Gracie's Quest

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One God, One Lord, One King…

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Daniel 5

King Belshazzar made a great feast for a thousand of his lords and drank wine in front of the thousand.

 Belshazzar, when he tasted the wine, commanded that the vessels of gold and of silver that Nebuchadnezzar his father had taken out of the temple in Jerusalem be brought, that the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines might drink from them.

 Then they brought in the golden vessels that had been taken out of the temple, the house of God in Jerusalem, and the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines drank from them.

 They drank wine and praised the gods of gold and silver, bronze, iron, wood, and stone.

 Immediately the fingers of a human hand appeared and wrote on the plaster of the wall of the king’s palace, opposite the lampstand. And the king saw the hand as it wrote.

 Then the king’s color changed, and his thoughts alarmed him; his limbs gave way, and his knees knocked together.

 The king called loudly to bring in the enchanters, the Chaldeans, and the astrologers. The king declared to the wise men of Babylon, “Whoever reads this writing, and shows me its interpretation, shall be clothed with purple and have a chain of gold around his neck and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom.”

 Then all the king’s wise men came in, but they could not read the writing or make known to the king the interpretation.

 Then King Belshazzar was greatly alarmed, and his color changed, and his lords were perplexed.

 The queen, because of the words of the king and his lords, came into the banqueting hall, and the queen declared, “O king, live forever! Let not your thoughts alarm you or your color change.

There is a man in your kingdom in whom is the spirit of the holy gods. In the days of your father, light and understanding and wisdom like the wisdom of the gods were found in him, and King Nebuchadnezzar, your father—your father the king—made him chief of the magicians, enchanters, Chaldeans, and astrologers,

 because an excellent spirit, knowledge, and understanding to interpret dreams, explain riddles, and solve problems were found in this Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar. Now let Daniel be called, and he will show the interpretation.”

 Then Daniel was brought in before the king. The king answered and said to Daniel, “You are that Daniel, one of the exiles of Judah, whom the king my father brought from Judah.

 I have heard of you that the spirit of the gods is in you, and that light and understanding and excellent wisdom are found in you.

 Now the wise men, the enchanters, have been brought in before me to read this writing and make known to me its interpretation, but they could not show the interpretation of the matter.

 But I have heard that you can give interpretations and solve problems. Now if you can read the writing and make known to me its interpretation, you shall be clothed with purple and have a chain of gold around your neck and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom.”

Then Daniel answered and said before the king, “Let your gifts be for yourself, and give your rewards to another. Nevertheless, I will read the writing to the king and make known to him the interpretation.

O king, the Most High God gave Nebuchadnezzar your father kingship and greatness and glory and majesty.

 And because of the greatness that he gave him, all peoples, nations, and languages trembled and feared before him. Whom he would, he killed, and whom he would, he kept alive; whom he would, he raised up, and whom he would, he humbled.

 But when his heart was lifted up and his spirit was hardened so that he dealt proudly, he was brought down from his kingly throne, and his glory was taken from him.

 He was driven from among the children of mankind, and his mind was made like that of a beast, and his dwelling was with the wild donkeys. He was fed grass like an ox, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven, until he knew that the Most High God rules the kingdom of mankind and sets over it whom he will.

 And you his son, Belshazzar, have not humbled your heart, though you knew all this,

 but you have lifted up yourself against the Lord of heaven. And the vessels of his house have been brought in before you, and you and your lords, your wives, and your concubines have drunk wine from them. And you have praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron, wood, and stone, which do not see or hear or know, but the God in whose hand is your breath, and whose are all your ways, you have not honored.

 “Then from his presence the hand was sent, and this writing was inscribed.

 And this is the writing that was inscribed: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, and PARSIN.

 This is the interpretation of the matter: MENE, God has numbered the days of your kingdom and brought it to an end;

 TEKEL, you have been weighed in the balances and found wanting;

 PERES, your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians.”

 Then Belshazzar gave the command, and Daniel was clothed with purple, a chain of gold was put around his neck, and a proclamation was made about him, that he should be the third ruler in the kingdom.

 That very night Belshazzar the Chaldean king was killed.

 And Darius the Mede received the kingdom, being about sixty-two years old.

