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February 16, 2020 | Doug Sauder
Watch our most recent mid-week message here.
This past weekend, we continued “Revealer of Mysteries: A Study Through Daniel” as Pastor Chris Baselice of our Plantation campus took us through Daniel 2. In this message, we examined the dream God gave Nebuchadnezzar, the situation surrounding it, and how the Lord revealed the mystery to Daniel. We also explored the revelations of God and how we can walk in the dreams He gives us!
To watch the message in its entirety, click here.
FOR THE NOTE TAKERS
Let’s recap some of the key talking points from Pastor Chris' message this weekend:
Your Dreams Can’t Protect You from Your Nightmares (Daniel 2:1): There was probably a time in King Nebuchacnezzar’s life when he dreamt big dreams—dreams and aspirations about having all the power in the world, amassing untold riches, and having unmatched authority—and all of these dreams came true! By the time we reach Daniel 2, this man, this king, this leader of the known world, had all the money, power, military might, control, women, servants, and land any man could ever want. He had it all . . . except for peace. You see, peace eluded him.
In Daniel 2, we read about King Nebuchadnezzar’s nightmare. He was troubled; he lost sleep. All of the power, riches, and authority, all the things he dreamt of couldn’t protect him when the nightmare came. And this is a great lesson for us!
Friends, there is nothing wrong with having big dreams, ambitions, and aspirations. Many of us dream about having a fulfilling profession that provides a secure future, a wonderful family, vacations, and a beautiful home. Again, there is nothing inherently wrong with these dreams or with pursuing them, but what we MUST realize, what we MUST understand, what we MUST embrace is the simple and undeniable fact that all of our wildest dreams will not satisfy the deep hole in our hearts. Only God can do that!
We must place our fulfillment, our satisfaction, our contentment, our peace, our joy, our trust, our security, and our hope in Christ alone. Otherwise, when our dreams become reality and they don’t do what we were hoping they would and they don’t meet our every expectation, we will be left with extreme dissatisfaction and a lack of contentment in life. And worse, when the nightmares come, when the trials hit, when adversity strikes, if our hope and peace and contentment is found in anything but Christ, bitterness, resentment, hopelessness, and brokenness will consume us.
Where Do You Run When Things Get Scary? (Daniel 2:2–13): Where do you go when you lack peace but need answers, wisdom, and direction? For King Nebuchadnezzar, he had no peace and he couldn’t find any answers in anything he had. So, he sought the counsel of wise men. More specifically, he sought the counsel of the wise men of Babylon. These people were magicians, astrologers, sorcerers, and Chaldeans. In more modern terms . . .
Magicians: These were the scholars and scribes. In our day, this would equate to psychologists, psychiatrists, and counselors. Now, this is not a bad place to go when you need help. It can actually be quite good. However, what we must remember is these people are all limited by their finiteness, their humanity, and their experience. They are not better or more equipped to provide answers, rest, and peace than the Wonderful Counselor, the omniscient, omnipresent God of the universe, the One who formed and fashioned you. We must seek Him first! Often, He will guide us to the seek out counseling, to get help from trained professionals, and there is nothing wrong with that. But that must never take His place nor supersede the truths of His Word.
Astrologers: These people are similar to today’s tarot card readers, those who speak with the dead through ouija boards, or fortune tellers who tell us our futures based off the horoscope. Each one of these is completely unbiblical and delves into the demonic.
Sorcerers: These people used incantations and potions—the word most often associated with this was pharmecia, where we get our word for pharmacy and pharmaceuticals. This group generally passed out drugs. Today, it’s the same as those people who push pain pills, medications, marijuana, alcohol . . . things to dull the senses and mask the pain. But the problem with the dulling and the masking is that it doesn’t solve anything. Now, is this to say that medicine is bad? That medication for legitimate chemical imbalances is wrong? No. However, there is no doubt that many are given drugs as a first resort without any real deep dive into whether there is an actual chemical imbalance. There is a lot of over-reliance on medication. And self-medication is also a serious issue that truly solves nothing.
