Friday, September 26, 2014

Daniel Lesson 4 Nebuchadnezzar's Dream Interpreted

Many of our new ladies may not know that I a bit of a rock hound. It started when I taught Rocks and Minerals third grade. Our field trip to the gem mines. Each child picked up a rock and donated it to our rock fountain. That year as I worked on my National Board Certification I went to a conference over Christmas break at Western Carolina. This photo is the wall of frozen ice lining the highway. My love is to study nature and the natural gems our Lord created.
When CBS met at Lutheran Chapel we did a study of Revelation. A former ATD took glass marbles and made a tower of colors for the twelve foundation stones in New Jerusalem. It so inspired me that I searched for the twelve gemstones listed in the chapter. From that I fashioned a Revelation 21 bracelet and later a necklace using the stones from the text in the Bible. Hope you are looking forward to the study of Revelation and Daniel is giving us a foretaste tonight of the latter days and Christ’s reign. Prayer
Dream Interpretation    Lesson 4~Daniel 2:24-49
·        Omniscient God in Heaven
o   All knowing, He knows the end from the beginning from ancient times, what is still to come. (Isaiah 46:10). 
·        Jesus the Solid Rock
o   The Messiah, the promised one
Christ’s Kingdom is Forever
25 Then Arioch brought in Daniel before the king in haste and said thus to him: “I have found among the exiles from Judah a man who will make known to the king the interpretation.”  Contrast Arioch pride with the humility of Daniel.
First the King wanted to know if Daniel could tell him the dream and interpret it. Honestly Daniel reveals that no man could possibly know this.
28 but there is a God in heaven who reveals mysteries, and he has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what will be in the latter days. Two of my favorite words in the Bible are “but God!”
Daniel gave the glory to God alone. “With absolute confidence and skill, Daniel unfolded the dream while informing the king that God in heaven has the whole world in His hands and that it is He who rules the future. Nebuchadnezzar might have been surprised at having his dream revealed, but Daniel knew that God was able to reveal mysteries.” Bob Conway from Decoding Daniel
Daniel slept well unlike King Nebuchadnezzar. He did not fear for his life for he trusted in God. Can we do less with our daily concerns and irrational fears?

30 But as for me, this mystery has been revealed to me, not because of any wisdom that I have more than all the living, but in order that the interpretation may be made known to the king, and that you may know the thoughts of your mind.
31 “You saw, O king, and behold, a great image. This image, mighty and of exceeding brightness, stood before you, and its appearance was frightening. 32 The head of this image was of fine gold, its chest and arms of silver, its middle and thighs of bronze, 33 its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of clay. 34 As you looked, a stone was cut out by no human hand, and it struck the image on its feet of iron and clay, and broke them in pieces. 35 Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver, and the gold, all together were broken in pieces, and became like the chaff of the summer threshing floors; and the wind carried them away, so that not a trace of them could be found.
But the stone that struck the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth.
Warren Weisbe in his book “Be Resolute” four things we know to be true
1.     God is in control and Christ’s kingdom will last forever. As we read last week in verse 21 “he removes kings and sets up kings;”
2.      Earthly rulers and human endeavors decline as time goes on
3.      The difficulty for things to hold together at the end of the age
4.      Jesus will return and destroy his enemies and establish his kingdom

Dr. Renald Showers, in his book 'The Most High God', writes 
'Babylon used gold extensively in its buildings, images and shrines. Even walls and buildings were overlaid with gold...  In ancient times silver signified money. Medo-Persia became noted for basing its power on money... (Ann’s comment-remember the thirteen pieces of silver paid Judas’ betrayal of Jesus.”)The Greeks developed this metal (bronze) highly and used it extensively... Ancient Rome was noted for its use of iron in its military weaponry.'
As we gaze at the statue starting at the top gold is the most value element but very soft and 10 times the atomic weight of  clay; silver five times heavier than clay. Moving in descending order the metals silver, bronze, iron are less costly but greater strength is depicted as we move down the statue. Wiersbe says the statue was actually top-heavy. “From age to age nations and kingdoms appear strong and durable but they're always in danger of falling over and crashing.
Each section of the image represents proportionally the duration of four empires from the shortest to the longest.
First, the head is the shortest duration: Gold - Babylonian Empire (606-539 BC)
Second, Silver Chest and Arms - Medes and Persian Empire (539-330 BC)
Third, belly Thighs of Bronze - Greek Empire (330-63 BC)
Fourth, Legs of Iron , which are the longest - Roman Empire (63 BC - 476 AD)
In A.D. 455, the Western Roman Empire fell to the Vandals, and in A.D. 1453, the Eastern Roman Empire fell to the Ottomans. Bob Conway from Decoding Daniel
Feet of Iron & Clay - Revised Roman Empire/European Union present until Jesus returns
Ladies, who was looking for a place to write in the fifth kingdom on the chart in your lesson?

