The time element of the vision (chazon) encompasses the entire vision beginning in 8:1-3 with the historical period of the ram representing Medo-Persia (v. 20) including the goat or Greece, the 4-horn powers and the career of the horn from littleness (both phases). The vision extends to the end of the 2300 years at the time of the end (Dn. 8:17).
8.1.1 The Daily. Although Hasel acknowledges the duration of the vision, he stresses that the phrase, “until when”, places emphasis not on the duration (how long) but on the termination of the vision.(90) Since Hasel’s interpretation of the “daily” (Christ’s high priestly ministry) cannot encompass the entire length of the vision, the emphasis on the terminus of the vision becomes a natural consequence. However, it should be recognized that the emphasis on duration in 8:13 comes from the phrase describing the on-going activity in the vision, namely, “making” (to give) both the sanctuary and the host to be trampled.” This clearly implies duration, not termination. It is acknowledged that `ad (until) designates termination but only in the context of terminating the 2300 years (duration) of the trampling activity.
Hasel correctly points out that the construction of the Hebrew noun chazon (vision) precludes a literal genitival relationship such as “the vision of the daily and….”.(91) However, Shea suggests(92) that the syntactical relationship should be one of apposition giving the question the significance of “how long the vision, that is, the vision in which the four following works of the little horn are seen?” Moreover, it is suggested that the four nouns (“the daily”, “the transgression”, “the sanctuary” and “the host”) following the phrase: “until when the vision” circumscribe the entire length of the vision which is also inherently implied in the question itself. More importantly the exegesis has demonstrated that “the daily” (hattamid) is not represented by Christ’s priestly ministry but by the self-exalting character of the pagan nations. In the vision of Daniel 8, this self-magnifying behavior (gadal) begins with the ram (Medo-Persia) and continues with each successive world power concluding with Rome.
8.1.2 The Transgression. “The transgression” refers back to the transgression in verse 12 whereby, as was demonstrated earlier, papal Rome united with the converted pagan forces of Clovis against the pagan and Arian forces which opposed the papacy. This joint activity resulted in a union of church and state claiming to act in behalf of God. Thus, it is seen that “the daily” and “the transgression” span the entire length of the vision. Together they form a compound subject in verse 13 representing the identical behavioral characteristic of two phases, pagan and papal, of a single entity exalting against God.
8.1.3 Causing Desolation. “The daily and the transgression”, a compound subject, represents a singular behavior pattern which causes desolation. The Hebrew participle, shomem, means “causing desolation” or “which desolates” and is in the singular construction and modifies, in an attributive manner, the entire compound subject. The desolating activity of each successive world power is clearly portrayed in the vision of Daniel 8. This is manifested first in “the continual” self-exalting character of pagan nations and second in “the transgression” (union of church and state claiming to act in behalf of God) throughout history. Evidence of both pagan and papal behavior causing desolation is found in Dn. 9:26 where “desolations (plural) are determined until an end of war”. This phrase will be discussed further under Section 9.0: “External Evidence of Daniel 9.”
Hasel argues, based solely on the Greek Theodotion and Mt. 24:15, that there is no parallel linkage of “the transgression which desolates” in 8:13 with “the abomination which desolates” in 11:31 and 12:11.(93) The “abomination which desolates” is generally accepted among Adventist theologians(94) as representing the character of papal Rome. This is in harmony with our exegesis of 8:9-14 which demonstrates a direct, parallel linkage of “the transgression which desolates” in 8:13 with the accepted view of “the abomination which desolates” in 11:31 and 12:11.
8.1.4 Qodesh. The nature of the desolating activity involves “making” or “giving” the sanctuary (qodesh) and the host to be trampled. Qodesh always connotes the sense of holiness and may either apply to God’s earthly or heavenly sanctuary as was previously discussed. It is suggested that qodesh in verse 13 applies both to the earthly and the heavenly sanctuary. The vision (chazon) in v. 13 refers to the entire vision extending from Medo-Persia to both phases of Rome.
The sanctuary (qodesh) at the commencement of the vision in the third year of Belshazzar (BC 553-552) lay in ruins following the conquest of Nebuchadnezzar. Thus, the question, “until when the vision: the daily…making both the sanctuary…. to be trampled” includes the “continual” exalting behavior activity (“the daily”) associated with pagan power resulting in the trampling of God’s earthly sanctuary. The earthly sanctuary (qodesh) was again trampled in AD 70 following the anointing of the heavenly sanctuary (qodesh) in AD 31 (Dn. 9:24).
Any attempt to suggest that hattamid (“the daily”) is trampled in verse 13 and restored in verse 14 would require, by the Hebrew syntactical relation, that “the transgression which desolates” must also be trampled and restored in the answer of verse 14; however, this is a non sequitur. The sanctuary and the host are trampled in v. 13 and “the daily” (hattamid) and “the transgression desolating” cause (tet is the infinitive construct, “giving” or “making,” of natan, “to give” or “to make”) the trampling of the sanctuary and the host. The infinitive construct, tet (making) requires both a receiver of the action, namely the sanctuary and the host, and an initiator of the action, namely hattamid and the transgression which desolates. The vision (chazon) cannot be responsible for initiating or “making” the sanctuary to be trampled. If “the daily” and “the transgression which desolates” are responsible for “making…the sanctuary…to be trampled” as the syntax would suggest, then hattamid of Daniel 8 must be of counterfeit origin which is exactly what the context of 8:1-14 suggests. The sanctuary cultic terminology related to the ram, the goat, and the horn are all counterfeit symbols pointing to a counterfeit hattamid which was demonstrated in Sections 6.0 & 7.0.
While the trampling of the qodesh includes the earthly sanctuary, the primary application and emphasis is on the terminus of the vision and concerns the trampling of the heavenly sanctuary. The trampling of the heavenly sanctuary is directly associated with the casting down of truth by papal Rome in v. 12. The trampling of the host or saints in v. 13 is also alluded to in v. 10 and is carried out by the feminine or papal phase of the horn from littleness as discussed earlier. The 2300-year trampling of the sanctuary will be examined in greater depth in the cultic context of the 2300 Evening-Morning in the following Section.
90) G. F. Hasel, DARCOM: Vol. 2, pp. 429-436.
91) Ibid., pp. 434-435.
92) W. H. Shea, Selected Studies of Prophetic Interpretation, Daniel & Revelation Committee Series, Vol. 1, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, p. 80, 1982. (Hereafter all citations to volumes 1-6 of the Daniel & Revelation Committee Series will be referred to as “DARCOM: Vol. #” with their respective volume numbers.)
93) G. F. Hasel, DARCOM: Vol. 2, p. 442.
94) W. H. Shea, DARCOM: Vol. 2, p. 246; DARCOM: Vol. 6, pp. 333-334 & 341.
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