Click here for today’s reading and be blessed http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Daniel%2010-12&version=NIV
AMAZING….we are coming to the end of yet another Book of the Bible. I have to say…although I can BARELY grasp all that is in Daniel… I still LOVE this book. I have to tell you upfront that I have to rely on my mentor from last year a LOT for this reading because like I said…I BARELY can grasp all that is in Daniel. We see the incredible characteristics of Our God who LOVES us deeply. And we see the pure characteristics of a man, Daniel who loved the Lord with all his being!! What an example the Lord has given us in the OT to show us how to live for HIM. We’ve seen many prophecies come to pass and that means that ALL of God’s promises WILL COME TO PASS!! I know the Book of Daniel strengthened my faith and this year I grasped things that I barely noticed last year!! IMHO, the Bible is like a treasure chest…each time we read it…..another treasure is revealed from God to us!! HALLELUJAH!!!
Chapter 10 — In chapter 7 Gabriel came and interpreted the vision Daniel had. Today Gabriel brings Michael with him to let him know his prayers were heard!!! Have you ever had an encounter with one of God’s angels? This last vision was given to Daniel after the Jewish people were allowed to leave captivity. It was as if a veil had been lifted from Daniel’s eyes and he was able to see the angels and powers that were going on around him then…… AND THAT GO ON around us TODAY!!! One scripture that stood out to me today as well as last year when I read this was Daniel 10:10-14. It reminded me of when I read two fiction books by Frank Peretti which were “This Present Darkness” and “Piercing The Darkness”. God sent a powerful spiritual being to Daniel who had been detained for 21 days due to the battle in the Persian kingdom. I will call him a warrior angel who wanted Daniel to know that his prayers had been heard from the very first moment he uttered them. His prayers were not ignored or put on the bottom of a prayer list. God and His angels had given them prime attention (just as He does all of our prayers), but due to the spiritual battle it took 21 days for the angel to get to him. WOW!!! Think about that when you are praying and begin to feel as if your prayers have not been heard. Of course there are times when God’s answer is NO. However, sometimes the answer is Yes and other times it is WAIT. This brings me great comfort knowing that our prayers are heard from day one.
I was also touched that although Daniel was the ONLY one who saw the vision of the angels … the other men with him KNEW there was a presence and flew the coop — “such terror overwhelmed them that they fed and hid themselves. So I was left alone…” Daniel 10:7-8 I am assuming that the reason Daniel was the only one who could see the angel was because of his faithfulness to prayer, fasting, and being a humble servant of the Most High God, but the Scripture does not tell us why…just that it happened. Reading about the others who ran away…did bring a chuckle. They KNEW something was there!!
Michael the Angel was watching and helping Israel. The unseen world is a powerful world. The Spiritual realm is a world of warfare and battle….good versus evil…..God versus satan….right versus wrong. Ephesians 6 talks about the Spiritual armor God wants us to put on daily so we can fight the fight with HIS Word in us, surrounding us, written on our hearts.
Ephesians 6:12 KJV states: “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
2 Corinthians 10:3-5 KJV states: “For though we walk in the flesh, we do NOT war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;”
Do these Scriptures mean there is a devil behind every bush—NO WAY!! Much of the time we make wrong choices choose to think wrong thoughts, or choose to hang around people who are not healthy for us…… and then we end up making choices and have to live with the consequences. God can and does use all things for the good for those who believe in HIM (Romans 8:28.) To me the important thing in these Scriptures is that we know we are in a Spiritual battle and we have an enemy who WANTS to “kill, steal, and destroy us” (John 10:10) BUT in that same verse—Jesus says “BUT I came that you may live life to the full.” Does this mean satan is stronger than God….NO WAY!! It simply means he is cunning, he can read our body language and knows where we are vulnerable. How did Jesus deal directly with satan….HE SPOKE THE WORD …GOD’S WORD….THE SAME WORD WE ARE TO USE!! And ABOVE ALL…we KNOW how the book ends…we KNOW who wins….regardless of what you are going through….REMEMBER how the story ends.
Chapter 11 – IF you are a note taker and write in your Bible like I do, you might want to grab your pen and your Bible to write these things in your margin so next year when you are reading this you will remember what’s going on. Following the death of Alexander the Great in 331 B.C. the Greek empire was divided into 4 regions:
- Asia Minor (Turkey)
These prophecies from Daniel are 200 years BEFORE the Greek Empire was even thought about!!! AND these prophecies from Daniel are nearly 400 years BEFORE any of these kings were even born!!! What we are reading here is SOOOO important; through these prophecies we get a glimpse of what happened between the Old Testament and the New Testament. They may be called “The Silent Years” because prophets did not speak BUT it is a time where God can be boldly seen. Here are some things you may want to star or highlight as you read them:
- Vs 2 The 3 kings from Persia were Cambyses, Gaumaa, and Darius. The richest most Powerful king was Xerxes (pronounced Zerk Sees).
