Summary: Sermon that I preached at our Associational Pastor’s Conference.

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DANIEL 5:21B-28A

Abortions are on the rise, Divorces are on the rise, perversity, such as adultery, homosexuality and pornography, is on the rise, but yet we look at the numbers over the last few years for the SBC and salvation and baptisms are down and it leaves us asking “What’s happening?” In fact, I read last week that 1 out of 4 people in the world today are Muslims. That figured out to be 1.5 billion people in this world are Muslims. Where have all the Christians gone? Christians make up 2.1 billion people in the world. Then you add the economic mess. This past year and a half our nation has found itself in an economic crisis, our nation is currently in such an economic mess that people are scared and worried. People are wondering if they will have a job or not, wondering where they will get the money to pay their bills, put food on the table and keep their heads afloat. In the comics several months ago there was a cartoon that had a son standing on his parent’s doorstep and the father says to him, “we can’t let you move back in with us because we’re moving back in with our parents.” You read or turn on the news and the news is doom and gloom and we are left asking, “Where did it all go wrong?”

Then on top of all this you add the stress of the healthcare reform. Whatever your stance is on it I’m ready for it to be over with because I’m sick of all the negativeness between both parties and let me add it’s both sides that are being negative, not just one. So pretty much these last few weeks I have found my self just shaking my head thinking how much longer until Jesus comes back to take us home? But the reality is we don’t know when Christ is coming back so we could be left here on this earth a little longer then what we expected. These things that we are going through could very well just be the beginning of birth pains, which means the worse is still yet to come. Taking all that into consideration, I was reading the Book of Daniel and as I read it the Lord impressed upon my heart some words of warning that we as individuals as well as our churches and our nation all need to hear. These words are found in Daniel 5:21b-28a.

We must remember these words that Daniel spoke to a godless king, Belshazzar, many centuries ago. He said: “The Most High God is sovereign over the kingdoms of men and sets over them anyone he wishes.” Sometimes God will allow us to have what or who we want and let me just say that’s not always a good thing. “But you his son, O Belshazzar, have not humbled yourself, though you knew all this. Instead, you have set yourself up against the Lord of heaven. You had the goblets from his temple brought to you, and you and your nobles, your wives and your concubines drank wine from them. You praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron, wood and stone, which cannot see or hear or understand. But you did not honor God who holds in his hand your life and all your ways. Therefore he sent the hand that wrote the inscription.” Daniel spoke these profound words just before he translated the writing on the wall and understand that when God gave this message through Daniel it was God’s message to Babylon, who happened to be the world’s super-power at that time. “This inscription that was written: Mene, Mene, Tekel, Parsin. This is what these words mean: God has numbered the days of your reign and brought it to an end. You have been weighed on the scales and found wanting. Your kingdom is divided…” (Daniel 5:21b-28a).

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