Daniel

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Daniel 2:1-49, Luke 12:11-12, Colossians 3:23-24

Socrates famously declared, “I am wise because I know that I know nothing.” There is certainly a kind of paradoxical wisdom in his statement that is admirable, but it is still only the wisdom of men. It is the same kind of wisdom we see displayed by the Chaldean wise men who advised Nebuchadnezzar. They knew that they knew nothing. They could not penetrate the deep mysteries of unremembered dreams. This was the realm of the gods alone, those who did not dwell with men (Daniel 2:11).

But the wisdom of God is higher than the wisdom of men, and in Daniel we see a wisdom that far surpasses that of Socrates. It’s in a whole different category. The wisdom of Daniel is this: he knew that true wisdom is from God alone, the Creator of heaven and earth. Furthermore, he knew that the one true God was not like the gods of the Chaldeans, gods who were neither all-knowing nor all-powerful. Daniel knew that he served a God who was both of those things, yet also near to His people.

While living in exile, Daniel and his friends understood that they dwelt in a land of deep darkness, a land of idolatry, harsh kings, and the threat of death. But their security was not in a king’s decrees, or the wisdom of the Chaldeans. They found security bowing on their knees before the God of all wisdom and power. He was their true Lord and King, and in serving Him, they did not need to fear the whims of man (v.20–21).

In a remarkable turn of providence, the very lives of the wise men of the world are preserved by the intercession of Daniel (v.24). Like Christ’s parable of the mustard seed (Matthew 13:31–32), where even the birds of the air find rest in the branches, so also the providence of God is the foundation upon which even the kingdoms of the earth must rely, for even they belong to Him.

I find that I’m constantly inundated with the seeming wisdom of the world, but it is a wisdom that falls far short of the kingdom of God. The promise that Daniel foretold in Nebuchadnezzar’s dream is one that is even now being fulfilled: “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign forever and ever” (Revelation 11:15). In light of such revelation, we, too, may have confidence as we approach the throne of grace, knowing that we serve a God who is not far off, but has drawn near to us, even taking on flesh and dwelling with us. This God, this Christ, is the true King of kings.

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18 thoughts on "Daniel"

  1. Sheila Ezell says:

    Amen!

  2. Jennifer Anapol says:

    I love that when we ask, we receive, when we seek we find. If we ask God for wisdom, he will give it to us. I love that we serve a God who listens to our prayers and cares about what we care about.

  3. DG says:

    I never thought of reading the He commentary also! I think I will start doing that.

  4. DG says:

    Since most of us have no ability from God to tell the future, change the future, or see someone else’s dreams, I feel that Socrates’ statement is so true. It feels like what I tell the atheist in my home-who are we that God should let us know everything? Things like how the earth formed, how the dinosaurs and evolution fit in. I don’t think science is wrong, but I believe the creation account 100 percent. I don’t believe all cancer will be cured this side of heaven. God is not going to let our finite human brains put all the pieces together! He is God and we are not. We will never stop learning until Jesus comes back and maybe then we get to see all the answers.

  5. Natasha R says:

    Today’s study is a great reminder that as long as I approach situations intending to glorify God, the Holy Spirit will direct my thoughts, words and actions.

  6. Kimberly Pearson says:

    I’m reading today’s passage from The Voice Bible. Daniel 2:34-35 goes like this “As you were watching, a special stone was quarries and cut, but not by human hands. The divinely hewn stone began to move; it struck the statue on its iron and clay feet and smashed them to pieces. Suddenly, the entire statue collapsed……the divinely hewn stone that struck the statue became a mountain that filled the whole earth” (my….. in the middle). That passage seemed like such a foretelling of Jesus as the stone is divinely rolled from his tomb!

  7. NanaK says:

    Praying that as I go through the normal routine of my day, I will seek God, and seek to glorify Him through all that I think, say, and do, “knowing that we(I) serve a God who is not far off, but has drawn near to us(me), even taking on flesh and dwelling with us(me). This God, this Christ, is the true King of kings.”

  8. Sarah says:

    What really hit me in the first passage is how Daniel gave God all the credit, again and again. I am not a person to loudly exclaim, in a group of people, “Praise Jesus” or even “Thank God” when “something good” happens. (Now that I think about it, I was told as a child that saying “Thank God” was using the Lord’s name in vain, and, well, I guess that admonition stuck–although I think it’s petty and legalistic.) I’ve had some wonderful things happen lately, but when friends comment, at the most I may say, “I’m so blessed” or “I’m so thankful.” But Daniel! He gives this amazing introduction, giving ALL the glory and credit to God before, during, and after this event. And he does it without sounding crazy or overzealous. I struggle with being more publicly vocal about giving God glory and honor and praise for the blessings in my life. Definitely something for me to ponder as I read Daniel’s words!

