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Easton's Bible Dictionary

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Daniel, Book of
Daniel, Book of

The historical part of the book treats of the period of the Captivity. Daniel is "the historian of the Captivity, the writer who alone furnishes any series of events for that dark and dismal period during which the harp of Israel hung on the trees that grew by the Euphrates. His narrative may be said in general to intervene between Kings and Chronicles on the one hand and Ezra on the other, or (more strictly) to fill out the sketch which the author of the Chronicles gives in a single verse in his last chapter: 'And them that had escaped from the sword carried he [i.e., Nebuchadnezzar] away to Babylon; where they were servants to him and his sons until the reign of the kingdom of Persia'" (2 Chronicles 36:20).

The prophetical part consists of three visions and one lengthened prophetical communication.

The genuineness of this book has been much disputed, but the arguments in its favour fully establish its claims.

  • We have the testimony of Christ (Matthew 24:15; 25:31; 26:64) and his apostles (1 Corinthians 6:2; 2th 2:3) for its authority; and (2) the important testimony of (Ezekiel 14:14,20; 28:3).
  • The character and records of the book are also entirely in harmony with the times and circumstances in which the author lived.
  • The linguistic character of the book is, moreover, just such as might be expected. Certain portions (Daniel 2:4; 7) are written in the Chaldee language; and the portions written in Hebrew are in a style and form having a close affinity with the later books of the Old Testament, especially with that of Ezra. The writer is familiar both with the Hebrew and the Chaldee, passing from the one to the other just as his subject required. This is in strict accordance with the position of the author and of the people for whom his book was written. That Daniel is the writer of this book is also testified to in the book itself (7:1,28; 8:2; 9:2; 10:1,2; 12:4,5). (See BELSHAZZAR .)


  • Copyright Statement
    These dictionary topics are from M.G. Easton M.A., D.D., Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Third Edition, published by Thomas Nelson, 1897. Public Domain, copy freely.

    Bibliography Information
    Easton, Matthew George. "Entry for 'Daniel, Book of'". "Easton's Bible Dictionary".
    <http://classic.studylight.org/dic/ebd/view.cgi?number=T970>. 1897.

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