Summary: They say timing is everything. With God, it is also perfect, as demonstrated in Daniel’s vision.
God’s Perfect Timing
Griffith Baptist Church – 3/16/08
Text: Daniel 2:19-49
Cathy Mullikin’s bird is cooked, and her calendar is toast.
Mullikin had her Thanksgiving turkey dinner already cooked on Thursday, “and my friends and family are coming on the 28th and they’re going to think I’m a kook,” she said.
She should never have believed that free calendar. Jackson-Madison County General Hospital gave out 40,000 of them last year and every last one said Thanksgiving was on the 21st instead of the 28th.
Associated Press - Jackson, Tenn, Spokesman-Review, Sunday, November 24, 1996, p. A4
We are prisoners of time:
o 24 hours in a day to work, eat, sleep and get things done
o Every minute ticks by beyond our control
o We cannot stop aging
o We cannot stop progress
o There are days allotted for us and that is it (Eccles. 3:1)
o The control of time is not ours, only what we do with it.
The events in our life are controlled by a gracious and omnipotent God
Sometimes, we cannot see his working or timing but we trust it is there
Daniel was trusting God for His timing in the revelation of a dream that would save His life.
I don’t imagine that Daniel even broke a sweat waiting for God to disclose what he needed to know.
Transition Statement: Let’s take a look at the picture of God’s timing to understand this story and than we will see the purpose of God’s timing.
1. The Picture of God’s Timing
A. Daniel’s Prayer – 2:19-23
i. The Praise for answered prayer – 19
ii. The Attributes of God that speak to His control – 20-22
a. Perfect wisdom - 20
b. Awesome power - 20
c. He determines the events of history - 21a
d. Governments rise and fall at His whim and for His purpose - 21b
e. True wisdom and knowledge come from God at His choosing - 21c
f. The depth of mysteries is His to reveal - 22
g. There is nothing beyond His range of knowledge, understanding and control - 22
iii. The Acknowledgment of God’s Provision - 23
a. It is direct - 23a
b. It is humble - 23b
c. It is immediate - 23c
B. Daniel’s Plea – 2:24-30
i. Daniel tells Arioch he has the interpretation and to tell the king to hold off execution – 24
ii. Arioch quickly tells the king - 25
iii. The king brings Daniel in and asks him if he is able to interpret the dream for him – 26
iv. Daniel tells the king that it is a dream of the future – 27-29
v. Daniel gives testimony of God and God alone as the source of this knowledge - 30
C. Daniel’s Prophecy – 2:31-45
i. The Prophecy – 2:31-35
a. A dream of a giant statue – 31
b. Head of gold – 32
c. Breast and arms of silver – 32
d. Belly and thighs of bronze - 32
e. Legs of iron – 33
f. Feet of iron and clay – 33
g. The statue is destroyed by a stone – 34-35
ii. The Particulars – 2:36-45
a. The Head of Gold – 36-38 – Babylon, 625-556 B.C. (Nebuchadnezzer)
b. Breast and Arms of Silver – 39a – Persia, 539-331 B.C. (Cyrus the Great)
c. Belly and Thighs of Bronze – 39b – Greece, 331-323 – B.C. (Alexander the Great)
d. Legs of Iron and Feet of Iron and Clay – 40-43 – Rome, 58 B.C. to 476 A. D.
e. The Stone – 44-45 – Jesus Christ and His everlasting kingdom would shatter all others.
iii. The Practicalities
a. Each kingdom gets weaker in value as time goes on
b. No kingdom can withstand the judgment of God
c. Our God is the conqueror we will be part of His everlasting kingdom
D. Daniel’s Promotion – 2:46-49
i. The king pays honor to Daniel – 46
ii. The kings acknowledges the God of Daniel – 47
iii. Daniel and his three friends are appointed to high positions 0
Transition Statement: Now that we understand the big picture in Daniel’s dilemma we need to quickly look at the purpose of God’s timing to apply it to ourselves. This will help us when we don’t always see his hand at work but we can trust His heart that it will come out right.
2. The Purpose of God’s Timing
A. To Reveal His Person
i. His interest in the activities of men
ii. His preservation of His children
iii. His responsiveness to prayer
iv. God is interested in us and what goes on around us
B. To Perfect our Patience
i. Patience is a virtue, possess it if you can. Found seldom in a woman, never in a man.