DANIEL : CHAPTER 11 - SOME CHALLENGING PASSAGES TO INTERPRET
by Dave Smith, D.Min.
Q. #1 - V. 37 speaks of "the gods of his fathers". Will the antichrist be a Jew ? NO
Q. #2 - In Dan. 11:37 is "the desire of women" referring to some sort of physical attraction? NO
Q. #3 - In Dan. 11:37 does "show" appear in the Hebrew text? NO
Q. #4 - In Dan. 11:38 is "a god of fortresses" some other deity? NO
#1. Some Christians say "the gods of his fathers" means antichrist will be a Jew. This would contradict Dan. 7:8, 24; Dan. 9:26. He will be the final ruler in the revived Roman Empire, a Gentile - Dan. 2 & 7. He will be the little horn of the 4th beast. The "people of the prince" were Gentiles - Romans who destroyed the temple in 70 A.D. Also, "his fathers" refers to any religious heritage/ancestry in the context. After all, he will set himself up as a god!
#2. Here the Hebrew is a help. Dr. Pentecost, Dr. Strauss, Dr. Walvoord & many more prophecy scholars say it helps to look at Gen. 3:15 & Isa. 7:14 as well. Keep in mind Daniel's Jewish background. "Women" in Hebrew here is the same as the subjective genitive in Greek. [ And I know this may be Greek to some of you : ) ]. Simply stated it is translated "desire by women". This phrase is a Hebrew construct. The correct translation is " he will have disregard for the desire by women ( or belonging to women )". The Hebrew is " hemdat nashim". ( hemdat is desire, nashim is women ).
This construct form means one noun governs & is in combination with another noun. "Desire" is the first noun here. By Hb. grammar the first noun governs the second & does not take the definite article, but the second noun may take the def. article. So, in the context, it seems to fit that the desire of any Jewish woman would be to give birth to Messiah & the Antichrist has no regard therefore for the Messianic hope of women.
#3. "show no regard" - "show" is Not in the Hebrew text. The correct literal translation is " he shall have no regard." The Hebrew word is "yabin" which can also mean " discern, understand". It is the qal stem, imperfect aspect. The qal imperf. is translated as a future tense. ( The qal perf. is translated as a past tense. )
#4. This is a Hebraic figure of speech referring to antichrist's military might - he sets himself up as an evil warrior type of god. He honors and promotes military might which is like a god to him. There are no other deities other than "man made" ones!! The phrase "his fathers" would be his ancestors. In v. 39 "a foreign god" most likely refers to Satan who empowers the antichrist. This god is foreign in the sense that he gave no such power to other human rulers as he does to this ruler.