I thoroughly enjoyed learning about Alexander the Great. New facts taught me as influential and as great a warrior as he was, he only reigned only 13 years, dying at age 32. He never lost a battle and was responsible for spreading the Greek language and culture through the land, may be the reason the New Testament was written in Greek. After his death his four generals divided the empire.
The feet of partly iron and partly clay symbolize the changing of rulers and empires.  The weakness was not located in the iron legs (Ancient Rome), but in the feet and toes.
But when Christ returns his Kingdom will last Forever
 Daniel 2:41 And as you saw the feet and toes, partly of potter's clay and partly of iron, it shall be a divided kingdom, but some of the firmness of iron shall be in it, just as you saw iron mixed with the soft clay42 And as the toes of the feet were partly iron and partly clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly brittle43 As you saw the iron mixed with soft clay, so they will mix with one another in marriage,[c] but they will not hold together, just as iron does not mix with clay.  (Makes me think of oil and water.)
Nebuchadnezzar kingdom was vast and wide. On the map you can see the green area marking the Babylonian Empire. The red trail shows the distance the Hebrews had to travel to their captivity. He was dazzle about the brilliance of the gold and precious metals that the image was standing on feet of iron and clay.

Representing the present through the time when Jesus returns the ten toes of mixed with iron and clay show the deterioration of sovereignty. WW p.41 “Clay robs iron its ability to hold things together. Society today is held together by treaties that can be broken, promises that can be ignored, traditions it can be forgotten, organizations that can be disbanded, and money making in a process that can fail--all of it iron mixed with Clay! Man at his best is Clay for God made them from the dust of the earth Genesis 1:26.”  
The difficulty for things to hold together at the end of the age will be covered later in Daniel 7:23–24 and Revelation 17:12-14

44 And in the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed, nor shall the kingdom be left to another people. It shall break in pieces all these kingdoms and bring them to an end, and it shall stand forever45 just as you saw that a stone was cut from a mountain by no human hand, and that it broke in pieces the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver, and the gold. A great God has made known to the king what shall be after this. The dream is certain, and its interpretation sure.”
47 The king answered and said to Daniel, “Truly, your God is God of gods and Lord of kings, and a revealer of mysteries, for you have been able to reveal this mystery.” 
Jesus will return and destroy his enemies and establish his kingdom.
Now we will talk about the Rock of my Salvation. Many songs of our faith about the rock. So many verses in the Bible are about stones and rocks. One author found 14 instances of in scripture referring to Jesus. Here are a few for you to check out.
The stone is an image of God messiah Jesus Christ son of God
His Kingdom lasts Forever
         Psalm 118:22
         Isaiah 8:14
         Isaiah 28:16,
         Matthew 21:44
         Luke 20:17-18
         Acts 4:11
         1 Corinthians 10:4
         1 Peter 2:4-8
I will give you a just a taste of these scripture for Jesus in the gospels and Peter in his letter combines many Old Testament scriptures.

