Scripture: Daniel 2:20-23
” Daniel answered, blessed be the name of the God of Heaven! For wisdom and might are His. He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and sets up kings. He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding. He reveals the deep and secret things; He knows what is in the darkness and the light dwells with Him. I thank You and praise You O God of my fathers, who has given me wisdom and might and has made known to me what we desired of You, for You have made known to us the solution to the kings problem.”
This story of Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego is so wild. These four men along with countless of Israelites marched to Nebuchadnezzar’ kingdom to basically become slaves for the king. For three years they were to eat special food, drink special wine and maintain a physical form that is “worthy” to be in the presence of the King. Truly this reveals that man looks at the outer appearance, but God looks at the heart. Anyways… They did not want to defile themselves by eating and drinking what the king had given them, so they found favor with the guard and just by eating vegetables and water and staying faithful to their God, they became the most physically fit and in the presence of the king they were found to be ten times more wise than all the other men whom the King met with. Not only were they given a place of authority and influence, but God used Daniel to interrupt the King’s dream that no other magician, enchanter, soothsayer, sorcerer, or diviner could. The King was ready to wipe all of them out, but Daniel asked the King to give him time and he would reveal to him the dream that had been distressing the king and the interruption of that dream. Daniel knew the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He knew His God was a God who delivered and in the natural when it was impossible before man, God would supernaturally bring the deliverance that was needed. So Daniel asked the Lord to show him the same dream and the interruption that he needed to deliver to the king to save the lives of many people. This specific prayer in these verses are the words of gratitude that Daniel was speaking to the Lord after the Lord had given Him exactly what he was in need of. These men were not moved by what the saw, heard or felt but rested in the presence of the Lord to receive exactly what they needed in their time of need. They were men of character, men of principal men not easily moved by circumstance or by peer pressure. They were solid, unmovable. Unshakeable. And they would not allow the pressure of man to change their actions in the present moment. These same men were challenged later in chapter 3 because they were not bowing town to an idol. Because of their relationship with the Lord and being true to their character they were thrown into a fiery furnace that should have killed them in a minute, but instead the Son of the Living God walked around with them in the fire and they came out without smelling like smoke or even being burned.
Out of our relationship with our heavenly Father flows every other part of our lives. These men were challenged in every area of their lives even to the point of death. They would not be moved, because they knew who they belonged to and they knew that their God is a God who delivers the righteous out of the hand of the enemy. I absolutely believe in this phrase ” Your calling will get you there, but your character will keep you there.” These four men were men of strong character and full of confident trust that the Lord was and will always be their help in time of need. It was because they had spent time in the presence of the Lord and asked specifically for what they were in need of that the Lord heard their prayer and gave them exactly what they were in need of. They not only asked, but they gave thanks unto Him and waited for the Lord to speak and then they were courageous and faithful to fulfill the task ahead. And all of that brought promotion and a new place of influence for the highest authority in the land. let us be true to our character, not moved by peer pressure, or by what we see, hear and feel… but allow the faithfulness of the Lord in our lives draw all men unto Him.
Father how amazing but also truly challenging to look at the lives of these young men who stood unmoved in the face of the impossible. Father, open the eyes of our hearts give us revelation light of the hope to which you have called us. We have been engrafted into the vine… we are no longer, slaves to sin but slaves to righteousness, we are no longer walking around in darkness not knowing our identity, but we are now children of the light because you have given us authority to be, it is Your truth that abides richly in us and it is Your love that sustains us, encourages us and strengthens us to be men and woman of character. You have incredible plans ahead, and we need to walk in the light as you are in the light to allow our character to be molded more and more into who were are in You. Thank you Father for examples of ordinary men who knew their God and who did amazing exploits to help point people to Your Son, Jesus.
In Jesus’ mighty name…amen!