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John Reece
10-22-2014, 01:05 PM
1. Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7 (London: SPKC, 1979), by Maurice Casey
2. The Son of Man Debate: A History and Evaluation (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), by Delbert Burkitt
3. The Solution to the 'Son of Man' Problem (London: T. & T. Clark, 2007), By Maurice Casey
4. The Expression 'Son of Man' and the Development of Christology: A History of Interpretation (London: Equinox Publishing, 2008), by Mogens Müller
5. 'Who Is This Son of Man?': The Latest Scholarship on a Puzzling Expression of the Historical Jesus (London: Bloomsbury T. & T. Clark, 2011), Edited by Larry W. Hurtado and Paul L. Owen

The first book on the list ― Casey's revised and rewritten doctoral thesis supervised by C. K. Barrett at the University of Durham, accepted in 1977 ― is now and forever out of print, with several scarce used copies selling for as much as $400 at Amazon. I say 'forever out of print' because the third book on the list is an updated version of the first, which makes the same case as the first: that is, it purports to be a presentation of "the solution to the 'Son of Man' problem". In fact, the final paragraph/sentence on the front inside dust jacket of the first book (the 1979 publication of Casey's thesis) says, "The book concludes by proposing a complete solution of the Son of Man problem", which = the title of the third book (Casey's last major publication after nearly three decades of debating 'Son of Man' studies with fellow scholars).

In this thread I propose to post excerpts from Casey's out-of-print first book. Any and all comments will be welcome during the process.

NB: Please note that I do not endorse Casey's thesis; rather, I propose to post it simply as information to stimulate thought and discussion. Anyone who is seriously interested in rebuttals to Casey's thesis will find such in the fifth book on the list presented above (i.e., the one edited by Casey critics and interlocutors Larry Hurtado and Paul Owen).

John Reece
10-23-2014, 08:26 AM
SON OF MAN

The interpretation and influence of Daniel 7

MAURICE CASEY

LONDON
SPCK
1979

Preface

This book is a completely revised and rewritten version of a thesis accepted for the degree Ph.D. at the University of Durham in 1977. I would like to thank all those many people who have helped me to produce it. I would particularly like to mention Professor C. K. Barrett, who supervised the research with a very rare combination of real help with the ability to leave my mind independent ....

John Reece
10-24-2014, 10:28 AM
Introduction

The origin and meaning of the Gospel term 'Son of man' is a central problem for research into the Gospel traditions of the teaching of Jesus. None of the proposed solutions has won general acceptance. According to one widespread theory, the use of the term 'Son of man' in the Gospels is derived ultimately from Daniel 7.13, where Daniel saw 'one like a Son of man coming with the clouds of heaven'. In recent years this theory has taken a significant new turn, with the suggestion that it is written in Daniel 7 that the Son of man should suffer. If this theory had been right, it would have been of the utmost importance for our understanding of Jesus himself and for the interpretation of a fundamental group of Gospel sayings. Moreover, the failure of investigations of the Aramaic term בר אנשׁ, and of 'man' concepts in the ancient Near East, to lead to a satisfactory solution of the Son of man problem made it all the more imperative that a thorough investigation of the interpretation of Daniel 7 and the Son of man problem should be carried out. This book is the result.

To be continued...

John Reece
10-25-2014, 12:38 PM
Continuation of Maurice Casey's Introduction to Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7:


For this purpose (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=111284&viewfull=1#post111284) I collected and analyzed evidence of ancient interpretation of Daniel 7, for it was evident from current scholarship that our knowledge of this was insufficient. The whole chapter was taken as a unit, to provide a complete context for the interpretation of the central verses 13 and 14. There were three general questions for this research to answer. How was Daniel 7 interpreted in the ancient world, especially in the time of Jesus and the Gospel writers? How much was it used in the very earliest period of Christianity? Thirdly, and most important of the three, what was the connection between its interpretation and use and the Son of man problem, both in Judaism and Christianity?

To be continued...

John Reece
10-26-2014, 09:46 AM
Continuation of Maurice Casey's Introduction to Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7:


The first of these questions (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=111573&viewfull=1#post111573) required the survey of a considerable quantity of material. All published Jewish apocrypha and pseudepigrapha which might date from approximately the period of Christian origins were read, a procedure which showed that earlier scholars had found every single reference to Daniel 7 in this literature. Rabbinical literature was also surveyed. It was not possible to study only early sayings, because existing methods were not adequate for dating individual sayings which use Daniel 7. The whole rabbinical period was therefore covered, though the investigation was limited to published works, and the material was not read again; the investigation proceeded by means of collecting references from existing indexes and from previous scholarship. Some use was also made of medieval Jewish commentators, who occasionally preserved some very early interpretive material.

To be continued...

John Reece
10-27-2014, 12:49 PM
Continuation of Maurice Casey's Introduction to Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7:


For patristic evidence, all documents down to Eusebius were surveyed, and the Western Church's interpretation was filled out by reading the commentaries of Jerome and Theodoret. This was not however sufficient for the recovery of the author's original interpretation of Daniel 7, and for this purpose published commentaries and similar works from the Syriac-speaking Church were read, down to the end of the first millennium.

To be continued...

John Reece
10-28-2014, 10:02 AM
Continuation of Maurice Casey's Introduction to Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7:


Thus the limits of the investigation were set at points which enabled me to lay down the lines of the different traditions of interpretation of Daniel 7 in the ancient world, as well as to assess the nature and extent of its use in the most important period. The results have dictated the order in which the evidence is discussed in this book. In chapter 2 I have surveyed the evidence of Daniel 7 itself, to set out the way in which it was interpreted by its author, and hence to lay down a terminus a quo for his views. In chapter 3 I have dealt with the evidence of the Syrian Church, for it is here that there is most evidence of the author's original interpretation of the chapter, by means of which it can be shown that this interpretation was known in the time of Jesus. In chapter 4 I have dealt with the mass of evidence for the other interpretive tradition, held in the West by both Jews and Christians. The results discussed in these chapters are then utilized in the interpretation of evidence from the most important period. In chapter 5 the early Jewish evidence is surveyed, and chapters 6 and 7 discuss the book of Revelation and the New Testament epistles. The results of this research can then be used for the main attack on the Son of man problem in chapter 8. Here I have endeavoured to solve all the outstanding problems concerned with the interpretation and use of Daniel 7 by Jesus himself, the earliest Church, and the Gospel writers. This has led me to propose a partial solution to the Son of man problem, and I have tried to demonstrate that, as far as it goes, it is right. However, a partial solution is not enough, especially since failure to find the real origin of the Gospel term 'Son of man' has always been a major factor in the persistent attempts to extract it from Daniel 7, so in chapter 9 I have completed the theory and proposed a complete solution to the Son of man problem. The significance of this for current christological debate will be evident.

To be continued...

John Reece
10-29-2014, 09:30 AM
Continuation of Maurice Casey's Introduction to Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7:


The whole investigation had to contend with two serious problems of method. The first concerns the dating of the exegetical traditions. I have used evidence which must be dated after, and sometimes long after, the time of Jesus. The reason for doing this is obvious enough: earlier material required for answering the necessary questions has long since disappeared. This observation does not remove the problem. For this investigation, however, analysis of the evidence can in large measure provide the necessary substitute for early date. The techniques proposed here are not new. They are the normal techniques of modern historical research. The gap in time thus spanned is great, but not unique in historical work on the ancient world. What is less common is the application of these techniques to enable us to tap the resources of late Jewish and patristic exegetical works, and apply the results to Christian origins.

To be continued...

John Reece
10-30-2014, 11:20 AM
Continuation of Maurice Casey's Introduction to Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7:


The second serious problem of method concerns the definition of 'literary dependence'. What criteria should be used in deciding when an author is dependent on Daniel 7? The answer to this question is difficult, but for this investigation we can get somewhere by drawing two lines which can be precisely drawn. When an author cites and quotes Daniel 7, he must be said to have had it in his mind. When an author's remarks have no verbal connection to Daniel 7 and have no contact with it in thought, it may be safely assumed that he did not have it in mind. These definitions may look so simple and obvious as to be otiose. However, the scope of this investigation was extended more than once to cover works which are explicitly commentaries on Daniel. One reason for their usefulness is that they fall on the easy side of the first of these lines―there is no reason for doubt that their author's have the Danielic text in mind.

To be continued...

John Reece
10-31-2014, 02:10 PM
Continuation of Maurice Casey's Introduction to Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7:


It is the area between these two lines (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=113770&viewfull=1#post113770) which is difficult. For almost the whole of this investigation, I was concerned with conscious literary dependence, that is, dependence of which an author was aware and which is such that the author could, if he had so desired, have given an account of his interpretation of the Old Testament passage on which he was dependent. It is not a consequence of this definition that the account which an author could have given of his interpretation of an Old Testament passage should be consistent or should not be atomistic; only that he should have had an interpretation of which he could have given an account. By contrast I have made no attempt to uncover possible echoes of Daniel 7 which might be attributed to the subconscious mind of an author who knew the chapter very well, because the hypotheses that such an echo is present in a given verse is of no use, partly because it cannot be tested and partly because the workings of the subconscious mind are sufficiently devious to render any deduction that might be made from the presence of a supposed reminiscence of this type to an author's interpretation of the Old Testament passage in question dubious in the extreme. This definition does not of course exclude the possibility that an author did know Daniel 7 as well as this; it assumes only that in order to reach the conclusion that he did have such knowledge we must have more straightforward evidence that he knew it. I have diverged from this procedure only in chapter 8, where I have found criteria on the basis of which it was possible to conclude that in some cases there has been dependence on Daniel 7:13 at an earlier stage in the development of the synoptic tradition, but that the actual Gospel writers cannot be shown to have been aware of this dependence. This is the only section of the material where conclusions of this kind could be usefully sought and established. Here it is important to do so, both to answer the question as to the extent that Daniel 7 was used in early Christianity, and to take seriously the possibility that the term 'Son of man' might have been derived from Daniel 7 by Jesus himself, or at a stage in the development of traditions about him prior to the writing down of the Gospels. The situation was thus different from that involved in trying to assess the amount of use of Daniel 7 in the intertestimental period and in early patristic literature. Here demonstrable use of Daniel 7 by the authors of the documents is a satisfactory index of the amount of its use, whereas in the Gospel evidence it was necessary to examine the possibility that Daniel 7 had been influential in a manner unknown to the authors of the Gospels.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-01-2014, 09:17 AM
Continuation of Maurice Casey's Introduction to Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7:


Throughout the investigation, I used two criteria in considering cases of possible literary dependence. The first is verbal similarity. The second is that the thought of the dependent passage shall not be such as to be inconsistent with the hypothesis of literary dependence on the Old Testament passage in question. Similarity of thought on its own is not a sufficient guarantee of literary dependence, particularly where the thought in question occurs in documents other than those being considered. The application of such a criterion would moreover be especially hazardous in dealing with a period of history such as the intertestimental period, where most documents have long since perished, and an idiom of thought found in two documents written two hundred years apart may have been expressed in lost documents in the intervening years. Furthermore, the question as to what the authors of documents studied imagined the thoughts in Daniel 7 to be is to some extent at issue.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-02-2014, 10:44 AM
Continuation of Maurice Casey's Introduction to Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7:


It is unfortunate, but unavoidable, that the two criteria (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=114653&viewfull=1#post114653) selected for use are lacking in mathematical precision. However, I do not think that, in the case of the material surveyed in this book, the results of this are serious. There are, it is true, cases where the question of literary dependence has not been finally resolved: 2 Baruch is the outstanding example. Usually, however, this is not the case. It is important that, while it is, both theoretically and practically, impossible to draw an accurate line in a specified place between literary dependence on the one side and lack of it on the other, it is contingently true that it is often possible to place a given document on one side or the other of that imaginary line. That is what is of practical importance, and it has been successfully achieved with almost all documents discussed, and in all cases that should be considered to be genuinely important. In doing it, I have provided more detailed discussions of the practical application of these criteria to particular sections of the evidence, and I have examined the outstanding efforts of previous scholars to do the same. Moreover, in the central example, the use of Daniel 7.13 in the Gospels, I was able to employ a completely different set of arguments to show that the group of Son of man sayings dependent on Daniel 7.13 was not significantly larger than careful employment of these two criteria had suggested. This confirmed the appropriateness of careful use of these two criteria.

We may now begin by establishing the original author's interpretation of Daniel 7.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-03-2014, 12:51 PM
Beginning of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


The place of Daniel 7 within the book of Daniel as a whole has been a major source of difficulty. While the book appears to divide into two parts at the end of chapter 6, chapters 1-6 consisting of stories and chapters 7-12 of visions, it is written in two languages, Daniel 1-2.4a, 8-12 being in Hebrew and 2.4b-7 in Aramaic, and this division puts Daniel 7 with the stories of 2-6 instead of with the visions. The linguistic division is fundamental, and formal grounds can now be found for classifying 7 with 2-6. If we view Daniel 2-7 as a unit, its stories appear to be chiastically arranged. On the outside are two dreams embodying the four kingdom theory, according to which the destruction of the fourth world kingdom will be followed by the divinely ordained triumph of the kingdom of God. Next, Daniel 3 and 6 are martyrologies, in which however the self-sacrifice of the heroes leads, not to their death, but to their deliverance by God. Thirdly, Daniel 4-5 correspond in the middle. Both concern rebellious kings. Nebuchadnezzar repented and obeyed, and was pardoned. Belshazzar did not, and was therefore destroyed.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-04-2014, 08:38 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


This complete collection (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=115335&viewfull=1#post115335) puts forward a simple and unified message. While some, at least, of the stories depend on old traditions, all have very simple, straightforward, and vital relevance for a single author who used them when he and his fellows suffered persecution and war. God is supreme and faithful: he will punish our enemies, and deliver us. The different groups of stories stress different facets, though one should be careful not to analyse too strictly a form of expression whose whole nature is dramatic and illustrative rather than analytical. In 4 and 5 the judgment of the kings of the ruling empire by God stresses the supremacy of God himself. In 3 and 6, the accent is on the deliverance of the individual. In 2 and 7, the stress is on the destruction of the oppressors and the deliverance of the community.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-05-2014, 08:31 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


The correspondence of 2 and 7 (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=115335&viewfull=1#post115335) is especially important for this investigation. All ancient commentators make much of it, and anyone who finds that dreams and stories are natural modes of expression would regard it as more important than any formal distinction between 1-6 on the one hand and 7 on the other. The importance of Daniel 2 lies in 2:31-45, which consists of a dream and its interpretation, corresponding to the dream and interpretation of Daniel 7. It not wrong to point out also that Daniel 7 has actually got a narrative framework, verses 1 and 28, corresponding to the narrative framework of Daniel 2.1-30, 46-9, but it does no good to minimize the fact that 2.1-30, 46-9 is a fine story, whereas 7.1, 28 is only just there. The explanation of this difference lies in the contents of 2.31-45 and the nature of our author. Daniel 2.31-45 presents a pagan king having a dream of the future triumph. That is remarkable, and demands some sort of narrative setting. Daniel 3-6 shows clearly enough that the author had a natural gift for telling stories, so it is not surprising that the setting of 2.31-45 is a story of some length and considerable artistry, which has always attracted widespread admiration. The dream and its interpretation form a very good climax.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-06-2014, 11:36 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Daniel 7 is somewhat different. The dreamer is the main hero, whose character and attainments are so clear that it is no surprise to find him too dreaming dreams. All that is necessary is therefore a statement that he did so on a particular occasion, and some sort of conclusion (Daniel 7.1, 28). A story is not necessary on grounds of context, because the general setting is already clear enough and the point is the dream and its interpretation, and a story is not necessary on grounds of form because the author's ideas of form were not as rigid as that. To get his chiastic structure he needed another dream of the four kingdoms and the Jewish triumph, together with its interpretation, and this is what he supplied; to a natural story-teller it did not matter that he had put a good story round the first dream and interpretation.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-07-2014, 05:49 PM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