 

We are told who God is in this passage, both who he is and the power he has. He is greater than any of us, no matter what earthly, human power we hold. Upon reflection, where is our heart, does it glory in Him or in our own accomplishments and station in life? If we are His, we will be giving Him all the glory.

 

the Most High God rules the kingdom of mankind and sets over it whom he will.

 

Disclaimer:  if ads are appearing anywhere on this page it is because they are placed there by WordPress not by me.  I have read the information on ads and in order to be ad free now, Word Press charges a fee.  I apologize for any inconvenience these ads may cause you and if they are inappropriate please message me.  Thank you, gracie

October 24, 2014 Posted by | bible study, Encouragement from the Word, The Word in our lives | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Righteous perspective…

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Daniel 4:25-37

that you shall be driven from among men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. You shall be made to eat grass like an ox, and you shall be wet with the dew of heaven, and seven periods of time shall pass over you, till you know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will.

 And as it was commanded to leave the stump of the roots of the tree, your kingdom shall be confirmed for you from the time that you know that Heaven rules.

 Therefore, O king, let my counsel be acceptable to you: break off your sins by practicing righteousness, and your iniquities by showing mercy to the oppressed, that there may perhaps be a lengthening of your prosperity.”

 All this came upon King Nebuchadnezzar.

At the end of twelve months he was walking on the roof of the royal palace of Babylon,

 and the king answered and said, “Is not this great Babylon, which I have built by my mighty power as a royal residence and for the glory of my majesty?”

 While the words were still in the king’s mouth, there fell a voice from heaven, “O King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is spoken: The kingdom has departed from you,

and you shall be driven from among men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. And you shall be made to eat grass like an ox, and seven periods of time shall pass over you, until you know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will.”

 Immediately the word was fulfilled against Nebuchadnezzar. He was driven from among men and ate grass like an ox, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven till his hair grew as long as eagles’ feathers, and his nails were like birds’ claws.

 At the end of the days I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my reason returned to me, and I blessed the Most High, and praised and honored him who lives forever, for his dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom endures from generation to generation;

 all the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, and he does according to his will among the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand or say to him, “What have you done?”

At the same time my reason returned to me, and for the glory of my kingdom, my majesty and splendor returned to me. My counselors and my lords sought me, and I was established in my kingdom, and still more greatness was added to me.

 Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, for all his works are right and his ways are just; and those who walk in pride he is able to humble.- from e-Sword

 

From the writings of an ancient king who once ruled the entire then known world come these words. God’s word is truth, he does not lie. We learn of who he is and what he does as we read his word. That word informs us as we live; how to conduct ourselves, our actions and our words, our thoughts. Over and over we are shown the risk we take when we allow pride in ourselves to arise, the kind of pride that lays claim what is rightfully God’s. Righteous perspective gives place to the One from whom all comes. We are able to do what we do only by His grace as it is given to us by God, our Creator. Let us be careful to put the credit where it rightfully belongs. We can do all things through Christ — two words that give hope, understanding and ability. Beware of the pride we hear spoken all around us. God is still a jealous god. Now that we have salvation, through His grace, let us live lives that demonstrate love for our God and fellowmen. Not seeking our own honor but raising Christ who draws all men to himself. Be sure judgment may come on those who persist to live in the place Nebuchadnezzar lived, and we may find ourselves at its effect, but God protected the Israelites in Goshen and He has not changed. He looks after His own.

 

praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, for all his works are right and his ways are just; and those who walk in pride he is able to humble.

Disclaimer:  if ads are appearing anywhere on this page it is because they are placed there by WordPress not by me.  I have read the information on ads and in order to be ad free now, Word Press charges a fee.  I apologize for any inconvenience these ads may cause you and if they are inappropriate please message me.  Thank you, gracie

October 23, 2014 Posted by | bible study, Encouragement from the Word, The Word in our lives | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Most High rules…

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Daniel 4:16-24

Then Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar, was dismayed for a while, and his thoughts alarmed him. The king answered and said, “Belteshazzar, let not the dream or the interpretation alarm you.” Belteshazzar answered and said, “My lord, may the dream be for those who hate you and its interpretation for your enemies!

