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Updated: Oct 15, 2022


The view that Turkey is the King of the North is based wholly on a LITERAL interpretation of Daniel chapter 11. However, this can be shown to be a poor interpretation.  In addition some who advocate Turkey actually prefer Islam as the King of the North which demonstrates the inconsistency of the literal view because Islam is not a LITERAL place, NORTH of LITERAL Jerusalem but an ideology which is global.


Is Daniel chapter 11 exclusively a literal prophecy?

Here's a thought:

  • Daniel 2 has the image of a MAN, symbolic of the prophetic Kingdoms

  • Daniel 7 presents the eyes of a MAN

  • Daniel 7 presents the mouth of a MAN

  • Daniel 11 speaks of the MEN who ruled in the Kingdoms of Daniel chapter 2.

  • Revelation 13 speaks of the number of a MAN

  • Revelation 13 speaks of the name of the MAN

  • The Daniel 2 image is complete

  • The image cannot be broken by adding another earthly power after Rome. .


Daniel 11 focuses on the kings of the North & South, i.e. the kingdoms North & South of Jerusalem. Some claim that the whole chapter refers to literal places literally north or south of literal Jerusalem because the chapter begins by speaking of literal places and must, therefore, end this way. However, as reasonable as this may sound, it is not a Biblical rule of prophetic interpretation. No Bible passage claims that a chapter must be either all symbolic or all literal. When comparing Scripture with Scripture points to the last part of the chapter being symbolic this overides all human rules of interpretation. The chapter breaks in Scripture were not given by God but were added arbitrarily by uninspired men centuries after the Bible was completed. God did not define where the chapter ends so all interpretations which require the end of the chapter to be known are therefore private interpretations.

Furthermore as mentioned earlier, every prophecy in Daniel chapters 2, 7 & 8 begin with literal kingdoms and end with the transition of Pagan Rome to Papal Rome, a transition from a literal 'local' power to a global spiritual entity. This is where the literal view fails in its interpretation of Daniel 11 in insisting that the whole chapter must be literal and not allowing for the change from the literal and local  to the global and spiritual or symbolic transition to Papal Rome. There is nothing after Papal Rome in those chapters, only the judgment and destruction. Hence to introduce another power after the Papal Rome of Daniel 11:31-39 is disjointed in itself and a private interpretation not consistent with the rest of prophecy.


Literal Israel WAS the geograpic centre of prophecy:

Thus saith the Lord GOD; This [is] Jerusalem: I have set it in the midst of the nations and countries [that are] round about her.” Ezekiel 5:5.

However, when the kingdom of God was taken from literal Israel and given to the church, SPIRITUAL Israel (Matt 21:43, Acts 13:46, Rev 2:9), the CHURCH became the ‘geographic’ centre of prophetic terminology. As the church is global that which is said to be North or South of the church cannot be taken literally. North and South of spiritual Israel now represent spiritual ideologies - North (Babylon), South (Atheism). It is similar to the political terms “right wing” & “left wing” which do not refer to literal locations but ways of thinking.

NORTH - BABYLON (King of the North)

The kingdom said to be north of literal Israel was literal Babylon (Eze 26:7). The kingdom said to be north of spiritual Israel is spiritual Babylon of the Book of Revelation (Rev 17:5). cf Daniel 1:1 The King of the North is another name for  Babylon. Though not directly north of Jerusalem, Babylon was said to be north because when they attacked Israel they skirted around the Arabian desert and came down upon Israel from the north. “From the north...The lion...the destroyer of the Gentiles.” (Jer 4:6-7). “...toward the north by the river Euphrates.” “in the north country by the river Euphrates.” (Jer 46:6, 10; also Jer 1:13-15; 6:1; 25:9, 26)

In end time prophecy Babylon  does not refer to a literal city but to a spiritual power.

Rev 17:18 “And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.” Babylon is said to be the woman (whore) described in Rev 17. “The great whore...Mystery Babylon, the mother of harlots.” A woman in prophecy symbolizes a church - an apostate woman symbolizes an apostate church. Babylon, therefore, represents the apostate Christian church. While Babylon is a family name for all spiritual confusion, “The power that for so many centuries maintained despotic sway over the monarchs of Christendom is Rome.” Great Controversy, p382.

The true King of the North is God Himself but the evil one has sought to take God’s place. Of Satan it is said “For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the NORTH:” Isaiah 14:13.

The glory of God is presented as coming from the North (Eze 40:43:1-4)

Satan’s system has usurped the position rightly belonging to God and sits an imposter as the King of the North.

