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Belshazzar Gave a Party

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice
The Truth Network Radio
July 14, 2020 8:00 am

Belshazzar Gave a Party

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice

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July 14, 2020 8:00 am

Taken captive and marched off to another country, Daniel and his friends have some amazing adventures in Babylonia. But through it all, they are faithful to God. As you enter into their story, you'll learn more about: the sovereignty of God, and why we must be holy and Christian living in a secular culture. In the latter half of this book, Daniel's own visions are recorded, and--in them--we catch glimpses of the future. How are these visions relevant to our lives?

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Welcome to the Bible studio reviewing punitive ministry of the alliance of convincing evangelicals featuring the Bible teaching of Dr. James boards. For more information please contact us by calling toll-free one 804 88 18 and now the alliance is pleased to present the Bible study our bearing you to think and act biblically all Sizer gave a party and invited all his friends.

It's not often that I remember a sentence of a sermon I have heard exactly word for word.

That is the case, and that quotation about 30 years ago. Billy Graham preached a sermon on the fifth chapter of Daniel, and he began it in that way, Eliphaz or gave a party what a party it was. I been the number of very exciting parties. This would have 1000 nobles all the lives all the concubines, all of the lavish splendor that the great city of Babylon could provide wine flowed freely and laughter filled the great banquet all suddenly Mitch Wallace, reveling a hand appeared and began to write up on the wall of the palace. Darius and his nobles believed in evil omens as part of the religious practices of the day to decipher evil omens in this. As I looked at it was one of the most ominous omens that they had ever seen were so frightened. It says that the king's face turned pale and his knees locked together in his legs gave way may did what they did situation like that they send for the transversely astrologers, diviners, and they said now tell us what those letters sign and what those words mean all the astrologers and diviners were baffled until I remembered Daniel Daniel.

By the time of this story was much older than he has been in the earlier chapters of the book that bears his name and maybe he had been somewhat forgotten. During the intervening years, but someone remembered Emily Queen remembered him and she said there's a man here knows how to interpret things like this. Call Daniel, so they didn't.

Daniel came in and Daniel read the word sentence gave the interpretation, the word swear words of judgment and Daniel began his interpretation in this way, all king most high God gave your father, Nebuchadnezzar's sovereignty and greatness and glory and splendor because of the high position. He gave him all the peoples and nations and men of every language, dreaded and feared him as the king wanted to put to death be put to death those he wanted to spare. He spared those he wanted to promote he promoted those he wanted a humble, he humbled when his heart became arrogance hardened with pride he was deposed from his royal throne and stripped of his glory. He was driven away from people and given the mind of an animal. He lived with a wild donkey's and ate grass like cattle and his body was drenched with the dew of heaven until he acknowledged the most high God is sovereign over the kingdoms of man. In such over them. Anyone he wishes that you his son all well Shatzer have not humbled yourself, even though you knew all this and Daniel read the words meaning may need take whole farce and interpreted them many, that means God has numbered the days of your rain and brought it to an end table. That means you've been weighing on the scales and found wanting. Parents that means your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and the Persians, so it was Shatzer rewarded Daniel for his interpretation but it didn't mean a thing because that might Darius the Mead over that very moment was camped outside walls of the city entered 10 city fell, and go Shatzer great of the Babylonians was slain. I want to talk about the judgment of God on go Shatzer.

But before I do I want to talk just a bit about Bill Shatzer himself.

That is because there has been a great deal of academic debate over this man's name problem stems from the fact that the chief source of our knowledge about ancient Babylon is the Greek historian Bruce ES who is quoted by Flavius Josephus in his antiquities. We don't have Bruce ES's writings, but we have them reflected in Josephus, and according to Joe, CVS, quotation of OCS we know all the kings of Babylon who range from Nebuchadnezzar onward and well Shatzer is not among them were three banks that followed Nebuchadnezzar Nebuchadnezzar course. Having been the most famous rating for the greatest period of time last of these three kings was not benign. This and has risen even mention so the liberal scholars have attacked act, as they often do when there's a difficulty in Scripture.

They picked up on the theory of a Phoenician writer named porphyry writing in the third century who in his judgment said that Daniel was actually written only about 165 BC that is long after the events that it purports to record taken place and that it has very little if any genuine historical value.

One German commentator Ferdinand Singh who wrote a commentary in 1850 included and I quote that Bill Sasser was clearly a figment of the writers imagination. While it often happens that theories like that eventually succumb to the discovery of new facts and that is what is happened here in the case of this name Bill Shatzer in 1854. That is four years after his Sigma German declared that Bill Shatzer was a figment of the writers imagination. Whoever the writer may be a British consul named JG Taylor was exploring some ruins in southern Iraq investigating the temple while he was doing his expiration. He discovered some cylinders upon which were carved about 60 lines of cuneiform writing each had a friend who was well able to read this kind of writing, and they deciphered it and they discovered what the cylinders where they had been prepared by the command of Amanita's last of the great kings of Babylon, and he was dedicating this temple in which these cylinders were discovered to the moon God and on the tablet there was a prayer for himself or his reign for long life and for that of his eldest son, Bill Shatzer. So the first time in history.