 The tree you saw, which grew and became strong, so that its top reached to heaven, and it was visible to the end of the whole earth,

 whose leaves were beautiful and its fruit abundant, and in which was food for all, under which beasts of the field found shade, and in whose branches the birds of the heavens lived—

 it is you, O king, who have grown and become strong. Your greatness has grown and reaches to heaven, and your dominion to the ends of the earth.

 And because the king saw a watcher, a holy one, coming down from heaven and saying, ‘Chop down the tree and destroy it, but leave the stump of its roots in the earth, bound with a band of iron and bronze, in the tender grass of the field, and let him be wet with the dew of heaven, and let his portion be with the beasts of the field, till seven periods of time pass over him,’

 this is the interpretation, O king: It is a decree of the Most High, which has come upon my lord the king,

 that you shall be driven from among men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. You shall be made to eat grass like an ox, and you shall be wet with the dew of heaven, and seven periods of time shall pass over you, till you know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will.

 And as it was commanded to leave the stump of the roots of the tree, your kingdom shall be confirmed for you from the time that you know that Heaven rules.

 Therefore, O king, let my counsel be acceptable to you: break off your sins by practicing righteousness, and your iniquities by showing mercy to the oppressed, that there may perhaps be a lengthening of your prosperity.”

 All this came upon King Nebuchadnezzar.

At the end of twelve months he was walking on the roof of the royal palace of Babylon,

 and the king answered and said, “Is not this great Babylon, which I have built by my mighty power as a royal residence and for the glory of my majesty?”

 While the words were still in the king’s mouth, there fell a voice from heaven, “O King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is spoken: The kingdom has departed from you,

 and you shall be driven from among men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. And you shall be made to eat grass like an ox, and seven periods of time shall pass over you, until you know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will.”

 Immediately the word was fulfilled against Nebuchadnezzar. He was driven from among men and ate grass like an ox, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven till his hair grew as long as eagles’ feathers, and his nails were like birds’ claws.

 At the end of the days I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my reason returned to me, and I blessed the Most High, and praised and honored him who lives forever, for his dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom endures from generation to generation;

ll the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, and he does according to his will among the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand or say to him, “What have you done?”

 At the same time my reason returned to me, and for the glory of my kingdom, my majesty and splendor returned to me. My counselors and my lords sought me, and I was established in my kingdom, and still more greatness was added to me.

 Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, for all his works are right and his ways are just; and those who walk in pride he is able to humble.

“until you learn that the Most High rules in the human kingdom and gives it to whomever he pleases.”

Has God changed? Has humanity? It is good for us to recognize who is in control. We do not grant it to him, he has it! We do well to recognize who he is, what he does and who we are. We can do all things in him. The key lies in two small words…in him. Let us recognize who he is, give him all honor and glory. Give him respect as that one does who works with a dangerous substance knowing what it can do if misused. He is all power and his words stand. Let us not be found in a place where the word is spoken against us. Let us be in that place of love and obedience, respect and honor, recognizing who he is and what he does and what he has done for us, It is not his wish that all perish; for that reason he gave his son for our salvation. Can we rest in that and give him glory? Let us say with Nebuchadnezzar:

 

praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, for all his works are right and his ways are just; and those who walk in pride he is able to humble.

Disclaimer:  if ads are appearing anywhere on this page it is because they are placed there by WordPress not by me.  I have read the information on ads and in order to be ad free now, Word Press charges a fee.  I apologize for any inconvenience these ads may cause you and if they are inappropriate please message me.  Thank you, gracie

October 22, 2014 Posted by | bible study, Encouragement from the Word, The Word in our lives | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Can others see the Spirit of the Holy God in us?

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Dan4:1-18

 

 I, Nebuchadnezzar, was at ease in my house and prospering in my palace.

 I saw a dream that made me afraid. As I lay in bed the fancies and the visions of my head alarmed me.

 So I made a decree that all the wise men of Babylon should be brought before me, that they might make known to me the interpretation of the dream.

 Then the magicians, the enchanters, the Chaldeans, and the astrologers came in, and I told them the dream, but they could not make known to me its interpretation.

 At last Daniel came in before me—he who was named Belteshazzar after the name of my god, and in whom is the spirit of the holy gods—and I told him the dream, saying,

 “O Belteshazzar, chief of the magicians, because I know that the spirit of the holy gods is in you and that no mystery is too difficult for you, tell me the visions of my dream that I saw and their interpretation.

