GOD REVEALS MYSTERIES (HIDDEN THINGS) ()Pst. Benard Kariuki, October 8, 2017
Part of the Daniel Series series, preached at a Sunday 1st Service service
Daniel 2:1 – 19
The Bible accounts that in the second year of Nebuchadnezzar’s leadership in Babylon, he had dreams, note that it wasn’t just one dream, but dreams. The Bible does not give a final figure as to the number of dreams he had – but gives the impression they were several. Because of these dreams Scripture further chronicles that the Kings mind was out-of-focus. In the words of the Bible two things happened to him as a result of this various dreams:
1. He was troubled; troubled and agitated (tense) (AMP), He was worried (GNT), deeply disturbed, and Disturbing dreams. This means he was anxious and as we all know, when you are troubled, especially as a leader you do not lead well. The second thing was that…
2. The King could not sleep: this made him man up and decide, I need to seek help, from whatever corner.
In his anxiety and lack of sleep, King Nebuchadnezzar, summoned the magicians and enchanters, to tell him what he had dreamed. Some people maintain that the reason he was asking for the dream to be shared with him was because he had perfectly forgotten all the dreams. The King was also deeply troubled he could not remember anything. His world was an anxious one if not an overwhelming mess.
When the best of Babylon magicians and enchanters came in and stood before the king, he said to them, "I have had a dream that troubles me and I want to know what it means." Then the enchanters answered the king in Aramaic, "O king, live forever! Tell your servants the dream, and we will interpret it." The apprehensive and sleepy king told them: “This is what I have firmly decided: If you do not tell me what my dream was and interpret it, I will have you cut into pieces and your houses turned into piles of rubble. He goes on to tell them: “But if you tell me the dream and explain it, you will receive from me gifts and rewards and great honor. So he reminds them his demand: “tell me the dream and interpret it for me." The Magicians seem to have misunderstood the king’s demand, in all their career and training they were never taught on how to tour into someone’s dream world, fetch the dream as it happened and retell it to the detail.
In all their career and their lives, they had never received such a request. So they only heard what they wanted to hear. No wonder they replied, "Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will interpret it." In their local campuses they were only taught how to interpret dreams. The King retorted "I am certain that you are trying to gain time, because you realize that this is what I have firmly decided: If you do not tell me the dream, there is just one penalty for you. Being cut into pieces and their livelihood turned into ruins.
The soothsayers gave the king four well thought out answers:
a) There is not a man on earth who can do what the king asks!
b) No king, however great and mighty, has ever asked such a thing of any magician or enchanter or astrologer.
c) What the king asks is too difficult.
d) No one can reveal it to the king except the gods, and they do not live among men."
To the distressed and lethargic King Nebuchadnezzar all these objective rejoinders sounded like lazy and well mounted excuses. The four details made the king so angry and furious that he instantly ordered the execution of all the wise men of Babylon. Without the wise men in Babylon, one wonders; who would have been left advising the King and helping him govern? I hope you and I can pick the danger of making rash decisions when our hearts are troubled and when we are not sleeping well. What follows was a decree from the King: let us together brand it as suicidal, desperate, reckless, and hopeless and morbid. He ordered that all the wise men be put to death, and men were immediately sent to look for none other but Daniel and his friends, not to chat the way forward, or to bring the grand standing to an end, but to put them to death. When Arioch, the commander of the king's guard, had gone out to put to death the wise men of Babylon, Daniel spoke to him with wisdom and tact.
Notice the two words: wisdom and tact. This man: Daniel brings sanity, soberness and a balanced heart and head in a space a space that was craving for soundness and stability. Sounds like the space within which Kenya is operating now. Divisive politics that demand for wisdom and tact. The Kenya’s space long for for trustworthiness and steadiness of God just like Babylon did in the days of Nebuchadnezzar and Daniel.
The Kind of wisdom and tact that we need currently in our nation is available for all of us in the scriptures: “The mouth of the righteous man utters wisdom, and his tongue speaks what is just (Psalm 37:30, NIV).”
“Be very careful, then, how you live--not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil (Ephesians 5:15-16, NIV).”
But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere (James 3:17, NIV).”
