Q. I want to ask you about the beasts in Daniel 7. You identified them as the Babylonian, Media-Persian, Greek, and Roman kingdoms; many Bible scholars interpret them also this way. However, I’ve read another interpretation that they are not those kingdoms, but are others. The argument is based on verse 17: “These four great beasts are four kings who SHALL arise out of the earth” (emphasis mine). Therefore, since this vision was given to Daniel in the time of Babylonian kingdom, the first beast can not be the Babylon (because the word “shall” implies future), and so on. What’s your view on this?
A. The Book of Revelation devotes an entire chapter (Rev. 18) to the destruction of Babylon at the end of the Great Tribulation. Scholars argue with good cause that Babylon was never actually destroyed in history as the Bible requires, but there’s no debating that the Babylonian Kingdom ceased to be a gentile power. The fact that Babylon will be the seat of the anti-Christ’s government at the end of the age indicates that Babylon “shall” rise to world prominence again. I’ll stick with my interpretation of the beasts in Daniel 7.
But since you’ve brought it up, here’s another thought. Rev. 18 says Babylon will rise again. We have witnessed the Roman Empire’s return to world prominence, and just lately is seems that, primarily due to the US, the Persians (Iran) may be on an upward move as well. Wouldn’t it be remarkable if somehow a remnant of the Greek Empire also became an end times player? Oh, wait. That would be Turkey.