2:39 Now after you another kingdom 1 will arise, one inferior to yours. Then a third kingdom, one of bronze, will rule in all the earth. 2:40 Then there will be a fourth kingdom, one strong like iron. Just like iron breaks in pieces and shatters everything, and as iron breaks in pieces 2 all of these metals, 3 so it will break in pieces and crush the others. 4
7:17 ‘These large beasts, which are four in number, represent four kings who will arise from the earth. 7:18 The holy ones 5 of the Most High will receive the kingdom and will take possession of the kingdom forever and ever.’
7:19 “Then I wanted to know the meaning 6 of the fourth beast, which was different from all the others. It was very dreadful, with two rows of iron teeth and bronze claws, and it devoured, crushed, and trampled anything that was left with its feet. 7:20 I also wanted to know 7 the meaning of the ten horns on its head, and of that other horn which came up and before which three others fell. This was the horn that had eyes 8 and a mouth speaking arrogant things, whose appearance was more formidable than the others. 9 7:21 While I was watching, that horn began to wage war against the holy ones and was defeating 10 them, 7:22 until the Ancient of Days arrived and judgment was rendered 11 in favor of the holy ones of the Most High. Then the time came for the holy ones to take possession of the kingdom.
‘The fourth beast means that there will be a fourth kingdom on earth
that will differ from all the other kingdoms.
It will devour all the earth
and will trample and crush it.
7:24 The ten horns
mean that ten kings will arise from that kingdom.
Another king will arise after them,
but he will be different from the earlier ones.
He will humiliate 13 three kings.
1 sn The identity of the first kingdom is clearly Babylon. The identification of the following three kingdoms is disputed. The common view is that they represent Media, Persia, and Greece. Most conservative scholars identify them as Media-Persia, Greece, and Rome.
2 tc Theodotion and the Vulgate lack the phrase “and as iron breaks in pieces.”
3 tn The Aramaic text does not have this word, but it has been added in the translation for clarity.
4 tn The words “the others” are supplied from the context.
5 sn The expression holy ones is either a reference to angels or to human beings devoted to God.
6 tn Aram “to make certain.”
7 tn The words “I also wanted to know” are added in the translation for stylistic reasons.
8 tc The conjunction in the MT before “eyes” is odd. The ancient versions do not seem to presuppose it.
9 tn Aram “greater than its companions.”
10 tn Aram “prevailing against” (KJV and ASV both similar); NASB “overpowering them”; TEV “conquered them.”
11 tc In the LXX, Syriac, and Vulgate the verb is active, understanding “judgment” to be the object rather than the subject of the verb (i.e., “the Ancient of Days rendered judgment”). This presupposes a different vocalization of the verb ( יְהַב [yÿhav] rather than the MT יְהִב [yÿhiv]).
12 tn Aram “thus he said.”
13 tn Or “subjugate”; KJV, NASB, NIV “subdue”; ASV, NRSV “put down.”
14 sn This small horn is Antiochus IV Epiphanes, who controlled the Seleucid kingdom from ca. 175-164