Series Code: ICJ
Program Code: ICJ190001A
00:01 Have you ever been in trouble?
00:02 Have you ever needed some help?
00:04 The world is facing a lot of trouble.
00:07 And it's going to need help from the fourth man.
00:33 Welcome to our series on, The Incomparable Jesus.
00:38 And we're going to look today at these great prophecies,
00:42 the revelation of Jesus Himself about Himself.
00:46 But we're going to start, actually, in the book of Daniel.
00:48 A story you know well.
00:50 Israel had gotten itself into a lot of trouble.
00:54 And for some reason it just kept resisting
00:57 and resisting the goodness of God, until finally
01:00 idolatry had taken over.
01:02 Idolatry is a terrible thing.
01:04 If you look at the history of idolatry,
01:06 you'll find they end up even sacrificing their own children.
01:09 Can you believe it? So terrible.
01:12 So finally, God called a heathen power; Nebuchadnezzar.
01:16 And Nebuchadnezzar came in with his army
01:19 and basically destroyed Jerusalem.
01:22 We won't get into all the details.
01:24 In that destruction, he took with him at lot of Israelites.
01:28 Four of them, Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, Abed-Nego,
01:31 decided to be faithful to the God of heaven.
01:33 And it wasn't long before they were faced with a crisis.
01:36 And when the first meal came out, the first meal,
01:40 it was loaded with stuff they were not supposed to eat.
01:43 And so Daniel looked at the butler and he said,
01:46 "Look, we can't eat that."
01:49 And the Butler said, "What do you mean?"
01:51 He said, "Look, if you don't look good,
01:52 if I don't take good care of you, the king will have my neck
01:56 if you end up looking poor."
01:58 Because they had been enrolled now into
02:00 the university of Babylon.
02:02 And they were going to be in that for three years
02:04 and be educated to help the kingdom of Babylon.
02:08 But Daniel said, "Look, just test us for ten days, ten days."
02:12 And for those ten days they were tested with
02:16 just vegetables and water.
02:18 How about that for a diet?
02:19 Well, it must have been a very good diet,
02:22 because at the end of ten days they looked great.
02:26 And at the end of three years they were ten times smarter
02:31 than all the Chaldeans that went to school with them;
02:34 the magicians, the soothsayers, and those kinds of people.
02:40 But it wasn't long before another crisis came up.
02:43 A crisis that God Himself initiated.
02:46 A dream given to King Nebuchadnezzar.
02:49 No doubt he had been concerned about what would happen
02:52 when he passed away.
02:54 Because, you know, everybody dies at some point
02:57 if you live in this world.
02:59 Even kings are not exempt.
03:02 And so somewhere along the line God gave him a dream.
03:07 A dream that he couldn't remember all the details of.
03:11 Knew what the dream was,
03:12 but couldn't remember all the details.
03:15 And so he called in his soothsayers and his magicians.
03:19 You know, the kind of people that you see
03:20 on the television today.
03:22 And our world is just filled with witchcraft,
03:26 and astrology, and horoscopes.
03:28 These were the people that invented that kind of stuff.
03:32 So he calls them in.
03:34 And he says, "I had this terrible dream.
03:37 I've got to know the interpretation of it."
03:39 And they said, "Fine, king, just tell us the dream."
03:43 And he says, "No, no, no, no.
03:46 I want to find out if you guys are real.
03:48 I'm tired of all the spin doctoring that you give me.
03:51 You're spin doctoring.
03:53 And so I'll tell you what I really would like."
03:56 He says, "You tell me what I dreamed,
03:58 and then I'll know you can tell me the interpretation of it."
04:00 They were just flabbergasted.
04:02 They said, "No, nobody has ever done that before."
04:04 And he got angry.
04:06 He said, "Listen, if you've got connections with the gods..."
04:08 I'm paraphrasing here.
04:09 Putting a little bit of my own conjecture in it.
04:11 "If you know all these gods and these supernatural things
04:14 that you tell me you have connections with,
04:16 you ought to be able to come up with the dream
04:17 and tell me what I dreamed.
04:19 And if you do that, I'll know that the interpretation
04:21 is not just a spin."
