By Rev. Charles Cooper
There is general agreement among students of Scripture that there are pre-incarnate appearances of the Lord Jesus in the Old Testament. Whether Daniel 10:5 should be included in that list is debated. The primary reason some are reluctant to include this passage in a list of pre-incarnate appearances of the Lord is because of the apparent limitations delineated in Daniel 10:13.
The heavenly being that speaks in Daniel 10:13 indicates that he was withstood by another being and required the assistance of the archangel Michael to finally overcome the problem. Correctly, some argue that anyone or anything could never withstand the Lord Jesus and He would certainly not need the assistance of an archangel to overcome a problem. Yet, the description of the heavenly being in Daniel 10:5 is parallel to a description of the Lord that appears in Revelation 1:13b-15.
At first, what appears to be a contradiction, which is incompatible with the nature of Scripture, seems unavoidable. However, it is the opinion of the author that the correct solution is one of either two possibilities. The heavenly being that speaks in Daniel 10:5-6 is not the same person that speaks in Daniel 10:10-21. In other words, two heavenly beings speak in Daniel 10. The other possibility is this: there is only one heavenly entity represented in Daniel 10 and he is angelic in nature.
Either solution would not undermine the integrity of Scripture. The easier solution is to see one angelic being speaking throughout Daniel 10. A bit more difficult is the solution that sees two different individuals speak to Daniel in chapter 10. This is the author’s preferred solution. However, one cannot be dogmatic either way.
The case is stronger for more than one angelic being ministering to Daniel in light of the repeated description that occurs in Daniel 10:16 and 18. The repeated phrase, “one with human appearance” would be unnecessary if the same individual is referred to at each occasion. Therefore, the Lord speaks to Daniel in 10:5-6. However, an angelic being speaks to Daniel in 10:11-12. That same angel (Dan 10:11-12) is referred to again in Daniel 10:18-21.