STEPPING           Dan 2: 1 – 49

I’m often asked how to noseride and cross step on a longboard. The reality is it takes time and practice repeating small steps to move forward towards the nose. If you rush and take too big a step you unbalance the board and it tips it also just looks rushed and ungraceful.

Take small steps and keep going till you walk of the board. This way you are used to going over the edge so you can approach the tip comfortably otherwise the last 6 inches seems like 6 miles and you never quite get there.

Small steps of Obediance allow God to grow us as we yield and follow him. Daniel and his friends, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego have already made a stand against being assimilated into the Babylonian culture. They have resisted eating food sacrificed to idols Ch 1

One act of obedience is better than one hundred sermons. Dietrich Bonhoeffer

That one act of obedience grows their faith and they begin lives of obedience. This leads them into the providence of God and he opens doors for them via the interpretation of a dream.

Dan 2: 1 In the second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuchadnezzar had dreams; his spirit was troubled, and his sleep left him. 2 Then the king commanded that the magicians, the enchanters, the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans be summoned to tell the king his dreams. So they came in and stood before the king. 3 And the king said to them, I had a dream, and my spirit is troubled to know the dream….
10 The Chaldeans answered the king and said, There is not a man on earth who can meet the king’s demand, for no great and powerful king has asked such a thing of any magician or enchanter or Chaldean. 11 The thing that the king asks is difficult, and no one can show it to the king except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh.
12 Because of this the king was angry and very furious, and commanded that all the wise men of Babylon be destroyed. 13 So the decree went out, and the wise men were about to be killed; and they sought Daniel and his companions, to kill them….
16 And Daniel went in and requested the king to appoint him a time, that he might show the interpretation to the king. 17 Then Daniel went to his house and made the matter known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions, 18 and told them to seek mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery, so that Daniel and his companions might not be destroyed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. 19 Then the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision of the night. Then Daniel blessed the God of heaven.

Smalls steps of obedience with food and wine lead to larger steps of obedience revealing dreams and saving lives. Daniel seeks God in prayer along with his companions and God answers.

Daniel becomes the highest authority in the land answerable only to the king. He reigns in this position for 70yrs as kings come and go and empires rise and fall. In chapter 2 it is notable that the persecution comes as the king exerts his will and fury over the inability of his Gods agents. Daniels first reaction is one of faith 2:14 he asks for time confident God will answer. He gathers his friends and they begin to pray. vs 17. A greater step of Obedience.

Dan 2: 46 Then King Nebuchadnezzar fell upon his face and paid homage to Daniel, and commanded that an offering and incense be offered up to him. 47 The king answered and said to Daniel, Truly, your God is God of gods and Lord of kings, and a revealer of mysteries, for you have been able to reveal this mystery. 48 Then the king gave Daniel high honours and many great gifts, and made him ruler over the whole province of Babylon and chief prefect over all the wise men of Babylon.

God answers and unfolds in front of Daniel and Nebuchadnezzer the next 500 yrs of history Babylon then Medes & Persians followed by Alexander the great and then Greece divided. Antipodes of Greece followed by Rome and Jesus with the kingdom of God, that lasts forever. Later in Daniels life this dream is revisited in greater detail and speaks of both this period of history and of the end times.

Much is made about Daniel being prominent in the land by many believers, believing that positions of power should follow faithful Christians; however this response is wrongly sought and poorly thought through. Nebuchanesser has the appropriate response.. 47b Truly, your God is God of gods and Lord of kings,the authority and rule is his to give and to take away. It is his glory we should seek not the glory of the servant who brings Gods answer to the dream.

The equation here is simple God is seeking obedience. He delights in it relishing the small steps and giving opportunity and faith for the larger ones. Are you stepping for ward or are you stuck standing still?

* God should be our portion for faithfulness not goods and prominence. move in obedience don’t be stuck in obstinance.
* Are you willing to take small steps of obedience or are you always chasing the prominent big steps leading to your glory not His?

Lord sanctify us. Oh! That Thy spirit might come and saturate every faculty, subdue every passion, and use every power of our nature for obedience to God. Charles Spurgeon

I think that is a better thing than thanksgiving: thanks-living. How is this to be done? By a general cheerfulness of manner, by an obedience to the command of Him by whose mercy we live, by a perpetual, constant delighting of ourselves in the Lord, and by a submission of our desires to His will. — Charles Spurgeon

“What God says is best, is best, though all the men in the world are against it.”     ― John Bunyan, The Pilgrims Progress

“Faith never knows where it is being led, but it loves and knows the One who is leading.”   – Oswald Chambers

One act of obedience is better than one hundred sermons.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer