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Hearts to Understand

December 21, 2016

Sermon of the Day: The Blood Covenant

 

Daniel 10:12

Then he said to me, “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words.

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Good Morning Men. I hope and pray all is well and growing in your relationship with the Lord.

This morning I would love to share a few things about the prophet Daniel. Of course reading through this entire book is amazing and eventful. What a life, what a purpose, what a courageous man!

The above verse really grabbed my attention. We all pray for things, and as I am sure many of you have learned God answers prayers in three ways. Yes, No, and not now. Usually the ‘not now’ reply is the most difficult for us in the beginning because we want an answer right away. Especially the answer we want, but God has His wisdom filled way of teaching us amazing things in the process.

So here we have Daniel, mourning, praying and fasting for three full weeks. That in and of itself is just so powerful, and so courageous than many of us, myself included cannot even fathom.

However, the angel of the Lord spoke to Daniel and said since the first day he was heard! The first day, I know there have been times where I feel like I am not heard, I have to assume there was some of that going on in Daniels head.

What I want to draw out from scripture are four examples of how Daniels prayers were not only heard, but how this man had set his heart to understanding and humbled himself before God.

     1. Daniel purposed in his heart. 

Daniel 1:8

 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank; therefore he requested of the chief of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.

Men in anything we do, if we do not purpose in our heart, if we do not become intentional; nothing changes permanently. We may have a season of growth, or change, but old bad complacent habits will always prevail if we do not purpose in our hearts. Look at any major accomplishment in your life, how did you get there? Exactly! So now why are we struggling in other areas that we want to change or grow? We have not purposed in our hearts.

      2. Daniel knows who the Sovereign God of the universe is. 

Daniel 2:28 

 But there is a God in heaven who reveals secrets, and He has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what will be in the latter days. Your dream, and the visions of your head upon your bed, were these…

Men whether you are standing before kings, or faced with a life altering decision, knowing who is ultimately in control of everything will affect your decision. Daniel knew that God is sovereign over all things, and he knew that God alone deserves all glory, honor and credit.

     3. Daniel trusted completely in the Lord his God. 

Daniel 6:22

“My God sent His angel and shut the lions’ mouths, so that they have not hurt me, because I was found innocent before Him; and also, O king, I have done no wrong before you.”

Daniel in the lion’s den is a powerful story about trusting God and His sovereign grace above any man-made power. Daniel was so bold and so courageous, that he risked his life to stand up for the name and glory of God. This reminds me of what Pastor Adrian Rogers always says: “A faith that can’t be tested, is a faith that can’t be trusted.”

     4. Daniel’s faith is anchored in the Lord. 

Daniel 3:17-18

17 If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. 18 But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”

Here was have another powerful story of Daniel and his three friends being tested by fire, literally. They chose to obey God, rather than obey man. Even if that man was the king and had all humanly power to take their lives. King Nebuchadnezzar sure tried, but God in His sovereign grace and power used Daniel, and this trial to be glorified and worshiped as the one true God.

 

Men I hope and pray that you will take these four points and learn to apply them in your lives.

May the Lord richly bless you and keep you. May He shine His face upon you and be gracious to you; May the Lord turn His face to you and give you peace.

 

 

 

 

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