Psalm 118:22 The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.
Isaiah 8:14 And he will become a sanctuary and a stone of offense and a rock of stumbling to both houses of Israel, a trap and a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
Isaiah 28:16 therefore thus says the Lord God,
Behold, I am the one who has laid as a foundation in Zion,
    a stone, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone, of a sure foundation:
    ‘Whoever believes will not be in haste.’
Matthew 21: 44 And the one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; and when it falls on anyone, it will crush him.” (Luke  20:18)
Acts 4:11 This Jesus[a] is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone.
Jesus is a smitten stone representing the rock struck my Moses to bring forth water in Exodus 17:5-6
1 Corinthians 10: our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea,and all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ.
1 Peter 2:4-8(ESV)
As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and preciousyou yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it stands in Scripture:
6 “Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone,  a cornerstone chosen and precious,
and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.”
So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe,
“The stone that the builders rejected
    has become the cornerstone,” (Matthew 21:42)
and “A stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense.”
King Nebuchadnezzar had to learn that the wealth and prosperity of his great kingdom meant nothing. It would be reduced to chaff and be blown away. The king had to learn that he must be looking to and living for the ‘stone’ that would become a everlasting kingdom over the entire earth! Christ’s Kingdom is Forever

Psalm 89:26 ‘You are my Father, my God, and the Rock of my salvation.’
Ladies we work and save to buy perishable things which have no earthly value. My home, my family heirlooms, my car; all will be left behind when I go to meet my sweet Jesus. I've heard it said there will be no U-Haul or armored car behind a hearse. That's why we lay up treasures in heaven.

We must remember that our entire lives will pass through a fire that will test our works. Only that which is built upon the foundation of the true stone, Jesus Christ, will remain. (1 Cor 3:10-15) JesusPlusNothing
Will you choose to join Jesus Christ in His eternal kingdom?

Warren Weisbe in his bookBe Resolute
 David Jeremiah in his book “Handwriting on the Wall”

