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#960

Nothing saps the Christian's vitality more than the rubbish of unholy alliances, unwholesome amusement, ungodly practices and suchlike. True separation from these will make our lives "vessels unto honor, sanctified and meet for the Master's use."

Daniel 1

Today we start a new and entirely different book - Daniel. Its setting is in "the times of the Gentiles". Luke 21:24. That covers many years. We're in it today. It started at about B.C. 607 or 2,600 years ago and will continue until the Lord appears. It all took place after the ten tribes of Israel had been taken captive by Assyria (and have never been heard of since then); the remaining two tribes, Judah and Benjamin were taken captive to Babylon by King Nebuchadnezzar. Judah was the Royal tribe; and the kings were taken too. Our chapter tells of Daniel, one of the Royal family. These four young men would have been around 17 years old.

Dan 1:3-4 The king decides to use these Hebrew captives to train, with a group of his own, with the best education. Verse 4 gives a list of 6 requirements which they had to possess. What an opportunity for these young fellows.

Dan 1:5 The king plans what they should eat... the best... the king's own menu, and, no doubt, the best wines available.

Dan 1:7 In order to help make these Hebrew captives forget their own background, all are given foreign names.

Dan 1:8 But Daniel had a secret in his heart... he belonged to GOD. He would not eat the meat that probably had been offered to idols. He would not defile himself.

Dan 1:10-14 The official is afraid to change the king's plans; he would lose his life if he did. Daniel says a remarkable thing; it wouldn't have been fair to put the responsibility on the man who would be serving the food. Daniel suggests that the man also bring him some cereals, and see how things went for ten days. Very wise suggestion.

Dan 1:15-16 The four young fellows have rosier cheeks and are fatter than all the others.

Dan 1:17 The secret is told - God honoured those who honoured Him!

Dan 1:19 Not only were they physically superior but in intelligence, they were ten times smarter!

Dan 1:21 This verse tells a lot without saying it... Nebuchadnezzar, the king had passed into history. His successor, King Belshazzar was killed by another Empire, the Medo-Persian. But the first three words of our verse tell us what the Apostle Paul said to Timothy in 2 Tim. 3:14. Take good notice of it.

#961

True Christianity alone answers the sin problem.

Daniel 2:1-30

Dan 2:1-13 King Nebuchadnezzar apparently had this dream some time earlier and has now forgotten it. All the wise men of his vast empire can't tell the meaning of his dream. But his mind is greatly troubled and he can't sleep. He is so agitated that he orders all the wise men (probably all those of chapter 1) to be killed, Daniel included.

Dan 2:14-16 Daniel goes to the king and asks for time, and promises the interpretation. What does he do? The next two verses tell the answer.

Dan 2:19-23 What does Daniel do as soon as God tells him the dream and the meaning of it? Read it.

Dan 2:26 Daniel meets the king face to face. The king asks him if he is able to tell the mystery.

Dan 2:27-30 Who gets the credit for revealing the secret?

#962

True Christianity is unique because it teaches salvation is by faith rather than by works.

Daniel 2: 31-49

Dan 2:31-45 Here we have the greatest foretelling of future political events that the world has ever known. The dream was of a high statue of brilliant and awesome appearance. There were four different materials, pure gold head, silver chest and arms, bronze belly and thighs, iron legs, its feet part iron and part clay. While he was watching it, a stone struck the great image in the feet and broke them, then, bit by bit, the whole image was smashed to pieces. Then the stone grew larger and larger till it filled the whole earth. Daniel next told the king its meaning. Four Empires would arise in the world, one following the other. The last would disappear and then arise again and be totally destroyed. All this is very important to us because, though this was written about 2,600 years ago, it is telling of events that are taking place in Europe today, the restoration of the Roman Empire.

Dan 2:44-45 The stone is explained. It is a type of the Lord Jesus who shall appear and completely destroy the revived Roman Empire (Rev. 19:13-16).

Dan 2:46-49 King Nebuchadnezzar pours honors on Daniel (but soon forgets him).

