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Thy Kingdom Come

March 18, 2018 | Daniel 7 | exposition, prophecy

Today, we’re in chapter 7, which begins a huge shift in the book of Daniel, moving from the narrative history of the first six chapters to what students of the Bible call “apocalyptic” or prophetic writings. Moving from chapter 6 to chapter 7, is like turning the TV from the History Channel to the SYFY Network–– we’re going to have to adjust to understanding images and concepts that are out of this world! Because in this chapter, God pulls back the veil on the future activities of this world’s kingdoms and the activities in heaven that culminate in God’s everlasting kingdom.

Rescued from the Lion’s Den

March 4, 2018 | Daniel 6 | exposition

Have you ever needed to be rescued? Maybe you need a rescue today. Some may be in bondage to an addiction. You need to be set free. Some have been given a life-threatening diagnosis. You need to be delivered, saved from danger or even death. Do you need to be rescued today? In the sixth chapter of Daniel, King Darius learned that God was able to rescue Daniel from death in the lion’s den. We can know that God is able to rescue us from the power of death.

The Writing on the Wall

March 4, 2018 | Daniel 5 | exposition

Babylon symbolically represents the world’s system – its government, economy and religion. Babylon represents this world. And just as Daniel and his friends were taken captive from their true home in Jerusalem and forced to live as exiles in Babylon, so as followers of Christ, our true home is heaven. Yet for now we live in this world. How should we live as citizens of heaven, so that we honor the Lord of heaven? In the book of Daniel chapter 5, the Babylonian kingdom was judged and brought to an end because its king nor its people honored the Most High God. We must recognize that God deserves all of our honor.

God is Already at Work

February 26, 2018 | Daniel 4 | exposition

Have you ever considered what God has done for you? Do realize that He was already at work in your life even before you were born? In the book of Daniel, King Nebuchadnezzar proclaimed the signs and wonders that the Most High God had done for him to all who dwelt on the earth. We can recognize how the Lord is already at work in our lives.

Trust in the Lord Who Rescues

February 18, 2018 | Daniel 3 | exposition, trials

How can we continue to trust the Lord when we are going through times of trouble and trial? When it looks like the worst is going to happen, how do we continue to rely on the Lord for rescue? In the third chapter of Daniel, the Lord delivered the three Hebrew exiles from the fiery furnace and caused even the pagan king to exalt Him as the God who rescues. We can place our trust in the Lord who is able to rescue us in times of trouble.

Hope in Him

February 12, 2018 | Daniel 2 | exposition, hope

Where is your hope? Hope is an expectation of a future fulfilled desire. Where do you put your hope when the world around you seems to be falling apart? Do you put it in a bank account? In a job? In your spouse or other loved one? Where do you put your hope? Daniel and his friends put their hope in the Lord.

In the book of Daniel chapter two, Daniel put his hope in the God of heaven, who revealed to Daniel that in the end He will replace all human kingdoms with His own everlasting kingdom. As Christians, our hope is in Christ alone whose coming kingdom will replace all earthly kingdoms and endure forever.

Depending on God’s Faithfulness

February 4, 2018 | Daniel 1 | exposition

If you’ve ever been in a life situation where you’re asking “Why God? Where are you?” Then, you know what it means to live in Babylon. When the exiles living in Daniel’s time read his book, it must’ve been a great encouragement to them.

In the first chapter of Daniel, Daniel and his friends learned that they could depend on God’s faithfulness even when they were exiles in the foreign land of Babylon. We can depend on God’s faithfulness as we live in the world today.

“in the first year of his reign I, Daniel, understood by the books the number of the years specified by the word of the Lord through Jeremiah the prophet, that He would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem” (Daniel 9:2 NKJV).

December 2, 2017

“In the first year” of Darius’ reign, Daniel was moved to make a careful study of the “books” of Scripture. Surely the sudden shift of world domination by the Babylonians, to the now conquering Persians, made him wonder how it would affect the future of Israel. As he studied the book of Jeremiah, he began to understand that the Lord’s “seventy years” of “desolations” for Jerusalem were nearing an end (see Jer. 25:11-12). The seventy years of captivity was God’s discipline for not keeping the Sabbath Year (Lev. 25:4), allowing the land to rest from planting every seven years. Since they had not obeyed the Sabbath Year for 490 years (490/7 = 70), God rested the land Himself for seventy years (2 Chron. 36:20-21).

The understanding that Daniel derived from his careful Bible study drove him to his knees in prayers of confession and repentance on behalf of his people. He began to see the light at the end of the tunnel. He made supplication to the Lord that He might “turn” His “anger” and “fury” away from Jerusalem (Dan. 9:16). And the Lord answered Daniel’s prayers. For that same year, Cyrus the Great (Possibly another name for Darius. Or Darius served under Cyrus) would be moved by the Lord to make a decree allowing the Jews to return to Jerusalem (2 Chron. 36:22-23).

We can learn much about discerning the will of God from Daniel. Bible study with much prayer is key for those that would hear direction from the Lord.

“Gabriel, make this man understand the vision” (Daniel 8:16 NKJV).

December 1, 2017

It is interesting to see the angel Gabriel mentioned in our Old Testament reading on this first day of December. For he will also be of great interest to us as we read the gospel accounts of Christ’s birth during this Christmas season. There are only two angels named in the Bible (excluding the fallen one, Lucifer). They are Michael, the archangel of God and Gabriel, who acts as God’s messenger. The name “Gabriel” means “Strong Man of God.” He described himself to Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist, like this: “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news” (Luke 1:19). Gabriel is recorded as bearing God’s messages to Daniel (Dan. 8:16, 9:21), to Zechariah (Luke 1:19), to Mary (Luke 1:26), and although his name is not given, to Joseph (Matt. 1:20).

There was something about Gabriel’s presence that struck fear in each human encounter. Perhaps it was the lingering presence of God that still clung to his person as it once did to Moses after he came down from Mt. Sinai. His purpose was specific each time. Give the addressee the message and make sure they “understand” it.

“But go your way till the end. And you shall rest and shall stand in your allotted place at the end of the days.” (Daniel 12:13 ESV)

December 4, 2016

God gave Daniel great insight into the future, yet his understanding was only partial. No matter how much he studied these future prophecies, much was left cloudy for him. So, the Lord gave Daniel three insights on how to respond to His end times prophecies:
1) “Go your way.” In other words, get busy doing what I’ve called you to do in the present. 
2) “You shall rest.” Physical death would come for Daniel long before the end. Death for the believer is not the end, but merely rest from physical labor. Daniel would not see all that God had revealed. He would rest (“sabbath”).
3) “You shall stand at the end.” God told Daniel that he would rise again at the end of days. This speaks of the bodily resurrection of the saints.
This instruction is good for today’s reader of prophecy too. We may not know all that the future holds, but we can know the One who holds the future.