These two dreams correspond in what they symbolize. There will be a sequence of four kingdoms, of which Nebuchadnezzar's is the first. The fourth will be most terrible, but at length it will be destroyed, and the Jewish people will triumph, by the ordinance of their God. That the symbolism of the two separate dreams should correspond need not be maintained, and for the most part it is clearly not the case. That the metals of the image in Daniel 2 decline in preciousness is probably due simply to the use of ancient symbolism, since the author does not stress this decline. Certainly the correspondence between Daniel 2 and Daniel 7 should not be forced by seeing the four beasts in a declining sequence too. The fourth beast was intended to be worse than the other three, but this does not establish a complete declining sequence of four. A decisive factor is the lack of any indication, symbolic or real, that the third beast is worse than the second. To suggest that the bear and leopard mark a decline from the bear and the eagle, the kings of beasts and birds, is to point out that there is no decline from bear to leopard, and to stress that the Babylonian kingdom was more favorable to Israel both shifts the argument from symbolism to reality and points up the lack of evidence that the Persians are considered to mark a decline from the Medes. Attempts to demonstrate more detailed correspondence in the symbolism of the two chapters are open to more obvious criticism. For example, the appendages of the first beast have no parallel in Daniel 2―there is no reason why they should have. Finally there is some development in Daniel 7 over Daniel 2: Daniel 7 has more ample description, especially in its picture and interpretation of the little horn. None of this is sufficient to upset the basic literary structure of Daniel 2-7. Daniel 2 and 7 broadly correspond in all important matters; there is no reason to imagine that they should have corresponded at the level of more precise detail.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-08-2014, 08:29 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Daniel 2―7 may therefor be seen as a unified literary structure, the work of a single author. But what of Daniel 1, 8―12? Were they written by the same man? The matter is difficult to resolve, but the two languages suggest two authors, and a reasonable hypothesis may begin from the unified literary structure of Daniel 2―7. This was written first. Its message is simple, as we have seen, and its function in time of persecution is clear and well-known, that of fortifying the faithful. Aramaic was the natural language in which to write this material because it was intended to have popular appeal and Aramaic was the lingua franca of the time. The choice of Hebrew for the remaining material may be ascribed to deliberate nationalism. It is most natural to ascribe this change of policy to a change of author. In time of war and persecution, change of authorship in such an important and successful religious work may have a simple and unavoidable cause―the death of the first author.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-09-2014, 09:23 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


If this conjecture (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=118011&viewfull=1#post118011) is right, the author of Daniel 2―7 left behind him a unified collection of stories and dreams. Someone else, writing now in the Jewish national tongue, furnished them with an introduction. He made a little beginning to the first of the original stories in Hebrew, but his Hebrew was not the most brilliant, and everyone admired the existing collection of stories, so he left the translation at 'in Aramaic' (2.4). It is that kind of device―clever at the most mechanical level, dissatisfying to anyone literary. It reeks of someone who could not manage to translate 2.4b―7, though it may be he had respectable reasons, including lack of time. Then he, or other men, added the three sections of Daniel 8, 9, and 10―2. They are of unrelieved solemnity, perhaps unlikely to be the work of a natural story-teller (but not impossibly so, if he were constrained by recent disaster or an unfamiliar tongue).

To be continued...

John Reece
11-10-2014, 09:22 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


This reconstruction (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=118404&viewfull=1#post118404) is in a measure imaginative, but it does explain the basic evidence. More detailed investigation of the languages has been attempted, but it has been more learned than successful: the problems of method are severe, and compounded by the small quantity of both languages surviving for comparison, and this explains the failure to achieve any useful results. There is nothing here to overthrow the prima facie impression that the Hebrew is of different authorship from the Aramaic. Finally, the similarities between 7 and 8―12 may not be urged in favour of unity of authorship, since they are perfectly explicable on the assumption that the second author (and, if need be, the third and fourth) belonged to the same religious group as the first author and took up his work when he died.

Hence, probability is on the side of a separate author for Daniel 8―12, though certainly has not been achieved. It is therefore reasonable to use these chapters with caution to illustrate the religious environment and general viewpoint of the author of Daniel 7.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-11-2014, 08:40 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


We can now establish the date of Daniel 7. When it was completed, the persecution of Antiochus Epiphanes was already underway, as is clear from the account and interpretation of the little horn. The date is therefore somewhat after December, 167 B.C. The three-and-a-half-year interval to the Maccabean victory is inaccurate: the expanded version of the story in 11.40 ff. is certainly wrong. Therefore this is a genuine prediction, and the date is somewhat before December 164 B.C. Allowance has to be made for 1, 8―12 to be written early enough for 11.40 ff. to seem plausible. From these factors it follows that Daniel 2―7 is to be dated in 166 or 165 B.C. The Qumran fragments of Daniel may not be held against this. It is very exciting that we have some fragments written so soon after the composition of this book, and verifying that already it was written in both languages just as we have it now. This does not, however, constitute proof that it was already regarded was Scripture in the full sense which that word later came to have, and we have no evidence that suggests that this period of time was too short for its acceptance as a sacred book. Interpretative traditions of this work also suggest that its pseudepigraphic device was successful. There is nothing wrong with the suggestion that it was successful quickly.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-12-2014, 08:12 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


But have we now dated the composition of Daniel 7, or only its final redaction? There have been several theories of the redaction history of the chapter. They are important because they suggest the possibility of a written source in which the man-like figure was something other than a symbol of the Saints of the Most High. Some authors have thus been able to use this chapter as evidence that there once existed a 'Son of man Concept' in pre-Christian Judaism. The most important attempts in recent years to trace out the pre-history of the chapter have been those of Hölscher, Noth, and Dequeker. These must therefore be examined in some detail.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-13-2014, 09:10 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Hölscher argues that the pre-Maccedonian version of Daniel 7 did not include verses 7b, 8, 11a, 20-2, 24-5. He begins with verse 11, where there is a genuine difficulty which has led some scholars who do not follow the view that this chapter has a complex literary history to suppose that something has gone wrong at this particular point. The versions are not very helpful. The omission of verse 11a in the Peshitta must be ascribed to homoioarcton: the repetition of 'I was looking' is unnecessary to the sense, so it is not surprising that LXX and Theodotion omitted the second occurrence of it. The main point is that מן must be taken as a temporal particle. This makes excellent sense, whereas in the middle of such a dramatic vision there is no need for an explanation as to why Daniel should have continued to watch it. באדין normally occurs at the beginning of a sentence in Daniel because elsewhere it introduces a statement of an event subsequent to those previously related, but here it is in a different position because it picks up the events of verse 8. An interruption in the account of the activity of the little horn was desirable so that the scene could be set for the passing of judgment, but Daniel did not cease to notice the blasphemy of the little horn. באדין here denotes events which began to take place before the events of verses 9-10, and this accounts for its unusual position, for which there is a good parallel in 1 QApGen XXII,


ואברם באדין הוא יתב בחברון

'Now at that time Abram was living in Hebron.' Daniel 7.11 may therefore be translated 'I was watching then, from the time when I heard the blasphemous words which the horn was speaking, I was watching until the beast was slain . . .'. Dequeker complains that the 'regular translational formula' חזה הוית עד די is interrupted: it will be argued that his ideas of transitional formulae are more rigid than those of our author. The effect of the repetition of 'I was watching' is to quicken the tempo of the narrative just at the point where the terrible enemy is to be destroyed. The author's Aramaic has been misunderstood, and here as elsewhere his resolution of a literary problem by means of a formulation which deliberately seeks a literary effect has remained unappreciated.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-14-2014, 09:45 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Hölscher then argues for the omission of verse 8, on the ground that אלו is used here only in Daniel 7 instead of ארו. Haller added that ארו is the older form. Rowley replied, pointing out that the prima facie evidence of the book of Daniel is that the author used both forms, as ארו occurs also in 2.31, 4.7, 10. Dequeker remains unconvinced. 'They do not explain however the variation of the formulas in Daniel 7. Daniel 2 and 4 have only ʾlw. That means that the basic text of Daniel 7, which has ʾrw, may be older than Daniel 2 and 4. . . .' We may now add the information that ארו is still used in 11QTgJob, 1QApGen and 4Q Giants. Dequeker's argument is unsound for two reasons. Firstly, if ארו was replaced by אלו as the Aramaic language developed, there will have been a period of transition in which either form might be used. We do not have sufficient evidence outside the book of Daniel to enable us to date any transition, but it is now evident that ארו continued to be used after the time when Daniel 7 was finally written down. During any such transition period, the possibility has to be admitted that an author may have used both forms. The contrary has to be demonstrated, not simply assumed. Rowley already pointed this out, citing the use of ארקא and ארעא side by side at Jer. 10:11 and in the Elephantine papyri, which provide many examples of the same phenomenon. Secondly, the number of occurrences of each form is too small for observations such as 'Daniel 2 and 4 have only ʾlw' to have any real force. It is to be concluded that Rowley's arguments stand. The author used ארו and אלו, five times each. The demand that he should have been consistent has never been justified.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-15-2014, 10:03 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Dequeker further objects to משׂתכל instead of the 'regular' חזה. But the variation is deliberate, to concentrate attention on the little horn. שׂכל has a different semantic field from חזה and the difference is really well used here, as Plöger had already seen. Dequeker's reply is mere reference to 'the structure and style'. He could better have cited Procrustes. Dequeker next objects to the perfect סִלְקָת; he thinks we should have a participle, as after ארו in verses 2, 3, 5, and 7. 'Montgomery and Ginsberg have seen the difficulty, changing the aorist of the Massoretic text into a participle.' This misrepresents Montgomery, who showed proper philological concern about the MT סִלְקָת and suggested that the original consonantal text סלקת might have been intended to be a participial form, which he vocalized סִלקַת. Delcor had already replied to Ginsberg. The use of the perfect is quite normal. It may be added that the variation in tense increases the dramatic quality of the description and helps to focus the reader's attention on the little horn, which is just where the author intended to focus it. Dequeker's final argument from the 'syntaxis' is to object to the hithpeel (sic) passive אתעקרו instead of the 'regular' passive qal and hophal forms. But his base for determining what is 'regular' is far too narrow: he has given no reason at all for regarding this kind of variation as abnormal within the work of a single writer. Finally, these arguments should not be held to carry cumulative weight, because none of them carries any weight on its own. It will be noted that I have supposed two kinds of variation in the author's work, random variation of a kind which normally occurs, and deliberate variation for literary effect. Neither Dequeker nor anyone else has really got down to arguing that these kinds of variation do not occur in the work of normal authors. Yet only if this assumption is made can the persistent attempts of these literary critics to point out (usually with perfect accuracy) that there are variations between verse 8 and other verses of this chapter actually constitute evidence of separate authorship.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-16-2014, 10:52 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Hölscher turns next to 7.20-2, which are, in his view, rather pointlessly repetitive. He objects particularly to 7.21, on the ground that this does not offer any interpretation of the dream but forms a later addition to it, one which would have been better placed after 7.8. Putting it there illustrates well enough the prosaic and unimaginative mind of the critic, far removed from the creative histrionics of our author. The effect of verse 21 in its present position is to increase the dramatic quality of the narrative. Moreover, we shall see that the position of verses 20-2 was necessitated by the author's choice of symbolism. The man-like figure cannot suffer, and it is only when he has been identified as the Saints of the Most High that Daniel can see them humiliated. This could not be said at verse 8. Finally it should be remembered that this is not the sudden occurrence of part of a vision in the middle of its interpretation: Daniel is dreaming throughout the chapter. Hölscher adds two arguments from the vocabulary: דינא in verse 22 has a different sense from דינא in 7.10, 26, and חזו in verse 20 a different sense from its occurrences in 7:1-15. Again the observation is sound, but the conclusions do not follow. Words have semantic fields, not single meanings, and authors habitually make use of them. The author of Daniel 7 is in this respect simply normal, and a very precise parallel to his use of חזו in two senses is now to be found in 4Q ʿAmramb I, 10-4.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-17-2014, 10:26 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Hölscher next attacks verses 24-5, on the ground that here the 'other king', that is, the little horn, is described as different from his predecessors, whereas at 7.7 it is the fourth beast which is said to be different from its predecessors. And why not? The author had very good reason to believe it of both. Hölscher then tries to use Daniel 8―12 to bolster his argument: but that their contents correspond with the verses he wants to excise is equally consistent with unity of authorship and with the conjecture the 8―12 was written after 7 by someone else. He then excises verse 7b 'and it had ten horns', but his argument derives what little plausibility it possesses from his omission of the climax to the description of the fourth beast by excising verse 8.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-18-2014, 09:54 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Haller used Hölscher's critical position to date Daniel 7 earlier than Daniel 2, at about the time of Alexander the Great. One more of his arguments is worthy or mention, because it illustrates how much the literary criticism of this chapter has fed on itself. He argues that the author of Daniel 2 had more knowledge of the Greek kingdom than had the author of Daniel 7. The reason for that judgement was that Hölscher and Haller had excised most of what chapter 7 has to say about the Greek kingdom.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-19-2014, 10:56 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Noth based himself on the earlier work of Hölscher and Haller, and contributed to a new argument from the structure of the chapter, which Dequeker still largely accepts. On the basis of the opening verses of this chapter Noth constructed a rigid structural schema: finding that the remainder of the chapter does not fit his schema, he resorted to the excision of the offending parts. But the method of this procedure is unsound. It is true that if verses 2-8 are examined in isolation, they can divided into four sections: three begin חזה הוית . . . וארו, as does verse 13, and וארו in verse 5 can plausibly be described as part of this same formula. It is also true that twice here, and again in verse 11, events are introduced with the formula חזה הוית עד די. But it is also very important from the structural point of view that already at this stage the operation of these formulae is flexible rather than rigid, and that Noth has to admit omission and abbreviation. When more striking variations from Noth's schema are found in the rest of the chapter, it should be concluded, not that the author's work has been upset, but that the author's ideas of introductory formulae were not as rigid as those of Noth. The occurrences of חזה הוית עד די in verses 9, 11b are just as much a part of the primary evidence as the formulae in the opening verses. When all the primary evidence is taken into account, it becomes clear that the author was somewhat flexible in his use of these phrases. It is useful to compare 2Q24, which also has חזה הוית עד די at line 17, but at lines 11 and 15 has the variants חזית עד די and חזי הוית עד. This is not the same as Daniel 7, but the significant factor is that here too the formula is not inflexible.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-20-2014, 09:57 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Noth further developed his argument by trying to show that the author of the Similitudes of Enoch did use Daniel 7 but knew only verses 9, 10, and 13. This is unconvincing: the author of the Similitudes gave Enoch the substance of verse 14 and had no use for verses 11 and 12, not because they were not there, but because he had no use for the four kingdom theory embodied in them. Noth's argument for a separate literary source behind Daniel 7.9ff. thus collapses. He develops his argument further with reference to the angelic interpretation. Obviously those parts of it which interpret secondary additions to the vision must themselves be secondary, so out goes most of the interpretation, and Noth finds himself left with verse 17 alone. He then concludes that this is too short! This is a classic example of the catastrophic results that can follow from the rigid application of the techniques of some literary critics. The brevity has nothing to do with the author, but is the achievement of Noth, whose critical operations were so arbitrary and so remote from the literature he was dealing with that they could not possibly demonstrate anything.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-21-2014, 08:46 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Dequeker continues to adhere in general to Noth's analysis, but his opinion that 'Noth's surgical operation is too radical' only serves to underline the fact that the criteria which he uses for making decisions about authenticity and redaction are no less arbitrary than those of Noth. He is able to make only one effective point against earlier defenders of the unity of the book of Daniel, in that he does give a convincing outline of circumstances under which what he regards as the original substratum of Daniel 7 might have been written. For this purpose he makes use of mostly recent work on the 'opposition history' of the Hellenistic period. However, this general point demonstrates no more than that this kind of writing could have been done at an earlier period; it does not show that Daniel is actually based on an earlier literary source.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-22-2014, 09:01 AM
Continuation of chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