- Vs 3 This is Alexander the Great and the 4 divisions are Greece, Asia Minor (Turkey), Syria and Egypt.
- Vs 4 The king of the South is Ptolemy, and one of his commanders is Seleucus.
- Vs 6 the daughter is Bernice, from Ptolemy, was given in marriage to Antiochus and she was murdered.
- Vs 7 One of family line is the Brother of Bernice, Ptolemy III.
- Vs 10 The 2 sons are Seleucus III and Antiochus III
- Vs 21-45 This is Antiochus IV Epiphanes (pronounced Anti Oh Kus). He is called by the Jews a “Mad Man”. He is this Antiochus that is a foreshadow of the Antichrist. Here he is called a contemptible person.
The King who exalted himself. We will see Daniel’s prophecies being fulfilled in his current time and in the silent years. BUT it also needs to be studied as eschatology/End Times as well.
Chapter 12 – There is so much in chapter 12 and this Book is not necessarily about us. It was written specifically for the Jewish people with a PROMISE of a fulfilled plan. Ultimately there will be restoration for HIS Chosen People. HOWEVER when you read the last verse in Chapter 12….. substitute YOUR NAME in that verse and KNOW as a BELIEVER that you and I KNOW Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Savior. Now that IS something about each of us personally!!! That is something totally worth giving THANKS and PRAISE to our LORD and SAVIOR right now…today!!!
Interestingly verses 4 and 9 are in regard to the Scroll of Prophecy of End Times. The Prophecies are sealed and will not be added to. (Remember God tells us we are not to add one word or take away one word from HIS Scripture!!) This is referring to what we will read in Revelation. So…HOW do we know the Bible is COMPLETE? Because God told us so!! 🙂
Sharing HIS love and giving THANKS to our AWESOME God,
Click here for today’s reading http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Daniel%207-9&version=NIV
WOW – SO much to take in and I wish I could truly grasp it all, but I’ll just jump in and share what I can to see if we can understand it a little more (line upon line, precept upon precept.) I would love to hear what the Lord has shown you as you have searched HIS Word.
Interestingly, this chapter chronologically takes place BEFORE “the writing on the wall.” In the three chapters we read today we read Daniel’s dream, Daniel’s vision, and Daniel’s Prayer. Daniel’s dream of the Four beasts represent the 4 Gentile Nations again. This is another prophecy with great detail like Nebuchadnezzar’s dream. His dream was from a political perspective; Daniel’s is from a MORAL perspective.
- LION: Babylon (next time you read Jeremiah 4 and 50 or Ezekiel 17 you can now note the Lion and say ohhhhhh I get it.)
- BEAR: Medo-Persia. The bear was raised on one side which is probably the dominance of Persia. The 3 ribs in the bears mouth was probably the 3 empires it consisted of ( Babylon, Egypt and Libya)
- LEOPARD: Greece. It had 4 heads and 4 wings representing with Alexander the Great died the 4 generals appointed to 4 providences. Ptolemies, Seleucids, Antigonids and Attalids. (this all happens later, During the 400 years between the Old Testament and the New Testament much of God’s work still happens. The story of the History that unfolds is not part of the Bible but the exact prophecy of it all happens with pinpoint accuracy.)
- BEAST: Rome. Ten Horns are the 10 kings that will rise from this kingdom and a little horn (Antiochus) is the little horn. (Antiochus is a forshadow of the AntiChirst)
(Note these match the statue from the Head to the 10 toes)
REWIND– Just a little recap— after the 70 years in exile (prophesied and fulfilled), King Cyrus conquered Babylon (also prophesied and fulfilled.) Regardless of whether you look at the animals listed in Daniel’s vision or you look at the statue, you KNOW that this Cyrus must be from Medio-Persia. Cyrus will release all the Jews so they can go back to Jerusalem. When they are released only a few actually chose to leave Babylon and return to Jerusalem (remember an entire generation had already passed during their exile and captivity.) Alexander the Great, from Greece, will enter the picture and conquer what seemed to be EVERYONE and spread the Greek culture to everyone (this movement is called Hellenism.) We know from the prophecies that Rome will take over. Note that these prophecies have a real time meaning of what is to come within Jewish History AND an Eschatology (end times) of events that will come in the last days. The little horn here of Antiochus is a king representing the foreshadow of satan! This little horn is connected in Scripture in Revelation and is satan, which sets the stage for the Messiah to come.
