Daily Word

Daniel 4

Read Daniel 4 – Another dream – It seems as if King Neb is sharing this in hindsight. In verses :2-3 he is praising God and thanking him for all the Lord performed in him… He said he told the dream to his wise men and they could not explain it; then he told Daniel… :4-8

King Neb called him Daniel, his Hebrew name and not Belteshazzar, his Babylonian name in verse :8. This seems to indicate he was no longer trying to convert Daniel to his Babylonian gods, Nebu and Marduk.

Anyway, he tells Daniel a crazy dream and Daniel’s interpretation is alarming. Daniel advises the king to stop sinning, break from his wicked past and be merciful to the poor… but that does not happen, and the dream is fulfilled. King Neb lives like an animal for seven periods. Did you know this is an actual psychological condition called “boanthropy”, when one believes themselves to be a cow or an ox?

“After this time had passed, I, Nebuchadnezzar, looked up to heaven. My sanity returned, and I praised and worshiped the Most High and honored the one who lives forever.” :34

May this comfort each of us. No matter the slip or fall, God can restore the one who humbly seeks Him. Note King Neb’s praises through the end of the chapter, by the grace of God Most High, he was restored in full, giving all glory and honor to God.

Hallelujah! Our Heavenly Father can do great things with a surrendered heart. He can restore; He can redeem. He can turn one’s worst years into one’s greatest testimony! Hallelujah and amen.

Daily Word

Daniel 2 – Part 2

Read Daniel 2:29-49 – But because God wants you to understand… That’s from :30 “And it is not because I am wiser than anyone else that I know the secret of your dream, but because God wants you to understand what was in your heart.” This was a unique situation of course, but God is always reaching out in unique and personal ways to reach those who don’t know him, and he often uses simple folks like you and me – all glory to God!

God gives Daniel perfect knowledge of the king’s dream, as well as its interpretation. He dreamt of a statue that was a frightening sight, with a head of gold, chest and arms of silver, belly and thighs of bronze, legs of iron, and feet a combination of iron and clay. Picture it. And as the king watched a rock was cut from a mountain, but not by human hands…. reread :31-35 and try to imagine what this could be.

Daniel explained that the different metals and clay represented different kingdoms. Commentators explain this to be Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome, with each kingdom progressively inferior to King Nebuchadnezzar’s in terms of the centralized power he held, yet each is progressively larger and longer lasting. (I used the David Guzik commentary from the Blueletterbible app)

But the dream included details not yet fulfilled, namely the ten kingdoms of clay and iron, represented by the toes, and the rock that causes the entire statue to crumble and becomes a great mountain that covers the whole earth… pointing to Jesus, our cornerstone, and the new heaven and new earth spoken of in Isaiah 65:17, 66:22, Matthew 13:52, Revelations 3:12, 21:1-2… Who’s ready for extra credit???

The king’s reaction indicates he was overwhelmed by the reality of Daniel’s God. He changed his entire kingdom and appointed Daniel to a high position, his friends too.

Beloved, here you have history and future. Could we be the generation that sees this ultimate fulfillment? I pray you take comfort as the world seems more and more out of control that there is a God in Heaven who loves you and has every detail worked out. He knows the beginning to the end; He is the Alpha and Omega. The best (for believers in Jesus Christ) is yet to come!

Daily Word

Daniel 2, part 1

Read Daniel 2:1-28 – God is in control. We find suspense, certain death, a vision and rescue all in Chapter 2. So, King Nebuchadnezzar has a dream he wants interpreted by his panel of experts, yet he refuses to tell them what the dream was. When no one can do it he orders the death of all wise men, which includes Daniel, Shadrack, Meshach and Abednego.

“When Arioch, the commander of the king’s guard, came to kill them, Daniel handled the situation with wisdom and discretion.” :14 When everyone else is focused on the problem, Daniel remains focused on the LORD, and the truth that nothing is impossible for God.