SOUTH - ATHEISM (King of the South)

Daniel 11:8-9 tells us that when “the king of the south” returned “into his own kingdom,” he returned “into Egypt,” showing that Egypt WAS the literal King of the South. Spiritually speaking Egypt, the King of the South represents Atheism. 

Pharaoh, the king of Egypt manifested a disbelief in the true God when he said, “...Who [is] the LORD, that I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I know not the LORD, neither will I let Israel go.” - “Of all nations...Egypt most boldly denied the existence of the living God... this is atheism.” E.G. White, The Great Controversy, p269.

Lamenting over the worldly state of the church the testimonies declared, “The church has turned back from following Christ her Leader and is steadily retreating toward Egypt.” Testimonies Vol 5, p217. Note: This is not literal but spiritual talk.

“South - Hebrew. negeb, from an unused root meaning to be parched.” Strong’s Concordance of the Bible. As waters frequently symbolize the Holy Spirit a parched area might be thought of as a place lacking the spirit of God and there is nothing so lacking of God’s spirit as Atheism.


  • The glorious land was literal Israel.

  • Israel rejected the messiah - 70 weeks prophecy of Daniel 9

  • Israel lost the kingdom at the end of the 70 weeks prophecy, (34AD)

  • The kingdom was given to spiritual Israel (the true Christian Church)

  • The true church inherits all the titles and promises given literal Israel.

  • The glorious land is glorious because it has the “glorious gospel” (2Cor  4:4).

  • Pagan Rome overthrew the literal glorious land of Palestine - Dan 11:16. 

  • Papal Rome will enter the spiritual glorious land (true church) and overthrow many with her weapons of falsehood - false doctrines, her wine (See Daniel 11:41). 


  • Just prior to Christ's return the church will be purified

  • The church will reflect the image of Christ perfectly.

  • It will then have become the GLORIOUS HOLY MOUNTAIN.

  • Mountain in prophecy = Kingdom - Daniel 2 & Rev 17.

  • Christ's glorious holy mountain is his kingdom or people. 

Speaking of the church when Christ returns we read, “That he might present it to himself a GLORIOUS church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be HOLY and without blemish.” Eph 5:27.


Messages from God are often said to come from the East & North. See on NORTH.

  • The angel having the seal of God is said to come from the east (Rev 7:2)

  • This is not to be understood literally as the gospel comes to people from the messengers of God who come from all literal directions.

  • Cyrus, a type or forerunner of Christ came from the east & the north (Isa 41:2, 25; 46:11; Jer 50:3, 9),

  • Cyrus dried up the literal River Euphrates which supported Babylon.

  • Cyrus conquered literal Babylon and delivered God's people.

  • What Cyrus did to literal Babylon, Christ will do to spiritual Babylon.

  • The spiritual Euphrates of Rev 16:12 will be dried up in its support of spiritual Babylon.

  • Those who heralded Christ’s first advent came from the east (Matt 2:1).

  • The tidings (messages) which infuriate the king of the north come from the east & north (Daniel 11:44)

  • One day men will seek God’s word but it will be too late. They are presented as looking for the WORD in the north & east, the very places truth is represented as coming from. (Amos 8:11-12). See also Matt 24:27



Uriah Smith, a great exponent of Bible prophecy proposed in his book (Daniel & Revelation) that Daniel 11 was a literal prophecy with the King of the North (Turkey) coming to his end in verse 45 and none  shall help him.

As mentioned previously, folk have argued that as the territories at the beginning of chapter 11 were literal why interpret the same territories as symbolic at the end of the chapter and argue that a chapter which begins literally must be interpreted literally throughout.

However, there is no Biblical rule that a chapter which begins literally must end literally. All are agreed that the chapter divisions are not inspired. The chapter breaks were added centuries after the Bible was written and any argument based on the chapter divisions is unbiblical.

Smith saw the events of his day as a fulfilment of prophecy and tried to make Turkey fit the prophecy. Amongst other things, Smith's interpretation of the word "push" in Daniel 11:40 was less than scholarly given his position.


ANS:   No!, for the following reasons.

One of the reasons that Turkey or its modification, Turkey and Islam, cannot be the king of the north is seen in the study of Daniel chapter 2  where literal Babylon is the King of the North. There is a transition from literal Babylon [the head of Gold] to Spiritual Babylon in the feet of Iron and Clay (Papal Rome). Hence spiritual Babylon becomes the modern day king of the North. See that study for further details. There are, however, many other points in Daniel 11 to consider which prove the Turkey / Islam view to be a bad interpretation and inconsistent with the rest of the prophecy.


