Wednesday, September 17. Daniel 3 – 5

It’s a long way from Babylon to the court of God.

Not really. God is everywhere. But as we serve God, and as people come to know God, the journey is often long.

This is all emphasized in Daniel 4.

Nebuchadnezzar refers to Daniel as one who has the “spirit of the holy gods.” He’s a polythiest. He never renounces his polytheism, but after an encounter with the true God, he recognizes there is a “Most High” god. After all the years of Daniel’s influence, that’s as far as he got theologically.

But notice Daniel. He is the “chief” of the magicians. How could he occupy this position when the law of God plainly forbade magic? Before we are too critical, we might note that Daniel never engages in magic. But through his connection with God, he seems to be a magician. Daniel never claims to have power himself, but gives all credit to the Most High God. When you live in a pagan world, sometimes you will occupy uncomfortable positions that may bring criticism from the orthodox. You simply have to do the best you can.

Note that Nebuchadnezzar does not do what God commands, to “to right” and be kind to the oppressed, and the result is that God breaks him. Every time a government leader becomes broken through his rejection of a godly lifestyle, I am reminded of Nebuchadnezzar. Christians may wrongly believe that you can’t expect non-Christians to live as Christians live, but God does not subscribe to any such notion. They may not be God’s people, but they’d better behave.

Or else.