RAM AND THE MALE GOAT, PART 2
THE RAM AND THE MALE GOAT
I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram
which had two horns: and the two
horns were high; but one was
higher than the other, and the higher came up last. I saw the ram pushing
westward, and northward, and southward; so that no beasts might stand before
him, neither was there any that
could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became
great. (Daniel 8:3–4, NKJV)
APPEARANCE OF A MAN
though Daniel had interpreted the dream of Nebuchadnezzar and had been given the
vision of the four beasts, both of which were explained to him, we find Daniel
seeking help in interpreting the vision of the ram and the male goat. “Then it
happened, when I, Daniel, had seen the vision and was seeking the meaning, that
suddenly there stood before me one having the appearance of a man.” (Verse
15). Daniel does not say he saw a man, rather he saw one having the appearance
of a man. Who is this appearance of a man? Matthew Henry comments on this
in the appearance of a man (who, some think, was Christ himself, for who besides
could command angels?) orders Gabriel to make Daniel understand this vision.
Sometimes God is pleased to make use of the ministration of angels, not only to
protect his children, but to instruct them, to serve the kind intentions, not
only of his providence, but of his grace.
is possible that this being was indeed a heavenly angel, but as Dr. Henry points
out, it would have had to been an angel that outranked Gabriel and was in such a
position as to give him orders. We read of no such angel in the Bible other than
Michael the archangel. Archangel is defined as a chief or principal angel. This
definition suggests that there may be more than one archangel. While we do not
profess to know everything about the order and kinds of heavenly beings, the
Bible speaks only of one archangel, and that is Michael.
Apostle Paul speaks of an archangel in 1 Thessalonians 4:16, “For the Lord
Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel,
and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.” The
voice of the archangel is paired with the heavenly shout of the Lord Jesus at
His second advent. Clearly, the archangel here is a direct reference to Christ.
is specifically mentioned in Jude verse 9. “Yet Michael the archangel, in
contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not
bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, ‘The Lord rebuke you!’”
This is not an easy verse to understand, but it is understood by most scholars
that Michael the archangel in this verse is actually Christ. Adam Clarke
comments on the traditional Jewish understanding of Michael:
this personage many things are spoken in the Jewish writings “Rabbi Judah
Hakkodesh says: Wherever Michael is said to appear, the glory of the Divine
Majesty is always to be understood.” So that it seems as if they considered
Michael in some sort as we do the Messiah manifested in the flesh.
Dr. Clarke also points out that the name Michael is composed of three Hebrew words: Mi, who; ke, like; and El, God—he who is like God. Michael also appears in Daniel 12:1 where it is said He delivers the people; and again in Revelation 12:7 where He and His angels fight with the dragon. We have encountered “One like the Son of Man” in the vision of the four beasts and found this person to be a manifestation of Messiah, God incarnate in Christ. It is, therefore, not unreasonable to accept that this appearance of a man is actually Christ commanding Gabriel to explain the vision to Daniel.
for concrete proof of the identity of “the appearance of a man” we can turn
to Philippians 2:8 and see that this expression specifically applies to Christ
in His role of Messiah and Savior:
being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the
point of death, even the death of the cross.
explains to Daniel in verse 20, “The ram which you saw, having the two
horns—they are the kings of
Media and Persia.” In verse three the ram is described as having two horns,
both of which were high, but one was higher than the other and was said to have
come up last.
the study of the prophecy of the four beasts we learned that the kingdoms of
Media and Persia were not originally one-at-the-same. Both of the horns on the
ram are described as being high. The Hebrew word translated “high” means
powerful and arrogant. These qualities are not identical, but there is a
cause-and-effect relationship that can work both ways: power can beget
arrogance; and, arrogance can beget power.
Medes were first to set out to expand their empire. In the vision, Daniel sees
the ram pushing in three directions: westward towards Babylon, Syria, Greece,
and Asia Minor; northward towards the Lydians, Armenians, and the Scythians;
and, southward towards Arabia, Ethiopia, and Egypt. The Medes were indeed
powerful and they subdued many lesser kingdoms. But in the arrogance of their
power they attempted more than they could accomplish. They could not subdue the
kingdom of Babylon.
our earlier studies we found that the Persians were more developed in their
military skills than were the Medes. It so happened that Darius, king of the
Medes, was the uncle of Cyrus the Persian. Taking advantage of this family
relationship, Darius brought Cyrus and the Persian army into the conquest of
Babylon. History records that Cyrus defeated the Babylonian army. Darius, being
the king of Media, was given the honor of taking the capital city, Babylon, as
is recorded in the fifth chapter of Daniel.
the defeat of Babylon, the power of the Medo-Persian empire resided with Cyrus
the Persian, the Persians being the horn that came up last on the ram and is the
higher, or more powerful, of the two. The Persians were so powerful at this time
that no other nation could stand against them. The Persians were able to achieve
the conquests the Medes could only dream about.
tells Daniel who the male goat is in verse 21, “And the male goat is
the kingdom of Greece. The large horn that is
between its eyes is the first
king.” The vision of the male goat is given in verses 5–8:
as I was considering, suddenly a male goat came from the west, across the
surface of the whole earth, without touching the ground; and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes. Then he came to the ram that
had two horns, which I had seen standing beside the river, and ran at him with
furious power. And I saw him confronting the ram; he was moved with rage against
him, attacked the ram, and broke his two horns. There was no power in the ram to
withstand him, but he cast him down to the ground and trampled him; and there
was no one that could deliver the ram from his hand. Therefore the male goat
grew very great; but when he became strong, the large horn was broken, and in
place of it four notable ones came up toward the four winds of heaven.
Male Goat appears suddenly coming from the west, the direction of the
Mediterranean Sea. It came across the surface of the whole earth without even
touching the ground. Some ridiculous interpretations have come out of the minds
of Bible scholars who see predictions of modern warfare and commerce in the
symbolism of these prophecies. The goat coming across the whole earth without
touching the ground has no reference to aircraft. These ancient armies did not
have air forces, so there were no bombers or fighter planes involved in the
campaigns of the male goat. The flying goat depicts the swiftness with which
Greece pressed its conquest of the then known world. It is astounding that it
accomplished it takeover of the world in only six years. This was achieved by an
army that did not have transport aircraft, tanks, or tucks; they marched on foot
and overwhelmed the world.
male goat has a notable horn between his eyes. This horn is Alexander the Great,
the military genius of his time, and one of the greatest military geniuses of
all time. This horn is a notable horn. The Hebrew word for “notable” is khaw-zooth,
meaning “a look,” and understood to refer to mean a striking appearance.
This does not refer to the physical appearance of Alexander; instead, it refers
to the striking appearance of his military genius, which will be commented upon
six and seven give the account of the overthrow of the Persian Empire by
Alexander. The Male Goat ran at the Ram with furious power and rage, threw him
to the ground, and trampled him. These three actions are prophetic of the three
major battles in which Greece overpowered and defeated the Persian Emperor,
Darius Codomannus, also known as Dairus III.
Male Goat was moved with rage and ran at the Ram. This is the brief record of
the first battle in May 344 b.c. at Granicus in northwestern Asia Minor near
Troy. In this battle the Persians lost about 2000 men. The loss of men was not
as significant as the loss of the battle. The object of this battle was for the
Persians to stop the Greeks from crossing the Hellespont and coming into Asia
Minor. The result of the Greek victory was that Alexander was able to occupy
about half of Asia Minor.
Male Goat throwing the Ram to the ground refers to the second battle in November
333 b.c. in southern Asia Minor near the Gulf of Issus. In this battle the
Persians lost about 100,000 men, a significant blow to the Persian military
strength. It seemed in this battle that the Persians had the upper hand and
Alexander was forced into a defensive posture. The Greeks were caught off guard
by a large flanking movement on the part of the Persians. The record has
Alexander mounting a horse and leading his cavalry in a direct assault against
Darius, who then fled from the battlefield. When the Persian army saw their
leader fleeing the battle, their morale broke, they were put to route, and were
defeated. The result of this battle was the total occupation of Asia Minor by
Male Goat then trampled the Ram. This foreshadows the Battle of Gaugemela in May
331 b.c., which led to the final defeat of the Persian army. Gaugemela, also
Male Goat grew very great. The Greeks under the leadership of Alexander
conquered the then known world but just at the moment of their great
accomplishment the large horn was broken off. Alexander lived from July 20, 356
b.c. to June 10, 323 b.c. He was just twenty years old when he started his
conquest of the world; he was about 26 when he defeated Darius III; and he was
about 32 when he died. He was certainly notable as portrayed in the prophecy.
the place of the great horn, “four notable ones came up toward the four winds
of heaven.” Alexander left no son to follow him. In the absence of an heir,
the empire was divided into four parts, each controlled by one of his generals.
Ptolemy Lagi controlled Egypt, Palestine, Arabia, and Peterea and was assisted
by Seleucus. Antigonus controlled Syria, Babylonia, and central Asia. Cassander
controlled Macedonia and Greece. Lysimachus controlled Thrace and Bithynia.