Monday, 3 August 2020 Daniel 4: 19-37
“Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise, exalt and honour the King of heaven, for all His works are true and His ways just, and He is able to humble those who walk in pride.” –Daniel 4:37
The Book of Daniel in the Old Testament is important historically as well as prophetically and we have the greatest assurance of its authenticity from none other than our Lord Jesus Christ who quotes from Daniel in Matthew 24:15 in the Olivet discourse.
We see from the previous three chapters that God had already dealt two times with Nebuchadnezzar the Babylonian King (BC 605 - 562 BC). Once, through a dream of a statue made of gold, silver, brass, iron and clay shattered by a stone cut out without hands, which, as explained by Daniel is still being unravelled in the current history of the world. The second time was when three of his wise men who were Jews, were thrown into a fiery furnace for refusing to worship the golden image he had set up other than the true God of Israel and instead of them being consumed, The Real Consuming Fire, God Of Israel, walked with them in the fire and protected them; even from the smell of fire. Even though Nebuchadnezzar acknowledged the true God of Israel, he did not humble himself as God intended him to, in order to be called His servant (Jeremiah 25:9; 27:6; 43:10).
In the 4th chapter, King Nebuchadnezzar describes his “testimony” of the incidents which made him acknowledge and accept the truth. God warned him through a dream which was again interpreted by Daniel, but in due time the king uttered the ungodly words about the might of his power and honour of his majesty and his dream came true and he found himself in the wilderness eating grass like an animal. His illness is known to science as a form of hypochondriasis in which a man has delusions of being a wild animal, a wolf (lycanthropy), or some other animal – [Expositors Bible Commentary]
Later by God’s grace, when the time was right, he lifted his eyes to Heaven and his senses returned, he understood the greatness of God and declared: “….all the people of the earth are counted as nothing; and He does according to His will in the army of heaven, and among the people of the earth. And none can strike His hand, or say to Him, What are You doing?” - Daniel 4:35
Even though Israelites were supposed to be the light to the nations, they never fulfilled that purpose; instead they often strayed into idolatry, unfaithfulness, disobedience. Into such a situation during the time of Daniel, God used Nebuchadnezzar as His instrument of judgment on Judah. Through this testimony of Nebuchadnezzar God actually revealed to all the nations and Jews alike that He is the “Ancient of Days” in control of everything!
Our God is an immutable God and even today, it is the same—in Matthew 28:18 we see that ‘And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority is given to Me in Heaven and in earth.”’ While we wait for “the stone which is cut without hands” to shatter the “emperors and their empires” of the world and establish His everlasting kingdom, it is a very comforting thought that they are there just because God has allowed them to be. Dear friend, the only thing that is of any worth is getting into this everlasting kingdom— it is free of cost, to anyone who repents and believes in Jesus Christ as his Lord and Saviour—and of His kingdom, there shall be no end.
Promise: “And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to each according as his work is. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last.” – Jesus Christ (Revelation 22:12-13)