Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Tuesday - March 4 - Tiffany

Today's passage from the Bible In a Year Reading Plan is Numbers 7-8, Psalm 45, Luke 1
Today's scripture focus is Daniel 2:31-49
31 “Your Majesty looked, and there before you stood a large statue—an enormous, dazzling statue, awesome in appearance. 32 The head of the statue was made of pure gold, its chest and arms of silver, its belly and thighs of bronze, 33 its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of baked clay. 34 While you were watching, a rock was cut out, but not by human hands. It struck the statue on its feet of iron and clay and smashed them. 35 Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver and the gold were all broken to pieces and became like chaff on a threshing floor in the summer. The wind swept them away without leaving a trace. But the rock that struck the statue became a huge mountain and filled the whole earth.
36 “This was the dream, and now we will interpret it to the king. 37 Your Majesty, you are the king of kings. The God of heaven has given you dominion and power and might and glory; 38 in your hands he has placed all mankind and the beasts of the field and the birds in the sky. Wherever they live, he has made you ruler over them all. You are that head of gold.
39 “After you, another kingdom will arise, inferior to yours. Next, a third kingdom, one of bronze, will rule over the whole earth. 40 Finally, there will be a fourth kingdom, strong as iron—for iron breaks and smashes everything—and as iron breaks things to pieces, so it will crush and break all the others. 41 Just as you saw that the feet and toes were partly of baked clay and partly of iron, so this will be a divided kingdom; yet it will have some of the strength of iron in it, even as you saw iron mixed with clay. 42 As the toes were partly iron and partly clay, so this kingdom will be partly strong and partly brittle. 43 And just as you saw the iron mixed with baked clay, so the people will be a mixture and will not remain united, any more than iron mixes with clay.
44 “In the time of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever. 45 This is the meaning of the vision of the rock cut out of a mountain, but not by human hands—a rock that broke the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver and the gold to pieces.
“The great God has shown the king what will take place in the future. The dream is true and its interpretation is trustworthy.”
46 Then King Nebuchadnezzar fell prostrate before Daniel and paid him honor and ordered that an offering and incense be presented to him. 47 The king said to Daniel, “Surely your God is the God of gods and the Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries, for you were able to reveal this mystery.
48 Then the king placed Daniel in a high position and lavished many gifts on him. He made him ruler over the entire province of Babylon and placed him in charge of all its wise men. 49 Moreover, at Daniel’s request the king appointed Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego administrators over the province of Babylon, while Daniel himself remained at the royal court.
I read through MacArthur's sermons for studying this passage, and highly recommend you do as well.
In this dreams of Nebuchadnezzar, he saw the physical kingdom of God appear and overtake all the fallen world empires. Christ returns and sets up a physical, political empire that rests upon his shoulders.
And when this is explained to him, Nebuchadnezzar is completely overwhelmed by the massive awesomeness of Daniel's God, of OUR God. And because he doesn't know how to reach Daniel's God, he worships Daniel and offers him all sorts of honors and rewards. And (and I love this) once Daniel is given some power, he brings along his boys - Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. 
MacArthur makes an interesting point - Daniel never strives for any of this, he simply follows God and is given great power.
I don't know that God will always put you in places of power simply because you follow Him, but I do know He will bless you.
Though it definitely won't always be easy.
Tomorrow's scripture focus: Daniel 3
Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage passage: Numbers 9-10; Psalm 46; Luke 2

1 comment:

TammyIsBlessed said...

I love how God just outright tells the king what's going to happen in the future. I liked Pritchard's summation....
The historical outline looks like this:

Head Gold Babylon (612-539 BC)

Chest Silver Medo-Persia (539-331 BC)

Belly/Thighs Bronze Greece (331-63 BC)

Legs Iron Rome (63 BC-476 AD)

Verses 41-43 explain the feet and toes made partly of iron and partly of clay. I believe this refers to the breakup of the Roman Empire into the countries that now make up Europe and the Mediterranean basin—some strong and some weak.

It is highly significant that no world empire ever arose after the Roman Empire broke up. It is out of the old Roman Empire that what we call “Western Civilization” arose. In a sense though the Roman Empire no longer exists, its influence is still felt through all the nations that came out of the territory it once ruled. And “Western Civilization” itself (which includes the United States in a broad sense) traces its history in large part back to ancient Rome and Greece.

Again, note that when the stone hits the statue, it doesn’t hit the head, the chest, the thighs, or the legs, but strikes the feet and toes of iron mixed with clay. I believe this means that the stone (which represents Christ coming back to the earth to establish his kingdom) will smash the governments of mankind as they are allied together in the Last Days under the leadership of the person the Bible calls the Antichrist.