(1) - Daniel 1:1;
(A) - Jeremiah 25:1 places this captivity in the fourth year of Jehoiakim and Daniel places it in the third year. But the simple answer is that Nebuchadnezzar set out on his expedition near the end of the third year of Jehoiakim, and it was from that point that Daniel takes it. This is because Daniel wrote this long after this event. In fact, he was in Babylon or possibly in Susa in Persia at a much older age when he recorded this under the ministry of the Holy Spirit.(2) - Daniel 1:5;
Nebuchadnezzar did not finish or complete his work in Jerusalem until about the ninth month of the following year, and it was from that point that Jeremiah takes it. In other words, Daniel records it from the time Nebuchadnezzar arrived at Jerusalem, and Jeremiah records it from the time Nebuchadnezzar leaves Jerusalem.
(B) - The capture of Jerusalem and the first deportation of the Jews from Jerusalem to Babylon was the fulfillment of many warnings from the prophets of Israel's coming disaster because of the nation's negative attitude toward the truths of God. Israel had forsaken the law and had ignored God's covenant (Isaiah 24:1-6). They had ignored the Sabbath day and the Sabbatical year (Jeremiah 34:12-22). The 70 years of captivity was, in effect, God claiming these Sabbath years that were missed, which Israel had violated. In other words, God collected the 70 Sabbath years that the Jews missed over 490 years and gave the land its rest all at once.
(C) - Israel had also gone into idolatry (I Kings 11:5; 12:28; 16:31; 18:19; II Kings 21:3-5; II Chronicles 28:2-3;). Israel had also been warned of God's coming judgment upon them because of their idolatry (Jeremiah 7:24-8:3; 44:20-23;). Because of their negative attitude toward the truths of God, which included abstaining from idolatry, the people of Israel were carried off captive to Babylon, which was a center of idolatry in the ancient world. It is interesting to note that after the Chaldean captivity, idolatry never again became a major temptation to Israel. When the Word of God is ignored and violated, divine judgment sooner or later is inevitable. The spiritual lesson contained in the fact of the captivty should be strongly considered by believers today. Many times believers have a form of godliness or spirituality, but fail to know and utilize the true power of it. Remember that believers cannot captivate or bring the world into slavery for the right and the just, but the world can bring believers into captivity and slavery.
(A) - Four men are emphasized here. They are emphasized because they are spiritually mature believers even though they are teenagers. There are a few things that we should know about these young men:(3) - Deuteronomy 32:31-39, (NIV translation)(1) - They were aristocrats from the royal families in Judah. They were descended from David's house and David's linege.(B) - PRINCIPLE: God always uses prepared believers. Prepared believers are those who have their souls saturated with Bible doctrine and who are continually learning more. All of us who are believers in the Lord Jesus Christ view our circumstances in life from one of two viewpoints: the human viewpoint or the divine viewpoint. If we look at our circumstances in life from the human viewpoint, we are neutralized in our spiritual life. What we think determines what we are and what we think also determines our effectiveness in our lives as believers.
(2) - They were handsome, brilliant and qualified to take high positions in the Chaldean Empire.
(3) - They were born again believers and had studied the Word of God. They were spiritually mature and they had souls filled with Bible doctrine in their souls.
If we as believers look at our circumstances in life from divine viewpoint, we will have a relaxed mental attitude, joy, stability and a positive impact for Jesus Christ.Daniel was a young man who continually looked at everything from the divine viewpoint. Daniel as a young boy studied and learned the Word of God as it existed at that time. This prepared him for the crisis that came upon him in 606 BC when he was taken captive to Babylon. Daniel was a prepared person for one reason only: Bible doctrine in his soul, which gave him divine viewpoint.
Daniel was not successful because he had human courage or human character, but because of the fantastic storage of Bible doctrine in his soul. This fortified his frame of reference and developed a divine set of norms and standards in his conscience, which in turn gave him his divine viewpoint. This was the basis for Daniel's firm stand.
"For their rock (referring to the heathen and their gods) is not like our Rock, as even our enemies concede. Their vine comes from the vine of Sodom and from the fields of Gomorrah. Their grapes are filled with poison, and their clusters with bitterness. Their wine is the venom of serpents, the deadly poison of cobras. 'Have I not kept this in reserve and sealed it in my vaults? It is mine to avenge; I will repay. In due time their foot will slip; their day of disaster is near and their doom rushes upon them.' The Lord will judge his people and have compassion on his servants when he sees their strength is gone and no one is left, slave or free. He will say: 'Now where are their gods, the rock they took refuge in, the gods who ate the fat of their sacrifices and drank the wine of their drink offering? Let them rise up to help you! Let them give you shelter! 'See now that I myself am He! There is no god beside me. I put to death and bring to life, I have wounded and I will heal, and no one can deliver from my hand.'"(4) - Summary of verses 7 & 8.
