Introduction: Daniel is now an old man. In the series of dreams and
visions which have been a critical part of his life so far, God has
revealed to him the sweep of history on earth. The lesson for us is
that God controls kings, kingdoms and the future. This week Daniel
reveals another dimension to history – the conflict over the course
of history in the supernatural. Let’s dive into our study which gives
us a rare glimpse into the cosmic conflict between good and evil!

  1. The Messenger

    1. Read Daniel 10:1. How does this revelation compare in time
      to the other visions and dreams of Daniel? (This is the
      latest we have studied. The third year of Cyrus, according
      to the Bible Knowledge Commentary, is 536 B.C. Jewish
      exiles had begun to return and rebuild the sanctuary.
      Daniel, now an old man, appears to have retired from
      public office. Compare Daniel 1:21.)

      1. Daniel 10:1 speaks of both a revelation and a vision.
        Are these two the same? (Daniel seems to have first
        received a “revelation” which he did not understand.
        The later “vision” helped to give him understanding.)

    2. Read Daniel 10:2-3 & 12. Why is Daniel fasting? What is
      going on? (We have this picture of a revelation about war
      and the future. Daniel is upset by it. He fasts for three
      weeks hoping to understand the revelation. A vision then
      comes to him to help him understand the original
      revelation. Notice, by comparing Daniel 1:12, that his
      diet seems to have changed over the years. With age and
      influence, he now has control over the way his food is
      prepared so that he does not violate any of the Levitical
      dietary laws.)

    3. Read Daniel 10:4-6. Who is this messenger?

      1. Read Revelation 1:13-16. If you were the police, and
        you were taking a description from Daniel and John,
        would you think they saw the same person?

        1. Compare the description of the messenger who
          came to Daniel? (John’s description of Jesus in
          Revelation seems quite similar to Daniel’s
          description of his messenger. On the other hand,
          Gabriel has been the prior messenger to Daniel.
          Perhaps the identity of the messenger will
          become clearer as we continue.)

    4. Read Daniel 10:7-9. What do you think terrorized Daniel’s
      companions? They did not see the messenger, why should
      they be afraid? (Perhaps they saw the brilliance without
      seeing the being.)

      1. In Daniel 10:12 the messenger says “Do not be afraid.”
        Why does the messenger appear as he does if he does
        not want Daniel to be afraid?

      2. Read Daniel 10:10-11. What further clues do we find
        about the identity of the messenger? (Gabriel would
        be more likely to say “I was sent” then would Jesus.
        Unless there are two heavenly beings here, this
        suggests the messenger is (again) Gabriel.)

        1. What else is said to Daniel to comfort him?
          (That he is highly esteemed.)

    5. What overall reaction is God seeking from Daniel? (God is
      God and He does not want us to forget this. For that
      reason, His messengers come in glory. However, at the same
      time, He does not seek to terrorize those who are esteemed
      by Him.)

    6. What do we learn about God’s concern about our
      understanding? (Daniel is a model for us in desperately
      seeking to understand God’s will. God shows that He
      rewards a hunger for understanding. One of His priorities
      is to help us understand His word.)

  2. Spiritual Warfare

    1. Read Daniel 10:12-13. What does this tell us about the
      identity of the messenger? (The messenger can hardly be
      Jesus. It boggles my mind that Jesus could be detained or
      require the assistance of Michael. This settles the
      identity of the messenger in my mind. It must be Gabriel.)

      1. Who is this “Prince of the Persian Kingdom?” (Read
        John 12:28-32, John 14:30-31 and John 16:10-11. These
        texts in John clearly point to Satan as the one
        formerly known as the “Prince of this World.” The
        “Prince of Persia” may refer to Satan or one of his
        top lieutenants. There can be little doubt that this
        is a supernatural figure.)

