FRIDAY, JULY 12: We pray for Commander Bonnie Mason, who serves as Deputy Director of Chaplaincy Services in Ottawa, and for her ministry to members of the Canadian Armed Forces and their families.
PCC Canada Prayer...
What makes this piece of scripture interesting is the book of Daniel and its prophecies.
This piece today tells the story of king Nebuchadnezzar.
A man who was not a follow of the one true God, but who instead followed his own Gods and how God brought him to worship and praise the one true God.
Who was Daniel?
He was a member of the Judean royal family and was taken captive by king Nebuchadnezzar, who destroyed Jerusalem in 605 B.C. Daniel was one of the chosen few that were trained as officials.
What made them special was that even though they were given this privilege they chose to maintain their worship of God and obey the laws that they lived by, even when presented with a wide array of food they refused to eat anything that was forbidden.
God was happy with this and made them all succeed in the tasks they were given.
Daniel in particular was given the ability to interpret dreams and this made him a valued advisor of the king of Babylon.
In this story the great king Nebuchadnezzer has had a dream and is asking all the wise men of his kingdom to interpret the dream for him.
Two of the wisemen predict that his dream applies to his enemies.
You seen Nebuchadnezzer is at the height of his power and they feel that they may be able to increase their status by pleasing him with their words.
Essentially they are paying him lip service and telling him what he wishes to hear.
He then asks the prophet Daniel to interpret a dream for him.
Daniel interpreted the dream and explains the outcome for Nebuchadnezzar.
He tells him he will be driven away and live like an animal unless he renounces his sin and begins to be kind to the oppressed.
He even tells the King that he has the opportunity to avoid the negative consequences and continue to live in his prosperity if he does this.
The king chooses to listen to the words of those who proclaimed the dream is meant for his enemies.
Twelve months latter he is still living in his pride and arrogance and thus he suffers the punishment that God decreed for him.
For 7 years he suffers as an animal before God restores him to his Glory.
It is through this suffering that the king realizes the true sovereignty of God.
He realizes that the kingdom and power of God far outweigh his power as one of the most powerful kings in human history.
Nebuchadnezzer comes to be fully aware just how unimportant he is in the bigger picture of the world.
However, the part that I do think there are parts that still apply today.
His prayer when he regains his sanity is a clear example of this:
What is our lesson here tonight?
God’s divine providence will overrule anything we do on or in this world.
Whether we are faithful believers or not, God controls everything, so we should live our lives accordingly.
God has the power to give and take away any aspect of our lives and anything he chooses to do is both just and righteous.
We should live our lives to glorify him, praise him and serve him.
It is my hope and prayer that each of you will go home and reflect upon how you can live your life in God’s kingdom in a more Christlike manner.
Let us pray,
Sometimes we may even be these people, paying lip service to someone instead of telling them the truth of their situation because we are afraid that we may hurt their feelings, lose a friend or offend them in some way.
How often do we hesitate to tell someone the truth because of these things.
Gracious King, Forgive, Intercede, Restore
How often can we be like David and tell someone the truth even though we know it is not something they want to hear.
O Lord Jesus Christ,
true God and true man,
you died for our sins on the cross,
and you rose again from death,
and live and reign forever
as our mediator and gracious King.
Graciously forgive us our sins,
intercede for us poor sinners,
make us righteous
and sanctify and reign in us
with your Holy Spirit
to bring us to eternal life.
Gather now your eternal church
from every land.
Give us good government,
and protect us
from the power of the evil foe;
for you live and reign
with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
forever and ever.
I think there is a lot of depth in this story, the is a lot to be learned about human nature and about how we communicate and respond to those around us.
Source: Die pommersche Kirchen-Ordnung und Agenda, p.
Perhaps the strongest message comes through at the end.
We should exalt, glorify and praise God for all he does in our lives each and every day, because whatever he has done he is right and just in doing.