Islam in prophecy?
Is there a newscast which does not mention something concerning Islam? Here is the UK they are the fastest growing Faith with Mosques springing up in every town. Christians are confused when they hear of main denomination leaders engaging in talks with Islamic scholars. They see the carnage throughout the world which is done in the name of Islam. They read of the persecution by Muslims in many lands. What are we to make of this world faith and more important does the Bible give us any information that might point to Islam in prophecy?
Please open your Bible at Daniel Chapter 8.
This chapter deals with one of the desolators of Israel. Please read the chapter.
Daniel was told in plain words that the goat represented the kingdom of Greece. Coming from the west to break the power of the Persian Empire. The goat had one horn, but at the height of its power it would be broken and four others would arise in its place. (See Dan 11v4. also)
Alexander the Great precisely fulfilled this prophecy. Without going into the details of the fourfold division, the important one in the chapter is Seleucus, who had dominion over Syria and the west. The Seleucid Empire was founded in 312BC. The land of Israel came under its dominion. The vision went on to tell that out of one of the four horns grew a little horn which:-
‘Would grow exceedingly great toward the south, east and toward the glorious land,
Would grow great, even to the host of heaven,
Would magnify itself against the Prince of princes,
Would cast down God’s sanctuary,
Would cause fearful destruction,
Would trample down the sanctuary for 2,300 days, when it would be restored,
Would be broken by no human hand,
Would extend to the time of the end.’
The Seleucid Empire
The Seleucid Empire carried out a dreadful programme of persecution and destruction against the Jewish people. Many believe that Antiochus Epiphanies (175BC) fulfilled this prophecy, however when we examine the details we see that there is a longer term application. And for this reason:-
1, The Seleucid Empire was one of the four horns, it did not arise out of one of them.
2, The angel said that its power would be broken by no human hand; Antiochus was broken by men. (The Jews rose in revolt under the Maccabaeus family.)
3, The angel said that the prophecy was for the time of the end.
4, The angel said that the vision was to be sealed up, that is, not understood, for many days.
Antiochus Epiphanies presents no analogy to the dual religious-political character of the little horn of the preceding vision.
With Antiochus there is no satisfactory explanation of the 2,300 days duration of the trampling down of the sanctuary.
‘We must therefore look for another religious-political movement which has arisen in the same area, has exalted itself against the true God and the Lord Jesus Christ, has persecuted the people of God, has desecrated God’s sanctuary, and it still in existence. There is no doubt whatever that there has been, and still is, such a power. That power is Islam, and it fulfils the prophecy in every detail.’ (A. Taylor)
1, It has magnified itself against the Prince of princes, placing Muhammad above Christ.
2, It has persecuted the Jewish people most cruelly, and it is still its avowed object to exterminate the State of Israel. (Every Islamic nation surrounding Israel, except Egypt, does not recognise the State of Israel)
3, It has desecrated and cast down God’s sanctuary by building a Muslim mosque on the same site.
4, The power still continues active in these latter days, awaiting the final development of the prophecy.
5, The vision was to be sealed up, that is, not understood, for many days.
One final thought on the 2,300 days. It we us the Day = one year principle, and as one example, to see how this would work out, if we take 334BC which was when Alexander began his campaign of conquest – add 2,300 year to this, and we come to 1967. In this year the Jews took the old city of Jerusalem and possessed the site of the sanctuary for the first time since the Roman destroyed it in AD70. There are other possible starting points but this is just one example.
The sad reality for much of the Christian church today, is that they have also rejected the State of Israel and see the Church as the new Israel. Thus they ignore much of what is happening in the Middle East and see no significance of O.T., prophecy for today.
In Daniel we have the timetable of world history. We would do well to look again at the words of the prophets,
31:10, ‘Hear the word of the Lord, O nations.’
Jer 30v11 ‘For I am with you to save you, says the Lord: I will make a full end of all the nations among whom I scattered you, but of you I will not make a full end.’
‘Bible Prophecy through Israel and Christ’, Alan Taylor B.Sc. (London)