The last earthly power in prophecy is Rome and not Turkey or Islam

The Last earthly power which comes to its end in Daniel 2 is Papal Rome ( Iron & Clay). The last earthly power in Daniel 7 is Papal Rome (Little Horn). The last earthly power in Daniel 8 is Papal Rome (the Little Horn).  The book of Daniel demonstrates the repeat & enlarge principle hence the last earthly power which comes to its end in Daniel 11 is Papal ROME (The King of the North), NOT Islam or Turkey. The transition from a predominantly secular power (Rome) to a predominantly Spiritual one (Papal Rome) is set in Daniel 2 and seen in the other chapters.

  1. Daniel 2: Babylon -> Medo-Persia -> Grecia -> Rome (legs of iron) -> Papal Rome (feet of iron & clay) -> stone strikes

  2. Daniel 7: Babylon -> Medo-Persia -> Grecia ->  Rome (Beast with 10 horns) --> Papal Rome (little horn) -> judgment 

  3. Daniel 8: Medo-Persia (ram) -> Grecia (he-goat) -> Pagan Rome (little horn) --> Papal Rome (little horn) => judgment

  4. Daniel 11: Medo-Persia -> Grecia -> Rome of the Caesars -> Papal Rome -> close of the judgment, Michael stands up. 


Daniel 11 is a detailed explanation of the Vision of Daniel 8. The last power in Daniel 8 is the little horn, Rome. The sequence in Daniel 8:1-14 is Medo-Persia, Grecia, Pagan Rome, Papal Rome and then the Judgment in verse 14. So it is in Daniel 11 with no other power coming after Papal Rome.  The two chapters are intimately related. See comparison between chapters 8 & 11 below.


Islam cannot be the king of the north because Islam is not a literal place north of literal Jerusalem nor is it called the king of the north spiritually speaking.  Islam like the Papacy is a global spiritual system and not a literal location. Those who insist on a literal interpretation of Daniel 11 need to be consistent in their interpretation -  Is it Turkey, a literal place or Islam, a spiritual ideology. If it is the latter, then Daniel 11 in its entirety cannot be interpreted literally which contradicts the literalist's view.


The king of the north was literal Babylon, so if it is applied spiritually it must refer to spiritual Babylon NOT Islam.  The Feet of Iron & Clay of Daniel 2 represents Papal Rome. The Harlot woman of Revelation 17 represents Papal Rome, there called “Mystery Babylon the Great”. Papal Rome is, therefore, spiritual Babylon of the Daniel 2 image and the spiritual King of the North.  The head of the great image begins with literal Babylon, the literal King of the North and ends at the feet of iron & Clay, Papal Rome, "Mystery Babylon", the spiritual King of the North. The King of the North, Papal Rome, comes to its end in Daniel 2 as the image is crushed by the stone. Hence the prophecy is consistent in that Papal Rome comes to its end in Daniel chapters 7 and 8 and logically it is the last power in Daniel 11 to come to its end and none shall help him.


  • Daniel 11 was to show “what shall befall thy people in the latter days.” Daniel 10:14.

  • End of Dan 11, involves the Christian church (Daniel’s spiritual people in Dan 12:1). 

  • Literal Israel was cut off at the end of the 70 weeks prophecy of Daniel 9.

  • Therefore, Daniel 12:1 is not referring to literal Israel at the close of the judgment / close of probation.

  • Literal Israel closed their probation when Stephen at his stoning saw Michael standing at the right hand of the Father in Acts 7:55.

  • Paul himself said in Acts:13:46 “Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.”

  • The true church is identified in Rev 12:17 as those who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus and whom the Dragon (devil or satan - Rev 12:9) pursues and intends on destroying.  


Scriptural line upon line clearly identifies the power of Daniel 11:31-40 as the same power as the little horn of Daniel 7&8, the beast of Revelation 13:1-10 and Paul’s “man of sin,” and “son of perdition” in 2Thessalonians 2 which is Papal Rome and NOT Islam, France or Napoleon. The early church fathers taught this and the Testimonies confirm it.


LOCAL events of the Old Testament typify GLOBAL events in the New Testament. The final conflict is between the people of God and the king of the north and his allies. Islam is not the last earthly power to persecute God’s people, Rome and its Apostate Protestant ally will be, as outlined in Revelation 13. 


Without even considering the scriptural evidence against the literal view of Daniel 11:36-39 and the "HIM" of verse 40 as FRANCE,  The Ottoman Empire centred in Turkey came to its end in the early 1800s - Revelation 9.  Islam does not figure because it literally arose SOUTH of Jerusalem in Medina in Arabia and if anything ought to have been considered the King of the South which would be contrary to Scripture anyway. Egypt is the literal King of the South. Is Daniel 11:36-39 referring to France or to the Papacy? It is important to note that identifying points given in Daniel 11:36-39 are found elsewhere in Scripture and all refer to Rome / the Papacy, NOT France.

