Year 3 Day 28
Read - Daniel 7v13-28
Message - Scott Woodburn
All kingdoms pass away but the kingdom of Jesus never will. This isn't wishful thinking, it is the testimony of the Word of God. Daniel in a night vision had witnessed the rise and fall of four beasts upon the earth. The beasts represented successive world empires, each of which would have their day but would eventually leave the scene of time. But Daniel had also seen the throne room of Almighty God who was reigning over the kingdoms of man.
As Daniel continued to gaze into heaven he saw "one like a son of man" come before the Ancient of Days (v13). Who did Daniel see? He caught a glimpse of the Lord Jesus Christ. We know this because Scripture interprets Scripture. In the New Testament the term "son of man" is used eighty eight times to speak of Christ. It is a title to show His humanity. Jesus is true God, true man and without sin. Christ is the son of man.
So Daniel sees God the Son coming before God the Father and to Jesus is given power and dominion and a kingdom that will never pass away (v14). Babylon, Persia, Greece and Rome have all had their day but the kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ endures and will never ever fade away. Daniel was alarmed by what he had witnessed but he was told that the followers of God will receive the kingdom and possess it forever (v18). This brings us great assurance. No matter where we live and no matter how wicked the government, "let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire." (Hebrews 12v28-29)
Daniel was comforted but wanted to know more about the terrifying fourth beast. It was different from the others. It had teeth of iron and claws of bronze and it had ten horns on its head (v19-20). There was another horn that rose up and it spoke boastful things and waged war against the people of God (v21). What did he see?
Daniel had witnessed the rise of Rome. It would have great power symbolised by the ten horns and eventually Rome's emperors would war against the people of God and demand to be worshipped as divine. The little horn however would represent wicked Roman emperors like Nero but also multiple opponents of the church over many years.
The age between Christ's ascension and His return will be marked by fierce opposition to the Gospel. Even now many have risen who are against Christ. The Scriptures speak of these individuals as "antichrist", they seek to take Christ's place and claim the worship that is due only to Almighty God. Rome's emperors could be considered as "antichrist" but even after Rome's downfall, the spirit of antichrist continued.
Daniel is told that the "little horn" will wage war against the people of God until Christ's return. Then will come the last judgement and the giving of the kingdom to the saints (v22). Throughout history and especially just before Christ's return there will be those who speak against God, who wear out God's people and will overstep their power and authority (v25). This will continue "for a time, times and half a time" (v25). Throughout Scripture this period is described in various ways but it represents the period we are currently in - we are between the first and second coming of Jesus.
Brothers and sisters, as history moves forward to the return of Christ, kingdoms will continue to rise and fall., antichrists will come and go and eventually one final Antichrist will oppose the Lord upon this earth. I do not write these things to make you afraid. Daniel saw them and his colour changed but nevertheless he stored them up in his heart (v28). I would urge you to do the same. Be aware of the enemy and his schemes. Understand that there are antichrists in this world with a final one to come. Be discerning about what you hear and accept as truth. Yet nevertheless see again that the Son of Man will not be moved. The antichrist may rage but he will surely be destroyed by the Lamb of God. Come Lord Jesus!
Q32 What benefits do they that are effectually called partake of in this life? They that are effectually called do in this life partake of justification, adoption, sanctification, and the several benefits which, in this life, do either accompany or flow from them.