While he was saying this to me, I bowed with my face toward the ground and was speechless. Then one who looked like a man touched my lips, and I opened my mouth and began to speak. I said to the one standing before me, “I am overcome with anguish because of the vision, my Lord, and I feel very weak. How can I, your servant, talk with you, my Lord? My strength is gone and I can hardly breathe.” Again the one who looked like a man touched me and gave me strength. “Do not be afraid, you who are highly esteemed,” he said. “Peace! Be strong now; be strong.” When he spoke to me, I was strengthened and said, “Speak, my Lord, since you have given me strength.”
Daniel 10:15-19 NIV
The battle in the heavens just to get the message to Daniel seemed to replay itself in the body of the prophet. Daniel desperately wanted to hear the message of the angel, but felt the weakness of his worn and pained body. He heard the words of angel telling of the delay in reaching him and later wrote them down for our benefit. However, perhaps sensing renewed distress Daniel simply bowed his head and remained “speechless.”
For the second time the angel touched the prophet. This time he touched his lips enabling him to describe his painful and weakened condition (vs 16-17). Daniel felt severe physical pain as he considered what he had seen in the vision. He wondered how he could carry on a conversation in his weakened state with his affecting his ability to breathe and certainly his ability to comprehend the angel’s message.
For the third time, the angel touched Daniel this time giving him the strength to grasp the details of the vision. Strengthened as a result of the angel’s last touch and the reassurance of God’s favor (again, the prophet is called a “man highly esteemed” by the Lord), Daniel asked the angel to proceed with his message ( vs.19). The details of the angel’s depiction of the vision help us understand why it received such intense opposition in the spirit world and wht it caused such emotional turmoil for the aged prophet.
In explaining the vision, the angel spoke of great wars in the future that would threaten Israel’s very existence. The last ruler,described in the later verses of Daniel 11, would cause great harm to the people Daniel loved. Michael, the archangel mentioned in the text, would arise to protect the people of Israel from this future villain (12:1). Some believe the later king mentioned in Daniel 11 is the still future antichrist. With the sight of such violence and destruction ahead for the people of Israel, it’s no wonder the vision terrified the prophet and left him with such little strength.