The name will Shatzer was documented by historical records and there was evidence that he had indeed been a very important person in Babel and in the last years of that city and Empire, but of course I still didn't entirely solve the problem because Deb and I just was the king. Will Shatzer was his son, but not the king, and yet in this chapter of Daniel Bill Sizer is described as the king. I was at to be explained well. Not long ago in the May June 1985 issue of biblical archaeology review was a survey of the kind of evidence that has been discovered in this matter and one thing that has been found in all those many years since the mid-1800s.

Since that there are references legal references in which a particular thing is established on the authority of the king of Babylon, Amanita send his son Bill Shatzer appointive. This particular article in the Journal is that that was entirely unusual at the time the document would be established on the authority of the king, but never by reference to a son or a successor and yet here, in the case of NABA night is the son Bill Shatzer is mentioned again and again. That alone suggests that Bill Sasser had a position of unusual important. Moreover, as these investigations have gone on has been discovered that NABA night as was most eccentric king kings before him, including Nebuchadnezzar always stayed in Babel and made that their capital except when they were often military campaigns that was untrue.

NABA night is NABA night is worship the moon God that was worship that are inherent so he was often in those cities said there was a long period of his life when he lived at an oasis site far out in the desert and wasn't in Babel in the wall during his absence son will Shatzer range as acting King in the capital. As a matter of fact there is even an inscription that says that NABA night is quote entrusted the kingship to Bill Shatzer.

Apparently what happened is this Herodotus writes about it when Darius approached Babylon NABA and I just went out to engage him militarily. I would night's was defeated, he fled one of his strongholds and there was bottled up by some of Darius's troops. Darius then moved to encircle Babylon and so at the time a babblings fall.

It was Bill Shatzer acting King not in fact the king who was there and was overthrown is interestingly enough, a reflection of fat in this fifth chapter of Daniel.

The 16th verse of this great chapter when Bill Shatzer is talking to Daniel and asking him to interpret the handwriting that had appeared upon the wall says that if he's able to interpret it. He will make him the third-highest ruler in the kingdom and the question immediately rises well why the third-highest. Recall that when Joseph did a similar thing for Pharaoh, as recorded in the 40th chapter of Genesis, Pharaoh promise to make Joseph, the second highest in the kingdom. Yet here it says the third mystery is explained if we can, supposedly short letter this time NABA night S was still living he was the king Bill Shatzer, though he was raining is getting in Babel and was actually second and therefore the highest position that Bill Shatzer could offer Daniel was third sleep I've said again and again and it bears repeating that if you want to look wise in the world. Size and you're not afraid of being thought foolish, 10, 20 or 30 years from now you can make a reputation for yourself criticizing the Bible always things in the Bible for which we don't have all the facts and there are always things we don't fully understand things are confusing to us. So if you make a career or pastime of searching those things out.

You're always going to find things that you can point to incite. Well, here's an error is another error is an error. How could a person possibly believe in the Bible is a special revelation from God always hears about the problem you see is that as time goes by those so-called errors tend to be explained and the critical theories tend to blow up in the faces of those who propound them as time goes by. Bible is proved to be more reliable, rather than less, and those who take their stand upon its full authority and inerrancy are vindicated. Let's talk about this judgment, the number of lessons in the judgment on Bill Shatzer and we don't want to miss that. I'd like to talk about those lessons specifically and then brought somewhat to consider God's judgments upon all people at all times. It's the first lesson the first lesson is one we've seen already in the book, namely that sin is not static I mean by that that the pathos in his downhill. Just sin and then hold on a level course. You start off on that path. That path goes down and the sins repeat and get worse and the ends is disaster, we see that here simply by comparing Nebuchadnezzar with Bill Shatzer, Nebuchadnezzar was arrogant enough in the previous chapter when Nebuchadnezzar looked out on Babel and he took to himself the glory that you have been given to God and he said, is not this the great Babel and I have built is the royal residence by my mighty power and for the glory of my Majesty was a sin. God wouldn't tolerate taking God's glory and applying it to himself.

It was what we today call secular humanism putting man at the center of all things and abolishing references to the Almighty altogether.

God said I'm going to bring Nebuchadnezzar down so God brought them down by confusing his mind as spirit of insanity.

Phlebotomy live like an animal for seven years until the end of that time is reason return.

