A Deep Dive into Daniel — Part 5 — The Little Horn will Prevail over God’s People

“Strengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them to continue in the faith, and saying that through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God.”

Acts 14:22

When Jesus gave His Olivet Discourse about the end of the age, He provided the general scope and basic timeline but did not get too deep into the fine details. Jesus told His disciples that the prophet Daniel had the details, and if the disciples wanted to put all the pieces together, then they needed to read and understand the book of Daniel first.

“So when you see the abomination of desolation spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand) …”

Matthew 24:15

In my last post, I focused on the early career of the “little horn,” which is another name for the end-times Beast — or Antichrist. The Antichrist may start small, but he will come boasting of big things and speaking blasphemies against God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Once the little horn assumes power and creates his Middle Eastern empire, he will begin expanding his reach around the world and unleashing his wrath on the people of God. The global persecution of the saints is one of the clearest characteristics of the campaign of the Antichrist, which can only mean one thing.

Believers — aka saints — will be on the earth during the great tribulation to face the Antichrist and even suffer at his hand.

This flies in the face of the popular “pre-tribulation” view of the rapture, which falsely teaches that the saints will be removed from the earth prior to the tribulation period. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Remember, Jesus told us to read Daniel and to understand his prophecies in order to have an accurate eschatology, so I intend to do just that.

THE LITTLE HORN WILL PERSECUTE THE SAINTS

The overwhelming majority of Daniel’s prophecies are concerning the appointed time of the end, which culminates with the return of the Son of Man on the clouds in power and glory to crush the evil empire of the Beast and establish His everlasting Kingdom.

That’s the end game, but Daniel also provides some key details about the events leading up to the return of the LORD. One of those details involves a defined period of time for the Antichrist to prevail over God’s people.

Let’s take a closer look.

“As I looked, this horn made war with the saints and prevailed over them, until the Ancient of Days came, and judgment was given for the saints of the Most High, and the time came when the saints possessed the kingdom.”

Daniel 7:21-22

Daniel provides more details just a few verses later.

“He shall speak words against the Most High,
and shall wear out the saints of the Most High,
and shall think to change the times and the law;
and they shall be given into his hand
for a time, times, and half a time.

But the court shall sit in judgment,
and his dominion shall be taken away,
to be consumed and destroyed to the end.”

Daniel 7:25-26

Daniel himself provides many more details about the campaign of the Antichrist against God’s people, which I will save for later, but for now allow me to show how the testimony of the Biblical prophets is also in full agreement.

“Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake … For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be. And if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short.”

Matthew 24:9, 21-22

“When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the witness they had borne. They cried out with a loud voice, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you will judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” Then they were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers should be complete, who were to be killed as they themselves had been.”

Revelation 6:9-11

Then one of the elders addressed me, saying, “Who are these, clothed in white robes, and from where have they come?” I said to him, “Sir, you know.” And he said to me, “These are the ones coming out of the great tribulation. They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

Revelation 7:13-14

And the beast was given a mouth uttering haughty and blasphemous words, and it was allowed to exercise authority for forty-two months. 6It opened its mouth to utter blasphemies against God, blaspheming his name and his dwelling, that is, those who dwell in heaven. 7Also it was allowed to make war on the saints and to conquer them. And authority was given it over every tribe and people and language and nation, 8and all who dwell on earth will worship it, everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slain. 9If anyone has an ear, let him hear:

10If anyone is to be taken captive,
to captivity he goes;
if anyone is to be slain with the sword,
with the sword must he be slain.

Here is a call for the endurance and faith of the saints.

Revelation 13:5-10

I could provide many more Scriptures to support this sobering reality. The Antichrist will be given authority to make war and conquer God’s people — which will include a campaign against both ethnic Israel and all believers on the earth.

And if you have noticed the timeframe provided by many of these passages, the Antichrist will be given this authority for 3.5 years.

THE ANTICHRIST WILL RULE FOR 3.5 YEARS

When we get to Daniel 9, I will do my best to interpret the 70 weeks of Daniel’s prophecy, and more specifically the 70th week — which represents a unique 7-year period. Having said that, I am not fully convinced that Daniel’s 70th-week refers to the final 7 years of human history, although it could.

Furthermore, I fully reject the notion that the Great Tribulation is a 7-year period. There is no Scripture that teaches that the Great Tribulation — which will be the worst time in human history — will be 7 years.

The only definitive period of time that we are given in Scripture is 3.5 years, or 42 months, or 1260 days. If I have to put a timeframe on the Great Tribulation, then I believe it will fall within this 3.5 year period before the Lord Jesus returns.

Let’s compare some of the passages again.

He shall speak words against the Most High,
and shall wear out the saints of the Most High,
and shall think to change the times and the law;
and they shall be given into his hand
for a time, times, and half a time [
3.5 years].

Daniel 7:25

“And the woman [Israel] fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, in which she is to be nourished for 1,260 days… But the woman [Israel] was given the two wings of the great eagle so that she might fly from the serpent into the wilderness, to the place where she is to be nourished for a time, and times, and half a time. 15The serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman, to sweep her away with a flood. 16But the earth came to the help of the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river that the dragon had poured from his mouth. 17Then the dragon became furious with the woman and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus. And he stood on the sand of the sea.”

Revelation 12:6, 14-17

And the beast was given a mouth uttering haughty and blasphemous words, and it was allowed to exercise authority for forty-two months. “

Revelation 13:5

After describing the 3.5 year period of tribulation, Daniel reminds us of the rest of the story. Jesus returns and crushes Antichrist and saves His people.

“They [the saints] shall be given into his hand
for a time, times, and half a time.
But the court shall sit in judgment,
and his dominion shall be taken away,
to be consumed and destroyed to the end.
And the kingdom and the dominion
and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven
shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High;
his kingdom shall be an everlasting kingdom,
and all dominions shall serve and obey him.”

Daniel 7:25-27

While the little horn will prevail for a season, Jesus will return in glory to crush him and establish His everlasting kingdom, which shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High!

Next time I will introduce Daniel 8, as we investigate another future conflict that must take place before the revelation of the Antichrist.

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