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Daniel Lesson 3

Do you have trouble sleeping or do you sleep like a baby? How many of you have dreams? Do you dream in color? Can you remember your dreams after you wake up?
This week I have had very vivid dreams, disturbing dreams. Probably not a message from God but it was scary enough to wake me up at 4:30. Medial studies show people with “high recall of their dreams have twice as many periods of wakefulness during the night and their brains reacted more to sounds while they're sleeping and awake.”
Web MD 
If you suffer from chronic lack of sleep, you may wake up with a headache. You may also feel cranky, lethargic, and even depressed. Lack of sleep impairs attention, alertness, concentration, reasoning, and problem solving. It can affect your physical health and your emotional health. No wonder Nebuchadnezzar woke up in such a snit.
How do you know if your dreams are from God?
Who else might put thoughts into your mind? In my evening devotions Quiet Reflections of Peace I was reminded “we have a powerful enemy who whispers into our thought and fuels emotion of dread, worry, helplessness and fear. “
It was not uncommon for God to speak supernaturally to His people throughout the Bible: Dreams to reveal His plan, to further His plan, and warn people in places of influence. God allowed Joseph called “the dreamer” to turn his imprisonment into an opportunity. He used his gift to achieve a high position in Pharaoh’s court which ultimately saved the nation of Israel.
 The prophet Samuel as a young child was repeatedly awakened by God with a message of warning for his mentor Eli.
God also speaks to pagan rulers and kings. In Genesis 20 God warned Abimelech king of Gerar in a dream that he dare not touch Sarah for she was the wife of Abraham. She was promised to be “mother of nations.”
During the trial of our Lord Jesus, Pilate’s wife demanded “Have nothing to do with that righteous man, for I have suffered much because of him today in a dream.” Matthew 27:19
David speaks of God’s promise Psalm 4:8 In peace I will both lie down and sleep, For You alone, O LORD, make me to dwell in safety.
Let us PRAY Father God, What a glorious image of you guarding me as I sleep. You never tire or forget to watch over me. Tonight guard my heart, guard my mind, and guard my lips as I teach. Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer. In Jesus precious name, Amen
Remember Daniel 2:4 through the seventh chapter is written in Aramaic, the language of the Babylonian court.
Nebuchadnezzar's Dream~ Daniel 2:1-23
·        An Impossible Request
·        An Answered Prayer
                        Nothing is impossible with God.  
There were some dangers to being a king in Babylon. Young Nebuchadnezzar probably slept with one eye open, fearful someone wanted his position. Babylonians believe that the gods sent messages through dreams and failure to recall your dream could mean trouble with the gods.
Dr. David Jeremiah in his book Handwriting on the Wall (p. 48) says “Nebuchadnezzar was the first gentile king to be ruler of the world. It is no coincidence that the nature of the dream was God’s plan for the times of the Gentiles.”
God communicated to a pagan king through a recurrent dream. King Nebuchadnezzar was rightfully cautious about his kingship; and his spirit was so troubled that his sleep left him.  Either the king was so fearful he forgot the dream or he was using it to test the supernatural abilities and integrity of his wise men.
2:5 “The word from me is firm: (the ESV means I have decided) if you do not make known to me the dream and its interpretation, you shall be torn limb from limb, and your houses shall be laid in ruins.    Somebody woke up grumpy.
But if you tell me the dream and explain it, you will receive from me gifts and rewards and great honor. So tell me the dream and interpret it for me.”
Nebuchadnezzar had many different groups in his council: magicians or scholars; the astrologers or stargazers; the sorcerers or mediums; and the Chaldeans who were the wise men of Babylon. These men held positions of honor and prestige in the kingdom. They were supposed to be able to interpret dreams. But their positions and education could not save them from an angry king. If the wise men of Babylon where expendable who could be safe?
Daniel 2:11“What the king asks is too difficult. No one can reveal it to the king except the gods, and they do not live among men.” 
They did not know nothing is impossible with Our God. 
Not until Jesus came to earth. John 1:14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.
Although they were still in training, King Nebuchadnezzar wanted all the men rounded up and executed.
Arioch was the captain of the king’s guard. The root of the original word “tabbah” translated guard means to slay. When he came knocking at the door of Daniel and his friends, God equipped Daniel with a calm and composed manner. “Why is the decree from the king so hasty?”
Although Nebuchadnezzar refused to grant his own seers more time, Daniel bravely asked to appear before the king to request “that he would give him time, and that he would show the king the interpretation.” For nothing is impossible with God. 
Remarkably the request was granted. Daniel did not rush to his books of learning but to his faithful friends; Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah. He asked them to seek mercies to reveal the dream to Daniel and save not only their lives but the lives of all the rest of the wise men in Babylon. These young men had to trust Daniel enough to believe God would speak through Him.
Throughout the book of Daniel we will see that Daniel and his friends are faithful in prayer to their God. Though far away from home they looked toward Jerusalem and claimed the promise that the God of the heavens would hear their prayers and answer them for His own glory. The word “secret” or the equivalent word “mystery” is used eight times in this chapter. Remember this chapter is in Raz: Aramaic, short for Raziah Meaning: Hebrew, "the Lord's secret".
Only the God of the universe could hid prophetic truth in a dream and give His servant Daniel the knowledge of the dream and the interpretation.
Because nothing is impossible with God. 
Matthew 13:10-12 The disciples came to him and asked, “Why do you speak to the people in parables?” Jesus answered them, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. 12 For to the one who has, more will be given, and he will have an abundance, but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.
Ladies, I believe this is a promise that as we study our Bibles and spend time with God daily, we will be give understanding.
What do you do when you have a dilemma that keeps you awake at night? Do you have a prayer partner who can join you in petitioning the Father on your behalf?
James 5:16 The effective fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. If you do not, I urge you for seek out “wise counsel” and commit to each other to pray for and lift each other before the throne of God. An accountability partner will also encourage you to be grounded in the Word and remind you to take your cares to the Creator of the Universe.
Will you remember nothing is impossible with God
This photo was so powerful! We pray fervently for our soldiers on foreign soil. I truly believe there is power in prayer.
Matthew 20: 19 Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”
19 During the night the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision.  I’m sure Daniel was so excited when the LORD revealed the answer that would save all the wise men in Babylon most of us would run to tell someone. We might make a beeline for the king’s court. But not Daniel first he praised the God of heaven 20 and said:
 “Blessed be the name of God forever and ever,
    to whom belong wisdom and might.
21 He changes times and seasons;
    he removes kings and sets up kings;
he gives wisdom to the wise
    and knowledge to those who have understanding;
22 he reveals deep and hidden things;
    he knows what is in the darkness,
  and the light dwells with him.

