Book of Daniel, Chapter 2 (Audio)

In our previous lesson the book of Daniel chapter one, we learned how the Jewish people were taken into captivity to Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar. Amongst them, some of the royal people -Daniel, Hananiah Mishael, and  Azariah whose names were later changed to Belteshazaar, Shadrach, Meshach, and  Abed-Nego.  If we pay close attention to their Jewish names, we see that their names all end in (el and iah) because their names ending this way demonstrates their allegiance to the God of Israel. Hananiah Mishael, and Azariah and Daniel.  So, the first thing that the pagan King did when they reached Babylon was to change their names so that their names would not reflect the God of Israel but the new land (Babylon).  However, we know that God would protect them and provide for them; their faith and allegiance to God would stand firm and they found favor and compassion where God had sent them.

As I read and reflect on what was happening in Babylon, it reminds me of my life as a high school teacher.  I’m reminded of how God has sent me into different places.   Some of those places are not Christian places and I had to ask God, “God is this something that you want me to do?” “Is this where I need to be or do I need to go to a Christian School?”  and God said to me, “Read the book of Daniel.” As I began to read the book of Daniel, I found out that, yes, God can send you into places that are different than the church; the rules are different etc;  don’t get me wrong there are good people in these schools with great vision but when we have to practice or study things that we don’t believe in, God reminds us of Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah who had to study astrology, animal worship, incantations, divination and magic.  We know that they did not compromise who they were in the Lord; they didn’t compromise their religious or their moral beliefs.

I don’t question God!  As I walk in these schools, I need God’s wisdom and I’ve watched how God gives me favor in these schools and yes there are some things that we study that may not align to the Bible, but God said it’s information.  You can use student’s understanding of that information to build my Kingdom within those schools.  I watch how God uses so many. He always opens a door.  He gave me a plan for every student. He said, “I need you when you walk in these schools, and be as wise as a serpent and as gentle as a dove.”  I often struggle there, so I seek God for strength. So, me being the analytical person that I am, I had to study out what God was saying to me. “Be as wise as a serpent and as gentle as a dove.” I studied the serpent.  The serpent knows how to blend in with the environment, he’s well camouflaged and there are times when you can almost step on one without knowing they’re there.  God was saying, blend in, learn the environment, be quiet, lay low; I’ll tell you when to attack.  It will be a gentle attack but the victory will be many students being snatched from suicide, being snatched from hopelessness.   You will stand out because of your Christian beliefs, you will never hide that. Some won’t like you because of what the enemy tells them, but I need you to infiltrate that environment and get to know the people there and see what needs to be done and what I am doing in that environment.  Yes, I do my job and teach but God’s eyes sees all, understands all, and loves all.

I had to trust God as I listened to people who sometimes criticize my even being there. I want to scream I need your prayers not your criticism.  This is a battle ground for the lives of our children.  Children need to know who they are and whose they are.  Schools don’t always teach that.  God reminds me to be gentle.

I love our schools and the vision for a brighter tomorrow. I honor the vision. I’m not there to criticize leadership as all leadership is of God and there are Christian leaders and some that are not. God won’t allow me to criticize His leaders and He often reminds me of that.  I’m there because when I walk in, Jesus walks in with me.  God is always ahead of us. God has implants everywhere and, yes, some things are being taught in schools and other places that we don’t always agree with, but God has a plan too.

In Chapter 2, we learn of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream.  The dream foretells of God’s plan to overthrow evil where it exists.  We must trust him today. Yes, there will be suffering but God told Daniel and the Hebrew boys to blend in, build houses, have children and to prosper in the land where He sent them.  I stand in awe of God and know that His plan, His thoughts, His strategies, are far above what I could ever think or imagine. He makes every crooked path straight. He safeguards our travels.  Pray for God’s plan to unfold.  I consider it an honor to go wherever he sends me.  When I am weak, He is strong.

Daniel is a reminder of how true and loving our God is.  He leaves the 99 and goes after the 1.

I pray that His glory be magnified in our communities and workplaces.

Father, thank you for allowing us to go into all places. Thank you as you go with us, as you go ahead of us, as you are behind us; you are our backup.   Give us wisdom and knowledge and understanding to know how to deal with the things that we’re faced with. Open the eyes of your people to know that one individual praying can chase a thousand, and two can put ten thousand to flight.  We need the Army of God praying, as we like Daniel, go where God sends us.

Chapter 2, our next lesson, will demonstrate the power of God that goes with us in tearing down anything that God wants torn down.

I have a student who indicated that he wants to be an engineer in his heart.  Today, he does not really know God.  I asked him what kind and he didn’t know.  I heard God say that he is an engineer to what He needs built in our communities.  Education will be his key to do the work God has for him.

I consider it an honor to share in this victory.

Pray America Pray!