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The “Little Horn” of Daniel chapter 7, a review of a paper by Clifton Emahiser
In his monthly Watchman’s Teaching Letters for 2002, Clifton Emahiser had sought to explain elements of the books of the prophet Daniel and the Revelation in an endeavor to refute the fallacies of what we call Futurism and Preterism, and to demonstrate the importance of the historical, or Historicist interpretation of prophecy as a key to understanding the Word of Yahweh our God. Doing that, Clifton had many other digressions as he progressed, and he discussed the two different descriptions of a “little horn” in Daniel in different ways. This shorter paper, The "Little Horn" of Daniel 7:8, was compiled from those studies.
Among denominational Christians, there are many foolish ways to interpret Scripture, and many ways to describe or label them. There is futurism, full preterism, partial preterism, millennialism or chiliasm, amillennialism or chillegorism, premillennialism and postmillennialism, and some of these overlap or encompass one another. There are even panmillennialists, who apparently believe that in the end, eschatology is not important at all because evidently, they also believe that everyone gets a participation trophy from God.
Nearly all of these labels mean nothing to us, as they only represent insidious refinements of three basic ideas. To describe them briefly, futurists maintain that all so-called “end times” prophecy is yet to take place, generally over a seven-year span at some distant time in the future. But preterists believe that all prophecy was fulfilled by 70 AD, and therefore I can only assume that they also think that ever since then Jesus has been hanging around in some sort of limbo helplessly waiting for us to come to Him. But historicists understand that prophecy has been unfolding all along, and as time has passed it has been incrementally fulfilled. As various of the apostles had testified on more than one occasion, we are already in the so-called “end times”, or the “last days”, ever since the first incarnation of the Christ. These descriptions may not be perfect or satisfy everyone, but they are generally accurate.
I must also state, observing the attitude of the so-called panmillennialists, that if the laws of God and the history presented in the Bible are not important to someone, then neither is eschatology because he will never be able to learn anything from that study. So eat, drink and be merry, because tomorrow you shall die – even if tomorrow takes longer than a day to get here.
However historicists also often make fools of themselves. A notable example is found in the popular interpretations of the messages to the seven churches in the Revelation which make each of them out to be particular periods in the history of Christianity. Some historicists have gone so far as to attach precise dates to the duration of each of those churches, right up to modern times, believing that each of them reflected the attitudes or spiritual conditions of the church in particular historical periods. But none of that can be deduced from the text, and all seven of those churches were addressed contemporaneously, in the present tense at the time when John had written, as they had each existed at that time. When we examine the messages to each church and compare them to the world around us, we see that there are aspects of each message which are still fully apparent among the Christians of today. Those aspects have always been among Christians.
Other foolish traps for historicists are date-setting for prophecies which themselves do not necessarily describe dates for particular events, especially when setting dates for prophecies which have not necessarily been fulfilled, as if they themselves can tell the future, or forcing interpretations to fit the events of their own times, as men often esteem their own times to be of critical importance. As we have often said, the prophecy of God does not exist so that men can foretell the future. Rather, it exists so that we, observing history, can look back and see that God is true. Now we may add, that if we draw the correct lessons from the past and from prophecy, we may be better able to understand what is happening in the present, but we still won’t be able to predict the future because while the Word of God is indeed true, we cannot tell how it is going to be fulfilled. Far too often, prophesies have been fulfilled in ways that men could never have imagined. For example, the Israelites had their backs to the Red Sea knowing they would escape Pharaoh’s armies, but never foresaw the parting of the sea, and the apostles never foresaw the betrayal of Judas and the crucifixion of Christ, even after Christ had told them what was going to happen.
Understanding at least many of the potential traps and pitfalls which an interpreter of prophesy must consider, it is nevertheless quite obvious that there are prophecies especially in Daniel which were not fulfilled until long after the time of Christ, long after 70 AD, but which have indeed been fulfilled. The most significant of them are found in Daniel chapters 2, 7 and 8. In Daniel chapter 2 we see a description of an image of a man with major body parts made of four different metals, each of them representing a world empire which would rule one after another “wheresoever the children of men dwell”. Daniel informing Nebuchadnezzar that he himself had represented the image’s head of gold, we must look to the succeeding empires, the Persian, Greek and Roman, for the other three parts of the image, as the other three were described as kingdoms which would follow his own. Those empires certainly do seem to fit the descriptions of the various parts of the image of the beast, and speaking of the end of the fourth and final kingdom of the image, the Roman empire and its fall are clearly described, and that did not happen for several centuries after 70 AD. These facts, and many other obviously correct historical interpretations of prophecy, should make both preterists and futurists quite uncomfortable.
Some years later, as it is described in Daniel chapter 7, the prophet had a similar vision of four beasts, and dominion being given to each of them in succession, it is evident that these represent the same word empires as those which were prophesied in the vision of Daniel chapter 2, although they are being described from a different perspective. This vision in Daniel chapter 7 also covers a somewhat broader scope and describes things which follow the passing of the fourth empire, the Roman empire, which the vision in chapter 2 did not describe. This is another instance of Hebrew parallelism, even if the chapters are not consecutive.
