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If I Were Told the Future - Lesson 65

The King of the North

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Let’s pray together:


The servant of evil which Your prophetic word describes in the greatest detail is the «king of the North», found in Daniel chapter 11.

Who is this king, and what is his work?

Please enlighten us by Your Holy Spirit, so that we may get precise answers to these questions. In Jesus Christ our Savior and Lord we pray.


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Daniel 10:1,14

In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a thing was revealed to Daniel, whose name was called Belteshazzar.

And the thing was true, but the time appointed was long: and he understood the thing, and had understanding of the vision. (...)

[The Man clothed in linen said,] «Now I am come to make you understand what shall befall your people in the latter days: for yet the vision is for many days.»


At the age of 90, Daniel received his last vision, the last but not the least.

The content of this vision, presented in Daniel chapter 11, was the subject of our lesson «Daniel 11: the Perfect Portrait».

Let’s review its highlights.

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Daniel 11:2

And now will I show you the truth.

Behold, there shall stand up yet three kings in Persia.

And the fourth shall be far richer than they all.


When Daniel received this vision, Babylon had already fallen. So the prophecy begins with the ruling kingdom, that is, the Medo-Persian Empire.

As foretold, three more kings arose after Cyrus II the Great:

- Cambyses II (530 to 522 B.C.);
- the False Smerdis (522 B.C.);
- and Darius I (522 to 486 B.C.).

The fourth king, Xerxes I, also called Ahasuerus, was incredibly rich. He reigned from 486 to 465 B.C.

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Daniel 11:3,4

And a mighty king shall stand up, that shall rule with great dominion, and do according to his will.

And when he shall stand up, his kingdom shall be broken, and shall be divided toward the four winds of heaven.


Then the Medo-Persian Empire fell into the hands of the Greek Empire, led by Alexander the Great.

But, exactly as foretold, his resounding reign was very short. Alexander the Great died at the age of 32, giving way to his four generals:

- Lysimachus;
- Cassander;
- Ptolemy;
- and Seleucus.

Then, verses 5 to 15 describe the wars within the Greek Empire.

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Daniel 11:16,18

But he that comes against him shall do according to his own will, and none shall stand before him.

And he shall stand in the Glorious Land, which by his hand shall be consumed. (...)

After this shall he turn his face to the isles, and shall take many.


The Roman Empire succeeded the kingdom of Greece, and some of its actions are reported in verses 16 to 20.

The prophecy mentions the many conquests of Rome, among which was Palestine («the Glorious Land») and many isles of the north coast of Africa and Asia Minor.

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Daniel 11:21 [NKJV]

And in his place shall arise a vile person, to whom they will not give the honor of royalty.


The Roman Empire gave way to a last power, the subject of the rest of the prophecy, from verse 21 to verse 45.

This power, led by a man called the «king of the North», corresponds to the little horn of Daniel chapters 7 and 8. Therefore, this power is the Papacy.

As foretold, unlike the preceding empires which were all ruled by kings, the Papacy succeeded the Roman Empire without having «the honor of royalty».

But the prophecy is even more precise...

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Daniel 11:21 [NKJV]

He shall come in peaceably, and seize the kingdom by intrigue.


When Emperor Constantine left Rome, in A.D. 330, to establish the new Roman capital, Constantinople (now called Istanbul, in Turkey), the Papacy was left alone in the city of Rome.

To establish its authority over kings, it forged documents, the «False Decretals», among which was the «Donation of Constantine». This document aimed at proving that Constantine had officially bequeathed the city of Rome to Pope Sylvester I.

This is how the Papacy «seized the kingdom by intrigue».

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Daniel 11:22

And with the arms of a flood shall they be overflowed from before him, and shall be broken; yes, also the Prince of the covenant.


Daniel 8:11

Yes, he magnified himself even to the Prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of the sanctuary was cast down.


Claiming to represent God on earth, the Papacy subjected kings and their armies through fear.

It also cast into shadow the work of intercession of Jesus, «the Prince of the covenant», as we have seen in our last lesson.

