Faithlife Sermons

Looking Forward To A Brighter Future!

0 ratings
· 5 views

God gave Daniel visions that foretold of His plan for the world to provide hope of a future, righteous kingdom ruled by the Messiah.

Notes
Transcript
Handout
Sermon Tone Analysis
A
D
F
J
S
Emotion
A
C
T
Language
O
C
E
A
E
Social
View more →

Do You Know What Time It Is?

Before you look at your watch or the many clocks on the wall…I want to know if you really know what time it is from a Biblical viewpoint?
Do you realize how close you are to God’s timetable of future events beginning?
Whether you’ve been part of this church for 25 years or 5 minutes you need to recognize the urgency of the hour... to make sure you are on the right side of the equation…you need to know that not only are you just one breath or one heart beat away from your eternity, the world itself is on the very brink of God pushing the button and bringing the remainder of His plan to pass.
With those thoughts in mind please turn to Daniel 7
While you are turning there let me just give you a “bird’s eye view” of God’s Prophetic Timetable...

Rapture

the next event in the prophetic timetable is the rapture of the church
1 Thessalonians 4:16–17 NASB95
For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.
There are no other events on the timetable BEFORE this one!…the stage is set…Jesus could come at any time!
NASB95
those who know Jesus Christ will not have to experience the last days of judgment on this earth…GOSPEL
For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.
those who know Jesus Christ will not have to experience the last days of judgment on this earth…GOSPEL
our presence, and our influence will be removed because the Holy Spirit will be removed…since we are permanently indwelt by the Holy Spirit that is one proof we will not be here… speaks of the Holy Spirit being removed…since we know He indwells us, that means we are gone too!

7 Year Tribulation

Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, displaying himself as being God. Do you not remember that while I was still with you, I was telling you these things? And you know what restrains him now, so that in his time he will be revealed. For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only he who now restrains will do so until he is taken out of the way.
7 Year Tribulation
We’ll talk more about this when we get to and even more as we get closer to the end of the book...
Daniel 9:24 NASB95
“Seventy weeks have been decreed for your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy place.
Dan
Dan

Millennial Kingdom

Millennial Kingdom

“Seventy weeks have been decreed for your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy place.
Millennial Kingdom
There are some other events that transpire in between those events that we will talk about at a later date…but what we see here in is Jesus Christ, the Son of Man will return and establish his Millennial Kingdom on this earth, seated on the throne of David, in direct fulfillment of His promises to the nation of Israel.
is Jesus Christ, the Son of Man will return and establish his Millennial Kingdom on this earth, seated on the throne of David, in direct fulfillment of His promises to the nation of Israel.

Eternal State

Again, some other events will take place between the Millennial Kingdom and the Eternal State..but what we have here is the reign of Christ continuing on into eternity.

Importance of Daniel 7

Where we are in our study of Daniel this morning brings us to perhaps the most important chapter of Daniel…in fact some have even labeled this one of the most important passages of the OT.
marks a literary turning point of the book from historical narrative to apocalyptic visions…it is the transition chapter between the two sections of history and prophecy…it also has extreme significance prophetically because it contains the most comprehensive and detailed prophecy of future events to be found anywhere in the Old Testament.
The first six chapters of Daniel are historical narrative…actual historical accounts like you read in history books...
The next 6 chapters of Daniel are prophetic.
Let’s focus for a moment on the thrust of this book…God took Daniel and his friends as Jewish teenagers into a foreign land. Babylon was far away from their home, far away from their parents, far away from everything they were accustomed to…actual historical accounts confirm what the Bible says about Nebuchadnezzar conquering Judah around 605 BC.
Let’s focus for a moment on the thrust of this book…God took Daniel and his friends as Jewish teenagers into a foreign land. Babylon was far away from his home, far away from his parents, far away from everything he was accustomed to…actual historical accounts confirm what the Bible says about Nebuchadnezzar conquering Judah around 605 BC.
are necessary for understanding what comes in the latter part of the book…they demonstrated the power and sovereignty of God to prepare them for what was coming.
God in His sovereignty allowed all this happen and raised up Daniel and his friends to be the much needed example of faithfulness in a dark time…it was a corrupt and troubled world and God’s people needed examples...
Daniel is a much needed book for today because much like the people of Daniel’s time, we are living in a corrupt and troubled world and God’s people need to know how we can live faithfully in our time.
If Daniel’s God could deliver from lions and from the fire, He also can miraculously predict the future.
will help us.

God’s message to his people through Daniel was that He was in control and the nation of Israel would endure the Time of the Gentiles domination over them

will help us.

Daniel is Not Organized Chronologically

read [through “dream”]
[through “dream”]
if you observe the text you see the king in power at the time of this vision is Belshazzar…but at the beginning and end of , Cyrus and Darius the Mede are mentioned...
, Cyrus and Darius the Mede are mentioned...
Belshazzar was the last king of Babylon was identified in through the handwriting on the wall incident.
through the handwriting on the wall incident.
What that means is that the events in chapter 7 took place in 553 BC because the verse says, it was the first year of Belshazzar’s reignand extra-biblical records (secular historical documents) inform us Belshazzar’s rule began in 553 BC...Chronologically, chapter 7 fits between chapters 5 and 6.
Chronologically, chapter 7 fits between chapters 5 and 6.
no one knows for sure as to why Daniel wrote it this way...some think that he chose to give the information in chapters 5 and 6 to demonstrate that his character was faithful....to help us be prepared for chapter 7, being confident that his word was faithful.
read [through “by night”]
Sometimes it is best to view a chapter as a whole and then break down its parts… is one of those chapters because what we see here overlaps with and the dream God gave to Nebuchadnezzar.
[through “by night”]
Daniel tells us we are about to read the description of the dreams God gave to him about the future…this vision centers around the characteristics of four beasts that represent four successive world empires...
Daniel tells us we are about to read the description of the dreams God gave to him about the future…this vision centers around the characteristics of four beasts that represent four successive world empires…when the fourth beast comes to power, a horn on it begins to dominate the scene. Then another important facet is revealed…The Ancient of Days and the Son of Man appear and an eternal kingdom is given to the Son of Man.
Daniel needs assistance in understanding the vision, especially when it comes to the fourth beast and the little horn…the last part of the interpretation of the vision stresses the ultimate triumph of the eternal kingdom.
In Daniel’s time the Jews had experienced the captivity of Babylon as the first of four successive kingdoms as part of God’s judgment of their rebellion and idolatry…so if you place yourself in their sandals…you have to begin to wonder is God done with us?…Did we go too far and now God has abandoned us, thrown us away...
To gain a greater understanding of and other passages like it,as students of the Scriptures we need to understand some things regarding apocalyptic genre…if you don’t understand how this genre is used you can come up with all sorts of interpretations and miss the message entirely.
Apocalyptic genre is a literary roller coaster from earth to heaven and back…it is filled with strange creatures and introduced by a spokesman from another world who suddenly appears unannounced normally through visions…it is filled with numerous literary features such as metaphors, hyperbole, allusions, personifications, etc…all designed to make the writing come alive…I often refer to it as the “shock and awe” method of writing…it is prophecy with a kick

Recognizing Apocalyptic Literature (see handout)

Apocalyptic literature contains some unique characteristics that separates it from other genres…these are taken from the book Cracking Old Testament Codes by Sandy D. Brent, Ronald L Giese.
It considers the ever present wickedness beyond hope. The only hope is total destruction.
See
It assumes the readers themselves are displeased with the evil around them and are anxious for God to provide a solution
See
It calls for the few remaining faithful to persevere until the end.
See
It announces that God himself is going to intervene and judge the world through supernatural means.
See
See
It presents its message in graphic images, visions, and symbols. The message is sometimes shrouded in mystery. Sometimes this message is mediated through other-worldly beings.
See
See
It focuses primarily on the final solutions. The present situation is too serious for short-term answers. The only hope is for God to bring the history of man’s sinfulness to conclusion and to establish a solution that will last for eternity.
See
The material originates in a vision
See
See
See
Although not unique to apocalyptic literature, the purpose is to provide hope and comfort to God’s people who are sorely affected by the present world system
See Ezekiel 11:14-20
God used Daniel to communicate to them they still had a place in history…they would eventually be delivered from Gentile domination by their Messiah who would set up his kingdom and reign over the nations with Israel having a place of prominence.

