Daniel part 3

Signs that it is time to transform

I make a decree that in every dominion of my kingdom men must tremble and fear before the God of Daniel. For He is the living God, And steadfast forever; His kingdom is the one which shall not be destroyed, And His dominion shall endure to the end. He delivers and rescues, And He works signs and wonders In heaven and on earth, Who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.” Daniel 6:26-27 NKJV

Daniel was in Babylon through the reign of many kings and even when the next kingdom came in and took over!  In this verse King Darius has an experience with God! Much Like King Nebby back at the beginning of our study of this book.  And when you truly see and experience the power of God it causes confession of Him as Lord! But it still does not cause a transformation, the application of grace, the softening of the heart or repentance.  It is beautiful – but people with an experience often forget it quickly.

Dear Heavenly Father – As always, please open eye to see and our ears to hear what you are saying! Lord – open our understanding that we may know you and give us wisdom. Please do not let us miss out on what you want and need from us today. Lord, I pray that your word prepares us and not scares us! We forbid the works and influences of fear over your word. And please keep us and bless us and shine your face upon us and pour out grace over us and give us peace! Thank you! – In Jesus name we pray, Amen

Today’s reading is from the book of Daniel, chapters 5-6 (embedded below the image below for your convenience).  AND today is the High Holy Day, the Fast, the Day of Atonement, Yom Kippur – and I was hoping we would coordinate it with the Daniel fast in our reading.  But nooOOoooo we get stuck with a passage about a feast! Anyone else hungry?!

I am sure there is a lesson in here about the misuse of the Lord’s property – we can refer back to Levitical law and see how in Ezra God returned these items to His temple.  The consequences of misuse is God removes the items back to His temple.
I am sure there is a lesson here about the PRIDE, which compelled the aforementioned sin. And how the consequences of pride are a fall.  And poor Daniel (who asked for no reward) became the 3rd in charge on the eve of an outside nation coming in and overthrowing – taking over – really not a promotion you want. 

But I sit here, thinking about the atonement, and to cleanse myself so I am sealed in as clean and marked by the blood of the lamb – and why we are sealed in a book and why are we protected? What comes next? And it is the judgment of course. For those of us who took the time, understood the season, repented and humbled even if there was not much to repent of – but we took it serious. We are sealed in and out justice, and judgment shall be to have it count as righteousness and Holiness through grace. And those who did not, shall be judged according to their works. But we all know works cannot save us – this must be where Jesus rooted the verse of casting out those He never knew (Matthew 7:21-23) and they said: but Lord, I did all these things in your name. Faith without works in dead, yes – but that word “works” really means “the action of the fruits of the spirit”. We are fallible humans – our works are useless in and of itself (Psalm 127). We desperately need to be marked by grace.

Here in this banquet – we see a young ruler (King Nebby’s grandson) who is just completely clueless to the signs of the time. He was second in command, His father (the king and King Nebby’s son) was out on the battle field – a battle raged and he celebrated?! Coming from a good family or having power and authority do not matter when you cannot discern the signs of the time. When you can’t see the writing on the wall 😉  (yes, this is where you get that saying from.) The young king did not even get the chance to change his ways – His immediate response was not repentance and therefore he was a victim of one of God’s “suddenly” moments (like Psalms 64:7). I suppose it is important to note – that when you see the writing on the wall – it is already too late. So let me warn you now to repent, and do so daily.

God had already proven with this family (oh the Grace of God with these corrupt worldly leaders!) that experiences with Him were not going to change them.
Saul had an experience with God on the road to Damascus (Acts 9) – He was bind and his name changed.  He had transformation on the road to Damascus, not just an experience. 
Jonah had an experience with God in the belly of a whale (book of Jonah) – He came out of that experience covered in whale vomit and a fear of God to obey.  After he preached, he wandered off to sit under a tree and sulk. His heart did not change. He was not transformed.  He was listed in Second Kings among the well-known and liked prophets, but most people do not know he is in the Bible twice His ministry was not like Ezekiel (saw a vision and was transformed), Isaiah (saw a vision and was transformed), Paul (f/k/a Saul, who also saw a vision and was transformed), and so on.