Finally, “the one like a son of man,” is the Prophecy of Jesus the Messiah coming to save all and to have an Everlasting Kingdom.
CHAPTER 8 – Daniel is standing in his vision. He can interact with the Vision to say “what in the world is all this??” CLEARLY God is too much for our finite minds. The interpretation of this vision is exact with the statue and animals, but this time with more detail to layer on top. The absolute best argument that the Bible could ONLY be written by God, through man’s hand is the exact revelation of prophecies fulfilled to the smallest of detail.
CHAPTER 9 — Daniel’s prayer. I have printed several copies of his prayer so when I am unsure how to pray….I can read Daniel’s prayer….so powerful!! What makes this prayer more “answerable” than other prayers? Consider these points: (these points are repeated from my mentor’s submission from last year and came from a John MacArthur commentary in case you want to listen to more.)
- Daniel KNEW God’s Word. He spoke of Jeremiah’s timeline of 70 years of captivity. Daniel was able to pray IN THE WORD because HE KNEW THE WORD. Daniel knew the direction his nation was headed from reading the scriptures. Do you?
- Daniel prayed that prayer ACCORDING to God’s Will. Do you?
- Daniel Prayed with the UTMOST respect and reverence for the Lord and with COMPLETE recognition of his own unworthiness of even being in the presence of the Lord. Do you?
- Daniel prayed in a “we are sinners” heart but focused on the needs of the others in prayer.
- Daniel prayed that the ULTIMATE purpose of an answered prayer was for ONLY God’s Glorification. DO you?
This prayer is so powerful for me…to keep me on the right track and make sure I am praying in a way that is pleasing to God. I am also VERY touched by the fact that Gabriel came to Daniel to let him know his prayer was heard from day ONE but there was intense spiritual warfare happening in the heavenlies causing delay in the answer. This reminds me of how important it is for each of us to put on the armor of God described in Ephesians 6:11-18 ….daily put it on!! Also remember that the glory of the Lord is our rear guard!! (Isaiah 52:12).
The 70 7′s — I know all the Bible is God inspired but this chapter is special. Isaac Newton said “we could stake the truth of Christianity on that prophecy alone, made 5 centuries before Christ; referring to the 70 7′s!! When I first read about Sir Isaac Newton, I was so touched that he believed in our God…so many scientists don’t believe in God today.
A 7 equals a year (a complete number) so 70 times 7 is 490 years. The Lord put a timeline for the Israelites to Finish Transgressions, to put an end to sin, to atone for wickedness, to bring everlasting righteousness, and to fulfill the prophecy. Are you ready for this SHOCKER….. 69 years have ALREADY OCCURRED!!! The stopwatch on the 69 STOPPED when Jesus gave his life on the Cross. We are NOW waiting on the last one. When will the stop watch start again?? There is ONE last part to this, and the last one is a 7 of 7. So what does that mean…it is talking about the 7 years of Tribulation! When will the 7 year Tribulation start?? Look again at verse 27—
“He will confirm a covenant with many for one ‘seven.’ In the middle of the ‘seven’ he will put an end to sacrifice and offering.” (He is referring to the antichrist in case you were wondering who the he was.)
In other words….he will sign a peace treaty with the Israelites and that will BEGIN the last 7!!!
Do you watch the news (doesn’t matter which station?) Have you heard about all that is happening just this week with Israel, Iran, the US, and the nations of the UN? PLEASE don’t misunderstand I certainly can’t tell you when the 2nd coming will occur…..nor can anyone else. The authors of the NT thought they were living in the last days so none of us really know WHEN…we just know HE WILL. Jesus said in Matthew 24:36-44
“No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father…Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come…So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect Him.”
So we cannot know when HE will return….BUT we are to “keep watch…..be ready.” And the best way I know to do that is to READ, STUDY, MEMORIZE, the WORD and keep a close relationship with the Lord. Be involved in a solid bible based church, in small groups or bible studies to be surrounded by other believers. He has promised to provide us all we need, and sooooooo much more.