Apocalyptic literature was designed to provide hope to a downtrodden people who were at their wits end. It seeks to redirect God’s people to the bigger picture: God’s sovereignty in history and His ultimate victory over the forces of evil and deliverance for those who love Him.

Can’t get bogged down trying to understand all the details of apocalyptic literature…remember there will be metaphors and the like, so interpret them accordingly…it is always set in an historical context to grab the attention of the original readers...
So as we come to let’s remember our historical context…the Jews found themselves in exile in a foreign land under a very strong Gentile king. They needed hope that their lives were not always going to be defined in this manner
The OT saints were much like us when it came to knowing when things would happen…we have no idea when Jesus will return…they had no idea when Daniel’s prophecy would be fulfilled…
Let’s redirect our focus to the bigger picture and...

The point of prophecy was not to just inform them of future events, it was engineered to provide a promise of a better world that would encourage them to live correctly now.

Apocalyptic Genre

Symbolism through the use of metaphors is often a key element in this type of literature…sometimes they are explained in the text or in other passages of Scripture…it should be understood as an actual account of what the writer saw and heard.
Apocalyptic genre was used to communicate truth in a dramatic way to people in crisis mode who needed to know something better was coming...
Some people try to make sense of every detail and get frustrated because they can’t fully understand it…so they just don’t bother to examine it...We are not going to shy away from it…view it as the “shock and awe”, dramatic way of communicating truth…one of the best rules for interpreting Scripture, especially in the realm of prophecy is to accept the plain sense of the text unless there is good reason not to… “If the plain sense makes good sense, seek no other sense.”
So to find the plain sense of the text we need to place ourselves in the sandals of the original readers…what message would they have taken from Daniel’s vision here in ?

Main Point: A Better Day Is Coming, So Stay Faithful.

God wants his people to know that even though the captivity was over, the time of Gentile domination will continue and only get worse, until such a time that He intervenes to establish His kingdom with His Son being crowned the King…a better day is coming…stay faithful
That message is true for us as well…a better day is coming, so stay faithful and know what is going to happen and don’t lose sight that God is in control.
God keeps it simple by revealing two kingdoms for us to choose from…wait a minute…did you say two…Pastor Kevin I thought there were six kingdoms…technically yes, God reveals six kingdoms in this chapter…but ultimately it comes down to just two…Kingdom of Satan (man’s kingdoms, world’s kingdoms are ultimately seen as belonging to Satan) and Kingdom of God
That message is true for us as well…a better day is coming, so stay faithful and know what is going to happen and don’t lose sight that God is in control.
There is a real contrast here between the kingdoms of men and the kingdom of God and we’ve got to make sure we’ve choosen the right kingdom.
2 Elements to consider to remind us a better day is coming that ought to encourage us to stay faithful in difficult days.

Consider The Demise of Worldly Governments (1-8 & 15-25)

breaks down into two parts…Daniel’s Vision and then the Interpretation of the Vision.
Verses 1-8 provide a description of the beasts…verses 15-25 provide the interpretation
First year of Belshazzar…so chronologically this vision occurred before the events of & …before the handwriting on the wall where God told Belshazzar he was spiritually worthless and Babylon would fall to the Medes & Persians…before that ever happened God gave this vision to Daniel…secular historical records indicate his first year to have begun in 533 BC…
First year of Belshazzar…so chronologically this vision occurred before the events of & …before the handwriting on the wall where God told Belshazzar he was spiritually worthless and Babylon would fall to the Medes & Persians…before that ever happened God gave this vision to Daniel…secular historical records indicate his first year to have begun in 533 BC…
Daniel summarizes for us what he saw to assure the Jews they still had a part in history…the point of using apocalyptic genre is to refocus their (and our) minds on the truth…the Time of Gentile domination will be long, hard and even deadly, but Israel will survive all this and have a significant role in the end times.
Consider the Examination of the Vision (1-14)

Human Governments Are In Constant Chaos.

The Four Winds and the Great Sea (2)

The Four Winds and the Great Sea (2)
In verse 3 the beasts are seen coming from the sea and in verse 17 they are seen coming from the earth interprets the sea to be symbolic of the earth and the beasts that rise from the sea are great earthly kingdoms
refers to the sea as the earth
The sea regularly stands for the peoples or nations of the earth symbolically in Scripture…
The idea here is that the peoples of the earth are portrayed as a great sea of humanity in a constant state of unrest, chaos and turmoil…apt description of our time isn’t it?
Four winds denotes the four directions of the earth and signifies the havoc created is universal. The sea being tormented seems to indicate a continual stirring up during the rise and fall of all four empires.

Human Governments Are Beast-like.

If you remember our study of , you will remember that God gave the Gentile King Nebuchadnezzar a dream regarding his part in God’s future plans…it was a dream about a statue with a head of gold, chest/arms of silver, belly/thighs of bronze, legs of clay/iron, feet with ten toes being crushed by a rock not cut by human hands…here in , God gives Daniel a different perspective of the same thing…Nebuchadnezzar’s dream is how man sees human governments, marvelous and valuable, Daniel’s vision is how God sees them…beastly, ruthless, with insatiable appetites for blood.
Four beasts, each different from the others.
In , the angel tells Daniel these four beasts represent four kingdoms.

First Beast — Lion with Wings — Babylon

Babylon is identified in Scripture with both the lion and the eagle — , ; ; ,;
wings plucked...standing like a man and given a man’s heart...
God humbled Nebbie and made him live like a beast for seven years () but then God restored him and gave him a place of honor.
When archeologists unearthed items from Babylon can you guess what they found as a common symbol?…lion with wings…isn’t God remarkable to prophecy something like that...

Second Beast — Lopsided Bear — Medes & Persians

the bear is lopsided because the kingdom of Persia was stronger than the kingdom of the Medes...
, brings this out as well with the ram and two horns with one higher than the other
the three ribs
the Medes and the Persians conquered three nations…Lydia, Egypt and Babylon

Third Beast — Leopard with four wings and four heads — Greece

Think of how fast a leopard is and now add four wings to it…also the leopard is known for its insatiable thirst for blood..
Alexander the Great with his swift armies resulted in the incredible expansion of the kingdom of Greece very quickly and he had an insatiable thirst for more territory…it is said that he cried because there was no more territory to conquer
Four wings and four heads
When Alexander died he had no heir, so his kingdom was divided into four parts and assigned to his leaders.
Remember that God gave Daniel this vision YEARS before any of it happened to encourage faithfulness during times of difficulty.

Fourth Beast — terrifying and powerful — Rome Phase 1

By the 2nd century B.C. Rome had superseded Greece as the dominant world power.
It is a well known fact that the Roman Empire possessed a power and longevity unlike anything the world had ever known…many nations suffered conquest under the iron boot of Roman legions…the extent of its influence surpassed the other three kingdoms.
This is the one that gains Daniel’s attention and alarms him the most…pause for just a moment and remind you to...

