All right. Well, hey, let's dive in. We're going to be in Daniel Chapter 2 today. And as you guys are finding Daniel Chapter 2, let me just go ahead and say this as these guys are exiting the stage here and all that. Man, I do want us to see, guys, every one of us in our church, every single person at Mercy Hill, we want you to see this picture because, you know, we're 165 into a vision of 500. Why not you? I mean, would God be calling you maybe to put your yes on the table like this?
Here's the cool thing about them. You don't make that big giant leap toward yes without a bunch of smaller yeses along the way. And so are we saying yes in generosity? Are we saying yes in serving?
Are we saying yes in moving service times or whatever the church is asking and the Lord is asking? And then eventually it leads us maybe even to this place where we're counted among the missionaries that are sent out from this church. And we have a 10-year vision to see 500.
Guys, what that means is there's kids that are eight or nine years old right now that will be part of that number. And I'm praying for that even in my own household. So let's just continue to lift them up. And man, what an exciting day.
All right. Daniel Chapter 2 is where we're going to be at today. And we're going to be diving in to the story really part B from last week, okay? So if you were here last week, God revealed the dream to Daniel, but I did not reveal the dream to you, okay? So we did major cliffhanger last week and we're going to try to wrap some of that up today.
All right, so if you have a copy of scripture, we're going to last part of Daniel Chapter 2. But here's what we're going to see. We're going to see what the dream was, what the dream means, and how it fortifies the believer, I believe, okay?
Here's the big idea that I want you to see this weekend. God fortifies our perseverance by showing us His future victory. Now what are we supposed to see in a dream to a king 2,600 years ago? What are we supposed to see from this? I think what we're supposed to see is very much in line with other apocalyptic literature where the Bible is trying to get the church and God is trying to give us good gifts in the scripture to get the church to understand that knowing the end helps us live in the now. What we believe about there helps us live here, right? And that's what we're going to get into today. When we understand that there is great victory coming on behalf of the kingdom of God, then it helps fortify our faith even in a world that feels so chaotic and all that.
It can even be calm to us in the chaos. You know, one of the examples I've used for this before is I love...so I'm from North Florida, okay? And I don't watch a ton of TV and stuff like that. I don't even watch a ton of sports. But man, I'll watch the Florida Gators play football, okay? And I'll watch the Jacksonville Jaguars play football. And I'll watch, you know, really the Florida teams.
I don't know. I'm a Florida boy and I love... So that's one thing that I'm kind of like, man, I'm going to make sure I'm either home or if I don't, then I get to tape it on the sling thing, okay? And so, you know, we'll tape it on there.
And this...guys, you're with me on this, okay? Every time I try to tape a game, somebody will text me during the game, all right? Or, you know, and I'll find out what the score is. I'm trying all day to avoid it. And then right at the last...right, you've been there. Or, you know, because our phones are constantly listening to us, not that I'm paranoid about that or anything, you know, all of a sudden a newsfeed thing will pop up that happens to be for this game, you know?
And you'll be able to...so anyway, you know what I'm talking about. The scores get ruined. You know the end from the beginning.
I'm going to tell you, when that happens to me, I kind of kick the ground. But if they've won the game, then I'm really happy, right? And I love watching the game that I didn't see when I know that they won. It's so much fun because it doesn't matter what happens in the game. They can be twists and turns. They can fumble with, you know, one minute left in the game and all is lost, but I already know they won. And so, therefore, my heartbeat doesn't begin to go up.
My blood pressure don't go up, right? Because I already know the end. It's very similar in the life of a believer that if we can understand the end, suddenly the twists and turns in life won't wreck us so much like they do.
It won't be so nerve-wracking to live here. And that's a little bit of what God gives us when we get a chance to look at prophecy. I mean, we're going to see some stuff today that is just straight up prophetic, where Daniel is saying, hey, this you had a dream.
This is what it means. It's in the future, all of that. Why does God give us glimpses in the way that He does in His scripture? He gives us these things to fortify us.
We've been talking about this in this series. Man, some of us feel like the world is out of control. Some of us might find yourself looking up at heaven saying, God, what are you doing? This series, right, is for anybody who's ever thought the world is going to hell in a hand basket. If you've ever had that thought, one of the things that's a tool in the tool belt of the believer that God gives us is remember God's victory in the end. Somebody needs to hear this today. Guys, this world ain't always going to be the way it is right now.
