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A Vision of Jesus Christ

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice
The Truth Network Radio
July 17, 2020 8:00 am

A Vision of Jesus Christ

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice

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July 17, 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 study reviewing Internet ministry of the alliance of convincing evangelicals featuring the Bible teaching of Dr. James Boyce 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 repairing you to think and act biblically. The seventh chapter. The chapter that includes accounts of the vision.

Daniel out of four beasts representing four successive world empires. There are two verses which I find absolutely fascinating. They recorded vision that Daniel had of the Lord Jesus Christ and their fascinating because so far as I'm aware there absolutely unique in the Old Testament. This chapter has entered a judgment. See scene at which the various kingdoms of the world are judged just at the point where God the father judges the kingdoms and we would expect the rule of God Almighty himself to be established in glory and in power forever. We read instead of a new figure on it was not been introduced until this point, at least by name, who here is described as one like the Son of Man, said of him that he approached the ancient of days, he was led into his presence. Send that to him was given authority, glory and sovereign power all peoples, nations and men of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed, as I say this is fascinating because so far as I know this is the only vision of Jesus Christ quite like this in all the pages of the Old Testament is not to say of course that there are not other revelations of the Lord Jesus Christ in the Old Testament, or even that there are not manifold indications of a plurality of the Godhead, and even perhaps pre-incarnate appearances of the Lord Jesus Christ very first intimation of a division or plurality within the Godhead is found in the very first verse of the Bible verse that tells us in the beginning God created the heavens and the arts. I say it's found in that verse because word for God that occurs there is a great word for God in the Old Testament is Elohim and that word is plural now Hebrew scholar Stella said that doesn't necessarily imply a plurality of the Godhead and that of course is quite true. Hebrew language can use the plural parenthesis as if this were to say that God God, about whom the Bible is written God of all the gods he wraps up the power and glory of any gods that might ever exist in himself and undoubtedly is true, little bit later in that same chapter we find not merely that the word for God is plural. We find plural pronouns used of God as well. God says as he contemplates making man, let us make man in our image later on in the 11th chapter in the story of the Tower of Babel God says to himself, let us go down and confound their language as I say, none of this proves the Trinity is leaving proof that there is a second person whom we know today is Jesus, the second person of the Godhead, but it certainly is striking in the book, which, like the Bible so much emphasizes God's unity. It's fact which is almost inexplicable and less as we discover as we go on to read the Bible, there really is Trinity in the intimation of this is found at the very beginning. I think also of those appearances of the figure describes the angel of the Lord of the messenger of the Lord figure, which is seen several times in the Old Testament. The first perhaps the first explicit appearance is when God came to Abraham to tell them about the impending destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah are three figures that appear to Abraham in that account to other may well be angels, but seems a bit different.

He speaks as God said, shall I buy from Abraham what I am about to do the chapter refers to him as God.

As a matter of fact the very beginning of the chapter. The very first verse we read now the Lord appeared to Abraham as he sat under the great trees of Barbara in the cool of the day.

See here in the pages of Genesis. There is a character whose full being is not explained but who may well be, and we suspect it is because of the later revelation a pre-incarnate manifestation of Jesus Christ.

This may be a form in which God appeared to Adam and Eve in the garden before the fall and at the time of their fallen order to render judgment. It's probably the figure whom we have already seen in Daniel in the second chapter.

There we have out of the burning fiery furnace. Then we know that when Nebuchadnezzar through Shadrach me shack and Abednego into the furnace later looked in. He saw one whom he said was like a son of the God's fourth figure Nebuchadnezzar did know who that was.

Perhaps many who have read this, the God of Daniel fail to know who he is, but it does seem natural to identify them.

Jesus Christ was I say there are many such texts. The Old Testament I mention one more in the six chapter of Isaiah. Isaiah says, in the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord's. I am lifted up in his glory filled the temple. That in itself would not be remarkable in the 12th chapter of John.

