The Son of Man Will Come in the Clouds of Heaven
<Dan 7:13-14> “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence.
He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.
If we interpret Daniel’s prophecy concerning the coming of the Son of Man on the cloud as Jesus born in Bethlehem, we can only see the cloud as a symbolic representation of the body. If so, Jesus’ promise of coming to the clouds in the last days must be fulfilled in the flesh, and it must be interpreted as a separate event from Christ, who comes to be judged by fire.
However, the interpretation of Christ as the cloud above as a prophecy of the coming Adviser is no longer the essential basis for seeing the cloud as a symbol of the flesh. And there is no reason to see the coming of the clouds as a separate event with the advent that will appear on fire.
In the above verse, is the one like the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven (Daniel 7:13) a prophecy about Jesus two thousand years ago? Or is it the prophecy of the final Judgment Lord? Knowing which is the correct interpretation is a crucial matter of salvation for Christians living in the last days.
2. Daniel 7 Structural Analysis
Daniel 7 is divided into two parts. The first part (vv. 1-14) is a direct record of the vision Daniel received in a dream, and the second part (vv. 15-28) is an interpretation of the dream that an angel conveys to Daniel.
The direct record of the dream in the first section is divided into two. A description of the four beasts (vv. 3–12) and a description of the restoration of the kingdom of God (vv. 13–14). Thus, the interpretation of dreams is divided into two parts (vv. 15–28). Interpretation and interpretation of the restoration of the kingdom of God.
It should be noted that when an angel briefly explained his dream (vv. 17-18), Daniel was hard to understand. The angel then gave a more detailed interpretation of the dream (vv. 23-27). Thus, the interpretation of the Son of Man in the clouds of heaven appears twice in chapter 7.
The controversial issue then becomes clearer. Whether the prophecy of the restoration of the kingdom of God (Daniel 7: 13-14) was fulfilled in the time of Jesus two thousand years ago or in the last days with the judgment.
The first step in determining which is right is to find out what an angel interpreted in his dream. We can see this in two interpretations of the angel later in Daniel 7. We should not make any other claim without acknowledging the angelic interpretation.
3. Correct interpretation of the dream of Daniel 7
The following verse is the first interpretation of a dream an angel tells Daniel.
<Dan 7:16-18> I approached one of those standing there and asked him the true meaning of all this. “So he told me and gave me the interpretation of these things:
‘The four great beasts are four kingdoms that will rise from the earth.
But the saints of the Most High will receive the kingdom and will possess it forever–yes, for ever and ever.’
The first interpretation of the angel is very short and concise. But even in these short words, we can find enough answers to the questions we want to study. Looking back and forth in the context, it can be seen that the restoration of the kingdom of God will occur in the time after the fulfillment of the four beasts’ prophecies (after the Middle Ages Religion).
However, Daniel seems to have not been able to settle his curiosity on such a brief explanation. Daniel specifically wants to know more about the fourth beast and the restoration of the kingdom of God that will follow.
<Dan 7:19-22> “Then I wanted to know the true meaning of the fourth beast, which was different from all the others and most terrifying, with its iron teeth and bronze claws–the beast that crushed and devoured its victims and trampled underfoot whatever was left. I also wanted to know about the ten horns on its head and about the other horn that came up, before which three of them fell–the horn that looked more imposing than the others and that had eyes and a mouth that spoke boastfully. As I watched, this horn was waging war against the saints and defeating them, until the Ancient of Days came and pronounced judgment in favor of the saints of the Most High, and the time came when they possessed the kingdom.
In the midst of Daniel’s question, the restoration of the kingdom of God emerged as an event that would take place after the dark ages of religion. In other words, we should not think of the Son of Man coming on a cloud as the first coming Jesus to be born in the nation of Israel.
Looking at the angel’s answer to Daniel’s second question, we end up with the same conclusion. The angel first explains the history of the apostasy of the fourth beast in verses 23–25.
<Dan 7:23-25> “He gave me this explanation: ‘The fourth beast is a fourth kingdom that will appear on earth. It will be different from all the other kingdoms and will devour the whole earth, trampling it down and crushing it. The ten horns are ten kings who will come from this kingdom. After them another king will arise, different from the earlier ones; he will subdue three kings. He will speak against the Most High and oppress his saints and try to change the set times and the laws. The saints will be handed over to him for a time, times and half a time.
The angel continues to explain that the Son of Man coming in the clouds to restore the kingdom of God is a prophecy that will take place after the dark religion of the Middle Ages.
<Dan 7:26-27> ” ‘But the court will sit, and his power will be taken away and completely destroyed forever. Then the sovereignty, power and greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven will be handed over to the saints, the people of the Most High. His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, and all rulers will worship and obey him.’
In the above verse, the explanation of the angel began with the words “the judgment began.” Thus it is clear that this is a judgment on the history of apostasy in the dark religions of the Middle Ages. In this passage “ the Son of man coming in the clouds ” (Daniel 7: 13-14) means Christ who will come to the final judgment.
4. The Bible interpretation that the cloud symbolizes the body must be discarded
From the above, it is impossible to interpret a person like the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven(Dan 7:13) as a prophecy of the first coming. Without going too far, the answer is clearly stated twice in the interpretation of the angel in Daniel 7, which contains the prophecy. Therefore, if someone enters into any other Bible passage, we need to know that he is going to come up with a different interpretation.
The logic of interpreting the coming Son of clouds (Daniel 7:13) as the first coming Jesus must be discarded. And another logic that insists that clouds symbolize body must be discarded. Some people claim that Advent Jesus, who is coming in the clouds again, must come in the flesh, because Jesus, who was foretold in the clouds, came in the flesh. But this claim is a lie captured by the spirit of deception. It is a false claim to deify a person and seek personal gain. Many pseudo-groups make similar claims.