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Daniel 10: Daniel's Persistent Prayer

Chapter 10 - Introduction

We are given an inside look at the struggle of prayer. Daniel is distraught and mourns in prayer (must we always be cheerful?) for three weeks. At the end of that time an angel will describe a 'spiritual battle' which was going on while Daniel prayed.

In effect, Chapter 10 through verse one of Chapter 11 form an introduction to the contents of Chapters 11 and 12. These three chapters form one story, unlike the first nine Chapters of Daniel which were all complete in themselves.

Chapter 10 - Text and commentary

{10:1} In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a thing was revealed to Daniel, whose name was called Belteshazzar; and the thing was true, even a great warfare: and he understood the thing, and had understanding of the vision.

DATE: 535/4 BC (Date of Daniel having the vision) Daniel is perhaps in his late eighties.

{10:2} In those days I, Daniel, was mourning three whole weeks.

{10:3} I ate no pleasant bread, neither came flesh nor wine into my mouth, neither did I anoint myself at all, until three whole weeks were fulfilled.

{10:4} In the four and twentieth day of the first month, as I was by the side of the great river, which is Hiddekel,

{10:5} I lifted up my eyes, and looked, and, behold, a man clothed in linen, whose loins were girded with pure gold of Uphaz:

{10:6} his body also was like the beryl, and his face as the appearance of lightning, and his eyes as flaming torches, and his arms and his feet like burnished brass, and the voice of his words like the voice of a multitude.

{10:7} I, Daniel, alone saw the vision; for the men who were with me didn't see the vision; but a great quaking fell on them, and they fled to hide themselves.

{10:8} So I was left alone, and saw this great vision, and there remained no strength in me; for my comeliness was turned in me into corruption, and I retained no strength.

{10:9} Yet heard I the voice of his words; and when I heard the voice of his words, then was I fallen into a deep sleep on my face, with my face toward the ground.

{10:10} Behold, a hand touched me, which set me on my knees and on the palms of my hands.

{10:11} He said to me, Daniel, you man greatly beloved, understand the words that I speak to you, and stand upright; for to you am I now sent. When he had spoken this word to me, I stood trembling.

{10:12} Then said he to me, Don't be afraid, Daniel; for from the first day that you did set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard: and I am come for your words' sake.

{10:13} But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days; but, behold, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me: and I remained there with the kings of Persia.

Daniel prayed for three weeks, the whole time the angel was delayed. At the end of the three weeks Michael (an archangel) helped the first angel to overcome the 'prince of Persia' and come to Daniel. The 'prince of Persia' was possibly a demonic being exercising influence over the leaders of the empire. If Daniel had stopped praying, would Michael have come?

{10:14} Now I have come to make you understand what shall happen to your people in the latter days; for the vision is yet for [many] days:

{10:15} and when he had spoken to me according to these words, I set my face toward the ground, and was mute.

{10:16} Behold, one in the likeness of the sons of men touched my lips: then I opened my mouth, and spoke and said to him who stood before me, my lord, by reason of the vision my sorrows are turned on me, and I retain no strength.

{10:17} For how can the servant of this my lord talk with this my lord? for as for me, immediately there remained no strength in me, neither was there breath left in me.

{10:18} Then there touched me again one like the appearance of a man, and he strengthened me.

The angel somehow strengthened Daniel.

{10:19} He said, "Greatly beloved man, don't be afraid: peace be to you, be strong, yes, be strong." When he spoke to me, I was strengthened, and said, "Let my lord speak; for you have strengthened me."

{10:20} Then he said, "Do you know why I have come to you? Now I will return to fight with the prince of Persia. When I go forth, behold, the prince of Greece shall come.

{10:21} But I will tell you that which is inscribed in the writing of truth: and there is none who holds with me against these, but Michael your prince."

Chapter 10 - Summary

There is much about prayer, angels, and spiritual battle in this chapter. We see that Daniel was constant in prayer, he did not give up when his answer was delayed. Sometimes answers are delayed, and in this case a spiritual being called the 'prince of Persia' opposed the messenger of God and was able to delay him for three weeks. Angels appear to be limited to space or a place, although they are spirits. They are not everywhere, as the angel was travelling to Daniel. This angel was able to strenghten Daniel, as well as give him God's message.

Chapter 10 - Questions

Unless otherwise stated, the Bible text is from the World English Bible, and is in the public domain.
BrRon's Bible Commentary (C)Copyright 2010 by Ronald Miller, All Rights Reserved