The Lord Jesus Christ Himself attributed the book of Daniel to the prophet bearing that name (cf. Matthew 24:15). The Book of Daniel itself indicates that Daniel was the author (“I, Daniel,” 8:1). Details in the Book of Daniel concerning the history, locale, and culture of Babylon and Medo-Persia favor a firsthand witness of the scenes and events. On the one hand, those who deny the reality of miracles or the supernatural intervention of God in the affairs of nations and the lives of individuals will deny Daniel the authorship. On the other hand, however, those who believe that God can foretell the future will have no problem with accepting the authenticity of the detailed prophecies of the Book of Daniel. Nowhere does this arise more dramatically than in Daniel 11. Those who cannot believe in true prophetic revelation from an all-knowing God adopt the viewpoint of vaticinia ex eventu (“prophecy after the event”).
Ezekiel knew about the wisdom and righteousness of Daniel (Ezekiel 14:14, 20; 28:3). A comparison of the books of Daniel and Ezekiel indicates that the two men were contemporaries. Daniel’s prophetic ministry spanned over 70 years and the history of two major empires of the ancient Near East. He was among the captives removed from Jerusalem by the Babylonians in 605 B.C. (Daniel 1:1) and served at least until the third year of the reign of Cyrus (Daniel 10:1; 535 B.C.). If we accept Daniel’s authorship of the book, these factors lead to the conclusion that the date of writing would have been approximately 530 B.C.
Daniel 11 speaks of events about 200 years after that date. The accuracy of its details brings praise to the lips of believers—praise for an omniscient and all-wise God. However, unbelieving scoffers and critics cannot stand the thought of such a God. They especially cannot allow Him to provide such detailed prophetic revelation in advance of the historical events themselves. Therefore, this chapter has become the target of skeptics, doubters, and deniers of biblical inerrancy.
Daniel 11 Chart