Does God really help us?

Nebuchadnezzar, the King of Babylon, had just dreamed a dream - and while most dreams simply come and go without leaving any impression, this one caused an uproar in the empire. It almost wiped out the intellectuals in the country.

And it brings into focus the first major truth I want to present as we examine the subject, ‘God Has The Answer To All Our Problems.’

When man fails, God revails!

Nebuchadnezzar, enduring a constant nightmare (Daniel 2:1-3), issues a call for his magicians, astrologers, sorcerers and Chaldeans - and demands they tell him the dream he had, and also give him its interpretation. If they failed, they would be cut in pieces and their houses turned into heaps of ashes (Daniel 2:5).

Predictably, their response was one of astonishment (Daniel 2:10&11): “No ruler on earth has ever asked such a thing! ...No man on earth could ever answer such a thing!”

It was an impossible request. They were only men ... how would they know?!

This is what our God can do with a dream. Though it is lighter than a cobweb, and just as flimsy, death threatened Daniel and all the cream of the intelligentsia of the empire because of a dream. If a dream from God can do that, what will it be like when God Himself comes!

It is easy to terrify strong men outside of Christ - they are all terrified of what might just happen to them. Nebuchadnezzar - absolute monarch and the mightiest man in the whole world notwithstanding - was scared because (as Daniel put it in 2:29), “O king, thy thoughts came into thy mind upon thy bed, what should come to pass hereafter...”

Nebuchadnezzar’s dream was a revelation from God concerning his future - and it turned this king's world upside down!

So what did he do?

What do men of the world do when they are forced to look at their futures?

Unless grace intervenes they begin to look to the wit or wisdom of other men; they do not look towards the living God. Nebuchadnezzar’s dream drove him to man. He cried, “Send for my men, the magicians, enchanters, sorcerers and astrologers to tell me what I’ve dreamed!”

That is how the world always operates: to discover what is going to happen in the future, they send for the fortune tellers and reach for the horoscopes.

Nebuchadnezzar’s wise men claimed to be men in touch with the heavens; men who knew the meaning of life; men who were intimate with Babylon's victory-giving gods; men who could predict the future.

However, when Nebuchadnezzar put their authority to the test by demanding the dream itself as well as its interpretation, they showed themselves helpless. Nebuchadnezzar had simply added to his problem by going to men in trying to find a solution. Now he has an additional worry: first, the dream - and now the total failure of human wisdom. He realised he was surrounded by ambitious pretenders; his solution was to send his execution squad round (2:13).

God gave a man one constant dream - and it started to dismantle what was the mightiest military machine in the world! The whole academic community was at its wit's end, the government was in crisis, and all the might and wisdom of Babylon was shown to be bankrupt.

However, when neither the Chaldeans nor any of their “gods” were up to the task, the Eternal God of heaven provided help (Daniel 2:19&20).

Often in our world we face things that are simply impossible. No man on earth can help us but if we believe in the God of heaven, and are in a proper relationship with Him through repentance of our sin and faith in His Son, our resources extend beyond earthly man.

God can do what no man can do (Jeremiah 32:27; Luke 1:37). Our Lord is the GOD OF THE IMPOSSIBLE! When Man Fails, God Prevails!

When man prays, God relays!

Once Daniel managed to gain some time from the king, he used that time so well. He said to his three friends, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, “Come, we need to pray!” They spent the next hours in prayer to the Lord (2:17&18; cf. James 1:5).

Nebuchadnezzar had gone to the wisdom of the world for help, but Daniel went to that Wisdom from above.

God revealed the dream and its meaning to Daniel during the hours of that night (Daniel 2:19); what could not be known by any other means, God revealed to Daniel at the appropriate time. That allowed Daniel to appear before king Nebuchadnezzar, relate the dream and its explanation, and testify to the greatness of Jehovah before that Babylonian king (Daniel 2:28).

He demonstrated that He is ... A GOD OF INFORMATION.

If you are struggling with a mystery in your life - if you have more questions than answers remember, “there is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets.” Nothing is hidden from God’s sight; no answers are beyond His understanding. When the need to know is there, God always provides the information. His Word and His Spirit are always available to help you find the answer.

A couple of Daniel’s actions at this point should be noted.

1 - Instead of rushing right off to the king, or boasting of the new information he had, Daniel paused to praise the Lord (2:20-23).

2 - Daniel had been given the dream and its interpretation to “make known the interpretation to the king” (2:30).

God had not given His word in order for Daniel to meet with his circle of young friends and ‘share’ it with them, but so that he could proclaim it before kings and nations.

The Lord has given us a Book of wisdom (the Bible) about the past, present, and the future. Within it are the answers to the key questions of life and eternity. This is the revelation we need to take to the whole world!

When man wanes, God reigns!

The pages of history are filled with individuals who have either denied or defied the God of heaven and earth. Yet without exception, though they swaggered around in their own self-importance, it was God who lifted them up or cast them down - including this powerful monarch, King Nebuchadnezzar (2:20&21).

Do not fear those who mock God. Remember that it is only divine grace that keeps that person from destruction. Man’s decisions seem final until God decides otherwise. When man wanes, God reigns!

What was Nebuchadnezzar’s dream?

It was of a huge statue standing aloft like the Eiffel Tower in Paris, or even the CN Tower in Toronto. Its head glistened in the sunshine because it was of gold; its chest and arms were of silver; its belly and thighs of brass (bronze); its legs of iron; its feet partly iron and partly clay (2:32&33).

The great image that was central to Nebuchadnezzar’s dream is really a fascinating picture of world history.

1. Each metal in that image represented A DIFFERENT KINGDOM (Daniel 2:32&33). As far as Nebuchadnezzar’s day was concerned:

There is no kingdom this image does not represent. It stands for every world dominion that man builds - every human empire and system - every power structure of man - all the great hegemonies of the ages. They are always the same. Men erect them. Men prop them up. But man's statues crumble and fall.

2. Notice how THE MATERIALS in this image

Is man getting better and better as time goes on? No - human civilisation is actually becoming cheaper and coarser.

Is human civilisation as strong and enduring as many people seem to think, some even imagining that man will discover the secret of immortality himself? No again - it rests on brittle feet of clay!

How will this world end?

Finally, a great Stone will suddenly appear and smite the nations of the world, shattering them to smithereens (2:34&45).

That rock represents Christ the Messiah - and its expansion, as it becomes “a great mountain, and fills the whole earth” (2:35), is the growth of the Messianic Kingdom - a world-wide kingdom of power and glory, which cannot be destroyed and will last forever (Daniel 2:44; cf. Matthew 21:42-44).

Our Lord is ... not only: a God of impossibilities, a God of information. He is also a God of infiniteness

The kingdom of our God and of His Son is overwhelming. It is so easy to get caught up in things that are here today but gone tomorrow, but it is only when we fix our hearts and minds on the things of God that we find true stability (Matthew 6:33). God’s kingdom will never end.

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