When we give our hopes and dreams to God and then leave them in His hands, we can trust His love for us to fulfill what He has planned.
Will you remember that with God all things are possible?
Dear Lord,

When we have trouble sleeping thank you that Your power and love know no limits. You take away the frantic worries in our minds and refresh our souls as we sleep. Slow down our emotion-filled mind to thoughts of praising You. Guard us safely as we travel home in Jesus name and for His glory. Amen

Friday, September 12, 2014

Daniel Chapter 1 Lesson 2

Welcome back from your first Core Discussion. Hopefully everyone had a chance to contribute. We want you to be comfortable, cared for and confident. Let us remember as we pray to Our Father God those who have died in defense of our freedom. Let us Pray
Ladies, I was a bit nervous when I realized the many authors who had written a study on Daniel and Revelation. History was not by best subject, but God gave me affirmation in my morning devotions from Isaiah 50:4
The Lord God has given me
    the tongue of those who are taught,
that I may know how to sustain
 with a word.. him who is weary.
Morning by morning He awakens;
    He awakens my ear to hear
as those who are taught.
1 Thessalonians 2: Who God calls he equips. When we were children our parents often warned us what would happen If:
·        If you keep crossing your eyes, they will stay like that.
·        If you're too sick to go to school, you're too sick to play outside.
·        If you don’t finish your dinner, you won’t get dessert.
·        If you keep climbing, you are going to fall.
Our parents were trying to teach us proper manner and good habits for living.  We know there are consequences for the things we do.
Think about the consequences of sin. The people of Israel had been warned by many prophets.  God promised blessing for obedience and curses for disobedience. In Deuteronomy 28, He warned very specifically that if His people rebelled against Him, He would allow them to be defeated by their enemies and become subjects of a foreign king. God warned about the desecration of the temple.
“Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts: Because you have not obeyed my words, behold, I will send for all the tribes of the north, declares the Lord, and for Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, my servant, and I will bring them against this land and its inhabitants, and against all these surrounding nations. 
Did they believe Him?
DANIEL Chapter 1
·        Charms of Prosperity
·        Living with Integrity
·        Blessing and Longevity
Circumstances will not determine my obedience.
How many of you have a teenage son or grandson? Can you imagine these young men being gathered up and taken to a foreign land while you stay behind in your homeland? Only the brightest and the best were chosen to live in the palace of the king and be groomed and educated in the culture of their captors.
Deported to Babylon
V. Then the king commanded Ashpenaz, his chief eunuch, to bring some of the people of Israel, both of the royal family and of the nobility, youths without blemish, of good appearance and skillful in all wisdom, endowed with knowledge, understanding learning, and competent to stand in the king's palace, and to teach them the literature and language of the Chaldeans.
Why did they allow others to remain in Jerusalem as a province with a king of his choosing Zedekiah? (Perhaps to free Jeremiah from the dungeon.)
They had taken the cream of the crop of the nobility. The plan was to submerge these Israelites in the culture, language, and history of Babylon so they had no time to think of Jerusalem and their LORD God. 
Charms of Prosperity
This is the same way the enemy distract Christians today! Athletic events, televised entertainment, possessions, gadgets, worldly pleasures, draw our focus away from God and the study of His Word. Do you think teenagers today would be impressed with rich food, fine clothes and wealth beyond measure?
Don’t we today still applaud beauty! Every year there are lists of the most beautiful women and the most eligible bachelor. Those that were best looking were not necessarily endowed with knowledge, and competent to stand in the king’s palace.
Thank goodness that is not how Jesus chose us to be His!
3 times in Deuteronomy God proclaims- For you are a people holy to the Lord your God, and the Lord has chosen you to be a people for his treasured possession, out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth. 14:7
The Lord said to Samuel, "Do not consider how handsome or tall he is... I do not look at the things people look at. Man looks at how someone appears on the outside. But I look at what is in the heart."- 1 Samuel 16:7
 Ladies God loved us on our worst day. Jesus came not just to die for you but to suffer shame and agony and pain that should have been for us. He loves us with an everlasting love. Jeremiah 31:3
