Stand Firm and Take Action
Daniel 11 is a stunning passage of detailed predictive prophecy. “The longest continuous prophecy in the Bible is found in the 11th chapter of Daniel.” (Oxford Companion To The Bible) It gives many details that were fulfilled in history over the next several hundred years. It is so precise that unbelievers say it had to be written after the events took place, but that is not the case.
Also in the prophecy there is some telescoping into the distant future of the end time. The text is talking about this ruthless leader, Antiochus IV Epiphanies, and then it telescopes to the end times and focuses on the final evil leader, Antichrist.
In this section of Daniel 11 we see some of the warfare tactics that Satan has utilized since the beginning, and still uses today. This is what we face today.
For example, see Daniel 11: 30 – 35. It begins by pointing out that the forces of evil are looking for those who are forsaking the holy covenant. It says, “He shall turn back and pay attention to those who forsake the holy covenant.” Can you imagine that? Satan is paying attention to those who are in the community of God’s people, and he is looking for those who are forsaking the holy covenant. He is looking for the stragglers, those in the back of the flock, beginning to walk away. They are people who are beginning to compromise and forsake the holy covenant. There are many ways to forsake the covenant. There is too much covenant forsaking.
In verse 32 it says, “He shall seduce with flattery those who violate the covenant.” When an individual begins to forsake God’s Word, the evil one will begin to really work on them. He will seduce them with flattery. Is it possible that Satan uses popularity as a powerful tool to get us away from God? Imagine the evil one insinuating to preachers that if they just go light on the unpopular aspects of God, more people will attend their meetings and buy their books.
We do not live in a safe place. The forces of evil want desperately to turn us away from the beautiful New Covenant, and the Word of God in general. I have heard some intense battle stories from our soldiers from Afghanistan. They tell of a very aggressive and deceptive enemy. The enemy looks to take every advantage. The enemy attacks in the wee hours, with intense violence. The battlefield is loud, confusing, and deadly. God’s Word presents the Christian life in the same way. Our enemy wants nothing more that to lull us to sleep, and then attack.
Daniel tells us that in the Greek wars, and at the end of times too, “but the people who know their God shall stand firm and take action.” (v.32) This is just as true today. God has a people who know HIM, and they are standing firm and taking action! Our stand needs to be based on the truth of God’s Word. We need to know our God based on his revelation of himself. This calls for careful study. So we should stand firm. But notice, we are also to take action. Do not just hunker down, and bury your capital. No! We need to be productive for our Lord. Daniel gives us how we are to be productive. We are to make many understand, and turn many to righteousness. (Daniel 11:33, 12:3)
This is God’s plan for us here on the earth. While we live in a dangerous spiritual arena, we are to stand firm and stay active for our Lord.
Also, in this passage in Daniel, we are taught that a part of God’s plan is severe testing of his faithful agents. Those who are standing firm and taking action, will suffer persecution and great suffering. Daniel 11:35 says this testing is God’s plan “so that they may be refined, purified, and made white, until the time of the end.” In all our struggles, even when people are treating us very badly, we can rest assured that God is disciplining us for our good, and thus showing his fatherly love towards us.
Are you standing firm and taking action to make many understand and turn them to righteousness?