John apparently refers to this saying. Isaiah saw is that is Jesus glory and wrote of him. That's the only section of Isaiah that can really refer to that that is Jesus and his glory so it would seem to be a case of John saying that when Isaiah saw the scene in heaven. The Lord seated upon the throne, high and lifted up what Isaiah actually was seeing was Jesus Christ as eyesight of any text like this again, we have to acknowledge that when we look at them. They are at best unclear and it's quite hard, even with our knowledge of the later revelation to be dogmatic about the we may say as I have that plural name for God suggests a plurality of the Godhead may say that the figure who appeared Abraham perhaps to Adam and Eve. Maybe Shadrach me shack to the bed to go was Jesus Christ. Not absolutely sure of those things, yet here I contrast this great seventh chapter of Daniel.

We have one who was clearly distinguished from God the father who is called here ancient of days, you have two fingers ancient of days, God sits upon the throne to render judgment. Then you have this second divine figure like a Son of Man, God the father gives all authority, glory and sovereign power whom could such glory and sovereign power be given except to second person of the Godhead, so as I say these verses are unique in their absolutely fascinating.

Fascinating. Of course, but they should not be entirely unexpected lease not in the context of a study of Daniel, the great theme of Daniel as we have seen several times already concerns authority Ray and more particularly close.

God has authority to write found that theme back in the very beginning of the book in the first chapter where the entire book is introduced by reference to Nebuchadnezzar, and the fact that when he conquered Jerusalem, he took the sacred vessels from the Temple in Jerusalem and carried them off to Babylon where he laid them up in the temple of his God, it was Nebuchadnezzar's way of saying by God or gods are stronger than the Jewish God stronger than Jehovah. So I take his vessels and I bring them to the temple of my God, where there to be used in his service, certainly did seem that way because Nebuchadnezzar had overpowered Jerusalem, but he did seem to be stronger and we can well understand all Nebuchadnezzar's pagan ignorance might have said, well, my God is stronger or what he probably thought I am stronger that God or any other God's got an answer.

Nebuchadnezzar and his answer was that although it is true that he had allowed Jerusalem to fall to Nebuchadnezzar's army's execution of his own judgment against his own people were departed from him. God was nevertheless in control of history. He was in control of Nebuchadnezzar. He numbered Nebuchadnezzar's days just a seat number. Those about Chavez or his successor and is not going to be the case matter how much Nebuchadnezzar wished that his kingdom would endure forever does not determine the kingdoms and all, merely human kingdoms pass away. God was teaching that Nebuchadnezzar's kingdom would be succeeded by the kingdom of the Medes and the Persians kingdom of the Medes and the Persians would be succeeded by the kingdom of the Greeks, the kingdom of the Greeks would be succeeded by the kingdom of the Romans so on. Throughout history until at last the kingdom of God's anointed would come like a great walk would grow up to be a mountain fill entire earth this point. You see were ready for a more thorough introduction of that figure who should bus rain, we might say, of course, add it's a perfectly logical question how even then any income however blessed by God can be eternal. David knew this David was told by God that God would establish his throne forever. David's response when God told him that was to say, but more how can this be, this is not the nature of a man or a man's kingdom all things human pass away.

Indeed, even, heaven and earth will pass away as I say is a perfectly proper response, except for the fact that this king who was coming. One is kingdom will not pass away is no mere human king is true is a man is described even in this prophecy as being like a Son of Man but is no mere man is also God is the God man, therefore he will reign with the power of God and his kingdom will be established by God's own power and maintained by God's authority. This you see is the point in Daniel in which this great theme emerges clearly for the first time exactly what you find in the Psalms where we read, behold, I have set my king on Zion is what God is doing in his king.

