"Thou hast given a banner to them that fear Thee, that it may be displayed because of the truth" (Ps. 60:4).

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The Prophecy of Daniel

Lesson Number 10

By Given O. Blakely

Part 6

A MAGNIFICENT MESSAGE SEEN

The magnificence of the message Daniel delivered was, in measure, grasped by Nebuchadnezzar. Immediately, he associated it with Deity, and humbled himself before the messenger. In this way he acknowledged his own mortality and inferiority.           

Our age has lost this perception. Academics have actually neutered the Word of God in general, and the Gospel of Christ in particular. People can hear the report of the magnificent workings of God without any apparent impact upon their spirit. They can hear of the exceeding great and precious promises of God, and remain unmoved by their grandeur. I greatly fear that the Christianity many have embraced has actually inoculated them against spiritual sensitivity. In such a condition, they have stooped beneath the predisposition of Nebuchadnezzar the king, who was a heathen, without the knowledge of God. This is a most serious state, indicating we are in a great falling away!           

One can sense the near-total absence of the awareness of Christ’s superiority, and the excelling glory of the Gospel. With no apparent twinge of conscience, professed Christian teachers can make families, country, church growth, and the likes, their emphasis. Portions of Scripture that declare and expound the Gospel are abandoned in favor of Proverbs and Ecclesiastics, or texts that deal with the interrelationships of men. It is not that these things are wrong, and none should conclude that they are. However, they are to be considered within the greater light of the Gospel of Christ, and not in isolation from it. Let me state this another way.             

Those who are not expert in the Gospel, cannot, by virtue of that lack, be expert in anything else. They have no light to see.

THE RESPECT OF DANIEL

“ 46b . . . and commanded that they should offer an oblation and sweet odors unto him.” Other versions read, “ordered that an offering and incense be presented to him,” NIB “gave orders to present to him an offering and fragrant incense,” NAS “commanded that they should offer in sacrifice to him victims and incense,” DOUAY and “he commanded his people to offer sacrifices and burn sweet incense before him.” NLT           

Some commentators have a great deal of difficulty with this text – particularly because it contains no further explanations. It obviously does not conform to the greater understanding that we have in Christ Jesus.

Here again, we confront an action that is strictly forbidden under the Gospel of Christ. On one occasion, when Paul and Barnabas were preaching in Lystra, Paul saw a man “cripple from his mother’s womb, who never had walked.” It is written that Paul perceived this man “had faith to be healed.” The man had fastened his attention upon Paul, and was listening intently to him. Suddenly Paul shouted out in a loud voice, “Stand upright on thy feet!” Immediately, the man “leaped and walked.” When the people saw “what Paul had done” they concluded, “The gods are come down to us in the likeness of men.” They then referred to Barnabas as Jupiter (Zeus), and Paul as Mercurius (Hermes), because he was the chief speaker. The local priest of Jupiter, or Zeus, “brought oxen and garlands unto the gates, and would have done sacrifice with the people.” As soon as “the apostles, Barnabas and Paul, heard of, they rent their clothes, and ran in among the people, crying out and saying, Sirs, why do ye these things? We also are men of like passions with you, and preach unto you that ye should turn from these vanities unto the living God, which made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are therein” (Acts 14:7-15).           

Why was the response of Paul and Barnabas apparently different than that of Daniel – if, indeed, it was? I suggest it was owing to the lesser spiritual light in Daniel’s day. That does not make what occurred there right – it does make it tolerable for the time, allowing God to “wink at,” or overlook it.

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"Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning;  and ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately" (Lk. 12:35-36).

 

 

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InJesus