Daniel handled the man sent to kill him with wisdom and tact. The first question Daniel asks Arioch, the commander of the king's guard is “Why did the king issue such a harsh decree?" Arioch then explained the matter to Daniel. Daniel went in to the king who was furious and had already ordered for the killing of all the wise men. Notice that he’s not even appearing to share the dream and its interpretation but to ask for more time, so that he might interpret the dream for him, in the near future. What made the violent & furious King listen to a Daniel? I bet it must be what Solomon as a King once observed… “A gentle answer turns away wrath, deflects anger (Proverbs 15:1, NIV).” This was risky for Daniel. No King in antiquity was known to easily back down from their outrageous decrees. Daniel returned to his house and explained the matter to his friends Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. He urged them to plead for mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery, so that he and his friends might not be executed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. During the night the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision. Then Daniel praised the God of heaven (NIV).
Two Quick lessons we learn:
i. God is a revealer of Mysteries.
One of the stories in scripture that openly shows God’s capacity in unveiling hidden things is detailed for us in 2 Kings Chapter 6. Scripture articulates that the king of Aram was in a navy combat with Israel. He would secretly confide with his intelligence on where he will set a military site, specific timings, weaponry, the attack strategy, which direction they will attack first, et cetera. Elisha the prophet would then send word to the King of Israel saying: “Beware of passing that route, because the Arameans are going down there." The king of Israel would then send out the best from their National intelligence service, have the route checked out and the details would be as Elisha would have indicated, to the least possible detail.
The Bible says that time and again Elisha warned the king, so that he was on his guard in such places, and routes. This made the King of Aram Mad. He had His troupes investigated for sharing classified information with an enemy country. He summoned his officers and demanded of them, "Will you not tell me which of us is on the side of the king of Israel?" "None of us, my lord the king." said one of his officers, "but Elisha, the prophet who is in Israel, tells the king of Israel the very words you speak, not only at our intelligence headquarters but in your bedroom." The king at once orders for the arrest of a prominent faithful Prophet in Israel. He doesn’t know that he is trending on dangerous ground, their intelligence discovers that Elisha is in Dothan and the best and strong force is sent to kidnap him.
When the servant of Elisha wakes up the next morning, an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. He is terrified. To which Elisha responds: "Don't be afraid," "Those who are with us are more than those who are with them." His eyes are opened and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. I think in our country right now the enemy has set the camp of tension and fear all around us: the Lord is saying to us this Morning, Do not be afraid, Kenyans. Those who are with us are mightier than the enemy’s camp. God strikes the strong Military division sent by King Aram with blindness, they find themselves in Samaria in the King’s palace, a feast prepared for them, and then they are sent home. The Bible reckons, NEVER AGAIN did the bands from raid or dare attack Israel's territory (2 Kings 6:8-23, NIV).” Our God is a revealer of mysteries.
God is out to salvage marriages, revive churches, and stop countries from genocides and civil wars. Save individuals who are far from Him, He reveals all these to His blameless servants. He discloses the hidden things to his blameless servants. When the Lord wanted to destroy the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, the scripture record: “Then the LORD said, "Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do (Genesis 18:17, NIV)? “Surely the Sovereign LORD does nothing without revealing his plan to his servants the prophets (Amos 3:7, NIV).”
ii. God answers Bold prayers:
Daniel and His friends prayed bold prayers to the Lord, they were audacious to ask God to do what in their times, was not common. There was no known record of people reconstructing a dream from the scratch and retelling it. From Genesis to Daniel, this was a rare phenomenal. Even the magicians of Babylon reckoned, “No one can reveal it to the king except the gods, and they do not live among men." Daniel is of the same opinion for he tells the King: “No wise man, enchanter, magician or diviner can explain to the king the mystery he has asked about, but there is a God in heaven who reveals mysteries (Daniel 2:27-28a). After the mystery is interpreted Nebuchadnezzar falls prostrate before Daniel honoring him and praising the God of heaven. "Surely your God is the God of gods and the Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries (Daniel 2:47, NIV)."
Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God (Mark 10:27, NIV)."
“Bold prayers honor God, and God honors bold prayers. God isn’t offended by your biggest dreams or boldest prayers. He is offended by anything less.
John Newton once declared: “Thou art coming to a King, large petitions with thee bring, for His grace and power are such, none can ever ask too much.”
For nothing is impossible with God (6 powerful words) (Luke 1:37, NIV)."
Do you believe that God can do the impossible... through you? Joshua believed it, praying one of the boldest prayers ever: “Sun stand still,” and God responded in a big way. What bold prayer is God inviting you to pray?
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