Daniel, [Matthew] and Revelation:
Eschatology through Comparative Study
The Christian faith alone can answer these existential questions with assurance: Where am I from? Where am I going?, Who am I, and Why am I here? Trinitarianism (about God) and creationism (about the origin) answer the first question; soteriology (about salvation) and eschatology (about the end time) answer the others. Soteriology is essential for receiving the everlasting life (justification), while eschatology is important for growing it (sanctification).
Most people know that the best textbook for creationism is Genesis, and for soteriology, it is Romans; but it is not known widely that the best way of learning eschatology is a comparative study of Daniel, part of Matthew, and Revelation. We are taking this approach.
We assume that the Bible is inerrant, and that is should be taken as literally as the context allows. By interpreting the Bible in the context of both literature and history, we derive a partially historicist, mostly futurist, premillennial, and modified dispensational position, with some new insights from the LORD.
Please find below the audion files and sermon notes that we hand out for each specific sermon. They are PDF, printer-friendly, and they can easily be read in your web browser.
Please join us in this adventure!
Pastor Daiqing Yuan, Ph.D.
In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence.
Week #1 ◦ Sunday, May 21, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
A Brief History of Old Testament Israel: The Context of Biblical Phrophecy
Old Testament history has a Pre-Israelite Period (3893-1876 B.C.) and an Israelite Period (1876-6 B.C.), each lasting about two millennia. The latter has the Early Israelite Period (1876-1446 B.C.), the Middle Israelite Period (1446-930 B.C.), and the Later Israelite Period (930-6 B.C.). The last of which has the Divided Monarchy (930-605 B.C.), the Captivity and Return (605-444 B.C.), the Ending of OT and the Intertestamental Period (444-6B.C.). Daniel covers the time from the First Captivity (605 B.C.) to the First Return (534 B.C.)
Week #2 ◦ Sunday, May 28, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
Introduction to the Book of Daniel: "Like a Bridge over Troubled Water"
Daniel is a very special book. It is the most powerful book for Christian apologetics; it is attacked most on authenticity and canonicity; and it is the most diverse in the methods of interpretation. However, it is like a bridge over troubled water, a solid connection between OT and NT.
Week #3 ◦ Sunday, June 4, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
How to Live When the Kingdom of God Seems to Have Fallen: Accepting the First Captivity (Dan 1)
What should believers do when the kingdom of God seemed to have fallen, because the people of God is under God’s judgment? The right attitude is to accept the judgment as righteous, and live by faith in God’s abundant grace.
Week #4 ◦ Sunday, June 11, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
A Panorama of World History: The Vision of the Great Statue (Dan 2)
Nebuchadnezzar’s Vision of the Great Statue revealed God’s plan for the world from the time of Daniel (6th century B.C.) to the end-time: Four worldwide empires followed by the everlasting kingdom of God. This vision focused on the beginning of the Age of the Gentiles (cf. Chap 7)
Week #5 ◦ Sunday, June 18, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
How to Live under Blazing Opposition: The Example of Daniel's Three Friends (Dan 3)
There have been existential threats to the godly Israelites in history, and the godly church today. God certainly can save His people, but whether or not He will depends on His sovereign plan. In all situations, true believers live by faith and maintain faithfulness to the true God.
Week #6 ◦ Sunday, June 25, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
When the Tools of God Become Too Proud: Nebuchadnezzar's Bovinization (Dan 4)
God raises up human leaders, Hebrew or Gentile, godly or evil, as His tools to demonstrate His glory in the world. Nebuchadnezzar was a rod of discipline for God’s people in Judah. When he became too proud and robbed God’s glory, a he learned a hard lesson.
Eschatology ◦ Part 1: Daniel
Week #7 ◦ Sunday, July 2, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
When the Honor of God Is at Issue: Belshazzar and the Writings on the Wall (Dan 5)
God guards His honor with jealousy and almighty power. This not only happened to the first king of the Neo-Babylonian Empire (Nebuchadnezzar), but also to the last king (Belshazzar). If the first one was done with God’s good will and somewhat positive result, the latter one was done with much more negativity and severity. This chapter is parallel to Chapter four.