Sharing HIS love,
We left off in Chapter 3 with Shadrack, Meshack, and “Away-we-go” being released from the fire when King Nebbie saw the 4th man in the fire. King Nebbie ACKNOWLEDGED that the God of Daniel and his three friends WAS the Most High God. He ruled that no one could say ANY thing against the God of Daniel, Shad, Mesh, and “Away-we-go.” (If you are just joining the blog.. I am not making fun of Abednego’s name …that is actually how I learned his name so I could then remember all three of them.) 🙂 I’m also not making fun of King Nebuchadneccar’s name….Nebbie is simply shorter to type 🙂 .
Chapter 4 – Did you notice Daniel’s beautiful character? Although he could interpret the dream of King Nebbie he begins by telling the king (verse 19): “My lord, if only the dream applied to your enemies and its meaning to your adversaries…but the tree is you….” What forgiveness Daniel showed. And his compassion was most touching!! Everything that Daniel prophesied about King Nebbie CAME TO PASS. But the most interesting part of this to me today was that God through Daniel told Nebbie in verse 27: “Therefore, O king, be pleased to accept my advice: RENOUNCE your sins by doing what is right and your wickedness by being kind to the oppressed. It may be THEN that your prosperity will continue.” Words that struck me in verses 25-27 were:
“UNTIL you acknowledge the Most High is sovereign…”; “your kingdom will be RESTORED…WHEN you…” and “RENOUNCE your sins…”
Unfortunately, Nebbie did not accept the Most High God as Sovereign although he had 12 months to change. So….twelve months later, as the king was walking on the roof of the royal palace of Babylon, he said, “Is not this the great Babylon I have built as the royal residence, by my mighty power and for the glory of my majesty?” RUT ROW…. It was all about Nebbie and there was NOTHING about the MOST HIGH GOD in his view of life!!
Result of Nebbie’s pride and his punishment: OUCH!!!
At the end of Nebbie’s time of insanity verse 34 says:… “ I raised my eyes toward heaven and my sanity was restored. Then I praised the Most High; I honored and glorified HIM who lives forever.” Verses 34-35 are full of PRAISE to the Most High God by King Nebbie!!! WE end chapter 4 with Nebuchadnezzar giving praise, exalting, and glorifying the KING of heaven!!! King Nebbie was RESTORED, but much like us ….. we often have to come to the end of our ropes before we realize we have not given every part of our being to our Most High God. Nebuchadnezzar saw the three men survive the furnace and he saw the fourth man in there with them. He acknowledged God as great, wouldn’t let anyone in the entire kingdom say anything bad about God. However, at that point the Most High God was simply another god he could add to his list of gods because he saw HIS power!!! We saw how Nebbie credited himself with all his success rather than God. God even warned Nebbie through Daniel that he needed to acknowledge the Most High God as THE SOVERIGN GOD so the prophecy would not have to pass. Nebuchadnezzar FINALLY recognized God as the MOST HIGH SOVERIGN GOD. I LOVED this and was reminded by Nebbie that he and I have more in common than I’d like to admit. Don’t misunderstand; Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior. However, there are days when I am confronted in what I call less obvious areas —“what is more important?” With the loss of my husband’s job, praying for guidance, praying for a new career for him…and all that goes with that…. I catch myself confessing my sadness at the thought of having to sell our home. And God whispers….”my child whom I love dearly…..it is just a house….I have things you can’t even imagine in store for you….just lean on me.”
As King Nebbie made his proclamation of the Most High Sovereign God, I could not help but think of Job. Do you remember when we read Job? Well if not, this is what Job did and said after the enemy’s first “round” of taking ALL he had just in Chapter 1 of Job verses 20-22:
“At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.” In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.”
WHOA…talk about giving thanks and an attitude of gratitude when all earthly possessions have been taken away!!!
Chapter 5 – As we read this chapter, it is important to be aware of the fact that approximately 66 years have passed from the beginning of Chapter 1 to the beginning of Chapter 5. Daniel was taken into captivity when he was around 16 so now he is about 82 and King Nebbie is deceased. This is why we hear of the names of the new kings.
Sometimes I am amazed at what is actually in Scripture like this drunken orgy taking place in this book of Daniel (I KNOW….jaw dropper!!) And NOT ONLY were they having a drunken orgy …but these people WERE USING THE GOBLETS AND TEMPLE ITEMS AT THIS PARTY!!! OH MY HEAVENS!!! It makes me painfully aware of how much people without God do not change. And then we read the phrase: “the writing is on the wall”….. bet you didn’t know you were quoting Scripture when you said this did you???