So we shall read the opening verses of Daniel chapter 7: “1 In the first year of Belshazzar king of Babylon Daniel had a dream and visions of his head upon his bed: then he wrote the dream, and told the sum of the matters. 2 Daniel spake and said, I saw in my vision by night, and, behold, the four winds of the heaven strove upon the great sea. 3 And four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse one from another. 4 The first was like a lion, and had eagle's wings: I beheld till the wings thereof were plucked, and it was lifted up from the earth, and made stand upon the feet as a man, and a man's heart was given to it. 5 And behold another beast, a second, like to a bear, and it raised up itself on one side, and it had three ribs in the mouth of it between the teeth of it: and they said thus unto it, Arise, devour much flesh. 6 After this I beheld, and lo another, like a leopard, which had upon the back of it four wings of a fowl; the beast had also four heads; and dominion was given to it. 7 After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had ten horns.”
With this understanding, it is evident that the first beast was the Babylonian empire, and the second the Persian. Perhaps the three ribs in the mouth of the bear represent the territory of three former empires which the Persians came to rule over, the Egyptian, Assyrian and Babylonian. Then came the empire of Alexander, which came and passed swiftly as a leopard, and the Greeks divided it into four parts as soon as he died, hence the four heads. Finally, the fourth beast represents the Roman empire, and the subsequent passages related to things which had transpired in history after it also had passed.
This is the historicist view of prophecy. If it seems to be preterist, or as some fools claim, partially preterist, that is only because now we are looking back nearly 2,600 years after Daniel wrote, and over 1,500 years after the passing of the fourth beast empire of his visions. But in Daniel’s time at least some of the interpretation would have seemed to be futurist, because it had not yet been fulfilled and therefore it could not as of yet have been identified or its fulfillment described by men. Men cannot explain the fulfillment of any prophecy until after it happens and they have had time to reflect on it. So it was also with the apostles and the gospel and ministry of Christ.
Now this brings us to the “little horn” of verse 8 of Daniel chapter 7, and the subject in the title of Clifton’s paper, so he begins:
The “Little Horn” of Daniel 7:8 by Clifton Emahiser
To begin our subject, we must understand there are two “little horns” in the book of Daniel, (1) the catholic pope, and (2) Mohammed. The following is what I stated in Watchman’s Teaching Letter # 55: “In Watchman’s Teaching Letter # 54 for October, 2002, we discussed the ‘little horn’ of Daniel 8:9. As I had pointed out, the ‘little horn’ in that passage is not the same as the ‘little horn’ of Daniel 7:8. How often have you read or heard someone referring to the ‘little horn’ of Daniel, but they never indicate which ‘little horn’ of Daniel they are talking about? To many, both [of these] ‘little horns’ are the same entity in their reasoning, and that simply is not true. To comprehend where we are on our walk through Daniel, you will need back issue #’s 49, 53 & 54. In lesson # 54, we established that the ‘little horn’ of Daniel 8:9 was Mohammed.”
Now Clifton concludes from that citation:
With this paper we will consider only the ‘little horn’ of Daniel 7:8. This is imperative to grasp the book of Revelation.
An understanding of this prophecy in Daniel chapter 7 is indeed a prerequisite to understanding the prophecy of Revelation chapter 13. Or perhaps, it may be said that once Daniel chapter 7 is interpreted historically, a corollary interpretation of Revelation chapter 13 may be justly ascertained. In Daniel chapter 7 there is described a series of beast empires, described as beasts, and then a little horn which comes up from out of the head of the last of those beasts. This interpretation of these first 8 verses is reaffirmed later in the chapter, especially in verses 17, 20 and thereafter. Then much later, in Revelation chapter 13 there is a description of two beasts which shall rule over men successively, and it is evident that the first beast was also a description of that same series of empires found prophesied in Daniel, while the second, which comes from the wounded head of the first, is an entity which would rule over men after the first beast had passed much in the same way that we see described of this little horn here in Daniel chapter 7.
Continuing with Clifton:
Symbolic Prophecies: In chapters 7 and 8, we are dealing with symbolic rather than literal interpretation. Both of these symbolic prophecies are concerned with ‘little horns’ representing powers that arise out of two of the beasts that represent great empires of history. Notice they are not those great empires themselves, but specific powers that rose out of them.
In other words, in Daniel chapter 7 there is a little horn which arises from the head of the fourth beast of the visions described at the beginning of the chapter. The fourth beast being the Roman empire, the horn comes from the head of that beast. But in Daniel chapter 8 there is a different vision, one of a ram that magnified and enlarged itself, but which was opposed by a goat that had destroyed it. The great horn of the goat was then broken, and four notable ones arose to replace it. So that vision also describes the struggle between the Persian empire and that of the Greeks which followed it, as Alexander died and his empire was divided into four pieces amongst his generals. The little horn of Daniel chapter 8 would in turn arise from amongst one those pieces, meaning from one of the lands over which they had ruled. The interpretation of the ram, the goat and the little horn at the end of that chapter certainly does fit Mohammed and the rise of Islam, however the little horn of Daniel chapter 7 is clearly a different entity, arising from a different place.