Daniel 11:36-38 And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvellous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done. Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all.  But in his estate shall he honour the God of forces: and a god whom his fathers knew not shall he honour with gold, and silver, and with precious stones, and pleasant things.

(a). “And the king”.

The king refers to the Papacy.  The definite article “THE” precedes the word “King”. This implies that the king here brought to view is the power referred to in the preceding verses – namely the Papacy, there called the “abomination that maketh desolate” and not France as some contend. Daniel uses “king” and “kingdom” interchangeably.

(b). “shall do according to his will”

In prophecy the phrase “according to his will,” is only applied to powers which had total control over God’s people: (See Medo-Persia Dan 8:4; Greece 11:3; Pagan Rome 11:16). Following Pagan Rome, Papal Rome alone had such power during its 1260 year supremacy. France never had such power.

Note the following testimony:

"This compromise between paganism and Christianity resulted in the development of 'the man of sin' foretold in prophecy as opposing and exalting himself above God. That gigantic system of false religion is a masterpiece of Satan's power - a monument of his efforts to seat himself upon the throne to rule the earth according to his will"The Spirit of Prophecy, vol. 4, p. 52.1 (Ellen G. White)  The apostle Paul connects Daniel's "King" of verse 36 with the "man of sin" - Papal Rome.

(c). “he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god”

To interpret this correctly one would have to draw from other parts of scripture, line upon line. Paul referred to this power as the “man of sin”... “Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God.” 2Thess 2:4. Proper interpretation would lead to one to conclude that this power is also the Little Horn of Daniel 8:11, 25 which did “magnify [himself] in his heart.”

Papal Rome has magnified itself above all in their self-exaltation:

“The pope is crowned with a triple crown as king of heaven, and earth, and purgatory.” Ferraris’ Promptta Bibliotheca, Vol. VI, p 26, article “Papa.”

“What only God can do by his omnipotence, the priest can also do...Indeed it is not too much to say that in view of the sublimity of their office the priests are so many Gods.” Dignity and Duties of the Priest, Alphonsus De Liguori, p35.

“The Pope is of so great authority and power that he can modify, explain, or interpret even Divine laws...THE POPE CAN MODIFY DIVINE LAW, since his power is not of man, but of God, and he acts in the place of God upon earth.” Lucius Ferraris, “Papa,” art. 2, in Prompta Bibliotheca.

“The pope has power to change times, to abrogate [change] laws, and to dispense [do away] with all things, even the precepts of Christ.” Decretal, De Translantic Episcop.

The testimonies elaborate on what it means to exalt oneself above God and how the Papacy did this.

“The prophetic declaration that the papacy was to oppose and exalt itself "above all that is called God, or that is worshipped," was strikingly fulfilled in the change of the Sabbath from the seventh to the first day of the week. Wherever the papal Sabbath is honored in preference to the Sabbath of the Lord, there is the man of sin exalted above the Creator of the heavens and the earth.  {BTS, February 1, 1913 par. 1} 

“The prophet Daniel declared that the Roman Church, symbolized by the little horn, was to think to change times and laws, [Daniel 7:25.] while Paul styled it the man of sin, [2Thessalonians 2:3, 4.] who was to exalt himself above God. Only by changing God's law could the papacy exalt itself above God; whoever should understandingly keep the law as thus changed would be giving supreme honor to that power by which the change was made. Such an act of obedience to papal laws would be a mark of allegiance to the pope in the place of God.”  {4SP 279.1}

Therefore, only one power in verse 36 fulfils the description of exalting itself above God: Papal Rome & its admission it changed the 7th day Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday.

According to the Spirit of Prophecy only one power fits the description of exalting itself above God – Papal Rome and NOT France because it was Papal Rome who changed the seventh day Sabbath to Sunday the first day of the week.

(d). “and shall speak marvellous things against the God of gods”

Compare this, line upon line, with:

- Daniel 7:8 – “…and, behold, in this horn [were] eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things.”

- And again in Daniel 7:25 - “And he shall speak [great] words against the most High,…”

- This is again repeated in Rev 13:5,6 – “And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty [and] two months. And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.”

First mention principles of interpretation establishes that the power referred to here is Rome and not France.

(e). “and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished:”

Notice in Daniel 8:12 that this power prospered. “And an host was given [him] against the daily [sacrifice] by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practiced, and prospered.”

This is repeated in verse 25 – “And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify [himself] in his heart,..” Again, the wording of scripture is unmistakable and dictates that the power referred to here in Daniel 11:36 must be Rome not France.

(f). “Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers”.