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Daniel 11:23

And after the league made with him he shall work deceitfully.

For he shall come up, and shall become strong with a small people.


Daniel 8:24

And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power.

And he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practice, and shall destroy the mighty.


Since it didn’t have its own armies, the Papacy made alliances with surrounding nations.

Then it broke these alliances at will, favoring the kings who actively supported it, and deposing the others.

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Daniel 11:24

He shall enter peaceably even on the fattest places of the province.

And he shall do that which his fathers have not done, nor his fathers’ fathers; he shall scatter among them the prey, and spoil, and riches.


Thirsting for more and more power, the Papacy did «that which his fathers have not done, nor his fathers’ fathers». It did not hesitate to put aside Christian values, and commit serious crimes, as never before in the Church.

With the help of kings and their armies, it pillaged rich people and kings who resisted its authority, and it redistributed their riches, greatly favoring its supporters.

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Daniel 11:24,25

He shall forecast his devices against the strong holds, even for a time.

And he shall stir up his power and his courage against the king of the South with a great army.

And the king of the South shall be stirred up to battle with a very great and mighty army.


Then the Papacy wanted to make Jerusalem a place of pilgrimage.

At that time Jerusalem was occupied by Muslims, ruled by caliphs (and then by sultans) established in Egypt («the king of the South»).

To achieve its aim, the Papacy launched seven Crusades, from 1095 to 1250, to conquer the Holy Land.

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Daniel 11:25,26

And the king of the South shall be stirred up to battle with a very great and mighty army; but he shall not stand: for they shall forecast devices against him.

Yes, they that feed of the portion of his meat shall destroy him, and his army shall overflow: and many shall fall down slain.


At the end of the first Crusade, on July 15, 1099, Jerusalem fell into the hands of the Papacy, and the Muslims in the city were slaughtered.

Afterward, in spite of some traitors in the pope’s pay, the Muslisms organized themselves and retaliated during the following Crusades.

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Daniel 11:27

And both of these kings’ hearts shall be to do mischief, and they shall speak lies at one table.

But it shall not prosper: for yet the end shall be at the time appointed.


During the years of the Crusades, many treaties were signed between the Papacy’s armies and the Muslims, but all of them were broken when the opportunity presented itself, by Crusaders more often than not.

Among the greatest treacheries is the Crusaders’ breaking of the peace treaty concluded between Sultan Saladin and Christian leader Gui de Lusignan.

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Daniel 11:28

Then shall [the king of the North] return into his land with great riches.

And his heart shall be against the holy covenant; and he shall do exploits, and return to his own land.


The Crusades allowed the Papacy’s armies to bring back riches from the Orient: sugar, cotton, mirrors, fabrics, etc.

As the Crusades were going on, the Papacy grew to like that type of action, and launched little crusades in Europe, against those it called «heretics», that is, Christians who remained faithful to God, firmly rejecting the pope’s authority.

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Daniel 11:29,30

At the time appointed he shall return, and come toward the south; but it shall not be as the former, or as the latter.

For the ships of Chittim shall come against him: therefore he shall be grieved.


During the seventh and last Crusade launched against the Middle East, devout King Louis IX was taken prisoner, and capitulated in 1250.

The Muslims, who had made an alliance with the Greek naval strength («Chittim» designates generally the maritime mainlands of Greece), finally overcame the Crusaders, and remained the only rulers of Palestine until 1917.

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Daniel 11:30

He shall be grieved, and return, and have indignation against the holy covenant: so shall he do.

He shall even return, and have intelligence with them that forsake the holy covenant.


Frustrated by the failure of the Crusades, the Papacy once more turned its fury against the heretics, but this time with far more severity: this was the beginning of the Inquisition.

Less than two years after the last Crusade, in 1252, Pope Innocent IV allowed the torture of the heretics.

The Inquisition had the support of the apostate kings («them that forsake the holy covenant»), notably the kings of France.

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Daniel 11:31

And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice, and they shall place the abomination that makes desolate.