 The visions of my head as I lay in bed were these: I saw, and behold, a tree in the midst of the earth, and its height was great.

 The tree grew and became strong, and its top reached to heaven, and it was visible to the end of the whole earth.

 Its leaves were beautiful and its fruit abundant, and in it was food for all. The beasts of the field found shade under it, and the birds of the heavens lived in its branches, and all flesh was fed from it.

 “I saw in the visions of my head as I lay in bed, and behold, a watcher, a holy one, came down from heaven.

 He proclaimed aloud and said thus: ‘Chop down the tree and lop off its branches, strip off its leaves and scatter its fruit. Let the beasts flee from under it and the birds from its branches.

 But leave the stump of its roots in the earth, bound with a band of iron and bronze, amid the tender grass of the field. Let him be wet with the dew of heaven. Let his portion be with the beasts in the grass of the earth.

 Let his mind be changed from a man’s, and let a beast’s mind be given to him; and let seven periods of time pass over him.

 The sentence is by the decree of the watchers, the decision by the word of the holy ones, to the end that the living may know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will and sets over it the lowliest of men.’

 This dream I, King Nebuchadnezzar, saw. And you, O Belteshazzar, tell me the interpretation, because all the wise men of my kingdom are not able to make known to me the interpretation, but you are able, for the spirit of the holy gods is in you.”

 

The most powerful man of his time yet he knows fear and discomfort. His previous experiences, however, also allowed him the knowledge of where to go for answers. He recognized there is a power greater than he and greater than this world. With all the disrespect evident today is it any wonder that evil accompanies it and flourishes. We also know where to go for answers. God has not changed, humanity has not changed. Circumstances, perhaps, but the same power and help is available to us today from God as was then. Are we fully aware of that? Do we access it? Can those who know us say of us; “… the spirit of the holy gods is in you.” ? Is the Spirit of the Holy God within us and can the evidence of that be seen in our daily walk with him in how we treat others?

Disclaimer:  if ads are appearing anywhere on this page it is because they are placed there by WordPress not by me.  I have read the information on ads and in order to be ad free now, Word Press charges a fee.  I apologize for any inconvenience these ads may cause you and if they are inappropriate please message me.  Thank you, gracie

October 21, 2014 Posted by | bible study, Encouragement from the Word, The Word in our lives | , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The only One to fear…

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Daniel 3:19-30;4:1-4

 

 Then Nebuchadnezzar was filled with fury, and the expression of his face was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. He ordered the furnace heated seven times more than it was usually heated.

 And he ordered some of the mighty men of his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace.

 Then these men were bound in their cloaks, their tunics, their hats, and their other garments, and they were thrown into the burning fiery furnace.

 Because the king’s order was urgent and the furnace overheated, the flame of the fire killed those men who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.

 And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, fell bound into the burning fiery furnace.

 Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished and rose up in haste. He declared to his counselors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the fire?” They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.”

 He answered and said, “But I see four men unbound, walking in the midst of the fire, and they are not hurt; and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods.”

 Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the door of the burning fiery furnace; he declared, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here!” Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego came out from the fire.

 And the satraps, the prefects, the governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together and saw that the fire had not had any power over the bodies of those men. The hair of their heads was not singed, their cloaks were not harmed, and no smell of fire had come upon them.

 Nebuchadnezzar answered and said, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who has sent his angel and delivered his servants, who trusted in him, and set aside the king’s command, and yielded up their bodies rather than serve and worship any god except their own God.

 Therefore I make a decree: Any people, nation, or language that speaks anything against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego shall be torn limb from limb, and their houses laid in ruins, for there is no other god who is able to rescue in this way.”

 Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the province of Babylon.

 King Nebuchadnezzar to all peoples, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth: Peace be multiplied to you!

 It has seemed good to me to show the signs and wonders that the Most High God has done for me.

 How great are his signs, how mighty his wonders! His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and his dominion endures from generation to generation.