King Darius comes in – we have a new ruler, so God gives him an experience.  Although beautifully, the King declares God is God.  But do we have a transformation – or is their declaration without internal transformation.

I used to pray for people to experience God – but honestly experiences are so easily dismissed.  I now pray for a glorious transformation.  I used to pray that you all would read this and experience God through His grace… I was so close. I now pray that you read this and are transformed through grace to experience God.

The whole point of Daniel, of these passages and of this Blog – God is real and alive. This loving and righteous God wants a relationship with you. If you can understand the deeper things in this blog, that is fantastic, press in further – but let me make it simple for those who are trying to learn and figure it out: there is a whole lot happening in the shadow around us and we won’t make it through without a relationship with God. Just submit to a loving relationship with Him and He will take care of the rest.

I am not trying to scare you into a relationship – it is the truth. You will not survive the spirit of lies, fear, lust, greed, and pride and you will end up in an eternal lake of fire. That is the truth and now you are prepared and can make an educated decision with faith.

RELATIONSHIP:
Do you already have a relationship with a powerful God who cares about your every need because He loves you? Did you know my God can communicate with you and protect you – He has a plan for you to prosper if you just submit to His will and let His plan play out in your life!!! God wants a relationship with you and has already made a plan for your life. He loves you so much He sent His son to this world, to die as a sacrifice for your sins and rise from death with victory over sin and the ability to have a personal relationship with you.
“If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.” Romans 10:9-10 NIV
Here is a prayer for you to pray:
Jesus, I believe you are the way, the truth, the life, and the only way to the Father. I believe you are the son of God, you came to Earth and lived. That you died on the cross as a sacrifice for my sins, and rose again so that I may be saved from my sins and be able to get to know you. I declare: Jesus, you are Lord!
Therefore, I confess that I am a sinner and I ask that you forgive me of my sins and come into my life. Help me to turn away from my sins and transform me into what you have lovingly created me to be. Help me through a real personal relationship grow and accept your will for my life – that I may live in your blessings. Please walk with me, and talk with me – I accept a relationship with you and with our Father God, through you. In the name of Jesus I pray ~ Amen

MEMORY WORK: This month we have another great verse to pick up and swing when you need a sword in your hand!

1 John 4:4

NKJV – “You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.”
NAS – “You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.”
ESV – “Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.”
AMP – “Little children (believers, dear ones), you are of God and you belong to Him and have [already] overcome them [the agents of the antichrist]; because He who is in you is greater than he (Satan) who is in the world [of sinful mankind].”
NIV – “You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.”

Thank you for reading.
May the God of peace keep you and bless you. May you stay focused on Christ and covered in grace.
Maranatha ~ Come Lord Jesus!

BIBLE READING: Daniel 5-6 NKJV

Belshazzar’s Feast

Belshazzar the king made a great feast for a thousand of his lords, and drank wine in the presence of the thousand. While he tasted the wine, Belshazzar gave the command to bring the gold and silver vessels which his [a]father Nebuchadnezzar had taken from the temple which had been in Jerusalem, that the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines might drink from them. Then they brought the gold vessels that had been taken from the temple of the house of God which had been in Jerusalem; and the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines drank from them. They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold and silver, bronze and iron, wood and stone.

In the same hour the fingers of a man’s hand appeared and wrote opposite the lampstand on the plaster of the wall of the king’s palace; and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote. Then the king’s countenance changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints of his hips were loosened and his knees knocked against each other. The king cried [b]aloud to bring in the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers. The king spoke, saying to the wise men of Babylon, “Whoever reads this writing, and tells me its interpretation, shall be clothed with purple and have a chain of gold around his neck; and he shall be the third ruler in the kingdom.” Now all the king’s wise men came, but they could not read the writing, or make known to the king its interpretation. Then King Belshazzar was greatly troubled, his countenance was changed, and his lords were [c]astonished.