It will not always stand in the way that it does. That one day, a stone will come and grow into a giant mountain that takes over the whole world. And this is the kingdom of God, and this is what we see. Look at verse 26 with me. Let's just walk through this text. The king declared to Daniel, whose name is Belteshazzar, and I want to talk about that in just a minute.
Why the two names? Are you able to make known to me the dream that I have seen and its interpretation that Daniel answered the king and said, no wise men, enchanters, magicians, or astrologers can show to the king the mystery that the king has asked, that we read this last week, but there is a God in heaven who reveals mysteries, and he has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what will be in the latter days. Now, we talked about this last week, right? This is kind of the setup. This is, Daniel knows the dream. I'm going to share the dream with you. But before we get into that, I just want to make one point that I've touched on a couple of times. I want to go a little bit deeper on. Not the point of the whole text.
This is a little bit of a drive-by, okay? But I think it's important. Look at verse 26 again. The king declared to Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar. One of the things that we have to understand that we learn from the book of Daniel is a simple point here, and that is that Daniel had to learn to live with two names. That doesn't mean that he learned to live two-faced.
It's a very different idea, okay? It's not two-faced, but he is living clearly with two names. When he is talking as the one that has come that God has put here for a particular reason when he's striving for the mission, this is kind of indicative of the kingdom of God. He represents that in his name, Daniel. He also represents a brother who was dropped onto Mars, who was trained in the occult, who was, you know, given a new name.
Horrible things done. Living under oppression, slavery, violence, and he had to figure out how to thrive for the mission in that environment. And that dude's name is Belteshazzar. I mean, his name literally went from God is my judge to Belle is my God.
I mean, the God who is not God is my God. And he had to figure out how it is that you thrive in an environment like that. Now many of us, here's the deal. This is what I want to say. Many of us don't understand what it means to live as exiles. We are exiles here, just like Daniel was there.
First Peter tells us this so clearly. I mean, we are exiles here. Exiles got to figure out how to live with two names, not two faces. But we figure out how to live with two names. Now there's always, you know, there's a bit of an attempt sometimes to live with only one name, and it'd be kind of like this. Well, I'm never going to be anything but Daniel, Belteshazzar.
I could never let my name be that. Even if I have to isolate myself from the world and be of no earthly good in terms of God's mission, but I'm going to stay clean, you know, from the world. Of course, the other side is that we would look around and we'd be in Babylon and we would just say, well, man, they named me Belteshazzar, so that's who I am.
Let's get the party going. I'm just going to live in Babylon, right? Like I'm not, there's no thought to God's kingdom and what He wants me to do, so I'm just going to live over here all the way into sin.
It's isolation or it's assimilation. Y'all, Daniel lived a transformation, transformational life in Babylon. And a transformational life means I'm not isolated to the point where I can't have impact, nor am I ever assimilated to the point of sin.
Okay, that's important. I'm not assimilated to the point of sin. But in the gray and in the wisdom areas of life, the person who is living with two names decides I'm not going all the way to the point of sin, that's never right, right?
But I'm not going to isolate myself so much that I can't be impactful here. What did it look like in Daniel's life? Well, it sort of looked like this, change my name, teach me sorcery all day long. That's fine. I'm still not eating that. That's living in the gray. That's living a transformational life. I'm not isolating. I'm not assimilating. I'm living a transformation life.
I'll give you another example from Daniel's life, even though we need the end of the story to kind of understand this. Ask me to use my giftings to help a pagan kingdom. Okay, God's put me here.
We're going to see in Jeremiah 29, seek the peace of that place. Got it. I'm going to use my gifts here. Okay, that's fine.
Tell me I have to worship Him as God. We're going to do it. See, it's not isolation or assimilation. It's a transformational life. Now many of us, I think, and we can be all over the place on this. I understand that. But many of us who are at a church like Mercy Hill, man, we're trying to raise kids. A lot of us maybe even struggle with the isolation side a little more. We're like, man, I'm trying to kind of cocoon up and get my little crew away from the world because I want them to be unstained. And listen, I don't think that's, I think it's a natural impulse for us.
