Monday, May 5, 2008

God does Surprise Parties

I’m so glad you are staying with me as we study and learn from Daniel!

We’re on Chapter 5 this week and there is much to discover…let’s go!

Crack open your Bible to chapter 5 or pull it up online using YouVersion if you want. We’ll be focusing in on verses 1-5 today, so go ahead and read those now…

Ya done?

Ok, new king in the story. Scholars think he was probably King Nebby’s son, grandson, descendant or even just a successor. That narrows it down, doesn’t it? Whoever he was, he came right after Nebby. He didn’t really give a hoot about God, His laws, or His people any more than Nebby did.

Our story with King Belshazzar begins with he and his party peeps reveling and drinking and living it up and doing so using the temple goblets that were stolen from Jerusalem. Tomorrow we’ll talk about why this is so important, but today let’s focus on what happens next.

Apparently, God was too happy about the whole situation and He decided to show up.

Slide down to verse 5. Here, I’ll type it for us…

Suddenly the fingers of a human hand appeared and wrote on the plaster of the wall, near the lampstand in the royal palace.”

We’re going to stop on the word suddenly.

I think it interesting that as I read about this disgusting display of wickedness using the things that were set apart for God’s temple, that the writer used the word “suddenly.”

I know that to those in the par-tay thought it was sudden, and it was, but was it to God?

Let’s look at some other scripture where God just shows up all of the sudden.

Luke 2:9-13 This is the story of the shepherds in the field on the night Jesus was born. “Suddenly a great company of the heavenly hosts appeared with the angel…”

Acts 9:1-6 Saul is about to have a life changing moment with Jesus. Verse 3, “As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him.”

I Thessalonians 5:1-4 This describes what it will be like when Jesus returns. Verse 2 “for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.”

Matthew 28:9 Jesus is back from the dead and… “Suddenly Jesus met them”

Luke 24:28-39 Jesus has returned and is “on tour” so to speak. Verse 36 “While they (the disciples) were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’”

God shows up at what seems the strangest times. However, God’s timeline of events is really no timeline at all. We are the ones who limit God. God didn’t “crash the party” of King Belshazzar. No, He was in completely aware of all that was going on. In fact, He was in complete control. He may have shown up suddenly to them, but he was there in His perfect timing to show His perfect holiness.

The same may be for us. Sometimes we too feel like God just got a clue and showed up. Let me see if I can’t explain it better talking to you face to computer. (yes, I love video)

(Oh, I said “Baby doises…I meant noises)

God is the Great I AM. He is always aware of your every need. He doesn’t pop in and out and make sure all is well. He IS and He is attentive to all your needs. His “suddenlies” to us are His perfect timing

In chaos
In conviction
In rescue
In deliverance
In everything

In conclusion, knowing God’s “is”-ness and trusting in His perfect timing, we can have the ability to wait in full confidence…He will not fail us.


Robin Meadows said...

Great message, Nat...cute video too. (Your on a video roll!!)

Do you think maybe the word suddenly is used because in the circumstances of those stories, the focus was NOT on it seemed sudden? Just a thought...

Keep teaching us!

Kim Heinecke said...

You are completely gifted in this area. This was great.