Chaldeans: These people were the royal advisors to the king—family and friends; the inner circle. Consider this like Nebuchadnezzar’s posse, his college roommates, his gym buddies whom he goes to when he has trouble with his wife or when he’s not sure what do when a moral conundrum presents itself. Once again, this can be a good thing when done properly. But there is definitely a difference between good friends and godly friends, between good advice and godly advice. We must always seek godly advice from good friends who seek after God.
In the end, none of these people, none of these philosophies or practices, none of these solutions were able to provide the king with answers and he began to realize that all these “wise” men were frauds who offered little more than fancy talk and distraction, but had nothing of substance or truth to give.
So, the question for you today is simple: Where do you turn when you need answers?
Run to Your Father (Daniel 2:17–23): In this chapter, it’s amazing to see the contrast between two men seeking answers. Nebuchadnezzar finds himself extremely troubled and without peace, but Daniel doesn’t seem to be too worried when he asks for a chance to do what the king is asking. Nebuchadnezzar seeks the advice of man; Daniel seeks the revelation of God. Nebuchadnezzar asks his friends for answers; Daniel asks his friends to pray and intercede to the Lord on his behalf while he does the same.
Friends, pray and seek the intercession of godly friends. This should never be our last or even our second resort. It should be our first move, our go-to, our default, our best and only response to the good and the bad, the big and small, the monumental and the minute of life. Whether in trial, triumph, or tedium, our daily standard operating procedure should be centered on prayer to the Revealer of Mysteries, the Most High God, the King of kings and Lord of lords. There is power in prayer—real, profound, untold power. There is power in praying together, in the intercession of believers, in the fervent, unceasing prayer of faithful men and women who desire to align their hearts, wills, and lives to God.
And then, despite not yet having received the answer, Daniel went to sleep. He had peace because he trusted God would move, work, reveal, and provide. And guess what? He did! He gave Daniel a dream of his own.
When life gets scary, when things seem confusing, when answers elude you, where are you running? If you set your mind and heart on Jesus, if you cast your cares upon Him, He will give you exactly what you need and when you need it! Then, like Daniel, you’ll be able to sing praise and worship unto Him for the mighty work He has done!
Share What You Have Seen (Daniel 2:24–30): After having received the answer, Daniel goes back to Arioch and requests an audience with the king. He says, “The secret which the king has demanded, the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, and the soothsayers cannot declare to the king. But there is a God in heaven who reveals secrets” (Daniel 2:27–28 NKJV).
Daniel is careful to give the full credit to God, as we all should be. Everything we are, everything we accomplish, it is all thanks to Him working in, through, and around us to carry out His good will and purposes. It is all for our good and His glory. So, let’s remember in all things to give Him that glory, to point people to Him, to share what we have seen and heard and experienced so others can experience the goodness, glory, and grace of God for themselves!
Quote to Remember: There is nothing wrong with dreaming, but know that all of your wildest dreams will not satisfy the deep hole in your heart. Only God can do that!—Pastor Chris Baselice
Join us this Wednesday as we kick off Missions Week with a special word from Pastor Paul Walker. Throughout Missions Week, you’ll have the chance to meet missionaries from various countries and hear their stories, discover God’s heart for the persecuted church and global injustice, and find out how you can engage in significant ways. You’ll also be able to gain practical knowledge on how to share your faith as a local missionary right here in our multicultural backyard and celebrate with us all the Lord has done and where He’s leading us to impact even more nations for His glory! For more info, click here.
Then on the weekend, Pastor Doug Sauder will cover Nebuchadnezzar’s dream and the interpretation of it (Daniel 2) and show us the king’s response to this dream (Daniel 3). Experience one of the most compelling and powerful stories in the Old Testament and discover how the Lord showed up in this moment and how He shows up in your life today!