Remember Daniel is writing to people who are at their wits end because they are being completely dominated by Gentile rulers…God tells them more is yet to come…it will only get worse before it gets better…God’s people needed to see what these kingdoms were like so that they could look forward to a better kingdom.

This is why is important for us today...
So if you want to put your trust in the kingdoms of men, what you see described here is what you will getbeasts hell bent on the ruthless destruction of others…just look at where we are as a culture…destruction of babies in the womb…destruction of biblical marriage…destruction of biological gender identities…destruction of differing opinions…all in the name of political correctness…if you make the kingdom of man your kingdom of choice, then be prepared for what comes next...
Before we move on I think it is important for us to understand that everything Daniel prophesied to this point about the four kingdoms has come to pass EXACTLY as God said it would…what we are about to examine has not happened yet…since that portion of God’s Word has already been fulfilled, there is no reason to doubt the next part.

Little Horn - Kingdom of Antichrist — Rome Phase 2

One of the things that secular history tells us is that no one nation conquered Rome, it just dissolved but elements of the Roman form of government are still seen today…in this same empire is described and we see that it incorporates into itself all the leading characteristics of the earlier kingdoms…that is what refers to…extension of life was granted…elements of each preceeding empire can be seen in the successors…Rome prided itself on adapting and adopting the culture and civilization of conquered nations as it brought them under its system.
In both the vision and the interpretation of the vision, stress is placed on the ten horns and among them, yet distinct from them, rises this little horn, .
The 10 horns are 10 kings or kingdoms that will exist in the last days…corresponds with the 10 toes in Daniel 2horns were commonly used in Scripture to denote kings or kingdoms…the horns are specifically identified as kings in since these horns protrude from the fourth beast, they have a connection with that empire.
Notice with me that the fourth beast had ten horns…and another little horn comes up and pulls them out by their roots.
10 horns are 10 kings or kingdoms that will exist in the last dayshorns were commonly used in Scripture to denote kings or kingdoms…the horns are specifically identified as kings in since these horns protrude from the fourth beast, they have a connection with that empire…Neb’s image had ten toes…same reference.
In the previous existence of Rome there was no united federation of 10 kings…this is Rome Phase 2
during the last days the Kingdom of Rome will be revived into a 10 nation federation.
The little horn here represents the last world ruler called the Antichrist…in Revelation, John refers to him and his empire as The Beast.
The little horn here represents the last world ruler called the Antichrist.
Antichrist = Greek = anti = against, instead of
He will be both a counterfeit Christ and an enemy against Christ.
He is small at the beginning and then grows to the point where he overpowers three of them and becomes larger and more powerful than the rest…
The uprooting of the three horns symbolizes that three kings/nations will be conquered by the new ruler…uprooting denotes a violent overthrow and does not imply an individual will simply step in to assume the throne…the three horns are not contenders for the thrones they are actual leaders of those nations…by force this little king will bring the three other kings into submission to him and eventually the entire 10 nation federation will be under his full control…how can he do this?... reveals he is empowered by Satan.
The mention of his eyes suggests he has remarkable intelligence, insight and wisdom…he will be extremely clever...
Read
His mouth speaks arrogance especially in blasphemies against the true God…it will be revolting to believers…but the world will be captivated by his personality.
He will wear down the saintsmuch like you and I wear out garments…believers will experience daily harassment until their lives are miserable…religious freedom will be gone () and pressure will be applied economically to force people to follow him and reject religion ()…
He will try to change the set times and laws…best understood as religious holidays and the laws are most likely religious in nature…in other words he is going to attempt to eliminate God from EVERY ASPECT of LIFE.
In Revelation, he and his empire are known as THE BEAST.
He will be inspired by Satan who hates God’s people...
2 Thessalonians 2:9 NASB95
that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders,
Revelation 13:2 NASB95
And the beast which I saw was like a leopard, and his feet were like those of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. And the dragon gave him his power and his throne and great authority.
Revelation 13:4 NASB95
they worshiped the dragon because he gave his authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast, and who is able to wage war with him?”
His dictatorship will last for three and a half years…we’ll explain this more in .
The tribulation is the seven year period of time where God pours out his wrath on the world…it begins with the Antichrist signing a covenant with Israel for seven years and then half way through it…3 and half years…he breaks it and begins to persecute God’s people… uses 42 months…1260 days…all based on a Jewish calendar of 360 days.
God allows Daniel to see this last human leader as the ruler of a coalition that arises from the ashes of the old Roman Empire who will be brilliant and arrogant and powerful…he will conquer three kingdoms that will resist him and by his show of force is able to take control of the whole earth…what we see here fits the other descriptions of him in the Scripture.
see ; ;
Much more could be said about this Antichrist and his kingdom…you’ll have to come back next week as we look at and even more as we progress to the end of the book… but let me pause and ask you consider is this really who you want to follow?
If you are trusting in your government or your political party to create a brighter day for you then you are really placing your trust in Satan’s kingdom…you don’t have to look very hard to see where the world is going…that is all part of Satan’s plan to overthrow God making it easier for him to set his man up as the world leader…my friend it is only going to get worse…GOSPEL

Consider the Description of the Wonderful God (9-14 & 26-28)

God allows Daniel to see this last human leader as the ruler of a coalition that arises from the ashes of the old Roman Empire who will be brilliant and arrogant and powerful…he will conquer three kingdoms that will resist him and by his show of force is able to take control of the whole earth…what we see here fits the other descriptions of him in the Scripture.
see ; ;

Read
While all this is happening “Ancient of Days”, eternal God calmly takes his seat on the throne as the righteous Judge and prepares for the day of judgment against the little horn.
The clothing He wears is symbolic of the absolute moral purity of the divine judge…God is holy and because He is holy, He judges sin…here in this context, the evil empire of Satan and his Antichrist.
His hair being white is a symbol of old age and recognizes his eternal nature…can also refer to his holiness.
Throne of flaming fire…river of fire...fire is often used as a symbol of judgment and the fact the entire throne is engulfed in flames signifies the wrath of God that is being poured out upon the world.
Books being opened…books are symbolic of God’s memory of deeds, words and thoughts of every person who has ever lived…see ; ;
Consider the
Someday those books will be opened and each will be judged by what is written in them...
Book of Life — those written there are forever secure...
Daniel 12:1 NASB95
“Now at that time Michael, the great prince who stands guard over the sons of your people, will arise. And there will be a time of distress such as never occurred since there was a nation until that time; and at that time your people, everyone who is found written in the book, will be rescued.
Revelation 20:15 NASB95
And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.
Rev 20:15
an extension of life was granted...
Those

Consider the Explanation of the Vision (15-27)

Consider the Description of the Wonderful God (9-14 & 26-28)

He is the Eternal God and Righteous Judge

Read
What
Did you see in how this vision affected Daniel?…he was distressed and alarmed by what he saw…that in itself ought to tell us something about the true nature of these kingdoms…be careful choosing to follow this kingdom…the true nature of this kingdom is alarming and disturbing...

