Method of Interpretation

Our approach is described by these 19th-Century authors:

William Miller:  "How to know when a word is used figuratively. If it makes good sense as it stands, and does no violence to the simple laws of nature, then it must be understood literally; if not, figuratively." Views of the Prophecies and Prophetic Chronology Selected From Manuscripts of William Miller, 1841, ed. Joshua V. Himes. pp. 20-24.

James White:  "The only safe and proper rule of Biblical interpretation is to take every passage of the Book of God as meaning what it says, word for word, excepting those cases where the text and context clearly show that a figure or parable is introduced for a more clear elucidation of the subject." Review and Herald, May 29, 1879.

Ellen White:  "The language of the Bible should be explained according to its obvious meaning, unless a symbol or figure is employed." The Great Controversy, p. 599.

Accordingly, there is no reason why "north" should not mean "north." "South" simply means "south," etc. Daniel 11 is not a symbolic vision; it is an explanation in straightforward language.