Summary: We can guard our position and our stand while watching our manners.
THE DEPORTMENT OF DANIEL.
Daniel 1:8-21 2:1-23
What did Daniel have to guide him at this crucial time in life? What determined the stand he would take at the time of his temptation? Personally I can see only one thing. That is the knowledge he had of the Holy Scriptures. That is why it is important to know something of the Word of God. when temptations come, and they will, we can follow the example of our Lord, say man cannot live by bread alone but the Word of God.
Something else worth noting and that is there was no rudeness in his speech in taking his stand. Along with other lessons this is a good one we find in this great book. We can guard our position and our stand while watching our manners.
Due to his disposition, the way Daniel handled himself, the prince of the eunuchs was convinced of Daniel’s honesty. But I wonder if the prince would have been as kind if Daniel had demanded his way?
Yet still another lesson that is valuable in this study. If we live a separated life in obedience to God’s word, God can and often does control men’s hearts for our good.
Even though the eunuch was sympathetic to Daniel’s request, he feared for his own life. After all, he had his orders from the king. Yet Daniel said try for ten days and then decide for yourself. The display of Daniel’s faith is great. Daniel was so certain that God would honor his stand for what is right. So right was Daniel, the food requested by the king was sent to them no more.
Next in our lesson in verses 17-21, we see THE DEVELOPMENT OF DANIEL. The remaining verses in this chapter speak of the progress and growth of Daniel. Daniel was soon to demonstrate the calling and gifts of a prophet. He had already past the first test, that of staying pure and separated from sin. The second qualification he met by giving himself to his studies. God was giving the gifts, an important lesson.
The progress was so great that the king noticed that Daniel and friends was 10 times better than all the rest. Ten days of testing made them ten times better.
Folks, as God’s people, we are in the midst of a world strongly against God and His people. The world isn’t our friend but wants to crush us until we conform to the world. Many are becoming drunk with the wine and committing many sin acts. The world prays on the unlearned, those who don’t know or reject the Word of God.
The Word of God is plain. We have to take a stand on what is right even when it isn’t the popular thing to do. If Daniel had failed in his first test, how great would have been the fall. He would not have made the book. But he did, and he lived to see the downfall of the same empire that took him captive.
The second chapter of Daniel is possibly one of the most important chapters in the Bible. It contains a prophecy that is most amazing. In this prophecy we see the development and decline of world power in the rise and the fall of kingdoms and empires. It would be well if the leaders of our nations would study this chapter.
I guess I ought to say something about dreams here. A dream, as we know it, is something that disturbs a night sleep. There is a difference in a dream and a vision. When God says where there is no vision people perish; He isn’t talking of a dream. But the dream spoken in Daniel is different than ones we have today. In ancient times God said, “If there be a prophet among you, I the Lord will make Myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak unto him in a dream.” God no longer speaks to man in a dream, because we have His full and final revelation given in the Scriptures and through His Son Jesus.
Now lets get into THE DREAM OF NEBUCHADNEZZAR 1. Even though the king had the position of the world’s greatest ruler, it didn’t bring with it peace of mind. Instead he was troubled about the future of his empire. No doubt wondering just how long he would maintain his grip on the then known world. The dream just didn’t arouse his curiosity but rather frightened him. So we are reminded that wealth and power do not produce peace of mind. What really troubled Nebuchadnezzar was the fact of the hereafter. He also felt in his dream was the answer to his problems.
Now next we notice THE DEMANDS OF NEBUCHADNEZZAR 2-11. Because of the nature of the dream he was both nervous and angry. So he called up the scholars that made up his kingdom. The reason I have called you here is that I have had a dream. Now what I want you to do is to tell me not only the meaning of this dream but the dream itself.