Consider The Explanation of the Vision (15-28)

Where we are in our study of Daniel this morning brings us to a very different type of literature…so this is going to be a very different kind of message…so buckle up…my hope is you will follow the line of thinking through this text and it will encourage you to greater faithfulness today.
read
Not
read
By God giving Daniel this apocalyptic view, He wants His people and us to compare the conditions, compare the leaders, compare the results, and then make a choice…Here is the Kingdom of men which is really the kingdom of Satan…and here is the Kingdom of the Ancient of Days…you’ve got to choose one.
Most scholars accept the mentioning of the seas here as a reference to the restlessness of the world’s kingdoms and nations...
In the angel informs Daniel that the four beasts represented four kingdoms…the same ones Nebuchadnezzar saw in Daniel 2.
Nebuchadnezzar saw a great image made of valuable metals…Daniel sees dangerous beasts that ruthlessly devoured people and nations.
To human eyes, the nations of the world are like Nebuchadnezzar’s great image, impressive and important…from God’s viewpoint, the nations are only ferocious beasts that attack and seek to devour one another...Nebuchadnezzar’s vision was from the perspective of man, Daniel’s was from the perspective of God, but they are talking about parallel events.
Both Nebuchadnezzar’s vision in chapter 2, and Daniel’s visions in chapter 7 are visions of the history of man…the Time of Gentiles...
Nebuchadnezzar’s vision was from the perspective of man, Daniel’s was from the perspective of God, but they are talking about parallel events.
Nebuchadnezzar’s vision was from the perspective of man, Daniel’s was from the perspective of God, but they are talking about parallel events.

Kingdom of Babylon (4)

, Nebuchadnezzar saw a great statue with four parts:
the head of gold.
the breast and arms of silver.
belly and thighs of bronze....
legs and feet or iron, and iron mixed with clay.
lion with wings of an eagle
a. the head of gold - Babylon
b. the breast and arms of silver - Medo-Persia
c. the belly and thighs of bronze - Greece
d. the legs and feet of iron and clay - Rome.
The kingdoms of man were decreasing in value and becoming more brutal and beastly
Nebuchadnezzar was so impressed that he payed no attention to the fact that each part was more degraded than the last part...In
In chapter 7, we have world history from God’s point of view.
, he is so impressed by this statue he had one made like it only it was him alone so the people would worship him like they did the other gods…and what was it made of…gold
the point is ---- when he saw a vision of the history of man.....he was still pretty impressed.
In chapter 7, we have world history from God’s point of view.
We move from an impressive looking statue to animals...violent, cruel, destructive, power-hungry beasts.
We also see a powerful, eternal God who will someday crown His own holy Son as the King of an everlasting kingdom.
Daniel makes the contrast very noticeable…there are two types of kingdoms you can be a part of…the beastly kingdoms of man or the good kingdom of God…even though these are scenes that will take place in the future, you can have a relationship with the Ancient of Days right now...
Read

Consider The Effect of the Vision

the first six chapters are primarily historical narrative…actual historical accounts like you read in history books...
the next 6 chapters of Daniel are all prophetic.
Daniel’s vision of heaven is that of a court room setting with the Ancient of Days as the judge taking his seat on the throne with the presence of thousands upon thousands of angelic beings attending God…this is to inspire awe and emphasize the cosmic nature of what is about to transpire...
Ancient of Days is a title for God that is unique to Daniel…it is an idiom that literally means “advanced with regard to days”…it is a reference to the eternality of God and stands here in this context in as a shining contrast to the temporal human kings and their kingdoms…John will use these same terms to describe Jesus in .
The clothing He wears is symbolic of the absolute moral purity of the divine judge…God is holy and because He is holy, He judges sin…here in this context, the evil empire of Satan and his Antichrist.
His hair being white is a symbol of old age and recognizes his eternal nature…can also refer to his holiness.
We are to see God as Daniel does…the wise and honorable judge.
Throne of flaming fire…river of fire...fire is often used as a symbol of judgment and the fact the entire throne is engulfed in flames signifies the wrath of God that is being poured out upon the world is a total judgment…see , , .
there are exceptions to that which we will discuss in a minute, but as we go along you ought to notice the differences.
Babylon is identified in Scripture with both the lion and the eagle — , ; ; ,;
Let’s focus for a moment on the thrust of this book…God took Daniel and his friends as Jewish teenagers into a foreign land. Babylon was far away from his home, far away from his parents, far away from everything he was accustomed to…actual historical accounts confirm what the Bible says about Nebuchadnezzar conquering Judah around 605 BC.
Books being opened…books are symbolic of God’s memory of deeds, words and thoughts of every person who has ever lived.
wings plucked...standing like a man and given a man’s heart...
- Daniel was a Jewish teenager....who was deported to the country of Babylon along with some other choice young people by King Nebuchadnezzar around 605 BC.
Malachi 3:16 NASB95
Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the Lord gave attention and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the Lord and who esteem His name.
Ma
God humbled Nebbie and made him live like a beast for seven years () but then God restored him.
Throne of flaming fire…river of fire...fire is often used as a symbol of judgment and the fact the entire throne is engulfed in flames signifies the wrath of God that is being poured out upon the world.
Malachi 3:18 NASB95
So you will again distinguish between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him.
Revelation 20:12 NASB95
And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds.
God in His sovereignty allowed all this happen and raised up Daniel and his friends to be the much needed example of faithfulness in a dark time…it was a corrupt and troubled world and God’s people needed examples...
God told Daniel this kingdom would fall.
Daniel is a much needed book for today because much like the people of Daniel’s time, we are living in a corrupt and troubled world and God’s people need to know how we can live faithfully in our time.
God calmly takes his seat on the throne as the eternal God and righteous judge and prepares to mete out judgment upon this little horn....
will help us.
Read
Daniel’s attention is brought back to the little horn and is drawn to his arrogant speech and sees the judgment of God upon this little horn is complete destruction…ending the reign of Gentiles over God’s people.
the lopsided bear with three ribs in its mouth
God’s judgment is both just and complete and reveals to his people that the day is coming when Israel will rule over her former oppressors and the nations will serve her.
- let’s see how can help us.....

He is the Promised Messiah Who Shares His Kingdom With His People.

the bear is lopsided because the kingdom of Persia was stronger than the kingdom of the Medes...
, brings this out as well with the ram and two horns with one higher than the other
the three ribs
the Medes and the Persians conquered three nations…Lydia, Egypt and Babylon
it too, comes to an end
leopard with four wings and four heads
Four wings and four heads
When Alexander died he had no heir, so his kingdom was divided into four parts and assigned to his leaders.
This kingdom also ended by being crushed by the next beastly kingdom...
Syria was ruled by Seleucus 1
Thrace and Asia Minor were assi
dreadful and terrifying and extremely strong
There was no beast to compare this to…its claws were bronze...its teeth were iron…it was not like the rest…it was a beast hell bent on total destruction
The Roman armies swept across the ancient world devouring nation after nation and become the dominant world power known for its brutality.
It is well documented how strong, dreadful and terrible Rome was that it is fitting this beast was nothing like the beasts before it.
More to say about this kingdom in just a minute but lets push the pause button...
This is why is important for us today...
So if you want to put your trust in the kingdoms of men, what you see described here is what you will getbeasts hell bent on the ruthless destruction of others…just look at where we are as a culture…destruction of babies in the womb…destruction of biblical marriage…destruction of biological gender identities…destruction of differing opinions…all in the name of political correctness…if you make the kingdom of man your kingdom of choice, then be prepared for what comes next...
Read

Not Chronological

A Choice to Follow Man’s Kingdom is A Choice to Follow Satan’s Kingdom (8, 11-12, 21-26)

The four kingdoms represented by the four beasts have already come and gone…but indicates that each kingdom continues to exist in some way withing the kingdom that devoured it.
Daniel sees something here that Nebuchadnezzar did not see…the last human kingdom on earth would be a frightful kingdom, unlike any other kingdom the world has ever or will ever know…this kingdom even declares war on God!
This kingdom is the Kingdom of the Antichrist described in …it is an evil kingdom that will be destroyed by Jesus when he comes and touches the earth to establish His kingdom.
The judgment of this kingdom is seen in by the stone cut without hands and tumbles down the mountain and destroyed the image.

