Monthly Archives: February 2021

Evening Prayer: February 28th

O God, though wearied by the day, I am nonetheless proud to be your disciple. My life is evidence of your power to change us, protect us, and heal us. Thank you for keeping my feet on the path and my eyes heaven bound throughout this day. Now as the evening light settles over the earth and I go to rest, I take great comfort in the knowledge that your everlasting light continues to shine. Thank you. In the matchless name of Jesus. Amen.

Daily Scripture Passage: Isaiah 43:1-7

Isaiah 43:1-7 (ESV)

Israel’s Only Savior

43 But now thus says the Lord,
he who created you, O Jacob,
    he who formed you, O Israel:
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
    I have called you by name, you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
    and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
    and the flame shall not consume you.
For I am the Lord your God,
    the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.
I give Egypt as your ransom,
    Cush and Seba in exchange for you.
Because you are precious in my eyes,
    and honored, and I love you,
I give men in return for you,
    peoples in exchange for your life.
Fear not, for I am with you;
    I will bring your offspring from the east,
    and from the west I will gather you.
I will say to the north, Give up,
    and to the south, Do not withhold;
bring my sons from afar
    and my daughters from the end of the earth,
everyone who is called by my name,
    whom I created for my glory,
    whom I formed and made.”

Thoughts to Ponder from Daniel 7:2-14

Daniel 7:2-14 English Standard Version (ESV)

2 Daniel declared, “I saw in my vision by night, and behold, the four winds of heaven were stirring up the great sea. 3 And four great beasts came up out of the sea, different from one another. 4 The first was like a lion and had eagles’ wings. Then as I looked its wings were plucked off, and it was lifted up from the ground and made to stand on two feet like a man, and the mind of a man was given to it. 5 And behold, another beast, a second one, like a bear. It was raised up on one side. It had three ribs in its mouth between its teeth; and it was told, ‘Arise, devour much flesh.’ 6 After this I looked, and behold, another, like a leopard, with four wings of a bird on its back. And the beast had four heads, and dominion was given to it. 7 After this I saw in the night visions, and behold, a fourth beast, terrifying and dreadful and exceedingly strong. It had great iron teeth; it devoured and broke in pieces and stamped what was left with its feet. It was different from all the beasts that were before it, and it had ten horns. 8 I considered the horns, and behold, there came up among them another horn, a little one, before which three of the first horns were plucked up by the roots. And behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of a man, and a mouth speaking great things.

The Ancient of Days Reigns
9 “As I looked,

thrones were placed,
and the Ancient of Days took his seat;
his clothing was white as snow,
and the hair of his head like pure wool;
his throne was fiery flames;
its wheels were burning fire.
10 A stream of fire issued
and came out from before him;
a thousand thousands served him,
and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him;
the court sat in judgment,
and the books were opened.
11 “I looked then because of the sound of the great words that the horn was speaking. And as I looked, the beast was killed, and its body destroyed and given over to be burned with fire. 12 As for the rest of the beasts, their dominion was taken away, but their lives were prolonged for a season and a time.

The Son of Man Is Given Dominion
13 “I saw in the night visions,

and behold, with the clouds of heaven
there came one like a son of man,
and he came to the Ancient of Days
and was presented before him.
14 And to him was given dominion
and glory and a kingdom,
that all peoples, nations, and languages
should serve him;
his dominion is an everlasting dominion,
which shall not pass away,
and his kingdom one
that shall not be destroyed.

If you’ve studied any history, you know that the authority held by a monarch is meant to be passed down from one ruler to the next, not taken by force. This transfer of power typically happens in a coronation ceremony. In many cultures, the coronation ceremony reflects the belief that the power to rule comes from God – or at least from a source higher than themselves. Here in Daniel, we see the ultimate coronation. The figure of “the son of man” receives “dominion, glory, and kingship” from none other than his heavenly Father.

Daniel’s author saw this “son of Man” as an apocalyptic ruler who would bring justice to the earth. With Spirit-inspired hindsight, we know him as Jesus, who has power over all creation. Contrast Jesus’ power with that of the four beasts that precede him in Daniel’s vision. These four animals signified the empires of Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome. In spite of their great might, these dynasties eventually crumbled. Like many governments, they fell because their rulers became greedy and tyrannical, caring more about their influence than about their subjects. Clearly, that’s not how Jesus rules his people!

What about us? As Christians, we are “heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ” (Romans 8:17). That means we share in Jesus’ authority and in his commission to build his kingdom here on earth. It is a high calling, and with it comes a high dignity. We are children of Almighty God! Filled with the power of the Spirit, we can do even greater things than Jesus himself did (John 14:12)!

Today and every day, remember who YOU are in Christ. United with him, you have enormous potential to transform your family, workplace, and community. You have the mind of Christ to bring wisdom where there is confusion and comfort where there is anxiety. You have the anointing of Christ to bring healing, love, and mercy where there is hatred and division. And in our world and nation, this is an enormous gift and responsibility.

Put yourself in his hands today, and call on his power to help you live a life pleasing to him. Then, you can accomplish more than you ever thought possible.