It is to be concluded that attempts to find an older literary source behind Daniel 7 (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=123902&viewfull=1#post123902) have not been successful. They are less numerous than at first appears, because they depend on each other. All fail because of the inadequacy of the criteria which they use. Most assume that the author's habits were extremely rigid, and can be deduced from a small proportion of his work and then applied to the rest. None takes sufficiently seriously the variation and flexibility found in the work of real authors, whether in random variation or for deliberate effect. This does not of course preclude the possibility that the author used old stories and old ideas. We shall see that in chapter 7 he did indeed make use of older material, though not in the same way that literary critics assume. The real importance of this result is twofold. First, the present text of Daniel 7 does not provide evidence of an older source which dealt with the supreme figure of 'the Son of man'. Secondly, the only interpretation of verses 2-14 which we have is the angelic interpretation in verses 1-27: it tells us what the author meant by his symbolism.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-23-2014, 08:24 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


We can now establish the original author's interpretation of Daniel 7. It falls naturally into two main parts: first in verses 2-14 Daniel sees a symbolic dream, then in verses 17-27 one of the angels in his dream interprets it for him. It begins, however, with a brief narrative framework. Since Daniel has the dream, an angelic interpreter is required: he is put in the dream, and the opening verse gives us the basic information of the date and the authentic information that Daniel wrote the dream himself. The date under Belshazzar has provoked comment because so far the stories of Daniel 2―6 have appeared to be set in chronological order. Daniel 2 is dated in the second year of Nebuchadnezzar, Daniel 4 must be placed later in his reign, and it is natural to suppose that Daniel 3 took place in the meantime. Daniel 5 is then set under Belshazzar, and Daniel 6 under Darius. However, chronological sequence cannot follow further, because the destruction of Babylon is not to be foretold after it occurred, and the setting of Daniel 5 and 6 under different kings from those of Daniel 4 and 3 is also to be related to the chiastic literary structure of Daniel 2―7. For these reasons Daniel 7 was to be set under a Babylonian king other than Nebuchadnezzar, and this makes Belshazzar a natural choice.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-24-2014, 08:28 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


The symbolic part of the vision falls naturally into two sections. In verses 2-8 four beasts rise from the turbulent sea; in verses 9-14 the fourth is destroyed in a divine judgment and sovereignty is given to the man-like figure. The location of the whole scene has been problematical. I shall argue that the beasts come out of the Mediterranean Sea on the shore of the land of Israel, and that it is here in Israel that the judgment is placed.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-25-2014, 09:11 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


The identification of the 'big sea' as the Mediterranean is crucial. There are two points. The Jews were acquainted with several seas, of which the Mediterranean is the biggest, and genuinely big, so it is natural that they would term it 'the big sea'. Secondly, OT evidence, simple and straightforward, shows abundantly that they actually did so, and this is now further confirmed by 1QApGen 21, 16 where 'the big sea' is again clearly the Mediterranean. To explain why the author brings the beasts out of the Mediterranean we must consider the matter from a different perspective. In the OT the sea is used to symbolize the turbulent world and peoples, Isa. 17.12f. (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=isa+17%3A12-13&version=NRSV), Jer. 46.7f. (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=jer+46%3A7-8&version=NRSV) More than that, the sea has mythological overtones―it is the domain of all that is opposed to God. Hence it forms a perfect contrast to the clouds of Daniel 7.13 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A13&version=ASV). If Babylonian material lies behind this, it is a long way behind. Nearer at hand (and more recently discovered and canvased) are the Ugaritic texts, in which Baal does battle with Yamm the sea monster. Above all, clear evidence of this way of thought occurs in the OT, notably at Isa. 27.1 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=isa+27%3A1&version=NRSV); 51.9-10 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=isa+51%3A9-10&version=NRSV); Pss. 74.13f. (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=psa+74%3A13-14&version=NRSV); 89.10-1 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=psa+89%3A10-11&version=NRSV). If we consider this now, as we should, from the author's own perspective, it means that in using the sea as a symbol of hostility to God he was drawing on native Israelite imagery, as a conservative defender of the traditional faith might be expected to. Finally, there is no inconsistency in locating the dream in a definite place while using material with mythological overtones. It is useful to compare Psa. 104.25-6 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=psa+104%3A25-26&version=NRSV), where the great sea has Leviathan (the terrible Chaostier l-t-n in his home the Chaosmeer) in it and the ships on it. The dramatic imagery is heightened by the use of the four winds to whip up the sea into a storm. The winds are the four cardinal winds. It is not surprising that they are found in the Babylonian epic of creation, but it is more relevant that they were already in use in Israel (Jer. 49.36 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=jer+49%3A36&version=NRSV); Zech. 2.6 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=zech+2%3A6&version=NRSV); 6.5 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=zech+6%3A5&version=NRSV); cf. also Dan. 8.8 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+8%3A8&version=NRSV); 11.4 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+11%3A4&version=NRSV)).

To be continued...

John Reece
11-26-2014, 09:23 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


In verse 3 the four beasts come out of the sea on to the land. It may be assumed that they came in a line, because this harmonizes so well with the following description as a whole and especially with the fact that they are described as 'first', 'second', and 'fourth'. That they do come on to the land is not stated explicitly in verse 3, but it can be deduced from the detailed description of them in verses 4-8. In verse 4 the first beast is lifted off the ground; this could happen only if it was on the ground. It is put back on the ground when it is stood on its feet. The fourth beast must also have been on the ground to indulge in its terrifying activities, 'devouring, shattering and trampling the residue with its feet'. The total situation of the second beast, and particularly its position raised up on one side, is also best accounted for by supposing that it is depicted on land in verse 5. The description of the third beast is perfectly consistent with the supposition that it too was on land.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-27-2014, 07:30 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


It is clear from this evidence that when the author described the beasts in verse 3 as coming up from the sea he actually meant that they came up from the sea onto the land. סלק is a natural word to describe this process, and it will never have occurred to the author that his words could be taken to mean the beasts might ascend in a mysterious and unfamiliar manner from the middle of the sea. Since he was a Jew, it may be assumed that the land in question is the land of Israel, and this assumption will be confirmed by the location of the scene of judgment in verses 9ff.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-28-2014, 10:51 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


The four beasts symbolizes four kingdoms, and Rowley has conclusively demonstrated the correctness of the normal critical identification of them as Babylon, Media, Persia, and Greece. That there was a sequence of four kingdoms which would be succeeded by a fifth is one of the older ideas which our author used. The sequence, which originated in oriental political and religious circles, had earlier begun with Assyria, but the Jews had replaced Assyria with Babylon, a step which led to historical errors in dealing with the kingdom of the Medes. Since this is the reason for the sequence Babylon, Media, Persia, Greece, we should not associate it with the order of the winds in Enuma Elish IV, 40. This illustrates the fragile nature of some of the parallels drawn from Babylonia.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-29-2014, 09:32 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


In choosing beasts to symbolize all these foreign kingdoms, the author made use of the traditional Israelite idea that rebellion against God is beastlike rather than manly. The use of beasts to symbolize gentile nations is common enough in the OT, e.g. Jer. 4.7; 5.6; Exek. 29.3f.; Pss. 68.31; 80.14. The general idea of Mischwesen rather than more straightforward animals was widespread in oriental art. For the selection of these particular beasts to symbolize these particular kingdoms the author appears to have been dependent on current astrological symbolism, as this theory explains the choice of all the beasts.

To be continued...

John Reece
11-30-2014, 09:39 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


For Babylon, however, the author could look back to the OT to confirm his choice of a lion and even add the symbolism of the eagle―Jer. 4.7 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=jere+4%3A7&version=NRSV); 49.19 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=jere+49%3A19&version=NRSV); 50.17 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=jere+50%3A17&version=NRSV); 49.22 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=jere+49%3A22&version=NRSV); Lam. 4.19 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=lam+4%3A19&version=NRSV); Hab. 1.8 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=hab+1%3A8&version=NRSV); Ezek. 17.3ff (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=ezek+17%3A3-8&version=NRSV). The events of this verse recall the story of Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel 4. This is not coincidental: the beast becomes more like a man to symbolize Nebuchadnezzar's repentance. The symbolism of the first beast is the only one that can provide any events to form a realistic counterbalance to verses 7-8. This should not be surprising, since most of the stories of Daniel 2―7 are set in Babylon which therefore looms large in this book, and it is not in any way unsatisfactory that the first beast should most nearly balance the last two less weighty descriptions in between. The only event in verse 5 is the command to 'eat much flesh', which hardly amounts to more than recognition of Median destructiveness. The rest of the description makes best sense as a colourful description of a voracious bear, rather than an allegory of the Medes. The third beast is another of the Mischwesen (http://www.dict.cc/german-english/Mischwesen.html), being in this respect like the first and the fourth, and its details should probably be regarded like those of the second, as riotous description rather than allegorical detail.

To be continued...

John Reece
12-01-2014, 01:08 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


The fourth beast is different from the others, as we are told, so terrible that it is not likened to any real beast. Its details really are allegorical, to enable the author to expound contemporary history with the assumption that the End is at hand. He concentrates our attention on the fourth beast, and above all on the little horn, whose identification as Antiochus Epiphanes is rightly unquestioned among serious critical scholars. The ten horns are the Seleucid line—Alexander the Great, Seleucus I Nicator, Antiochus I Soter, Antiochus II Theos, Seleucus II Callinicus, Seleucus III Ceraunus, Antiochus III the Great, Seleucus IV Philopator, Demetrius I Soter, and Antiochus. The last three are the three horns uprooted before the little horn. Verse 24 explains that this means that the last king (viz. the little horn, Antiochus IV Epiphanes) will put down three of the kings of the fourth kingdom. Seleucus IV was murdered by Heliodorus: clearly our author believed that Antiochus IV Epiphanes was behind it. This belief is reflected also in Daniel 11:21, and was not unreasonable. Demetrious I Soter did not become king until 162. Our author was not aware that this would happen, as he wrote in 166-5, but he classified Demetrious among the kings because he was the eldest son of, and hence the rightful heir to, his father Seleucus IV Philopator. He was a hostage in Rome at the time of Seleucus' murder, so Antiochus IV Epiphanes was able to seize power. This situation fits 'uproot' (אתעקרו, verse 8 ), and 'put down' (יהשׁפיל, verse 24), the latter a general term deliberately chosen to include this usurpation as well as two murders. For the remaining horn was murdered too. He was a young boy, co-regent of Antiochus IV Epiphanes, done to death on Antiochus' orders in 170 BC. His name too was Antiochus. Probably he was a younger son of Seleucus IV, adopted at the age of 4 or 5 by Antiochus IV Epiphanes when he seized the throne, but some uncertainty over detail must not be allowed to obscure the basic identification.

To be continued...

John Reece
12-02-2014, 01:11 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


With this Antiochus (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=128018&viewfull=1#post128018) we have a coherent and convincing identification for all the fourth beast's horns. A little uncertainty must remain about the beginning of the list. Since the fourth beast is the Macedonian kingdom, it probably began with Alexander, the first Macedonian king and the real destroyer of the third kingdom. The author is not the sort of historian who is likely to have been worried by the fact that the Seleucid era was reckoned from Seleucus I in 312, or by the gap between 323 and 312 (if he knew of it). However the uncertain situation in these years may have led him to take a different view, reckoning the fourth beast as the Macedonian kingdom which destroyed the Persians, and bringing up a list of eleven Syro-Macedonian kings starting perhaps with Antigonus. This degree of uncertainty is due to the looseness of the author's criteria, which will have enabled him to take whichever of these views appeared to him to be historically accurate, and to our ignorance of his precise views of the history of that period. It does not affect the basic identification of the horns as the Seleucid line, nor the detailed working out of the last three of the ten horns. As always, our author speaks with the greatest clarity and detail of his own period. He will have found all his information in earlier sources. Whether they were written or oral we do not know, but at this level we can demonstrate he used them. They bear no resemblance to Daniel 7 itself, and they help to obviate any need to be vague about the older material which our author used.

To be continued...

John Reece
12-03-2014, 10:38 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Verses 9-14 deal with the divine judgement of the fourth beast and the triumph of the man-like figure. In verses 3-8 the beasts came out of the Mediterranean Sea on to the land, presumably, we conjectured, the land of Israel. No change of scene is marked at the beginning of verse 9. We have no right to suppose one, and this is confirmed by the use of the formula 'I was watching until', which elsewhere in this chapter always denotes an action which takes place against the background of the existing scenery―it is difficult to see how it could do otherwise. It follows that the judgement in verses 9-12 takes place on earth. There are other examples of this at Enoch 1.3-9; 90.20ff.; 4Q Giants; cf. 1 Enoch 25.3. At Enoch 90.20 the land of Israel is specified as the place of judgement, a predictable view among Jews. Thus we have independent contemporary evidence of the view which I have attributed to the author of Daniel 7. If the judgement is is on earth, God will have to come to earth in order to carry it out. This is not explicitly stated at verse 9, because it is not an important aspect of what the author wanted to say. The scene is sufficiently sketched out by declaring that the thrones were put in position and an Ancient of Days took his seat, his arrival for that purpose being assumed. It is stated explicitly in the summary at verse 22: 'until the Ancient of Days came'. The coming of God for judgment was already part of Old Testament belief (cf. Zech. 14.5; Psa. 96.13; Joel 3.12).

John Reece
12-04-2014, 11:33 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


This interpretation provides an excellent connection between verses 2-8 and verses 9-14, and we shall see that from the point of view of their content verses 9-14 make an organically connected whole. Some scholars have however argued on metrical grounds that a separate source is to be distinguished behind verses 9, 10, 13, and 14, and Perrin has recently distinguished these verses from the rest of the chapter on the basis of their metric structure alone. This argument is unconvincing, because our understanding of the metre of Semitic poetry is not exact enough to form a sound basis for emending texts or distinguishing literary sources.

John Reece
12-05-2014, 10:56 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


At verse 9 the Ancient of Days appears for the first time. He is clearly God, and the description is that of an old man. He is not likened to an ancient of days, for the beings described as 'like' something are all pure symbols; God really exists. Moreover he had existed for a a very long time, and this piece of imagery should not be held to imply that he had not existed for ever before―we are still dealing with imagery rather than precise description, and a being who was 'from of old' (Psa. 118.2) was necessarily ancient of days. If there are echoes of Ugarit they are far behind. Man was made in the image of God, and there were old men in Israel, so that the use of imagery taken from the dignity of old age should not cause surprise.

