Suggested Reading: Daniel 2
Have you ever been faced with a situation that seemed impossible? Recovery from an addiction? Financial mess with no end in sight? A job with a boss who has made life miserable? Family problems that break your heart? Health problems that multiply and pile up? These and a thousand other ‘impossible‘ situations present a strong challenge to our faith.
When we are faced with the impossible we need to turn our faith to God, who does not stagger at the impossible situation in which we find ourselves.
Young Daniel at age 15 was taken 900 miles from his home and now is in King Nebuchadnezzar’s service. He had an invincible faith, and also faith that seemed to thrive in the impossible. In Daniel chapter 2 he is faced with an impossible situation.
The King has had a disturbing dream. He has assembled his ‘wise men’ with an impossible demand. They are to tell him what his dream was, and then interpret it. Daniel approached this request with three great qualities that helped him overcome the odds:
*He didn’t panic. (Daniel 2:14-16) He approached the King with wisdom and tact. Tact is not flattery, it is wisdom in a delicate situation. The Apostle Paul encouraged us to have this approach to others in our lives.
Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone. ~Colossians 4:6
Daniel remained confident though he did not know the answer to the situation. He didn’t panic!
*Pray! (Daniel 2:17-18) The mercies of the ‘God of heaven’. This expression is only found in the books of the captivity (Ezra, Nehemiah and Daniel). After the departure of the glory of God from Jerusalem in the temple, he is now addressed as the ‘God of heaven.’
All prayer must rest upon His mercy. To pray today in Jesus’ name means that we must come to God, not on our merit, but on His merit, looking to Him for mercy. ~J. Vernon McGee
*Praise! (Daniel 2:19-23) Daniel gave all credit where it belonged (vs. 27-28), he didn’t think he was special – just faithful.
Because he approached this impossible situation this way, God enabled him to recite the dream and interpret the dream.
What Do We Learn About God from this story?
*God listens when we pray.
“Prayer is not getting man’s will done in heaven, but getting God’s will done on earth. It is not overcoming God’s reluctance but laying hold of God’s willingness.” ~Richard C. Trench
*God answers prayer in light of His will. (vs. 29-30) God wanted Nebuchadnezzar to know what was going to happen. Daniel makes it clear that he himself deserves no credit, that God in heaven has revealed the dream, that God was prompted to reveal the dream to spare the lives of the wise men as well as to satisfy the curiosity of Nebuchadnezzar.
*God is tending to His plan for history. (vs 31-45) The kingdoms yet to come are not a mystery to God. God’s ultimate plan is an eternal kingdom. The statue of Nebuchadnezzars dream is a prophetic timeline of history.
Gold Head – Babylon – 626-539 BC
Silver chest/arms – Medo-Persian – 539-331 BC
Bronze Belly/thighs – Greece – 331-63 BC (Alexander the Great)
Iron Legs – Roman Empire – 63 BC – 476 AD
Iron/Clay Feet – Rome Divided
The Stone that crushes the last Kingdom is Christ!
Matthew 16:15; 1 Corinthians 10:3-4; 1 Peter 2:7-9
Because he recited and interpred the dream, Daniel is placed in a very high position, along with his three friends. It is from this exalted position that they will face their biggest trial yet. While everyone else is bowing down to an idol, they are conspicuously not.
In this impossible situation Daniel had faith in God, who specializes in impossibilities! Know that God is acting within His will to accomplish His plan for mankind. When you are faced with your impossible situation, don’t panic. Pray and praise God. He is near.