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Daniel 10-12:4, Psalm 85

From Daniel’s vantage point, all that was prophesied in chapters 10-11 would happen in the future. Many writers will have lengthy disagreements in identifying the particular kingdoms of those chapters. No matter those disagreements, everyone believes Daniel 12:1-4 looks towards what still lies in our future today, towards the final resurrection. What Ezekiel 37 spelled out through describing dry bones taking on flesh, so Daniel here describes a day when God will raise all the dead for judgement, and some will enjoy everlasting life while others will experience everlasting condemnation. To reiterate what I said in Ezekiel 37, this is one of the first times in scripture that God clearly reveals what happens after death. That doesn’t mean God changed his plan, or people didn’t have questions about death, but rather that God chose to reveal certain aspects of redemption in steps. This is called by theologians “progressive revelation.” This concept has its pitfalls, but understood properly accurately conveys that the Bible tells us a story, and like any good book, doesn’t give away everything at first. Certainly, because of Daniel 12:1-4 and Ezekiel 37 many faithful Jews came to believe in what is called “the resurrection”, that is God’s day of ultimate judgement. In fact the Pharisees and Sadducees in Jesus’ day had lengthy arguments about whether this event would take place. Early Christians were in the Pharisees’ camp on this matter. Now, after Jesus’ rising from the dead, we actually believe this event predicted in Daniel has already in a sense begun. Jesus is the first to rise from the dead, proving God’s judges Him righteous, and now all those that place their faith in Him will enjoy that same judgement. Jesus is always the end (goal) of the story.
 

Jeremiah Vaught