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Daniel Introduction

The book of Daniel tells the story of a young man when he was taken prisoner. He was taken to Babylon with other people from Israel. Daniel combines two types of writing. The first part of the book describes what happened to Daniel in the royal courts of Babylon and of Persia. Daniel and three of his friends worshiped God and obeyed his commands. But some people were jealous of Daniel and his friends. These people tried to get them in trouble. But God protected Daniel and his friends and kept them safe by his mighty acts.
The second part of the book uses a different kind of writing called apocalyptic. Apocalyptic writing uses language that has a hidden meaning. In this kind of writing numbers and images are signs for something else. This second part of the book describes visions and messages Daniel received from God. Angels were sent as messengers to bring these messages and visions.
These visions show the history of this part of the world. Powerful nations fight each other and try to rule the other nations. This includes the nations of Babylon and Persia. It includes powerful leaders like Alexander the Great from Greece. From these visions we see what happens to these nations.
These visions also tell about a terrible ruler who fights against God’s people. He forces them to disobey God’s laws. That causes some Jews called Maccabees to oppose him. This fighting makes Israel an independent nation once again. And it would save the true worship of the God of Israel.
Daniel’s visions show that there will be a clear conflict between God’s people and their enemies. This is true in Daniel’s time and also later. But God will support his people through their struggles. God will destroy all rulers and evil powers. God’s people can be encouraged. They can know that God’s kingdom is theirs forever. They can look forward to the time when God will come. He will live with his people in a renewed world.

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Daniel Introduction: NIrV





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