Arioch told him and Daniel went directly to the king to ask for an opportunity to interpret the dream. It was granted. Daniel did not handle the situation alone, but solicited the prayers of his friends… “For where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there with them.” Matthew 18:20

Beloved, this was an impossible situation, but for God. You will face impossible things in life too. I pray you also handle them with wisdom and discretion, get the facts, and summon a few friends to pray with you.

In verses :19-23, we see the LORD does give Daniel the vision and Daniel gives God all the glory! Then he returns to Arioch who quickly takes Daniel to the king (:24-25). The fact that he did it quickly indicates he knew the king’s order was wrong. If Daniel would have failed, it most likely would have meant his life as well, yet he risked it for the hope of a solution. Hope can make you brave.

Daniel is clear with the king, telling him he asked for something no man could reveal, but there is a God in heaven who could and did. Daniel tells the king what he dreamt and what it means, again giving all glory to God.

This dream was so huge, we will talk about it tomorrow. God bless you.

Daily Word

Matthew 2

Read Matthew 2 – Do you know the Holy Spirit?  Are you able to discern his voice over the chatter of life?   Will you read our chapter with an eye for all the ways he intervened in the lives of Joseph, and the Magi?  Will you consider the priests and scribes who knew Scripture and the prophecies concerning Messiah, yet did nothing! They did not seek to find Messiah, rejoice or worship. They had knowledge, but no love. 

Joseph really stands out as a true man under God and spiritual leader of his household.   It is him the angel of the Lord addresses to flee to Egypt, then return, but to Nazareth and not Judea. 

Men, will you pray for deeper sensitivity to the Holy Spirits lead for you and the family God has entrusted to you? Women, will you pray for your men, spouse, father, son, brother and anyone else the Lord puts on your heart to know and pursue Jesus? 

Beloved, we are living in an age where spiritual wisdom and discernment are more important than ever.   Matthew 2 has so much to wake us up to! 

Daily Word

Genesis 41

Read Genesis 41 – One call can change everything.  One moment can stop time and your life will forever be measured as before and after. 

It is roughly the 13th year after Joseph’s life went from before, living as the happy younger brother in his fathers house… to after, after being thrown in a well, after slavery, after false accusations, after imprisonment.  And today we find Joseph getting another call. 

Pharaoh has a dream he just can’t let go of.  He shares it with all of the magicians and wise men of Egypt, and none can interpret the dream.  Now, remember the cup-bearer, he would have been close by as Pharaoh was sharing his dream with his advisors.  Starting in :9 he speaks up, telling Pharaoh about this young Hebrew man he met in prison.  Verse :14 tells us, “Pharaoh sent for Joseph at once, and he was quickly brought up from the prison.  After he shaved and changed his clothes, he went in and stood before Pharaoh.” 

Beloved, you have had a call, your life is before Salvation and after.  And you will get another, when you are all cleaned up, clothed in Jesus, standing before God in heaven. 

But, back to Joseph.  When Pharaoh tells Joseph why he summoned him, Joseph responds just as he did before, “It is beyond my power to do this,” Joseph replied, “But God can tell you what it means and set you at ease.” :16 I CAN’T, BUT GOD CAN. Hold onto that, Beloved. 

The dream is clarified and Joseph advises placing an intelligent, wise man in charge of the entire land of Egypt, and to collect and store 1/5th of all the crops in the abundant years.  Pharaoh consults his advisors, :38, and they all agree that Joseph is the man for the job.  On the spot, Joseph is elevated from prisoner to the highest ranking official in all of Egypt, just under Pharaoh himself. 

Beloved, live ready.  One never knows when the call will come that changes everything.

Daily Word

Genesis 40

Read Genesis 40 – Joseph and dreams – If you recall, all of Joseph’s troubles began when he shared his dreams with his brothers (Genesis 37).  One would think he would doubt the dream interpretation, considering the way that one is playing out.  Indeed, from a dream about the sun moon and eleven stars bowing down to him to the reality of abandonment, slavery, and imprisonment one would think Joseph would doubt a lot of things.  But there is zero evidence of that anywhere in his life. 