But just because it's natural, I mean, it's right. Like we've got to learn to fight against that. And this group of people of which Daniel was a part of had to figure that out. Guys, in Jeremiah chapter 29, we see the prophet of God speaking on behalf of God to people that are in exactly the situation that Daniel was in. You know what God said to them?
Look what He said. Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, to all the exiles whom I have sent into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon. Now that literally happened, but guys, we're starting talking about exiles. We're talking about us too, okay? We're exiles in this world.
Now here's what He says. Build houses and live in them. Plant gardens and eat their produce. Take wives and have sons and daughters. Take wives for your sons and give your daughters to marriage and that they may bear sons and daughters.
Multiply, this is important, multiply there and do not decrease. Now, if you assimilate, you decrease because there is no distinctiveness. What He's saying is, you've got to figure out how not to isolate outside of the city, which was probably what was going on here in Jeremiah. There was people that were advocating for that. But you've also got to figure out how not to go in the city and lose yourself. You've got to figure out how to, verse 7, seek the welfare, seek the peace of the city where I have sent you into exile and pray to the Lord on its behalf for in its welfare you will find welfare also. I think you're getting the point.
I don't need to belabor it, but let me put some flesh on it, all right? Pretty straightforward. Here's the types of things that I'm talking about. Where do you send your kids to school? Do you send them to school? What school?
Public school, home school, whatever. These are the types of questions. An isolation person wants a rule. There's got to be a rule that way. There's no, what's the rule so that I can stay far, far away and I'll, the assimilation person doesn't even ask the question of what might be better for them, what might be better for the mission. Well we're called to be transformation type people. Here's some more examples. Exactly how far do you go in relationship building with your co-workers who seem to only want to do that over drinks?
Late in the evening. It's like, man, I'm trying to build relationships. I'm trying to be missional.
Wait a minute, is that a good environment for me? I'm not saying yes, I'm not saying no. What I'm saying is these are the types of questions that a transformation person is asking. High schooler, do you go to prom these days? College student, are you okay with being at the party but not participating in the party and where is that line? How many of you have been asked to go to a wedding that maybe you don't agree with the lifestyle that's there or maybe there's a, you know, there's an unequal yoking kind of going on and you're like, wait a minute, do I go, do I not go? These are the types of questions that we need the Spirit of God and wisdom to be able to answer and I know this goes against everything we want to think about truth but this is the truth.
When there's not a black and white and it is gray, sometimes we've got to think about motivation, what is the Spirit actually saying to you? It could vary from person to person of what's right in these types of situations. I'll tell you one right now I'm wrestling with, okay? All right, it's rated R, my son's 11 but it's about time for him to watch Braveheart, okay? I don't know. I mean, maybe it's not right now, maybe it's in a few years, you understand.
It's probably going to happen before he's 17. You know, it's like, okay, you know, there's a, my point is, there's a belt of Chazzart Daniel, are we learning how to live with two names for the sake of the mission? I think about, y'all, I think about this and we've got to be wise, we've got to pray, we've got to think, we've got to use prudence and discretion.
You know, we had a college student one time at the High Point University that decided to pledge for a, rush for a sorority, okay, in order that she could begin to do ministry and create Bible studies within Greek life. Now, when I say that, I bet you, I could feel it in here. I bet it was the same with the camp. About half of the camp, half of us were like, wow, that's missional. Other half was like, very bad idea, right?
I mean, it's kind of split. Well, you've got to, you know, what are we doing? We're trying to live Daniel Beltachazzar, life in two names, transformational life. Now, listen, this is my point.
There are still Bible studies to this day, years later, that came from her work there. We want to, amen, we want to be excited, right? Do you know that the next year there were some other girls that tried to do the same thing?
Within about three weeks they were blacked out in the party scene. My point is this, can you say right or wrong? Sometimes it's not that easy, is it? Sometimes it's maturity, it's the Spirit, it's wisdom, it's community.
What are people around you saying? That's what it takes to live a life with two names. Not two faces, but to live a life with two names. Now, I want to get, I don't want to, I can't spend any more time there. We've got to get into the heart of it today, which is this dream, right?
Now, here's the dream. Verse 31. You saw, O king and behold, a great image, the image mighty and exceeding brightness stood before you and its appearance was frightening. The head of its image was fine gold, its chest and arms of silver, its middle and thighs of bronze, its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of clay. And as you looked, a stone was cut out by no human hand, a divine stone, if you want to say it like that.