Notice with me that the fourth beast had ten horns…and another little horn comes up and pulls them out by their roots.
10 horns are 10 kings or kingdoms that will exist in the last days
Revelation 13:1 NASB95
And the dragon stood on the sand of the seashore. Then I saw a beast coming up out of the sea, having ten horns and seven heads, and on his horns were ten diadems, and on his heads were blasphemous names.
Revelation 17:3 NASB95
And he carried me away in the Spirit into a wilderness; and I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast, full of blasphemous names, having seven heads and ten horns.
Rev
Rev 13:1
Revelation 17:7 NASB95
And the angel said to me, “Why do you wonder? I will tell you the mystery of the woman and of the beast that carries her, which has the seven heads and the ten horns.
Rev 17:
Revelation 17:12 NASB95
“The ten horns which you saw are ten kings who have not yet received a kingdom, but they receive authority as kings with the beast for one hour.
Rev 17:12
Revelation 17:16 NASB95
“And the ten horns which you saw, and the beast, these will hate the harlot and will make her desolate and naked, and will eat her flesh and will burn her up with fire.
horns were commonly used in Scripture to denote kings or kingdoms…the horns are specifically identified as kings in …since these horns protrude from the fourth beast, they have a connection with that empire…Neb’s image had ten toes…same reference

AKA: The Kingdom of the Antichrist

The little horn here represents the last world ruler called the Antichrist.
Greek = anti = against, instead of
little horn is small at the beginning and then grows to the point where it overpowers three of them and becomes larger than the rest…
he will be both a counterfeit Christ and an enemy against Christ.
2 Thessalonians 2:3 NASB95
Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction,
little horn is small at the beginning and then grows to the point where it overpowers three of them and becomes larger than the rest…
The uprooting of the three horns symbolizes that three kings or nations will be conquered by the new ruler…uprooting denotes a violent overthrow and does not imply an individual will simply step in to assume the throne…the three horns are not contenders for the thrones they are actual leaders of those nations…by force this little king will bring the three other kings into submission to him and eventually the entire 10 nation federation will be under his full control.
The mention of his eyes suggests he has remarkable intelligence, insight and wisdom…he will be extremely clever...
His mouth speaks arrogance especially in blasphemies against the true God…it will be revolting to believers…but the world will be captivated by his personality.
2 Thessalonians 2:8 NASB95
Then that lawless one will be revealed whom the Lord will slay with the breath of His mouth and bring to an end by the appearance of His coming;
2 Thessalonians 2:8–12 NASB95
Then that lawless one will be revealed whom the Lord will slay with the breath of His mouth and bring to an end by the appearance of His coming; that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders, and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. For this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they will believe what is false, in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness.
2 Thessalonians 2:11–12 NASB95
For this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they will believe what is false, in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness.
Read
Read
Some are victorious — , ,
He will wear down the saintsmuch like you and I wear out garments…believers will experience daily harassment until their lives are miserable…religious freedom will be gone () and pressure will be applied economically to force people to follow him and reject religion ()
Some are defeated — ,
They receive the kingdom —
They posses the kingdom —
an 7:22
They are given the kingdom —
He will try to change the set times and laws…best understood as religious holidays and the laws are most likely religious in nature…in other words he is going to attempt to eliminate God from EVERY ASPECT of LIFE.
He will be inspired by Satan who hates God’s people...
2 Thessalonians 2:9 NASB95
that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders,
2 Thess 2:9
Revelation 13:2 NASB95
And the beast which I saw was like a leopard, and his feet were like those of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. And the dragon gave him his power and his throne and great authority.
Rev 13:2
Revelation 13:4 NASB95
they worshiped the dragon because he gave his authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast, and who is able to wage war with him?”
His dictatorship will last for three and a half years…we’ll explain this more in .
The tribulation is the seven year period of time where God pours out his wrath on the world…it begins with the Antichrist signing a covenant with Israel for seven years and then half way through it…3 and half years…he breaks it and begins to persecute God’s people… uses 42 months…1260 days…all based on a Jewish calendar of 360 days.
Much more could be said about this kingdom…but let me pause and ask you consider is this really who you want to follow? Trusting in man’s kingdom is to trust in Satan’s kingdom…you don’t have to look very hard to see where the world is going…that is all part of Satan’s plan to overthrow God making it easier for him to set his man up as the world leader…my friend it is only going to get worse…GOSPEL
Is this really who you want to follow? Trusting in man’s kingdom is to trust in Satan’s kingdom…by trusting in Satan’s kingdom

He is the Righteous Judge

The most important Kingdom of all is that of the Ancient of Days...
The fourth kingdom empire in its latter-day phase comes to an end along with its world-wide domination...
read [through “dream”]
The expression “son of man” is an idiom for a human being…placing emphasis on the humanity of this person and the fact that he comes with the clouds emphasizes his deity…clouds were frequently connected with theophanies...appearance of God in the OT…it is also how Jesus left the earth and will return to earth…see ; ; ; .
if you observe the text you see the king in power at the time of this vision is Belshazzar…but at the beginning and end of , Cyrus and Darius the Mede are mentioned...
This God-man approaches the throne of the Ancient of Days and God bestows Him with absolute power and authority over all humanity…He is granted glory and sovereignty and all are to worship him…this preludes the rock cut out in that destroys the other kingdoms and parallels .
His kingdom stands eternal, the others are swept away by divine judgment…this is in fulfillment of God’s promise to David that his throne would not end…see , .
Belshazzar was the last king of Babylon was identified in through the handwriting on the wall incident.
The title Son of Man is a Messianic title that Jesus ascribes to himself frequently in the Gospels…82x...He delights to identify Himself with us, even though we are fallen, so that He could relate us to God through faith in Him… “The Son of God became the Son of Man in order that sons of men might become sons of God”
The title Son of Man is a Messianic title that Jesus ascribes to himself frequently in the Gospels…82x...He delights to identify Himself with us, even though we are fallen, so that He could relate us to God through faith in Him… “The Son of God became the Son of Man in order that sons of men might become sons of God”
- Belshazzar was the last king of Babylon ---- and we read about him back in chapter 5 --- he was the “handwriting on the wall” guy.
Don’t miss this this next part…Read , , …Jesus, the Promised Messiah will rule from Jerusalem on the earthly throne of David and His people, specifically Israel, with reign with Him…that speaks of a better day!
What that means is that the events in chapter 7 took place in 553 BC because the verse says, it was the first year of Belshazzar’s reign.
Chronologically, chapter 7 fits between chapters 5 and 6.
Revelation 5:10 NASB95
“You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign upon the earth.”
no one knows for sure as to why Daniel wrote it this way but he tells us the date...some think that he chose to give the information in chapters 5 and 6 to demonstrate that his character was faithful....to help us be prepared for chapter 7, being confident that his word was faithful.
Revelation 11:15 NASB95
Then the seventh angel sounded; and there were loud voices in heaven, saying, The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ; and He will reign forever and ever.”
- some think that he chose to give the information in chapters 5 and 6 to demonstrate that his character was faithful....to help us be prepared for chapter 7, being confident that his word was faithful.
Revelation 20:4 NASB95
Then I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.
read [through “by night”]
The kingdom covenant God made with David will one day be fulfilled in Jesus Christ…God promised David that one from his line would have a throne and kingdom forever…that is the God-Man, the Messiah, Jesus Christ.
Daniel tells us we are about to read the description of the dreams God gave to him about the future…that was how God spoke to them at that time…he would also use other means…Moses and the burning bush, the prophets, and Jesus Himself...
Hebrews 1:1–2 NASB95
God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world.
We are told in this kingdom will last for 1000 years…millennium…it is during that time, Jesus will fulfill the many kingdom promises of the OT…nature will be delivered from the curse of sin (; ) and there will be peace (; )…there will be a brighter day…all those who are identified with Christ in his death, burial and resurrection by faith WILL SHARE IN THE GLORY OF THIS KINGDOM.
At that time, the Bible was not yet completed…and today since the completion of the Scripture, we don't expect to receive revelation from God the same way He gave it to Daniel...
- then much of God’s revelation came through the ministry of Christ on earth…and at the completion of that period of time, Jesus told His disciples that when He left the earth---the Holy Spirit would come, and guide them in all truth.....