 

How strong is our faith? Are we able as these three, to say, “even if he doesn’t” and stand firmly rooted in the knowledge that our hope is in God, believing what he has said and done? Even when faced with evil this strong; can we say “our God is able to save us…”; has already saved us? When fears arise, will our fear and love of God be greater than any fear this world can bring? Is this evident in our personal lives; or do we fret and worry over disease epidemics, the onslaught of armies who fear no one and do evil in the full sight of all, the tearing away of our freedoms to worship as we believe? When we pray “thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven…” do we believe it and mean it?

 

A pagan king, given to pride and destruction was able to recognize the power greater than his. He says:

 

“Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who has sent his angel and delivered his servants, who trusted in him, and set aside the king’s command, and yielded up their bodies rather than serve and worship any god except their own God. “

 

Let us yield all to God and serve Him alone.

Disclaimer:  if ads are appearing anywhere on this page it is because they are placed there by WordPress not by me.  I have read the information on ads and in order to be ad free now, Word Press charges a fee.  I apologize for any inconvenience these ads may cause you and if they are inappropriate please message me.  Thank you, gracie

October 20, 2014 Posted by | bible study, Encouragement from the Word, The Word in our lives | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

“Even if he doesn’t…”

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Daniel 3:1-18

 

 King Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold, whose height was sixty cubits and its breadth six cubits. He set it up on the plain of Dura, in the province of Babylon.

 Then King Nebuchadnezzar sent to gather the satraps, the prefects, and the governors, the counselors, the treasurers, the justices, the magistrates, and all the officials of the provinces to come to the dedication of the image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up.

 Then the satraps, the prefects, and the governors, the counselors, the treasurers, the justices, the magistrates, and all the officials of the provinces gathered for the dedication of the image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up. And they stood before the image that Nebuchadnezzar had set up.

 And the herald proclaimed aloud, “You are commanded, O peoples, nations, and languages,

 that when you hear the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, you are to fall down and worship the golden image that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up.

And whoever does not fall down and worship shall immediately be cast into a burning fiery furnace.”

Therefore, as soon as all the peoples heard the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, all the peoples, nations, and languages fell down and worshiped the golden image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up.

Therefore at that time certain Chaldeans came forward and maliciously accused the Jews.

They declared to King Nebuchadnezzar, “O king, live forever!

 You, O king, have made a decree, that every man who hears the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, shall fall down and worship the golden image.

 And whoever does not fall down and worship shall be cast into a burning fiery furnace.

There are certain Jews whom you have appointed over the affairs of the province of Babylon: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. These men, O king, pay no attention to you; they do not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”

Then Nebuchadnezzar in furious rage commanded that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego be brought. So they brought these men before the king.

Nebuchadnezzar answered and said to them, “Is it true, O Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the golden image that I have set up?

Now if you are ready when you hear the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, to fall down and worship the image that I have made, well and good. But if you do not worship, you shall immediately be cast into a burning fiery furnace. And who is the god who will deliver you out of my hands?”

 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter.

 If this be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king.

 But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”

 Then Nebuchadnezzar was filled with fury, and the expression of his face was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. He ordered the furnace heated seven times more than it was usually heated.

 And he ordered some of the mighty men of his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace.

 Then these men were bound in their cloaks, their tunics, their hats, and their other garments, and they were thrown into the burning fiery furnace.

 Because the king’s order was urgent and the furnace overheated, the flame of the fire killed those men who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.

 And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, fell bound into the burning fiery furnace.

 Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished and rose up in haste. He declared to his counselors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the fire?” They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.”

 He answered and said, “But I see four men unbound, walking in the midst of the fire, and they are not hurt; and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods.”

 Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the door of the burning fiery furnace; he declared, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here!” Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego came out from the fire.

 And the satraps, the prefects, the governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together and saw that the fire had not had any power over the bodies of those men. The hair of their heads was not singed, their cloaks were not harmed, and no smell of fire had come upon them.

Nebuchadnezzar answered and said, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who has sent his angel and delivered his servants, who trusted in him, and set aside the king’s command, and yielded up their bodies rather than serve and worship any god except their own God.

 Therefore I make a decree: Any people, nation, or language that speaks anything against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego shall be torn limb from limb, and their houses laid in ruins, for there is no other god who is able to rescue in this way.”

Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the province of Babylon.  copied from Esword

 

“Even if he doesn’t…” There is so much packed into those words. One, who are we to dictate to God what he will or will not do? He reigns. That said, we rest in his love and his will as living flesh or living spirit. Can we stand with these against the persecution today? Can we be strong even to death? Have the people of God been equipped to withstand the evil that creeps in our land? There is a responsibility to achieve that equipping; it rests upon the leadership; there is also a responsibility to achieve that equipping; it rests with the individual. We have the Word of God readily available and are not dependent upon man to read it to us or explain it to us. We have the Holy Spirit who guides into all truth, sent to provide comfort and understanding. We have no excuse to not be strong, not be equipped. It is time to stop looking to the one hour a week to provide us with the knowledge, spiritual health and equipping for battle and the ability to stand firm. It is time to seek communion with those who desire the full Word of God and to set aside the time to listen to the Holy Spirit as we read and worship the Most High God. Nothing can do more than our alone time with God. Jesus and the prophets knew that. The men and women we read of in the scriptures knew that. Are we any different? Hear the call to worship in spirit and in truth, hear the call to study the Word of God, hear the call to seek his face in this time and place. Blessed be the name of the Lord.

 

“Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who has sent his angel and delivered his servants, who trusted in him, and set aside the king’s command, and yielded up their bodies rather than serve and worship any god except their own God.

 

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October 19, 2014 Posted by | bible study, Encouragement from the Word, The Word in our lives | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Who did what? Careful…

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Daniel 2:1-28

In the second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuchadnezzar had dreams; his spirit was troubled, and his sleep left him.

 Then the king commanded that the magicians, the enchanters, the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans be summoned to tell the king his dreams. So they came in and stood before the king.

 And the king said to them, “I had a dream, and my spirit is troubled to know the dream.”

 Then the Chaldeans said to the king in Aramaic, “O king, live forever! Tell your servants the dream, and we will show the interpretation.”

 The king answered and said to the Chaldeans, “The word from me is firm: if you do not make known to me the dream and its interpretation, you shall be torn limb from limb, and your houses shall be laid in ruins.

 But if you show the dream and its interpretation, you shall receive from me gifts and rewards and great honor. Therefore show me the dream and its interpretation.”

 They answered a second time and said, “Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will show its interpretation.”

 The king answered and said, “I know with certainty that you are trying to gain time, because you see that the word from me is firm—

 if you do not make the dream known to me, there is but one sentence for you. You have agreed to speak lying and corrupt words before me till the times change. Therefore tell me the dream, and I shall know that you can show me its interpretation.”

 The Chaldeans answered the king and said, “There is not a man on earth who can meet the king’s demand, for no great and powerful king has asked such a thing of any magician or enchanter or Chaldean.

 The thing that the king asks is difficult, and no one can show it to the king except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh.”

 Because of this the king was angry and very furious, and commanded that all the wise men of Babylon be destroyed.

So the decree went out, and the wise men were about to be killed; and they sought Daniel and his companions, to kill them.

 Then Daniel replied with prudence and discretion to Arioch, the captain of the king’s guard, who had gone out to kill the wise men of Babylon.

He declared to Arioch, the king’s captain, “Why is the decree of the king so urgent?” Then Arioch made the matter known to Daniel.

 And Daniel went in and requested the king to appoint him a time, that he might show the interpretation to the king.

 Then Daniel went to his house and made the matter known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions,

and told them to seek mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery, so that Daniel and his companions might not be destroyed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon.

 Then the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision of the night. Then Daniel blessed the God of heaven.

Daniel answered and said: “Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, to whom belong wisdom and might.

 He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding;

 he reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what is in the darkness, and the light dwells with him.

 To you, O God of my fathers, I give thanks and praise, for you have given me wisdom and might, and have now made known to me what we asked of you, for you have made known to us the king’s matter.”

 Therefore Daniel went in to Arioch, whom the king had appointed to destroy the wise men of Babylon. He went and said thus to him: “Do not destroy the wise men of Babylon; bring me in before the king, and I will show the king the interpretation.”

 Then Arioch brought in Daniel before the king in haste and said thus to him: “I have found among the exiles from Judah a man who will make known to the king the interpretation.”

