This is Not a Time For Passivity
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Daniel was a man of God, living in a pagan culture.
Born in Jerusalem, he was educated in the finest Hebrew schools in that city. He was taken captive during the conquest of Babylon and King Nebuchadnezzar and selected to be among those who received special education and training because of his excellent character and intelligence.
The education and training he received in Babylon were steeped in the Persian culture, a mixture of polytheism and the monotheistic Zoroastrian religion.
Daniel and his three close friends embraced the education and training up to the point it would require compromise of their faithful walk with Almighty God and His authentic worship.
Although this brought challenges and even persecution, they remained faithful to the Living God and would not compromise their worship.
They grew in understanding and wisdom, outshining their peers in the education and training. They were recognized and honored with promotions in the Persian government, even after seasons of persecution they were honored and received promotion.
Daniel 6:10-11 reveals why Daniel consistently prospered in a humanistic pagan culture.
Did you see the hidden gem of Daniel’s consistent faithfulness and advancement even though he was in a humanistic pagan culture? He faithfully maintained his dedication to an upper room relationship with Almighty God.
Daniel was in a spiritual war for his faith and for his soul.
Make no mistake, Daniel was in a spiritual war for his faithful consistent walk with the Almighty God and for his soul. He faced continual opposition through cultural pressure and political correctness.
Although King Darius loved Daniel because of his integrity, character, and even admired his faith devotion to God, “these men” referenced in the above passage were out to destroy him.
Daniel was the leading man of three presidents in the Empire under King Darius. Under the three presidents were 120 princes or satraps.
The two presidents and 120 princes hated his faith in Almighty God. It did not fit their culture and they considered it dangerous to their king and to their kingdom.
They wrote legislation making it illegal for Daniel to practice his faith and persuaded King Darius to sign them into law. It was direct attack on Daniel and his dedication to the Living God. “These men” knew Daniel’s faithfulness and integrity.
They knew he would not compromise his walk with God.
Daniel’s faithfulness made room for God to do the impossible.
Knowing the new law had been signed, Daniel maintained his faithfulness and integrity. He developed a lifestyle of “upper room relationship” with Almighty God in his childhood.
He faithfully and consistently walked in that relationship into his senior years.
He was not going to allow cultural pressure, political correctness, or inappropriate laws cause him to compromise his walk and worship of God. He loved God with all his heart, soul, and strength. “These men” were watching him closely and saw him maintain his “upper room” vigilance.
Daniel was arrested, found guilty, and sentenced to death by the lions.
King Darius was grieved by his inattentiveness and manipulation by the two presidents and the princes. He wanted Daniel’s God to deliver him. Early the next morning he quickly made his way to the lion’s den to check on his favorite president.
Daniel 6:20 records him asking, “Daniel, servant of the Living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to deliver you from the lions?”
Can you imagine his relief when he heard Daniel’s voice and powerful response. “O king, live forever! My God has sent an angel and shut the lions’ mouths, so that they have not hurt me, because I was found innocent before Him; and also, O king, I have done no wrong before you” (Daniel 6:21 NKJV).
The king was overjoyed that Daniel’s God had miraculously spared him.
He commanded he be released and ordered the men who accused Daniel, and their families, be arrested and sentenced to death in the lion’s den. The king also wrote and signed a decree that was sent throughout the empire.
Do you understand you are in a war – a spiritual war?
I know it is not popular right now to refer to Christians as warriors. It is anathema to speak of them being in warfare. Arthur Mathews wrote about this in the Preface to his famous book, Born for Battle.
My burden relates to the flood of evil that the devil is pouring into the world and, at the same time, the passivity of many of God’s saints as they view the state of affairs and their ignorance of the part God expects them to play in His warfare against Satan… Surely this is not the time of God’s soldiers to withdraw into passivity, to put reality out of their minds…(Overseas Missionary Fellowship, 1978, pp. 9, 10)
The Holy Scriptures are replete with references to the spiritual warfare of the child of God and our call to battle. Genesis 1:28 records God blessing Adam and Eve immediately after He created them.
“Subdue it” and “have dominion” are military terms. God was calling His children, made in His image, to spiritual war from the very beginning.
Revelation 19:11-20:10 records Jesus after the Marriage Supper of the Lamb, clothed in royal garments, mounting a white stallion, and all the saints also mounted on horses following Him, making the journey from the third heaven to Jerusalem.
They will encounter and defeat the Beast and the False Prophet with the armies of the nations.
The Beast and False Prophet will be thrown into the Lake of Fire and Jesus Christ will set up His throne earth for one thousand years. Lucifer and the demonic forces are imprisoned during these years.
At the end of one thousand years, Lucifer and demons are released from prison, defeated in battle by Jesus Christ, and thrown into the Lake of Fire.
There is a consistent reference in the Holy Bible to the war between the Kingdom of God and the kingdom of Satan; the Kingdom of Light and the kingdom of darkness; the Kingdom of Love and the kingdom of hate; the Kingdom of Righteousness and the kingdom of evil and wickedness.
The church was born for battle.
The first time Jesus taught the disciples about His church, He said,
The Church was born for spiritual warfare against the powers of darkness. It is not a war of rockets, bombs, canons, and bullets but of spiritual strongholds, ideologies, reasoning, philosophies, and moral values.
It is a war against demonic forces who seek to control the thinking reasoning, and world view of men and women in a strategy to establish a culture with open behavior of darkness.
It is a war for the eternal souls of men, women, boys, and girls. It is war for your soul and the souls of your family.
Jesus said to his disciples, “Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy; and nothing shall by any means hurt you” (Luke 10:19 NKJV).
When Jesus gave the great commission to the church He said, “And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover” (Mark 16:17-18 NKJV).
Clearly, Jesus Christ was commissioning His church for spiritual war against the kingdom of darkness. He gave the church authority and the power to plunder the enemy and release men, women, boys, and girls from captivity in the strongholds of demonic forces.
In our next blog we will discover more about our current spiritual war and the mighty weapons Jesus Christ has given His church to fight the war.
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