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Sunday, December 13 2015

Daniel 2: Nebuchadnezzar's Dream Of The World To Come

"The stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole Earth ... In the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a Kingdom, which shall never be destroyed"

Nebuchadnezzar was a Chealean (see also The Medes And Chaldees Prophecies) who ruled the Babylonian Empire at the time that the LORD (see The Identity Of The LORD God and The LORD God Our Saviour) sent it to take down the corrupt Kingdom of Judah (see Why Did Judah Fall To Babylon?).

One night, the LORD gave Nebuchadnezzar a powerful, vivid dream. Nebuchadnezzar did not understand the meaning of the revelation, so he called his "magicians, and the astrologers, and the sorcerers" to advise him. Nebuchadnezzar was apparently already suspicious that they were frauds, so this time he demanded that they first do something that they hadn't been required to do before - to not only reveal what the dream meant, but to first tell the king what the dream was. Their response was in itself a confession that they were indeed powerless frauds: "There is not a man upon the earth that can shew the king's matter."

Chaldea

"2:1 And in the second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuchadnezzar dreamed dreams, wherewith his spirit was troubled, and his sleep brake from him. 2:2 Then the king commanded to call the magicians, and the astrologers, and the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans, for to shew the king his dreams. So they came and stood before the king. 2:3 And the king said unto them, I have dreamed a dream, and my spirit was troubled to know the dream.

2:4 Then spake the Chaldeans to the king in Syriack, O king, live for ever: tell thy servants the dream, and we will shew the interpretation.

2:5 The king answered and said to the Chaldeans, The thing is gone from me: if ye will not make known unto me the dream, with the interpretation thereof, ye shall be cut in pieces, and your houses shall be made a dunghill. 2:6 But if ye shew the dream, and the interpretation thereof, ye shall receive of me gifts and rewards and great honour: therefore shew me the dream, and the interpretation thereof.

2:7 They answered again and said, Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will shew the interpretation of it.

2:8 The king answered and said, I know of certainty that ye would gain the time, because ye see the thing is gone from me. 2:9 But if ye will not make known unto me the dream, there is but one decree for you: for ye have prepared lying and corrupt words to speak before me, till the time be changed: therefore tell me the dream, and I shall know that ye can shew me the interpretation thereof.

2:10 The Chaldeans answered before the king, and said, There is not a man upon the earth that can shew the king's matter: therefore there is no king, lord, nor ruler, that asked such things at any magician, or astrologer, or Chaldean. 2:11 And it is a rare thing that the king requireth, and there is none other that can shew it before the king, except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh.

2:12 For this cause the king was angry and very furious, and commanded to destroy all the wise men of Babylon. 2:13 And the decree went forth that the wise men should be slain; and they sought Daniel and his fellows to be slain." (Daniel 2:1-13 KJV)

Nebuchadnezzar then ordered all of the "wise men" of his kingdom to be summarily executed. It was an arbitrary and spiteful command that unjustly included those who were not frauds - including Daniel. Just before he was to be executed, "Daniel went in, and desired of the king that he would give him time, and that he would shew the king the interpretation." Daniel then went home and prayed to the LORD for the answer. "Then was the secret revealed unto Daniel in a night vision."

"2:14 Then Daniel answered with counsel and wisdom to Arioch the captain of the king's guard, which was gone forth to slay the wise men of Babylon: 2:15 He answered and said to Arioch the king's captain, Why is the decree so hasty from the king? Then Arioch made the thing known to Daniel. 2:16 Then Daniel went in, and desired of the king that he would give him time, and that he would shew the king the interpretation.