John Reece
12-06-2014, 08:37 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


The plural 'thrones (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A9&version=NRSV)' are for the heavenly court to sit on (verse 10b (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A10&version=NRSV)). Mowinckel used them to argue that the man-like figure originally took part in the judgment, but this left him with nowhere for the court to sit, and it should be accepted that the man-like figure does not take part in the judgment because the text does not give him this function. The divine throne is altogether more splendid and fiery; the imagery is in the tradition of Ezekiel, and had been Israelite for some time. So had the heavenly host, seen already by Michaiah ben Imlah (1 Kings 22.19 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+kings+22%3A19&version=NRSV)): God would not come alone for judgement (e.g., Zech. 14.5 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=zech+14%3A5&version=NRSV)).

John Reece
12-07-2014, 01:18 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Elsewhere in our meagre sources דינא means 'judgment', but here 'the abstract passes into the concrete', as Montgomery notes, comparing κριτήριου and indicium. The meaning must be that 'the court sat'. The existence of a heavenly court should be no surprise in view of the common OT idea that God has a heavenly council associated with him (e.g. Job 1 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=job+1&version=NRSV), Psa. 82 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=psa+82&version=NRSV)). As on earth, the court does not sit down until the Judge has done so; the intervening lines are simply an extended description of the Judge, together with his many attendants. The judgement then proceeds with the opening of the books. Divine books were a traditional item widespread in the ancient Near East and found in the OT (e.g. Isa. 4.3 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=isa+4%3A3&version=NRSV); Mal. 3.16 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=mal+3%3A16&version=NRSV); Psa. 69.29[28 English] (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=psa+69%3A28&version=NRSV)).

John Reece
12-08-2014, 09:38 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


With the scene thus set, the narrative proceeds without further ado, let alone any change of scenery, straight to to destruction of the fourth beast and in particular its little horn having been interrupted only for the setting of the judgement scene. The whole narrative is therefore perfectly coherent, and could not be much tauter without detracting from the splendour of the judging deity and his court. The whole of the fourth beast is necessarily destroyed. It should be clear that the destruction of the little horn itself would not have been sufficient, as it would have left the hated Macedonians still in power, and that the destruction of the whole fourth beast necessarily involves the destruction of its little horn. The first three beasts are not destroyed; no interpretation is given, but one may be surmised. Babylon, Media, and Persia will remain as separate states, serving Israel, whereas the Seleucid empire will actually be destroyed. The mention of this completes the symbolic picture of the judgement in verse 12, and was desirable after the symbolic grandeur of the appearance of the first three beasts in the vision, but the reality of the survival of these states was not important enough to the author to warrant separate mention in the interpretation where, as in Dan. 2, it is subsumed in the general picture of the triumph of Israel, who are then served by all nations.

John Reece
12-09-2014, 07:09 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (emphasis added):



The destruction of the fourth beast is the essential point of the judgement, and an essential preliminary to the passing of sovereignty to the man-like figure in verse 13-4. The full introductory formula at the beginning of verse 13 marks an important event, but not a change of scenery. Since the scene is set on earth it follows that the man-like figure comes downwards with the clouds. But who is he? His identification has been the subject of lengthy debate, and this is an appropriate place to try to bring that debate to an end.

John Reece
12-10-2014, 11:51 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


The destruction of the fourth beast is the essential point of the judgement, and an essential preliminary to the passing of sovereignty to the man-like figure in verse 13-4. The full introductory formula at the beginning of verse 13 marks an important event, but not a change of scenery. Since the scene is set on earth it follows that the man-like figure comes downwards with the clouds. ...[snip]

The assertion above by Casey calls for a pause in my transcription of his 1979 thesis, so that a second opinion may be presented by a competent scholar of the Aramaic text of Daniel 7.

From Daniel: A Commentary on the Book of Daniel (Hermeneia: Augsburg/Fortress, 1993), by John J. Collins (emphasis added):


13. with the clouds of heaven: See the discussion of the religio-historical background above. The preposition עם, "with," is variously rendered in the versions. Montgomery sees here a theological nuance, arguing that a deity would come on the clouds, but there is no basis for the distinction.* The text does not indicate whether the figure is ascending or descending or moving horizontally.


*On the one hand, R.B.Y. Scott ('Behold He Cometh with Clouds,' NTS 5 [1959] 127-32) has shown that the preposition עם is interchangeable with ב and can mean "on" or "in" (cf. Dan 2:43; 7:2); so already Torrey, "Notes on the Aramaic Part of Daniel," Transactions of the Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences 15 (1909) 282. On the other hand, clouds are associated with the Deity in a wide variety of ways in the Hebrew Bible, and the association is not dependent on the use of the preposition "on" (Yahweh appears in a cloud in Exod 19:9; 34:5; Num 11:25).

John Reece
12-11-2014, 02:48 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


In verses 13-4 the man-like figure is brought before the Ancient of Days and given sovereignty: all nations will serve him and his kingdom will last for ever. This is summarized briefly in what is said of the Saints of the Most High in verses 18 and 22, and it is explicitly stated of the people of the Saints of the Most High verse 27. It is natural, and it is important that it is the case, that this longest formulation of the triumph of the Saints echoes the language of verse 14 most accurately. What the man-like figure gets in verse 14, the people of the Saints of the Most High get in verse 27; they get nothing which was not granted to him. He corresponds to them also in the structure of the dream and its interpretation. He receives the kingdom from God after the destruction of the fourth beast: they receive the kingdom from God after the destruction of Antiochus Epiphanes, who was to be the last king of the kingdom which the fourth beast symbolized. It follows from this that the man-like figure is a symbol of the Saints of the Most High. Moreover he is a pure symbol, that is to say, he is not a real being who exists outside Daniel's dream; he is only a symbolic being within the dream. This is clear for two reasons. In the first place, the author provided an interpretation of the symbolism of this dream, which reaches a climax with the full description of the triumph of the people of the Saints of the Most High in verse 27. This triumph was very important to the author, and it corresponds precisely to what is said of the man-like figure in verse 14, but it does not mention him. If the author had viewed him as a real being who would lead or deliver the Saints, he must have mentioned him here.* The second reason is that on this view four kingdoms are represented by beast-like figures, the fifth by a man-like figure. It is not suggested that the beast-like figures really existed somewhere; we only attribute consistency to the symbolism by concluding that the man-like figure was not a real being either.

*My next post will present a challenge by Collins to Casey's highlighted-in-maroon-color-sentence quoted above.

John Reece
12-12-2014, 12:33 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


In verses 13-4 the man-like figure is brought before the Ancient of Days and given sovereignty: all nations will serve him and his kingdom will last for ever. This is summarized briefly in what is said of the Saints of the Most High in verses 18 and 22, and it is explicitly stated of the people of the Saints of the Most High verse 27. It is natural, and it is important that it is the case, that this longest formulation of the triumph of the Saints echoes the language of verse 14 most accurately. What the man-like figure gets in verse 14, the people of the Saints of the Most High get in verse 27; they get nothing which was not granted to him. He corresponds to them also in the structure of the dream and its interpretation. He receives the kingdom from God after the destruction of the fourth beast: they receive the kingdom from God after the destruction of Antiochus Epiphanes, who was to be the last king of the kingdom which the fourth beast symbolized. It follows from this that the man-like figure is a symbol of the Saints of the Most High. Moreover he is a pure symbol, that is to say, he is not a real being who exists outside Daniel's dream; he is only a symbolic being within the dream. This is clear for two reasons. In the first place, the author provided an interpretation of the symbolism of this dream, which reaches a climax with the full description of the triumph of the people of the Saints of the Most High in verse 27. This triumph was very important to the author, and it corresponds precisely to what is said of the man-like figure in verse 14, but it does not mention him. If the author had viewed him as a real being who would lead or deliver the Saints, he must have mentioned him here.* The second reason is that on this view four kingdoms are represented by beast-like figures, the fifth by a man-like figure. It is not suggested that the beast-like figures really existed somewhere; we only attribute consistency to the symbolism by concluding that the man-like figure was not a real being either.

*My next post will present a challenge by Collins to Casey's highlighted-in-maroon-color-sentence quoted above.

On pages 304-310, in his Hermeneia commentary on Daniel, John J. Collins presents an extensive Excursus on "One Like a Human Being" in Daniel 7:13; the following is an excerpt from Collins' excursus (emphasis added):


II. The kind of symbolism involved. In the context of Daniel 7, it is quite clear that the four beasts are viewed as allegorical symbols; hence the angel's interpretation in verse 17 identifies them as four kings or kingdoms. The interpretation does not necessarily exhaust the sense of the symbols, but it gives their reference. The beasts stand for entities that are more familiarly recognized as kings. Because there is an evident contrast between the beasts from the sea and the human figure who comes with the clouds, many scholars have assumed that this figure too must be an allegorical symbol. However, the apparition of the "one like a human being" is separated from the beasts in the text by the description of the Ancient of Days, which is generally accepted as a mythic-realistic symbol for God. The Ancient One is assumed to exist outside the dream, and there is no more appropriate or familiar language by which he might be described. Accordingly, we are subsequently given no identification of the Ancient of Days by the angel. It is highly significant that "the one like a human being" is not interpreted either.* He is associated with "the holy ones of the Most High" insofar as they too are said to receive the kingdom, but there is no one for one equation, such as we have with the beasts and the kings. If an argument is to be drawn from the nature of the symbolism, then, it should favor the view that the "one like a human being" is a symbol of the same order as the Ancient of Days―a mythic-realistic depiction of a being who was believed to exist outside the vision.


*Rowland, The Open Heaven, 180: "If the Son of Man figure had merely been a symbol of the Saint of the Most High, we might have expected to find the same kind of identification between the Son of Man and the saints which we find in respect of the beasts and the kings in verse 18, but this is lacking." This observation is more telling than Casey's gratuitous assertion that "if the author had viewed him as a real human being who would lead or deliver the Saints, he must have mentioned him here," at verse 27 (Son of Man, 25).

John Reece
12-13-2014, 11:06 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


The author evidently thought that in interpreting the man-like figure as the Saints of the Most High he was making his meaning clear. Unfortunately, however, the meaning of this term is also a subject of considerable debate. I shall argue that he meant the Jewish people, specifically the faithful Jews attacked by Antiochus Epiphanes, and I assume this result now. In selecting a man to symbolize the true Israel, the author was making use of some of the simplest and most basic concepts of his native Israelite religion. He believed that Israel was the chosen people of the only God, who was mindful and would deliver them. They were a holy people, and if they had done wrong (cf. Daniel 9) they repented, and because they were a righteous remnant not rebelling against God they would soon be triumphant. To symbolize this the author made use of the traditional Israelite idea that man is superior to the beasts, an idea which is expressed with great clarity in the creation narrative of Gen. 1 and in Psa. 8.6-8 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=psa+8%3A6-8&version=NRSV). From it grew the symbolism of opposition to God as brutish, and obedience to him as manly (e.g. Psa. 73.21f. (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=psa+73%3A21-22&version=NRSV)). The author had used these ideas already in Daniel 4, where Nebuchadnezzar's pride led to his condemnation to a beast-like existence. When he repented and acknowledged the sovereignty of God, Nebuchadnezzar was restored to manhood. This incident is reflected in Daniel 7.4, and these same Israelite ideas explain the author's choice of a man as a symbol of the true and obedient Israel in 7.13. Moreover, the fact that man is traditionally superior to the beasts explains why the author chose the man-like figure as a symbol of the Jews only when they are in triumph, not when they suffer.

John Reece
12-14-2014, 10:55 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


It is this symbolism, consistently maintained, which explains the apparently anomalous position of verses 21-2 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A21-22&version=NRSV), and which necessitated the summary interpretations of the symbolic part of the dream in verses 17-18 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A17-18&version=NRSV). If he was to maintain this symbolism, the author could not portray the man-like figure as suffering and humiliated by a beast. Therefore there is no mention of the suffering of Israel in the account of the fourth beast and its little horn at verses 7-8 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A7-8&version=NRSV), even though this account is relatively prolonged. The author had no symbol for Israel suffering, so the sufferings of Israel could not be portrayed until the man-like figure had been interpreted. This is the main function of the summary interpretation of verses 17-18 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A17-18&version=NRSV). The author, living among and writing for the Saints of the Most High, provided in these verses the interpretation of the man-like figure in a way which will have been much clearer to his readers than it has been to contemporary scholarship. Once this interpretation was supplied. Daniel could see the suffering of the Saints, and this follows immediately, tacked on to his question in verses 19-20 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A19-20&version=NRSV). This lengthy repetition of the description of the fourth beast and especially its little horn, in the form of Daniel's question to the interpreting angel, thus has two functions. It draws attention to the fourth beast and particularly to its little horn, and it prepares the way directly for the new piece of visionary material in verse 21 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A21&version=NRSV). Now that the man-like figure has been interpreted as the Saints of the Most High, Daniel can see the little horn making war on them, a piece of visionary material symbolizing the persecution and war brought on them by Antiochus Epiphanes. Verse 22 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A22&version=NRSV) brings added clarity and emphasis to the most important event of the chapter, the triumph of the Saints.

John Reece
12-15-2014, 12:42 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Thus (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=133145&viewfull=1#post133145) a proper understanding of the author's symbolism enables us to see clearly the point of the structure of this chapter. The order of events in verses 17ff. also increases the dramatic effect of the narrative, drawing attention to it does so to the activities of the little horn, under whom the author and his comrades lived and suffered. It results in the final triumph of the Saints being emphatically stated three times in the second half of the chapter. The author will no doubt have been well satisfied with his literary and dramatic solution to the problem he set himself by his choice of the man-like figure to represent the true Israel.

John Reece
12-16-2014, 12:43 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


His choice (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=133537&viewfull=1#post133537) was not a necessary one, in the sense that other possibilities were open to him. The author of 1 Enoch 89-110, like the later author of 4 Ezra 12, used animals in a different and more essentially neutral symbolic sense, and our author could have done the same. He had known many people martyred, so he might have produced a suffering man. However, his choice of the man-like figure as a suitable symbol for the triumph of the true Israel, is, as we have seen, a perfectly intelligible choice made on the basis of ideas found elsewhere in Jewish theology and used by him elsewhere in his book. That this was the choice that he made is demonstrated by the evidence of the text of this chapter, whose symbolism and structure are otherwise unintelligible.

John Reece
12-17-2014, 01:48 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


What about the כ? [The] 'כ retains its original nominal character as "the like of"'. It was 'like' a human being because in Daniel's dream it looked like one: however it was not in fact a human being, it was a purely symbolical being. This is true also of the first and third beasts in verses 4 and 6, though it is easily overlooked because of their peculiar features. It is true also of the second beast, which has none, but our author's habitual flexibility of expression resulted in his using a different expression here, though it is one with the same meaning, דמיה ל. The same is not said of the fourth beast because it is to be portrayed as so awful that there is nothing to compare it with, in appearance as in frightfulness. The other important being in the dream is the Ancient of Days; here there is no כ because this being exists.

From John J. Collins' Excursus: "One Like A Human Being", in Daniel: A Commentary on the Book of Daniel (Hermeneia: Augsburg Fortress, 1993), p. 305:


The preposition כ, "like," is best understood as indicating the mode of expression proper to a vision, so that "like a son of man" means a human figure seen in a vision," [Lindars, Jesus, Son of Man, 10] where the figure may or may not represent something other than a human being.

