Daniel 2, Psalm 79
The organization of the Old Testament can throw off our chronology. Remember, for example, that Daniel’s early years in Babylon precede the events of Esther, Ezra, and Nehemiah. If we keep this in mind, we can start to note a pattern after the fall of Jerusalem to Babylon. In many ways, the Jewish people become more faithful after the fall of their kings than before. Instead of relying on military strength or roaring success, these exiles learn to trust in the Lord their God while suffering. Daniel is in quite the precarious position in today’s reading, from a human standpoint, since he is facing imminent execution. That makes the control Daniel exudes in his situation remarkable. Confident in God’s provision, even provision of hidden dreams, Daniel delivers both Nebuchadnezzar’s dream and interpretation, along with a stunning description of God’s Lordship over all things. Dear church, do not miss the point. God’s people do well, often better, when we don’t have power, when we can’t rely on popularity or riches. In days where the church’s influence has diminished in the West, and apathy, if not disdain, towards Christianity has grown, we don’t have to see our time as irredeemably bleak. Certainly Daniel’s situation was far worse than any of us regularly face or likely will endure. No matter, God was on the throne then. like now. That should make us confident that whatever the waves of history’s ebbs and flows cast in our direction, God will be our strength.