For an introduction to this series, click here.
Oct. 19, 2006
Wow!!!! Molina just hit a two-run homer to give the Cards a 3-1 lead in the 9th!! Now watch them blow it in the bottom of the 9th.
Chapter 3 is one of the most familiar stories in the Bible. Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-Nego refused to bow when everyone else in the whole kingdom was bowing down to the image. There are all sorts of lessons to be derived from this story, but one observation I had was the fact that the king was furious at the refusal of these men to bow. He was "filled with fury, and the expression of his face was changed against S,M and A. (you know who they are) He ordered the furnace heated seven times more than it was usually heated." Had this man learned nothing? Maybe he wasn't aware of all that had happened, but surely he knew that these men were godly Jews who were not going to be bullied by anyone into disobeying God. I don't know, I just found that interesting.
In chapter 4, we see the king's humiliation before his people and before God. He had a dream, and Daniel interpreted it to mean that the king would be cut down, just like the tree in his dream, because of his pride. Here is another parallel between Daniel and Joseph. I hadn't really thought of that before. Both of them interpreted the king's dreams. Anyway, Daniel warns the king to follow God and not be lifted up in pride. And it stuck for a while, but about a year later, the king began to tell himself what a great king he was and what a great kingdom he had created, and immediately God caused the king to go insane. He roamed the fields and ate grass like an ox for "seven periods of time." That could be seven weeks, months or years, but it was long enough for his hair to grow like eagles' feathers and his nails to grow like birds' claws. At the end of this appointed time, God restored the king to sanity and he said,
"His dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom endures from generation to generation;" (4:32, ESV).
The king realized his kingdom was a gift from God, and not something he built by himself. The fact that we have this record, written apparently by the king himself, is proof of the effectiveness of Daniel and his friends as uncompromising in the service of God.
That's it!! They did it!!! WOOOOOOOOOOO! (The Cardinals won the National League pennant. Why they call it a pennant I actually have no idea. Probably has something to do with the old flags that used to hang in old Yankee Stadium.)