Hearing God’s Voice from His Word
James 4:8 says, “Come near to God and he will come near to you.”
Take a moment and turn your attention to God. Tell God that you desire to trust and obey Him. Ask God to speak to you from His word.
Psalm of the Day
We give thanks to you, God;
we give thanks to you, for your name is near.
People tell about your wondrous works.
Read the Entire Psalm
Give thanks to God. Without him what would you have? Without him, who would you be? Give thanks to him because he has stooped down and come near. Give thanks.
Daniel 2:1-20 – New International Version
2 In the second year of his reign, Nebuchadnezzar had dreams; his mind was troubled and he could not sleep. 2 So the king summoned the magicians, enchanters, sorcerers and astrologers to tell him what he had dreamed. When they came in and stood before the king, 3 he said to them, “I have had a dream that troubles me and I want to know what it means.”
4 Then the astrologers answered the king, “May the king live forever! Tell your servants the dream, and we will interpret it.”
5 The king replied to the astrologers, “This is what I have firmly decided: If you do not tell me what my dream was and interpret it, I will have you cut into pieces and your houses turned into piles of rubble. 6 But if you tell me the dream and explain it, you will receive from me gifts and rewards and great honor. So tell me the dream and interpret it for me.”
7 Once more they replied, “Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will interpret it.”
8 Then the king answered, “I am certain that you are trying to gain time, because you realize that this is what I have firmly decided: 9 If you do not tell me the dream, there is only one penalty for you. You have conspired to tell me misleading and wicked things, hoping the situation will change. So then, tell me the dream, and I will know that you can interpret it for me.”
10 The astrologers answered the king, “There is no one on earth who can do what the king asks! No king, however great and mighty, has ever asked such a thing of any magician or enchanter or astrologer. 11 What the king asks is too difficult. No one can reveal it to the king except the gods, and they do not live among humans.”
12 This made the king so angry and furious that he ordered the execution of all the wise men of Babylon. 13 So the decree was issued to put the wise men to death, and men were sent to look for Daniel and his friends to put them to death.
14 When Arioch, the commander of the king’s guard, had gone out to put to death the wise men of Babylon, Daniel spoke to him with wisdom and tact. 15 He asked the king’s officer, “Why did the king issue such a harsh decree?” Arioch then explained the matter to Daniel. 16 At this, Daniel went in to the king and asked for time, so that he might interpret the dream for him.
17 Then Daniel returned to his house and explained the matter to his friends Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. 18 He urged them to plead for mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery, so that he and his friends might not be executed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. 19 During the night the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision. Then Daniel praised the God of heaven 20 and said:
“Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever;
wisdom and power are his.
Having God’s Ear through Prayer
- Express thanks to God.
- Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal sin to you.
- Confess your sin to Him and receive forgiveness.
(1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sin He is faithful and just and will forgive our sins.”)
- Bring your personal requests to God.
(Psalm 62:8 “Pour out your heart before God”)
- Pray for someone in your small group.
- Join with others from River and pray for Sarah. Ask God to encourage her and guide her as she serves overseas.
Living as God’s People by applying the Bible
Scripture Reflection from the Sermon
What do you believe that God has promised you? Not just after you die, but in this life? What biblical basis do you have for believing that? What are some things that Christians believe that are not fully biblical? Have you ever been frustrated, angry, or apathetic towards God because he has failed to do something that he never promised to do? It can be complex to understand exactly what we can believe that God will do for us. There are many promises in the Scripture. Some are universal in scope, but some are more person specific. When God promised that he would bring his people back after 70 years in Babylon, clearly this was not a promise to each individual, since many would die over the following 70 years. God has promised to never leave you or forsake you, but if you are dying of cancer, it might feel like he has. So, what has God promised you? What can you expect of him? Do you have your answer or answers? I’m not going to give you a list; I want to you think it through for yourself. Scripture tells us what we can expect from God, so think carefully about this question. This is an important question to come to grips with. The follow-up question is, “What does God expect from us?” I will give you the answer to this question because you already know: He expects us to be faithful.