The king declared to Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar, “Are you able to make known to me the dream that I have seen and its interpretation?”

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,

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. Your dream and the visions of your head as you lay in bed are these:

copied from Esword.

 

All glory is given to God all the time. We are given to know but the knowing is a gift, not something we have created. We cannot take credit, only give credit. When we are given knowledge we are responsible to share it. Again no credit to us for some will receive and some will not. What follows again is the will of God. We can observe the effect his word has on others and in ourselves but we cannot take credit for it. We don’t, in that place, “save” anyone. Our sharing gives opportunities for others to receive salvation and there is gratitude in that. We don’t bring healing to anyone. We are faithful to pray for one another and the gift of healing rests within some of us, but we did not heal. All credit must go to the Lord. We often hear “what we have done for the Lord”-statements. That is dangerous ground. Let God honor us but do not get caught in the web of ‘sounding our own horn.’ Christ warned us in that. Daniel was careful to recognize that he had a gift but it came from God and was at God’s will to activate. “Wisdom and power are His alone…”

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October 17, 2014 Posted by | bible study, Encouragement from the Word, The Word in our lives | , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Resolve…

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Daniel 1

In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it.

 And the Lord gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, with some of the vessels of the house of God. And he brought them to the land of Shinar, to the house of his god, and placed the vessels in the treasury of his god.

 Then the king commanded Ashpenaz, his chief eunuch, to bring some of the people of Israel, both of the royal family and of the nobility,

 youths without blemish, of good appearance and skillful in all wisdom, endowed with knowledge, understanding learning, and competent to stand in the king’s palace, and to teach them the literature and language of the Chaldeans.

 The king assigned them a daily portion of the food that the king ate, and of the wine that he drank. They were to be educated for three years, and at the end of that time they were to stand before the king.

 Among these were Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah of the tribe of Judah.

 And the chief of the eunuchs gave them names: Daniel he called Belteshazzar, Hananiah he called Shadrach, Mishael he called Meshach, and Azariah he called Abednego.

But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the king’s food, or with the wine that he drank. Therefore he asked the chief of the eunuchs to allow him not to defile himself.

 And God gave Daniel favor and compassion in the sight of the chief of the eunuchs,

and the chief of the eunuchs said to Daniel, “I fear my lord the king, who assigned your food and your drink; for why should he see that you were in worse condition than the youths who are of your own age? So you would endanger my head with the king.”

 Then Daniel said to the steward whom the chief of the eunuchs had assigned over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah,

“Test your servants for ten days; let us be given vegetables to eat and water to drink.

Then let our appearance and the appearance of the youths who eat the king’s food be observed by you, and deal with your servants according to what you see.”

So he listened to them in this matter, and tested them for ten days.

 At the end of ten days it was seen that they were better in appearance and fatter in flesh than all the youths who ate the king’s food.

 So the steward took away their food and the wine they were to drink, and gave them vegetables.

 As for these four youths, God gave them learning and skill in all literature and wisdom, and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.

 At the end of the time, when the king had commanded that they should be brought in, the chief of the eunuchs brought them in before Nebuchadnezzar.

And the king spoke with them, and among all of them none was found like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah. Therefore they stood before the king.

nd in every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters that were in all his kingdom.

And Daniel was there until the first year of King Cyrus.

 

The gift of wisdom and understanding was Daniel’s from the beginning and his resolve was to serve God. For that he was granted health and favor. Daniel’s resolve was to obey God rather than man, even when it looked as if God had turned away, and they were facing death. Can we stand even through judgment? Can we not falter because it seems as if God has turned us over to the enemy? This would be the state many believers find themselves in at this time in the Middle East. How strong is our belief in God and in what he says and does? Will our faith carry us through the dark times because we resolve not to disobey God’s commands? God was faithful to Daniel when Daniel was faithful to God in spite of his circumstances. And this was even in an area of apparent insignificance; the food he ate! Let our food not be the words of humanity but the words of God!

Disclaimer:  if ads are appearing anywhere on this page it is because they are placed there by WordPress not by me.  I have read the information on ads and in order to be ad free now, Word Press charges a fee.  I apologize for any inconvenience these ads may cause you and if they are inappropriate please message me.  Thank you, gracie

October 15, 2014 Posted by | bible study, Encouragement from the Word, The Word in our lives | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sing Praise…

 

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Psalm 30

A Psalm of David. A song at the dedication of the temple. I will extol you, O LORD, for you have drawn me up and have not let my foes rejoice over me.