10 The queen, because of the words of the king and his lords, came to the banquet hall. The queen spoke, saying, “O king, live forever! Do not let your thoughts trouble you, nor let your countenance change. 11 There is a man in your kingdom in whom is the Spirit of the Holy God. And in the days of your [d]father, light and understanding and wisdom, like the wisdom of the gods, were found in him; and King Nebuchadnezzar your [e]father—your father the king—made him chief of the magicians, astrologers, Chaldeans, and soothsayers. 12 Inasmuch as an excellent spirit, knowledge, understanding, interpreting dreams, solving riddles, and [f]explaining enigmas were found in this Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar, now let Daniel be called, and he will give the interpretation.”

The Writing on the Wall Explained

13 Then Daniel was brought in before the king. The king spoke, and said to Daniel, “Are you that Daniel [g]who is one of the captives from Judah, whom my [h]father the king brought from Judah? 14 I have heard of you, that the [i]Spirit of God is in you, and that light and understanding and excellent wisdom are found in you. 15 Now the wise men, the astrologers, have been brought in before me, that they should read this writing and make known to me its interpretation, but they could not give the interpretation of the thing. 16 And I have heard of you, that you can give interpretations and [j]explain enigmas. Now if you can read the writing and make known to me its interpretation, you shall be clothed with purple and have a chain of gold around your neck, and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom.”

17 Then Daniel answered, and said before the king, “Let your gifts be for yourself, and give your rewards to another; yet I will read the writing to the king, and make known to him the interpretation. 18 O king, the Most High God gave Nebuchadnezzar your [k]father a kingdom and majesty, glory and honor. 19 And because of the majesty that He gave him, all peoples, nations, and languages trembled and feared before him. Whomever he wished, he executed; whomever he wished, he kept alive; whomever he wished, he set up; and whomever he wished, he put down. 20 But when his heart was lifted up, and his spirit was hardened in pride, he was deposed from his kingly throne, and they took his glory from him. 21 Then he was driven from the sons of men, his heart was made like the beasts, and his dwelling was with the wild donkeys. They fed him with grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven, till he [l]knew that the Most High God rules in the kingdom of men, and appoints over it whomever He chooses.

22 “But you his son, Belshazzar, have not humbled your heart, although you knew all this. 23 And you have [m]lifted yourself up against the Lord of heaven. They have brought the vessels of [n]His house before you, and you and your lords, your wives and your concubines, have drunk wine from them. And you have praised the gods of silver and gold, bronze and iron, wood and stone, which do not see or hear or know; and the God who holds your breath in His hand and owns all your ways, you have not glorified. 24 Then the [o]fingers of the hand were sent from Him, and this writing was written.

25 “And this is the inscription that was written:

[p]MENE, MENE, [q]TEKEL, [r]UPHARSIN.

26 This is the interpretation of each word. MENE: God has numbered your kingdom, and finished it; 27 TEKEL: You have been weighed in the balances, and found wanting; 28 PERES: Your kingdom has been divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.”[s] 29 Then Belshazzar gave the command, and they clothed Daniel with purple and put a chain of gold around his neck, and made a proclamation concerning him that he should be the third ruler in the kingdom.

Belshazzar’s Fall

30 That very night Belshazzar, king of the Chaldeans, was slain. 31 And Darius the Mede received the kingdom, being about sixty-two years old.

The Plot Against Daniel

It pleased Darius to set over the kingdom one hundred and twenty satraps, to be over the whole kingdom; and over these, three governors, of whom Daniel was one, that the satraps might give account to them, so that the king would suffer no loss. Then this Daniel distinguished himself above the governors and satraps, because an excellent spirit was in him; and the king gave thought to setting him over the whole realm. So the governors and satraps sought to find some charge against Daniel concerning the kingdom; but they could find no charge or fault, because he was faithful; nor was there any error or fault found in him. Then these men said, “We shall not find any charge against this Daniel unless we find it against him concerning the law of his God.”

So these governors and satraps thronged before the king, and said thus to him: “King Darius, live forever! All the governors of the kingdom, the administrators and satraps, the counselors and advisors, have consulted together to establish a royal statute and to make a firm decree, that whoever petitions any god or man for thirty days, except you, O king, shall be cast into the den of lions. Now, O king, establish the decree and sign the writing, so that it cannot be changed, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which [t]does not alter.” Therefore King Darius signed the written decree.

Daniel in the Lions’ Den

10 Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days.