We understand that to me not only his intellect but his spiritual reason, he began to see things right and he was brought back again to a position of power which he finally acknowledged the most high God that was Nebuchadnezzar said now have Bill Shatzer and Bill Shatzer sin is worse. Nebuchadnezzar the glory of God to himself and lost his reason Sasser defined God blaspheming him by the use of the desecration of the vessels of the been used in the Temple of Jerusalem, drinking from the vessels and praising that gods and goddesses of Babel and God made of gold and silver environment. Bronze and God judged him, not by the mere loss of his recent know what he was doing was an insane thing to do by the loss of his kingdom and his life see how it operates story of Gomer ran away from Hosea to live with other men. Story of Jonah ran away from God to go to Tarshish. It's a story that is spelled out for us the great first chapter of Romans Romans tells us that although men have the knowledge of God and counts the knowledge of God something to be retained, but they rejected it. So having rejected the knowledge of the true God. They made themselves images like Mandan animals and creeping things and worship them and as a result, God gave them up God gave them up God gave them up.

It repeats the phrase three times. You see, that is exactly what Daniel told Bill Shatzer he said the bill Sasser but you know his son have not humbled yourself, even though you know these things, we run away from God is not a question of our ignorance. We know those things. It's that we don't want to fall where that knowledge leads so we turn away from God and the path is downhill it is not static. Second thing I want to point out is that sin makes us impervious to danger. This was obviously the case with no Shatzer Darius the Mead was encamped outside the walls.

This very night, Darius was damming up the river so the level of the water would drop exposing the holes through the walls by which water course through the city. When the openings were exposed. Darius and soldiers entered the city in that way. That very night Babel and found that while that was going on. Shatzer, who should at least as a king have been alert to the danger in charge of the situation was stupefying himself at this final fling Karl Marx said you know religion is the opiate of the people he meant by that.

That religion puts us to sleep so those who oppress us have less trouble maintaining their supremacy, but call Marx got it absolutely backwards it sin that puts us to sleep.

True religion, wakes us up, wakes us up to our condition and the grace and glory of God so that we might turn from sin and the disaster that follows in its wake and find salvation and life in Jesus Christ's this bill Sasser failed to do. You know I need to say it's not only will Shatzer those hazards.

Babel, in which, because of their sin were impervious to the danger that surrounded them. It is our culture as well long ago man named Neil postman published a book called amusing ourselves to death may have seen it.

It's about television just talks about the way we have substituted entertainment for everything that used to involve rational thought. We measure things like amusements point is that our culture is destroying itself in that way, but what he writes about television could very well be written about every other facet of our culture, especially in the spiritual dimension killing ourselves by our fascination with amusement, particularly at entertainment which is sin oriented tragedy.

You say is that when you start along that path, you numb yourself. Sin is an opiate and you stupefying yourself to the dangerous Bill Shatzer did my third point is that not only is sin, not static. God is not static either. We think of God as the grates on moved in on moving mover does nothing except sit up in the sky watch what's happening. Or perhaps he doesn't even pay attention. We think that because of God's patience. God doesn't. In this like judge every little sin immediately. God lets a lot of things go by is a final judgment, but we don't see it always here so we say wow God doesn't notice we say God doesn't care what you say. I couldn't get away with that I can keep on going along that path. Nothing's going to happen to me, all while the wrath of God, which is always turned against sin is piling up accumulating like water behind great dam.

Those moments come in history again and again. Suddenly a damn script to sign the wrath of God pours out on nations and upon individuals. See these things are given to us for warning. The Bible says that these judgments in history are to alert us that great judgment which is to, I think of the way the Lord Jesus Christ talks about it that great sermon he gave from the Mount of olives. Shortly before his crucifixion he speaking of the last days, days, much like ours, he says, as it was in the days of Noah. Another great period of judgment so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.

In the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, I think he is not against marriage is talking about partying and reveling up to the day Noah entered the ark, and they knew nothing about what would happen with the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be the coming of the Son of Man. Two men will be in the field. One will be taken and the other left.

Two women will be grinding with a hand mill one will be taken and the other left.

Therefore keep watch because you do not know on what day your Lord will come as the wisdom of our Lord in this matter. The judgment and it's that we might be alert that these prior judgments are recorded brings me to the matter of the final judgment where I want to broaden this much as possible. I want to begin by saying that this is not just something I do. This is a parallel that the Bible itself makes those of you who are familiar with the book of Revelation know that in the seven teeth, 18th and 19th chapters of that book. There is a description of God's final judgment upon evil represented pictorially in terms of the fall of what the chapters called mystery Babylon 17 chapter describes the fall fall and fallen is Babylon the great 18th chapter records the laments of those who have seen Babel and fallen kings of the earth say whoa whoa to that great city merchants who have grown rich upon their trade with Babel and cry whoa whoa to that great city and the sea captains who have prospered by the commerce cry out, whoa, whoa, that great city. It's a picture of honor, gloom and despair in his next chapter, chapter 19, and the scene switches to heaven that the subject is the same sinks are there saints are reflecting on the fall of Babel and that they are not saying hello hello hello to that great city, fallen is Babylon the great they are.

