1.The book of Daniel: a.tells about a number of events that occurred while the Jews from the southern kingdom were in captivity b.tells about a number of world empires that would rise to power c.records a number of prophecies that were made about God's kingdom. 2.In our lesson we are concentrating on a dream of Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon. 3.His dream was actually a prophecy concerning the establishment of God's kingdom. 4.Let us first consider some . . .
A.(1:1-2) Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, took control of Jerusalem. B.(1:3-5) Certain young Jewish people were taken and trained to serve in the king's palace. C.(1:6-7) Daniel was among those taken. D.(1:17) "Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams." E.(2:1) Nebuchadnezzar had a dream that he could not recall. F.The king commanded his wise men to reveal his dream. G.When they could not reveal the dream, Nebuchadnezzar became angry and issued a command for all the wise men to be put to death [this included Daniel and his friends]. H.Daniel requested permission to talk with the king. I.(2:19) The information was revealed to Daniel in a vision. J.(2:25-28) Daniel gave God credit for revealing secret information relating to future events.
A.(vs.31-33) The dream was of a great image with its various sections made of different materials. 1.The head was of gold. 2.The breast and arms were of silver. 3.The belly and thighs were of brass. 4.The legs and feet were of iron and clay. B.(vs.34-35) The dream also included a great stone. 1.It "was cut out without hands." 2.It broke the image to pieces. 3.It "became a great mountain." 4.It "filled the whole earth."
A.(vs.36-43) The different sections of the image represented different kingdoms. 1.(vs.37-38) The head of gold represented Babylon, ruled at that time by Nebuchadnezzar. 2.(vs.39a) The breast and arms of silver represented a kingdom that would rise to power; however, it would be inferior to Babylon -- Medes and Persians (5:28). 3.(vs.39b) The belly and thighs of brass represented a third kingdom -- Greece (10:20). 4.(vs.40-43) The legs and feet of iron and clay represented a fourth kingdom -- Rome. B.(vs.44-45) The great stone represented God's kingdom. 1.(vs.44) God would set up His kingdom during the time when the kings of the fourth kingdom ruled. 2.God's kingdom would break and consume all other kingdoms. 3.God's kingdom will never be destroyed -- it will stand forever. C.(Luke 3:1-2) Notice who was ruling when John began his work about 3 years before God's kingdom was established.
1.The kingdoms of men rise, and the kingdoms of men fall. 2.However, God's kingdom will never end. a.It was established when the time was right according to God's time schedule. b.It will stand forever. 3.(1 Corinthians 15:24) We learn what will happen to the Lord's kingdom when He returns. 4.Are you a member of God's everlasting kingdom?