365 Challenge – Daniel

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Dear 365 Readers,

Whew!  I don’t know about you, but I felt like the trip through Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel was such a depressing journey as we witnessed disobedience and destruction… though each book was punctuated by rare chapters of hope and light.

Now we start Daniel.  Daniel was a refugee, taken captive as a young man in Israel and carted off to Babylon.  Later Daniel rose to the post of prime minister in Babylon – a post he held for a very long time!  By the time he was thrown in the lion’s den he was actually an older man.  Daniel was respectful of the pagan kings he worked for, but he never compromised his faith, even under threat of death.  The Bible gives no better model of how to live with and serve those who do not share your beliefs.

The book of Daniel is divided into two strikingly different parts:  Chapters 1-6 recount the familiar stories of Daniel and his adventures in Babylon.  Chapters 7-12 are a series of visions God gave Daniel regarding the future of world history and the rise and fall of empires.  You might want a commentary to help you through the visions – but know that, in the time the visions were given, the historical empires he references would have been known to his hearers.

Just a few short prophetic books left and we’ll start the New Testament (we start Matthew on October 2)… almost there!

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