A - There is no record of Daniel or his friends protesting the heathen names given to them. Names are superficial.
B - The problem of whether Daniel and his friends should eat the food provided by the king was a supreme test of their loyalty to the Mosaic Law.
C - Daniel's decision to not eat the royal food also demonstrates his understanding that God had brought Israel into captivity because of their failure to observe the law.
D - Daniel's handling of this situation reflects his good judgment and common sense. Instead of inviting punishment by rebellion, he courteously requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might be excused from eating food which would defile his conscience.
E - Daniel did not make any assault on the Chaldean religion and the worship of idols, even though they were wrong. He simply and courteously made his request.
The worship of idols was not the issue here as far as Daniel was concerned. He was in a strange land far from home and he was a slave, so he had no right to condemn or question their beliefs.
(5) - Summary: Daniel Chapter One:
A - The Lord can and sometimes will allow spiritually mature believers to be made slaves. (Daniel 1:3-4).(6) - Dispensations:
B - But in that slavery He will provide for the needs of His people. He will even cause the slave masters to like and respect His people. (Daniel 1:9; Proverbs 16:7).
C - When believers put the Lord first in their lives through the Word of God, they will make great decisions from a position of strength and will express great wisdom. (Daniel 1:8-13).
D - When believers put the Lord first in their lives through the Word of God, the Lord blesses them in learning and functioning in their profession. (Daniel 1:17-20).
E - Religion tries to destroy the truth: Daniel 1:5, food offered to idols. Daniel 1:7, the change of names.
F -People in high and important positions have a tendency to be insecure and frightened. (Daniel 1:10).
G - God always uses prepared people. (Daniel 1:20).
H - God honors faithfulness. (Daniel 1:21).
I - God never leaves Himself without a witness. (Daniel 1:20-21).
J - No one is an island unto himself. Since your life is inseparably linked to other people, the innocent suffer with the guilty. When this happens, God will turn cursing into blessing where there is positive volition toward Him and His Word.
(1) - DEFINITION: A dispensation is a period of time in which there is administration. God's administration of believers and God's administration of the human race. The human race is an estate and God administers that estate in a certain way.(7) - Summary: Daniel 2:1-13;
(2) - God's administration means delegation of authority. Therefore, in each dispensation or period of time, God appoints administrators or stewards.
(3) - No one can ever comprehend history apart from an understanding of dispensations. Even though you may know a great many of the facts of history, you can never truly be oriented to history without an understanding of dispensations.
(4) - This dispensational viewpoint is the only divine commentary on history. In fact, dispensations provide the divine viewpoint and the divine interpretation of history.
(5) - In every dispensation God operates through certain agencies or administrators, such as: Israel or the Church. These administrators or agencies may secceed or fail, but whether they succeed or fail, God's plan still moves on as designed.
(6) - Every dispensation involves revelation which was not given in the previous dispensation, in addition to the revelation which was given previously.
(7) There are four basic dispensations:(A) - THE AGE OF THE GENTILES - The administrators of this dispensation were the Gentiles who were believers. There was only one language on the world during this dispensation, but we don't know what language it was.(B) - THE AGE OF ISRAEL - The administrator was the nation of Israel. This age had three parts and covered a period of time of about 2,000 years. The three divisions of the Age of Israel are:
The Age of the Gentiles covers the period of time in Genesis chapter one through chapter eleven and it involves possibly over 2,000 years, from Adam to Abraham.
They all spoke one language which led to a one worldism resulting in the first United Nations culminating at the Tower of Babal in Genesis chapter eleven. God demonstrated His attitude toward one worldism and the first United Nations by totally destroying it and confusing the world by giving them many languages.
In the Age of the Gentiles God established the four divine institutions:(1) - Volition (free will):During this period there was no written revelation, no canon of Scripture. Genesis chapters one through eleven were actually written in the Age of Israel by Moses and covered the first dispensation. Abraham actually straddled the first and second dispensation. Abraham was the only human being who in his life-time belonged of two races. Abraham started out a Gentile and ended up a Jew. So the first Jew was a Gentile first.