Our chapter begins with Pharaoh’s chief cup-bearer and chief baker joining Joseph in prison.  Scripture says, “When Joseph saw them the next morning, he noticed that they both looked upset.” :6 Beloved, do you see his heart?  Joseph reflects a heart of compassion and tenderness, not bitter self-absorption. 

He asks why they look so worried, and they say it is because they both had dreams that no one could interpret.  Without hesitation, Joseph said to them, “Do not interpretations belong to God?  Please tell them to me.” :8  Joseph does not say that he can interpret, but that it belongs to God… that is the kind of relationship he has with the Father… It gives us a peek at just HOW Joseph could endure a life of trials without despair because he walked so closely with the LORD. 

Beloved, when ugly emotions rear their head in your heart, turn to Jesus.  “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all our anxieties on him, because he cares for you.”  1 Peter 5:6-7 

Joseph gives the interpretations and they play out in three days exactly as he described.  All he asked for in return was that he be remembered (:14) but our chapter closes with, “Pharaoh’s chief cup-bearer, however, forgot all about Joseph, never giving him another thought.” :23  Yet another betrayal, still, all we see is a steadfast life.  God is preparing Joseph for great things and his faith does not waiver. 

Beloved, trust the Lord with all your heart.  When things get hard, remember Joseph, and may his blessed hope be yours too.

Daily Word

Genesis 37

Read Genesis 37 – Beloved, you are seen; you are precious and useful to God; the biggest challenges of your life are molding and shaping you for divine purposes.  You are loved.  May you learn and relearn all this and more from Joseph. 

We begin when Joseph is 17 and like most of us at that age, he wants to fit in.  He is the 11th son to his father, Jacob, and first born to his mother, Rachel. He is his father’s favorite, and his brothers hated him for that.  :1-4

He has a dream one night, and tells his brothers about it.  In the dream, they bow down to him.  You can imagine how well this goes over. 

One day, Joseph is coming out to where the brothers are working and they conspire to kill him. Then changed their mind to throw him down an empty well because they did not want his blood on their hands.  Then they rethink that plan and sell him into slavery to a passing caravan.  :18-28  They bring back false evidence to make their father believe he has been eaten by wild animals… in other words, his situation is humanly hopeless.  No one is going to come looking for him.  But notice how God’s hand of protection was over him.  The Lord did not allow his brothers to kill him.  The Lord did not allow him to be harmed by the slave traders and the Lord planted Joseph in the service to Potiphar, the captain of the guard for Pharaoh.  There’s much more to his story, but for today, Beloved, whatever you’ve faced in life, especially the hard parts, will you pray to see it through God’s lense?🌈🧥💤💖☝️🙏😍

Daily Word

Genesis 28

Read Genesis 28 – Where to start?  There is so much at play in our chapter. 

We begin where Rebekah’s complaint in 27:46 began, and Isaac summoned Jacob, instructing him to not marry a Canaanite woman, but to go to Uncle Laban’s house and marry one of his daughters.  Isaac gave Jacob one more blessing and sent him away. 

Esau knew his parents did not like the local women so he made an outward gesture to please them by traveling to Uncle Ishmael’s house and marrying his daughter, Mahalath.  She is his 3rd wife, Judith and Basemath are his Hittite wives who made life miserable for Isaac and Rebekah (26;34-35).

Beloved, this is partial obedience.  This is what it looks like to God when a person decides for themselves what would please Him, without actually submitting to the LORD in prayer nor having any true repentance.  This is like the spouse who is faithful most of the time, or the addict who is sometimes sober.

Jacob set up camp for the night, resting his head on a stone, and has a vivid dream. In it, the LORD confirms the blessing of Abraham and promises:  “What’s more, I am with you , and I will protect you wherever you go.  One day I will bring you back to this land.  I will not leave you until I have finished giving you everything I have promised you.” :15  WOW!  Jacob woke up, memorialized the stone, pouring olive oil over it, and renamed the place Bethel (house of God). 

Beloved, pour over Jacob’s dream in verses :12-15.  Ask God to grow your faith; stand before Him in your hard places and meditate on what He has to say to you.🙇‍♀️🙏🪜🙌🙇