04:25 Of course, they were in trouble.
04:27 Got mad, decided that he would just destroy them.
04:31 "They're just a bunch of fakes."
04:33 And so he sent out his soldiers.
04:34 They began killing the wise men.
04:37 And they showed up to Daniel and his three friends.
04:41 Of course, Daniel's three friends didn't believe in
04:43 magic, and they didn't believe in witchcraft.
04:45 They believed in the God of heaven.
04:47 He was their source of wisdom and He was the one they trusted.
04:51 Daniel went into the king and he says, "Look, give me,
04:53 just give me some time."
04:56 So the king gave him one night.
04:58 They had quite a prayer meeting that night.
04:59 Before it was over God showed Daniel the dream.
05:03 A dream that showed a great image.
05:06 It's simple, and yet profound.
05:09 And it's still being fulfilled today, believe it or not.
05:13 We've lived through the history of it for the past 2000 years.
05:15 Actually 2600 years.
05:19 A head of gold on this big image,
05:21 arms and chest of silver,
05:23 and of course thighs of brass, legs of iron,
05:28 feet of iron and part of clay.
05:30 And then astoundingly, astoundingly,
05:35 a huge rock is cut out without hands.
05:38 Which tells you it's supernatural.
05:40 It doesn't come from earth.
05:43 And it strikes the image, grinds it to powder,
05:48 and blows it away.
05:50 And then this rock fills the earth.
05:52 Daniel, as he explains the dream to the king, says,
05:55 "This dream, or this rock, is the kingdom of God
06:01 that's going to be set up.
06:03 And it will never, ever pass away."
06:09 The king was astounded.
06:11 He got down, actually got down in front of Daniel
06:15 and paid him respect, and said, "Your God,
06:21 your God is the God of gods,
06:25 because He has done this marvelous, marvelous thing of
06:29 telling you what my dream was."
06:33 Well, it would be nice if the story ended there
06:37 and Nebuchadnezzar just accepted it.
06:41 But you know, it didn't end there.
06:44 The Chaldeans, well you can guess.
06:48 They were jealous.
06:49 They weren't just a little bit jealous.
06:51 And they had something on their mind.
06:54 They had another weapon.
06:56 And they went to the king and they said,
06:57 "King, you can't just make this proclamation about
07:00 Daniel and his three friends."
07:01 By the way, they gained in influence.
07:03 "You can't just make that proclamation about these guys."
07:06 They said, "Look, you have to understand something.
07:10 The dream has your kingdom ending.
07:17 Do you really... Oh king, live forever."
07:19 You can hear them flattering the king.
07:21 "Do you really want your kingdom to end?
07:25 Besides, king, you know, they may set up,
07:30 they may set up insurrection."
07:32 Now this isn't actually said in the Scriptures,
07:34 but you can certainly understand the conjecture of that.
07:37 "They might set up an insurrection,
07:40 based on this dream, against you.
07:42 We can't have that, king. We've got to do something."
07:44 "Well what should we do?"
07:46 I can just image King Nebuchadnezzar asking
07:49 these Chaldeans that he had depended on so much
07:52 but had not been able to produce the dream.
07:56 And they said, "Well, we have a fix for it."
07:59 And I think they must have inspired the king to this idea
08:03 of a great image.
08:05 And it's pretty brilliant what they did.
08:08 Now this image was like he saw in the dream, no doubt.
08:11 And it didn't have four metals, it had one metal.
08:16 Gold from head to toe.
08:20 Because Daniel had said in his dream, "Oh King Nebuchadnezzar,
08:23 you are the head of gold.
08:25 Or your kingdom is the head of gold."
08:27 But this was from head to foot gold.
08:31 And then he called in all the leadership from all over
08:34 the world, and they gathered.
08:36 This was a big deal.
08:37 This was not a small thing.
08:38 They gathered there. This was pretty simple.
08:40 Everybody had heard about the dream of Daniel,
08:43 but this was the counteraction to it.
08:45 And King Nebuchadnezzar and his Chaldean friends
08:48 were going to send a message to the whole empire
08:51 that nobody was going to rebel against this king.
