choice. Second-century apocalyptic literature. During the second century, Hellenism stimulated the rise of an apocalyptic movement amongst Jews in the crisis caused by Antiochus' policies that threatened the soul of the religion and identity of the Jewish people.
These literature types display a clear polemical character as an instrument to propagandise for resistance against the Hellenisation policies of the Greek-Syrian tyrants with its cultural and religious syncretism, but also against the Jewish party that was willing to compromise their faith by supporting Antiochan efforts. Daniel strives to establish a pure Yahwism, a struggle that was already expressed by the priest-prophet Elijah LaCocque In this article, the following question was asked: does Daniel 9 form an integral part of the apocalyptic section found in the Book of Daniel, or is it misplaced and should it perhaps rather have been part of the tales Dn ?
The conclusion, after discussing Daniel 9's exegesis, is that there are many arguments for its correct placement amongst the visions, because of its view of time, determinism, the role an angel plays in the interpretation of the obscure, the pesher type of interpretation of previously revealed texts, the role of the 'anointed' in creating a new future, the definition of the new future in terms of a radical break with the known, the direct connection between the terminology and interpretation found in Daniel and Daniel , the obscurity of the symbols and language which also characterise other apocalyptic texts in order to veil direct historical references that could lead to persecution by oppressors, the fact that Daniel 9 is written alongside Daniel and in Hebrew contra Daniel b, as well as the important motive of theodicy in Daniel 9.
Daniel 9 can be described as apocalyptic in essence, a text of revelatory literature with a narrative in which a revelation is mediated by an otherworldly being and disclosing a transcendent reality which is both temporal, insofar as it envisages eschatological salvation, and spatial, insofar as it involves another, supernatural world. A description of apocalypticism also showed the relatedness of the narrative of Gabriel's revelation of the meaning of Jeremiah's time designation in Daniel 9 to characteristics ascribed to apocalypticism.
The author declares that he has no financial or personal relationships that may have inappropriately influenced him in writing this article. Achtemeier, E. Knox preaching guides, John Knox, Atlanta. Albertz, R.
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