Lesson For Life — Find Comfort In the Promises of God

2. Before the Bible was completed, God spoke to human beings in a variety of ways.
Daniel was given a vision that described the vast sweep of history beginning with Babylon and ending with the 1000 year reign of Christ on earth…that was to be a message of comfort to his people who were exiled…one day the Messiah will come, your suffering will end, and you will reign with Him.
- he spoke to Moses in a burning bush, he revealed himself in visions and dreams, he gave a number of different people predictive prophecy.....
then much of God’s revelation came through the ministry of Christ on earth…and at the completion of that period of time, Jesus told His disciples that when He left the earth---the Holy Spirit would come, and guide them in all truth.....
As the NT church, we anxiously await the return of our Savior when we hear the trumpet blast and we meet Him in the air……Believer, are you ready to hear that trumpet? Find comfort in knowing that this too shall pass…the suffering we face now is only temporary…there is a better day ahead…unbeliever, the time for you to respond is now…you’ve got to make a decision here today of what you will do with God’s plan....GOSPEL.
God’s Word can be trusted because God can be trusted…find comfort in knowing that God will bring about His perfect plan, and those whom He claims as His, are guaranteed a glorious future.
- that’s why the book of Hebrews begins with the words, - God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son…

When it is time for the millennial kingdom to begin, we will come back with Him with perfect bodies and perfect souls with a perfect desire to serve Him…a better day is coming…hold on…stay faithful!

- then much of God’s revelation came through the ministry of Christ on earth…and at the completion of that period of time, Jesus told His disciples that when He left the earth---the Holy Spirit would come, and guide them in all truth.....
- they in turn, wrote the books that we know as the New Testament, which God says were inspired by Him....or breathed out by Him.....
- and once the Bible was completed....there was no need for dreams or additional revelation...which is why the Bible ends with the command not to add anything to it, or take anything from it.
- point is --- we don't expect to receive revelation today the way Daniel received it in this text.
Read
One of the things we need to do as good students of the Scripture is to look for oft repeated phrases, clauses, words etc. not just in the immediate context of the surrounding verses, but also in other areas of the book being studied and then the Bible as a whole...
Did you see it…the number four…that ought to jump start the though process…and it ought to point you back to and the dream God gave to Nebuchadnezzar…it was a vision of the future in chapter 2, it was a large statue…how many parts did we see on that statue…four…
- why?
- because back when God gave king Nebuchadnezzar a vision of the future in chapter 2, it was a large statue...which was divided into how many parts? [four]…
Here’s why that is important…the visions in are describing the same events as depicted in Nebuchadnezzar’s vision in , simply from two different perspectives.

Two Types of Kingdoms

read
let’s stop there for a minute and notice the critical transition Daniel makes...Daniel wants us to compare the conditions, compare the leaders, compare the results, and then make a choice…there are kingdoms of man and there is the Kingdom of the Ancient of Days…you’ve got to choose one.
- picture like a spilt screen on the TV
- you may have watched the presidential debate on Monday night where you could not only see the face of the person answering the question...but also the facial expression of the other candidate...
4. The visions in chapter 7 are like a split screen TV – with the kingdoms of men on earth, and the throne of God in heaven on the other.
-
read
Both Nebuchadnezzar’s vision in chapter 2, and Daniel’s visions in chapter 7 are visions of the history of man.
5. Both Nebuchadnezzar’s vision in chapter 2, and Daniel’s visions in chapter 7 are visions of the history of man.
Nebuchadnezzar’s vision was from the perspective of man, Daniel’s was from the perspective of God, but they are talking about parallel events.
In , Nebuchadnezzar saw a great statue with four parts:
the head of gold.
the breast and arms of silver.
belly and thighs of bronze....
legs and feet or iron, and iron mixed with clay.
The four parts of Nebuchadnezzar’s status represented four kingdoms:
a. the head of gold - Babylon
b. the breast and arms of silver - Medo-Persia
c. the belly and thighs of bronze - Greece
d. the legs and feet of iron and clay - Rome.
so the kingdoms of man were decreasing in value [they were going down], but the image was still pretty impressive.
Nebuchadnezzar was so impressed that he payed no attention to the fact that each part was more degraded than the last part...In , he is so impressed by this statue he had one made like it only it was him alone so the people would worship him like they did the other gods…and what was it made of…gold
the point is ---- when he saw a vision of the history of man.....he was still pretty impressed.
In chapter 7, we have world history from God’s point of view.
We move from an impressive looking statue to animals...violent, cruel, destructive, power-hungry beasts.
We also see a powerful, eternal God who will someday crown His own holy Son as the King of an everlasting kingdom.
- But on the other side of the screen you see a powerful, eternal God who will someday coronate His own holy Son with an everlasting kingdom.
Daniel makes the contrast very noticeable…there are two types of kingdoms you can be a part of…the beastly kingdoms of man or the good kingdom of God…even though these are scenes that will take place in the future, you can have a relationship with the Ancient of Days right now...
- the differences could not be more obvious.....
Whenever we study prophecy, there needs to be an understanding that God expects our knowledge of future events to positively impact our lives today…so I ask you...who would you like to have as your king?
- you can establish a personal relationship with the true God now.
- yes, these are scenes that will eventually take place in the future.....but you can establish advance placement in the kingdom of God by choosing to know Him, and live for Him, and glorify Him now.
- in a real sense, the question becomes....who would you like to have as your king?
Do you want to serve a kingdom of beasts or the kingdom of the Holy of Holies...
- now, here’s another very important piece of the puzzle before we attempt to apply this to our lives today....

Understanding Prophecy

studying prophecy is very much like driving out west near the mountains.

Think of it like driving in the mountains...

- some of you have experienced this where you are driving across the plains, and way off in the distance.....you see a mountain peak.
driving across the plains and way off in the distance you see a mountain peak.
from that vantage point, it appears like a solitary mountain peak.
but then when you get closer, you say no, it’s more than one peak, packed together.
when you finally get over the first one, you realize there’s actually a long distance between the first one and the next.
so at first they appeared to be one, and then they appeared to be close...but the truth is, there were many, and they were separated by long distances.
- but the truth is, there were many, and they were separated by long distances.
that’s true of Bible prophecy.....
When we look at Nebuchadnezzar’s dream we see 1 statue with 4 parts…in Daniel’s vision we see 4 beasts one right after the other…the reality is there were significant periods of time between when Babylon fell, and then Medo-Persia fell, and then Greece fell, etc.
So where we are today is on that 4th mountain peak…but didn’t Rome fall too?
yes, and no.
- you might say --- news flash, PV, Rome fell, too.
- yes, and no.
In Revelation, we discover that in the last days, there will be a revived Roman empire, that is both a religious and economic union that will instigate a war against Jesus Christ.
so there is a real sense in which we are on the fourth peak.