Say hallelujah to God. Sin has been judge, the Lord God, the put agreement see God indicates in that way, how he regards the judgment you and I tend to sentimental lies, sin. We want to take it lightly. And the reason is obvious is because we are sinners, we want to taken lightly in our own lives. God says to us. Not only is sin judged is good. Sin is judged and the Saints in heaven. Rejoice in the judgment of the point I want to make is that the day is coming when you and I are going to face the judgment of God is the King, we are his subjects.

We are going to stand before this great God against his authority. We have rebelled were going to have to answer for our deeds and God is going to pronounce the judgment and he is going to write upon, save for the work of Jesus Christ. Those words that he wrote up on the wall of ancient Babel in Maine eight remaining take all Farson because it describes numbering of our sin's are weighing the balance of the division which is the judgment itself. So you're going to stand there and the books are going to be open the book of Revelation talks about those books in which all your deeds all your good deeds as you regard goodness in all your evil deeds are recorded.

There's going to be in numbering of those deeds may name meaning numbering numbering number God's going to take all those deeds and he's going to place them on the scale of his justice is going to weigh them. That's what Cagle means all of those things that you.are going to scream out against you judgment and is your sins. All of the things you have done all of the things you will failed to do all of your hypocrisies all of your self-serving all the harm which you brought others as those speeds are piled up upon that scale. 1.1.1, that scale is going to go crashing down on the side of your condemnation. Nothing to be done by you. God is going to say paradise. The division way life the way to death, which is eternal damnation as Jesus himself described as nothing that you and I can do but God has done something God sent Jesus Christ to die, place of his people.

That is to bear the punishment for their sins, and then on the basis of that to make available DOS's righteousness. So unlike the righteousness we think we have which is no righteousness at all, but a perfect gentle loving pure satisfying utterly adequate righteousness, see if you've trusted in Christ.

Those scales are brought forward in your deeds so piled up those penis deeds that make you ashamed in your own eyes and make you tremble before the holiness of God. Those deeds are going to be brushed aside as having been dealt with the sacrifice of Christ and on the other side of the scales.

God is going to place his own character. Righteousness of Jesus Christ to your account and the scales will swing you be justified on the basis of what you have done, but on the basis of what Jesus did at the message of this judgment, we read may name any take all Farson we say well yes, maybe not applied rightly to Bill Sasser lesson that is God's judgments on the human race. That's God's judgment upon you. The only escape from the condemnation is through Christ that Christ is offered to you that Christ is presented in the gospel that is salvation. That is what this church age is all about those who know this, by the grace of God, tell others about it. One beggar showing another beggar where to find bread called was that you carried by the force of God's own Holy Spirit say yes these things are true. If you were to be measured in this hour before the bar of God's justice, you would be condemned, but you can find justification through Christ. What you need to do is turn from sin and embrace him as your Savior and your Lord and say thank you God thank you thank you for providing such a great salvation for person like me.

Her father, we thank you for these warnings difficult as they are for us to face because we know you give them out of a heart of love flowing with grace, we might turn from our sin find that salvation which only Jesus Christ brings all our father we ask if there are those listening in this moments who have never, never turn from their sin, who still think that somehow their good works will add up to an acceptable record in your site all God disabuse them of that idea. Show them how your judgment speaks let them know that there are indeed numbered way to and found wanting and that the pit lies before their feet by your grace, turn them around to Jesus.

They might find salvation in him before it's too late payment for you have been listening to the Bible study our production of the alliance of confessing Evangelicals the alliance of confessing Evangelicals exist to promote a biblical understanding and worldview. Drawing upon the insight and wisdom of Reformation theologians from decades, even centuries gone by. We seek to provide contemporary Christian teaching that will equip believers to understand and meet the challenges and opportunities of our time and place. The alliance ministry includes the Bible study our featuring Dr. James voice every last word with Bible teacher, Dr. Philip Rieke and Dr. Barnhouse in the Bible featuring Donald Gray Barnhouse. For more information on the alliance including a full list of radio stations carrying our programs or to make a contribution. Please contact us by calling toll-free 1-800-488-1888. Again, that's 1-800-488-1888. You can also write the alliance at Box 2000, Philadelphia, PA 19103 work, you can visit us online at ask for your free resource catalog featuring books, audio teachings, commentaries, booklets, videos, and a wealth of other materials from outstanding reformed teachers and theologians, including Donald Barnhouse, James voice and Philip Rieke. Thank you again for your continued support

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