Summary: Daniel gives a certain messages for our uncertain world. The Vision Nebuchadnezzar had was of the future and the downfall of all earthly kingdoms. For those that are part of the kingdom of God this is good news!
Intro: What comes to mind when I read Daniel 2:24 – 49 is certainty. Nebuchadnezzar was very uncertain about what the dream was and what it meant. However Daniel was sure that it was revealing certainty. Daniel 2:45 “The great God has told the king what will happen in the future. The dream is true, and its interpretation certain.”
The Hebrew word translated certain means absolutely, fixed, sure, concrete. If we are anything at all we are human. We tend to allow our minds to wander toward the future just like Nebuchadnezzar did. We think of driving, marriage, vacation, retirement, what we will leave to our grandchildren. In Daniel chapter 2 the one thing we can bank on and know that will happen is the coming of the kingdom of God.
I. The kingdoms of this earth will be eternally ruined (the kingdoms are represented by a statue)
A) The strange description of the statue (2:31-35 read)
1) A single statue
There is a continuity or link between the different materials. The materials are of differing value and strength. There is a very clear decline in the value of the metal as the strength increases. Daniel will explain in a moment that these are kingdoms. The kingdoms are tied together and built on top of each other and will ultimately share the same fate. Failed kingdom after failed kingdom is built on top of each other hoping that somehow they can finally get it right and endure!!
2) A static statute
The statue was static. It could not move and would not move. It is clearly making no progress! So many leaders, political, scientific, economic, etc want to tell us that we are moving forward, making progress. When all the kingdoms of the earth ever do is build on the failures and foolishness of the kingdoms before.
3) A shaky statue
All the wonder, beauty, value and strength of these metals were resting on unstable feet made of clay. Everything about it is uncertain and unstable. Have you ever wondered why your life was so unstable and uncertain? If you build your life on man’s principles there is no security or certainty. Illustration: Fire in NJ. “These people are facing uncertainties they never expected.”
“Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing.”
Missionary handed a wire his family had drowned
Eric Barker was a missionary from Great Britain who had spent over fifty years in Portugal preaching the gospel, often under adverse conditions. During World War II, the situation became so critical that he took the advice to send his wife and eight children to England for safety. His sister and her three children were also evacuated on the same ship. Barker remained behind to conclude some mission matters. The Sunday after Barker’s loved ones had left, he stood before the congregation and said, “I’ve just received word that all my family have arrived safely Home.” He then proceeded with the service as usual. Later, the full meaning of his words became known to the people. He had been handed a wire just before the meeting, informing him that a submarine had torpedoed the ship, and everyone on board had drowned. Barker knew that all on board were believers, and the knowledge that his family was enjoying the bliss of heaven enabled him to live above his circumstances in spite of his overwhelming grief. (Encyclopedia of Illustrations #5149).
B) The specific details of the statue
1) The kingdoms description
a) The head of Gold is Nebuchadnezzar (Babylon) 605 - 539BC
b) The chest and arms of silver is Medio – Persia 539 – 331 BC
c) The thighs of bronze is Greece 331-168 BC
d) The legs of iron is Rome 168BC – 476 AD
e) The feet of iron and clay (divided nations) 476 -- present
Understand that Daniel only interprets and identifies the kingdom represented by the head of gold. The point in this passage is not specific kingdoms (however I believe that Daniel has given us a picture of History.) The point of the passage is the coming of the kingdom of God that overwhelms and eventually destroys the kingdoms of man.
2) The kingdoms destruction – Daniel 2:45, 2.35
What is it that destroys the kingdoms? A rock cut out of a mountain not made human hands. This is the messiah Jesus Christ. Listen to the following scriptures.
The kingdoms of the earth are crushed and blown away by the wind. The things that so many people are living their lives for will be totally destroyed!