Spiritual Forces in High Places

God is supreme over all spiritual forces.

Daniel the profit, a captive Jew in Babylon, lived past 85 years of age and outlasted the Babylonian empire. The Medio-Persian empire had absorbed the Babylonian empire, and Daniel remained an influential presence in the Kings Court. Both his own people, the Jews, and the Gentiles among whom he lived, were awed by his dreams, visions, and encounters with angelic visitors. This lesson is about a vision Daniel had late in his life, that revealed the spiritual conflict between spiritual creatures unseen by us in the supernatural realm. This vision was disclosed to Daniel in answer to a lengthy prayer of his concerning the future of the Jews.

GOLDEN TEXT: Daniel 10:14  Now I am come to make thee understand what shall befall thy people in the latter days: for yet the vision is for many days.


A. Daniel’s Fasting and praying

Daniel 10:1  In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a thing was revealed unto Daniel, whose name was called Belteshazzar (may he {the god} protect and preserve life); and the thing was true, but the time appointed was long: and he understood the thing, and had understanding of the vision.

…….This vision that Daniel had received was the destruction of Israel after being released from the captivity that started with the Babylonians. Daniel was so troubled about what was to come to his people that he began fasting and praying to the Lord on behalf of his people.

10:2  In those days I Daniel was mourning three full weeks. (21 days)

10:3  I ate no pleasant bread, neither came flesh nor wine in my mouth, neither did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled.

10:4  And in the four and twentieth day of the first month, as I was by the side of the great river, which is Hiddekel;

…….Though in Babylonian captivity, Daniel’s s God-given wisdom and discretion helped him to adapt to political changes over the passing decades of his life in Babylon, as inferred at the end of verse one. Daniel received this vision in the third year of the reign of the Persian king Cyrus, which would have been 534 BC. Two years before this, Judas captivity in Babylon had ended, and tens of thousands of Jews had returned from Babylon to Jerusalem and Judah. Jerusalem was occupied by Jews, the rebuilding of the temple had begun, and the revived Jewish nation in Judah was at peace. Nevertheless, Daniel was concerned about the troubles the post-captivity Jews would face before the coming of the Messiah (Daniel, chapter 9). He was so concerned about this, he fasted and prayed for an answer from God about his concerns. God’s answer came on the 24th day of Nisan, the first month of the Jewish religious year, March-April for us. Daniel was beside the river Hiddekel (the Tigris River) when he received his answer from the Lord, in a vision disclosed to him. At the time, he was accompanied by other men, but before the vision began, such a terror fell on them, they ran away and hid themselves, and Daniel was left alone. So, only Daniel, left alone, saw the vision told in this chapter.

B. An Angel Appeared to Daniel

10:5  Then I lifted up mine eyes, and looked, and behold a certain man clothed in linen, whose loins were girded with fine gold of Uphaz:

10:6  His body also was like the beryl, and his face as the appearance of lightning, and his eyes as lamps of fire, and his arms and his feet like in colour to polished brass, and the voice of his words like the voice of a multitude.

…….Daniel is on his last day of the fast, and the Lord deploys the angel to appear before Daniel. The description of the angel was that of any being that has been in the presence of God. Just as Moses when he came down out of the mountain, he had to cover up his face because the people could not look at him because of the brightness.

10:7  And I Daniel alone saw the vision: for the men that were with me saw not the vision; but a great quaking fell upon them, so that they fled to hide themselves.

10:8  Therefore I was left alone, and saw this great vision, and there remained no strength in me: for my comeliness (beauty, excellence) was turned in me into corruption, and I retained no strength.

…….Though Daniel had been in fasting and prayer for so long, his righteousness compared to the presence of the angel was turned into filth and wickedness. That’s what fasting does, it shows us where we stand without the Lord. Not only does fasting tap into the spiritual much deeper, but it shows us how filthy our flesh still is. When we no longer draw our strength from worldly essentials and passions, we seek the Lord in a closer and more serious desperation. In Daniel’s case, it was an angel of upmost regard who came to Daniel in the midst of his seeking the Lord.


A. Daniel’s Reaction to the Angel

10:9  Yet heard I the voice of his words: and when I heard the voice of his words, then was I in a deep sleep on my face, and my face toward the ground.

…….The scripture doesn’t tell us how long Daniel was asleep, but I would think the angel either miraculously provided the rest for him, or stayed by his side protecting him until his needed rest was accomplished.

10:10  And, behold, an hand touched me, which set me upon my knees and upon the palms of my hands.

…….At some time after he fell to the ground asleep, the angel touched him and directed him to his hands and knees. Notice the angel didn’t do all the work for him, he simply strengthened him.

B. An Assuring Message Received

10:11  And he said unto me, O Daniel, a man greatly beloved, understand the words that I speak unto thee, and stand upright: for unto thee am I now sent. And when he had spoken this word unto me, I stood trembling.

…….This is the way the Lord at often times strengthens us. He instills the strength in us, but commands us to put the strength to use. That’s how ministry works in receiving and giving. He empowers us to walk, but directs for us to take the steps.

10:12  Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words.

…….This is such a wonderful example of how the Lord inclines to His children while we pray. Just as Daniel, there was no immediate confirmation that his prayers were being answered or even heard, but the Lord was focused on him from the very beginning (from the first day). Though Daniel was in distress, he knew how to get the attention of the Lord. In this case, one vision caused Daniel to seek for a more direct answer, and it was provided with a heavenly encounter!


A. An Explanation and Revelation Given

10:13  (This is the angel speaking) But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia.

…….Just as there are angels of the Lord continuously looking after Gods children, there are also evil angels like the “prince of Persia” who influence those who do not serve the Lord. It is so important to remember where and what is causing evil influence in others lives. Not only is it important to remember who is causing so much evil in the world, is is even more important to focus on who it is that keeps us safe. Romans 8:26  Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Romans 8:34 It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Ephesians 6:10  Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. 6:11  Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 6:12  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places…….If our focus is more concerned with what may be out to hinder us, we limit the protection of the Lord by our lack of faith. We must step out and take spiritual action, knowing the Lord is always fighting for us, and He has never lost a battle!

Daniel 10:14  Now I am come to make thee understand what shall befall thy people in the latter days: for yet the vision is for many days.

10:15  And when he had spoken such words unto me, I set my face toward the ground, and I became dumb.

10:16  And, behold, one like the similitude of the sons of men touched my lips: then I opened my mouth, and spake, and said unto him that stood before me, O my lord, by the vision my sorrows are turned upon me, and I have retained no strength.

10:17  For how can the servant of this my lord talk with this my lord? for as for me, straightway there remained no strength in me, neither is there breath left in me.

B. Daniel Divinely Strengthened

10:18  Then there came again and touched me one like the appearance of a man, and he strengthened me,

10:19  And said, O man greatly beloved, fear not: peace be unto thee, be strong, yea, be strong. And when he had spoken unto me, I was strengthened, and said, Let my lord speak; for thou hast strengthened me.

10:20  Then said he, Knowest thou wherefore I come unto thee? and now will I return to fight with the prince of Persia: and when I am gone forth, lo, the prince of Grecia shall come.

10:21  But I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth: and there is none that holdeth with me in these things, but Michael your prince.

…….We can see the ongoing conflict between good and evil in events and personalities visible to us every day. We also know there is ongoing conflict between good and evil in the supernatural realm. And, as believers in Christ, we know we are engaged in spiritual warfare against the forces of evil. With all of this in mind, the good news is, God, Christ, and the church will be victorious over this evil world. God has revealed in the holy scripture this conclusion to world history, and we must be encouraged and strengthened by this truth every day.

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