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Discovery Magazine 9/1/2017

Daniel

Daniel was among the young men of noble birth who were taken captive in 606 B.C. by the Babylonians in their first of three invasions of southern Palestine. Daniel, whose name means “God is my judge,” lived through the entire 70-year period of exile. He witnessed the decline and fall of the mighty Babylonian Empire as well as the rise of the Medo-Persian Empire.

In addition to serving as God’s prophet, he also served as a powerful political leader under Nebuchadnezzar and Darius. His personal spirituality and dedication to God are seen in his serious prayer life and in his willingness to serve God regardless of the people or laws that were hostile toward him.

Central Theme:

Like Ezekiel, Daniel focuses on God’s authority and power. (Indeed, “the Most High rules in the kingdom of men”—4:17,25,32; 5:21). God’s will and purposes cannot be thwarted. He will accomplish His intentions no matter what happens in human history. Daniel shows the importance of staying faithful even in tough situations.

God took care of His children (even in captivity), and He promised them the ultimate care of salvation in the future through Christ. In the book of Daniel the Jews are restored to their homeland after 70 years of captivity, but long-term spiritual restoration would come with Christ about 500 years later.

 

Outline
1  Daniel’s religious dedication and political favor
2  Nebuchadnezzar’s statue dream
3  Shadrach, Meshach, Abed-Nego, and the furnace
4  Nebuchadnezzar’s vision of the tall tree
5  Belshazzar’s feast and the fall of Babylon
6  Daniel and the den of lions
7  Daniel’s vision of the four beasts
8  Daniel’s vision of a ram and goat
9  Daniel’s prayer and the 70-week prophecy
10-12  Daniel’s prophetic panorama





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