Ask a Bible Teacher

Where Is Dan?

Q. Can you explain why the tribe of Dan is missing from the list of the 12 tribes of Israel in Revelation 7:4-8?  Dan is listed in the Old Testament and I have read some commentary that the anti-christ might be from the tribe of Dan. I would like to know your views on this. Thanks so much for your Bible Studies they are wonderful and have really helped me to gain Bible knowledge.

A. Most scholars believe that Dan was omitted from the list of the 144,000 in Rev. 7:4-8 because it was through the tribe of Dan that idolatry was introduced into the land after King Solomon died (1 Kings 12:28-30).

Jacob had prophesied in Genesis 49:17 that Dan would be a serpent by the roadside, a viper along the path, that bites the horse’s heels so that its rider tumbles backward.  I think he was foretelling that Dan would be responsible for Israel’s fall back into idolatry.

There’s a tradition that Dan was a ringleader in the kidnapping and sale of Joseph into slavery, and another one that the anti-Christ will come from the tribe of Dan, but neither one of these can be confirmed in Scripture. For these or other reasons, no one from the tribe of Dan will be sealed with the 144,000.

But God is merciful, and at the beginning of the Kingdom Age when the land is re-distributed, the tribe of Dan will receive the first share. (Ezekiel 48:1)

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