Reflections From the Book of Daniel

The book of Daniel was written by and about a man of great faith.  The writer of Hebrews in the New Testament alludes to two stories from the book of Daniel:  “And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets: who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens” Hebrews 11:32-34 NKV).  The book of Daniel is also one of the apocalyptic books in the Bible, giving prophecy of the end-times.  Jesus, in His teaching on the end times, refers to Daniel the prophet, and mentions one of his prophecies (see Matthew 24:15).  In addition,  the book of Daniel gives prophecy concerning when the Messiah or Christ was to appear the first time.  Daniel gives this prophecy more than 500 years before the birth of Jesus Christ.  Finally, the book of Daniel emphasizes the sovereignty of God.  It is important to know what the Bible says instead of what others say about the Bible.  People also like to speculate about end-time subjects.  Speculating can be fun, but it can also be destructive.  I look at what I know about apocalyptic literature in the Bible, and at times I like to speculate too.  But I always need to come back to the fact that the Bible does not tell us every last detail about the end of time and the events leading up to it.  Speculating about the end-times has very wide error bars.  Bible prophecy was not written for us to predict the future; it was written so that we would recognize events when or as they happen.  It was also written to both warn us of things that will happen, and to comfort us by showing us that God is in control no matter what happens.  Knowing your Bible prevents you from being led astray!  Daniel contains more than just end-time prophecy.  It shows us the life of a man of faith, who even though he was in a terrible set of circumstances, was completely sold out for God.  It teaches us about who God is and many of His attributes.  It shows us that God is in control!  And it does provide prophecies predicting the Jewish Messiah and when He was to come!  Daniel provides major prophetic evidence that Jesus Christ is the Messiah!

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