The king will forever is the Lord Jesus Christ most interesting thing about this passage, however, is the way the Lord himself uses its in the New Testament, there are many titles in the New Testament that are given to Jesus Christ, where Christ is one of them. It means Messiah. When we say the Lord Jesus Christ. We use another is the word Lord Jesus is described as the good Shepherd is called the resurrection from the life is the bridegroom is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end is the rock for many, many other divine titles used for at least the great I am the Bible is still with titles used bus of the Lord Jesus Christ significant that the Lord himself did not take those titles and use them personally or did not call himself the Lord Jesus, except on one occasion when he dealt with the Samaritan woman did not say I am the Messiah said Jesus took this phrase from Daniel this phrase Son of Man and habitually referred to himself in that way that title Son of Man is used by the Lord Jesus Christ for himself. 69 times in the synoptic Gospels and another dozen times in the Gospel of John was fascinated. Scholars, one of the most useful books that I have ever read on the Jewish expectations of the Messiah is a book called, he that cometh by a great Norwegian scholar by the name of Sigmund Bullwinkle did it many years ago and it was a classic at the time it remained a classic ever since. It's a major starting numbers about 500 pages of my addition but the significant thing about Bullwinkle's treatment of the Jewish expectations of the Messiah is that about 500 pages. Bullwinkle gives 100 pages was discussion of justice.

One term Son of Man and how Jesus uses is interested in the course because that is the term Jesus used the jeep thing and Bullwinkle's mind is to answer the question why Jesus preferred this term. This somewhat day guitar over all the other terms were far more explicit and why Jesus the same time forgo the use of the other messianic titles. Now that's an interesting question here the answers mowing again as I think the right. First of all, he points out that this term Son of Man was uniquely suited to be used by Jesus to say to most important things he wanted to say about his person. First of all, Jesus use the term to teach that he was a genuine man. That is, he was a human being at phrase Son of Man means that, of course, and Aramaic or Hebrew idiom was quite natural to refer to someone in this way, son of if you wanted to emphasize some particular characteristic. For example, if you wanted to say that someone was the center.

It would be quite natural, son of sin just was an idiomatic way of saying it was a center of you wanted to say that someone was wealthy. It would be quite natural to call him a son of wealth again was an idiomatic way of speaking. So when Jesus uses this term probably Aramaic. Incidentally, this term in Daniel was written Aramaic modern classic Hebrew Jesus use this term and Aramaic 20 was saying in the first instance at least, was that he was a man. It was a human being is significant not because of startling anybody looked at them and said he was a bad but startling that this is the third Jesus chooses to use for himself.

He could've used any of the titles I would've emphasized his deity, he could emphasize that he was God. And yet, instead of that he uses the term by which he identifies with positive way of saying that I'm a man, just as you are and I am not the least bit ashamed. As a matter fact I delight in that particular identification that is also true that the start expresses his deity. Because you see it's not simply the case that when Jesus referred to himself as Son of Man used Daniels phrase Word for Word that is a son of man when Jesus referred to himself.

He always refers to himself as the son of man that is with the definite article say well why is that important.

It's important because when Jesus refers to himself as the Son of Man, he say I am the Son of Man of Daniel is any Son of Man. I just any human being I'm a character that Daniel refers to in his prophecy. This is the character described by Daniel is coming with the clouds of heaven associating with the ancient of days, whom all glory and power and sovereign authority is given his kingdom is an everlasting kingdom that will know no end. You may recall that the Lord did that on one occasion at his trial, Caiaphas the high priest was frustrated in the conduct of the trial because they had been unable to find anything which they could justly accuse him all that had accusations but they couldn't substantiated witnesses wouldn't agree. Finally, Caiaphas, and what was a brilliant political stroke so it was illegal.

The high priest was not allowed to interrogate a witness, less address Jesus directly and said, tell us plainly. Are you the Christ the son of the living God. This point Jesus said yes you have said that correctly. I am on the time is coming when you will see the Son of Man returning on the clouds of heaven see it was a direct reference. The seventh chapter of Daniel verses 13 and 14.