(2) - Marriage:
(3) - Family:
(4) - Nationalism:(1) - The Patriarchs: from Abraham to the giving of the law. From Abraham to the Exodus.The Age of Israel is the age of the Old Testament canon: Genesis chapter twelve through the book of Malachi, minus the second advent passages and minus the Millennial passages. Also included in the Age of Israel are : Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, minus John chapters 13-17, which is a prophecy of the Church Age, and Revelation chapters 6-19, because this deals with the Tribulation, which is the last phase of the Age of Israel.
(2) - The law: From the Exodus to the Cross.
(3) - The Tribulation: This is a seven year period of time between the Age of the Church and the Age of Christ (the Millennium).
Since there were many languages when the Age of Israel began, there needed to be a missionary base. So God selected a missionary base, a small helpless nation, which started with nothing and moved to a very high status under David. Israel was different from all other nations in at least three ways:(1 ) - It was a theocracy:(C) - THE AGE OF THE CHURCH - the administrator is the Church. At the point where Israel left off, we have a new missionary base. In the place of a nation we have the Church, a new race, a new spiritual species (those born-again from all nations and cultures and races).
(2) - It was the custodian of divine revelation, which for the first time was reduced to writing.
(3) - It was the basis of supply for all missionaries. A missionary is one who evangelizes others in their languages which are different from his. He evangelizes in a foreign language. (You never have missionaries until you have many languages). So Israel was the first missionary base.
The temporary postponement of this dispensation came at the cross. The Age of Israel was only postponed, it was not concluded. God is not finished with the Jews, He still has seven more years for them and that is the seven years of the Tribulation period.
The Age of the Church goes from Pentecost in 30 AD to the Rapture and resurrection of all Church Age believers. So far it has been just short of 2,000 years.
The Church Age consists of two parts:(1) - The pre-canon period, which includes John chapters 13-17 and the book of Acts.(D) - THE AGE OF CHRIST: also known as the Millennium. The administrator is Christ Himself. This age runs from the second advent for 1,000 years. Isaiah chapters 11, 35, 64 and Revelation chapter 20, to name a few.
(2) - The post-canon period, which includes the epistles through Revelation chapter five.
"The earth will be filled with the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea." (Isaiah 11:9). In that day Jesus Christ will be responsible for all evangelism and missionary work.
The purpose of dispensations is so you can understand the Bible. You must understand dispensations before you can properly interpret the Bible.
(1) - In the year 603 BC, King Nebuchadnezzar had a series of dreams. Dreams that troubled him greatly, dreams that kept him from getting proper rest or sleep.(8) - Essence of God -
(2) - Nebuchadnezzar assembled the wise men of Babylon and told them to solve his problem concerning these dreams.
(3) - Since the king could not remember his dream in detail, he commanded his wise men to not only interpret the dreams, but also to tell him the content of the dreams. In other words, tell the king what he dreamed, and then tell him what it meant.
(4) - The wise men accused the king of being unfair and told him that no one could do what the king commanded except the gods, but they don't live here on the earth with human beings.
(5) - The more unsolvable the problem, the greater the miracle will be in solving it. The wise men had told the king that no one could do what the king commanded except the gods, and later on we will see God giving the young man, Daniel, the answer to Nebuchadnezzar's problem.
(6) - The king lost his patience with the wise men because of their stalling techniques and failure to produce the desired results. Therefore, he ordered them all executed.
(7) - Daniel and his friends were members of the wise men's organization, so they were on the list to be executed. So Daniel and his friends became involved in this crisis whether they liked it or not.
(A) - Sovereignty: - God is the supreme ruler over all.(9) - Daniel 2:32-33 - Summary
(B) - Righteousness: - God is perfect in all ways.
(C) - Justice: - God is always fair. He never makes a mistake.
(D) - Love: - God loves with maximum love and that never changes.
(E) - Eternal life: - God has always existed and He will always exist.
(F) - Omnipotence: - God is all powerful.
(G) - Omnipresence: - God is everywhere at the same time.
(H) - Omniscience: - God is all knowing.
( I) - Immutability: - God never changes.
( J) - Veracity: - God is always true and faithful. He always keeps His Word.
(1) - Only the first part of the image, the head, is actually in itself a united whole. The silver is divided into the arms and chest. The brass extends from the abdomen into the two thighs. The iron is divided into the two legs and the iron and the clay is divided among the two feet and ten toes. This illustrates the principle: the further human history goes, the less united it will become.(10) - Daniel 2:38: Summary:
(2) - The precious nature of the metals deteriorates from the top to the bottom. Also the gold is much heavier than the silver, the silver than the brass, the brass than the iron, and the clay in the feet is the lightest of all. While the metals decrease in weight, they increase in hardness with the exception of the clay. This image is obviously top heavy and weak in the feet.
