Says Daniel: "Therefore, the he goat waxed very great: and when he was strong, the great horn was broken; and for it came up four notable ones towards the four winds of heaven. And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the starts to the ground and stamped upon them." (Dan. 8:8, 10.)
"The host of heaven" cannot refer to the Jewish nation at that time for the Jews had killed the prophets, and had rejected very message God had sent by His humble servants, until there was no remedy. Thus they had been without a prophet since the time of Malachi. Had they obeyed God's voice through His
Shepherd's Rod book, Vol. 2 129
messengers, He would not have left them to fall under the Roman yoke.
The Jews reasoned as most Christians do at the present time. They took the position that they were wise and well favored of God, even though they had rejected every ray of light, and completely despised the entreaties and mercies of Jehovah. Their misconception of God's truth, and prejudice against light upon the word of God, robbed them of wisdom and knowledge of the Most High until they were finally led into terrible sin and condemnation. When they rejected the message borne to them by the apostles with the power of the Holy Spirit, they sinned against the Holy Ghost, and thereby closed the only channel through which God could communicate with them.
Therefore, the Jews, under such condemnation, could not be termed the "host of heaven," and much less "stars." "Yea he magnified himself even to the Prince of the host." (Dan. 8:11.) "The Prince" is Christ, and "the host" are the Christians. This is the only proper application that can be made of the expression.
"The stars" are none other than the apostles, as they were symbolized by the woman's crown of Revelation 12:1. Therefore, the "stars" that were cast down refer to the apostles, and "the host," to the Christians after the crucifixion of Christ, when Rome, together with the Jews, persecuted and martyred ("cast to the ground"). "Yea he magnified himself even to the Prince of the host"; that is, the Roman power magnified itself against Christ -- Prince of the Christians.