Suggested way to utilize the below resources: Open a new tab in your web browser, and Chrome seems to work the best with our Abilene Bible Church web pages and associated files, and then when you have two pages open of this specific web page, click on the SERMON HANDOUTS link so that the PDF version of the sermon notes will open in its own window. Then, in the other tab, simply click on the audio player, and the sermon will automatically play. The audio player does not have a time indicator as is the case with YouTube videos, so if you need to stop and come back, it's a good idea to leave your browser running but with the audio player paused.
Week #8 ◦ Sunday, July 9, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
How to Face the Roaring Lions: The Example of Daniel the Author (Dan 6)
Satan is like a roaring lion today, seeking for those whom he can devour (1 Pet 5:8). The same happened before to Prophet Daniel, who literally faced roaring lions. However, his faith led to God shutting off the lions’ mouths. Our faith in the true God does the same today. This chapter is parallel to Chapter Three.
Week #9 ◦ Sunday, July 16, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
A Parallel Panorama: The Vision of the Four Beasts (Dan 7)
Daniel’s Vision of the Four Beasts is a also a panorama of world history, parallel to the one in Nebuchadnezzar’s Vision of the Great Statue in Chap 2. If the previous vision focused on the beginning (Nebuchadnezzar), the latter focused on the end (the Antichrist). The Aramaic portion of Daniel (Chaps 2-7) showed great symmetry, indicating that it should be read as one unit, with the central message at the central chapters (Chaps 4-5): Gentile kings whom God used to humble Israel must be humble before the God of Israel.
Week #10 ◦ Sunday, July 23, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
Persecution by the Minor Antagonist: The Vision of the Two Beasts (Dan 8)
The Vision of the Two Beasts focused on the two empires in the middle of the four-empire scheme. A third-rate Greek ruler got great attention for what he did to the temple in Jerusalem. He is the Minor Antagonist of the people of God, or the Little Antichrist. What he did will be repeated in a greater scale by the Major Antagonist or the Great Antichrist.
Week #11 ◦ Sunday, July 30, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS ◦ ADDITIONAL CHARTS
A Portrait of the Little Antichrist: The Reasons behind the False Interpretations (Dan 8, Pt 2)
Antiochus IV Epiphanes believed in both the “science” of his day and the “faith” of his fathers. He was as “progressive” as it could be. He was for a “one world government” in his day, and he regarded believers of the God of the Bible as the superstitious and backwards “enemies of the state.” People who read the prophecy out of context fail to see the apparent relevance, but use number games to create false interpretations.
Week #12 ◦ Sunday, August 6, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
The Path to the Major Antagonist, Pt 1: The Great Confession by Daniel: How to Remove Ancestral Curses (Dan 9: 1-19)
The sins of the parents have effects on the children (Exod 20:5; Deut 5:9), and unconfessed sins have cumulative compound effects called the ancestral curse. There is only one way to get out of the deserved consequences, and Daniel showed the way.
Week #13 ◦ Sunday, August 13, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
The Path to the Major Antagonist, Pt 2: The Greatest Prophecy in the Bible: The 70 Weeks of Daniel (Dan 9:20-27)
After the greatest confession, God gave the greatest prophecy. The “70 Weeks of Daniel” is God’s plan of restoration for Israel, symmetric to the pattern of God’s judgment on Judah. Historically, people tried many ways of interpretation so that the prophecy might be fulfilled in the way that they prefer. This “chronomessianism” never ended.
Week #14 ◦ Sunday, August 20, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
The Beginning of the Rebuilding Process: The Cause and Timing of the First Return (Dan 10:1 –11:1)
The timing of the First Return is no longer undetermined due to the advance on the chronology of the Medo-Persian Empire. The First Return fulfilled the 70-year exile prophecy (Jer 25:12), and began to realize God’s rebuilding plan for Israel. There is a great spiritual warfare behind the visible events of history; and Christ was the direct cause of the salvific process.
