Saturday, July 31, 2010

Daniel 7-12: Prophecy and Stuff. I don't get it, and neither does Daniel.

From Garden to City reading: Daniel 7-12

I've been remiss in blogging the last few days.  I was writing other stuff, and just didn't feel like blogging.  And then I got an email from Human Resources asking to set up an exit appointment on August 16.  The date didn't surprise me--I've known this was coming since April, but knowing the date made everything seem so much more final and depressing.  So I didn't return the email.  I will.  But I haven't yet.

And we're reading Daniel.  The first six chapters are pretty cool, but after that, most of it doesn't make sense.  Daniel, the smartest guy in the kingdom, dreams crazy, crazy dreams. Giant lions with eagle wings.  Flesh-eating bears.  Four-headed leopards with wings.  And another beast with ten horns and iron teeth.  The Ancient of Days is there, and I think that's God.  His hair is white, his throne is on fire, and a flaming river flows out before him.

It doesn't really make sense.  Not to me, and not to Daniel.  In his dream, Daniel asks someone what it all means.  It totally troubles Daniel and even makes him sick.  He writes down what he sees, and he fasts and he prays.

A few years ago, when I worked for Pastor Mike, he did a sermon series titled "The End."  I got to do a lot of research with him and compile sources for him.  The most useful book, especially for understanding the book of Daniel, was actually one that Robert Wachs recommended, The Footsteps of the Messiah by Arnold Fruchtenbaum.  I recommend this book if you enjoy studying end times prophecy.  Otherwise, read the dreams and ask God to speak to you.

We may indeed be living in the end times.  Or we may, like Daniel, go our way till the end, rest, and then rise to receive our allotted inheritance.  (Daniel 12:13)

Either way, we want to serve God with all our hears.

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