“And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him.” Daniel 11:45

There is a great deal of controversy regarding the correct interpretation of Daniel 11:45. This verse states that the king of the north (the papacy) shall plant the tabernacles of his palace, his union of church and state, between the seas “in” the glorious holy mountain. While those giving the third angel’s message teach that this verse should correctly be interpreted as saying “and” the glorious holy mountain. This article will seek to demonstrate that the Papacy does not enter in (and thereby conquer) the glorious holy mountain which is the church triumphant in Daniel 11:45. But rather, the events depicted in this verse represent the final conflict between the remnant and the papacy. This conflict takes place and ends with the papacy’s destruction outside the holy city.
 
 

Papacy Does Not Conquer The Remnant

Hebrew scholars have stated that the word translated “in” in Daniel 11:45 can also be translated as “and.” But the truth of this verse does not hinge upon the Hebrew but on the testimony of all the prophets as revealed through the types of scripture. William Miller’s rules of interpretation state that “God has revealed things to come by visions, in figures and parables” and in order to understand what the Bible teaches on any subject these visions, figures and parables must be combined.1 This is the method of biblical interpretation delineated in Isaiah 28:9-13 and it is the method used by those who give the third angel’s message. This is also the method that must be used in order to acquire a correct understanding of Daniel 11:45.

The understanding that the king of the north enters “in” the glorious holy mountain is also problematic on the grounds of what it means for him to enter into the church within the context of Daniel 11:40-45. Daniel 11:40 states that the king of the north shall “enter into the countries, and shall over flow and pass over”:

“And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over.” Daniel 11:40

The entering into the countries here represents the papacy’s conquest of the countries that comprised the Soviet Union at the end of the Cold War.2

The following verse shows the king of the north then entering into the glorious land and overthrowing many:

“He shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown: but these shall escape out of his hand, even Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon.” Daniel 11:41

Verse 41 presents the spiritual conquest of the United States by the papacy at the passing of the national Sunday law (See The Great Controversy, 573.1).

The reader is then confronted by the fact that the king of the north is stated as entering “in” the glorious holy mountain in verse 45. The question to be answered then is, does the papacy conquer the church in this verse? That is what it would mean for him to enter into the glorious holy mountain. The Bible teaches that this will not take place. That the church will be triumphant in the final battle is a subject of bible prophecy and it is clearly communicated in the following typologies.
 
 

Daniel 11:45 is Armageddon

Daniel 11:45 presents the final battle in which the papacy interposes the “tabernacles of his palace,” his union of church and state or Sunday Law, between God’s church and the people of the world. The papacy will do this in order to block the three angel’s messages (the tidings out of the east and north in Daniel 11:44) from reaching the world. This battle closes with the papacy coming to his end with none to help him. This is brought about by the standing up of Michael in Daniel 12:1. Michael stands to close human probation and this is followed by the outpouring of the seven last plagues upon the wicked.

The book of Revelation presents these events in the gathering of the nations to Armageddon. The word Armageddon is a combination of two Hebrew words; “Har” meaning mount and “Megiddo” meaning slaughter – making Armageddon or the “mount of slaughter.” It is the symbolic place where the enemies of God’s people are gathered for the final conflict and destroyed.

“And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. 14 For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty. 16 And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon. 19 And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath.” Revelation 16:13-14, 16, 19

“And after that I looked, and, behold, the temple of the tabernacle of the testimony in heaven was opened: 6 And the seven angels came out of the temple, having the seven plagues, clothed in pure and white linen, and having their breasts girded with golden girdles. 7 And one of the four beasts gave unto the seven angels seven golden vials full of the wrath of God, who liveth for ever and ever.” Revelation 15:5-7
 
 

The Types of Armageddon Reveal the Antitype

Therefore in order to understand Armageddon and its location at the end of the world, we must look to the types of this event throughout the bible. Where did the typical battles of Armageddon take place? What was their prophetic-geographic setting? Did they take place within Jerusalem, which is the church? Or did they take place without the camp? Consider the following illustration:

“And Sisera gathered together all his chariots, even nine hundred chariots of iron, and all the people that were with him, from Harosheth of the Gentiles unto the river of Kishon. 14 And Deborah said unto Barak, Up; for this is the day in which the LORD hath delivered Sisera into thine hand: is not the LORD gone out before thee? So Barak went down from mount Tabor, and ten thousand men after him. 15 And the LORD discomfited Sisera, and all his chariots, and all his host, with the edge of the sword before Barak; so that Sisera lighted down off his chariot, and fled away on his feet. 16 But Barak pursued after the chariots, and after the host, unto Harosheth of the Gentiles: and all the host of Sisera fell upon the edge of the sword; and there was not a man left.” Judges 4:13-16

“The kings came and fought, then fought the kings of Canaan in Taanach by the waters of Megiddo; they took no gain of money. 20 They fought from heaven; the stars in their courses fought against Sisera. 21 The river of Kishon swept them away, that ancient river, the river Kishon. O my soul, thou hast trodden down strength.” Judges 5:19-21

The battle between Barak, the captain of the Lord’s host and Sisera, the captain of the Canaanite army, took place at Megiddo. In this type of the final conflict Sisera’s host was defeated and their bodies were swept away by the river Kishon. The Kishon river runs through the whole length of the valley of Megiddo to the Mediterranean Sea. Both Megiddo and the River Kishon lie north of the city of Jerusalem. Neither did Sisera or his army enter at all into Jerusalem in the course of this battle. Therefore the antitypical battle of Megiddo does not take in the glorious holy mountain which is the church. It will take place and close with the destruction of the wicked without their ever entering into Jerusalem.