How does something get cut out without a human cutting it? And it struck the image on its feet of iron and clay and it broke them in pieces. Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver and the gold all together were broken in pieces, became like the chaff of the summer threshing floors and the wind carried them away so that not a trace of them could be found. But the stone that struck the image became great, became a great mountain and filled the whole earth. Now, verse 36.
This was the dream. Now, we will tell the king its interpretation. You, O king, king of kings, to whom the God of heaven has given the kingdom the power, the might and the glory and into whose hand he has given, wherever they dwell, the children of man, the beasts of the field, the birds of the heavens, making you rule over all of them, you are the head of gold.
Got it. Another kingdom inferior to you shall arise after you. See, we're moving from gold to silver, okay? And then it says this.
And yet a third kingdom of bronze which shall rule over the earth. Here's the point, okay? This is what he's getting into here.
Let me just kind of go ahead and throw this out. This is getting into prophecy that has been fulfilled. Now, this was written hundreds of years before it was fulfilled, but it's very interesting, right? Listen, at our campuses, six different locations now, 14 different services across the triad, and I bet you in every one of them, I bet you here right now, there are people who are genuine enough and honest enough to be here because they're searching. They're trying to figure out if there's truth. They're trying to figure out if the Bible is truth. They're trying to figure all that out. But you're not totally sure yet.
We're glad you're here. Let me say one thing about this. Man, sometimes there is a great opportunity for you to learn and to lean in when you start thinking about biblical prophecy.
Biblical prophecy especially that has been fulfilled because this is what we see here. Now, what does he say? Nebuchadnezzar, you are the head of gold, okay?
You're in the prime kingdom. You know, you guys have heard. You all went to seventh grade world civil, you know, history or whatever, right? It's like hanging gardens of Babylon.
You've heard of that. Seven wonders of the world. I mean, you know, rich, bridge over the Euphrates. I mean, all of this stuff, okay?
And so, yes, you are the gold head. But there will be a slide that comes after this kingdom. And it always goes like this, y'all. We want things to go well in earthly kingdoms, but they sort of always go gold, silver, bronze, iron, clay, done. I mean, that's kind of how it works. And that's what happens here.
It's going gold to silver, all right, and then it's going into the bronze. Now, what is he talking about here? Well, actually, it's really interesting that somebody 600 years before the birth of Christ would be able to forecast what was going to happen in really in world history, okay? It's not even just, I mean, it is this area of the world, but I mean, you think about, you know, kind of our history books and all of that.
And I mean, for lack of a better term, like, he nailed it, okay? You have the Babylonian empire that was there, the gold. Well, that falls to another kingdom, the Medo-Persian empire. And that Persian empire reigns until about 331, so 539 to about 331. Actually, when this, in our study, we're going to see this empire fall, okay?
So that 539 mark, we're going to see that in Daniel's life. But then the Medo-Persian empire, you know, 331 BC. If you're trying to get your mind around what time frame that is, think about the Battle of the Spartans and the 300, okay, and the Battle of Thermopylae. That happened during all that time where they were trying to start to take over Greece and all that, okay? Now, that's kingdom number two. Kingdom number three comes about later when you end up 331 to 63 BC when you have who? This is Alexander the Great. This is the Greeks, okay? They reign for another couple hundred years. Well then, what's happening around 63 BC? Who's rising up then?
Well, yes, exactly. Rome is starting to come onto the scene, right? And so now you have the fourth empire, and that's what he talks about in verse 40. And there shall be a fourth kingdom, strong as iron, because iron breaks to pieces and shatters all things, and Rome certainly did.
Like iron that crushes, it shall break and crush all these, as you saw the feet and toes partly of potter's clay and partly of iron. It shall be a divided kingdom. Now, what is it? I know we're not doing a history class, okay? But if you have some knowledge of it, I mean, what is the one thing we all know about Rome? Division.
What is it? I mean, all these peoples together that could not come together, right? And that's kind of what it's talking about here. Some of the firmness of iron shall be in it, just as you saw iron mixed with soft clay. And as the toes of the feet were partly iron and partly clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly brittle.
As you saw the iron mixed with soft clay, so they will mix with one another in marriage, but they will not hold together, just as iron does not mix with clay. Fourth kingdom, Octavian defeats Mark Antony, Cleopatra. I don't need to keep doing a history lesson, okay?