Now Clifton proceeds by discussing one of his sources:
Although William Fowler erred in his End Time Revelation, he was quite an accomplished prophecy student. It is regrettable there are not more men of his caliber today! On pages 126-128, he explained the ‘little horn’ in Daniel chapter 7 [as] the fourth (or the Roman) empire, where he stated:
“Daniel had a dream in which he saw four great beasts, the fourth having ten horns among which an eleventh little horn sprang up. In the interpretation we are told that the four beasts represent four kingdoms or empires, and the ten horns are ten kings or kingdoms that arise out of the last empire. None of the empires are named but it is widely assumed that they are the same as the four empires represented by the parts of the metallic image in chapter 2. The four beasts, and the ten horns of the fourth beast serve only to introduce, identify and locate the little horn that forms the main feature of this prophecy. This clearly represents a person of power hostile to the children of Yahveh, for we are told that it ‘made war with the saints’, and would prevail ‘for a time, two times, and a half a time’ (verse 25, R.S.V.). As we have previously shown, this is equivalent to 1,260 prophetic ‘days’, or years, or (360x3) +180 = 1260.
So far there is nothing in Fowler’s interpretations with which we could disagree. The error which Clifton refers to is evidently in the next paragraph concerning the Alemanni. But notice that in both Daniel chapters 2 and 7, the saints of the most high come to world hegemony in place of the beasts which had ruled it previously. In Daniel chapter 2, they themselves have a role in the destruction of those empires, and in Daniel chapter 7, the little horn would make war with them and prevail over them, at least temporarily. So continuing with Clifton’s citation of Fowler:
“To identify the ten horns of the fourth beast, which was the Roman Empire, one has but to examine history which records that ten kingdoms arose after A.D. 476 in the western half of the Roman Empire, while the eastern half continued to flourish. History also reveals that Justinian, at the head of the Eastern (Roman) Empire at Constantinople subdued three of the ten kingdoms which were established in the western half of the Roman Empire after the fall of Imperial Rome. These were the Vandals, whose kingdom had been established in north Africa, the Ostrogoths, who had established a kingdom in Italy, and the Alemanian kingdom north of Italy. ‘And he shall be diverse from the first, and shall subdue three kings’, (verse 24). Justinian, as head of the civil government, united the interest of the church and established the Temporal Power of the Papacy which clearly fulfilled the prophetic little horn by dominating Europe for 1,260 years until curtailed by Napoleon, (538 A.D. to 1,798 A.D.).
Now Clifton adds a parenthetical note:
[10-toed provinces = 10 horns. Correction: The three kingdoms = Italy, Africa, Spain, but not the Alemanni. C.A.E.]
Of course, this note reflects a diverse opinion from that of Fowler, but Fowler certainly did err concerning the Alemanni. As for Roman provinces, there were ten Roman senatorial provinces at the time of Christ, which were the core of the Empire and their governors were chosen by the Senate, and the number of all the other provinces, which were imperial provinces governed by the emperor, was greater but it had varied throughout the course of the empire. So we may count the ten toes as the Senatorial provinces, excluding Italy itself which was governed directly by the Senate. While the ten toes of Daniel chapter 2 seem to indicate these ten provinces which were the core of the Empire, the ten horns of Daniel chapter 7 seem to indicate ten kingdoms which resulted from the fracture of the toes, but Clifton wanted to equate them.
In 530 AD Gelimer, who would be the last king of the Vandals and Alans in Africa, had deposed his own cousin, Hilderic, from the throne. But the Byzantines were allied with Hilderic, and in response to Gelimer’s actions they invaded Africa near Carthage in 533. Gelimer did not have any alliance with the Goths as he was defeated in two subsequent battles, and taking flight, he was compelled to surrender the following year. Then in the years 535-553 AD the Byzantines invaded Italy through Dalmatia and defeated the Gothic kings Vitiges, and then Totila, in Italy. So they were able to reestablish Dalmatia, Italy and Roman Africa for the Empire.
We must agree with Clifton, that the Byzantines did not conquer the Alemanni at this time. Rather, as they were still waging war against the Goths in Italy 553 or 554 AD, they were forced to defend themselves against Franks and Alemanni who had invaded Italy from the north. The Byzantines repelled them successfully, but they did not subdue or rule over them.
