Thursday, August 12, 2010

The book of Daniel - Chapter 4 - Nebuchadnezzars Dream of a Tree

Although Neb praised God in Daniel 4 , he still did not believe in
him completely to submit to him alone. Many people attend church and
use spiritual language, but they really don't believe in God or obey

One of the most difficult lessons to learn is that God is
sovereign. He is above all of those who are above us. He limits the
power and authority of all the govt, business and religious leaders in
the world. While we may feel we are free to do what we please, God is
sovereign over all of our plans and desires.

Daniel 4 draws an unforgettable image of what can happen to a
human, no matter how powerful, no matter the state of his relationship
with God, when he allows his heart to swell with pride. No matter how
powerful a person may become self centred pride will push God from
that persons life.

No one rich or poor, powerful or oppressed, healthy or infirm,
enslaved or free, male or female old or young is exempt from the
temptation of being prideful. Pride is a state of mind. Its satans
speciality. We can become proud of our self discipline, sacrificial
giving, self denial, or worldly success and goods. Satan will ensare
worldly Christians by things like power, money, appearance and
position. In spiritual Christians satan can use smugness over
spiritual discipline and they may develop a superiority
complex. Some egos are swollen over what they do and others over what
they do not. Have you ever come across Christians who carry around
worn looking bibles ...hmmmm what are they trying to show.......I read
my bible alot, am Holier than thou. Or people who over testify - over
sharing can also have a strong tendency to glorify man than God and irritate listeners.

Daniel was stunned at the dream and wondered how to break the news.
He told the King he wished the dream referred to his enemies. Daniel
was grieved. Why? after all that Neb had done i.e. Destroying Daniels
nation. Daniel had forgiven Neb and so God was able to use him. Very
often when we have been wronged by someone, we find it very difficult
to forgive and let go. We may even be glad when that person suffers.
Forgiveness means putting the past behind us. Can you love someone who
has hurt you. Can you serve someone who mistreated you. Ask God to
help you forgive and forget and he may actually use you in an
extraordinary way in that persons life.

God demonstrated that Neb was just an ordinary man. Although God
had worked through Neb and allowed him victories, he was only
accomplishing Gods purposes. God warned Neb of the dangers of his
pride and then allowed him 12 months to change. When he didn't, in the
middle of his boasting God made him insane and he lived 7 years in
that state before restoring him to the throne. God showed Neb that he
was in control.

These lessons are clear to us today because of our place in
history. When our attention shifts to our own lives, we often find
ourselves unable to see how God is working. But we do have the
advantage of his word to guide us through life's challenges. We are
commanded to obey him and to trust him.

Trust him with your life today and remove pride from your heart. Bring yourself low so that God may be lifted up.

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