The Papacy did not regard the God of the Apostles. It is only a professed Christian religion. The apostles likened themselves to fathers of their converts (1 Cor 4:15; 3 John 4) Though the apostles were in a way spiritual fathers of those converted through them, we are not to call any man our spiritual Father. Matt 23:9. By commanding unbiblical doctrines, the Papacy shows that it does not regard the God of its ‘fathers.’

(g). “nor the desire of women”

Marriage is forbidden the catholic clergy and nuns. “Although celibacy is not expressly enforced by the Saviour...the [Catholic] Church felt it her duty to lay it down as a law.” The Faith of Our Fathers, James Cardinal Gibbons, (Roman Catholic) 1917 ed., p401. 

Prophetically, Women represent churches and Christ is the desire of the churches. They all claim His name "Christian," but few do as He asks... In Isa 4:1 Christ is represented as the desire of women. Women symbolize churches (Jer 6:2; 2Cor 11:2). In the end-times many churches desire to be called by Christ’s name while doing contrary to what He says. The Papacy has not regarded Christ, the desire of churches (women), in that the Papacy has done contrary to Christ’s word - the Scriptures.

(h). “nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all.”

Remember in verse 36, “he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god” and this is repeated in verse 37, “nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all.” While professing faith in the Christian God, the man of sin actually exalts himself above God and does not regard any god because he sees himself as above all. Paul spoke of this in 2Thess 2:4 – “Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.”

(i). “But in his estate shall he honour the God of forces:

and a god whom his fathers knew not….” Verse 37 said he regards no God except himself. The God of forces must therefore be himself. The word “forces” in this verse is from the Hebrew “mauwz” which means STRENGTH. The word “Rome‚“ in the New Testament is from the Greek “Rhome” and means “STRENGTH.” In the place of God, the Papacy worships the GOD OF FORCES - the GOD OF ROME. Christ draws by love. Rome compels by force. The marginal reading of verse 38 says, “ for the Almighty God, IN HIS SEAT he shall honour yea, he shall honour A GOD, whom his fathers knew not.”

Paul called this power the “man of sin” “Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God SITTETH IN THE TEMPLE OF GOD, shewing himself that he is God.”  The temple (Gr. naos) in which he would sit is the professed Christian church. See Eph 2:21-22.  Paul’s words in 2Thess 2 are clearly linked to Daniel 11. Paul speaks of a withholder that had to be taken out of the way to reveal "the man of sin" (the Papacy) Daniel spoke of the daily which had to be taken away in order to set up the abomination that maketh desolate (the Papacy). Paul spoke of the Man of sin sitting in the temple of God (evidently in God’s seat). Daniel spoke of this power sitting in God’s seat.  Paul spoke of this self exalting power. Daniel spoke of this self exalting power.

(j). “shall he honour with gold, and silver, and with precious stones, and pleasant things.”

Revelation 17 speaks of the whore of Babylon who fornicates with the kings of the earth and is decked in GOLD, PRECIOUS STONES etc. Claiming that she holds the keys to heaven or hell, Rome has had a captivating control over kings and nations. Exerting their influence through the places of power among the nations, the Popes have increased in glory and ruled over many.


The definite article “the,” not the indefinite article “a.” is applied to this King  This indicates that the king of verse 36 is THE king discussed in the previous verses, namely Papal Rome. Therefore, the power of versus 30-35 and verse 36 are the SAME power - the Papacy, not two powers of Papal Rome in verses 31-35 and France in verse 36 as the Literal interpretation view of Daniel 11 tell us.The Testimonies make a point of this in quoting verses 31-36 in the following, emphasis ours.

Verse 36 is included in the following Spirit of Prophecy quote describing "a power" of "verses 31-36" which is Papal Rome and NOT France (or Napoleon).  

“The prophecy in the eleventh of Daniel has nearly reached its complete fulfillment. Much of the history that has taken place in fulfillment of this prophecy will be repeated. In the thirtieth verse A POWER is spoken of that “shall be grieved, and return, and have indignation against the holy covenant: so shall he do; he shall even return, and have intelligence with them that forsake the holy covenant.” [Verses 31-36, quoted.]” E.G. White, 13 Manuscript Releases, p394.


“according to his will.”

This phrase is applied to those nations which had total power over the people of God (cf. Dan 8:4; Dan 11:3; Dan 11:16). 

France never had such power. Papal Rome did.