Finally, in 550 AD there was a revolt among the citizens of Cordoba against Agila I, the king of the Visigoths in Spain, and Agila was defeated. Another Gothic nobleman, Athanagild, rose up and took Seville, announcing for himself to be king in opposition to Agila. After a struggle, the Byzantines became involved and invaded Spain in 555 AD. Upon their success in taking coastal cities, although the inhabitants of some of those cities remained loyal to the Goths, supporters of Agila had turned and killed him, and therefore Athanagild became the unchallenged king of the Visigoths in Spain. The Byzantines, however, were only able to hold onto their possessions in Spain for another 70 years, while never being able to fully restore it to Rome.
In any event, we can count three kings, or three thrones, which had ruled over toes of the former Roman empire that were uprooted by the Byzantines under Justinian: that of Gelimer in Africa, that of Vitiges and his successor Totilla in Italy, and that of Agila in Spain. We certainly agree with Fowler, that Justinian was indeed the “little horn” of Daniel chapter 7, and is not only identified by the military conquests which were achieved by his generals, but also by the civic accomplishments which he had while in office, that are now explained as Clifton returns to his citation of Fowler, which begins by quoting Daniel 7:25:
“‘And he shall speak great words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and think to change times and laws” (verse 25). Justinian’s best known work was as a codifier and legislator. He greatly stimulated legal studies, and set up a commission under Tribonian which issued the codex, the digest, and the institutes. (Originally introduced in Dec. 534 A.D., and completed in 538 A.D.) The second edition of the codex contained Justinian’s own laws, known as the Novels (Novellae Constitutions). One need only read the utterance of Pope Innocent III in the thirteenth century and his immediate successors to recognize the fulfillment of speaking ‘great words against the Most High.’ Study the history of the inquisition with its massacres, martyrdoms and every kind of persecution to substantiate this interpretation. (See Halley’s Bible Handbook, chapter on Church History, pp. 757-804).
While Justinian’s Novels were new, which is why they were called Novels in the first place, they nevertheless had the full force and effect of law throughout the Empire. So what follows is from a portion of our commentary on John chapter 2 given here in September of 2018:
From Chapter I. Concerning four holy councils:
“Therefore We order that the sacred, ecclesiastical rules which were adopted and confirmed by the four Holy Councils, that is to say, that of the three hundred and eighteen bishops held at Nicaea, that of the one hundred and fifty bishops held at Constantinople, the first one of Ephesus, where Nestorius was condemned, and the one assembled at Chalcedon, where Eutyches and Nestorius were anathematized, shall be considered as laws. We accept the dogmas of these four Councils as sacred writings, and observe their rules as legally effective.”
Here we must add, that once the State mandates the religious beliefs of the people, Church and State become one and the same, as the Empire and the Roman Catholic Church had become under Justinian.
Now we must note, that evidently, in order to get the churches across the empire to universally accept the rules adopted by the various church councils, here Justinian was compelled to enact a law. In the early “Church Fathers” it is found that there was no such compulsion for any universal agreement of doctrine among the various churches. Reading further:
From Chapter II, Concerning the precedence of patriarchs:
“Hence, in accordance with the provisions of these Councils, We order that the Most Holy Pope of ancient Rome shall hold the first rank of all the Pontiffs, but the Most Blessed Archbishop of Constantinople, or New Rome, shall occupy the second place after the Holy Apostolic See of ancient Rome, which shall take precedence over all other sees.”
There is no “precedence of patriarchs” in Scripture. As Christ Himself had said, as it is recorded in Matthew chapter 23, “8 But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. 9 And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. 10 Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.” If it were the will of Christ or of the original apostles for the bishop of Rome to have authority over the entire Christian world, then it would not have been necessary for the emperor to introduce a law five hundred years after the Resurrection of Christ in order to establish and enforce that authority. So it becomes evident, that the second Roman beast, which is described in Revelation chapter 13 as having come out of the wounded head of the first Roman beast, the empire, was established in the laws of Justinian, who had created the power of the papacy, and it is also once again evident that Justinian and the beast which he created is indeed the little horn of Daniel chapter 7.
In that manner, Clifton continues his citation of Fowler:
“If our understanding of the identity of the little horn is correct, then it follows that the Papacy is represented in verse 26: ‘they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end’ (verse 26). The process is still continuing, and will only be completed by our Lord at His coming, when the kingdom ‘shall be given to the people of the saints (Israel, white race) of the Most High’ (verse 27). This is reiterated in Rev. 19:20 when the false prophet (who is the head of the false ecclesiastical system), known today as the ‘Ecumenical movement’, probable heir of (Roman Catholicism) is defeated by Christ at His return, and cast into the ‘lake of fire’.”
As this is being presented, media agencies throughout the world have been announcing that the current pope has just recently expressed support for so-called “civil unions” for cohabiting sodomites. Ever since the first popes ascended to power after the decree of Justinian, the popes have been changing “times and laws”, as we read in Daniel 7:25 just as Justinian himself had done, in order to suit the whims of the empire. Now Clifton responds to his citation of Fowler:
I would state this: those who do not have a comprehension of this subject, as explained here by William V. Fowler, should withhold any opinion on the topic until they come to a proper understanding on the matter! If one has no knowledge concerning Justinian, and how he fits Daniel’s prophecy, one should simply keep quiet for fear of the shame that comes by exposing their wretched illiteracy! I would remind the reader, there was a time when I was woefully ignorant of these things, and I’m now ashamed of my former unscholarly opinions!
