Many years had passed and many events had transpired since Daniel had lived. His later prophecies foretold kingdoms that would rule after the Jewish exiles had returned from their captivity in Babylon.
Daniel was an interpreter of king’s dreams, but also saw highly figurative visions in his own dreams. In one such dream, he saw four beasts come up from the sea. They were in the form of a lion, bear, leopard and an unnamed creature. Those beasts were unusual in that they had various other body parts such as wings, multiple heads, iron teeth and horns. As with a previous dream of Nebuchadnezzar, each beast represented a different empire. It is thought that the lion represented Babylon and the bear depicted the Medo-Persian Empire that conquered Babylon. About 332 B.C. the Grecian Empire represented by the leopard led by Alexander the Great began conquering a vast number of nations. Rome was established about 753 B.C., but did not become the world power for approximately another six hundred years.
God was called the Ancient of Days and was pictured on His awesome throne. Jesus, the Son of Man would be given an everlasting dominion of saints which would never be destroyed. That everlasting kingdom would be severely persecuted by the fourth beast, but in the end the greatness of the kingdoms of earth would be given to, “the saints of the Most High.”