Daniel 8:12

And a host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground.


Then, in 1343, the Papacy instituted the system of additional works, that is, the works one must perform to be saved, in addition to Jesus’ sacrifice.

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Daniel 11:32,33

And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.

And they that understand among the people shall instruct many.


Making alliances with apostate kings attracted to fame and power, the Papacy carried out a merciless campaign against those Christians who firmly refused to submit to its authority, choosing, instead, to remain loyal to God’s will as stated in the Bible.

At the peril of their lives, these Christians taught the truth to the ignorant population, denouncing the errors and corruption of the Papacy.

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Daniel 11:33

Yet they shall fall by the sword, and by flame, by captivity, and by spoil, many days.


Daniel 7:21,22

The same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them; until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the Most High.


During the 1260 years of the Papacy’s reign, millions of believers paid with their lives for their faithfulness to God.

Fortunately, after «many days», that terrible persecution came to an end.

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Daniel 11:34

Now when they shall fall, they shall be helped with a little help: but many shall join to them with flatteries.


Revelation 12:16

And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth.


The faithful Christians who were persecuted by the Papacy were «helped with a little help» by the Reformation which started in the 16th century.

They were also helped by the discovery of the New World which became a land of refuge and religious liberty.

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Daniel 11:35

And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to purge, and to make them white, even to the time of the end.


Daniel 12:9,10

The words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.

Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried.


The Papacy’s reign finished in 1798, marking the end of the 1260 days (or 3½ times).

However, prophecy indicates that this power will come back in force: its second reign will last «even to the time of the end».

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Daniel 11:36

And the king shall do according to his will.

And he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvelous things against the God of gods.


2 Thessalonians 2:3,4

That Day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sits in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.


The prophet Daniel, with the words «the little horn» and «the king of the North», and the apostle Paul, with the words «the man of sin» and «the son of perdition», describe the Papacy and its arrogance.

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Daniel 11:36

[He] shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished.

For that that is determined shall be done.


Daniel 8:19,25

Behold, I will make you know what shall be in the last end of the indignation: for at the time appointed the end shall be. (...)

He shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many. He shall also stand up against the Prince of princes.

But he shall be broken without hand.


In the last days, the «indignation», that is, «the wine of the wrath of God which is poured out without mixture into the cup of His indignation» (Revelation 14:10), will put an end to the Papacy’s arrogance.

And when He returns, at the pouring out of the seventh vial of God’s wrath, Jesus will put an end to the Papacy’s reign.

We will come back to this subject in a few minutes.

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Daniel 11:37,38

Neither shall [the king of the North] regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all.

But in his estate shall he honor the God of forces: and a god whom his fathers knew not shall he honor with gold, and silver, and with precious stones, and pleasant things.


Casting a shadow over Jesus’ work of intercession, the Papacy decided to offer a very rich and sumptuous worship to the Virgin Mary, «a god whom his fathers knew not».

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Daniel 11:39

Thus shall he do in the most strong holds with a strange god, whom he shall acknowledge and increase with glory.

And he shall cause them to rule over many, and shall divide the land for gain.


The Papacy strengthened the worship of the Virgin Mary by adopting two great dogmas:

- first, the Immaculate Conception, maintaining that Mary was conceived and was born free from the original sin;

- then, the Assumption, maintaining that Mary was caught up to heaven.

And still today, the Papacy has a higher regard for the nations which support the worship of Mary.

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Daniel 11:40

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.


Revelation 13:3

I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed.

And all the world wondered after the beast.


After the temporary interruption of its reign in 1798, the Papacy was healed of its «deadly wound» in 1929, by the Lateran Treaty.

«At the time of the end», it is active once again, and attacks «the king of the South».

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Daniel 11:40

At the time of the end shall the king of the South push at him.


Exodus 5:2

Pharaoh said,

«Who is the Lord, that I should obey His voice to let Israel go? I know not the Lord, neither will I let Israel go.»