To magnify oneself above God (verse 36)

does not necessarily imply atheism. 2Thess speaks of the power of Daniel 11 exalting himself above God. This power is the “man of sin”, the Papacy. What does it mean to EXALT oneself above God? The Testimonies help us understand this in order to nail down this power in Daniel 11

“The prophetic declaration that the papacy was to oppose and exalt itself "above all that is called God, or that is worshipped," was strikingly fulfilled in the change of the Sabbath from the seventh to the first day of the week. Wherever the papal Sabbath is honored in preference to the Sabbath of the Lord, there is the man of sin exalted above the Creator of the heavens and the earth.”  {BTS, February 1, 1913 par. 1}

“I want to keep God's law and live. But that man of sin has taken it upon himself to change the fourth commandment, and shove in a spurious Sabbath, to show his greatness and power to exalt himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped.”  {1SAT 111.2} 

Therefore, the change the Sabbath of God is said to be the sign or identifying MARK of that power that would exalt itself above God. Needless to say France did not change the Sabbath, Papal Rome did.


The French disregarded the permanence of marriage but not women (Dan 11:37). This fits the Papacy as noted above.


While the French did honor reason and personified it by a woman, nothing is said about France ever honoring either the woman or “reason” with “gold and silver, and precious stones, and pleasant things” as the verse necessitates.


Daniel 11:40 states that the king of the South would “push” at HIM.

"And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over." Daniel 11:40  


Note Daniel 8:4: “I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward, and southward; so that no beasts might stand before him, neither was there any that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became great.”

There is no suggestion that the Ram would make “a comparatively feeble” (Uriah Smith - see below) attempt but it conquers and destroys in battle with total victory that no kingdom might stand before it, that no kingdom can deliver out of his hand and it did according to its will.

This is not the case with the literal view and its interpretation of the word “push” in Daniel 11:40 where literal Egypt, the king of the south, is said to make “a comparatively feeble resistance” against France. In prophecy, to “push” or “pushing” means to attack and conquer as in Daniel 8:4 and not simply to engage in battle or resist. In the literal Turkey Islam view of Daniel 11, Egypt (the literal King of the South) did not attack and conquer France in 1798 ; it was the exact opposite. (See on verse 40).

Uriah Smith admits: “We inquire, therefore, Is it a fact that at the time of the end, Egypt did "push," or make a comparatively feeble resistance,…” against France. Daniel and Revelation pg 302

Note Smith’s view. “This application of the prophecy calls for a conflict to spring up between Egypt and France, and Turkey and France, in 1798, which year, as we have seen, marked the beginning of the time of the end; and if history testifies that such a triangular war did break out in that year, it will be conclusive proof of the correctness of the application. We inquire, therefore, Is it a fact that at the time of the end, Egypt did "push," or make a comparatively feeble resistance, while Turkey did come like a resistless "whirlwind," against "him," that is, the government of France? We have already produced some evidence that the time of the end commenced in 1798; and no reader of history need be informed that in that very year a state of open hostility between France and Egypt was inaugurated. {1897 UrS, DAR 302.4,5}

If one goes with Smith’s interpretation, then verse 40 is being turned on its head by the literal view. The verse states that the King of the South (literal Egypt according to Smith et al) would push at him (Napoleon / France) and not the other way around.

Therefore,  the literal view should read: “And at the time of the end shall the king of the south (Egypt) push at him (France / Napoleon): and the king of the north (Turkey) shall come against him (France / Napoleon) like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over.”  

However, in the explanation by Smith, he states: …at the time of the end, Egypt did "push," or make a comparatively feeble resistance,…”   Verse 40 says that the King of the South would push at him. According to the literal view and the correct meaning of the word “push” in Daniel 8:4: 

1. Egypt should have pushed at France / Napoleon

2. Egypt should have conquered France / Napoleon

3. Egypt should have been victorious against France / Napoleon,

4. that France could not be delivered out of Egypt’s hand,

5. that Egypt would do according to his will against France / Napoleon.

Did this happen? Instead Smith says that Egypt made “a comparatively feeble resistance,…” which is not the meaning of the word “push” according to Daniel 8:4. In addition, to “push” means the one doing the pushing is the aggressor but Smith contradicts himself  by saying, “Egypt did "push," or make a comparatively feeble resistance,…” Push and resistance have different meanings. It is like Smith is trying to justify this triangular war but is stuck with history so tries to marry both “push” and resistance” and makes a mess of the interpretation.  Egypt did not “push” against France / Napoleon. He admits that France / Napoleon came against Egypt and Egypt made a feeble resistance against him which is not the way verse 40 constructs it or ought to be read and understood. 

Furthermore, according to the evidence tabled so far, France / Napoleon is not the King of verse 36 anyway, so there was never a triangular war according to the prophecy regardless of how one tries to fit history into the prophecy. 

Prophecy is the future foretold or predicted and history is the fulfilment of that prediction and not the other way around.  