08:53 So he said, "I want to know that you're loyal.
08:56 I want to know that you think that this kingdom
08:58 is going to last forever."
09:00 This earthly kingdom.
09:01 By the way, that's what the world wants.
09:04 An earthly kingdom.
09:07 An earthly kingdom.
09:11 So he says, "You guys are
09:14 going to demonstrate your loyalty here.
09:15 And so you bow down before this golden image
09:21 and I'll know that you're going to be loyal to me."
09:24 Well of course, when the music played,
09:25 there were three that didn't.
09:27 And there were some Chaldeans there.
09:29 Chaldeans who said to King Nebuchadnezzar,
09:34 "King Nebuchadnezzar, there are certain Jews
09:39 certain Jews..."
09:42 Daniel 3:12, I'm going to read it.
09:44 "There are certain Jews whom you have set over the affairs
09:48 of the province of Babylon."
09:50 Certain Jews.
09:52 And then they went on to say, "O king, they have not
09:55 paid due regard to you.
09:58 They do not serve your gods or worship the golden image
10:03 that you have set up."
10:07 "What!" I can hear the king say.
10:11 You mean they haven't, they haven't gone along with me?
10:16 You mean they had the audacity to stand there
10:19 when the music played and everybody is
10:21 suppose to go along?"
10:23 By the way, I think there were a lot of Jews
10:26 who bowed down to that image.
10:29 These men were certain Jews.
10:33 They were faithful Jews.
10:35 They were faithful because they trusted
10:38 the Lord with their life.
10:40 And they believed the dream.
10:42 The believed that this world is not going to last forever.
10:47 They believed that the God of heaven was going to
10:50 set up a kingdom someday that would go into all eternity.
10:55 And that's what they really looked forward to,
10:59 was a kingdom that would never, ever end.
11:04 Now it's very interesting what these Chaldeans said
11:07 to our young friends.
11:09 Or two the king about our young friends.
11:12 He said, "They do not serve your gods
11:15 nor worship the golden image that you have set up."
11:19 Let me just say this.
11:21 They got this right.
11:23 Worship and service goes together.
11:26 A lot of people take the name of Jesus on their lips.
11:30 They praise Jesus. And they should praise Jesus.
11:32 Everybody should praise Jesus.
11:34 He's the incomparable Jesus.
11:36 There's no one like Him.
11:39 But they don't understand something very crucial.
11:45 Jesus doesn't want just your praise.
11:49 He wants your service.
11:51 Worship and service go together.
11:54 You can give all the lip praise you want to God,
11:56 but if you serve somebody else, you haven't worshiped God.
12:01 So worship and service go together.
12:04 They got that right. They understood it well.
12:08 And by the way, when you get to the book of Revelation,
12:10 Jesus reveals Himself, this is the thing that He wants.
12:13 He wants not only your worship, He also wants your service.
12:20 Your loyalty to Him.
12:22 Loyalty means so much to Jesus.
12:24 It means so very much.
12:26 So they said, "They do not serve your gods
12:28 nor worship the golden image that you have set up."
12:32 Now these pagan gods, no doubt,
12:35 were backed up by satanic powers.
12:37 I don't have any doubt that these Chaldeans,
12:39 and soothsayers, and magicians, and so forth,
12:43 they were getting communication from supernatural powers.
12:48 But what were these supernatural powers saying?
12:51 They were appealing to the carnal nature of man,
12:53 to the selfish nature of man.
12:55 To the nature of man that says, "I want all power.
12:57 I want my kingdom to last forever."
12:59 But Daniel's dream goes against the selfish nature of man
13:02 and says that God is going to do away with this world
13:05 and set up a kingdom, a kingdom, that will last forever.
13:12 A kingdom in which God will not only be worshiped,
13:16 but He will be served.
13:18 When we come back in a few moments,
13:20 we're going to pick up our story.
13:22 Because this ends very fascinatingly
13:26 as we watch the fourth Man as He moves
13:30 to save His three faithful servants.
13:34 Servants who not only worship Him with their lips,
13:38 but they worship Him with their hearts,
13:42 and with their obedience, and with their actions.
13:46 We'll be right back.