Thursday, September 16, 2010

the challenge of truth

How great are his signs, how mighty his wonders! His kingdom is an eternal kingdom; his dominion endures from generation to generation" (Daniel 4:3, NIV).

Last week, I heard a sermon that had nearly eleven points.  It inspired me to see how much this pastor was drawing from God's Word.  If we stay connected with quiet time in the Word, I believe that God will help us see His plan.

Sometimes, the truth can feel like a cut.  An example of such a cut, I think, is in Daniel, when Nebuchadnezzar had dreams that haunted him.  In Daniel 4, he called Daniel, to interpret one he had about a tree being ordered to be cut down by a holy one.  When Daniel, who we know believed in and spent time praying to God, interpreted the dream, he was, "greatly perplexed for a time, and his thoughts terrified him" (verse 19).  When he interpreted the dream to the king, though, he made sure to include that if the king followed God, then he may not suffer (verse 27).  The king did not turn from his selfish rule, but after he suffered (his authority was taken from him and he went mad).

This story in Daniel turns, as King Nebuchadnezzar declares that God rules over all:  "His dominion is an eternal dominion; his kingdom endures from generation to generation" (verse 34b).  His sanity and kingdom were restored, and he said, "Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and exalt and glorify the King of heaven, because everything he does is right and all his ways are just. And those who walk in pride he is able to humble" (verse 37).   I admire Daniel, because he communicated the truth both accurately to, and in concern for, Nebuchadnezzar.

When we communicate God's truth through His Word, I think it is important to realize how powerful it is.  Are we communicating the truth in love?  His message can feel like a cut, but He can use it to heal us.  We are sinners, but Christ died for us so that we can know Him and live.  I pray that we continue to pray and seek His lead in living for Him.