Don’t let circumstances determine your obedience.
 In Babylon Daniel and his friends complied with their names being changed, their dress and their education. Most of Daniel's outward life was changed. They could his name but they couldn’t change his heart.
What is in a name? Do you know what your name means? How many of you think that definition fits you?
These Hebrew boys were named after Yahweh their one true God.
·        Daniel ("God is judge") become Belteshazzar ("May Bel protect his life")
·        Hananiah ("Yahweh is gracious") becomes Shadrach ("command of Aku")
·        Mishael ("Who is what God is") becomes Meshach ("Who is what Aku is")
·        Azariah ("Whom Yahweh helps") becomes Abed-nego ("Servant of Nebo")
Their captors changed their names to honor the Babylonian gods: Bel, Aku, and Nebo.
Your commentary and your study questions gave many Old Testament references to the laws forbidding eating certain food. When faced with the prospect of eating food offered to idols, Daniel knew he had to draw the line.  Circumstances did not determine his obedience.
Living with Integrity
But Daniel resolved ESV  or KJV But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank. Therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.
Now God had brought Daniel into favor and tender love with the prince of the eunuchs.
Daniel was seeking to honor God, now God honored Daniel by shaping the heart of the chief eunuch and the steward.  
Circumstances will not determine my obedience.
11 Then Daniel said to the steward whom the chief of the eunuchs had assigned over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah-test us for ten days then look at our appearance. We know the end of the story. But for a young man in a precarious position his integrity and faithfulness to the LORD God was rewarded with blessings.  
“When a man’s ways please the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.” Proverbs 16:7
Proverbs 21:1 says, “The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the LORD; He turns it wherever He will.” God turns hearts.
I love how God guides my teaching. A popular Christian author and pastor shared on a Christian broadcast when my ears perked up at the mention of Daniel and Babylon. “Daniel and his friends were taken out of a godly environment and had to learn to live in a secular society. We are living in secular society a post-Christian era that no longer respects a Christian values. We contributed to it the same way that Judah contributed to their captivity.”
Ladies will you agree this is true by raising your hand. Politics has no place in CBS, but we can all see our Christian values are no longer respected. And we have let it happen by not taking a stand. What are we teaching our children? How are they going to react to peer pressure in the secular world?
Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.KJV
I worry about my grandson attending his first year in middle school. A sweet lady sent her evening devotion from Spurgeon. He calls them wolves. Isn’t that what Satan is like a lion or other predator seeking to steal, kill and destroy.  Yet he is cleverly disguised as a wolf in sheep’s clothing.  If we have taught him well… Circumstances will not determine his obedience.
Blessings and Longevity
Psalm 13:18 But the Lord watches over those who fear him, those who rely on his unfailing love.
v. 17-God gave them learning and skill in all literature and wisdom, and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.
20 And in every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters that were in all his kingdom. 21 And Daniel was there until the first year of King Cyrus.
The word Babylon means 'confusion' and represents the worldly way of life. In many ways, the Christian's life is one of exile similar to Daniel and his friends. We are strangers in this world. We are just travelling through.
1 John 2:15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world. 17 And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.
So think about the effect that the world has on your life? Is there a difference between the desires of your life and of those who don’t know the Lord? Because it is fair to say that non-Christians watch you a lot more than you think. And they watch and are interested in your deeds more than your words. So be aware of your actions!
Circumstances will not determine my obedience.
9-11 brings these thoughts to mind. 2 Chronicles 7:14(ESV)
 If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.
Do we believe Him? If we, like the Israelites, continue in our sin, we shouldn’t be surprised if God allows us to experience painful consequences of sin. But we should know that even then He loves us, and He is waiting for us to repent so He can restore us.

