- How alike? How different? Before we take up the study of Daniel 8, let’s look at Daniel 7 and focus on how the two chapters are different from each other even though both deal with similar content. But first, what is missing in Daniel 8 that was emphasized in Daniel 7? Second, what is the basic content of chapter 8 compared to the central content of Chapter 7? Now we’ll consider the details.
- The ram and the goat. First a ram, and then a goat takes center stage in this drama. The ram has two horns but is running in three directions: west, north, and south. What do the two horns represent? What is the importance of three directions the ram is taking at the same time? How strong do you think the Medo-Persian government was? Then the goat comes, running so fast its feet don’t touch the ground. Who is the famous monarch represented by the goat? As strong as the goat may be, what happens to its biggest horn? How was that prophecy fulfilled?
- The rise of the little horn. From one of the goat’s four horns, a little horn shows up. In what direction does the little horn go? What power does the little horn, represent? What seems to be its goal? After it accomplishes wars against Jewish people and even early Christians, does Rome (the goat) disappear? The little horn rapidly becomes the chief player in this drama. What are the two characteristics of the little horn (Rome) at this time? Does the little horn exist in any way today? Explain.
- The attack on the sanctuary. What is the difference between the murder of thousands of Christians by pagan leaders and attacks by the little horn on God’s people through the ages? Or is there a difference? How does the papal power establish itself to eliminate the intercessory ministry in the heavenly sanctuary? Explain how acts of the papacy have served to abolish the Word of God from full devotion and place papal tradition above the Bible. How does the Seventh-day Adventist church regard these actions and what if anything can we or should we do about them?
- The cleansing of the sanctuary.Cheerful words, these. Right? Once in a while we hear a devout church member state that all of the details of the sanctuary on earth will be present in the final sanctuary service in heaven, and of course that’s right, except—Do you think we’ll offer sacrifices of live animals in the heavenly sanctuary? What is contained in the heavenly sanctuary that makes it in need of a thorough cleansing? How is the blood of Jesus given at Calvary represented in the heavenly sanctuary?