The Story of Daniel
The book of Daniel is a story of people in exile. Daniel and his friends were not citizens of Babylon nor of the Perisian kingdom. They had been transplanted from Jerusalem when the Babylonians came and conquered them. It could be said that Daniel and his friends were living in perilous, difficult times.
The book of Daniel is also a story of kings and kingdoms much bigger than that of four friends who were taken from their homes into a foreign land where they somehow had to struggle to survive as kingdoms rose to prominence and fell to destruction.
Furthermore, the book of Daniel is a story of God's soveriegnty, Daniel 1:2 tells us, "The Lord gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into [Nebuchadnezzar's] hand." Go was sovereign over the fall of Jerusalem and the exile of the young men. Throughout the book of Daniel, God reveals His sovereignty to Daniel, to his friends, to pagan kings, and to us, so that we might see the events of human history as evidence of God's bringing about His plan, to His honor and glory.
It is the sovereign will of God that is definitive, that determines the outcomes of events. Yes, there are people, kings, kingdoms, and events. But the wonderful privilege we have as people of faith, is knowing that our God is King of all kings, and Lord of all lords.
What does this mean for us?
As a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, don't you have a sense that you don't belong to this sinful world? 1 Peter 2:11 reads, “Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts which wage war against the soul.”
It is the sovereign will of God that is definitive, that determines the outcomes of events. Yes, there are people, kings, kingdoms, and events. But the wonderful privilege we have as people of faith is knowing that our God is King of all kings and Lord of all lords.
This becomes particularly important for us during difficult times. The apostle Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 3:1-5:
But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power.
What does this have to do with prayer? Prayer begins with understanding the sovereignty of God. Prayer thrives through perilous times.
Where will we find comfort? I find comfort in the prayers of the One who prays for me, for us (John 17:6-26). Listen to Him.
I ask on their behalf; I do not ask on behalf of the world, but of those whom You have given Me; for they are Yours … I do not ask You to take them out of the world, but to keep them from the evil one … As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. For their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they themselves also may be sanctified in truth.
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