 O LORD my God, I cried to you for help, and you have healed me.

 O LORD, you have brought up my soul from Sheol; you restored me to life from among those who go down to the pit.

 Sing praises to the LORD, O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name.

 For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.

 As for me, I said in my prosperity, “I shall never be moved.”

 By your favor, O LORD, you made my mountain stand strong; you hid your face; I was dismayed.

 To you, O LORD, I cry, and to the Lord I plead for mercy:

 “What profit is there in my death, if I go down to the pit? Will the dust praise you? Will it tell of your faithfulness?

 Hear, O LORD, and be merciful to me! O LORD, be my helper!”

 You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; you have loosed my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness,

 that my glory may sing your praise and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks to you forever!

 

How far have we sunk into the pit? God is able to pull us out. Depression? Wrong living? Burnt conscience? This psalmist was a man of war with all that alone entails. He was adulterous; killed the husband of the wife he committed adultery with. Yet he gives praise to Adonai, God, for pulling him out of hell. He was consumed with grief and depression over the loss of his child, but praised God for the joy that comes in the morning…

 

It does not matter how dark the night is, day dawns with light and the darkness must leave. It does not matter how dark our soul becomes; day dawns with light when the Son of God comes and rises within us. The darkness must leave. Give glory and praise to the one who brings the light to our souls, to our lives. Sing with the psalmist:

You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; you have loosed my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness,

that my glory may sing your praise and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks to you forever!

 Sing praises to the LORD, O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name.

 Disclaimer:  if ads are appearing anywhere on this page it is because they are placed there by WordPress not by me.  I have read the information on ads and in order to be ad free now, Word Press charges a fee.  I apologize for any inconvenience these ads may cause you and if they are inappropriate please message me.  Thank you, gracie

October 9, 2014 Posted by | bible study, Encouragement from the Word, The Word in our lives | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Voice of the Lord…

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans

Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome.

Psalm 29

 

A Psalm of David. Ascribe to the LORD, O heavenly beings, ascribe to the LORD glory and strength.

 Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name; worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness.

The voice of the LORD is over the waters; the God of glory thunders, the LORD, over many waters.

 The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is full of majesty.

 The voice of the LORD breaks the cedars; the LORD breaks the cedars of Lebanon.

 He makes Lebanon to skip like a calf, and Sirion like a young wild ox.

 The voice of the LORD flashes forth flames of fire.

 The voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness; the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.

 The voice of the LORD makes the deer give birth and strips the forests bare, and in his temple all cry, “Glory!”

 The LORD sits enthroned over the flood; the LORD sits enthroned as king forever.

 May the LORD give strength to his people! May the LORD bless his people with peace!

 

 

We wrap our whole being around the Lord God for he is worthy of it. He gave us life, he provides for that life all that it needs for the duration of life. For that alone all creation gives him praise. Can we join with the rest of creation and give him praise, honor and glory? Open our eyes that we may see your glory. Fill our heart with praise for you alone, O God.

 

“Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of Adonai.” – Jesus quoting the Old Testament – Matthew 4:4 and Deuteronomy 8:3 ” He humbled you, allowing you to become hungry, and then filled you with manna, which neither you nor your ancestors had ever know, to make you understand that a person does not live on food alone but on everything that comes from the mouth of Adonai.” There is a hunger for this bread in our land today. There is a remnant seeking for more of God than is being revealed in our churches. This hunger will be fed, God promises that. It is not the watered down gospel being presented today; it is the full Word of God as it has been handed down from above. The Word of God does not return empty, it accomplishes what it set out to do. It gives life, spiritual life that supersedes physical life and makes life here more abundant. Have we tasted this bread? Have we tasted this life? Once we have we will want no other.

The LORD sits enthroned over the flood; the LORD sits enthroned as king forever.

May the LORD give strength to his people! May the LORD bless his people with peace!

 

 

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October 8, 2014 Posted by | bible study, Encouragement from the Word, The Word in our lives | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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