Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by
International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House.
© Copyright 2010 All rights reserved.
Daniel 11: 11-13
(11) "Then the king of the South will march out in a rage and fight against
the king of the North, who will raise a large army, but it will be defeated.
(12) When the army is carried off, the king of the South will be filled with
pride and will slaughter many thousands, yet he will not remain
triumphant. (13) For the king of the North will muster another army,
larger than the first; and after several years, he will advance with a huge
army fully equipped.
Starting here, the ‘king of the south’ refers to the Mamluks because they took Cairo
from the southern part of the Ayyubids in 1250. The Mamluks were former slaves of
mixed ancestry but mainly Kipchak Turks from Russia, Ukraine, and Georgia.
They converted to Islam and served as soldiers for the Arab caliphs starting in the
9th century. They grew in power and eventually established the Mamluk dynasty in
Egypt from 1250–1517.
In 1260, the Mamluks took advantage of Hulagu’s return home and attacked the
Mongol’s diminished forces. At the battle of Ain Jalut, just north of Jerusalem, there
were about 20,000 men on each side. Historians consider the battle to be significant
because it was the first time the Mongols had suffered such a decisive defeat. The
Mamluks were triumphant farther north that same year and drove the Mongols
completely out of Syria.
Hulagu Khan returned in 1262 but before he could take revenge against the
Mamluks, he was attacked by another khanate from Russia. It was the first
occurrence of the Mongols fighting each other. However, Berke Khan was the first
Mongol leader to convert to Islam too. He became offended by the way Hulagu had
sacked Baghdad and destroyed the Abbasid Caliphate, the spiritual head of Islam.
While Hulagu was gone, the Mamluks heard about Berke’s conversion and nourished
their relationship with the Russian khanate. That strategy probably saved them
because Hulagu suffered severe defeats at the hands of Berke until his death in 1265.
As the verse says, the Mongols did return with a larger army, several years later,
but they were stopped again by outside forces. Ghazan Khan, great-grandson of
Hulagu, attacked the Mamluks with a huge army in 1299. He led an army of 100,000
across the Euphrates, sacked Damascus, and got as far as Gaza. However, this time,
the Chagatai Khanate from northeast Persia attacked the Ilkhanate. Ghazan Khan
had to return to defend his Persian territory so the Mamluks re-occupied Syria and
held their position as “king of the south”.
The vision ...
Daniel 11: 14
Page 7 on Daniel 11
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Daniel 11 Explained
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