Uriah Smith admits it was a feeble attempt by Egypt to “push” against France when it was attacked by the latter, which is not in keeping with the true meaning of “pushing”. But if we allow the Bible to interpret the meaning of “PUSH”, then it is a definitive conquer and destroy and not a feeble attempt as Smith says.

Note Daniel 8:4 again, “I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward, and southward; so that no beasts might stand before him, neither [was there any] that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became great.” cf the Bear in Daniel 7 had three ribs in its mouth which represents total victory over three beasts (kingdoms) which those ribs came from. Egypt did not conquer and destroy France in the time of the end - 1798.


The literal interpretation fails to consider the transition from a literal local kingdom to a spiritual global kingdom,  i.e. from Pagan Rome to Papal Rome in Daniel chapters 2, 7 and 8. Daniel 11 is, therefore, seen to be wholly literal and in an attempt to legitimise this interpretation they must try to make the KING of verse 36, Napoleon Bonaparte. They simply drag this interpretation out of thin air with no scripture or spirit of prophecy to support the view which we have seen in this document is untenable.

William Miller, Ellen White, her husband, James White, William Gage and “The Word to the little Flock, p.9” all point to Rome as the last power and King of verse 36.  Hence the connecting verses from 37 to 40 are also describing Rome and not Napoleon or France.  Unfortunately it gets worse, and the following was simply mind boggling, having agreed that the King of verse 36 is Papal Rome, the literalists continue to say that verse 37 onwards is still consistent with the literal Turkey view. This has to be one of the saddest indictments on the interpretation of Daniel 11.  The reasoning is not sound and cannot be sound. I realise this sounds ad nauseam, but please review the connections between verses 36 to 39, even to the first “him” of verse 40 and see if  you can honestly slot in two different powers, Papal Rome the King of verse 36 and then Napoleon, or France or Turkey etc from verse 37 onward and remain true to the line upon line, precept upon precept principle of scriptural interpretation. And the answer is, you can’t. It is a private interpretation of the verses with no regard for Miller’s rules of Bible interpretation.


Egypt was a state of Turkey with the sultan of Constantinople as its ruler. Therefore, in 1798 Egypt was actually a part of what the Turkey view calls the King of the North and can hardly be called the King of the South at this point in the prophecy.


for God had rejected the Jewish nation centuries earlier in AD34 because of their unbelief.  Only God’s presence makes a thing holy. Acts 13:46 "Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.


which grows from strength to strength, whereas Turkey / the Ottoman empire is of no great significance today having met its predicted end as foretold in Revelation 9.

13. IN OTHER END TIME PROPHECIES (e.g. REV 14, 17, 18) 

events and terms such as Jerusalem, Babylon, Jezebel, Euphrates, Israel (the church) etc. are all to be understood symbolically and applied spiritually. To read the last portions of Daniel 11 literally is out of harmony with Revelation. Jesus told the woman at the well in John chapter 4 that it is not to be at literal Jerusalem or at this literal mountain that people are to worship God, but they are to worship him in spirit and in truth.


The largest chapter of the Great Controversy - The French Revolution, doesn’t once refer to Daniel 11:36-40, which the Turkey view claims is referring to atheistic France.


till the day he died. No-one  ever intimated he was in error.


in the latter days...” Daniel 10:14. The vision was not given to show what would befall Turkey. Obviously God’s people must be involved in the latter portion of Daniel 11.

Some also claim that Turkey has already fulfilled the first part of Daniel 11:45, in that she has planted her palaces in Jerusalem, namely the Dome of the Rock and  the El Aska mosque. However, these buildings were not ‘planted’ in the time of the end, i.e. after 1798, as the prophecy demands, but over 1100 years before, in AD691. Neither were these buildings “planted” by Turkey, but by Omar, the Arabian Moslem.

An attempt has been made to bolster the application of Turkey as the King of the North by including with Turkey the Islamic religion. If the phrase, the King of the North is taken as a symbol for Islam then the king of the South, the glorious land, etc. should also be taken as symbols. This inconsistency, and the failure of Islam to fit the specifications of the prophecy show the error of this view.