(3) - There is also a decline in the value of the metals. From the head to the feet these metals become progressively inferior. From gold to clay. This tells us that the empires of human history become increasingly inferior as time goes on. Which means, that people become increasingly inferior as time goes on. This is the direct antithesis to evolution.
Under the concept of evolution mankind is supposed to have made progress and is supposed to have become better than in the past. But, under the concept of the image in Daniel chapter two (which is divine revelation), mankind actually becomes worse as time goes on. In other words, people were greater in the ancient world than they ever will be again, and Adam was the greatest of all (except for Jesus Christ).
(4) - At their peak, the Chaldeans were a greater people than the Medes and the Persians. The Medes and the Persians (at their peak) were greater than the Greeks, but not as great as the Chaldeans. The Greeks, at their peak, were greater than the Romans, but not as great as the Chaldeans or Persians. Therefore, we see a steady decline of the people of the world. The people of the ancient world were far superior to the people of the modern world. So this image tells us that man has not progressed down through history, he has retrogressed. He has gone backwards, and become increasingly worse.
(A) - The Chaldeans came from the southern part of Mesopotamia. The Babylonians educated the Chaldeans and gave them jobs in the government. They put them in the army and made officers and leaders out of them. One of these Chaldean officers and leader was Nabopolassar Nebuchadnezzar's father. Nabopolassar became ruler of Babylon in 626 and ruled until 605 BC.
(B) - In 612 BC, Nabopolassar teamed up with the Medes and the Scythians and took over Assyria. He then appointed his son Nebuchadnezzar the head of the army. Nebuchadnezzar had learned well from his father. In fact, he actually became greater than his father. The vigor of this Chaldean race was reaching its peak at this time. And in the last phrase of verse 38, Daniel says to Nebuchadnezzar, "You are this head of gold."
(C) - Nebuchadnezzar ruled from 605 to 562 BC. He was succeeded by his son Amel-Marduk, whom Jeremiah calls Evil Merodach in Jeremiah 52:31. Evil Merodach was very decadent, and his reign only lasted for two years (562 - 560 BC). In 560 BC he was killed in a power struggle by his own brother in-law.
(D) - Nebuchadnazzar's daughter married one of the princes of Babylon named NERGAL-SHAR-USUR (Neriglissar). His name appears on Babylonian tablets as early as the ninth year of Nebuchanezzar (596 BC). He was rich and owned large amounts of property in Babylon and elsewhere. According to Jeremiah 39:3 he was a prince of Babylon who was involved in the surrender of Jerusalem from Zedekiah in 586 BC. He is also mentioned in history as holding a high military rank.
(E) - NERGAL-SHAR-USUR (Neriglissar), the son-in-law of Nebuchadnezzar, and brother in-law of Evil Merodach had very strong feelings against the son of Nebuchadnezzar, so he led a revolt in 560 BC against the ruling house and Evil Merodach was killed and Neriglissar (Nebuchadnezzar's son-in-law) became king. Neriglissar died in march of 556 BC and was succeeded by his son Labashi Marduk.
(F) - Labashi Marduk was murdered about four months after he took the throne and a man named NABU-NAID (Nabonidus), another son-in-law of Nebuchadnezzar (he married the widow of Neriglissar) took the throne and reigned for seventeen years (556 to 539 BC).
(G) - Because of the decline of Babylon and the Chaldean Empire, invasion by the Persians was a constant threat. While Nabonidus was on a military expedition, the city of Babylon was taken by the Persians. Nabonidus had made his son Belshazzar (Daniel chapter 5) the second ruler and left him in charge of the city while he was gone. This is the reason why Belchazzar made Daniel the "third ruler," because he himself was the second ruler (Daniel 5:29).
(H) - Nebuchadnezzar was called "The head of gold," because all his successors were inferior men. So with the "hand writing on the wall" in Daniel chapter five, and the death of Belshazzar, the Chaldean Empire ceased to exist. That was 539 BC.
(I) - "The times of the Gentiles" did not begin at the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD, but at the time when Daniel was taken captive to Babylon in 606 BC. We must not confuse the phrase "the times of the Gentiles" (Luke 21:24), with the phrase "fulness of the Gentiles" used by the apostle Paul in Romans 11:25. "The fulness of the Gentiles" has no connection to "The times of the Gentiles," but refers to the Gentiles in this present dispensation who are being "called out" by the Holy Spirit as members of Christ's body, the church.