Can you IMAGINE the look on the faces of these people when they saw FINGERS from a HUMAN HAND come from NOWHERE and ATTACHED to NOTHING but writing words on the wall???? I don’t quite imagine that these people had clothing on when all this began to happen (as the picture shows) and the wall was most likely the LAST thing they were looking at….but GOD certainly got their attention didn’t HE?? BUT The King saw it….turned pale….sought advice. As my pastor just said this past weekend….there are a LOT of big BUTS in the Bible and they often mean something BIG for us. 🙂
Mene, Mene, Tekel, Parsin!
No one could understand the writing on the wall. The King sent for Daniel (after he had tried all HIS wise men, wizards, astrologers, etc) and lo and behold….Daniel could give him the meaning and it wasn’t good…..ALL because he went back to serving ALL the godssssss rather than the ONE TRUE GOD as his father King Nebbie had. Interestingly, in the research I have done it appears that Belshazzar was from the lineage of King Nebbie. The Belshazzar in this chapter according to different commentaries, the meaning of the original Hebrew word used for father, and archeological artifacts was also the son of a Belshazzar (all in Nebuchadnezzar’s line of descendants.) The father apparently was out in battle and left his son in the castle to manage things there. The reason I bring this up is because when Belshazzar tells Daniel if he can solve the writing then he will become the third highest in the kingdom it is because both Belshazzars were co-regents (father- first, son- second, and Daniel third.)
Chapter 6 – Belshazzar died and now we see Darius a Mede, at the age of 62 take over the Kingdom. (Pay attention to the Statue Dream)
Daniel at this point is in his mid to late 80s and has served two Kings if Babylon (Nebuchadnezzar and Belshazzar). NOW the Head of the statue fell to the Chest and Medo-Persia is the Empire. Darius, a good leader, did not think his decree would hurt Daniel. His decree was a trick. The administrators were jealous and set the whole thing up…..and NOW we read the famous story of Daniel in the Lion’s Den!! I always thought Daniel was still a fairly young man when he was placed in the lion’s den…..but he had some age on him!!! KNOW that these lions were STARVED and abused so they would viciously attack, mutulate, destroy, and eat whatever was thrown in that room with them. BUT…..you read how the story ended!!! TALK about God’s intervention!!! WOW 🙂
“For he is the living God
and he endures forever;
his kingdom will not be destroyed,
his dominion will never end.
He rescues and he saves;
he performs signs and wonders
in the heavens and on the earth.
He has rescued Daniel
from the power of the lions.”
So Daniel prospered during the reign of Darius and the reign of Cyrus the Persian.
Do you recall reading the name of Cyrus before? We read about him WAY back in Isaiah……300 YEARS before Daniel!!!! PROPHECY FULFILLED!!!!
Who says of Cyrus, ‘He is my shepherd
and will accomplish all that I please;
he will say of Jerusalem, “Let it be rebuilt,”
and of the temple, “Let its foundations be laid.” ‘
”This is what the LORD says to his anointed,
to Cyrus, whose right hand I take hold of
to subdue nations before him
and to strip kings of their armor,
to open doors before him
so that gates will not be shut:
I will go before you
and will level the mountains ;
I will break down gates of bronze
and cut through bars of iron.
I will give you the treasures of darkness,
riches stored in secret places,
so that you may know that I am the LORD,
the God of Israel, who summons you by name.
KNOW that OUR God is a BIG God… BIGGER than all we can imagine or dream of!! He has, and continues to go to great lengths to reveal HIMSELF to us…. Just look at the “players” in this Scripture!!! And look at what HE did for us when HE sent Jesus to pay the ransom for ALL our sins!!!
God’s timing is always perfect. My timing and the timing of events in my life have made me question if I should continue writing the blog since things have prevented me from writing daily. However, many of you have sent me wonderful notes of encouragement and GOD…the GOD of all CREATION loves me so much that in the midst of all my weaknesses….here we are reading the book of Daniel right at Thanksgiving!! I am personally, deeply touched at all that Daniel and the Book of Daniel reminds me to be thankful for/of. This is such a wonderful Book to be reading right here at Thanksgiving.
I thank God for the Book of Daniel and for each of you reading the blog but most importantly for HIS Word.. you who are reading the WORD of God and sharing with me……. THANK YOU!!!!!
BTW… PLEASE forgive the HUGE font size in this post. I have done everything I know to do to make it smaller and it will not go smaller. I’ve shut down my entry three times and started over, made sure my original has no special fonts and it does not….but I am doing something to make it act crazy… so I apologize. I simply thank God that I was able to make the post. God bless each of you!!
Sharing HIS love,