Jesus was, I guess I am at divine figure. Anyway this is the way high priest and the Sanhedrin understood it because as soon as Jesus said that they immediately burst out Caiaphas voice their thoughts. This is blasphemy. Why do we need any further witnesses. You have heard is blasphemy from his own mouth so that an executed say when Jesus but this phrase Son of Man from Daniel. He was choosing a phrase that allowed them to stress his humanity. On the one hand, at his deity. On the other. But there's more to it. Even that chief reason why Jesus use this term in Bullwinkle's judgment is because it was vague in the understanding of contemporary Judaism and because this allowed Jesus to infuse the term with his own meaning rather than inadvertently fall into the misconceptions of the Messiah were current in his day is the juicing price they were fervently anticipating the Messiah. This was the great promise of the Old Testament. They conceived of the Messiah as being a political deliverer. They were under the hand of wrong. I thought well God has promised to send us a Redeemer who will drive out the Romans drive out any oppressors we might have established the throne of David, so if Jesus had said I Messiah. That's exactly what they would've thought they would've said well he's claiming to be a political Messiah going to set up a throne is going to raise armies going to drive out the room got an idea of the fervor of this kind of expectation. By the way they approach John the Baptist is John the evangelist records it in the first chapter see the political anticipation of the deliverer was so great that whenever anybody can Judaism merge tube was just above the average. Everyone focused around them and they had even something like a list of check questions that they went through to try to determine who this unusual individualist charismatic personality was drawn was like that and he received the list of questions soon as he began to baptize in the area of the Jordan. People began to throng out to see the authorities in Jerusalem, send a delegation down to check about the other list of questions I guess today they would have a little black book. They got John aside after one of his meetings open the book so have a few questions like answer the first question is this.

Are you the Messiah was the chief thing and John said no I am not. I am not the Christ. Early in the book and second questions that are you Elijah the reason that I question is that in the very last verses of the Old Testament. There is a prophecy that Elijah is going to come before that great and terrible day of the Lord. In other words, he is going to be the more honorable Messiah, so they said about the Messiah after the forerunner of the Messiah is very large and he said no I'm not well is only one of the question. In their book.

One other thing they could think to ask above and that was because back in the 18th chapter of Deuteronomy the 15th and 18th versus God said to Moses that one day he was going to send a prophet like him who would turn the hearts of the people to the Lord. So I said with you're not Messiah and allied to the forerunner are you a prophet and again John said no. Well, I was her questions.

I close the book, we went back up to Jerusalem and gave a report. I don't think they even stayed to hear him describe what he really wants that is the voice of one crying in the wilderness saying prepare the way of the Lord and they most certainly do not believe on Jesus of Nazareth.

When John later identified him as the 1 Whose Way he had come prepared onset of Jesus, behold the Lamb of God takes away sin of the world. They went through their check questions you say this is the way it was safe. These misunderstandings of the Messiah and Jesus and said I'm Messiah. Well then I would've expected the political deliverer they wouldn't of been able to hear anything he said instead of that he took this term which as I said was somewhat vague and know quite what to think of the Son of Man of Daniel, and he began to infuse it with his own meeting.

I hear the things he used to teach.

First of all, used to teach his preexistence. John 313, just a few verses before John 316, which we know so well.

Jesus said of himself. No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven, even Son of Man. I'm sure that even the disciples who were often very slow to understand Christ's teachings understood what he was saying at this point Jesus was referring to the Son of Man and Daniel who in Daniel was identified as being in heaven with the ancient of days on the throne of glory. Jesus was saying no one you know no one on earth is ever been able to talk about heaven except the Son of Man because the Son of Man began in heaven and is come from their. This was his teaching about himself. He was saying you say important as the incarnation was that is important is it was I the eternal son of God became man in order to achieve your salvation.

My existence did not begin with the moment of the incarnation. I go back into eternity.

That isn't true of us. We have birthdays we remember birthdays because we knowledge the before that didn't exist. Now we do exist of this is where we start.

Jesus is not like that so use this term, Son of Man reference to this character existed in the time of Daniel and understand before that to say you want to begin to understand my person. You have to recognize that I was in existence from eternity past and secondly use this term to teach that he must suffer.

Nothing in Daniel seven verses 13 and 14 teach that the Messiah must suffer, although, as we are going to say in the ninth chapter verse 26. There is a suggestion of it.

