Daniel’s Vision of a Ram and a Goat

In the third year of King Belshazzar’s(A) reign, I, Daniel, had a vision,(B) after the one that had already appeared to me. In my vision I saw myself in the citadel of Susa(C) in the province of Elam;(D) in the vision I was beside the Ulai Canal. I looked up,(E) and there before me was a ram(F) with two horns, standing beside the canal, and the horns were long. One of the horns was longer than the other but grew up later. I watched the ram as it charged toward the west and the north and the south. No animal could stand against it, and none could rescue from its power.(G) It did as it pleased(H) and became great.

As I was thinking about this, suddenly a goat with a prominent horn between its eyes came from the west, crossing the whole earth without touching the ground. It came toward the two-horned ram I had seen standing beside the canal and charged at it in great rage. I saw it attack the ram furiously, striking the ram and shattering its two horns. The ram was powerless to stand against it; the goat knocked it to the ground and trampled on it,(I) and none could rescue the ram from its power.(J) The goat became very great, but at the height of its power the large horn was broken off,(K) and in its place four prominent horns grew up toward the four winds of heaven.(L)

Out of one of them came another horn, which started small(M) but grew in power to the south and to the east and toward the Beautiful Land.(N) 10 It grew until it reached(O) the host of the heavens, and it threw some of the starry host down to the earth(P) and trampled(Q) on them. 11 It set itself up to be as great as the commander(R) of the army of the Lord;(S) it took away the daily sacrifice(T) from the Lord, and his sanctuary was thrown down.(U) 12 Because of rebellion, the Lord’s people[a] and the daily sacrifice were given over to it. It prospered in everything it did, and truth was thrown to the ground.(V)

13 Then I heard a holy one(W) speaking, and another holy one said to him, “How long will it take for the vision to be fulfilled(X)—the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, the rebellion that causes desolation, the surrender of the sanctuary and the trampling underfoot(Y) of the Lord’s people?”

14 He said to me, “It will take 2,300 evenings and mornings; then the sanctuary will be reconsecrated.”(Z)

The Interpretation of the Vision

15 While I, Daniel, was watching the vision(AA) and trying to understand it, there before me stood one who looked like a man.(AB) 16 And I heard a man’s voice from the Ulai(AC) calling, “Gabriel,(AD) tell this man the meaning of the vision.”(AE)

17 As he came near the place where I was standing, I was terrified and fell prostrate.(AF) “Son of man,”[b] he said to me, “understand that the vision concerns the time of the end.”(AG)

18 While he was speaking to me, I was in a deep sleep, with my face to the ground.(AH) Then he touched me and raised me to my feet.(AI)

19 He said: “I am going to tell you what will happen later in the time of wrath,(AJ) because the vision concerns the appointed time(AK) of the end.[c](AL) 20 The two-horned ram that you saw represents the kings of Media and Persia.(AM) 21 The shaggy goat is the king of Greece,(AN) and the large horn between its eyes is the first king.(AO) 22 The four horns that replaced the one that was broken off represent four kingdoms that will emerge from his nation but will not have the same power.

23 “In the latter part of their reign, when rebels have become completely wicked, a fierce-looking king, a master of intrigue, will arise. 24 He will become very strong, but not by his own power. He will cause astounding devastation and will succeed in whatever he does. He will destroy those who are mighty, the holy people.(AP) 25 He will cause deceit(AQ) to prosper, and he will consider himself superior. When they feel secure, he will destroy many and take his stand against the Prince of princes.(AR) Yet he will be destroyed, but not by human power.(AS)

26 “The vision of the evenings and mornings that has been given you is true,(AT) but seal(AU) up the vision, for it concerns the distant future.”(AV)

27 I, Daniel, was worn out. I lay exhausted(AW) for several days. Then I got up and went about the king’s business.(AX) I was appalled(AY) by the vision; it was beyond understanding.

Footnotes

  1. Daniel 8:12 Or rebellion, the armies
  2. Daniel 8:17 The Hebrew phrase ben adam means human being. The phrase son of man is retained as a form of address here because of its possible association with “Son of Man” in the New Testament.
  3. Daniel 8:19 Or because the end will be at the appointed time
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

In the third year of the reign of king Belshazzar a vision appeared unto me, even unto me Daniel, after that which appeared unto me at the first.

And I saw in a vision; and it came to pass, when I saw, that I was at Shushan in the palace, which is in the province of Elam; and I saw in a vision, and I was by the river of Ulai.

Then I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram which had two horns: and the two horns were high; but one was higher than the other, and the higher came up last.

I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward, and southward; so that no beasts might stand before him, neither was there any that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became great.

And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes.

And he came to the ram that had two horns, which I had seen standing before the river, and ran unto him in the fury of his power.

And I saw him come close unto the ram, and he was moved with choler against him, and smote the ram, and brake his two horns: and there was no power in the ram to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground, and stamped upon him: and there was none that could deliver the ram out of his hand.

Therefore the he goat waxed very great: and when he was strong, the great horn was broken; and for it came up four notable ones toward the four winds of heaven.

And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land.

10 And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them.

11 Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of the sanctuary was cast down.

12 And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practised, and prospered.

13 Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?

14 And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.

15 And it came to pass, when I, even I Daniel, had seen the vision, and sought for the meaning, then, behold, there stood before me as the appearance of a man.

16 And I heard a man's voice between the banks of Ulai, which called, and said, Gabriel, make this man to understand the vision.

17 So he came near where I stood: and when he came, I was afraid, and fell upon my face: but he said unto me, Understand, O son of man: for at the time of the end shall be the vision.

18 Now as he was speaking with me, I was in a deep sleep on my face toward the ground: but he touched me, and set me upright.

19 And he said, Behold, I will make thee know what shall be in the last end of the indignation: for at the time appointed the end shall be.

20 The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia.

21 And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king.

22 Now that being broken, whereas four stood up for it, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not in his power.

23 And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up.

24 And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people.

25 And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand.

26 And the vision of the evening and the morning which was told is true: wherefore shut thou up the vision; for it shall be for many days.

27 And I Daniel fainted, and was sick certain days; afterward I rose up, and did the king's business; and I was astonished at the vision, but none understood it.

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