Putting Daniel side-by-side with the Revelation and with Roman and medieval history, the truths of these interpretations are fully ascertained even if there are some minor details of which various interpretations may still be debated. Yet few denominational Christians have not even realized the need for such an undertaking, never mind actually venturing to make such an endeavor. They would prefer to interpret prophecy according to their peculiar sectarian doctrines, rather than according to history. So now Clifton discusses what they have done here in this chapter of Daniel:
The Biblical passage that nearly everyone takes out-of-context is Daniel 7:24-25, which we will read at this time:
“24 And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. 25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.”
Clifton now responds to the passage:
This is one of the key passages “futurists” use to prove a future so-called Antichrist and a three and one half year period of tribulation, along with the so-called mark of the beast. If our people understood history, they wouldn’t be falling for such nonsense. All that futurist bunk was dreamed up by a Spanish Jesuit by the name of Ribera about 1580 A.D., and no one before that time ever heard of such a doctrine.
The important thing to notice with this passage is that we are looking for a king of a kingdom who subdued three other kingdoms of our people during his reign. You will also notice we are looking for a king who, during his reign, had a very strong impact upon writing and managing laws. You will notice Justinian fits both of these qualifications. As we go along, the picture of the fulfillment of this passage will start to come into focus.
Not only did Justinian subdue three kingdoms which emerged in the toes of the old Roman empire, but he also fulfills the role of being the eleventh king of his kingdom. The Western and Eastern, or Byzantine, portions of the old Roman empire became permanently divided upon the death of Theodosius I in 395 AD. After him was his son Arcadius king over the Eastern portion alone, and he was succeeded by Theodosius II, Pulcheria, Marcian, Leo I, Leo II, Zeno, Basilicus, Anastasius I Dicorus, Justin, and then Justinian. So once we add to that the fact that he was also a notable codifier of laws, Laws which had governed Europe into modern times, the association is absolutely certain. Continuing with Clifton:
I will now quote from The World Book Encyclopedia, volume 11, page 168, to get further insight on this subject:
“JUSTINIAN I, jus TIN ih un (A.D. 482-565), was the Byzantine (East Roman) emperor from A.D. 527 until his death. He collected Roman laws under one code, the Corpus Juris Civilis (Body of Civil Law). This code, also known as the Justinian Code, is the basis of the legal systems in many nations today ... Justinian was called The Great. He recaptured many parts of what had been the West Roman Empire from barbarians. He built fortresses, harbors, monasteries, and the famous church of Saint Sophia in what is now Istanbul, Turkey.
“Justinian was born in a part of Macedonia that is now in Yugoslavia. His uncle, Emperor Justin I, made him co-ruler in 527. Justin died a few months later, and Justinian became sole emperor. During Justinian’s reign, his wife, Theodora, tried to influence his politics ... Justinian was an orthodox Christian, and tried to unify his empire under one Christian faith. He persecuted Christian heretics (those who opposed church teachings), Jews, and pagans (non-Christians). In 529, he closed the schools of philosophy in Athens, Greece, because he felt they taught paganism.
According to the Greek historian Procopius, who was also a member of Justinian’s court, Justinian had come from of the tribe of the Dardanians in Macedonia, which also places him among the descendants of that tribe which founded ancient Troy. Returning to Clifton Emahiser:
“In the early 530’s, Justinian began a series of wars against the Vandals, Ostrogoths, and Visigoths, who had conquered most of the West Roman Empire in the 400’s. By the mid-550’s his armies had taken northern Africa, Italy, and parts of Spain … [And to that I must add Dalmatia - WRF]
“JUSTINIAN CODE. Justinian I, ruler of the eastern Roman Empire from 527 to 565, commanded 10 of the wisest men in his realm to draw up a collection of the Roman laws. This collection is known as the Corpus Juris Civilis, which means Body of Civil Law. Also called the Justinian Code, this body of law is recognized as one of the greatest Roman contributions to civilization. It was a compilation of early Roman laws and legal principles, illustrated by cases, and combined with an explanation of new laws, and future legislation. The code clarified the laws of those times, and has since been a basis for law codes of many countries.
“The scholars who compiled the Justinian Code divided it into four parts. The Institutes served as a textbook in law for students and lawyers. The Digest was a casebook covering many trials and decisions. The Codex was a collection of statutes and principles. The Novels contained proposed new laws.”
Now Clifton responds to the encyclopedia article:
You will notice in both of these quotes, three kingdoms were taken by Justinian. William V. Fowler records them the same as The World Book Encyclopedia, except for the Alemanian which The World Book Encyclopedia calls the Visigoths. The Alemanni and Visigoths are different tribes of the same people, so there is no real problem.
