Saturday, 8 March 2014

Daniel 1-5

Here's how the study works: Read the chapters mentioned in the heading during the week and share any words, thoughts, verses that stood out to you. Having a week for several chapters creates the opportunity to revisit them and make additional comments as you feel inclined as well as make comments on other people's insights.


Susan said...

1:21 And Daniel remained there until the first year of King Cyrus.

Daniel, like Joseph, was taken from his homeland as a teenager and there is no record of him ever returning. He was one of the first wave to go into exile and was probably too old to return. Daniel served God in a foreign land all his life. He lived a sacrificial life and was faithful despite his circumstances.

A wonderful example for us.

Susan said...

2:47 The king said to Daniel, "Surely your God is the God of gods and the Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries, for you were able to reveal this mystery."

Nebuchadnezzar recognised that God has wisdom as a revealer of mysteries but is yet to acknowledge God's power and Sovereignty. It was the first step in a long learning process for Nebuchadnezzar.

Susan said...

3:12 But there are some Jews whom you have set over the affairs of the province of Babylon—Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego—who pay no attention to you, Your Majesty. They neither serve your gods nor worship the image of gold you have set up.

Daniel had arranged for Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego to be in these positions (2:49) and probably they were strategic in light of the other exiles who would soon be arriving. Satan probably wanted them out to the way but God's plans prevails and Nebuchadnezzar gets his second lesson and realises God not only is the source of wisdom but also of power (v.28-29)

Susan said...

4:17 The decision is announced by messengers, the holy ones declare the verdict, so that the living may know that the Most High is sovereign over all kingdoms on earth and gives them to anyone he wishes and sets over them the lowliest of people.

This is the third lesson Nebuchadnezzar that God teaches him. That God is Sovereign and Nebuchadnezzar is only king because God had given him a kingdom to rule. He did not claim it by his own efforts as he thought.

Susan said...

5:29-30 Then at Belshazzar’s command, Daniel was clothed in purple, a gold chain was placed around his neck, and he was proclaimed the third highest ruler in the kingdom. That very night Belshazzar, king of the Babylonians, was slain.

Daniel's rewards were short lived. He was proclaimed third in the kingdom and hours later the king died calling in to question his appointment. Who knows if he got to keep the purple clothes or the gold chain? Worldly gain is often short lived.