Week #15 ◦ Sunday, August 27, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
The Path to the Minor Antagonist: The Kings of the North and of the South (Dan 11:1-34)
Like the path to the Major Antagonist was carefully scripted in Dan 9:20-27, the path to the Minor Antagonist is also scripted in details in Dan 11:2-34. The amazing precision became a stumbling block for nonbelievers; many demand that it was written ex eventu. But it is can be a great comfort for believers, for apparently God knows the number of our hairs. The symmetry between chaps 9 and 11 seems to be deliberate.
Week #16 ◦ Sunday, September 3, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
Persecution by the Major Antagonist: The End Time Revealed and Sealed (Dan 11:25 –12:13)
God prescribed more actions of the Antichrist in details (11:36-45), prophesied bodily resurrection for all, both the righteous and the evil (12:1-4), and delineated the timing of the transition into the everlasting kingdom of God (12:5-13), precise to the day. The symmetry between chaps 8 and 12 seems also to be deliberate; and it means that Chaps 8-12 is one unit in chiasm, and the central message is in Chap 10, on the beginning of the rebuilding process of Israel. The train had started; and no one can stop its momentum.
Week #17 ◦ Sunday, September 10, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
The Beginning of the Restoration: Spiritual Warfare behind the First Return (Dan 10:1 –11:1)
The First Return is the beginning of God’s restoration program for Israel; and it incorporated God’s plan of saving the Gentiles through the Church Era, too. Great spiritual warfare was behind the visible events of history; and Christ was the central figure.
Week #18 ◦ Sunday, September 17, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
The Path to the Minor Antagonist (Pt 1): A Truncated History of Persia (Dan 11:2-4)
Just as the path to the Major Antagonist was carefully scripted in Dan 9, so is the path to the Minor Antagonist scripted in details in Dan 11. However, three blocks in Dan 11 are accused of different “crimes.” Dan 11:2-4 was accused of being too brief. This observation was used to support the idea that Daniel’s author was late and ignorant of Persian history. If it is not so, why does Daniel cut off abruptly?
Eschatology is a three part series of sermons that Pastor Daiqing Yuan has developed. The below sermons include handouts and audio files, and they were presented from May 21, 2017 through October 15, 2017. As of August 2018, we are in third part of the series, studying Revelation, which can be located in the above drop down menu. We hope to see you at ABC.
Week #19 ◦ Sunday, September 24, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
The Path to the Minor Antagonist (Pt 2): The Kings of the North and the South (Dan 11:5-20)
Dan 11:5-20 offered an amazingly precise picture of the kings of the north (Syria) and the kings of the south (Egypt) during the early Hellenistic Period. It became an obstacle for nonbelievers; and many demanded that the passage must be written ex eventu. However, it can be a comfort for believers, for God knows the numbers of our hairs.
Week #20 ◦ Sunday, October 1, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
The Path to the Minor Antagonist (Pt 3): The Actions of Antiochus IV Epiphanes (Dan 11:21-34)
Dan 11:21-34 described in detail the actions of the Minor Antagonist, who was fulfilled historically in Antiochus IV Epiphanes (175-164 B.C.). What his did was prophetic of what the Major Antagonist (the Antichrist) will do in the future. The symmetry between chaps 9 and 11:1-34 seems to be deliberate.+
Week #21 ◦ Sunday, October 8, 2017 ◦ SERMON HANDOUTS
Persecution by the Major Antagonist (Pt 1): The Actions of the Antichrist (Dan 11:35-45)
Dan 11:35-45 was often misidentified as referring to Antiochus IV, which would not match with history. It comes from and supports the belief that Daniel’s author lived during the life of Antiochus IV, and he tried to predict history but failed. However, it was meant for the Antichrist at the End Time. The descriptions in Dan 2, 7, and 11 are consistent.