Daniel Revealed and Interpreted the King's Dream (Daniel 2:31-45)
1. In Hebrews 11:33, Daniel's faith is mentioned in connection with the mouths of lions being shut (Daniel 6). 2. In our lesson we are examining the occasion when Daniel demonstrated his faith by revealing and interpreting King Nebuchadnezzar's dream. 3. We need to study this information carefully because it contains an important prophecy about the establishment of God's kingdom. 4. Before we concentrate on the dream and its interpretation, let us consider some . . .
I. BACKGROUND INFORMATION
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 troubled him. F. (2:2-11) The king commanded his wise men to reveal his dream. G. (2:12-13) 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. (2:14-18) Daniel requested permission to talk with the king. I. (2:19) The information was revealed to Daniel in a vision. J. (2:20-24) Daniel blessed and thanked God. K. (2:25-30) Daniel gave God credit for revealing secret information relating to future events.
II. (2:31-35) DANIEL FIRST REVEALED THE DREAM
A. (vs.31-33) The dream was of a great image with its sections made of different materials -- the head was of gold, the breast and arms were of silver, the belly and thighs were of brass, and the legs and feet were of iron and clay. B. (vs.34-35) The dream also included a great stone -- it "was cut out without hands," it broke the image to pieces, it "became a great mountain," and it "filled the whole earth." C. After revealing the dream to the king, . . .
III. (2:36-45) DANIEL INTERPRETED THE DREAM
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, but 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 -- 8:20-21]. 4. (vs.40-43) The legs and feet of iron and clay represented a fourth kingdom [Rome -- ch.7]. 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.
1. Many years later, John began his work by calling upon people to repent because the kingdom of heaven was "at hand" (Matthew 3:1-2). 2. Notice who was ruling when John began his work (Luke 3:1-2). 3. This was about 3 years before God's kingdom was established. 4. We learn from 1 Corinthians 15:24 what will happen to the kingdom when the Lord returns. 5. Have you become a member of the Lord's everlasting kingdom?