2:17 Then Daniel went to his house, and made the thing known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions: 2:18 That they would desire mercies of the God of heaven concerning this secret; that Daniel and his fellows should not perish with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. 2:19 Then was the secret revealed unto Daniel in a night vision. Then Daniel blessed the God of heaven. 2:20 Daniel answered and said,

Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his: 2:21 And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding: 2:22 He revealeth the deep and secret things: he knoweth what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him. 2:23 I thank thee, and praise thee, O thou God of my fathers, who hast given me wisdom and might, and hast made known unto me now what we desired of thee: for thou hast now made known unto us the king's matter." (Daniel 2:14-23 KJV)

First, Daniel stated exactly what the dream was - the part of the task that Nebuchadnezzar already knew, but had told no one. It was in itself definite proof that, unlike all of the others, Daniel was a genuine wise man (see Daniel's Knowledge Of Wisdom And Science).

The Mountain

"2:24 Therefore Daniel went in unto Arioch, whom the king had ordained to destroy the wise men of Babylon: he went and said thus unto him; Destroy not the wise men of Babylon: bring me in before the king, and I will shew unto the king the interpretation.

2:25 Then Arioch brought in Daniel before the king in haste, and said thus unto him, I have found a man of the captives of Judah, that will make known unto the king the interpretation.

2:26 The king answered and said to Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar, Art thou able to make known unto me the dream which I have seen, and the interpretation thereof?

2:27 Daniel answered in the presence of the king, and said, The secret which the king hath demanded cannot the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, the soothsayers, shew unto the king; 2:28 But there is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets, and maketh known to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days. Thy dream, and the visions of thy head upon thy bed, are these;

2:29 As for thee, O king, thy thoughts came into thy mind upon thy bed, what should come to pass hereafter: and he that revealeth secrets maketh known to thee what shall come to pass. 2:30 But as for me, this secret is not revealed to me for any wisdom that I have more than any living, but for their sakes that shall make known the interpretation to the king, and that thou mightest know the thoughts of thy heart.

2:31 Thou, O king, sawest, and behold a great image. This great image, whose brightness was excellent, stood before thee; and the form thereof was terrible. 2:32 This image's head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, 2:33 His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay. 2:34 Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces. 2:35 Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth." (Daniel 2:24-35 KJV)

Daniel then delivered the LORD's Word of the meaning of dream - the flow of human history, in relation to the Messiah's "Israel" (see the Fact Finder question below), from Nebuchadnezzar's own time, right to the time of the yet-future return of the Messiah to establish His Kingdom of God on Earth (see also What Gospel Did Jesus Preach?).

"2:36 This is the dream; and we will tell the interpretation thereof before the king.

2:37 Thou, O king, art a king of kings: for the God of heaven hath given thee a kingdom, power, and strength, and glory. 2:38 And wheresoever the children of men dwell, the beasts of the field and the fowls of the heaven hath he given into thine hand, and hath made thee ruler over them all. Thou art this head of gold.

2:39 And after thee shall arise another kingdom inferior to thee i.e. the Persian Empire; see The Prophecies Of Cyrus of Persia and The Prophet Daniel: The Hand Writing On The Wall], and another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all the earth [i.e. the Greek Empire; see A History Of Jerusalem: Greeks, Ptolemies, Seleucids and The Prophet Daniel: The Ram and The He Goat].

2:40 And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron: forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all things: and as iron that breaketh all these, shall it break in pieces and bruise [i.e. the Roman Empire; see A History Of Jerusalem: Pompey And The Caesars and Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy].

2:41 And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters' clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay [i.e. end-time "Rome"; see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation'. 2:42 And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken. 2:43 And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay.

2:44 And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever [see The First And Last Nation and When The Church Will Become The Kingdom].

2:45 Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain [see The Mountain Of The LORD'S House Prophecies] without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great God hath made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter: and the dream is certain, and the interpretation thereof sure." (Daniel 2:36-45 KJV)

The rise of Daniel as a recognized true prophet of the LORD had begun. Daniel was made the "ruler over the whole province of Babylon, and chief of the governors over all the wise men of Babylon" - in effect, the political and military Prime Minister and the Minister of genuine Science (i.e. see Einstein's Holy Spirit Formula and Rescuing Charles Darwin From The Atheists) for the Babylonian Empire.