The point is, you understand how interesting this is. That 600 years, this young man in Babylon interprets a dream and he's like, hey man, this is kind of what it means. You're going to fall, then they're going to come and fall, then they're going to come and fall, then they're going to come and fall. Thousand years of world history and he just plops it right down at their feet. Now, the point of this, and we're going to get into this in just a second is, I didn't read it all the way yet, is that the whole point is, they're all going to fall, but there's another kingdom that's going to come.
Okay, we're going to talk about that. But before we do, I've got to say this just by way of application for us today. You cannot read this without understanding that every earthly kingdom has a phase to it called after this.
You understand? Every earthly kingdom has a phase to it that is labeled as after this. And we get a chance to live in the best neighborhood in Babylon. You know, I talked about that.
It's awesome. We get the best neighborhood in Babylon, but here's the problem. When you're living in the best neighborhood in Babylon, it's hard through all the power and prosperity to realize if Jesus tarries, there will be an after this. Will the church stand? Brings up all these other questions that we could talk about. Here's the main question that I have for us today.
Y'all, if we understand that, we should be looking for a kingdom that won't fail rather than putting all of our hope and all of our trust and all of our security in one that inevitably will. Now, what does that mean for our nation? I'm going to tell you exactly what it means for our nation.
Do what I do. Man, we need to pray for our nation. We need to be the most active people when it comes to the political system and taking advantage of the fact that we get to live in a place with a republic democracy like we have, a democratic republic like we have. We need to take advantage of that.
I get all that. But at the same time, if we are a people who kind of like, we sort of are trusting the next political savior or the next policy that we love that gets written in, if we're trusting that for our security and for our ultimate wellness and well-being, then we are trusting in something that ultimately will have an after this after it. And we need to push farther and find that kingdom that never fails.
Man, we need to be a people. Listen, we got people in this church that are jumping into politics, that are jumping, that are moving into teaching in the classroom. They're firefighters.
They're police officers. We need to pray for them. We probably need to be commissioning them in the way that we commission a church planter.
Okay? We need to be all in with them because what? They are bringing signs of the next kingdom that is coming if they're doing it in Jesus' name. But it's not going to be that they are creating a savior because there's no earthly kingdom that can do that. We've got to look for the next kingdom to do that and that's what he gets into here.
Look at this. And in the days of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed. Nor shall the kingdom be left to another people. It shall break in pieces all these kingdoms and bring them to an end and it shall stand forever. Just as you saw that a stone was cut from a mountain by no human hand, that it broke in pieces the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver and the gold. A great God has made known to the king what shall be after this.
The dream is certain and its interpretation is pure. Here's the point, all right? And I want to start moving us to get really into the big idea of this thing about our faith being fortified. If we can catch a glimpse of the kingdom that will never fail, it will make us strong to live in a kingdom that will fail.
All right? Because any kingdom on earth, even when you get a chance to live in the best neighborhood in Babylon, all right? Here is a down escalator.
Here is failing. Like the world is in that mode. But we have an understanding that there is a kingdom coming that will never fail and if we can get some of that. God's kingdom is what?
I've taught you this before. God's people, God's place under God's powerful reign. That's what the kingdom of God is and this is what is coming.
And who is bringing it? The stone. Well, who happens to also be called the stone or the cornerstone in scripture, right? Jesus says this of himself.
Look at Mark 1.15. The time is fulfilled. Now this is right when Jesus' ministry is popping off, okay? Right when it starts, one of the first things he says, I am come, and here's what he says, the kingdom of God is at hand. Jesus has come to inaugurate something. Now, it's not its full, you know, it's not its full consummation yet. We are waiting for Jesus to come back again.
I understand that. The theologians call this the already but not yet from where we live. Jesus has come once, but he hasn't come again and we wait for that day. But the kingdom of God is inaugurated. The Spirit is alive and moving in the world. God is building his kingdom here through the hearts of his people. This is what Jesus has come to do. He was called the chief cornerstone, right? What does Psalm 118.22 say? He is the cornerstone, the stone that has been rejected. It is the rejection of this stone that gives him the right and the ability to build the church and to build the people of God. You know, you think about Jesus coming to earth as a little baby, living a human life, and then dying on a cross to save us from our sin. This is the gospel of Jesus Christ that through his rejection there is a way for us. And for the last 2,000 years people have been opting into that new humanity. They've been admitting their sin, believing that Jesus has done everything necessary to save them, and confessing him as the Lord of their life. I will live for you.