You Need to Know the Prophetic Timetable

Rapture

the next event in the prophetic timetable is the rapture of the church
1 Thessalonians 4:16 NASB95
For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.
1 Thessalonians 4:16–17 NASB95
For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.
1 Thessalonians 4:17 NASB95
Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.
those who know Jesus Christ will not have to experience the last days of judgment on this earth…GOSPEL
1 Thess
,
- those who know Jesus Christ will not have to experience the last days of judgment on this earth...
our presence, and our influence will be removed because the Holy Spirit will be removed…since we are permanently indwelt by the Holy Spirit that is one proof we will not be here.
2 Thessalonians 2:3–7 NASB95
Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, displaying himself as being God. Do you not remember that while I was still with you, I was telling you these things? And you know what restrains him now, so that in his time he will be revealed. For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only he who now restrains will do so until he is taken out of the way.

7 Year Tribulation

We’ll talk more about this when we get to
- then there will be a 7 year period of tribulation on this earth..... discusses that in incredible detail…[as does the book of Revelation…]
Daniel 9:24 NASB95
“Seventy weeks have been decreed for your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy place.

Millennial Kingdom

then there will be a 7 year period of tribulation on this earth..... discusses that in incredible detail…[as does the book of Revelation…]
- after that, Jesus Christ, the Son of Man in , will return and establish his Millennial Kingdom on this earth, seated on the throne of David, in direct fulfillment of His promises to the nation of Israel.
There are some other events that transpire in between those events that we will talk about at a later date…but what we see here in is Jesus Christ, the Son of Man will return and establish his Millennial Kingdom on this earth, seated on the throne of David, in direct fulfillment of His promises to the nation of Israel.

Eternal State

after that, Jesus Christ, the Son of Man in , will return and establish his Millennial Kingdom on this earth, seated on the throne of David, in direct fulfillment of His promises to the nation of Israel.
Again, some other events will take place between the Millennial Kingdom and the Eternal State..but what we have here is the reign of Christ continuing on into eternity.
- at the end of that millennial kingdom, Christ’s reign will be merged into the eternal state.

Practical Value of Prophecy

Why does God make a point to tell us about these 4 beasts?
One of the things we need to do to be good students of the Scripture is to think about the context in light of the original audience...how would Daniel’s vision affect the people in his time?…if we know how it would have impacted them we can learn how it ought to impact us.
- think about how this would have affected the people in Daniel’s day [that’s the way we learn how it should impact us...first think about the impact on the original hearers.....]
To the Jews of Daniel’s day, they were caught in the reality of these ruthless kingdoms that God characterized as beasts and they needed to see there was another real kingdom that was righteous and ruled in holiness and truth.
- to the Jews of Daniel’s day......
They needed to make a decision of whether or not they were going to forsake their false gods and cultivate a relationship with the Ancient of Days.
- they had every reason......
Although they were experiencing the beastly nature of Gentile Domination now, they could look forward to the coming Messiah, the Son of Man. They could allow that to motivate them to living a holy life, by following the example of Daniel who chose to be faithful to the Ancient of Days for over 70 years!
1) To forsake their false gods.....
2) To cultivate a relationship with the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph....this one called the Ancient of Days
3) To look forward to the coming of this Messiah, the Son of man.....
4) And to live a holy life, like this faithful servant Daniel…[who had maintained his allegiance to the Ancient of Days for over 70 years…]
Some of them did respond correctly to this…because in the books of Ezra and Nehemiah we discover that Cyrus allowed the Jews to return to Jerusalem and rebuild the city and the temple…they renewed their love for God and their commitment to Him.
They would experience some great opposition in the rebuilding project, but they determined to rebuild it.
was not some whimsical fantasy of a lunatic it was God giving humans an overview of history in the future so it could impact them today…now that you know what is coming, how are you going to live right now?
[you can read about that in what OT book?.....the book of Ezra]
- some faithful people later returned and rebuilt the wall around Jerusalem, in an incredibly short period of time, against significant opposition....and you can read about that in what OT book?......the book of Nehemiah......
- so was not some archaic and bizarre prophecy that impacted no one’s life......
- God gave human beings this overview of history in the future so it would have an impact on the choices they made in the present......

Value for Us Today

now, where does that leave you and me?…now that I’ve made you drink from a fire hydrant...
How can we live in the Kingdom of God right here, right now?
I know it took as a while to get here but...
- do you want a God whose ways of communicating are not exactly what we’d expect?

Main Point: Live Today Knowing What Could Happen Tomorrow

4 Elements to Living Right This Side of Heaven Today.

Think Biblically.

- do you want a God who gives us His truth in a variety of means?
- do you want a God who will challenge the way we’re living?
One of the things that ought to jump off the pages of is the marvelous accuracy and reliability of the Word of God.
- do you want a God who will offer you a positive and life-giving alternative?

Much of what was prophesied has come to pass.

Babylon, depicted as a lion with eagle’s wings.
- and do you want a God who gives truth that impacts daily living in the present?
Do you know what archeologists found when they discovered the Ishtar gates that lead into the city of Babylon?...a winged lion...there are replicas of those gates in the Berlin Museum today…show picture
- if the answer is still yes, let’s spend the rest of our time thinking about how to live in the kingdom of God in the here and now.
- there are replicas of those gates in the Berlin Museum today…
What is the significance of and the wings being plucked off the lion and then it was lifted up and allowed to stand like a man with a new heart?
- well, what about verse 3 and the wings being plucked off the lion, but then it was lifted up and allowed to stand like a man with a new heart?
Do you remember what happened to Neb. in Daniel 3?
because of his pride, he was humbled for seven years....his wings were plucked big time.....but then he repented and his kingdom was restored.
Medo-Persia, depicted as a bear that was raised up on one side with three ribs in its mouth
-Does anyone want to venture a guess of how many nations the Medo-Persians conquered? …3.
the nations of Lydia, Babylon, and Egypt....that’s a historical fact.
The reason the bear is lopsided can be attributed to Persia being stronger than the Medes…a well known fact in World History.
Greece, depicted as the leopard with four wings as a bird, which eventually grew four heads.
- Okay World History aficionados what do we know about Alexander the Great and Greece?
they conquered the world with incredible speed.....as fast as a leopard.....
after Alexander the Great died, his kingdom was divided up and given to his leading military generals...can you guess how many?…4
Rome, depicted as a final beast so ruthless and cruel that there is no one comparable animal in nature.
, it was dreadful, and terrifying, and incredibly large, with great teeth made of iron
It devoured and crushed and trampled down the remainder just like Rome
- just like......Rome.....
Rome was the nation that beheaded Paul, and crucified Peter, and banished John to isle of Patmos.
Rome was the nation that brutalized Christians regardless of age or gender.

His Word is Sufficient For Today

the point of all this is that God’s Word came to pass exactly like God said it would…if God can speak the truth about the future and reveal that with incredible accuracy, then you and I ought to give evidence that we trust that Word for instruction for today.
2 Timothy 3:16–17 NASB95
All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.
the point of all this is that God’s Word came to pass exactly like God said it would…if God can speak the truth about the future and reveal that with incredible accuracy, then you and I ought to give evidence that we trust that Word for instruction for today.
2 Peter 1:19–21 NASB95
So we have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star arises in your hearts. But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.
2 Peter
Daniel’s vision was written down not only for the people of his day, but for ours…we all would do well to pay attention to it and allow it mold our thinking and behavior.

