Proper 29 • Daniel 7:9–10; 13–14 • November 25, 2012
By Paul Philp
The divine court comes to order in Daniel’s vision within this text. Daniel first beholds the thrones being placed and the Ancient of Days taking his seat upon his throne. The description Daniel provides of the Ancient of Days emphasizes his holiness (hair like pure wool), and images which evoke images of Yahweh’s presence at Mt. Sinai and Christ in the Book of Revelation. Yahweh Sabbaoth, seated upon the throne of Heaven, is being served by a myriad (though finite because they are created beings) number of angels. The books are opened and judgment will now be meted out.
The content of the books may well include the deeds of those upon whom judgment is about to be carried out. The data in these books is effectively the evidence against those who have sinned against the Ancient of Days. These books contain the basis upon which those who are to be judged might be condemned. These books carry with them the full weight of the law, as do the books in Revelation 20:12.
Daniel’s vision of the court scene is interrupted momentarily by verses 11–12, which are not part of the appointed text. In these verses Daniel beholds the beast being killed. After the interruption to the vision, Daniel once again beholds the throne room and one, like a son of man, takes his seat with the Ancient of Days. Daniel beholds the Christ standing before God the Father. He, the Christ, is given “dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him.” The kingdom is bestowed upon the Christ. He has defeated the beast; he has accomplished the purpose for which he was sent.
Daniel beholds a post-ascension Heaven where Christ’s victory has already been accomplished. Daniel beholds the Christ rewarded for the work of salvation.
Daniel beholds the victory that will be given to those who stood under the judgment in the opening scene of the vision. The names in the book together with every sin in those books are no longer the basis upon which the Ancient of Days will judge. The Ancient of Days, Yahweh Sabbaoth, will judge based upon the merits of he who appears like a son of man, Jesus the Christ. Christ’s kingdom will not be destroyed.
- The court of judgment convened.
- One like a son of man appears.
- The son of man is enthroned (Christ is victorious).