Daniel 11:27 The two kings, with their hearts bent on evil, will sit at the same table and lie to each other, but to no avail, because an end will still come at the appointed time.
Daniel 11 relates quite detailed descriptions of the conflict between competing world powers – their progress and their outcome. Because of this atypical depth of detail, many Bible commentators consider it HISTORY rather than PROPHECY, and so locate its composition in the middle of the 2nd Century BC instead of coming from the hand of Daniel himself, four centuries earlier.
Such reasoning is the product of a humanistic worldview that, by its nature, CANNOT ACCOMMODATE accurate predictive prophecy. Two things should be noted: firstly, that Bible-believing Christians should remain wary of the influence of secular humanism that has become so influential among us, and therefore harmful to the confidence we should have in God’s inspired Word; and secondly, even those who want to accept the view that Daniel 11 is history rather than prophecy are still faced with some interpretative difficulties concerning historical ‘accuracy’.
For those of us who adopt a Biblical worldview that recognises the sovereignty of the Creator of the cosmos over all history, and that sees all history as moving inexorably from the beginning through the Incarnation of Jesus the Promised Messiah to his future Second Coming to usher in the New Heaven and Earth, such detail in prophecy as we find in Daniel 11 is NOT surprising. The detailed fulfilment of specific OT prophecies in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus confirm this conviction.
Nevertheless, these largely fulfilled prophecies in Daniel 11 are valuable because they highlight some TIMELESS truths that continue to operate throughout history even today as we wait for, and long for, the Coming of “One like a Son of Man, coming with the clouds of heaven” (7:12). Human politics and the quest for power have always produced ‘kings with their hearts set on evil … sitting at the same table and lying to each other’, and the situation seems to be getting worse rather than better because the unregenerate human heart seldom learns anything from the past. Current politics can be quite distressing! The encouraging truth, however, is that ALL THIS is “to no avail, because an end will still come at the appointed time”.
In other words, “The One enthroned in heaven laughs; the Lord scoffs at them. Then he rebukes them in his anger and terrifies them in his wrath, saying, ‘I have installed my King on Zion, my holy hill.’” (Psalm 2:4-6). Let us not be unduly perturbed by current politics. Yes, as Daniel foresaw in his own day, and as Jesus himself predicted (Matthew 24:15), there WILL be difficult, perplexing and perilous days ahead for God’s people. But the Scriptures encourage us to take heart and not despair because, although we don’t know WHAT the future holds, we do know WHO holds the future!