International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

The Quo Vadis Problem and Solution in Historicism of Daniel 11
Koot van Wyk, Sook Young Kim

Currently Historicism scholars are hesitant about the relevancy to the text of Daniel 1, specifically 11:36-45, although relevancy of the text with history in Daniel 2, 7, 8, 9 and Revelation 13 is clear and somewhat consistent. Starting with the Victorian Age, historicists still interpreted the whole chapter as literal and Uriah Smith (1877) interpreted the last verses (vv. 36-45) in the light of Turkey’s history and the French. James White objected to his political literal application of these last verses of Daniel 11 and wanted him to consider a continuation of Rome as fourth empire to the end. White (1877) used Rome as an umbrella statement to include both Pagan Rome and the Holy Roman Empire. Shortly after 1900 some scholars objected by papers against Smith. There were those stressing the symbolical application and those stressing the literal application. Arguments for and against each other were regularly presented. The methodology of the symbolical interpreters for these last verses sometimes followed a concordance method of interpretation and ideas or meanings were carried in from other parts of the Old Testament. Others (since the late 1980’s) used literary structure to discover chiastic structures minimally and another current scholar as maximally, to superimpose meanings on this grey area of understanding. A number of problems were identified in this research of the symbolical interpreters, especially, that geographical terms became shelved. In the literal understanding of the text, nations like Egypt, Ethiopia, Libya are considered as they are currently, and Moab, Ammon, and Edom as Jordan. They are all allies of the USA. The other problem identified is that symbolical historicists are not consistent since they have Daniel 11:1-35 literal but switch to symbolical at verse 36 all the way to verse 45. They further caused a problem by making the papacy ‘come to its end’ in Daniel 11:45 as if that is the Second Coming of Christ, when the text of Daniel sees this end as the beginning of the Time of Trouble and during that Time, Christ will come. Resurrection is not in Daniel 11:45 but separated in time and later, as Daniel 12:2-3 indicated. This researcher entertained and suggested a literal interpretation that used the second beast of Revelation 13, commonly understood by all historicists in both the Victorian as well as currently, as the USA for Daniel 11:36-45. The other solution is to see not a bipolar setting for Daniel 11:40 but a tripartite division as: 911, the USA with many ships and Saddam Hussein as the king of the north. Independently also other historicists came near to this solution. A case is made for the role of Justinian and Theodora (538 A.D.) in Daniel 11:21-32 and Daniel 8:9-10 in the Appendices.

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