This is not quite correct, as the Alemanni at the time were in Germany and the Visigoths in Spain, but we have already explained this difference among his sources more thoroughly than Clifton has done here. Returning to Justinian, Clifton is about to turn to yet another source and he says:
Justinian was corrupting the church and the state with his law code, so we will not completely understand this passage unless we look further. To see how all of this happened, I will quote from the book, Study in Daniel, by Howard B. Rand, pp. 182 and 183:
“Having discovered the identity of the four beasts; let us now note the meaning of the little horn which Daniel saw arise from among the ten horns on the fourth beast. The ten horns represent subdivisions [or provinces] in the Roman Empire:
“The little horn that arose among the ten, which was diversified from them, pulling up three, is none other than Justinian at the head of the Eastern [Roman] Empire at Constantinople. History reveals that he subdued three of the ten kingdoms which were established in the Roman Empire after the fall of Imperial Rome. These were the Vandals, whose kingdom had been established in north Africa, The Ostrogoths who had established a kingdom in Italy, and the Alemannian Kingdom, north of Italy.
Now Clifton added a parenthetical note which said:
Not true, the 3rd. kingdom was southern Spain.
So Rand and Fowler both made the same error concerning the Alemanni. However Dalmatia was also a former province taken from Rome by the Goths and recovered by the Byzantines in the time of Justinian, and they never recovered more than a very small portion of what was once Roman Spain. Dalmatia was not one of the toes, as it was an Imperial Province, but the horns of Daniel are kings which came out of the fourth empire and not provinces of the empire. In any event, continuing again with Clifton:
In the eyes and the mouth that appear in this little horn we have a new power associated with the rule of the little horn. In fact, this power became the eyes and mouth of the civil and economic activities of the government represented in the little horn. Justinian, as head of the civil government, and the Pope, as the head of the Church, united their interest and Church and State became one. Finally the Pope became the director of both Church and State and ruled as a great politico-ecclesiastical potentate. One needs but read the utterances of past Popes to recognize the fulfillment of speaking ‘great words against the most High’ as prophesied by Daniel.”
Now Clifton reacts to this citation:
Again, I will take you to Watchman’s Teaching Letter # 12 of April, 1999 to show you the connection between Justinian and the popes of the Roman Catholic Church. This is an interesting perception, for the popes gained their state-political authority by Justinian’s Law Code.
“What we are talking about here is an ecclesiastical-political power with the combination of Justinian and the Pope. That is why this new ecclesiastical-political beast is diverse from all the beasts that were before it, Daniel 7:7. I will now quote from Howard B. Rand’s book, Study In Revelation, page 44:
“‘Upon the ruins of the ancient Roman Empire there arose, gradually, a new and different type of Empire, which became all the more powerful because it claimed control over the souls of men as well as their bodies, and extended its dominion beyond this life into the grave. History has amply verified these facts and that the Popes claimed the right to temporal power, taking the place of the Caesars, while the Eternal City under pagan Rome became the Eternal City under Papal control. How apt is the description of her supporter as named by John, Hell. This is Hades or the abode of the dead, for through the doctrine of Purgatory, the church was able to hold supremacy and exercise tremendous power over her followers not only in this life, but beyond through the fear of future suffering in Purgatory.’ [emphasis mine]
While we may not totally agree with some of Rand’s allegories, his remarks were certainly appropriate. While ancient emperors, including the emperors of the Greeks and Romans, often sought to homogenize the religions of their subjects for the sake of peace and government compliance within their respective states, now rather than appealing to some idol in a temple, the pope could claim the authority of the God of Heaven, the one true God of our Bibles, while ruling as a tyrant over God’s people. The little horn would rule over and wear down the “saints of the most high”. Clifton continues to cite his old Watchman’s Teaching Letter, which in turn continues to cite Howard Rand:
“Then quoting on page 49 from this same book: ‘CHURCH OVER STATE: Pope Agapetus, in a dispute with Justinian the Emperor of the East, won his point and the Emperor yielded to the Pope. The head of the Church had triumphed over the head of the government. This was 536 A.D. A Church council assembled at Constantinople this same year and informed the government, as a servant of the Church, that an edict be issued ordering a decision of the council executed. This was done and thus Church and State became united. Persecutions followed, which the Church dictated and the State supported. One thousand two hundred and sixty years of cruel torture and destruction now followed, resulting in nearly a hundred million dying violent deaths’.”
Of course, not all of the popes were so evil, and at the same time the Roman Catholic Church did many things which we may consider to be beneficial to Christian society in Europe. But it never ruled according to the laws of God and the Gospel of Christ, and it never taught true apostolic Christianity. Rather, the Roman Catholic Church, and the portion which became known as the Greek Orthodox Church since the time of the great schism, had always been agents of the empire, and they were formed from a mixture of Christianity with the ancient pagan institutions and philosophies of the empire.