"2:46 Then the king Nebuchadnezzar fell upon his face, and worshipped Daniel, and commanded that they should offer an oblation and sweet odours unto him. 2:47 The king answered unto Daniel, and said, Of a truth it is, that your God is a God of gods, and a Lord of kings, and a revealer of secrets, seeing thou couldest reveal this secret.

2:48 Then the king made Daniel a great man, and gave him many great gifts, and made him ruler over the whole province of Babylon, and chief of the governors over all the wise men of Babylon. 2:49 Then Daniel requested of the king, and he set Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, over the affairs of the province of Babylon: but Daniel sat in the gate of the king." (Daniel 2:46-49 KJV)

Fact Finder: What Empires have existed in relation to Israel from the most ancient time to the present?
See The Empires Of Bible History And Prophecy


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This Day In History, December 13

558: King Chlothar I reunited the Frankish Kingdom after his brother Childebert I died. Chlothar thereby became sole ruler of the Franks.

1204: Medieval Jewish (see also Jews - Three Tribes and Three Meanings) scholar Maimonides (Moses ben Maimon) died at age 69.

1250: Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Germany and Sicily (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation), died and was succeeded by Conrad IV.

1545: The Council of Trent, summoned by Pope Paul III in 1542, opened to discuss doctrinal matters, especially the rise of Protestantism.

Francis Drake 1577: British explorer Sir Francis Drake left England with 5 ships, including the Golden Hind, on his voyage around the world - a journey that took almost 3 years.

1636: English colonists at the Massachusetts Bay Colony organized three militia regiments to defend themselves against the "Americans" - a term originated by the English in referring to the native people (later called "Indians"). It was only much later that the children of the colonists began calling themselves "Americans," but even then referring to where they were, not who they were.

1642: New Zealand was discovered by Dutch explorer Abel Tasman.

1643: During the English Civil War, the Battle of Alton was fought in Hampshire.

1862: During the U.S. Civil War, General Robert E. Lee with 80,000 Confederates repulsed General Burnside with his 150,000 Federals at the Battle of Fredericksburg, Virginia. After hard fighting, Burnside lost almost 14,000 troops.

1916: During the First World War (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars), an avalanche killed 10,000 Austrian and Italian troops in Tyrol.

1937: Japanese forces took the Chinese city of Nanking. Over the next 6 weeks, in one of the worse atrocities of the Second World War, they killed an estimated 200,000 Chinese in what became known as the "Rape of Nanking."

1939: During the Second World War (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars), the captain of the German battleship Graf Spee ordered his vessel scuttled after being encircled by 3 British cruisers (Exeter, Ajax and Achilles) off the coast of Uruguay.

1941: During the Second World War, British forces withdrew to Hong Kong island as the invading Japanese army took Kowloon and the New Territories.

1945: France and Britain announced that were leaving Syria and Lebanon.

1949: In defiant response to United Nations and Papal demands to make Jerusalem an "international" city, the Israeli Knesset unanimously approved David Ben-Gurion's proposal that the sovereign legislature of the state of "Israel" (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Israel Of Judah and A History Of Jerusalem: The Capital Of Judah) be moved to Jerusalem, from Tel Aviv, which it was the next January 1.

1967: King Constantine of Greece and his family fled the country after a counter-coup failed to topple the military-backed government.

1981: In response to the success of the Solidarity Union, Polish communist leader General Wojciech Jeruzelski proclaimed a national emergency and martial law. His action in all probability prevented a Soviet invasion which would have made Solidarity's later victory less likely.

1993: The European Union ratified a treaty creating the world's largest trade bloc, the European Economic Area (EEA).

2000: Al Gore conceded the U.S. Presidential election to George W. Bush, 5 weeks after the very close election was held.

2003: Following the U.S. invasion of Iraq, Iraqi President Saddam Hussein (a former U.S. "ally" during the Iraq-Iran war of the 1980s) was captured near his home town of Tikrit. He was later hung for his war crimes.




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