This is the third in a series of verse-by-verse expositions of the book of Daniel. This message was delivered at Hillcrest Baptist Church on the morning of August 12, 2012.. This message deals with the new age beliefs and practices that compete with the Word of God, both in Daniel’s day and our own. This contains an audio recording of my message, along with my sermon notes and a study outline. Please note that the sermon notes are not a full transcript.
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Daniel 2:1-13/ The Dream:
This would be 602 B.C. Three years after Daniel and his friends had begun their training.
Why does it say the second year? The Babylonians didn’t count the first year of a king, so the second year would actually be the third.
When God speaks, it can be very troubling, especially when you do not have the proper relationship with Him.
No one can come into contact with God, without coming under conviction. However, when you do have an encounter with God, no matter how troubling it is, the proper response is to turn to Him and seek His will.
Its important to note that God doesn’t typically speak to us through dreams today. He uses His Word and the Holy Spirit as we pray and seek His will.
Jeremiah 23:25-32 warns us about accepting dreams as messages from God.
Anyone can claim to have a vision or a dream from God, and indeed even Satan can make that happen, but the Word of God cannot be faked. Therefore, all things must be tested against Scripture.
1 John 4:1
The king, like so many others, turned to worldly wisdom.
1 Corinthians 3:19-20
He turned to all the wrong people: Astrologers, sorcerers, Chaldeans. Here, Chaldeans refers to a special class of soothsayers that taught Chaldean culture.
We can see that not much has changed.
In fact, all of these things permeate our culture, even though God distinctly warns against them.
Reliance on these kind of people never ends well.
Pharaoh consulted sorcerers, to no avail but his own destruction.
In more modern times Hitler consulted astrologers, and he met with destruction.
Even some of our own presidents have consulted such, and look at the state of our nation.
It seems there is no escape from new age philosophies in our culture, but what’s worse is the practices have infiltrated the church.
Lectio divina = a form of mantra-style meditation. practices that the Bible speaks nothing of. The mantra type repetition of a thought or a word spoken audibly or silently over and over again in order to help one enter this deeper state and supposedly bring them closer to God. no different than the ancient occult methods except with a Christian label.
included in this is the use of symbols and icons to assist in worship.
The belief that our deceased loved ones are watching over us, or even contacting us. The Bible does not teach this, and we cannot assign angelic attributes to the dead saints.
The idea that we are all spiritually connected through some universal consciousness.
Interfaith movement – the blending of multiple faiths.
postmodernism / relativism = Many churches / pastors will do surveys to find out what people want, rather than going to the Bible to find out what God wants. Its a new age, feelings based philosophy. It uses feelings to discern truth, which is one of the worst tests for truth.
The list could go on and on.
The king was understandably anxious to learn the meaning of the dream.
*Aramaic was the original language of part of the book of Daniel. vv. 2:4b – 7:28.
Like the frauds they were, they wanted to king to give them all the information. Modern psychics work the same way.
The king wasn’t amused, he wanted them to work their magic, and threatened to kill them if they didn’t.
Just in case the threat didn’t motivate them, the king tried “positive reinforcement.”
By now these “wise men” were just trying to buy time.
The king knew that they were just stalling.
By this time the king was determined that these men had conspired against him.
He assumed that at this point they would make up something just to appease him, and he wanted the truth.
They were desperately trying to explain that the king asked an impossible question. Impossible for men, at least.
Just as with Moses and the magicians of Pharaoh, Elijah and the false prophets of Baal, Jeremiah and the false prophet Hananiah, Paul and bar-Jesus the sorcerer, God had exposed the foolishness of the world, and the deceptiveness of Satan.
And ultimately, it was the sacrificial death and resurrection of Jesus Christ that declared the wisdom of this world to be foolishness.
Only in God, would the answer be found.
They said only the gods could know, but they were wrong. . . only GOD could know.
This may have been humanly impossible, but God makes the impossible possible.
The king got so mad that he ordered the execution of all the wise men.
The king sinned by resorting to worldly methods, and then got mad when he didn’t get the results he wanted.
Sin always affects people other than yourself, even the innocent. Sin spreads.
In this case, Daniel and his friends.
We need to understand that Satan cares nothing for his servants. He was willing to sacrifice all of his false prophets in Babylon, if he could destroy four of God’s faithful servants.
Christians should understand that Satan will go to any lengths necessary to destroy God’s faithful servants.
We should never forget that we are in a full scale war, and the enemy is ruthless.
We can’ afford to sit on the sidelines and do nothing.