God’s Spoken Word
Today I am grateful that I was brought to a place where I understand what it means to venerate, revere, fear the LORD. I think that I live in the world and know who He is, but in the distraction of my life, I forget, or could I humbly say, disregard His omnipotence. I shudder and cower at the thought that those words are true for my heart. Bowing at His Holy feet for forgiveness, brings to mind a concept I never fully understood, but I believe I do now, to Fear the Lord.
Based on the book of Daniel, King Nebuchadnezzar was the greatest ruler that had ever ruled. He had a kingdom of Gold where all the forthcoming kingdoms were reflected in lesser metals or in clay. He lived in prideful luxury over what he considered his great accomplishment. His power came at a costly prideful price. God made it known through a dream that his kingdom would be crushed and he would be reduced to one of the beasts of the field. One day as he strolled in his palace living in the lap of true luxury God spoke. His grandiose delusion that he was like god or perhaps a god himself was snuffed out with a word. “While the words were still in the king's mouth (the words from his mouth were glorifying his own majesty), there fell a voice from heaven, “O King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is spoken: The kingdom has departed from you, and you shall be driven from among men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. And you shall be made to eat grass like an ox, and seven periods of time shall pass over you, until you know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will.” Immediately the word was fulfilled against Nebuchadnezzar.” Daniel 4:31-32. The italics are mine. His mind was removed and he was made like an ox, IMMEDIATELY WITH JUST A SPOKEN WORD. A true display of Gods sovereign omnipotence.
God Actions are Just
After King Nebuchadnezzar’s ruling came his son, King Belshazzar. He was also haughty and ignored the Lords decrees and majesty. One day when he was celebrating in revelry he pushed the Lord too far. He brought out the vessels of gold and silver that Nebuchadnezzar has taken from the Jewish temple, the house of God in Jerusalem, and filled them with wine and drank from them. It feels as though he stole precious heirlooms and discarded them with carelessness at an all night party. Who can blame the Lord for His anger. His outright blasphemy was his last act of kingship. “Immediately the fingers of a human hand appeared and wrote on the plaster of the wall of the king's palace, opposite the lamp stand. And the king saw the hand as it wrote. Then the king's color changed, and his thoughts alarmed him; his limbs gave way, and his knees knocked together.” Daniel 5:5. He was terrified. Can you blame him. Imagine if before you fingers appeared and wrote foreign words on your kitchen wall. Once again after his enchanters, Chaldeans and astrologers failed Daniel was brought in. The king offered him robes and jewels for his interpretation, but Daniel refused the gifts of debauchery and suggested he give them to someone else. He interpreted the inscription of MENE, MENE, TEKEL and PERES. “Mene, God has numbered the days of your kingdom and brought it to an end; Tekel, you have been weighed in the balances and found wanting; Peres, your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians.” Daniel 5:26.
What I found immediately striking was that the King didn’t really acknowledge the words. He seems to celebrate and clothe Daniel with purple and chains of gold and announced that he would be the third ruler in the kingdom. His weakness and trembling had apparently disappeared now that some interpretation was given. Not much else is said about King Belshazzar, other than Gods forecast came true that night and he was killed. GOD FOLLOWS THROUGH WITH WHAT HE SAYS, SO HEED HIS CALLING.
God as Parent
I have read this story before, but never has the Lord brought to my attention the greatness of His power. How He chooses who He gives grace to and who He snuffs out with a single act. King Nebuchadnezzar was given grace. He was given great power and authority for many years, and he was humbled by his mind being removed from him and being made to live like an animal for 7 years. Then at the end of his 7 years he was transformed and he revered the Lord. The shocking part is the immediacy of the Lords words. He spoke and Nebuchadnezzar was driven from his palace. With King Belshazzar he wasn’t given a second chance. He was killed the day he was told his days were numbered.
The Lord is loving and forgiving, but He is just, sovereign, omnipotent and intentional. He wants all of us as His children forever. So to fear Him means we follow and obey Him, which means we can receive forgiveness, which means He gets to have us and we get to have Him for eternity. So fearing the Lord allows a real relationship with Him. For us as parents we can understand this loving act. We hope our children have a bit of fear of the wrath of mom and dad causing them to obey. Disobedience equals consequences. King Nebuchadnezzar and King Belshazzar are clear examples of strict parental consequences. I pray this understanding can be embedded in all our minds and heart as we make choices every day. That we make choices that God chooses for us. From the words of Beth Moore, I pray for God “to perform miracles over your mind and to utterly invade your subconscious.” I pray this as a prayer for my mind and yours.
It is wise to fear Him and to acknowledge His ways. “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom.” Psalm 111:10. “Then he charged them saying, “Thus you shall do in the fear of the LORD, faithfully and wholeheartedly.” 2 Chronicles 19:9. “The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear Him, and rescues them.” Psalm 34:7. “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.” Proverbs 1:7. “You shall follow the LORD your God and fear Him; and you shall keep His commandments, listen to His voice, serve Him, and cling to Him.” Deuteronomy 13:4.
I love Jesus. I think my two daughters can change the world. I think you can too.
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