Summary: Daniels wisdom and prophecies are not given to satisfy our curiosity. They are shared with us to fortify our faith. Learn from this series to Look forward to the end with confidence and commitment.
Intro: What do you think of next when I say Daniel (Let audience fill in) in the Lions Den
Shadrach, Meshach and (Let audience fill in) ____________ in the __________
So much has been written, spoken and filmed about the end of time. Theories, ideas and opinions about Zombie Apocalypse, killer earthquakes, global warming. It is the age of questions. Question authority, question reality, question everything.
The questions that Daniel answers are not to satisfy our curiosity but are to fortify our faith. There are two major and distinct themes that are in Daniel. The sovereignty of God, in other words God is in charge and control. Because God is in control we don’t have to be afraid of the end we can look forward to the end. Because God is in control we can live a life of purity and integrity to the glory of God. First we have to discuss some issues that people bring up with the book of Daniel and debunk the opinions and ideas not based on fact and truth.
I. Daniel’s background
If we are going to trust that God is in control then we need to trust the one thing He uses to show us He is in control, His Word! Have you ever thought to ask people if God’s word isn’t inspired why it is always under so much attack?
A) The date
Beginning in 233 AD a man named Porphyry became a polytheist and wrote 15 volumes titled “Against Christians.” He did his level best to show that Daniel was written much later than the traditional 532-530 BC. The later dating in 233 was based solely on the desire of a man to discredit and attack Christianity.
We have the testimonies of those who lived during the time of Daniel. Ezekiel was neighbors with Daniel in Babylon. Listen to what Ezekiel had to say,
Ezekiel 14:12-14 “The word of the Lord came to me: 13 “Son of man, if a land sins against Me by acting faithlessly, and I stretch out My hand against it to cut off its supply of bread, to send famine through it, and to wipe out both man and animal from it, 14 even if these three men—Noah, Daniel, and Job—were in it, they would deliver only themselves by their righteousness.” This is the declaration of the Lord God.”
B) The author
The greatest answer to the attacks is from Jesus. Matthew 24:15 Jesus says, “So when you see the abomination that causes desolation, spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place”
Jesus made clear Daniel was a person who wrote of the prophecies in Daniel.
C) The language
Daniel 2:4-7:28 is written in Aramaic. This was the lingua franca (common language of the ancient world) Liberal scholars have said that it was late in the 2nd century. However, in 1947 the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. The scrolls contained fragments of all the Old Testament books. Daniel was among the copies of those Old Testament books. Daniel 2:4-7:28 were written in the ancient Aramaic language known as Chaldee (the language of Babylon). This is the same language used in 7th century 600 to 500 BC documents.