My life is in your hands. And for 2,000 years he has been building this people. And the kingdom of God is being seen in the hearts of God's people as they go out and they bring signs of the kingdom that is coming and one day will fully be here.
You know, it's interesting. We think about Jesus coming the first time. He came in weakness as a child. He came to die. He doesn't come that way the second time. The second time he comes with a robe dipped in blood and a sword coming out of his mouth.
The second time he comes he will come in order to what Psalm 2 says. Well, I'll just read it to you. Ask of me and I will make the nations your heritage and the ends of the earth your possession. You shall break them with a rod of iron and dash them with pieces like a potter's vessel.
This is what it's getting at. That one day the kingdom of God coming as a stone will grow into a mountain and it will shatter the Babylonian rule that we all live under right now in this earth. What makes your heart sad? What makes your heart break?
What are you grieved over in this world? One day it will come untrue. And it will come untrue because of this stone that grows into a mouth much like Matthew chapter 13. What's another analogy for this? A mustard seed so small you can't even see it. It grows into a giant tree. That's the idea.
It starts small. Let me give you one more view of this. Ken, I know we're going pretty deep on this.
You know what the other view on this is of course? It's Daniel chapter 7. Now you don't have to turn there but let me just tell you about Daniel chapter 7. If you just slap your Bible up and read Daniel chapter 7 you'd be like, what?
It's weird. You've got bees coming out of the ocean and there's horns everywhere and eyes and all this stuff. Now what makes it easier is when you realize that Daniel chapter 7 is God giving Daniel the vision that Nebuchadnezzar has already had in chapter 2. Daniel 7 is just a retelling.
There's a couple more nuances. You actually get a glimpse of the antichrist and there's some things like that. But it's kind of a retelling of Daniel chapter 2. Now what happens in Daniel chapter 7?
Let me read this to you. And as I looked the beast was killed and the body was destroyed, given over to be burned with fire. As the rest of the beast their dominion was taken away. Now what was kind of in our text, this statue or whatever, is beasts in Daniel chapter 7. It's these different kingdoms and the ones that we've already named.
But their lives were prolonged for a season at a time. Now this is the point. I saw in the night visions and behold with the clouds of heaven there came one like a son of man and he came to the ancient of days who was presented before him. And to him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom that all peoples, all nations, all languages, I mean how many of us Christians are, it's every tribe or tongue or bust, right?
This is the promise. The son of man will come and he will be given this kingdom, every tribe, every nation, every language. And his dominion is an everlasting dominion which shall not pass away and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed. It's a retelling of Daniel chapter 2.
The stone comes back in Daniel chapter 7, but he comes as the son of man. And oh by the way, maybe you've heard many times in the New Testament, Jesus referred to himself as, or somebody say that he was, over 80 times in the gospels, more than anything else, what does Jesus call himself or what are people saying about Jesus, the son of man. If you've ever wondered what that is, this is all that it means. Every time you hear son of man, it's Jesus trying to get you to remember Daniel 7, I'm coming. And I'm bringing a kingdom that is everlasting.
That's what it means. Now what are we supposed to do with this? Well I would call you today at all of our campuses to trust God for final victory. And when we get this in our bones and we trust God for this final victory, then all of a sudden the twists and the turns and the fumble and the one minute, you know, to go in the game and all that stuff that just gets us so and the world and the political and all this stuff and I'm just and all of a sudden it's like, oh we win, I can calm down. Like the kingdom is coming, everlasting, every tribe, tongue and nation, starts as a stone, ends as a mountain, starts as a mustard seed, ends as a tree. The son of man will come again. You know what Matthew tells us, we need to be looking for the clouds for who to come again. The son of man. And he will come on the clouds again.
And when he does, we're going to see this great victory. And it helps us to survive the now. I mean we get into all this stuff with, you know, I think a lot of times we start thinking about prophecy and all that and we think that prophecy is about prediction. Prophecy is about preparation. Prophecy is about the church understanding what is coming so that we will be ready. You could say it like this, prophecy is for shaping character not satisfying curiosity. I mean when I see a chart with a million dates on it and all that kind of stuff, I'm like, eh, kind of missed the point. I'm like, man, I think actually the point is, not when is it going to happen, are you ready for when it does?