#963

We may desire to bring to the Lord a perfect work. We would like to point, when our work is done, to the beautiful ripened grain, and bound-up sheaves, and yet the Lord frustrates our plans, shatters our purposes, lets us see the wreck of all our hopes, breaks the beautiful structure we thought we were building and catches us up in His arms and whispers to us, "It's not your work I wanted, but you". (2 Corinthians 8:5)

Daniel 3

Dan 3:1,6 This mighty and proud king has set up an image and ordered everyone to bow down to it. If anyone refused, they would be thrown into a furnace. What would you have done?

Dan 3:12 The three faithful friends of Daniel will not bow.

Dan 3:17-18 What an answer to the king's command! They knew the Lord could deliver them from the furnace, but they didn't know whether He would or not. Then they say that if He doesn't, He would deliver them out of the king's hand some other way! How wonderful! We may be laughed at, or we may not get very far ahead in our job, but it is worth it all to be true to the Lord.

Dan 3:23-27 What God does for them! He will not leave you, even though you too may find yourself in a position of real suffering for His sake.

#964

Were not for sin, death would have no beginning. Were not for death, sin would have no ending.

Daniel 4

This chapter is very serious for us all, because it shows that God is mighty and involves Himself in the affairs of men and hears everything we say. False worship is followed by kingly pride.

Dan 4:1-3 This same king has not learned anything, in spite of all the things told of in the previous 3 chapters. Notice how full of himself he is.

Dan 4:3-18 He has had another dream, obviously sent by God. He is told that he himself was the great tree to be cut down. Daniel tells him to turn from his wicked sins and reform his ways, for perhaps the punishment might be put off. Does he pay any attention? We'll see later.

Dan 4:19-27 Daniel tells him what the dream meant. He had plenty of warning, but he is too proud to pay attention.

Dan 4:28-37 God gives him a whole year to repent! (Merciful God). But no. So his mind leaves him and he becomes like an animal for seven years. Each one of us has to do with God, and we should be more serious about life. God mercifully brings the king back and he gives praise to God. We hear no more of him.

#965

The storm that blows reveals the strength of the roots. (Colossians 2:7)

Daniel 5

About 25 years go by... Nebuchadnezzar is gone... his grandson, Belshazzar, is king.

Dan 5:1-4 Belshazzar has reverted to his gods and makes a great banquet to them, using the holy cups stolen out of God's temple at Jerusalem, by Nebuchadnezzar.

Dan 5:5-9 In the middle of the drunken party, suddenly something happens which frightens everyone, including the king.

Dan 5:10-12 The queen enters and tells the king that there is a man able to tell the meaning of the words written on the wall.

Dan 5:13-16 Daniel is brought in. (How soon they had forgotten about him!) Great rewards are promised him.

Dan 5:17-29 Daniel starts to talk. He has to tell the story of Nebuchadnezzar as if no one had even heard of it! (Just like people today, not listening). Daniel tells that the end of the first great world empire, Babylon, has come.

Dan 5:30-31 The judgment falls! The king is killed, the Empire gone.

#966

The testimony against evil should be in our own walk and ways.

Daniel 6

A new Empire has been formed, the Medo-Persian with Darius as head, but Cyrus as king (1:21).

Dan 6:1-9 Daniel receives a high position, which causes jealously among the native leaders. They can only find fault with him in "the law of his God" - verse 5. So they ask the king to sign a law which would forbid anyone to pray to anyone except Darius for 30 days. If anyone did, he was to be thrown into a lion's den.

Dan 6:10-17 When Daniel knew that the law was signed, this is what he immediately did. These men find him in the act, and figuring that they have won a victory, report it to Darius. The laws of this Empire could never be changed (V. 15). Darius is very upset because he respects Daniel, but cannot do anything. Daniel is cast into the lion's den.

Dan 6:16 Darius had respect for Daniel and confidence in God. Read verse 4 again.

Dan 6:18-20 The king's feelings, could he sleep? Did he sleep in that morning? Notice the wording of his question to Daniel.

Dan 6:21-22 Daniel answers with confidence toward God and toward the king.

Dan 6:23 What about his wounds?

Dan 6:24-25 Awful retribution (the first section of the book ends here).

#967

Fellowship in the heart with Christ keeps the sense of our standing in Christ steady and is the saving power practically in our walk.

Daniel 7

The last section of the book begins. Now we will read of the visions that Daniel has and the revelations he receives from God. Chapters 7 and 8 actually took place before chapter 6. In chapter 2 we read of the 4 world empires, here we read of the same four, this time as 4 different beasts.