Brief suggestion but Jesus always understood that he must suffer, and indeed he made this the focal point of his ministry moment ago I referred to John 313 is teaching price preexistence. The very next versus what is the verses that come between John 313 and the well-known John 316 teach this matter of suffering and here they are. They read just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life. This was sleep. Hardest thing that Jesus had to get across in his day because nobody expected the Messiah to suffer and nobody expected Jesus to suffer, especially those loved it and who benefited from his teaching Peter as he sought rebuked him, on occasion, saying, far be it from you, Lord, that this should happen. Jesus taught that this was the destiny of the Son of Man and he stuck that work. The God given him to do.

The third thing Jesus use this term. Son of Man teaches that a person must be joined to him in a personal way in order to be saved in the sixth chapter of John versus 53 and 54 Jesus said, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you, whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day as I chapter goes on because very evident that this idea of eating and drinking is a metaphor for faith's way of teaching the faith must be a personal and life transforming thing is no mere intellectual exercise faith is that by which we are joined to the Lord Jesus Christ and he becomes a part of us is real as much a part of us as something would be if we aided or drank it and it entered into our system physically.

Jesus is received by faith and enters into our system spiritually. Finally, Jesus use this term Son of Man to teach about the final judgment. John five 2527. Time is coming and is now come when the dead will hear the voice of the son of God and those who hear will live. For as the father, his wife and himself so he has granted the son to have life in himself, and he is given him authority to judge because he is the son of man, see, this is another reference to Daniel seven areas referring to the judgment and he says that God the father has given him that is Jesus Christ authority to judge in all human affairs and the reason for this is that he's no mere man is the Son of Man of Daniel we read that and we recognize that this has bearing upon us, we think about Jesus in the days of his flesh.

He was the gentle Jesus the one who came to die on the cross for our salvation.

We understand this part of Jesus own teaching that the day is coming when he will return and judgment that he will pour out judgment upon all persons according to their relationship to himself for a blessing upon those who are joined to him and saving faith will pour out judgment of separation from his presence and eternal suffering upon those who like Nebuchadnezzar else, as are the other great emperors of history have resisted his rule and spurns his name want you to see one more thing, that it's related to what I just said and that is that in that day everyone will bow before Jesus. This is what the text in Daniel says all peoples, nations and men of every language worshiped him. What Paul says to the second chapter of Philippians before him every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord of the glory of God the father. That's a lot of people. Every time every knee all peoples, all nations, all persons of every language under the sun. We think of large numbers of people. We tend to turn to various mass events or mass movements of history, but this is more people even than that. This is more people that attended the live aid rock concerts or the farm aid rock concerts. This is more people that were present at Woodstock many more people will submit to the authority of the Son of Man, then watched Dallas on Friday nights or dynasty on a Wednesday or people will see and acknowledge the glory of Jesus and watch football on Super Bowl Sunday or people will bow before him that are going to link hands across America this afternoon. Every knee will bow. That means you your knee will bow to Jesus and the question is what is the spirit of your heart in which you will bow you by willingly is one who gratefully thank fully acknowledges his rightful reign over you in this universe. Will you be forced to your needs reluctantly are the Angels moments before your judgment is pronounced in your banished from his presence forever. You are the bow willingly, then you must bow willingly now in faith because today is the day of salvation I want you to be part of that great heavenly company that's described in Revelation is numbering thousands upon thousands in 10,00010,000 that company that is going to encircle the throne of God and is going to praise God father son Holy Spirit saying were the is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise will sing together with every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth. To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise, honor and glory and power wherever and if so. Amen and amen our great God and our heavenly father would have stood by that same power that establishes the Lord Jesus Christ upon his throne, you might in this day.

Indeed, in this hour, draw many to yourself willing submission and adoration.

Father blessed him bless us.

To that end, granted in our midst and our time in partial anticipation of that great day when every knee shall bow glory, honor and power might be given to Jesus Christ our Savior and our Lord. Amen. You have been listening to the Bible study our production of the alliance of confessing Evangelicals lines of confessing Evangelicals exist to promote a biblical understanding and worldview.

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