Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Daniel, chapter 2

It is not fun to be the bearer of bad news. If you are the subordinate to the person you must tell this news to, it can potentially be bad for you. In these days, a person might just lose their job in such a circumstance. Back in biblical times, however, a person was often executed for telling bad news. That is the situation we see here in Daniel 2. In this chapter, the king of Babylon has a dream he wants people to interpret truthfully. Those that could do so, however, were afraid to because they didn’t want to face the king’s wrath. They felt that by doing nothing they would be safe. Instead, the king ordered their death because no one would step forward.

Once Daniel found this out he stepped forward though. He knew that God gave him not only the power to interpret the dream, but God also had the power to protect him. This is an act of great faith on Daniel’s part. In human terms, his situation was hopeless, yet God could deliver him. God offered His protection to Daniel if he only stepped forward and did His work.

14 When Arioch, the commander of the king's guard, had gone out to put to death the wise men of Babylon, Daniel spoke to him with wisdom and tact. 15 He asked the king's officer, "Why did the king issue such a harsh decree?" Arioch then explained the matter to Daniel. 16 At this, Daniel went in to the king and asked for time, so that he might interpret the dream for him.

17 Then Daniel returned to his house and explained the matter to his friends Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. 18 He urged them to plead for mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery, so that he and his friends might not be executed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. 19 During the night the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision. Then Daniel praised the God of heaven – Daniel 2:14-19

When Daniel first went to the king he did not know what the dream meant. As we see here, it was revealed to him after he had asked for time with the king. By merely stepping forward when no one else would, God revealed the meaning of the dream to Daniel. He was rewarded for his faith and because he later still had faith to tell the king, he was rewarded again with a position of power.

I don’t know where you are in your life. It may be a position where you think everything around you is hopeless. I know I feel that way this morning. There seems to be no way out of the life I have found myself in. Still, I am striving to keep my faith. I probably won’t be asked to interpret a dream, but it is my prayer each that I will have the strength to step forward, like Daniel, when my time is called to do whatever it is I am called to do. In the meantime it can be frustrating. I feel useless and like I am a spectator of life, but I must remain faithful.

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