See also here. (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=132725&viewfull=1#post132725)

John Reece
12-18-2014, 07:55 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Thus (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=134553&viewfull=1#post134553) the use of כ in this chapter is consistent. It is true that it is used a little differently in the description of angels in 8-12 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A8-12&version=NRSV), but this does not matter, even if these chapters are from the same author. How different the usage is, is a function of the finesse of the analytical technique employed, not only of the primary evidence. If we are content to say that here too כ is used in expressions of comparison, then the uses in 8.15 etc. are the same as in 7.13. If we employ a finer analytical technique which differentiates between the use of כ in 7.13 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A13&version=NRSV) to describe a being which looked like a man in every way but did not in fact exist outside Daniel's dream in 8:15 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+8%3A15&version=NRSV) etc. to describe the real appearance of real angels, and in 7.4 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A4&version=NRSV), 6 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A6&version=NRSV) to describe beings which looked partly like and partly unlike something, we must add that all this falls within the semantic area of כ, and that variation within the normal semantic area of every word is normal to any author. Such an analysis cannot therefore constitute a valid argument either against the interpretation I have proposed or against the common authorship of all these passages.

John Reece
12-19-2014, 02:37 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


בר אנשׁ was described by Driver as 'a choice semi-poetical expression'. Evidence subsequently gathered, though still meagre, has made it clear that it was a normal term for 'man'. The singular does not recur in Daniel, but the plural is found twice, 2.38; 5:21. Reasons for the author's choice of it here can be plausibly surmised. Against אנשׁ, he wanted an individual rather than the species; against גבר, the less definite expression is perhaps the more suitable for a pure symbol. Montgomery's judgement appears sound: 'the expression of both category and individual was best expressed by בר אנשׁ'. Psa. 8 may have been in mind, but it is not the coincidence of בן אדם that suggests this so much as the content of verse 6, an expression of that sentiment which explains our author's choice of a man as a symbol of Israel.

John Reece
12-20-2014, 08:52 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Daniel saw the man-like figure coming down [see below -JR] 'with the clouds of heaven'. His heavenly origin is right and proper for a symbol of the chosen people of God; the idea that it makes him a divine being results from too rigid an interpretation of other texts. There are no previous examples of purely symbolic beings coming with the clouds in the OT because there are no previous examples of purely symbolic beings coming at all. It marks a perfect contrast with the beasts emerging from the sea. They are forces basically hostile to God; the chosen people symbolized by the man-like figure are God's own. The position of 'with the clouds of heaven' immediately after 'behold' properly draws the eye of the reader like that of the visionary up into the sky―the scene so far has been set entirely on the earth. This does not usually happen after ארו, and hence the unusual word order. At verse 2 an identical order of words was not required because the author began with a statement about the sea, which corresponds symbolically to the clouds, and could thus use 'and' to add the information that the beast emerged from it.

See here (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=131806&viewfull=1#post131806).

John Reece
12-21-2014, 10:25 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


There is insufficient reason to suppose that the author avoided putting the man-like figure on the clouds. Since he is coming down to earth it may be that the author considered his passage most naturally rendered with עם, but neither he nor the LXX translator can be shown to have had the finesse to see substantial difference between עם ["with"] and על ["upon"], ἐπί ["upon"] and μετά ["with"]. The LXX translator used ἐπί because that was how he saw the man-like figure coming, and the religionsgeschichtlich evidence makes his view unsurprising. The subsequent exegetical tradition shows a good variety of prepositions, and this does not appear to have any organic connection with different interpretations of the man-like figure. He is then brought before the Ancient of Days by some of the divine servants already mentioned in verse 10 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A10&version=ESV). The LXX says this explicitly, but this must be the meaning of the Aramaic text as well, for they are the appropriate beings for this task, and there is no one else to do it.

See here (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=131806&viewfull=1#post131806).

John Reece
12-22-2014, 11:38 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


The man-like figure is then given dominion, glory, and sovereignty. He cannot represent 'the rule of the saints, or the saints as invested with authority' because he comes first and then is invested with kingship and authority. As the interpretation makes clear, he simply represents the Saints. Despite being invested with such dominion, glory, and sovereignty, he is not enthroned. He is not in any way confused with the heavenly beings who constitute the court, and who do indeed sit on thrones. He is given the sovereignty to symbolize the giving of sovereignty to Israel, and every Jew knew that, so far from distracting from the sovereignty of God, this would demonstrate that God was in fact king of all the world.

Thus the corporate interpretation of the man-like figure as a symbol of the Saints of the Most High enables us to give a coherent and consistent account of the symbolism and structure of the whole of Daniel 7. Other identifications have, however, been so abundant in the scholarship of recent years that a critical survey of them is a necessary complement to the exposition of the Danielic text. The commonest of these other views is that the man-like figure is the Messiah. This view has a long tradition from the pre-critical era. One of the best recent expositions of it is that of Dhanis.

John Reece
12-23-2014, 11:27 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Dhanis (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=136495&viewfull=1#post136495) recognizes that the man-like figure represents Israel, but he argues that it represents the Messiah too. He notes that in the angelic interpretation the beasts are interpreted as kings ( מלכין, verse 17, where the reading מלכיָן with versional support is unlikely to be correct) as well as kingdoms. The author could in fact say 'kings' in his summary because like everyone else at that time he believed that a king was representative of his kingdom. Dhanis quotes two straightforward examples from the book of Daniel: 2.39 from the same author, and, what is perhaps the most striking of all, from the Hebrew part of the book, 8.21, 'And the he-goat is the king of Greece; and the great horn between its eyes is the first king'. It does not however follow from this that our author believed that Israel would have a king at all. Messianic beliefs were not universal, and the fact that our author did not share them is demonstrated by his failure to mention the Messiah anywhere, above all in his interpretation of the man-like figure. The author of the longer account of Israel's deliverance in Daniel 12 does not mention any Messiah either. It is to be concluded therefore that our author belonged to a group which did not expect a Messiah. From Daniel 10―12 we may conclude that Michael was thought of as the guardian angel of Israel; but her only king, in our author's view, will have been God. Transcendental features of the symbolism cannot be held against this because in themselves they need not involve transcendence in the being symbolized, and the author's interpretation shows that no transcendental being is involved in this particular case, but only God's chosen people whom he held in the highest possible regard. Some scholars have made use of the idea of 'corporate personality' to explain how the man-like figure can symbolize both the Messiah and the people of Israel, but this idea cannot be helpful until it is shown that the man-like figure is in fact an individual as well as a symbol of a corporate entity.

John Reece
12-24-2014, 12:33 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Dhanis (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=136891&viewfull=1#post136891) further observes that the interpreting angel never makes statements such as 'The Son of man is the Saints of the Most High', or 'Those who receive the kingdom are the Saints of the Most High', but he says only 'The Saints of the most High will receive the kingdom'. This observation, which recurs throughout the modern literature on Daniel 7, is perfectly correct but leads nowhere very significant. In the same way the author never says 'Now the little horn is another king'. His style of writing interpretations is not to do this with every item. Having set up the ten horns and briefly interpreted them, he assumes quite correctly that he simply has to proceed 'and another one will arise after them' and we shall know that he is referring to the little horn. Similarly he assumes that, if he proceeds from the beasts in verse 17 to the triumph or the Saints of the Most High in verse 27 in language very similar to that of verse 14, we shall all know he is interpreting the man-like figure. His was not an unreasonable assumption, and it has been called into question only by interpreters who do not share his ideas. He did not imagine that the man-like figure would be interpreted as the Messiah because he and the other members of his group did not expect the Messiah, because he assumed everyone would realize that the interpretation he wrote was really intended to explain what his symbolism meant, and because his interpretation supplies the expected triumph of his group as a very precise equivalent of the triumph of the man-like figure.

John Reece
12-25-2014, 11:25 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Another suggestion is that the man-like figure should be identified as Michael. The classical exposition of the view is that of N. Schmidt, and it has been revived by [J. J.] Collins [JBL 93 (1974), 50-66]. In a passage which has exercised considerable influence on subsequent scholarship, Schmidt notes the examples of expressions of the type 'one like a son of man' used in the Book of Daniel to designate angels. At 8.15 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+8%3A15&version=NRSV) Gabriel is described as 'like the appearance of a man'; at 8.16 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+8%3A16&version=NRSV) he has the 'voice of a man'; at 10.16 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+10%3A16&version=NRSV) he is described as 'like the resemblance of the sons of man'. at 10.18 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+10%3A18&version=NRSV) 'like the appearance of a man'; at 3.25 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+3%3A25&version=NRSV) one of the four 'men' is likened to a son of God; at 9.21 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+9%3A21&version=NRSV) the angel is referred to as 'the man Gabriel'; at 10.5 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+10%3A5&version=NRSV) he is 'a man clothed in linen' and likewise at 12.6 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+12%3A6&version=NRSV), 7 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+12%3A7&version=NRSV). Schmidt adds references to Rev. 19.14 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=rev+19%3A14&version=NRSV); Ezek 1.26 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ezek.+1.26&version=NRSV); Enoch 87.2., to show that the representation of angels in human form is comprehensible in the thought and usage of this period, and he deduces that the man-like figure in Daniel 7.13 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A13&version=NRSV) is an angel too.

John Reece
12-26-2014, 07:12 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


As applied to Daniel 7.13, this argument (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=137520&viewfull=1#post137520) is logically unsound. Let us first grant Schmidt's supposition that Daniel 7 was written by the same man as Daniel 8―12. From the fact that the author described angels in human terms, it does not follow that he could not describe anything else as 'man-like' as well. On this logical point Schmidt's argument collapses. It is even less improbable that a different author should use the same image for a piece of pure symbolism. That Michael is the heavenly prince of Israel in Daniel 10.21 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+10%3A21&version=NRSV); 12.1 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+12%3A1&version=NRSV) is to be granted, but it follows from the evidence of Daniel 7 itself that the author of Daniel 7 did not regard him as important enough to mention.

John Reece
12-27-2014, 09:24 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey:


Collins' argument (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=137520&viewfull=1#post137520) differs chiefly in that he regards the 'holy ones' in Daniel 7.18 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A18&version=NRSV), 22 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A22&version=NRSV) as the angels, though this leads him into some difficulty at 7.27 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A27&version=NRSV). This makes it more natural for him to interpret the man-like figure as their representative, but his argument is no real improvement on that of Schmidt. He repeats the references to Daniel 8.15 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+8%3A15&version=NRSV); 9.21 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+9%3A21&version=NRSV); 10.5 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+10%3A5&version=NRSV); 12.6 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+10%3A5&version=NRSV), and does not explain the absence of Michael in 7.27 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A27&version=NRSV).

John Reece
12-28-2014, 02:52 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


Zevitt has interpreted the man-like figure as Gabriel, but his argument suffers from the fatal flaw of being dependent on Schmidt to show that the man-like figure is an angel. His interpretation of Daniel 9.21 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+9%3A21&version=NRSV), 'the man Gabriel whom I saw in the vision at the beginning', as a reference to Daniel 7.13 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A13&version=NRSV) is based on a definition of 'vision' (חזון) remote from the book of Daniel. The reference is to Daniel 8.16 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+8%3A16&version=NRSV), where the appearance of the angel to Gabriel to interpret the symbolism is still part of the vision. It need hardly be added that Zevitt does not explain the absence of Gabriel from the interpretive section of Daniel 7.

From The Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament (HALOT), 2 volume set Hardcover – January 1, 2002, by Ludwig Koehler (Author), Walter Baumgartner (Author), & 1 more ... [emphases added]:


חָזוֹן MHb.2, JArm.t Syr. חֶזְוָנָא,? Mnd. ZAW 50:311: construct חֲזוֹן.

―1. vision; Johnson Prophet 12ff.35ff: with ראה Daniel 8.15, Daniel 8.1 , is frequent Hos 1211, rare 1S 31, is missing Pr 29.18 (:: Gemser 144: supervisor, MHb. חַזָּן), is taken away Mi 36 Ezk 1222 Lam 29; how long will it be? Daniel 8.13, in the distant future Ezk 1227 Hab 23 Daniel 8.17, Daniel 10.14; רָאָה בֶח׳ Daniel 8.2 (X 2), Daniel 9.21, הֵבִין בְּח׳ 117, ‏דִּבֶּר בְּח׳ Ps 8920 ‏דְּבַר כָּל־ח׳ the fulfilment Ezk 1223; ‏חֲ׳ לַילָה nocturnal vision Is 297; ‏ח׳ שָׁלוֹם visions of salvation Ezk 1316, ‏חֲ׳ שֶׁקֶר false visions Jr 1414, = ‏ח׳ שָׁוְא Ezk 1224, חֲ׳ לִבָּם Jr 2316; —2. word of revelation: in book titles Is 11 (with → חזה !) Ob 1 Nah 11, written Hab 22 2C 3232; kept secret חתם Daniel 9.24, ‏סתם Daniel 8.26; to fulfill ‏הֶעֱמִיד Daniel 11.14, ‏הקים Sir 3620; ‏בִּקֵּשׁ from the נָבִיא Ezk 726; 1C 1715; —Ezk 713 crrpt. < חָרוֹן (v.12b). †

Please correct me if I am wrong; however, I take it that Casey is saying that the book of Daniel is a literary composition produced entirely via human creative writing, historical references, etc., devoid of any true divine inspiration. I get that impression from reading all of Casey's writings on the subject of the Son of Man; that fits the well-known fact that he was an agnostic (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey).

John Reece
12-29-2014, 11:53 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


Black has used the biblical application of terms such as 'one like the appearance of a man' together with Feuillet's assertion of direct dependence on Ezek. 1 to support his belief that 'in effect . . . Daniel 7 knows of two divinities, the Head of Days and the Son of Man'. The author of Daniel 7 was a pious Jew, so that clear evidence would be required for us to suppose that he had produced a second divinity, but no purely divine terms are used of the man-like figure, and he is clearly subordinate to the Ancient of Days. Feuillet exaggerated the dependence on Ezekiel, partly because he still believed that the term 'Son of man' was an abnormal semi-poetic expression. The phrase 'like the appearance of a man' is suitable for comparing anything to a man, and the early biblical examples could not limit its potential in the work of any native speaker of Hebrew or Aramaic. Consequently the increasing quantity of non-biblical material has produced an example of its application to a phenomenon quite different from the numen praesens et visible of Yahweh theophany or an angelic theophany, namely the appearance of the moon at night (1 Enoch 78:17). Daniel 9.ff. (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A9-14&version=NRSV) really does contain a throne theophany of Yahweh in the old Israelite tradition found especially also in the book of Ezekiel, and it is a theophany of the one God, not of two; moreover the symbolic heavenly origin of the man-like figure may not be applied to produce the deification of the Saints because it symbolizes them but does not describe them.

John Reece
12-30-2014, 07:48 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


Apart from the anonymous Messiah, three human beings have been suggested as candidates for the man-like figure. Gaster suggested Moses. His unsatisfactory approach typifies all too many attempts to get behind the text of Daniel. He comments on verses 9-18 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A9-18&version=NRSV), 'It is absolutely incoherent and confused. In order to understand it properly, some order must be put into that confusion so characteristic of a dream told incoherently'. But the incoherence and confusion lie in the mind of the researcher who cannot understand the text, and the function of such remarks is to permit an arbitrariness in method whereby the scholar reads into or behind the text what he first expected to find there. His comment on verse 9 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A9&version=NRSV) is reminiscent of his ancient predecessors: 'Evidently the word thrones is not to be taken as plural'. Equally arbitrary is the comment on verse 14 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A14&version=NRSV): 'The glory of God, His might and power, is described in Daniel 7.14 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A14&version=NRSV), which has nothing to do with the Son of man, and should follow immediately after God sitting in judgement'. This is not interpretation of the Danielic text, but simple rejection of it. The identification of the man-like figure as Moses follows on the most general of grounds, its only particularity being the unconvincing assertion of direct dependence on Deut. 32.2-4 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=deut+32%3A2-4&version=NRSV). Gaster uses very late evidence to fill out his picture of Moses, without the careful discrimination which must be employed if such late material is to be handled convincingly, and his production of Moses on a cloud suffers from the same fault as more orthodox attempts to identify the figure by means of its cloud. Yet the late date of Gaster's evidence is a less fundamental fault than the way in which he distorts and in the last analysis brushes aside the evidence of the Danielic text which he is supposed to be interpreting.