11 Then these men assembled and found Daniel praying and making supplication before his God. 12 And they went before the king, and spoke concerning the king’s decree: “Have you not signed a decree that every man who petitions any god or man within thirty days, except you, O king, shall be cast into the den of lions?”

The king answered and said, “The thing is true, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which [u]does not alter.”

13 So they answered and said before the king, “That Daniel, who is [v]one of the captives from Judah, does not show due regard for you, O king, or for the decree that you have signed, but makes his petition three times a day.”

14 And the king, when he heard these words, was greatly displeased with himself, and set his heart on Daniel to deliver him; and he [w]labored till the going down of the sun to deliver him. 15 Then these men [x]approached the king, and said to the king, “Know, O king, that it is the law of the Medes and Persians that no decree or statute which the king establishes may be changed.”

16 So the king gave the command, and they brought Daniel and cast him into the den of lions. But the king spoke, saying to Daniel, “Your God, whom you serve continually, He will deliver you.” 17 Then a stone was brought and laid on the mouth of the den, and the king sealed it with his own signet ring and with the signets of his lords, that the purpose concerning Daniel might not be changed.

Daniel Saved from the Lions

18 Now the king went to his palace and spent the night fasting; and no [y]musicians were brought before him. Also his sleep [z]went from him. 19 Then the king arose very early in the morning and went in haste to the den of lions. 20 And when he came to the den, he cried out with a [aa]lamenting voice to Daniel. The king spoke, saying to Daniel, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to deliver you from the lions?”

21 Then Daniel said to the king, “O king, live forever! 22 My God sent His angel and shut the lions’ mouths, so that they have not hurt me, because I was found innocent before Him; and also, O king, I have done no wrong before you.”

23 Now the king was exceedingly glad for him, and commanded that they should take Daniel up out of the den. So Daniel was taken up out of the den, and no injury whatever was found on him, because he believed in his God.

Darius Honors God

24 And the king gave the command, and they brought those men who had accused Daniel, and they cast them into the den of lions—them, their children, and their wives; and the lions overpowered them, and broke all their bones in pieces before they ever came to the bottom of the den.

25 Then King Darius wrote:

To all peoples, nations, and languages that dwell in all the earth:

Peace be multiplied to you.

26 I make a decree that in every dominion of my kingdom men must tremble and fear before the God of Daniel.

For He is the living God,
And steadfast forever;
His kingdom is the one which shall not be destroyed,
And His dominion shall endure to the end.
27 He delivers and rescues,
And He works signs and wonders
In heaven and on earth,
Who has delivered Daniel from the [ab]power of the lions.

28 So this Daniel prospered in the reign of Darius and in the reign of Cyrus the Persian.

Footnotes

  1. Daniel 5:2 Or ancestor
  2. Daniel 5:7 Lit. with strength
  3. Daniel 5:9 perplexed
  4. Daniel 5:11 Or ancestor
  5. Daniel 5:11 Or ancestor
  6. Daniel 5:12 Lit. untying knots
  7. Daniel 5:13 Lit. who is of the sons of the captivity
  8. Daniel 5:13 Or ancestor
  9. Daniel 5:14 Or spirit of the gods
  10. Daniel 5:16 Lit. untie knots
  11. Daniel 5:18 Or ancestor
  12. Daniel 5:21 Recognized
  13. Daniel 5:23 Exalted
  14. Daniel 5:23 The temple
  15. Daniel 5:24 Lit. palm
  16. Daniel 5:25 Lit. a mina (50 shekels) from the verb “to number”
  17. Daniel 5:25 Lit. a shekel from the verb “to weigh”
  18. Daniel 5:25 Lit. and half-shekels from the verb “to divide”; pl. of Peres, v. 28
  19. Daniel 5:28 Aram. Paras, consonant with Peres
  20. Daniel 6:8 Lit. does not pass away
  21. Daniel 6:12 Lit. does not pass away
  22. Daniel 6:13 Lit. of the sons of the captivity
  23. Daniel 6:14 strove
  24. Daniel 6:15 Lit. thronged before
  25. Daniel 6:18 Exact meaning unknown
  26. Daniel 6:18 Or fled
  27. Daniel 6:20 Or grieved
  28. Daniel 6:27 Lit. hand

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