      2. How long( Daniel 10:13)is Gabriel kept from his God-given mission to come to Daniel? (Threce weeks.)

      3. When I ask God for something and it does not happen
        (or does not happen soon), I conclude one of two
        things: my faith was faulty or God said “no.” Can we
        add another possible reason for why I might not get a
        quick, favorable answer? (This text tells us that
        God’s messenger might have gotten into a tussle with
        Satan or one of his henchmen – and the answer was

        1. What is your reaction to this possibility? (I do
          not like to hear this. It makes the forces of
          God seem less powerful if they can actually be
          bogged down in battle with the forces of evil.)

    2. Let’s skip down and read Daniel 10:20-21. To what battle
      must Gabriel return? (He will return to his battle with
      the Prince of Persia.)

      1. Who else is involved in that battle on the side of
        the bad guys? (The Prince of Greece.)

        1. Who is the Prince of Greece? (The introduction
          of another supernatural “prince” of evil causes
          me to conclude that these are top lieutenants of
          Satan and not Satan himself.)

        2. Is Satan organized? (The implication is that
          Satan assigns a top lieutenant to be in charge
          of the fight for the triumph of evil in each of
          these world empires.)

    1. Read Revelation 12:7-9. Do you think this was a physical

      1. Are we a part of this battle? (Read Ephesians 6:10-12. We are a part of this supernatural battle.)

    2. Read Ephesians 6:13-17. Paul uses words that would be
      appropriate for a physical battle with supernatural
      forces. But, is this battle physical? (No. This is
      spiritual warfare.)

    3. With Ephesians 6 in mind, go back and read Daniel 10:13
      again. Is this a spiritual or a physical battle?

      1. Is the “Prince of Persia” the same as the “King of
        Persia?” (No. The “prince” is an evil angel – one of
        Satan’s henchmen. The King, on the other hand, is
        Cyrus – the King of Medo-Persia.)

      2. When we read that Michael is helping Gabriel with the
        King of Persia, what do you think this means? How can
        Cyrus “detain” (v.13) Gabriel?(This all makes sense
        to me now. I was troubled by the idea that Satan has
        such physical power that he could detain God’s
        messenger three weeks. That is not happening.
        Instead, the logical conclusion is that there is a
        giant spiritual battle going on over Cyrus. Because Cyrus has free choice, both Satan’s “prince” and God’s messenger, Gabriel, are hard at work to win over Cyrus. Gabriel is encouraging Cyrus to do the “right thing” (presumably
        with regard to his authority over the work of God’s
        people to rebuild Jerusalem and the sanctuary). Satan
        is not in God’s league when it comes to physical
        power. However, God is voluntarily “weakened” when it
        comes to us because God gives us free choice.)

    4. Read Daniel 10:20-11:1. How do you understand this? (This
      tells us that Gabriel and Michael have been locked in
      spiritual combat with Satan’s agents over the hearts and
      minds of the leaders of Medo-Persia. Part of this overall
      spiritual battle is to take out time to give Daniel
      understanding about the future.)

    5. There is a current American television ad for an Internet
      company which provides consumers with competing home loan
      offers. The ad pictures an entire crowd of bankers who
      are competing with each other to lend you money for your
      home. Have you ever thought that God and His angels are
      literally struggling against Satan and his angels for your

      1. If you could trade places with God, would you do the
        same thing for humans? (If I gave up my son for
        humans, part of me would have a “take it or leave it”
        attitude because I would be insulted that anyone
        would turn down an offer like that. Another part of
        me would say “I’ve given up my son, I want to be sure
        it was worth-while by saving as many as I can.”)

    6. Have you given thought to how your actions and decisions
      impact the supernatural war?

      1. We talk about helping people with their physical
        needs, how are you helping others in this huge
        spiritual battle?

        1. Is your influence helping God or Satan?

    7. Friend, there is a supernatural battle going on over your
      soul and the souls of others. Will you join forces with
      God, and engage in this supernatural battle for the
      salvation of others?

  1. Next week: The Time of the End.