Devotional: ‘The Great Image of Man’s Kingdom’

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Daniel 2:24 Then Daniel went to Arioch, whom the king had appointed to execute the wise men of Babylon, and said to him, “Do not execute the wise men of Babylon. Take me to the king, and I will interpret his dream for him.” 25 Arioch took Daniel to the king at once and said, “I have found a man among the exiles from Judah who can tell the king what his dream means.” 26 The king asked Daniel (also called Belteshazzar), “Are you able to tell me what I saw in my dream and interpret it?” 27 Daniel replied, “No wise man, enchanter, magician or diviner can explain to the king the mystery he has asked about, 28 but there is a God in heaven who reveals mysteries. He has shown King Nebuchadnezzar what will happen in days to come.”

Hundreds of years before Jesus was born God gave a special dream to a pagan king. In this dream God revealed four great man-made kingdoms that have tried to rule the world.

Daniel 2:31 “Your Majesty looked, and there before you stood a large statue—an enormous, dazzling statue, awesome in appearance. 32 The head of the statue was made of pure gold, its chest and arms of silver, its belly and thighs of bronze, 33 its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of baked clay.

The great statue represented the four great kingdoms of man. Nebuchadnezzar’s kingdom began as the head of gold. Perhaps no kingdom of man has ever been more magnificent than that of the Babylonians. Yet the kingdom of the Babylonians lasted only for a season. One night, during a godless and wicked celebration, the kingdom of the Medes and Persians overthrew the kingdom of the Babylonians and thus the second kingdom made of silver was established. “After you, another kingdom will arise, inferior to yours.” (Daniel 2:39) The kingdom Medo-Persian kingdom lasted for nearly two hundred years, yet it too faded away into history. Next came the kingdom of bronze. “Next, a third kingdom, one of bronze, will rule over the whole earth.” (Daniel 2:39) Bronze is a symbol of the kingdom of the Greeks established by Alexander the Great. History tells us that Alexander cladded his army in bronze. Though Alexander is said to have conquered the known world, he died before the age of thirty-three. The kingdom of Alexander the Great did not endure. Lastly came the kingdom of Romans, represented by the feet of clay and iron.

As the king dreamed on, something even more peculiar happened.

Daniel 2:34 While you were watching, a rock was cut out, but not by human hands. It struck the statue on its feet of iron and clay and smashed them. 35 Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver and the gold were all broken to pieces and became like chaff on a threshing floor in the summer. The wind swept them away without leaving a trace. But the rock that struck the statue became a huge mountain and filled the whole earth.”

The rock cut without hands represents the kingdom of Christ. Even though man has tried to live independently of God, his effort has been futile. Scripture teaches us that in the end Christ will return and He will establish His kingdom that will endure forever.

Join me again tomorrow as we continue this study.

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