There are other aspects of the prophecy which cannot be easily explained by a completely literal interpretation of Daniel 11.


cannot refer to literal Jerusalem as there is nothing glorious or holy about the present city.  Jesus said in Matthew 23:38: "Behold your house is left unto you desolate". While Jerusalem is a prophetic location in Daniel 9 and Matthew 24, it cannot be God’s glorious holy mountain.  Everything about it terminated with the 70 weeks prophecy. It was rejected by God. (Matthew 23:37-39) It’s temple was destroyed and it’s religion made of none effect as everything centered around the sanctuary service – there is no salvation in the Jews religion – no high priest, no temple, no blood sacrifice, no forgiveness of sin => therefore, like every other pagan religion, only death awaits it.  The Testimonies also says they became the agents of Satan for the destruction of the world. 


escaping out of his (the King of the North's) hand cannot be explained with a literal interpretation. These peoples do not exist. The events of Daniel 11:40-45 occur IN the “time of the end”. Edom, Moab and Ammon are not literal places or peoples in “the time of the end”. The names Edom, Moab and Ammon is used figuratively and is to be applied spiritually to those who escape out of the hand of the King of the North (Papal Rome) as noted above in verses 41, 44. These people were not in the glorious land but escape from the control of the king of the north INTO the glorious land.


Literal Edom, Moab & Ammon no longer exist, confirming that the countries and lands in the latter parts of Daniel 11 have a spiritual application. These three peoples were related to Israel. Edom was the descendant of Esau. The whoredoms Israel committed with the Moabites (Numbers 25:1-3) typifies the ecumenical apostasy that some in God’s end-time church are entering into with the fallen churches of Babylon.  Moab and Ammon were Lot’s sons through his daughters incestuous relations with their father (Genesis 19:36-38). Moab and Ammon escaped the destruction of Sodom while in their father's "loins", so to speak (cf. Hebrews 7:9-10). These of Moab and Ammon represent the remnant of God’s people in the various denominations who escape out of the hand of the King of the North, Papal Rome. They escape the end-time destruction by heeding the three angels messages and coming out of Babylon to join the true people of God. (cf. Revelation 18:4).

Edom, Moab and the Children of Ammon escape out of the King of the North's hand.

“The Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of His people...they shall lay their hand upon EDOM and MOAB; and the chief of the children of AMMON shall obey them.” Isa 11:11-16. 

This is being fulfilled in the call to come out of Babylon:  “September 23, the Lord showed me that He had stretched out His hand the second time to recover the remnant of His people [this is drawn from Isa 11:11-16 quoted above], and that efforts must be doubled in this gathering time.” E.G. White, Early Writings, p74.  Bracketed comment supplied.

“Company after company from the Lord’s army joined the foe and tribe after tribe [Edom, Moab and Ammon?] from the ranks of the enemy united with the commandment keeping people of God.”  E.G. White, Testimonies to the Church, Vol. 8, p41.  Bracketed comment supplied. Amos 9:11-12 compared with Acts 15:16, 17 shows that Edom and the heathen which follow God, represent “the residue of men.” When enlightened with the truth and the call to “come out of her my people,” multitudes of God’s people presently in Babylon will separate from the fallen churches and unite themselves with the remnant. (Amos 9:9-13; Isa 56:6-8; Jer 40:11-12). 

“I saw that this message will close with power and strength far exceeding the midnight cry. Servants of God, endowed with power from on high with their faces lighted up, and shining with holy consecration, went forth to proclaim the message from heaven. Souls that were scattered all through the religious bodies answered to the call, and the precious were hurried out of the doomed churches, as Lot [Moab & Ammon being yet in Lot’s loins] was hurried out of Sodom before her destruction.” E.G. White, Early Writings, p278-279. Bracketed comment supplied.


We do not understand this to mean that Daniel's people, the literal Jews of today are the ones to be delivered by Michael. The literal Jews through their rejection of Christ gave way to the Spiritual Jews (the true Christian church) at the close of the 70 weeks prophecy with the stoning of Stephen. Paul under inspiration said: "Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles." Hence Daniel's literal people, the Jews, cannot be the ones intended by Daniel 12:1 The new "Jews" (Revelation 2:8,9) is Spiritual, God's true Christian Church.


If Daniel 11 were to be taken literally, then one could make a case for Islam being the King of the South rather than the North for it literally came into existence "south" of Jerusalem in Medina, Arabia and swept across the middle east. Furthermore while Turkey is a literal location, Islam is an ideology, religion, something spiritual and inconsistent with a literal interpretation of Daniel 11. Hence Islam is not the King of the North by any stretch of the imagination.


The Dome of the Rock and the Al Aqsa Mosque

The "Tabernacles" of the King of the North is literally interpreted as the Dome of the Rock and the Al Aqsa Mosque of Islam. These were to be planted in the “time of the End” i.e. after 1798 but all know that this is not the case. These were built well before 1798 and not by Turkey. Nowhere in the text of Daniel 11 does it say that the tabernacles were to be planted before 1798.

The problem is the literal interpretation vacillates between Turkey and Islam, Turkey because it wants a literal location and Islam because the interpretation includes global terrorism as its basis.