Will you choose to obey God in spite of your circumstances?

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Wrap-up for Introduction to the book of Daniel

Welcome Back Ladies, I am Ann Sanger your Teaching Director and at this time I will deliver a wrap-up or teaching for a few minutes.  PRAY Thank you Father for your love and mercy and grace that is new every morning. Bless these women who came out tonight. Speak through me. Put a guard at my lips and bless my words I pray in the name of Your Son Jesus Christ.
Ladies most of remember Daniel from our childrens bible story of Daniels miraculous rescue from the lions den. We even had a little song:

Daniel, echo Daniel, Daniel, echo Daniel in the li, li, lions
Daniel, echo Daniel, Daniel, echo Daniel in the li, li, lions
Daniel, echo Daniel, Daniel, echo Daniel in the li, li, lions
Daniel in the lions, echo Daniel in the lions, Daniel in the lion’s den.
There are Three Points to my Introduction
      Historical Background
      Daniel the Book
      Daniel the Man
Our Theme: God is in Control

  • Historical Background

How in the world did Israel end up in this mess? What happened to God1s covenant with Abraham? Joshua led the Israelites into the Promised Land and grew into an independent nation with their own kings and mighty armies. In one word-"disobedience. After the reign of Solomon, the twelve tribes were divided into the northern kingdom ISRAEL and the southern kingdom JUDAH. The Assyrians carried ISRAEL INTO captivity in 722 BC. Then between 605 and 586 be the southern kingdom went into captivity under their famous leader Nebuchadnezzar. Only two tribes represent last remnant of God’s people. Throughout the book we will continue to call God's people Israel.
  • Daniel the Book:

The book of Daniel is unlike other books in the Old Testament.
Disputes over author and date: Though controversial and the target of non­ Christians, I refuse to enter the banter of when it was written and who wrote it. I believe Author is Daniel (12:4) and it was written 537 B.C.

Jesus references Daniel in Matthew 24:15 and that is all the proof I need.

15 “So when you see the abomination of desolation spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand), 

Jesus said it and I believe it!

The Jewish Bible divided in 3 groups the Law; The Prophets; Writings. Psalms, Proverbs, Esther, is also listed in Writings along with Daniel.

The first half of the book is largely historical telling of Daniel and his friends' life as they were raised in the temple in Babylon groomed in the culture and language of their capturers. His message was as much to the Gentile world as it was to the Jews.

Second half Daniel’s prophecies used mysterious symbols and strange images. Daniel wrote the half of his book in Hebrew as encouragement for the Jews still in Jerusalem. But he also wrote chapter in Aramaic, a language common to the Gentiles.

God told Daniel to seal up the scrolls until the end of time. Not until the Book of Revelation was one worthy to open the seven seals on the scroll.

Revelation 5:1"Then I saw in the right hand of him who sat on the throne a scroll with writing on both sides and sealed with seven seals."

  • Daniel the Man

      Ezekiel living around the same time as Daniel but he was older and lived on Jewish soil. He delivered messages from God to the Jewish people. Jeremiah also a contemporary tells us God used Nebuchadnezzar teach Israel He can use a pagan king to discipline His people.
      In the first group captured 14-15 yrs. old but he was not there when the temple was destroyed. Daniel and his friends were not treated as slaves but offered food from the King's table and educated in the palace.
      Diplomatic in refusing the rich food yet bold enough to ask as you will study in Chapter 1.
      Never wavered in his faithfulness even when his life is threatened.
      Daniel never preached a sermon but he Glorified God with his visions. Daniel rose to a position where he was comfort ble in the presence of kings.
      Lived the entire 70 years God allowed Judah' s' captivity
      Daniel lived most of his 80+ years under several different kings and rulers.
      Daniel living in a pagan land offered luxury and power yet maintained his integrity and devotion to God.

Would you choose to be a Daniel and let God be in Control of your life?

Prepare for next week. SHOW BOOK

Lesson 1-your commentary God is in Control is wonderful and explains the history and captivity of the children of Israel. It has wonderful clues to fact we may have missed. My suggestion is to read your commentary as soon as possible: over the week-end. Those 2-3 questions at the end apply to my wrap up and the commentary . It is easier to answer while it is fresh in your mind.
Lesson 2-You will read Daniel chapter 1 and answer questions each day. Work through page 9.

Be wary of using study bibles and commentaries for your answers. A commentary is only one person's understanding. Just like my teaching is one woman's understanding. We want you to spend time with God and allow his Holy Spirit to guide you to the truth.

Dear Father,

We know You have a message for those in this world living in sorrow and pain. Use us to bring the message through the hands, feet, and mouth of Your followers. Lord, You desire us to be Your light in this dark world bringing the kind of encouragement Daniel taught us. Only God can heal people weary of sin and suffering when we look to Him.