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Daniel 7:9-14

Context

7:9 “While I was watching,

thrones were set up,

and the Ancient of Days 1  took his seat.

His attire was white like snow;

the hair of his head was like lamb’s 2  wool.

His throne was ablaze with fire

and its wheels were all aflame. 3 

7:10 A river of fire was streaming forth

and proceeding from his presence.

Many thousands were ministering to him;

Many tens of thousands stood ready to serve him. 4 

The court convened 5 

and the books were opened.

7:11 “Then I kept on watching because of the arrogant words of the horn that was speaking. I was watching 6  until the beast was killed and its body destroyed and thrown into 7  the flaming fire. 7:12 As for the rest of the beasts, their ruling authority had already been removed, though they were permitted to go on living 8  for a time and a season. 7:13 I was watching in the night visions,

“And with 9  the clouds of the sky 10 

one like a son of man 11  was approaching.

He went up to the Ancient of Days

and was escorted 12  before him.

7:14 To him was given ruling authority, honor, and sovereignty.

All peoples, nations, and language groups were serving 13  him.

His authority is eternal and will not pass away. 14 

His kingdom will not be destroyed. 15 

1 tn Or “the Ancient One” (NAB, NRSV, NLT), although the traditional expression has been retained in the present translation because it is familiar to many readers. Cf. TEV “One who had been living for ever”; CEV “the Eternal God.”

2 tn Traditionally the Aramaic word נְקֵא (nÿqe’) has been rendered “pure,” but here it more likely means “of a lamb.” Cf. the Syriac neqya’ (“a sheep, ewe”). On this word see further, M. Sokoloff, “’amar neqe’, ‘Lamb’s Wool’ (Dan 7:9),” JBL 95 (1976): 277-79.

3 tn Aram “a flaming fire.”

4 tn Aram “were standing before him.”

5 tn Aram “judgment sat.”

6 tc The LXX and Theodotion lack the words “I was watching” here. It is possible that these words in the MT are a dittography from the first part of the verse.

7 tn Aram “and given over to” (so NRSV).

8 tn Aram “a prolonging of life was granted to them.”

9 tc The LXX has ἐπί (epi, “upon”) here (cf. Matt 24:30; 26:64). Theodotion has μετά (meta, “with”) here (cf. Mark 14:62; Rev 1:7).

10 tn Or “the heavens.” The Hebrew term שָׁמַיִם (shamayim) may be translated “heavens” or “sky” depending on the context.

11 sn This text is probably the main OT background for Jesus’ use of the term “son of man.” In both Jewish and Christian circles the reference in the book of Daniel has traditionally been understood to refer to an individual, usually in a messianic sense. Many modern scholars, however, understand the reference to have a corporate identity. In this view, the “son of man” is to be equated with the “holy ones” (vv. 18, 21, 22, 25) or the “people of the holy ones” (v. 27) and understood as a reference to the Jewish people. Others understand Daniel’s reference to be to the angel Michael.

12 tn Aram “they brought him near.”

13 tn Some take “serving” here in the sense of “worshiping.”

14 tn Aram “is an eternal authority which will not pass away.”

15 tn Aram “is one which will not be destroyed.”



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