Are we there? You know, because here's the deal, guys, here's the deal with Christianity. I was reading this book this week, he wasn't talking about Christianity but he was talking about doing these races and this guy was a military guy. He was just talking about life and applied so well to the believer.
You know what he said? Well, I'm going to say it the way I would say it for the believer. The Christian life is like this, you're in the boxing ring, you're bloodied, you're beaten, you're about to punch yourself out but here's the deal, when you look over in that corner, there is no towel. All there is, is a cup man and a water bottle and a stool.
There are tools to help you breathe and to get back in the game but there is no towel to be thrown in. Now, what is one of these tools? One of these tools is biblical prophecy. That we would understand what is coming and that it would fortify our very souls. Guys, I know the coffee mug and I know the pastor and I know people have said, we don't know what the future holds but we know, you know, who holds the future and I have heard that before and that's fine and that's all well and good. Actually, we do know the future. The future is the kingdom of God, everlasting kingdom, stone, mountain. Psalm 2, every dominion and power that is arrayed against God broken. Everything's sad come untrue.
That is the future. Now, what does it do to our heart? Let me ask you this. Does the spirit, I got three questions and I'm done, okay? Number one, does the spirit need to break you of a love you have for the world right now?
And here's why I say that, okay? We're talking about a future kingdom, okay? It's hard to fall in love with that kingdom if we're already in love with this kingdom, right? So that's my first question.
Like, man, maybe today when we pray, bring, sing, the spirit would break you of something like that. Maybe there's a certain lifestyle that you're excited about, you see. I've seen all the social media, double income, no kids.
Have you guys seen this? They call themselves dink, okay? Double income, no kids. And they get to do a lot of stuff. They get to fly around the world and they get to, you know, I told Anna, I was like, man, we're more like silk. Single income, lot of kids, okay? So we don't get to do a lot of the cool, you know, but maybe you see something in the world and you're like, that seems like an incredible lifestyle and you're pining after falling in love with it.
Maybe God would break you of today. Second question, parents. All right, I mean, I could ask a thousand questions.
I just have three. Parents, how are we navigating a transformational life for our kids? Not in isolation, not assimilation. This takes wisdom and nobody can tell you, that's right, that's wrong, that's this, that's that. I mean, if there's clear scripture, I got it. Assimilation, man, into sin, never okay.
I'm talking about the gray. I mean, this is where we live. We live in Babylon, okay? I could be on both sides of the fence on this issue because I got one child that's homeschooled and I got two children that go to public school, okay?
So I can be whatever I want in this situation, all right? We're sitting in line at the public school. My son looks up and I mean, massive on the back of this truck right in front of us says, you guys seen the meme, man, COVID-19. This is what it says and he's like seven years old. He's asking me what this means.
It says COVID-19, stay home if you're sick, come over if you're thick. Daddy, what does that mean? I'm like, oh my gosh, okay? And I'm like, okay, here we are, we're in Babylon. How do I in this moment, not isolation, not assimilation, but son, we're into transformation and that's what we're into. And so I got to talk to you even at seven or eight years old about what some of the things that you read on the bathroom wall or whatever is. I mean, isolation, assimilation, you know, like I said, you're talking to a guy who moved his family to a farm with no internet for the last seven years, okay?
Isolation. I understand that. And then, but at the same time we're talking about the kids playing football. I'm like, man, I know what a football locker room is. I live that life and they're going into it.
It's like, man, is it right, wrong, whatever? No, we need to be thinking about spirit led community, wisdom, transformational living, okay? And then the third and final thing I'll say and I'll be done as Christian, don't twist or turn right now is going on in the world that has you thinking God's off his throne. Hey, there's a kingdom coming.
It's dominion is eternal. Let's pray. Father, we come before you right now and Lord, I ask that in this moment, Lord, you'll put your finger on some things in our heart and you'll move. And God, I pray that we will, Lord, I pray that we'll lean in God, not to isolation, not to assimilation, but to transformation. Lord, I pray that we'll do that by the power of your spirit, knowing that you hold the future. God, we trust you for that today and it's in Christ's name. We pray. Amen. Amen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-06 20:12:15 / 2023-05-06 20:28:36 / 16