Now Clifton continues by expressing a formula:
538 A.D. TO 1798 A.D. = 1,260 YEARS, NOT 3½ YEARS
Let’s go back to our original Scripture of Daniel 7:24-25 and pick up the sentence concerning this period of time: “... and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.”
That is, the “saints of the most high” would be given into the hand of this little horn for three-and-a-half times. In summary, Clifton is expressing the concept that the beginning of the papacy as we know it was circa 538 AD, and the temporal powers of the pope in Europe had ended with the French Revolution and the time of Napoleon and his actions against the pope circa 1798 AD, a period of 1260 years. So Clifton replies and says:
This sentence is used by futurists as a basis for their postulation of a future three and one half year tribulation period, when a so-called Antichrist will set up his kingdom after a so-called rapture. Some futurists call for a seven year tribulation period. As I told you before, the futurist theory was dreamed up by a Spanish Jesuit priest by the name of Ribera, about 1580 A.D., and the teaching had never been heard of before that time. It has a long and sordid history, and I don’t have space here to go into much detail on the subject. But this portion of Scripture quoted immediately above is one of the basic passages they use, out-of-context, to support their theory. By showing you the true historical meaning of this passage, I hope to drive a nail into the coffin of this doctrine so it will stay dead for a long time. What could be more of a tribulation than 1,260 years and 100,000,000 violent deaths, mostly of our people? Some estimate as low as 60 million, but it is still a lot of people. This is the legacy of Justinian and his law code, along with the Universal Church.
The 30 Years’ War after the time of the Reformation was a significant source of those deaths, where there were perhaps more than 8 million deaths in a war that was primarily instigated by the Jesuit Counter-Reformation and Roman Catholic desires to once again control Germany.
Now Clifton continues under another subtitle:
EXAMPLE OF LACK OF INSIGHT ON DANIEL 7:20-26
Now that we have covered this prophecy of Daniel 7, let’s take a look at some comments from The Bible Knowledge Commentary on this passage found in vol. 1, page 1355. While there are some positive contributions from this source, other positions are faulty, hampering understanding. As I quote an example here, compare it with the evidence:
“The amillenarian [or amillennial - WRF] view that the ‘little horn’ has already appeared sometime in the past (but since Christ’s First Advent) is wrong because: (a) no such ruler has attained worldwide status (7:23), (b) no such ruler has subdued 3 of 10 kings who were ruling at once (v. 24), (c) no such ruler has persecuted Israel (v. 21) for three and one-half years (v. 25), and (d) no such ruler has been destroyed forever (v. 26) by Christ’s return. Nor could this ‘little horn’ be the Roman Catholic papacy because: (a) the ‘little horn’ is a king, not a pope, (b) the papacy’s power has not been limited to three and one-half years, (c) the papacy has not concentrated on persecuting the nation Israel, and (d) the papacy has not been destroyed by the return of Christ to the earth.”
Now Clifton made another parenthetical remark:
This source hasn’t the least idea who true Israel is!
This is the folly of interpreting prophecy through Church doctrine, as Church doctrine is based on Judaized teachings, false premises and false conclusions about Scripture.
The interpretation of the series of kingdoms described in Daniel chapter 2 is concrete, it cannot be honestly interpreted as anything but the succession of Babylon, Persia, Greece and Rome to world hegemony without being twisted into a pretzel, and so it is in Daniel chapter 7. We are told by Daniel himself that these beasts were kingdoms that would succeed one another, and the beasts are described as having features which can indeed be identified with the respective kingdoms with which they should be associated.
Then we are told by Daniel himself that this little horn would be a king that would arise after them who would make war against and prevail over the people of God until the coming of the Ancient of Days. So, interpreting Daniel chapters 2 and 7 together, we must look for a ruling authority that arose out of the head of that last of the four beasts, the Roman empire, and which prevailed over the same people who had caused that empire to fall, as they are described in Daniel chapter 2 as the people of the stone kingdom. Daniel chapters 2 and 7 cannot be independently interpreted in ways that force them to conflict with one another, as if the Word of God is not consistent. Therefore the Saints of the Most High must be another identifier for the people of the Stone Kingdom.
The Roman Catholic Church, having its authority encoded into the laws which came directly from Justinian, and Justinian also having fulfilled other aspects of the description of the little horn in his own lifetime, in that the identification of this authority is revealed in a manner which cannot be plausibly denied, and it also becomes evident that the modern Jews, who still deny Christ and whom Christ had told were not His sheep, they cannot possibly be identified as the Saints of the Most High. If we do not start with our own conclusion and try to force the Word of God to suit our doctrine, then the prophecy itself will lead us to a correct conclusion and we must admit that both the church doctrine and the Jews are all wrong.