Daniel chapter 11 ends with the Papacy’s work «at the time of the end», and especially since it became a political power again, in 1929.

Its enemy, «the king of the South», no longer symbolizes Egypt, but a power which recalls Egypt, among other things by its rejection of God.

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Isaiah 31:1

Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong!

But they look not to the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the Lord.


The enemy of the Papacy at the time of the end, symbolized by the king of the South, calls to mind Egypt because of its rejection of God, and its confidence in its military strength.

This power is Communism, which was adopted by Russia in 1917, and by China in 1921, that is, shortly before the Papacy was healed of its «deadly wound» in 1929.

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Daniel 11:40

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.


As foretold, the Papacy struggled fiercely against Communism.

The efforts and influence of Pope John Paul II led to the fall of the Berlin Wall, much to everyone’s surprise, in November 1989.

Communism then took a very severe blow, from which it will never recover.

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Daniel 11:41

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.


By saying that the king of the North will attack the inhabitants of «the Glorious Land», the prophecy indicates that the Papacy will once again attack God’s faithful believers.

Future lessons will show us how this will take place.

But what is the meaning of the fact that «Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon» are saved from the hands of the Papacy?

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Jeremiah 40:11,12

When all the Jews that were in Moab, and among the Ammonites, and in Edom, and that were in all the countries, heard that the king of Babylon had left a remnant of Judah, (...) even all the Jews returned out of all places where they were driven, and came to the land of Judah, to Gedaliah, to Mizpah, and gathered wine and summer fruits very much.


When Babylon invaded Judah and took its inhabitants prisoner, it left behind a remnant.

Then, leaving the pagan nations of Moab, Ammon, and Edom, many Jews joined this remnant of Judah, and gathered a great harvest.

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Zechariah 2:6,7,11

«Ho, ho, come forth, and flee from the land of the North,» said the Lord: «for I have spread you abroad as the four winds of the heaven,» said the Lord.

«Deliver yourself, O Zion, that dwell with the daughter of Babylon. (...)

Many nations shall be joined to the Lord in that day, and shall be My people.»


Likewise, in the last days, people from «Edom, Moab, and Ammon» will escape from the hands of Babylon, «the land of the North», because they will respond to God’s call, and join the faithful remnant proclaiming God’s last message before the return of Jesus Christ.

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Daniel 11:42,43

He shall stretch forth his hand also on the countries: and the land of Egypt shall not escape.

But he shall have power over the treasures of gold and of silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt: and the Libyans and the Ethiopians shall be at his steps.


Revelation 13:3

And all the world wondered after the beast.


As people from «Edom, Moab, and Ammon» join the faithful remnant, all the other inhabitants of the world will choose instead to follow the Papacy.

This worldwide seduction is already perceptible.

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Daniel 11:44

But tidings out of the east and out of the north shall trouble him.

Therefore he shall go forth with great fury to destroy, and utterly to make away many.


Revelation 16:12,15

And the sixth angel poured out his vial on the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared. (...)

«Behold, I come as a thief.»


And as we have seen in the lesson «The King Coming from the East», the «tidings out of the east», troubling the Papacy, are the announcement of the coming of Jesus, the King from the East, bringing about the fall of Babylon.

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Daniel 11:44,45

He shall go forth with great fury to destroy, and utterly to make away many.

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 8:25

[He] shall destroy many.

He shall also stand up against the Prince of princes.

But he shall be broken without hand.


As we can see, the parallel between these two prophecies from the book of Daniel is perfect.

When the Papacy tries, for a last time, to annihilate God’s faithful people, Jesus Christ will return and destroy this apostate system.

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Daniel 12 presents a happy conclusion to the prophecy of Daniel 11

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Let’s pray together:

Our Lord,

The prophecy of Daniel 11 amazes us greatly by its astonishing accuracy.

Through the power of Your Holy Spirit and Your inspired Word, please help us to properly prepare ourselves for the time of the end, so that, in spite of the difficulties which await us, we may remain faithful to You until the return of Your Son Jesus Christ.

In His precious name we pray.


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