In It Not Of It - Part 5


Wake Up Call

The Delusion
The Dream
The Doubling of Grace

Engel’s Scale 

Engel's Scale

Daniel calls Nebuchadnezzar to repentance, speaking the Word of the Lord

The God Test Community Groups and on-Line training

Nebuchadnezzar begins to testify to others

as in the “I Am Second” Video testimonies 

The Delusion

Daniel 4:1-9 
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. 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.

What was Nebuchadnezzar's worldview that would be shattered?

He's invincible.  He is self-made - all of the vastness of his kingdom is the work of his own power, intelligence, acumen, leadership and skill.  He is favored of Deity.

What are the world-views of those who surround you - the things in which they trust?

Their youth.  Their beauty.  Their economic status or earning power.  Their intelligence and sense of progress or enlightenment.  They're invincible. I'll be young and able to live free forever.  Today is all that matters (#YOLO perverted).

“Properly understood, Christianity is by no means the opiate of the people.  It’s more like the smelling salts.”

-Timothy Keller

The Dream

Daniel 4:19-27 
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.”

God humbles to:

  1. Grab our attention

  2. Show our limitations

  3. Demonstrate His sovereignty and might 

  4. Give you compassion for others who are like yourself but fully aware of their own weakness as they are in need or in pain

  5. To open our eyes to REALITY and ultimately to usher you into a life of grace.  Through circumstances, we are brought to the cross of Jesus Christ that we might be reoriented in regards to that in which we trust.  

Nebuchadnezzar hadn't listened to the subtler signs (like Pharoah in Egypt). 

Proverbs 29:19 
By mere words a servant is not disciplined, for though he understands, he will not respond.

Nebuchadnezzar's dip into senility was God's megaphone.

“Pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our consciences, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”

C.S. Lewis

Our lesson: We want to have sensitive feet on the beach.  Don't wait to be humbled.

Our role as translator

Daniel was used as the translator to interpret Nebuchadnezzar's circumstances as his worldview began to crumble (we must be sensitive about this as not to turn into Job's friends).  

Be ready when the House of Cards crumbles.

Before you can interpret someone else's worldview, you must have a realistic assessment of your own.  What frames the way that you live?  Is it in accordance with God's priority and design?

Matthew 7:1-5

II Corinthians 13:5-10

The Doubling of Grace

Daniel 4:28-37 
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.

Second City Church - In It Not Of It - Pastor Rollan Fisher 2018