Dan 7:1-8 In chapter 2 we saw the 4 empires as man sees them, as a huge monument to his pride. Here we see these empires as God sees them, as beasts...dreadful. The first represents the Babylonian empire, as a lion. The second empire as a bear, the Medo-Persian. The third, as a leopard, the Grecian. The fourth, which was like no living animal, the Roman empire. It had 10 horns (10 kings - V. 24).

Dan 7:9-10 Somewhat a description of what is written in Revelation 19:11-17 and refers to when the Roman Empire is restored, but finally utterly destroyed by the Lord Jesus at His appearing . You may remember reading in chapter 2:44,45 of the stone. We're close to it now, because the 10 kingdoms of Europe are being formed before our eyes into the revived Roman Empire.

Dan 7:11 Refers to this revived Roman Empire (Rev. 19:20.)Doesn't this stir you into realizing that the Lord is coming any day?

Dan 7:13-14 The Lord's appearing. Not the rapture.

Dan 7:17-22 The people who believe this "gospel of the kingdom", to be preached after we are gone to glory.

Dan 7:23-28 The dreadful days ahead. But when the Lord appears, all these unsaved people shall be cast into hell. Then the Lord Jesus begins His reign over the earth for 1,000 years, the Millennium.

#968

Be not afraid of consequences. If we do right, God will take care of them.

Daniel 8

The 2nd and 3rd of the four empires are again told of here in verses 3 and 4 (the second empire) and verse 5(the third - the Grecian empire).

Dan 8:8 is after "Alexander the great" dies (aged 32) the Grecian, his empire is divided among 4 of his generals.

Dan 8:9-12 A man called Antiochus Epiphenes is the "little horn". (He lived during the silent years between the Old and the new Testament).

Dan 8:17,19 Refers to the future.

Dan 8:23-25 Also are future. The Prince of Princes is the Lord Jesus.

#969

Nothing so injuries the soul as controversy.

Daniel 9

Dan 9:5-10 God's people had sinned, and because of this they had been carried into captivity, and Daniel among them. But from what we have read already, Daniel was a faithful, praying young man. Notice his confession. He does not point the finger at others, but says over and over, that WE have sinned. Let us remember this.

Dan 9:15-18 The tribes of Judah and Benjamin were in captivity in Babylon because they had sinned. Their city, Jerusalem and God's temple in it, were in ruins. This is what saddened Daniel.

Dan 9:20 The Lord hears a prayer like that!

Dan 9:23-27 These remarkable verses tell in great detail, the coming of the Lord Jesus, His being cut off, and the future sorrow and suffering of His people.

Dan 9:25 "Messiah the Prince"; but in the next verse the "prince" is the Beast.

#970

All we need to expect is to be kept faithful to the end. If we are seeking to make a noise in the world, or raise a testimony, we shall be disappointed, but if we are content to walk humbly with our God, we shall have reason to rejoice and our labor shall not be in vain. (C.H.M.)

Daniel 10

Dan 10:2 The vision that Daniel saw told of future suffering for his people, the Jews, and he mourned for 3 weeks. It is good for us to feel very deeply the sorrow that lies ahead for any who reject the Lord Jesus. Twice Daniel is called "a man greatly beloved".

Dan 10:21 Michael was the angel of the people of Israel.

#971

If our walk dos not agree with our words, we should say very little.

Daniel 11

The first 34 verses of this chapter are now history. At the time they were written, it was all future!

Dan 11:36-37 You have heard the word "Antichrist". This is the person described in these verses. He will be a Jew, a king in Israel. He will deceive millions (after we believers are gone to glory).

Dan 11:40-45 Two other powerful men shall appear (after we are gone), but both shall be destroyed by the Lord when He comes in glory (Rev. 19:11-21).

#972

We accomplish much more by what we are than by what we say.

Daniel 12

Dan 12:1 Michael is here called "the great prince"; (See also Rev. 12:7).

Dan 12:4 Daniel is told to seal the book, because it would be many years before these things would be fulfilled. The time is near when these purposes of God will be fulfilled. Do we realize that we are living just before these prophecies shall be completed?

 

by Norman Berry - 1911-2001
Published by Mario Persona contato@mariopersona.com.br


 
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