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Lesson # Dan. 7:6
Study Material - Dan. 7:6
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6 'After this I kept looking, and behold, another one, like a leopard, which had on its back four wings of a bird; the beast also had four heads, and dominion was given to it.
The leopard was the fastest of the beasts. Not only fierce like the lion, it had four wings whereas the lion of Nebuchadnezzar had but two wings of an eagle. Alexander the Great in just six years conquered all of the Persian Empire and more, extending the Greek influence into all of the known world in this section of Asia, Middle East, Africa, and even into Europe (Italy).
From this point there is going to be but one more empire until the Second Advent of Christ. Yes, I know that Rome came and went, but the basis of its existence influenced the remainder of history even up until today.
But for now the Greek Empire. The result of the Greek influence brought a stabilization in language. Even the Bible was translated into the Greek which became the language of the New Testament. This (Greek language) helped promote the gospel of Christ throughout the distant regions though at that later time the Roman Empire was in power.
Each successive Empire provided a bit more consolidation of territory, commerce, and the spreading of the scriptures. Today we see wars in distant lands. The result of those wars are refugees. The response to these refugees is the movement of supplies and aid, and along with that aid comes the gospel of Christ. Though the wars may upset the daily life of people, God uses the evil of the jungle to bring things for the benefit of good and to bring people to their hearing of the gospel. Certainly their life is important, but not as important as saving them from the lake of fire by dying as unbelievers.
Throughout history we look at historical events. We memorize dates and the names of great people - kings, leaders, adventurers, and so forth. But what most of us miss are the spiritual repercussions of these historical events. Some peoples are being punished, others are being brought to Christ, even if by despicable means (slavery, refugee camps, etc.), but at least they are being brought to Christ. And that is the important issue in history. It matters not what lands have been conquered or by whom. What matters is that God is working through history to spread the gospel to all peoples such that in all generations all peoples will have the chance to know Christ.
The Greek empire preceded the Roman Empire and the first advent of Christ. The Second Advent will be during the revived Roman Empire. In between will occur the construction of the Royal Family - that is us - you and me - believers during this Church Age.
The third beast, again was a beast rising from the sea and directed by the winds of heaven. Jesus Christ controls history. The beast had four heads which refer to the four Greek Generals under Alexander, and whom Alexander directed in his brilliant campaign. These four General are: Seleucus, Perdiccas, Cassander, and Ptolemeus. The third beast is also referred to as the 'he goat' from the west that touched not the ground, Dan. 8.
Alexander, after his fathers assassination drove through Asia Minor, through the Middle East into Egypt (founded the city of Alexandria), then back into Persia and to the east into southern Asia. Alexander set about to make Babylon the supreme capital of all the lands. He was formalizing plans to push even further east into China when he suddenly died. The winds of heaven thus terminated his expansion.
His four generals stopped the expansion and divided up the kingdom. Seleucus Nicanor ruled Asia the Greek portion; Perdiccas, and after him Antigonus, ruled the Persian portion; Cassander ruled Macedonia; and Ptolemeus ruled Egypt and there began the Ptolemy dynasty. By the way Cleopatra, or more precisely, Cleopatra VII, was the last of the Ptolemaic line just prior to the First Advent of Christ.
Dominion was given to the four heads ('it'), per the end of our verse. 'It' refers to the common beast, its body, and the four heads which shared the rule over the four carved up kingdoms of the Greek Empire.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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