"The times of the Gentiles" runs from 606 BC to the second coming of Jesus Christ and the setting up of the Millennial Kingdom. "The times of the Gentiles" is the time of the "deification of man." From the time of Nebuchadnezzar and the day that he set up the "golden image" and commanded all the people to worship it (Daniel chapter 3:1-7) to the time when the false prophet shall command the people of the world to worship the "image of the antichrist " (Revelation 13:13-17), that period of time is called "the times of the Gentiles and is represented by the "image of a man."
(11) - Daniel 2:39a: Summary: Medo-Persian Empire:
(A) - The silver part of the image merges into one empire. In Daniel 8:20, Daniel saw a ram. The two horns of this ram were said to be the "kings of the Medes and the Persians." The ram itself represents the Medo-Persian Empire. So the two horns of the ram in Daniel chapter eight corresponds to the two arms of the image in Daniel chapter two.
(B) - While the Chaldean Empire was single-headed, the Medo-Persian Empire was a dual empire represented by the two arms of the image in Daniel chapter two and the two horns of the ram in Daniel chapter eight. The left arm of the image represented the Median Kingdom which was weaker, and the right arm of the image represnted the Persian Kingdom which was the stronger.
(C) - The Medes and the Persians lived on the east side of Mesopotamia. Toward the end of the Chaldean Empire and the rise of the Medo-Persian Empire, there was a 2000 mile border between the two kingdoms. The Tigrus River formed the border on the eastern side of the land between the rivers, the Tigrus and Euphrates Rivers.
(D) - East of the Tigrus River were many mountains. To the north was the land of the Medes, and to the south was the land of Anshan. In earlier history Anshan was known as the land of Elam, but the Elamites were extinct at this time. The land of Anshan was known as Parsa Land. This is where we get the word "Persia."
The first well known ruler of the Medes and the Persians was Cyrus the Great. He ruled from 559 to 530 BC. Cyrus was a believer and a servant of God. We know this from II Chronicles 36:22-23; Isaiah 45:1; Ezra 1:2-3.
Between 559 and 530 BC, Cyrus conquered all the known world. As the Medes and the Persians kept becoming stronger, all the other kingdoms in the world at that time kept becoming more decadent and were in continual decline.
(E) - In 559 BC, Cyrus took the throne of Anshan (Persia), and shortly thereafter brought the Medes into his kingdom, thereby controlling the land east of the Tigrus River.
In 549 BC, Cyrus conquered Lydia by defeating its king, Croesus.
In 539 BC, Cyrus conquered Babylon and the great Chaldean Empire. And it was Daniel who surrendered the Chaldean Empire to Cyrus and the Persians.
(F) - In 536 BC, Cyrus sent Zurubbabel with a small group back to Jerusalem, then in 535 BC, he allowed construction of the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem to begin.
Cyrus pulled the entire Persian Empire together before his death in 530 BC.
(G) - Cambyses II (530 BC - 522 BC): He was the son of Cyrus the Great. After his father's death in 530 BC, he took the throne and went down and conquered Egypt. Shortly after his Egyptian victories Cambyses committed suicide. The Persian Empire almost collapsed in the civil war that followed.
(H) - Darius I (522 - 486 BC): This powerful ruler put down the rebellion and saved the empire. During his reign the Greeks defeated his vast army on the plans of Marathon near Athens in 490 BC. In 515 BC, the second temple in Jerusalem was dedicated.
(I) -Xerxes (486 - 465 BC): He was the son of Darius I. He is called the Ahasuerus in the book of Esther. Esther became queen in the eighth year of Xerxes, which was 478 BC. Xerxes also tried to conquer Greece. He took an army of two million men, and in 480 BC, while marching through the mountains in central Greece, he met 300 Spartans and a number of other Greek warriors blocking the pass at Thermopylae. After a long delay and many casualties the Persians broke through, but the entire Persian expedition was defeated at the bay of Salamis a few days later.
(J) - Artaxerxes Longimanus (465 - 423 BC): He was the son of Xerxes. During his reign Nehemiah was permitted to go back to Jerusalem (444 BC). Nehemiah 2:1; Ezra 7:1-8.
After Artaxerxes Longimanus there began a decline in the Persian Empire. There were four more kings who reigned.
(K) - Darius II (423 - 404 BC).
(L) - Artaxerxes II (404 - 359 BC): Jaddua became the high priest in Jersalem during his reign (350 BC).
(M) - Artaxerxes III (359 - 338 BC).
(N) - Darius III (335 - 331 BC): During his reign Alexander the Great visited Jerusalem and was welcomed by Jaddua the high priest, who convinced him to spare the city.
Darius III, the last Persian monarch was killed in battle against Alexander the Great in 331 BC.
Glossary Part 2>>>>
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