  9. Monica Davis says:

    I love ho Daniel gathered his prayer circle of brothers and sought the lord!

  10. Searching says:

    Yes, Angie! I always read both sites.

    This particularly struck me from He Reads Truth today:

    “Daniel’s life is a reminder that there is another way, a way that sees living in a foreign land with other gods not as a hardship but as a training ground for deeper faith. May we all keep this perspective, for we all, like Daniel, are far from home.”

    I no longer recognize the world in which we live. Other “gods” abound. Just when I think that I’ve seen things go off the rails as much as they possibly could, there’s another headline with something even more extreme, violent, perverse, neglectful, you name it.

    Lord Jesus, help us keep our focus on you and let us use this time we have here as “a training ground for deeper faith.”

    1. Nancy Hubbard says:

      Absolutely!

      1. Rebecca Miller says:

        R

  11. Angie says:

    Ladies, after posting, since I had a few minutes I went to the He Reads Truth site and read their notes on Daniel. If you have time…it. is. so. powerful!

  12. Angie says:

    Daniel had every reason to be bitter. He was taken from Light into darkness at a very young age.
    Stolen from a family that loved and honored Yahweh, taken to a place where magicians, mediums, sorcerers and Chaldeans together with a multitude of false gods were respected and honored.
    Instead of being bitter though, he became better.
    He became strong in his dependence of God.
    He became strong in his faithful trust of the Almighty.
    He became strong in his humility that he was nothing, but God, his God the All-powerful.
    The tests started with what to eat, and gradually Daniel and his friends grew in their love, faith, and devotion to the One true God,
    the only true God, Yahweh.
    He didn’t panic, he prayed.
    He didn’t revel in the reward for the answer, he reveled in the God who reveals and gave God all the glory.
    (I love his words, “As for me, this mystery has been revealed to me, NOT because I have more wisdom than anyone living…he never became confused thinking it was about him)
    It wasn’t about his gain, (not even the gain of his life), it was about the glory to God.
    This was one, of several times, King Nebuchadnezzar would be allowed a glimpse of God and declare…”Your God is indeed God!”

    So, today Colossians 3:23-24 is our turn: “Whatever you do, do it from the heart, as something done for the Lord and not for people, knowing that you will receive the reward of an inheritance from the Lord. You serve the Lord Christ.”
    May our hearts be so saturated with Jesus Christ that every thought, every choice, every work, every word, humbly serve Him with the result of honor and glory to His name.

  13. Churchmouse says:

    Nebuchadnezzar has lost his mind. A dream troubles him and he makes an impossible demand. His “wise men” are threatened with execution unless they can both reveal the dream itself and its interpretation. What?!? As the wise men are quaking, knees knocking, Daniel faces this situation as he faces all situations: he turns to His God. The lives of Daniel and his three friends are on the line also. Daniel recruits his friends to join with him in prayer, seeking the Lord’s help and intervention. He seeks God not so much to save his own neck but to bring God glory. Daniel’s God does not disappoint. The wise men live, Nebuchadnezzar bows and Daniel and his friends are promoted. An impossible situation is reversed. Nebuchadnezzar loses his mind and Babylon gains a glimpse of the wisdom of Israel’s God.

    May it be my habit to turn to the Lord in my impossible situations. May I reign in my crazy thoughts and fall to my knees in worship and prayer. May my desire not just be for my rescue but that God would be glorified. May I seek His wisdom. He will not fail or disappoint.

  14. Kristen says:

    My coworker that passed away gave me the verses above from Luke 12. I was getting an award, and was nervous about speaking in front of everyone. I gave God the glory, because I couldn’t do anything without Him! I love hearing about the Sovereignty if God! He sets one up and takes one down. I am reading s book called: None Like Him by Jen Wilkins. She talks about 10 ways God is different from us and why that’s a good thing. You may just be in awe if you read it!

    1. Shawn Parks says:

      God’s wisdom. (Sighing with admiration!). I have been praying for an hour that God provide my message when I stand before every teacher and administrator in our county to deliver the “Teacher of the Year” message to kick off the new school year. Yesterday—Hezekiah spoke before an unreceptive audience. Today God provided Daniel with the humanly impossible words of wisdom and Luke reminds me that God will put the message in my mouth, and Kristen, you affirmed the same message! Thank you, Lord for always hearing my prayers and always answering me in your great abundance. I will wait on you! Thank you for sharing, Kristen!

      1. Susan Merritt says:

        Best of wishes!