Summary: Beginning in chapter 7, the focus turns to the prophetic visions and dreams Daniel had through his lifetime. We will look at the details of these prophecies and why they matter to us today.
Thy Kingdom Come
Daniel 7 & 8 (& 2:29-45)
(There is a very helpful powerpoint that went with this message. email me and I would be happy to send it to you.)
We are taking a major turn in our Series through Daniel today. The book of Daniel can be divided nicely into 2 parts. The first 6 chapters make up the first part and deal chronologically with some of the major experiences of God’s work in Daniel’s and his friends lives.
The last 6 chapters are the second part and deal with the visions and prophecies Daniel received concerning future earthly kingdoms as well as events concerning the coming of the messiah and the coming Kingdom of God.
Now before we even start, I want to ask a question. Who cares? Who cares about some prophecy from a few thousand years ago about some coming kingdoms? Most of these have already come and gone? Why do I need to know this?
Well, I think this is important to know for a couple of reasons.
First, it helps us to be assured that God is in control over the affairs of men and governments and countries. He is able to tell us about these coming kingdoms through Daniel because it is part of His ultimate plan.
Secondly, because of the prophecies given that have been fulfilled in very literal ways, even if imagery has been used, we can be assured that the rest of the prophecies, the ones that have not yet come to fulfillment between the time of Daniel and today, will be fulfilled in a similar way.
This should give us great hope and confidence in standing strong and following the Lord even in the midst of governments and rulers who may not be supporters of a godly lifestyle.
Now, this morning, we are going to be synthesizing Scripture from 3 different chapters in Daniel; Chapter 2, 7, and 8. In each of these chapters, there is prophecy given, using different imagery, but pertaining to some of the same coming kingdoms in relation to the time of Daniel.
We are going to begin by reading some parts of each of these chapters that pertain to these kingdoms and I am going to help you organize these kingdoms in your own mind with a chart that relates them all.
Now, going back to chapter 2 of Daniel, if you recall Nebuchadnezzar had a dream of a statue and Daniel tells him what his dream was and then interprets it for him.
This is how Daniel describes the statue to the Nebuchadnezzar.
32 The head of the statue was made of pure gold, its chest and arms of silver, its belly and thighs of bronze, 33 its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of baked clay. 34 While you were watching, a rock was cut out, but not by human hands. It struck the statue on its feet of iron and clay and smashed them. 35 Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver and the gold were broken to pieces at the same time and became like chaff on a threshing floor in the summer. The wind swept them away without leaving a trace. But the rock that struck the statue became a huge mountain and filled the whole earth.
Ok, so in Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, you have these 4 parts of a statue and a big rock that destroys the statue and fills the earth.
Now in Daniel 7, Daniel has a vision of 4 beasts.
Dan 7:2-8, 13-14
"In my vision at night I looked, and there before me were the four winds of heaven churning up the great sea. 3 Four great beasts, each different from the others, came up out of the sea.
4 "The first was like a lion, and it had the wings of an eagle. I watched until its wings were torn off and it was lifted from the ground so that it stood on two feet like a man, and the heart of a man was given to it.
5 "And there before me was a second beast, which looked like a bear. It was raised up on one of its sides, and it had three ribs in its mouth between its teeth. It was told, ’Get up and eat your fill of flesh!’
6 "After that, I looked, and there before me was another beast, one that looked like a leopard. And on its back it had four wings like those of a bird. This beast had four heads, and it was given authority to rule.
7 "After that, in my vision at night I looked, and there before me was a fourth beast — terrifying and frightening and very powerful. It had large iron teeth; it crushed and devoured its victims and trampled underfoot whatever was left. It was different from all the former beasts, and it had ten horns.