Now we will see Clifton’s answer to the errors in these denominational Christian interpretations, but one must understand our Christian Identity profession in order to understand why Clifton is correct:
The answers to these blatantly false statements by The Bible Knowledge Commentary, edited by John F. Walvoord and Roy B. Zuck of the Dallas Seminary Faculty are: YES, the “little horn” of Daniel 7:8 did appear in the past, represented by Justinian, and continued through the Roman Catholic papal system! YES, the “little horn” did attain worldwide status in the prophesied Roman world! YES, Justinian did subdue 3 out of 10 kings! YES, the Roman Catholic papal system did persecute Israelites of Anglo-Saxon and European descent! YES, that prophecy was for a prophetic 3½ years, or 1260 actual years! YES, that papal ruler lost his power in 1798 A.D., and will be totally destroyed at the Second Advent! YES, the papacy represents the “little horn” of Daniel 7:8! YES, the papacy did concentrate on persecuting European, Anglo-Saxon and related “Israelites” during that period! And, YES, while the papacy did lose its ruling power, it will finally be totally destroyed at Messiah’s Second Advent!
It may be argued that if Justinian is the “little horn” of Daniel chapter 7, then how could the papacy be the little horn of Daniel chapter 7? But the answer lies in the fact that the works of a man are credited to the man. Justinian created the laws that ultimately gave the popes of Rome the authority over all of Europe, all of Christendom, and there was no separation of Church and State during that period, as the Church and the nobility were intertwined. Returning again to Clifton, he continues by speaking of his sources, Walvoord and Zuck, whom he has also cited in his writings in other contexts:
While John F. Walvoord and Roy B. Zuck of the Dallas Seminary got some things right on the dynasty of Egyptian pharaohs during the time of Moses, they’re as blind-as-a-bat concerning who the true Israelites of the Bible are! While we should give credit where credit is due, likewise we should give criticism where criticism is due, so here is the other side of the story:
It is important here to know that John F. Walvoord was a student, and later became the president of Dallas Theological Seminary, which was an outgrowth from Scofield’s theology, which was formerly known as the Southwestern School of the Bible. This school is now a major contributor for the spreading of Scofield’s views! This shows that sometimes truth can come from less than competent sources.
There are so many prophecies in the Old Testament which make absolutely no sense, of which the fulfillment can never be realized, if one starts with the conclusion that Jews and Hebrews or Jews and Israelites are one and the same. For this reason, so many heretical ideas about prophecy have been conceived, and none of them can ever get it right because their fundamental principles are all wrong! But we shall continue with Clifton:
An allied school to the Dallas Theological Seminary was the Moody Bible Institute, both strongly supporting the teachings of John Nelson Darby, which has continued to pour fuel on futurism’s growth. Out of this milieu came the (so-called pastor) Hal Lindsey, a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary who released (what was considered a blockbuster book) The Late Great Planet Earth. He designed this volume to be an easy read, and its 177 pages brought the lie of futurism to the American Christian masses, as well as the entire world. Hitting the press, the New York Times labeled it, “The number one bestseller of the decade”, selling over 30 million copies in 30 different languages! By the means of this medium, it spread the lie of futurism, hatched-up by a Jesuit priest 400 years earlier, tightening the grip of Satan’s agenda on the minds of Christians worldwide!
There were early Reformers who understood from Daniel and the Revelation that the papacy certainly was the beast which fulfilled those prophecies, and there is much artwork surviving from that time containing propaganda which depicts that very thing. They confused the beast for the Antichrist, which was an error, but the association of the papacy with the beast entity in these Scriptures is true. So the papacy was forced to produce propaganda of its own in order to counter that of the Reformers, and to deflect from itself the clearly obvious truths in their allegations. Thus Clifton continues:
Note what one Protestant writer had to say over 100 years ago:
“Accordingly, towards the close of the century of the Reformation, two of her most learned doctors set themselves to the task, each endeavouring by different means to accomplish the same end, namely, that of diverting men’s minds from perceiving the fulfilment of the prophecies of the Antichrist in the Papal system. The Jesuit Alcasar devoted himself to bring into prominence the Preterist method of interpretation, which we have already briefly noticed, and thus endeavouring to show that the prophecies of Antichrist were fulfilled before the Popes ever ruled in Rome, and therefore could not apply to the Papacy.
On the other hand, the Jesuit Ribera tried to set aside the application of these prophecies to the Papal Power by bringing out the Futurist system, which asserts that these prophecies refer properly not to the career of the Papacy, but to that of some future supernatural individual, who is yet to appear, and to continue in power for three and a half years. Thus, as Alford says, the Jesuit Ribera, about A.D. 1580, may be regarded as the Founder of the Futurist system in modern times.”
Now Clifton makes another parenthetical note and says:
I cite this subject often in other papers.
Then he concludes:
It should now be evident to the reader that there isn’t any prophetic time left over for a so-called 3½ or 7 calendar year tribulation. Besides, if all of the “saints of the most high” are going to be taken in a “rapture”, how could the antichrist “wear them out”, Dan. 7:25?
And that is another doctrine refuted by Daniel chapters 2 and 7, which insist that the Kingdom of God is already here on earth, but will suffer until the return of the Christ to earth.