Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible
back to: Daniel
Book: Daniel
Chapter: 7

Daniel's Vision of the four beasts. (1-8) and of Christ's
kingdom. (9-14) The interpretation. (15-28)

1-8 This Vision contains the same prophetic representations
with Nebuchadnezzar's Dream. The great Sea agitated By the
Winds, represented the Earth and the dwellers On it troubled By
ambitious princes and conquerors. The four beasts signified the
same four empires, as the four parts of Nebuchadnezzar's image.
Mighty conquerors are but instruments of God's vengeance On a
guilty world. The savage Beast represents the hateful features
of their characters. But the dominion given to each has a limit;
their wrath shall be made to praise the Lord, and the remainder
of it he will restrain.

9-14 These verses are for the comfort and support of the people
of God, in reference to the persecutions that would come upon
them. Many New Testament predictions of the Judgment to come,
have Plain allusion to this Vision; especially Re 20:11,12.
The Messiah is here called the Son of Man; he was made in the
likeness of sinful Flesh, and was found in fashion as a Man, but
he is the Son of God. The great event foretold in this Passage,
is Christ's glorious coming, to destroy every antichristian
power, and to render his own kingdom universal upon Earth. But
ere the solemn time arrives, for manifesting the Glory of God to
all worlds in his dealings with his creatures, we may expect
that the doom of each of us will be determined at the Hour of
our Death; and before the End shall come, the Father will openly
give to his incarnate Son, our Mediator and Judge, the
inheritance of the nations as his willing subjects.

15-28 It is desirable to obtain the right and full sense of
what we see and hear from God; and those that would know, must
ask By Faithful and fervent Prayer. The Angel told Daniel
plainly. He especially desired to know respecting the little
Horn, which made War with the saints, and prevailed against
them. Here is foretold the rage of papal Rome against true
Christians. St. John, in his visions and prophecies, which point
in the first place at Rome, has Plain reference to these
visions. Daniel had a joyful prospect of the prevalence of God's
kingdom among men. This refers to the second coming of our
blessed Lord, when the saints shall triumph in the complete fall
of Satan's kingdom. The saints of the Most High shall possess
the kingdom for ever. Far be it from us to infer from hence,
that dominion is founded On Grace. It promises that the Gospel
kingdom shall be set up; a kingdom of Light, Holiness, and Love;
a kingdom of Grace, the privileges and comforts of which shall
be the Earnest and First-fruits of the kingdom of Glory. But the
full accomplishment will be in the Everlasting happiness of the
saints, the kingdom that cannot be moved. The gathering together
the whole family of God will be a blessedness of Christ's