John Reece
12-31-2014, 08:55 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


Sahlin has suggested that the man-like figure is Judas Maccabaeus. The fact that the author never mentions Judas Maccabaeus is a fatal objection to this view. Also the disappearance of this view is especially difficult to explain because it fits so beautifully into the Syrian tradition of interpretation, which saw the Maccabean victory under Judas as the meaning of the triumph of the Saints of the Most High, and could easily have seen Judas Maccabaeus as a type of Christ.

John Reece
01-01-2015, 12:06 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


Schmid has suggested that the man-like figure is none other then Daniel himself. Schmid's view is dependent on his redaction history of Daniel 7, which is similar to those discussed above, and unconvincing for the same reasons. It is precisely the removal of the interpretation of the man-like figure which makes its interpretation difficult. Schmid then seeks the source of the designation 'one like a son of man' in Daniel 8.17 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+8%3A17&version=WEB) where Daniel is addressed as 'son of man'. But this term is not a title nor an exclusive description of anyone, and the fact that it is applied to Daniel (probably by a later author, but that is a separate point) does not supply the identification of the person involved when the description is used elsewhere. It is a normal term for man, and the fact that Daniel, like Ezekiel before him, could be addressed by means of it is not inconsistent with the use of human symbolism in a different way in a separate chapter.

John Reece
01-02-2015, 08:03 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


The remaining identification of significance is that which regards the man-like figure as derived from widespread concepts of an Urmensch in the ancient Near East. This is important because if the author of Daniel knew a glorious individual figure, 'the Man' or 'the Son of man', it could be this figure which was known to later sources and referred to by Jesus himself, and this could be the case even if our author had used this individual figure as a symbol in Daniel 7 itself. The weakness of this view is that this 'Son of man' figure does not actually occur in any Jewish source. I shall argue that the present text of Daniel does not provide sufficient evidence of its existence in Israel. I shall argue similarly in the case of other texts as I deal with them, and draw the results of these discussions together at the end of chapter 5, where I shall argue that there was no Son of man concept in Judaism.

John Reece
01-03-2015, 10:03 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


How far this interpretive school (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=139722&viewfull=1#post139722) depended on it own inability to understand the Danielic text is evident in the seminal work of Gunkel, who used the incomprehensibility and un-Jewish nature of the man-like figure as a major argument for his conjecture that in the myth 'Son of man' was the title for the conqueror of God. But the outstanding difficulties listed by Gunkel have now all been solved, and the structure and symbolism of the chapter have become clear when it is seen against its native Jewish background. Thus the ground is removed from Gunkel's conjecture. Little enough evidence could in any case be drawn on in its favour. The number of genuine similarities between Daniel 7 and the Babylonian material, whether assessed in its original form or as it supposedly recurred in Israel, were too few to demonstrate dependence, and some of them, such as the use of רוח, are in themselves common use of material so widespread that its recurrence in independent works was inevitable.

John Reece
01-04-2015, 10:11 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


This same mythological background (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=140115&viewfull=1#post140115) was also utilized by Schmidt, who in suggesting that the man-like figure was Michael argued that his prototype was Marduk. Subsequent scholars have produced a series of different suggestions, which underlines the methodological inadequacy of their work. Beginning from an inability to understand the origin of the man-like figure in Daniel and the 'Son of man' in the Similitudes of Enoch, they have pointed out similarities to Daniel 7 in a variety of mythological sources in the ancient Near East. But a few similarities are not proof of origin, and the uncontrolled nature of the use of this evidence is decisively against all these views. In recent years Canaan has replace Babylon as the main source of influence to be suggested. This is instructive. The similarities with the Babylonian material are still there, but now appear as inadequate, which they always were. But the Canaanite arguments are of the same type, relying on a few similarities, and having to posit an Israelite conception different from that found in any source because existing Israelite sources do not have any concept sufficiently like that of the earlier myths. Moreover the assembling of an apparently imposing list of different myths as evidence of a widespread concept of an Urmensch used by Daniel is misleading; the need to assemble such a list of foreign material is really due to the absence of sufficiently clear evidence of the requisite kind anywhere.

John Reece
01-05-2015, 01:21 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


A few examples will suffice. C. H. Kraeling, beginning from the assumption that there was a Son of man concept in Judaism, argued that in order to demonstrate that the Anthropos constituted the origin of the Son of man he had to show (1) that the Jewish figure in question cannot be explained adequately as a product of Hebrew thought; (2) that it and the proposed foreign prototype are basically homogeneous; (3) that the suggested prototype was actually adaptable to the expression of those Jewish ideas which it served to convey in the new environment. The trouble here lies right at the beginning, where his assumption that there was a Jewish Son of man concept which cannot be explained adequately as a product of Hebrew thought rests on his inability to understand Daniel 7 and the Similitudes of Enoch. With the failure of (1) the foreign prototype becomes irrelevant. Then 'basically homogeneous' conceals so many differences that only his difficulties in understanding the Jewish documents themselves could make his second point plausible.

John Reece
01-06-2015, 11:03 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


Bentzen has suggested that Daniel 7 is an eschatologizing of Psalm 2 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Psalm+2&version=NRSV), which he thinks is derived from the enthronement ceremony celebrated at the New Year in Israel. There is some uncertainty as to whether there ever was an Israelite enthronement festival; there is no doubt that when Daniel was written no such ceremony had been celebrated in Israel for centuries. Daniel 7 has important contacts of thought with Psalm 2, but there is not sufficient evidence of the direct dependence that Bentzen seeks. On the contrary, there are important differences which he has to minimize. Above all Daniel 7 has no proper equivalent to the Anointed One in the Psalm: it is simply tendentious to claim that the man-like figure is his equivalent, when he is a symbol of the Saints and is not enthroned at all. Bentzen supposes that one of the thrones mentioned in verse 9 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A9&version=NRSV) is reserved for him, but this is not stated in Daniel and has to be assumed to make Daniel 7 more like its posited source.

John Reece
01-07-2015, 01:28 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


Bentzen's position (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=141080#post141080) has been further developed by J. A. Emerton. Here again failure to understand the Similitudes of Enoch and 4 Ezra 13 is important, for Emerton puts them together with Daniel 7 and Sib. Or. V, 414-33 to get the Son of man imagery whose origin he seeks. Emerton then assimilates 'the Son of man' to a divine figure. This is just what the man-like figure is not. The author of Daniel 7 was a traditionalist defending the ancient Israelite faith against against foreign encroachment; nothing he says leads one to the improbable notion that he chose a time of desperate persecution for his faith to introduce a second deity into the monotheistic faith of Israel. The clouds function as a means of transport for the man-like figure and symbolize the fact that Israel was the chosen people of God. That in the Old Testament that God comes with them is no excuse for turning another figure coming with them into a deity. God may be likened to a man in Ezek. 1.26 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=ezek+1%3A26&version=NRSV); that men are like men is more obvious, that angels are likened to men in Daniel and elsewhere is well-known, and that the author used a man as a pure symbol of the people of Israel is now comprehensible. Jebusite conjectures cannot be determinative for the views of a second-century conservative and Emerton's reliance on Canaanite evidence leads him to make a classic formulation of the faults of this line of this investigation. 'It is not explicitly stated that the Son of man kills the fourth beast, but the Canaanite parallels suggest that this occurred in the underlying myth.' This is to twist Daniel forcibly in a Canaanite direction. The fact is that in the Danielic text the man-like figure does not kill the fourth beast at all. The judgement is carried out by God alone, with the assistance of such assessors as may be. But the man-like figure does not come on stage until after the destruction of the fourth beast, so that he can symbolize the Israelite triumph. Canaanite parallels suggest otherwise because they are not sufficiently parallel; above all the pious Jew has not given us a second God.

John Reece
01-08-2015, 08:36 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


Mowinckel argues from the fact that 'with the clouds of heaven' is not interpreted that the author must have been using an existing mythological figure from which he got this item that he did not use. But from this it follows only that our author's interpretive style was not as rigid a Mowinckel imagines it should have been. The clouds perform an important symbolic function, associating the Saints of the Most High with God by providing their symbol with a heavenly origin, and they function as a means of transport. They are not interpreted simply because the author was not constructing a precise allegory. The origin of the beasts 'from the sea' is not interpreted, the peculiar features of the first three beasts are not interpreted, much of the symbolism of verses 9-10 is not interpreted either. This is not because the author could not understand his own symbolism, or took it over wholesale from a previous source. It is because he had sufficient literary and dramatic sense to construct a colourful dream to put forward his message. In the interpretation he concentrates on essentials. If the symbolic part of his dream were deprived of all features that do not appear in the interpretive part, it would be too feeble to form an effective piece of literature. That the author drew on previous sources for his imagery is true enough, but we should not assume he lacked creative originality by supposing that he must have drawn it wholesale in large units.

John Reece
01-09-2015, 12:17 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


The mythological interpretation of the man-like figure is therefore (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=141675&viewfull=1#post141675) to be rejected. Beginning from an inability to interpret Jewish texts against a background of Jewish thought, it has utilized weak similarities in order to assert dependence on foreign material so alien as to necessitate frequent assumptions that the Danielic and other texts must once have meant something other than what they mean in their surviving form. These assumptions have not been justified.

John Reece
01-10-2015, 08:01 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


One of the most important recent theories about the man-like figure is that in some real sense he suffers. This theory arises from the Son of man problem in the New Testament, and its application to the text of Daniel is forced and unconvincing. It appears to have been broached first by C. F. D. Moule. He argues that in Daniel 7, as it now stands, 'the saints are symbolized by the Human One―not identified with, but represented by him: and if the saints are partially and temporarily eclipsed, only to be subsequently glorified, then exactly the same may be presumed to be appropriately predicated of the Human Figure'. It may not be presumed at all. It is nowhere stated, and it is inconsistent with his choice of a man as a symbol of triumph. The author could easily have said it in further extension at verse 8 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A8&version=NRSV), which he could have had instead of the present insertion at verses 21-2 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A21-22&version=NRSV). He did not do so, both for dramatic effect and because he in fact chose his man symbol as a symbol to portray Israel's triumph. 'If so, then the "Son of Man" already means "the representative of God's chosen people, destined through suffering to be exalted".' There are two further reasons why it does not: one is that the man-like figure is a pure symbol, so that the term 'representative' conceals an important difference between this figure and what Moule regards as the 'Son of man' in the Gospels. The second is that 'the Son of man' does not occur in Daniel at all: כבר אנשׁ is a figure like a son of man.

John Reece
01-11-2015, 10:35 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


Moule's position (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=142576&viewfull=1#post142576) has been further developed by M. D. Hooker. Hooker realizes that the author 'may well have felt that the human figure was an inappropriate symbol for the people of Israel during their tribulation', but she nevertheless continues 'but the Son of man clearly represents in some way the saints of the Most High, and there can be no doubt at all that they suffered'. They did; but when the author meant this he said it, as in verse 21 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A21&version=WEB). She goes on 'unless we detach him from them and regard him as a separate figure with independent experiences we cannot dissociate him from what happens to them'. But it is not that the man-like figure has independent experiences; he is a pure symbol with no experiences at all, other than the symbolic ones in verses 13-14 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A13-14&version=WEB). To that extent he is a separate figure and he is to be disassociated from the suffering of the Saints. The author's hope of deliverance by God was not 'based on the fact that Israel is already the Son of man'. It was based on his faith in a reliable God who would deliver his people. Our author did not believe that Israel is, was, or would be 'the Son of man'; he simply chose a man-like figure to symbolize Israel in triumph. We should not suppose that he believed Israel was 'the Son of man' because that is not what he says; and he does not say that 'the Son of man', or the man-like figure, suffers either.

John Reece
01-12-2015, 11:51 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


The conclusions of this discussion may now be summarized. The man-like figure is a pure symbol of the 'Saints of the Most High', the faithful people of Israel. In choosing this symbol of them our author used old and simple Jewish ideas. He chose it to represent them coming in triumph, so that they are not mentioned as suffering under the little horn until the man-like figure has been interpreted as the Saints of the Most High. His coming in triumph to be given sovereignty by God symbolizes the forthcoming triumph of the Jews over Antiochus Epiphanes and the Macedonians, a triumph which was to be achieved by means of divine intervention.

John Reece
01-13-2015, 01:37 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


An interpreting angel now appears in Daniel's dream. He undertakes to provide the interpretation of what Daniel has seen, and goes straight into the summary interpretation of verses 17-18, where he says that the four beasts represents four kings who will arise from the earth. This is simply a way of saying that they represent the four kingdoms. The king represented his kingdom in a very straightforward way, and Daniel's interpreters often identify the beasts either as kingdoms or by means of their most outstanding kings, evidently regarding both as symbolically interchangeable. The main function of this summary interpretation is to identify the man-like figure as the Saints of the Most High, so that Daniel can see them suffer under the little horn before a fuller interpretation is suppled. Most interpreters have supposed that the Saints of the Most High are the Jewish people, but in recent years their identification has been a subject of considerable debate, and the opinion has been growing that they are in fact angels. Stated by Procksh, this view has been properly developed by Noth and Dequeker, and refuted by Brekelmans and Hasel. One of the most significant statements of the evidence is that of Dequeker, who in his second attempt to advocate the view that the 'Saints' are angels has to admit 'Reading the verses 21 and 25 for themselves, without taking into account the Redaktionsgeschichte of the chapter, one comes necessarily to the conclusion that "the Saints" must be understood as the faithful Jewish people, persecuted by Antiochus Epiphanes'. Quite so, and Noth had already admitted as much. This is important, because it means that even if Noth and Dequeker are right, the interpretation of the Saints as the Jews was held in 166-165 B.C., and this supplies a terminus a quo for the corporate interpretation of the man-like figure as a symbol of the Jewish people. It is also an admission which undermines much of their argument.

John Reece
01-14-2015, 02:31 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


The fundamental statement is that of 7.27 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A27&version=WEB). It is the author's longest and most explicit statement of the triumph of the Saints, and here he calls them 'the people of the Saints of the Most High'. The use of the term עַם, 'people', enables us to deduce that this is the Jewish people in triumph. Noth argued that עם here means 'host', and sought to justify this by appealing to 1QH III, 21. In that passage, however, we must follow most scholars (including Dequeker) in interpreting עם as עִם, 'with'. This makes excellent sense, saying that the psalmist will be united in community with the angels. עַם is never employed either at Qumran or in the O.T. with reference to angels or celestial beings. In Daniel 7.27 it should be taken in a straight forward way as a reference to the Jewish people. The triumph of 'the people of the Saints of the Most High' in verse 27 is clearly the same event as the triumph of 'the Saints of the Most High' in verses 18 and 22, and of 'the Saints' in verse 22. Therefore these phrases also refer to the Jewish people. Therefore the expression עם קדישׁי עליונין in verse 27 begins with a use of the construct state equivalent to an epexegetical genitive and it may be rendered (over literally, to bring out the construction and meaning) 'the people which consists of the Saints of Most High'.

