Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"
There is a fascinating story in Daniel 2 which tells how the intelligentsia of ancient Babylon had a modern counterfeit idea of God, held today by millions.
King Nebuchadnezzar understood enough to know that there is somewhere in the universe a true God. He had blindly trusted the religious leaders of his empire, assuming they were in touch with whoever this "God" is. The true God of heaven had given him what we now know was an important prophetic dream. But God also gave the king temporary amnesia so that events could disillusion him. He correctly decided that if the religious leaders of his empire were indeed in touch with "God," whoever He was, they could learn from Him the details of his prophetic vision and explain it.
Good thinking! But they were stumped. The king was in distress; it seemed that the fate of the world depended on his understanding this strange divine revelation (in a way, it did!). He demanded that they earn their salary by demonstrating their "superior" wisdom. Impossible, they said; no one on earth could do what you want "except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh" (2:11).
And there lies the root of all religious falsehood, even some so-called "Christian." The Bible says there are "many false prophets" today, as there were in Babylon (Matt. 24:11). Their fundamental idea? The same as the Chaldeans--it "does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh, ... and this is the spirit of the Antichrist" (1 John 4:1, 2).
The Babylonians believed there is a "God," but not one who has taken upon Himself our "flesh," "the likeness of sinful flesh," who has "partaken" of the same fallen "flesh and blood" that all we "children" of the fallen Adam by nature possess. In that same "flesh" that we have, Christ "condemned sin" so that "the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled" in all who will simply have "the faith of Jesus" (see Rom. 8:3, 4; Heb. 2:14-17; Rev. 14:12).
Daniel gave the king Good News. Let's believe it!
--Robert J. Wieland
From the "Dial Daily Bread" Archive: October 8, 2004.
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