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Lesson # Dan. 2:1-3
Study Material - Dan. 2:1-3
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1 Now in the second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuchadnezzar had dreams; and his spirit was troubled and his sleep left him. 2 Then the king gave orders to call in the magicians, the conjurers, the sorcerers and the Chaldeans, to tell the king his dreams. So they came in and stood before the king. 3 And the king said to them, 'I had a dream, and my spirit is anxious to understand the dream.'
Nebuchadnezzar initially shared rule with his father. Most interpret this passage as being the second year of his own reign, and following the termination of the shared reign. Daniel had three years of training and was then appointed to his employment position. It seems reasonable and consistent that these events in chapter 2 followed that training.
Anyway, Nebuchadnezzar had a dream which disturbed him. He couldn't sleep. The dream was repetitious and haunted him for some time. Actually he had several dreams with various parts contained within each separate dream. He dreamed dreams, 'chalam', 'chalowm', he was caused to dream several dreams, to recall previously forgotten dreams.
God brought this series of dreams into Nebuchadnezzar's mind in order to establish Daniel within the kingdom, but more than that, to establish Daniel as a messenger from God . When God promotes, He does so in such a way as to make it very clear that this promotion is directly from God and from no other source.
Nebuchadnezzar on the other hand was a king over a very powerful nation. He had wealth and power, and guards on every side, yet he was not protected from within his own soul. Man is often lulled into a false sense of security when he is successful and certainly to the extreme that Nebuchadnezzar was successful. But the world's success is no fortress against God and life in general. Generations come and go and we know that Nebuchadnezzar has been long since gone for quite a few centuries now, but then he was very up on himself and in his success.
Now comes a test of his confidence and even a test of the self control over himself. God can take the very simple and, with it, confuse and humble any person. Nebuchadnezzar had a dream, his own dream. The thoughts were inside his own head, yet he did not know their meaning. His several dreams were somehow connected but Nebuchadnezzar did not know what that connection was. Here is the most powerful leader in this time in history and he is confused by his own dream. A dream which will lead to the disclosure, from the human viewpoint, of future history. In chapter seven we will see Gods view of history.
Nebuchadnezzar had another problem. He could not remember the dream, therefore he could not tell anyone the dream in order to get its interpretation. So this was even more disturbing to him. He had dreamed dreams, forgotten them, knew that they were important, but could not tell anyone what those dreams were. This sets the stage for Daniel. No man can look into the soul of another and see the thoughts let alone the dreams that one had the night before or even for several nights. Only God, the one true God would be able to perform such a task - to retrieve the dream, reveal its details, and then give the meaning of it.
Nebuchadnezzar went to his counsels. He asked them to reveal the dream as well as its meaning, and of course they could not. Even the simple things such as a dream can stumble mankind. Man might think himself very high and mighty in his power, position, knowledge, technology and so forth, but a simple thing as a dream can confuse and defeat even the most powerful of world leaders. Mans wisdom is limited and is eventually stopped from proceeding further, until some sort of divine revelation is made.
In all things, man is dependent on God. In trying to interpret life, as this dream will become a history revealed sort of dream, man cannot look to his own understanding. Man has no insight into the future, even a few minutes into the future let alone centuries into the future, and in detail. God knows the future because he decreed history. In eternity past (see the chart on the divine decrees on the index page) God evaluated all possible combinations of history and its outcome. God creates human life and in so doing determines just when in history you will live. He knows all the decisions you will make, all the thoughts you will have, all the actions you will take. These combined with those of every other person in history, gives God a clear picture of what will happen and when. He selected the best possible course of history for each one of us and in eternity past decided on the current course of history. You live in this current time for a reason. It is the best possible time for you to live in order to maximize your spiritual life. To live in any other time in history would not be to your advantage.
We cannot see into the future, but we do not need to be able to see there when we rely on God in our lives. Nebuchadnezzar did not rely on God, but God would make His presence known soon enough through Daniel. Nebuchadnezzar did not place himself in history, nor attain his position on his own effort. God placed him there. Nebuchadnezzar not only forgot his own dream, but he forgot from where he had come in life. And more important he forgot who was responsible for providing all that he had. God is the supplier of all things. To know and understand this gives us insight into life. To ignore God means confusion and even such a simple thing as a dream can be terrifying to ones life.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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