From The Apocalyptic Imagination: An Introduction to Jewish Apocalyptic Literature (Eerdmans, 1984, 1998), by John J. Collins (page 106):


The link between the holy ones and the Jewish people is clarified in Daniel 7:27, which says that "the kingdom and the dominion of the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven shall be given to the people of the holy ones of the Most High." The genitival relationship of the people to the holy ones is analogous to that of the holy ones to the Most High.* Daniel 7:27 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A27&version=NRSV) compliments 7:18 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A18&version=NRSV), where the holy ones receive the kingdom. In view of the homology between the holy ones, a kingdom that is given to one is given to the other.

The interpretation of the holy ones as angels fits naturally with the identification of the one like a son of man as Michael, the leader of the heavenly host. The relation between this figure and the holy ones, then is not identity but representation. ....

....

Daniel 7 does not mention Michael by name, as indeed it does not mention any proper names. The suppression of proper names lends an air of mystery to the whole vision. The specific identification of the one like a son of man is not of ultimate importance. What matters is that there is a heavenly savior figure who represents the righteous community on the supernatural level. This figure is specified in various ways in different texts. Michael is named explicitly in Daniel 10―12 and 1QM. Melchizedek in 11QMelch, "that son of man" in the Similitudes of Enoch, the man from the sea in 4 Ezra 13, and the Son of Man in the New Testament all fill this function with varying nuances. Apocalyptic thought allows for considerable fluidity in its mythological conceptions. Although there is now general agreement that the Son of Man was not a title in pre-Christian Judaism, the mysterious figure in Daniel represents a type that is widespread in the apocalyptic literature.

....


*Contra Casey, who takes it as "the people consisting of the holy ones" (Son of Man, 41).

John Reece
01-15-2015, 10:27 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


This (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=144258#post144258) makes excellent sense of all of the author's statements about the Saints of the Most High. The summary interpretation of verses 17-18 provides a summary statement of their triumph. At verse 21 Daniel sees the little horn making war on the Saints. Antiochus' persecution of and war against the Jewish people called forth the Book of Daniel, so that prominent mention of the war is natural. Verse 22 has the controversial statement


ודינא יהיב לקדישׁי עליונין

Most scholars have argued that it means that judgement was given in favour of the Saints of the Most High, but some have suggested that it means that judgement was given into the hands of the Saints of the Most High, that is, they became the judges.. Both are sound in Aramaic, and there is not justification for emending the text. LXX and Theodotion both imply יְהַב, but none of the versions helps with the point in dispute. Parallels are adduced from Wisd. 3.8; Matt. 19.28; 1 Cor. 6.2; Rev. 20.4: the first especially suggests what our author might have believed, but none tells us what he in fact meant, for this must be extracted from the text of Daniel, which is decisively in favour of the first possibility. That judgement was entered in favour of the man-like figure is presupposed by the symbolism of verses 13-14. That judgement was given in favour of the Saints is presupposed in their triumph in verses 18 and 27. The same cannot be said of the other view. In the symbolic account, God judges with the assistance of his angelic court. The man-like figure does not judge at all. In the interpretive comments, there is no suggestion of the Saints becoming the judges in verse 18, which might be dismissed as too short for that purpose, or in verses 26-7, where its absence would be remarkable. Moreover, the destruction is the result of a judgement that must be given before the destruction can take place. The Saints of the Most High would be in no position to be judges until they had been delivered.

The next statement about the Saints is at 7.25,


ולקדישׁי עליונין יבלא

'and he will wear out the Saints of the Most High'. This is the interpretation of verse 21, so that some reference to Antiochus' activity against the Jewish people is required, and comparative philology provides an appropriate sense for יבלא. Brekelmans pointed out that the Akkadian balu/belu is used in the intensive of destroying people, and Hasel notes the similar use of the Hebrew בלה. Noth's objection that יבלא in the sense of 'wear out, destroy' should should not have a personal object is therefore inaccurate. Antiochus offended God and attacked the people of God, so that the parallelism here is perfectly sound and may not be held to favour the view that the Saints are angels. It is difficult to be certain whether this verse concludes with another statement about the Saints, because the subject of 'and they shall be given' is problematical. Is it the Saints of the Most High from verse 25a, or is it the previous words 'times and the Law'? On balance, it is perhaps better to take the Saints as the subject, on the ground that this makes the more straightforward sense. The whole verse now makes excellent sense in accordance with the view that the Saints of the Most High are the Jewish people. To interpret them as the angels not only creates difficulties at this level, but also involves the omission of the suffering of the Jewish people under Antiochus from the main interpretive section of the dream. On general grounds, that is not a probable result; when the text can be interpreted of them so easily, it is willful to do otherwise.

It should be noted that קדישׁי עליונין is linguistically ambiguous as to whether it means "the Saints of the Most High (i.e., people), or "the Holy Ones of the Most High" (i.e. angels). That fact should be borne in mind as one reads Casey's thesis and compares it with comments by scholars such as John J. Collins. More will be presented in that regard as the thread continues.

John Reece
01-16-2015, 11:30 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


There is no statement about the Saints in verse 26 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A26&version=NRSV), but this verse is directly relevant because it deals with the heavenly court. From the opening words 'and the court sat' it is clear that the court really exists and is not merely symbolism in verse 10 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A10&version=NRSV). The collocation of verses 26 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A26&version=NRSV) and 27 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A27&version=NRSV) makes it clear that the Saints benefit from the decision, and do not constitute the court. If the Saints are the Jewish people, this is straightforward. The court are the reason for the plural number of יהדעון, 'and they shall take away'. The destruction of the power of Antiochus for ever necessarily accomplishes the demise of the whole fourth kingdom, and the triumph of the people of the Saints of the Most High follows in verse 27 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A27&version=NRSV). The suffix in מלכותה picks up the last mentioned singular עם so that we would translate 'their kingdom is an everlasting kingdom', and the remainder of the verse accurately portrays the situation symbolized in verse 14 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A14&version=NRSV) in much the same language. Dequeker asserts that it refers to the Most High, but his assertion is accompanied by more dogma than argument. Daniel 3.33 [= 4:3 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+4%3A3&version=NRSV) in English versions]; Psa. 145.13 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=psa+145%3A13&version=NRSV) do not count against the usual view; it should be clear enough that the sovereignty which the Saints receive remains the sovereignty of God when they have received it, and it was celebrated elsewhere as such. To assert that פלח in Daniel refers only to the gods is arbitrary and of unsound method. The Aramaic word פלח has a semantic range which includes service to human beings (necessarily of unusually exalted status). To say that an author uses only part of a word's semantic area x times is not to demonstrate that he could not use the rest of it too (especially when x has a low value, here no more than 6). The evidence of the text before us is that Daniel used it of service to human beings in verse 27 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A27&version=NRSV), and symbolized this by his use of it in the case of a pure symbol in verse 14 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A14&version=NRSV). But the basic trouble with Dequeker's view is his failure to understand the man-like figure in verse 13 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A13&version=NRSV).

John Reece
01-17-2015, 09:30 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


It is therefore to be concluded that all statements about the 'Saints', 'the Saints of the Most High' and 'the people of the Saints of the Most High' in Daniel 7 make excellent sense on the traditional view that they are the Jewish people. Some of them do not make sense in any other view, and the theories of redaction history on which these other views depended have been shown to be unsound. The view that the 'Saints' are the Jewish people is therefore correct. It fits well with the evidence of the rest of the book, and with the general cultural background. A corresponding dream and interpretation, form the hand of the same author, is to be found in Daniel 2. God will set up his kingdom, 'and his kingdom will never pass to another people' (2.44 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+2%3A44&version=NRSV)) because the Jewish people, the chosen people of God, have got it forever. There is not mention of angels at all. Daniel 8.24 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+8%3A24&version=NRSV) is difficult because of textual uncertainty, but at least it is clear that Antiochus will be persecuting 'the people of the Saints', that is again, the Jewish people. The parallelism of the dream and the interpret ion cannot require that the people of the Saints are the host and the stars in the dream, though they may indeed be symbolized by them. Chapter 12 supports the same picture: it is the Jewish people who will be delivered in 12.1 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+12%3A1&version=NRSV), 'the holy people' as they are called in 12.7 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+12%3A7&version=NRSV).

The following comment on pages 104-105 of The Apocalyptic Imagination: An Introduction to Jewish Apocalyptic Literature, Second Edition (Eerdmans, 1998), by John J. Collins, applies to the above as well as the next several paragraphs by Casey:


.... The expression "holy ones," used substantively, in the Hebrew Bible refers to angels or supernatural beings in the great majority of cases. ....

Although the philological evidence is not conclusive, it must be held to create a balance of probability. The probability is strengthened by the fact that the unambiguous occurrences in the book of Daniel itself (4:10, 14, 20; 8:13)* refer to angels, and the "holy ones," in 1 Enoch 14:22-23, a passage closely related to Daniel 7, are all clearly angelic.

Objections to taking the holy ones as angels have been raised mainly on the basis of Daniel 7:21 ("the horn made war on the holy ones and prevailed on them") and 7:25 ("He shall speak words against the Most High, and shall wear out the holy ones of the Most High"). It is not, of course, disputed that the experiential datum that give rise to these assertions is the persecution of the Jews by Antiochus. The issue, again, is how that conflict is conceptualized and symbolized. We have seen that the battle between angelic forces is explicit in Daniel 10―12. In 11:26 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+11%3A36&version=NRSV) we read that Antiochus will exalt and magnify himself above every god and "speak astonishing things against the God of gods." In a parallel passage in 8:10 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+8%3A10&version=NRSV), the little horn "grew great, even to the host of heaven; and some of the stars it cast down to the ground and trampled on them." Here the horn quite explicitly fights with the heavenly host. The stars, which are cast to the ground, were commonly identified with angels or gods both in Israel and elsewhere in the ancient Near East. In the light of this passage the objection to the angelic interpretation in 7:21 and 25 cannot be sustained.


*The expression "holy people" (ʿam-qōḏeš [עַם־קֹדֶשׁ in] 12:7) cannot be regarded as an equivalent linguistic expression to "holy ones" (contra Casey, Son of Man, 44-45).

John Reece
01-18-2015, 08:54 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):

Remember the note at the bottom of this post (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=144559&viewfull=1#post144559) as you read Casey's comment below and elsewhere.


This evidence is completely consistent. Only the terminology, 'Saints', 'Saints of the Most High', 'people of the Saints of the Most High', 'people of the Saints', 'holy people', is variable, and no one has yet given any satisfactory reason for thinking that the author should have been consistent. Nor should the terminology be regarded as surprising. The Jews had regarded themselves as a holy people for a very long time. The Hebrew language always permitted but never demanded that this be expressed by means of a nominal adjective קדושׁים in isolation. This certainly occurs, used of the pious, in Psa. 34.10. Some of them certainly termed themselves 'holy ones' in this intertestimental period, as event Dequeker says. Even Noth and Dequeker think that קדישׁין was so understood by the Maccabean redactor of Daniel 7. This is sufficient to undermine any argument that קדישׁין on its own ought to be understood of angels rather than men. Yet the main thrust of the argument has been towards showing that קדישׁין on its own could denote 'angels'. Certainly it could; it has next to be shown that it actually did in this chapter. Perhaps the most remarkable feature of that version of Daniel 7 which emerges from the work of Noth and Dequeker is that the Jewish people are left out of it altogether. This has suited some Gentile scholars, but it was hardly the purpose of a Jewish writer, nor is it a likely outcome of the use of 'opposition history'.

From John J. Collins (op. cit.);


We should emphasize that the interpretation of the holy ones as the angelic host (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=145521&viewfull=1#post145521) does not in any case exclude reference to the persecuted Jews. Scholars who reject this interpretation have failed to grasp the nature of the homology between the heavenly and earthly worlds in ancient Near Eastern thought. In modern thinking we assume the priority of human experience and see the mythological world of the gods as a projection. In the ancient world, in contrast, the priority of the world of the gods is assumed, and earthly affairs are regarded as reflections of the greater reality. This homology is quite explicit in Daniel 10, where the struggle between Jews and Greeks is viewed as a battle between their angelic patrons. The link between the holy ones and the Jewish people is clarified in Daniel 7:27, which says that "the kingdom and the dominion and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven shall be given to the people of the holy ones of the Most High." The genitival relationship of the people of the holy ones is analogous to that of the holy ones of the Most High. Daniel 7:27 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A27&version=NRSV) complements 7:18 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A18&version=NRSV), where the holy ones receive the kingdom. In view of the homology between the people and the holy ones, a kingdom that is given to one is given to both.

John Reece
01-19-2015, 01:01 PM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


The general background material has finally been straightened out by Hasel. He concludes his survey of it: 'From the traditio-historical perspective the dual attribution of holiness to beings in the celestial and terrestrial realms not only antedates the usage of adjectives derived from the root q d s in the book of Daniel but also reflected in later extra-canonical Jewish literature of the pre-Christian era'. Noth's attempt to limit reconsideration of the evidence to the substantival use of the adjective is linguistically absurd and generally of unsound method. Any attempt to set up a general presumption on favour of 'the holy ones' being angels is therefore unsound. The decision as to whether they are angelic or human beings must therefore be made on the basis of the evidence of Daniel 7 alone, and we have seen that this demonstrates decisively that the reference is to the Jewish people.

From John J. Collins, op. cit.:


The link between the holy ones and the Jewish people is clarified in Daniel 7:27, which says that "the kingdom and the dominion and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven shall be given to the people of the holy ones of the Most High. The genitival relationship of the people of the holy ones is analogous to that of the holy ones of the Most High.* Daniel 7:27 complements 7:18, where the holy ones receive the kingdom. In view of the homology between the people and the holy ones, a kingdom that is given to one is given to both.


*Contra Casey, who takes it as "the people consisting of the holy ones" (Son of Man, p. 41). Note, however, the interpretation of Goldingay, Daniel, 143, 146, who takes the phrase as "the holy ones on high."

John Reece
01-20-2015, 09:12 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


It would be useful to determine what kind of triumph the author had in mind. Did he expect the Jews to win a military victory? There is no mention of it in the interpretation of this chapter. The parallel 2.44 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+2%3A44&version=NRSV) is not explicit. On the one hand God is very clearly the subject of the statement 'the God of heaven will raise up a kingdom which will last for ever'; on the other hand this need not preclude a military victory as the means by which he did so, and this might be suggested by 'it will shatter and destroy all those kingdoms', a statement of which this new kingdom appears to be the subject. 8.25 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+8%3A25&version=NRSV) produces a purely supernatural intervention to bring about the end of Antiochus, an event which in this context clearly involves the deliverance of Israel. 12.1-3 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+12%3A1-3&version=NRSV) similarly envisages the deliverance of Israel, and this deliverance certainly includes supernatural intervention, though the possibility of military action by earthly or heavenly hosts, or both, cannot be ruled out. In view of these factors, we may conclude that the author of Daniel 7 appears to have envisaged deliverance by supernatural means. It is to be noted, however, that the military view, which will therefore have to come into being after the Maccabean victory, does not directly contradict anything in Daniel 2 or 7, and the difficulties which it ran into at 12.1-3 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+12%3A1-3&version=NRSV) are chiefly due to its assumption that this record of the Maccabean triumph only, rather that to any direct contradiction between these verses and the notion that a military victory was involved as well.

