The Medo-Persia empire fell to the conquering forces of Greece.

Lesson 8 - Cleansed at Last

The prophecies of Daniel outline history in advance. They cover the same time periods from different perspectives; they go over the same ground again. In Daniel 7, God’s kingdom is under attack. Ruthless earthly rulers attempt to seize world dominion. A religious-political power—a strange combination of church and state—establishes its authority as supreme. God’s law, the foundation of His government, is changed by this new, would-be world leader. Human traditions are substituted for Bible truth. Church councils replace Scripture as the ultimate authority in religious matters. An earthly religious power seeks to establish the kingdom of God on earth based on its own grand design.

In Daniel 8, God makes His final move to set all things right. He takes charge. Truth, cast to the ground, is restored. In earnest, heart-felt prayer, God’s people confess their sins. They repent of their rebellion against His purposes. They are forgiven by His grace, transformed by His love, and renewed by His power. Kneeling before His heavenly throne, they seek Him. They surrender everything. The call of God’s final judgment inspires them to a deeper spiritual experience. The drumbeat of eternity motivates them to be ready. Heaven’s final appeal comes from the very throne of God in heaven’s most sacred place—the sanctuary.

The Vision of the Ram and the He-Goat: Questions 1-5

Question 1

We studied Daniel’s earlier vision in chapter 7. It concludes with a magnificent scene at God’s throne. Millions of angels gather to participate in heaven’s final judgment. The vision in Daniel 8—like the one at the first, (verse 1)—also focuses on heaven’s final judgment. It also directs our attention to the sanctuary.

Question 2

Both the ram and the he-goat were sanctuary animals. They were especially used in the services on the last day of the Jewish year—the Day of Atonement. These symbolic animals point forward to the final end of sin. They speak to us of a day when the universe will be clean and the human race will be at one with God again.