Choose Your Kingdom Wisely

Have you chosen the kingdom of man as your kingdom? God has revealed all the kingdoms of men as beastly, ugly and ruthless…you need to see from that every kingdom of man will be demolished by the Kingdom of God…the Ancient of Days…those kingdoms will all lose…God will crown Jesus as the King of His Eternal Kingdom…it is important now for you to make sure you in the kingdom that wins...
- the kingdom of the beasts are characterized by lies and deception....the kingdom of Jesus Christ is characterized by truth that can be trusted.
- now, that affects people today in two ways....
What if you’ve already chosen the Right Kingdom? Can you just hide and wait for the war to end? Can I just live how I want now?…No you can’t hide…you must be actively engaged in kingdom living now…you are to follow the marching orders of the Righteous King…it should never be okay for us to say “I’ll live like I want now...
- and I know that some of you are wrestling with that issue right now.....
- friend, would you allow to help you?
- His Word has come to pass with incredible accuracy and we have every reason in the world to believe that the promises that He has made to us about the future will come to pass as well....
- like this one.....God so loved the world, that He gave His only.....
- and like this one...., - if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved…for "whoever will call upon the name of the Lord will be saved."
- if you’ve never believed in the Bible’s message of salvation by grace through faith, on the basis of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ....if you’ve never claimed the gift of eternal life in Christ that is promised in His Word, we would invite you to do that today.
- this also affects those who have already come to Christ.....
2. As a Christian, you have to decide whether you will listen to and act on the deception of the beastly kingdom of man, or believe and act on the inspired Word of the Ancient of Days.
Those who are on the side of the Ancient of Days need to show allegiance to Him with a willingness to fall in line with His commands…it should be our desire to follow His orders...
2 Corinthians 5:17 NASB95
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.
- that’s why describes coming to Christ as being ... – rescued from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
) - for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God. For, “All flesh is like grass, and all its glory like the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower falls off, but the word of the Lord endures forever.”
1 Peter 1:23–25 NASB95
for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God. For, All flesh is like grass, And all its glory like the flower of grass. The grass withers, And the flower falls off, But the word of the Lord endures forever.” And this is the word which was preached to you.
- and for those who have made that transfer, we should want to know, and more importantly we should want to act on the Words of the Ancient of Days....because we believe His Words are true, that they will come to pass.
Colossians 3:1–4 NASB95
Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.
- like Peter would later say…(quoting in part from Isaiah) - for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God. For, “All flesh is like grass, and all its glory like the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower falls off, but the word of the Lord endures forever.”
2 Corinthians 5:9–10 NASB95
Therefore we also have as our ambition, whether at home or absent, to be pleasing to Him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.
) - for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God. For, “All flesh is like grass, and all its glory like the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower falls off, but the word of the Lord endures forever.”
- a second principle that flows from these verses is....
At this judgment, you are not judged for kingdom you chose, that was taken care of at salvation, once you are in God’s kingdom, He won’t kick you out…however the day will come when every child of God will stand before the King of Kings and be accountable for what you did in service to please your King…your sins are not judged here…the terms Paul used here are in reference to worth…what value does God place on your activities…what eternal value is associated with what you are doing?

Serve Him Faithfully

Read the day is coming when all other kingdoms will be demolished and swallowed up into God’s kingdom…as followers of Christ, we are promised a home within his kingdom…let that promise of your eternal home motivate you to greater levels of faithfulness
Revelation 3:21 NASB95
‘He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.
Revelation 5:10 NASB95
“You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign upon the earth.”
Rev
Rev
Revelation 20:4 NASB95
Then I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.
Revelation 20:6 NASB95
Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years.
Revelation 22:5 NASB95
And there will no longer be any night; and they will not have need of the light of a lamp nor the light of the sun, because the Lord God will illumine them; and they will reign forever and ever.
Rev
This is what God promises to all who are in His Kingdom…
Daniel was an example in his time of faithful service in a corrupt and wicked culture…the visions Daniel received inform them the kingdoms are going to progressively grow worse…their hope was in the promise of God to establish an eternal kingdom that would be ruled by the Messiah…that was what they looked forward too…that is what motivated Daniel and others...
Daniel was an example in his time of faithful service in a corrupt and wicked culture…the visions Daniel received inform them the kingdoms are going to progressively grow worse…their hope was in the promise of God to establish an eternal kingdom that would be ruled by the Messiah…that was what they looked forward too…that is what motivated Daniel and others...
Daniel was an example in his time of faithful service in a corrupt and wicked culture…the visions Daniel received informed them the kingdoms of men are going to progressively grow worse…their hope was in the promise of God to establish an eternal kingdom that would be ruled by the Messiah…that was what they looked forward to…that is what we have in store for us...

Lesson For Life — You Can Have A Vibrant, Growing Relationship with the Ancient of Days.

Cultivate Your Relationship with the Ancient of Days.

Cultivate Your Relationship with the Ancient of Days.

Cultivate Your Relationship with the Ancient of Days.
After reading we should have a clear vision to the reality of the warring kingdoms...
Kingdom of Man — Savage Beasts
Kingdom of God — One whose vesture is like white snow, hair like pure wool, throne of power and glory.
It was clear Daniel had a vibrant relationship with God…and that motivated him to be faithful…to trust…to be a man of spiritual, ethical and moral integrity…go back through the book of Daniel and see how those who didn’t know God described Daniel…what was said of Daniel can be said of you, can be said of me...if you are cultivating a relationship with the Ancient of Days then it will become crystal clear to those around you…when you have that kind of relatonshipare you making the most of your opportunities to know Him, to love Him and to serve Him.
- I want to have a personal relationship with this One whose vesture is like white snow, and whose hair is like pure wool, whose throne is characterized by power and glory.
- friend, can I ask you to look over verses 9-14 and then answer the question.....are you rejoicing in the possibility of having a personal relationship with this kind of God?
- are you making the most of the opportunities you have to know Him, and to love Him, and to serve Him?
- [pic of Coptic Christians being beheaded] -- this was taken from a video released last year by ISIS of them beheading 21 Coptic Christians…
- whose kingdom would you want to be in….
1) The one with the knives, and the hoods.....but also hate-filled hearts...
- the ones behaving in an absolutely beastly fashion....
2) or these Godly men...who were not ashamed of the gospel of Christ...
- children of the Ancient of days.....
- who died, not like beasts...but like martyrs....who’s testimony is making a difference around the world.

- they knew He was the Messiah.....
- they knew His kingdom would be an everlasting Kingdom.....
- but think about how much more we know.....
- He was the perfect Lamb of God....
- He was born of a virgin....
- He was tempted just like we are, yet without sin....
- He modeled for us what godly living was like.....
- he died on the cross for us....
- He was raised from the dead....and now He is building His church with men and women whose lives have been changed and energized by the message of the empty tomb.
- and we have opportunities to choose which kingdom we’re going to function in every day.
1) You can either be threatening, and intimidating, and violent, and oppressive, and explosive....like one of these beasts.....
- or you can be a peacemaker, and a person who’s gentle, and kind.....like the Prince of Peace.
2) You can have a life that dominates others, and uses others, and discards others.....like one of these beasts.....
- or you can choose to love others.....like the loving Savior.
3) You can demand that people serve you, and bow down to you, and do your bidding.....like one of these beasts.....or you can be like the Son of Man....who didn’t come to be served....but to serve, and give His life a ransom for many.
- when you chose to follow to follow the Son of the Ancient of Days…beautiful things can happen…
Related Media
Related Sermons