The battle between Elijah and the prophets of Baal symbolizes the spiritual battle between the Third Elijah (the people of the Third Angel’s message) and their enemies. This battle, like that depicted in Daniel 11:45, centered on true worship. As Elijah called God’s people to the worship of the true God, so the end-time remnant will call the world to true worship through the proclamation of the three angel’s messages. As Baal’s prophets opposed Elijah, so will the False Prophet and the Papacy seek to prevent the three angel’s messages from reaching the world. This conflict took place at Mount Carmel which lies adjacent to the river Kishon and in close proximity to the valley of Megiddo (1 Kings 18:19). After the prophets of Baal were defeated they were taken and destroyed by the river Kishon.

“Hear me, O LORD, hear me, that this people may know that thou art the LORD God, and that thou hast turned their heart back again. 38 Then the fire of the LORD fell, and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench. 39 And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The LORD, he is the God; the LORD, he is the God. 40 And Elijah said unto them, Take the prophets of Baal; let not one of them escape. And they took them: and Elijah brought them down to the brook Kishon, and slew them there.” 1 Kings 18:37-40

Thus through this simple type it can be seen that the final conflict does not take place within Jerusalem. The King of North will fight against Jerusalem but he will by no means enter into it or conquer it.
 
 

Where does the Papacy Comes to His End?

Taking note of where the papacy comes to his end also sheds light on the events of Daniel 11:45. The Assyrian in the following passage is a symbol of the king of the north (spiritual Babylon) in Daniel 11:45 (Zephaniah 2:13). As literal Babylon came from the north to war against the southern kingdom of Judah, so the Assyrians came from the north to capture the Northern kingdom of Israel.  Although the Assyrian wars against Zion he is depicted as coming to his end at Nob:

“Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD of hosts, O my people that dwellest in Zion, be not afraid of the Assyrian: he shall smite thee with a rod, and shall lift up his staff against thee, after the manner of Egypt. 25 For yet a very little while, and the indignation shall cease, and mine anger in their destruction. 26 And the LORD of hosts shall stir up a scourge for him according to the slaughter of Midian at the rock of Oreb: and as his rod was upon the sea, so shall he lift it up after the manner of Egypt. 27 And it shall come to pass in that day, that his burden shall be taken away from off thy shoulder, and his yoke from off thy neck, and the yoke shall be destroyed because of the anointing. 32 As yet shall he remain at Nob that day: he shall shake his hand against the mount of the daughter of Zion, the hill of Jerusalem. 33 Behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, shall lop the bough with terror: and the high ones of stature shall be hewn down, and the haughty shall be humbled. 34 And he shall cut down the thickets of the forest with iron, and Lebanon shall fall by a mighty one.” Isaiah 10:24-27, 32-34

Nob is Mount Scopus, which is the northernmost summit of the Mount of Olives, about two miles northeast of Jerusalem. Thus showing that while the papacy shall war against Zion, he shall meet his end. In the day of this conflict God shall destroy him outside the walls of Jerusalem – “he shall remain at Nob in that day.”

In the following passage Joel describes the northern army as coming to its end in a barren and desolate land:

“But I will remove far off from you the northern army, and will drive him into a land barren and desolate, with his face toward the east sea, and his hinder part toward the utmost sea, and his stink shall come up, and his ill savour shall come up, because he hath done great things.” Joel 2:20

The king of the north comes to his end “with his face toward the east sea, and his hinder part toward the utmost sea” – or “between the seas” as it is stated in Daniel 11:45. This place between the seas is also a “land barren and desolate.” This barren and desolate land is not the church as God’s people will have received the full outpouring of the latter rain in order to enable them to give the “tidings out of the east and out the north.” The latter rain transforms the church from a barren wilderness into a fruitful forest (Isaiah 32:13-15, James 5:7, Isaiah 55:10, Joel 2:23-24). Therefore the papacy does not enter the church in Daniel 11:45; nor does he perish there. He meets his end in another land altogether.

