November 17. 2020

Then Daniel returned to his house and explained the matter to his friends Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, urging them to plead for mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery, so that Daniel and his friends would not be killed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. During the night, the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision, and he blessed the God of heaven and declared: “Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, for wisdom and power belong to Him. – Daniel 2:17-20 BSB


All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (2 Timothy 3:16-17. Ephesians 2:10) I personally listen to a lot of scripture daily, in many different forms.  As a general rule, I only listen to Christian music and Christian teachings. I do my best to control what I put into my mind. Remember to KEEP IT SIMPLE SOLDIER (KISS).  The enemy’s number 1 weapon formed against us is Confusion.  When people are confused they do not STEP UP, SPEAK UP, ACT UP, HOLD UP, or SHUT UP- at the right times. There are only 2 Views, 2 frames, 2 filters of this experience called life: World View and the GOD VIEW.  You are either operating under the GOD OPERATING SYSTEM (GOS) or you are operating under the FLESH OPERATING SYSTEM (FOS). Thomas Sowell in his book, The Conflict of Visions calls it the ‘Constrained Vision’ and the ‘Unconstrained Vision’.  The 2 political divisions today are Conservative and Liberal, and the 2 different visions Sowell talks about fall into both those categories as well.  Because of my OPERATING SYSTEM, I only listen to books that are by authors who share a similar ‘God Operating System’, GOS.  I also listen to a lot of good preachers daily.  God uses many different people to speak to me.  God does not use the same ones all the time- I believe that is so that I do not get the false thought that they are teaching me, but rather the Holy Spirit is teaching me, God is just using that Pastor today, to specifically reach me.  Some of the Pastors who continually speak into my life are John McArthur, Charles Stanley, Ravi Zacharias, Michael Youseff, Greg Laurie, Alistair Begg and 2 local Pastors: Robert Jeffers and Richard Ellis. In addition to the daily sermons I listen to, there are 2 gentlemen who are already with the Lord, but by the gift of recordings, I can still hear whenever I choose to listen.  What is unique about them is they went through the Bible verse by verse before their transition and now I get to listen to them over and over until my translation, or until Jesus calls us up, into the clouds to meet him: Chuck Smith with The Word for Today and J. Vernon McGee with a seat on the Bible Bus as he goes THRU THE BIBLE.  

Leader, Chuck Smith in his lecture on Daniel 2 makes some outstanding factual points about Daniel’s prayer in Daniel 2, which gives us plenty to consider. Chuck says the following about the prayer here in Daniel 2. In this prayer Daniel references no less than 15 references to scripture. He quotes from the Psalms, Exodus, Genesis, 2 Chronicles, Job (2-3 times), as well as Isaiah. This shows us, first of all, that he had a tremendous working knowledge of the scriptures. Secondly it tells us many of the scriptures had been canonized and accepted as God’s word and studied as such. We also know from chapter 9 that he was familiar with the book of Jeremiah, who was a bit of his contemporary. Daniel knew that Jeremiah had predicted the 70 years of captivity in Babylon, and knew that their time, the 10- 7’s, was just about up. “In the first year of Darius son of Xerxes, a Mede by descent, who was made ruler over the kingdom of the Chaldeans — in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, understood from the sacred books, according to the word of the LORD to Jeremiah the prophet, that the desolation of Jerusalem would last seventy years. So I turned my attention to the Lord God to seek Him by prayer and petition, with fasting, sackcloth, and ashes.” (Daniel 9:1-3) From this we know that Daniel had a tremendous working knowledge of the Scriptures. ‘But Daniel made up his mind that he would not defile himself with the king’s food or wine. So he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself. Now God had granted Daniel favor and compassion from the chief official’. (Daniel 1:8-9) From this we also know, Daniel was a man of Prayer, a man of Commitment- He had purposed in his heart not to defile himself. This is how Daniel lived when he was under an evil environment, called Babylon. A culture oozing with sheer decadence and the seeking of every pleasure imaginable to man- just like in today’s world, in America. Comparatively, are you living in a way that God can use you?

Conduit, we can get so wrapped up into ‘making a living’ or ‘making a name’ for ourselves in this temporal world, we forget what Kingdom we belong to in eternity. Daniel was in Babylon, but NOT of Babylon! He mixed with the world, but he did not blend into the world. He was like a CHOCOLATE CHIP, in chocolate chip cookie dough. Many workplaces, NOT ALL, offer many opportunities for personal gain; job security, retirement, paid time off, vacation, health insurance, benefits, professional achievement, fame and stature, comfortable working conditions and interesting, creative work. These are nice things to have and be rewarded with. But they tempt us with two serious evils: 1) the danger of becoming so enamored of the good material things that we become unwilling to risk these things by standing up for what God requires of us; and 2) the spiritual danger of coming to believe that the good things come as a result of our own labor or genius, or as a result of our service to some power other than God. The reason why Daniel is such a great study today, is because of how he lived his life, back then, with all the trappings of America today. Daniel demonstrates he is a man of THE WORD OF GOD, he values prayer and he is a man who is COMMITTED to God! No wonder Daniel STANDS OUT in the scripture as an OUTSTANDING character, as a man of God. NO wonder God used him, and if we follow those same three steps GOD WILL USE US! The man\woman that God uses today is similarly- one of COMMITMENT, one of Prayer and one of THE WORD, not the world! The Time IS NOW to become that person of God!


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