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  • Writer's pictureSharon


Updated: Dec 13, 2022


In the same way that the Kings of the Medes and Persians were used as prophetic symbols for servants of God, so the He-goat is the King of Grecia but is a prophetic symbol in opposition to the servants of God. But before we study the King of Grecia, we need to understand what the Bible has to say about the spiritual meaning of Grecia.

The Rough Goat of Daniel 8:5 is defined in Daniel 8:21 as the king of Grecia. What does the Bible say about Grecia spiritually? Is there also a symbolic spiritual meaning to understand when we think of Grecia?

Daniel 8:5 And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes.

Daniel 8: 21 And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king.

The Hebrew word used for Grecia in the Old Testament is defined by the Strong’s Concordance as Javan.


יָוָן Yâvân, yaw-vawn'; probably from the same as H3196; effervescing (i.e. hot and active); Javan, the name of a son of Joktan, and of the race (Ionians, i.e. Greeks) descended from him, with their territory; also of a place in Arabia:—Javan

Early in scripture we find the origin of the Greeks to be a grandson of Noah through his son Japheth by the name of Javan whose name is a synonym for Grecia. The Bible says of the sons of Javan that these were the Gentile islands.

Genesis 10:4 And the sons of Javan; Elishah, and Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim.

5 By these were the isles of the Gentiles divided in their lands; everyone after his tongue, after their families, in their nations.

This is spiritually significant because Javan or Grecia became synonymous with Gentiles. And the term “Gentiles” became synonymous with those in the world who did not know God.

Isaiah 66:19 And I will set a sign among them, and I will send those that escape of them unto the nations, to Tarshish, Pul, and Lud, that draw the bow, to Tubal, and Javan, to the isles afar off, that have not heard my fame, neither have seen my glory; and they shall declare my glory among the Gentiles.

Later in the New Testament we see the same principle of grouping people either into the category of Gentiles (those who do not know God) or the children of Israel.

And it was the duty of Christians to tell Gentiles about God.

The Greek word in the New Testament for “Greek” or “Gentile” is Hellen.


Ἕλλην Héllēn, hel'-lane; from G1671; a Hellen (Grecian) or inhabitant of Hellas; by extension a Greek-speaking person, especially a non-Jew:—Gentile, Greek.

Acts 9:15 But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:

Acts 10:45 And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost.

Act 16:1 Then came he to Derbe and Lystra: and, behold, a certain disciple was there, named Timotheus, the son of a certain woman, which was a Jewess, and believed; but his father was a Greek:

Today we use the term Hellenism from the Greek root word Helen to mean Greek thought, customs or styles.


Hel·​le·​nism | \ ˈhe-lə-ˌni-zəm \

Definition of Hellenism

2: devotion to or imitation of ancient Greek thought, customs, or styles

3: Greek civilization especially as modified in the Hellenistic period by influences from southwestern Asia

4: a body of humanistic and classical ideals associated with ancient Greece and including reason, the pursuit of knowledge and the arts, moderation, civic responsibility, and bodily development

First Known Use of Hellenism

1609, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Gentiles were understood to be of different values and character than the people of God as in the following scriptures.

Jeremiah 14:22 Are there any among the vanities of the Gentiles that can cause rain? or can the heavens give showers? art not thou he, O LORD our God? therefore we will wait upon thee: for thou hast made all these things.

Matthew 6:31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?

32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

Matthew 20:25 But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them.

26 But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;

27 And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant:

Romans 1:13 Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.

Christ would be delivered to the Gentiles. And Jerusalem would be trodden down of the Gentiles. Consequently, at times Gentiles or Greeks were considered as the enemy of God’s people.

Matthew 20:19 And shall deliver him to the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify him: and the third day he shall rise again.

Joel 3:6 The children also of Judah and the children of Jerusalem have ye sold unto the Grecians, that ye might remove them far from their border.

Luke 21:24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.

Finally, we need to understand that the gift of salvation is offered alike to Jew and Gentile. Most of us should be very happy because since we are not Jews we are considered converts to Christianity from the Gentile world.

Romans 10:11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.

13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

In summary, though Grecia in Daniel 8 is a literal kingdom, it is also a spiritual symbol used throughout scripture for those who are not Jews or who do not know God. Therefore, for the purpose of considering the spiritual battle between Christ and Satan described in Daniel 8 we will continue to understand Grecia symbolically as the Gentile world or those who do not know God.

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