From The Apocalyptic Imagination: An Introduction to Jewish Apocalyptic Literature (Eerdmans, 1984, 1998), by John J. Collins (page 106):


The interpretation of the holy ones as angels fits naturally with the identification of the one like a son of man as Michael, leader of the heavenly host. The relation between this figure and the holy ones, then, is not identity, but representation. The three formulations of Daniel 7:14 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A14&version=NRSV), 18 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A18&version=NRSV), and 27 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A27&version=NRSV), in which the one like a son of man, the holy ones of the Most High, and the people of the holy ones are said in turn to receive the kingdom, represent three levels of a multidimensional reality. A closely similar conception is found in the Qumran War Scroll, where God "will raise up the kingdom of Michael in the midst of the gods, and the realm of Israel in the midst of all flesh" (1QM 17:6-8).

Daniel 7 does not mention Michael by name, as it does not mention any proper names. The suppression of proper names lends an air of mystery to the whole vision. The specific identification of the one like a son of man is not of ultimate importance. What matters is that there is a heavenly saviour figure who represents the righteous community on a supernatural level. This figure is specified in various ways in different texts. Michael is named explicitly in Daniel 10―12 and 1QM. Melchizedek in 11QMelch, "that son of man" in the Similitudes of Enoch, the man from the sea in 4 Ezra 13, and the Son of Man in the New Testament all fill this function with varying nuances. Apocalyptic thought allows for considerable fluidity in it mythological conceptions. Although there is now general agreement that Son of Man was not a title in pre-Christian Judaism, the mysterious figure in Daniel represents a type that is widespread in apocalyptic literature.

John Reece
01-21-2015, 07:28 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


The climax of the chapter, then, comes with the destruction of Antiochus Epiphanes and the triumph of the Jews by means of supernatural intervention. Not only will their kingdom be eternal, but all other nations will serve and obey them. There is no mention of the resurrection of the dead, an idea which does not occur in the book until chapter 12. If the author believed in it, this is rather surprising. It is therefore probable that, if we are right in supposing that 8―12 were written by a different author, the reason why it is not mentioned in chapter 7 is that its author did not believe in it. The idea of a personal resurrection was developing and gaining wider acceptance at this period, so that there is nothing intrinsically improbable about the view, though it may be felt to fall short of certainty. Probably, then, the author's idea of the Jewish triumph is that after the supernatural intervention the Jewish people will continue to live and die in their kingdom which God had established. The important unit which triumphs is thus the nation, which is delivered and survives forever, rather than the individual rising from the dead. This fits well with 'the opposition history' from which the author derived the sequence of four kingdoms and a fifth. It utilizes ancient Israelite ideas of Israel as the people of God. That God will care for his people and look after them, delivering them in time of distress, is writ large over the whole O.T. When the historical context is borne in mind, it is not fanciful to mention also the idea of the righteous remnant. Many in Israel had apostatized, and it was the pious who were left. The author does not explicitly refer to this, but it may lie behind his description of the triumphant group as 'Saints'. It is God's holy ones who have been faithful to him who will be delivered; these are the true Israel, to be described as 'the people of the Saints of the Most High'. The ideas of 'opposition history' have been brought into the framework of traditional Israelite ideas. These traditional ideas constitute the framework and the essence of the author's message.

John Reece
01-22-2015, 09:44 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


With the identification of the Saints of the Most High established and the forthcoming Jewish triumph clarified, we can now deal with some of the details of the interpretive section of the dream. The description of the fourth beast in Daniel's question says of the little horn 'and its appearance was bigger than that of its companions' (verse 20 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A20&version=NRSV)). This is not inconsistent with the evidence of 7.8 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A8&version=NRSV). Like the little horn of 8.9f. (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+8%3A9-10&version=NRSV), this little horn came up and up and up, and 7.20 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A20&version=NRSV) tells us that it finally became the biggest of all. The symbolism is natural and unforced. Some would prefer the author to have said it all at 7.8 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A8&version=NRSV), but it is intelligible that he should have sought after dramatic effect by leaving something for his second lengthy description of the fourth beast and its little horn.

John Reece
01-23-2015, 06:29 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


Verses 23-7 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A23-27&version=NRSV) give the detailed angelic interpretation. An outline has already been supplied in 17-18 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A17-18&version=NRSV), and in response to the dreamer's desire the angel can now concentrate on the fourth beast. Its identification is not specific, but will have escaped no one. The ten horns are identified as kings, and then a more prolonged account of the little horn is given. Again there is no direct identification, possibly because our author's group saw the events of their time in old prophecies which they had to reinterpret for that purpose (e.g. Daniel 9 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+9&version=NRSV), cf. e.g. 1QpHab). Seen like this the old prophecies were imprecise,and it may be this that our author was imitating.

John Reece
01-24-2015, 06:47 AM
Continuation of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


Verse 28 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A28&version=NRSV) forms the concluding narrative framework. This time Daniel really has woken up. The concluding phrase is still in the first person and is no doubt intended deliberately as part of Daniel's account referred to say in verse 1. (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A1&version=NRSV)

John Reece
01-25-2015, 07:56 AM
Conclusion of Chapter 2, titled 'Daniel 7', in Son of Man: The Interpretation and Influence of Daniel 7, by Maurice Casey (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Casey):


This concludes our study of Daniel 7 in itself. It has emerged as a thoroughly Jewish chapter in a thoroughly Jewish book. When its Jewish basis, principles, and beliefs are taken for granted, its symbolism becomes clear and its structure for the first time genuinely intelligible as the work of a single author. It contains no 'Son of man concept', and its man-like figure does not suffer. An understanding of its symbolism and structure has removed all ground for supposing that the author ever knew a Son of man concept. Finally we have been able to see how this chapter was interpreted in 166-163 B.C. This provides a terminus a quo for correct interpretations. When they recur in late sources, the terminus ad quem thus provided will enable us to argue that these interpretations were in existence at the time of Jesus.

This is a good place for me bring an end to my transcription of Casey's thesis, as he has just summed it up in brief above. If anyone is interested in giving it further consideration, Casey's updated version of his thesis is available in print in the #3 book listed in the OP. (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=110511&viewfull=1#post110511)

I will end this thread with two comments by scholars whose quotations below are relevant to Casey's thesis.

From pages 154-155 of Cosmology and Eschatology in Jewish and Christian Apocalypticism (Leiden: Brill), by Adela Yarbro Collins (http://divinity.yale.edu/collins-0) [brackets added]:


A number of scholars [including Casey, per footnote] have argued that, during and prior to Jesus' lifetime, "Son of Man" was not a title in Jewish circles and that there was no widespread expectation of the coming of a heavenly being called Son of Man. This argument is dubious.

It is well known that the community at Qumran and at least some early Christians believed that the scriptures were written for their benefit and prophesied events which they were experiencing and other events which they expected to occur in the near future. E. P. Sanders has recently restated, in a cogent way, the case for viewing Jesus as an eschatological prophet. If one accepts this case in general outline, it is likely that Jesus understood the Book of Daniel to refer to his own time and to the near future. He need not have been a scribe or a professional interpreter of scripture to have known the major characters and basic content of the text.

If we conclude that Jesus alluded to Daniel 7:13 in his teaching, the shift from the indefinite or generic use of the phrase "son of man" to its definite or quasi-titular use is explained. In Daniel 7:13, the phrase is used generically. The seer speaks of one "like a son of man," meaning one "in the form of a man" or "one with the appearance of a man." the noun אנשׁ, the second noun, is indefinite. Therefore, the whole phrase in the Aramaic text is indefinite. In order to refer to that figure, Jesus probably used a definite form as a way of referring to the figure known on the basis of that text. A similar phenomenon is evident in a text roughly contemporary with Jesus, the Similitudes of Enoch (1 Enoch, 37-71). There a heavenly figure similar to the one in Daniel 7 is called "that Son of Man," presumably in reference to the older text which was already known to the audience.

If Jesus had already associated his activity and teaching with the heavenly figure in Daniel 7:13, it is more understandable that some of his followers would have identified the two after Jesus' death.

From The Apocalyptic Imagination: An Introduction to Jewish Apocalyptic Literature (Eerdmans, 1984, 1998), by John J. Collins (http://divinity.yale.edu/collins-1) (pages 107-108):


Daniel 7 does not stand alone. Its picture of the Antiochan crisis is complemented by three parallel revelations that go over the same event in slightly different ways. ....

In fact, the juxtaposition of the complementary revelations is a typical feature of apocalyptic literature. It can be seen in the Similitudes of Enoch, 4 Ezra, and 2 Baruch. An elaborate example is found in the book of Revelation. In none of these cases can the multiplicity of revelatory units be taken as evidence of multiplicity of authorship. Repetition of a structural pattern with variations of specific detail is a basic means of communication, well attested in myth and folklore as well as in modern communication theory. The English anthropologist Edmond Leach has explained this phenomenon by the analogy of electronic communications. If a message has to be communicated in the face of distractions or "noise," the communicator must use "redundance" by repeating the message several times in slightly different ways. In this way the basic structure of the message gets through. This use of redundance is crucially important to our understanding of apocalyptic language. It implies that the apocalypses are not conveying a "literal" or univocal truth that can be expressed precisely in one exclusive way. Rather, they share the poetic nature of myth and allude symbolically to a fullness of meaning that can never be reduced to literalness.

Please do not neglect to click on the links behind the names of Adela and John Collins to see their qualifications and experience as scholars. See (and hear) especially the link within the link behind John's name; i.e. re the Dead Sea Scrolls: that is, the second inner link (the first one is dead, or was so when I clicked on it). In an interview, contained within that second inner link, Collins is especially interesting in his comments re the Catholic Church, his relationship with it, and his attitude toward it.

I do not expect to have anything further to add in this thread, except by way of response to others who may contribute to it.

John Reece
02-06-2015, 10:54 AM
Contrary to my last statement in this thread (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?4018-Son-of-Man&p=149007&viewfull=1#post149007), I wish to add another relevant comment by John J. Collins (http://divinity.yale.edu/collins-1), this from his book, The Scepter and the Star: The Messiahs of the Dead Sea Scrolls and other Ancient Literature (The Anchor Bible Reference Library: Doubleday, 1995), pages 37-38:


.... The only savior figure, under God, in the book of Daniel, is the archangel Michael, the "prince" (שׂר) of Israel (Dan 12:1 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+12%3A1&version=ESV)). The kingdom that is given to the "one like a son of man" in 7:13 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A13&version=ESV) is also given to the "holy ones of the Most High" (7:18 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A18&version=ESV)). The holy ones, in the vast majority of instances in ancient Hebrew and Aramaic literature, are the heavenly host. I have argued at length elsewhere that "the one like a son of man" is not a collective symbol for Israel, as many scholars [including Maurice Casey -JR] hold, but should be identified as Michael, the leader of the heavenly host. Even though Daniel anticipates that "the kingdom and dominion and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven shall be given to the people of the holy ones of the Most High" (7:27 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+7%3A27&version=ESV)), there is no unambiguous reference in the book to a restored Davidic king. The nature of the earthly kingdom remains vague. Daniel, like the early [i]Enoch apocalypses, looks beyond this world to the triumph of Michael and the holy ones, and ultimately to the resurrection and exaltation of the righteous (Dan 12:1-3 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+12%3A1-3&version=ESV)). There is no reason, then, to call the future kingdom messianic.

Rather than messianic expectation, then, what we have in Daniel is a transformation of the royal mythology. The Maccabees are, at most "a little help" (Dan. 11:34 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+11%3A34&version=ESV)). There is a deliverer under God, but he operates on the heavenly level: the fate of Israel is determined by the battle between Michael and the princes of Greece and Persia (Dan 10:21-21 (https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=dan+10%3A20-21&version=ESV)). This kind of transcendent, heavenly deliverer plays an increasingly important role in Jewish eschatology in the following centuries. It also provides a paradigm for messianic expectation that is quite different from the Davidic paradigm, although the two are sometimes combined. In this paradigm the "messiah" is a heavenly figure, more like an angel than a human being. This paradigm is developed in the Similitudes of Enoch and in the apocalypse of 4 Ezra in the first century. It is a paradigm that would be crucially important for the Christian affirmation of Jesus as messiah, despite his evident failure to restore the earthly kingdom of Israel.

John Reece
02-10-2015, 10:40 AM
Another unanticipated random comment comes to mind with regard to this thread.

By far the best scholarly commentary on the Book of Daniel is that by John J. Collins (http://divinity.yale.edu/collins-1), in the Hermeneia series published in 1993 by Augsburg Fortress.

It is not immediately obvious that, although John J. is presented as the author, the book is really the product of a matchless team: Adela and John Collins. Excerpts from the Preface:


This volume is the fruit of more than two decades of research on the Book of Daniel. Much of the commentary was written in 1987-1988, with the aid of a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and sabbatical leave from the University of Notre Dame, for which we are grateful. .... The volume is dedicated to our former colleagues at Notre Dame, where most of the work on this commentary was done, with fond memories of the community we enjoyed.

January 1993

Adela Yarbro Collins
John J. Collins
Chicago, Illinois

John J. Collins (http://divinity.yale.edu/collins-1) is Holmes Professor of Old Testament Criticism and Interpretation at Yale.
Adela Yarbro Collins (http://divinity.yale.edu/collins-0) is Buckingham Professor of New Testament Criticism and Interpretation at Yale.

They are a remarkable team of scholars covering both the OT and the NT.

In the Hermeneia commentary on Daniel, of which John is the primary author, Adela authored a section titled "The Influence of Daniel on the New Testament" which has this introduction:


The most conspicuous and important influence of Daniel on the New Testament lies in the role of Dan. 7:13 in the development and transmission of the "Son of Man" tradition. Although this is a disputed issue, it is probable that Dan. 7:13 was a formative influence on this tradition. The Book of Daniel as a whole, especially chapters 7―12, served as one of several models for the author of Revelation in shaping that work's form and content. A number of terms, notions, themes, and motifs throughout the New Testament also manifest the influence of Daniel.

Following that introduction, Adela presents three sections, the first being titled "The Son of Man Tradition", which begins with this paragraph:


The reconstruction of the Son of Man tradition has been one of the most controversial topics in New Testament studies in this century. As noted above in the treatment of the Son of Man in the history of the Jewish interpretation of Daniel, one of the major issues has been whether there was a concept of the "Son of Man" in ancient Judaism independent of the Book of Daniel. In the first half of this century, it was widely assumed that there was such a concept. More recently, a number of scholars have argued that, during and prior to Jesus' lifetime, "Son of Man" was not a title in Jewish circles and that there was no widespread expectation of the coming of a heavenly being called "Son of Man." . It is certainly crucial to keep in mind the diversity of eschatological ideas in Judaism at the turn of the era. As was pointed out above, however, in the treatment of the one like a son of man of Daniel 7:13 in the [i]Similitudes of Enoch and in 4 Ezra, there were certain common features in the interpretation and use of Daniel 7 in Jewish circles. These were the identification of the "one like a son of man" with the messiah, although the notion "messiah" may be reinterpreted in a heavenly rather than a royal sense; the notion that this figure is preexistent; the expectation that he will take an active role in the destruction of the wicked; and the implication that he acts in God's stead. The existence of these common features implies that the emergence of an apocalyptic concept of "Son of Man" need not be seen as a Christian development in response to the experience of Jesus as raised from the dead, as some have argued. It is just as likely that Jesus presupposed these common features in the interpretation of Daniel 7 and gave them his own, innovative twist in his teaching (this point will be discussed below).