Thursday, April 10, 2014

Dare To Be A Daniel

I think we need to follow James' advice and spend more time asking Yahweh for wisdom because it appears we don't have enough. We are an incredibly blessed people having great knowledge of Father through our King, Jesus the Christ. We have been given the keys to unlock great riches in the Word. We have blessings such as salvation, righteousness, holiness poured out on us. We have been given power through the Holy Spirit in us to operate in great spiritual gifts so we can serve Jesus with power. We are rich beyond our understanding and have great joy and peace. Yet, we either don't know how to use any of it or we refuse.

Yesterday we considered how Yahweh equips us for whatever he calls us to do and we used Daniel as an example. We read:

To these four young men God gave knowledge and understanding of all kinds of literature and learning. And Daniel could understand visions and dreams of all kinds. (Daniel 1:17)

This is great to read and is encouraging for us but it would have been useless for everyone if Daniel and his friends failed to operate in it. It's great to be blessed in this way but we have to use the blessings. Right away Daniel and his friends were put to work using these tools. The king wanted someone to not just interpret his dream but to actually know what the dream was without being told. He wanted a word of knowledge. Because no one could do it he was going to kill all the wise men. But Daniel used his tools:

Then with counsel and wisdom Daniel answered Arioch, the captain of the king’s guard, who had gone out to kill the wise men of Babylon. (Daniel 2:14)

That was the tool of wisdom but Daniel followed this up with the tool Yahweh had given specifically to him:

Then Daniel went to his house, and made the decision known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions, that they might seek mercies from the God of heaven concerning this secret, so that Daniel and his companions might not perish with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. Then the secret was revealed to Daniel in a night vision.  (v. 17-19)

Daniel trusted Yahweh and used the tools/gifts he had been given and it resulted in a huge impact in this foreign kingdom. It revealed Yahweh to Nebuchadnrezzar:

Truly your God is the God of gods, the Lord of kings, and a revealer of secrets, since you could reveal this secret. (v. 47)

And it paid off pretty good for Daniel and his friends as well with the king placing Daniel as the ruler of the province of Babylon allowing Daniel to appoint his friends to high positions as well. Now they were in a place to protect the people of Israel.

I will be honest with you: I have received certain gifts that I have often avoided using. I am afraid of them because I am afraid of operating in my flesh instead of the Spirit. It is a trust issue that I have to work through because I have been given those gifts as tools, not to profit myself, but for the purposes of the Kingdom. Many of us are like this, failing to use the tools we have been given for the purpose and mission of Jesus. Some people ignore their gifts, others are timid and others misuse them for their own personal gain.

We have no excuse for the current state of affairs in the Body and in our personal lives. Jesus has made sure that we are equipped with everything we need to be his witnesses, to minister to a suffering world, to demonstrate his love with power and conviction. It is we who choose to fail; who choose to hide; who choose to seek for ourselves. We need to find our courage again; to rise up in the anointing of the Spirit and use the tools we have been given for the mission of our King.

As a little lad in Sunday School, I remember singing "Dare to be a Daniel" which was a great little children's chorus promoting the need to stand in our testimony concerning Jesus, no matter the cost. But we fail to grasp that there was more to Daniel than just taking a stand. There was also the willingness to be the man Yahweh needed at that time to represent him to the king. There was the willingness to operate in the gifts Yahweh had given him for the task. The interpretation of dreams is no small thing. Because of his reliance on Yahweh, his willingness to operate in the Spirit and the great amounts of time he devoted in prayer, he was also available to receive a ton of prophecy. Yet, we are greater than Daniel simply because we have made a decision for Jesus. We are better equipped. We have been called to a greater work. We are possessed by the Spirit. So I do ask, will you dare to be a Daniel in the full context of our relationship with Jesus? Will you do more than stand? Will you also work in obedience according to the will of Father with the tools that have been provided?

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