Joel also marks the end of the wicked as taking place in the valley of Jehoshaphat:

“And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit. And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the Lord come. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the Lord hath said, and in the remnant whom the Lord shall call. For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land. And they have cast lots for my people; and have given a boy for an harlot, and sold a girl for wine, that they might drink. Yea, and what have ye to do with me, O Tyre, and Zidon, and all the coasts of Palestine? will ye render me a recompense? and if ye recompense me, swiftly and speedily will I return your recompense upon your own head; Because ye have taken my silver and my gold, and have carried into your temples my goodly pleasant things: The children also of Judah and the children of Jerusalem have ye sold unto the Grecians, that ye might remove them far from their border. Behold, I will raise them out of the place whither ye have sold them, and will return your recompense upon your own head: And I will sell your sons and your daughters into the hand of the children of Judah, and they shall sell them to the Sabeans, to a people far off: for the Lord hath spoken it. Proclaim ye this among the Gentiles; Prepare war, wake up the mighty men, let all the men of war draw near; let them come up: Beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruninghooks into spears: let the weak say, I am strong. Assemble yourselves, and come, all ye heathen, and gather yourselves together round about: thither cause thy mighty ones to come down, O Lord. Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat: for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about. Put ye in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe: come, get you down; for the press is full, the vats overflow; for their wickedness is great. Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision. The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars shall withdraw their shining. The Lord also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the Lord will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel. So shall ye know that I am the Lord your God dwelling in Zion, my holy mountain: then shall Jerusalem be holy, and there shall no strangers pass through her any more.” Joel:2:28–3:21

Jehoshaphat means “Jehovah judged.” The valley of Jehoshaphat is the Kidron valley which is located between Jerusalem and the Mount of Olives; again demonstrating that the enemies of God’s people come to their end outside Jerusalem.

Another instructive type is the battle between Josiah and Pharaoh Necho in the valley of Megiddo:

“After all this, when Josiah had prepared the temple, Necho king of Egypt came up to fight against Carchemish by Euphrates: and Josiah went out against him. 21 But he sent ambassadors to him, saying, What have I to do with thee, thou king of Judah? I come not against thee this day, but against the house wherewith I have war: for God commanded me to make haste: forbear thee from meddling with God, who is with me, that he destroy thee not. 22 Nevertheless Josiah would not turn his face from him, but disguised himself, that he might fight with him, and hearkened not unto the words of Necho from the mouth of God, and came to fight in the valley of Megiddo. 23 And the archers shot at king Josiah; and the king said to his servants, Have me away; for I am sore wounded. 24 His servants therefore took him out of that chariot, and put him in the second chariot that he had; and they brought him to Jerusalem, and he died, and was buried in one of the sepulchres of his fathers. And all Judah and Jerusalem mourned for Josiah.” 2 Chronicles 35:20-24

In the context of this conflict, Necho represents those sent of God and king Josiah represents those who will not hearken to the heaven sent message. This battle ended with the death of Josiah at Megiddo and his dead body being carried back to Jerusalem:

“In his days Pharaohnechoh king of Egypt went up against the king of Assyria to the river Euphrates: and king Josiah went against him; and he slew him at Megiddo, when he had seen him. 30 And his servants carried him in a chariot dead from Megiddo, and brought him to Jerusalem, and buried him in his own sepulchre. And the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, and anointed him, and made him king in his father’s stead.” 2 Kings 23:29-30

This type presents the two classes in the great controversy and the end of those who will not obey the gospel. Josiah allied himself with Babylon in order to make war against Pharaoh Necho. And in his fate can be seen the fate of those who ally themselves with spiritual Babylon in the antitypical battle of Armageddon. As Josiah met his end in Megiddo so will the wicked that war against the people of the third angel perish without entering into the holy city.
 
 

In Closing

It is the testimony of scripture that the king of the north wars against, but never enters (and thereby conquers) the glorious holy mountain. This conclusion stands not on the Hebrew of Daniel 11:45 (which can be translated either way) but on the united testimony of the prophets. The Bible says the spirit of the prophets is subject to the prophets, and that God is not the author of confusion (1 Corinthians 14:32-33). To interpret Daniel 11:45 as stating that the papacy enters into the glorious holy mountain would be to make the prophet Daniel disagree with the other inspired writers who are all telling the same story through types and symbols.
 
 
1 Those who give the third angel’s message will be studying and interpreting the scriptures using the same heaven ordained principles as William Miller:

Those who are engaged in proclaiming the third angel’s message are searching the Scriptures upon the same plan that Father Miller adopted. In the little book entitled “Views of the Prophecies and Prophetic Chronology,” Father Miller gives the following simple but intelligent and important rules for Bible study and interpretation:

“1. Every word must have its proper bearing on the subject presented in the Bible; 2. All Scripture is necessary, and may be understood by diligent application and study; 3. Nothing revealed in Scripture can or will be hid from those who ask in faith, not wavering; 4. To understand doctrine, bring all the scriptures together on the subject you wish to know, then let every word have its proper influence; and if you can form your theory without a contradiction, you cannot be in error; 5. Scripture must be its own expositor, since it is a rule of itself. If I depend on a teacher to expound to me, and he should guess at its meaning, or desire to have it so on account of his sectarian creed, or to be thought wise, then his guessing, desire, creed, or wisdom is my rule, and not the Bible.”

“The above is a portion of these rules; and in our study of the Bible we shall all do well to heed the principles set forth.” {RH, November 25, 1884 par. 23 – 25}

See Miller’s Rules of Bible Interpretation for the entire list of rules.
 
2 For more information on Daniel 11:40-45 read “Time of the End” Magazine

 

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