Daniel 8:22-27
Daniel 8:22
Now that being broken, whereas four stood up for it, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not in his power.
Once Alexander the Great had died, represented in the verse as “being broken,” the four top generals have taken over his kingdom but instead of one being mightier than the other three, all four will have the same power and authority as each one rules a separate section of the once mighty kingdom.
Daniel 8:23
And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up.
Now the Scriptures teach that in the latter time of their kingdom which would put it in the second century B.C. because what was left of the Seleucid Empire was absorbed into Rome about 63 B.C.  In the second century B.C. the power of the Seleucids was great.  In 198 B.C. Antiochus III took over the throne after defeating the Ptolemies.  However, the verse is pointing to the fact that a king of fierce countenance will arise.  The word “fierce” is also translated as “harsh, mighty or strong.”  This person is Antiochus Epiphanes IV who took the kingdom by stealth from Antiochus III the Great about 175 B.C.  To stand up means to establish his throne firmly.
Daniel 8:24
And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people.
He gained power but not of his own power because he was only a man.  The power that he had come from God who allowed him to ascend the throne at this time.  He also gained some of his power by using stealth and intrigue to solidify his power, in the same manner in which he took the throne.  His strength also came from the fact that his army had defeated the Israeli army and many of the Jews had accepted the Greek worship by turning away from the true God.  In a period of three days he killed about 40,000 Israelites while in battle with them.  Many more beyond the 40,000 were sold into slavery.  His domination over the Israelites would allow him to do whatever he wanted.
Daniel 8:25
And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand.
The “policy” in this verse can also be understood as “understanding, discretion, or wisdom.”  We read in verse 23 that he had understanding in dark sentences.  His own pride would cause him to magnify himself as deity which many ancient monarchs believed.  He shall also make a peace agreement with them but of course it would benefit the king and not the people.  He would basically be deceiving the people and lulling them to sleep like so many evil governments do.  Not only would he attempt to confront and conquer the people with trickery, he had also challenged the God of Heaven by taking away the daily sacrifice and then setting up idolatry in the temple such as images of Zeus and sacrificing a pig on the Altar in the Temple.  The promise at the end of the verse is that he will be broken, that is, he will be taken out of the way and destroyed.  His reign would only last 11 years.
Daniel 8:26
And the vision of the evening and the morning which was told is true: wherefore shut thou up the vision; for it shall be for many days.
Daniel is now told that the vision of the 2300 evenings and mornings is absolutely true but it will not come to pass for another approximately 375 years so therefore shut up the vision which means to keep it secret until the time of fulfillment when the Jews will have the writings of Daniel available to them so they will understand what is happening.
Daniel 8:27
And I Daniel fainted, and was sick certain days; afterward I rose up, and did the king's business; and I was astonished at the vision, but none understood it.
This vision so disturbed Daniel that he was literally faint.  It also caused him to be sick many days.  It may have been a sickness which was associated with his emotions and spirit and not necessarily a physical sickness.  Yet, he went about doing his job as a ruler in the kingdom and served the king.  Daniel was literally devastated or amazed at the vision but at that time none had understood it because the meaning was still a secret for many years yet.