A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.
Friday, March 27, 2020
(Photo taken by my cousin Georgia)
"What Will The Outcome Be?"
Message summary: One day we will shed these feeble bodies that are prone to sickness, weariness, aging and disease and we will rise in our glorified, immortal bodies to receive our fully allotted inheritance! What a day, glorious day that will be!
Listen to this message on your audio player.
"I heard, but I did not understand. So I asked, ĎMy lord, what will the outcome of all this be?í He replied, 'Go your way, Daniel, because the words are closed up and sealed until the time of the end'" (Daniel 12:8,9). "As for you, go your way till the end. You will rest, and then at the end of the days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance" (Daniel 12:13).
Thereís a peace Iíve come to know
Though my heart and flesh may fail
Thereís an anchor for my soul
I can say, it is well
So many of our lives have been disrupted these last several weeks due to a tiny unseen virus. One news source describes the coronavirus like this: "A single, tiny unseen enemy, more powerful than all the armies in the world." When living through uncertainty we especially want to know how it will all work out. Do you suppose we are the first generation to ever go through something like this? Our parents grew up during the Great Depression followed by World War 2 when they were in their early twenties. That was certainly a hard time full of uncertainties.
Only two years before Stephen's parents were born during our grandparents time the Spanish flu epidemic ravaged our world from January 1918 to December 1920, it infected 500 million peopleóabout a quarter of the world's population at the time. The death toll is estimated to have been anywhere from 17 million to 50 million, and possibly as high as 100 million, making it one of the deadliest epidemics in human history. (Wikipedia)
Daniel served the Lord about 2,600 years ago. He was one of the exiled hostages taken from Judah to Babylon to serve in Nebuchadnezzarís government. Daniel provides a Biblical model of one who was confronted with the temptation to compromise every bit as much as we are, but he remained firm and faithful to God.
Early in his life he made a commitment when he first went to Babylon. If you donít already know this passage I recommend that you memorize it (at least the first underlined part of the verse). "But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the kingís meat, nor with the wine which he drank" (Daniel 1:8).
Notice that he made the purpose "in his heart"; it wasnít just a passing thought. Daniel must have deeply contemplated his dilemma, considered the possible consequences, and firmly committed to his decision through fervent prayer. He demonstrates for all of us the great Biblical principle of separation. I urge you to continually learn Godís ways and, like Daniel, make a purpose or resolve in your heart to live according to His commands.
Over his long career of civil service Daniel distinguished himself while maintaining his faith and steadfast obedience to God. The first half of his book is an interesting narrative with such familiar stories as his three friends being cast into the fiery furnace and his own deliverance from the lionís den. But the last six chapters have some of the most outstanding prophecy in the Bible. God reveals to Daniel events that would transpire over the next several thousand years and even beyond our own time.
At the conclusion Daniel expresses himself in a way in which many of us can identify, particularly when it comes to some of the more difficult prophetic portions of Godís Word. "I heard, but I did not understand." Iíve sure been there. Iíve read a Scripture portion and wondered, "What does this mean and when will it happen?" And I also wonder this in regard to events in life like the coronavirus pandemic.
Iíve also experienced Danielís heartfelt appeal expressed in the question, "My lord*, what will the outcome of all this be?" Surely you have asked the same question. Many are asking that now. He wanted to know what God was going to do just like we do. But like us he didnít get the answer in every detail he wanted. Some things just wonít be revealed "until the time of the end".
And thatís true not only with prophecy, but in Godís personal dealings in our lives. Although we know that things will work out according to Romans 8:28, we so much want to know how and when. The answers to most of these questions are simply not provided. So why do we expend so much energy or allow ourselves to become anxiety ridden about those things which we can do nothing about. Yet we so often do!
We need to keep moving forward in the direction we feel God is leading and trust Him to provide the answers along the way. The apostle Paul, facing a time of great uncertainty said to the Ephesian elders, "And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me" (Acts 20:22,23).
Such is the life of faith! My friend, keep trusting today. The book of Daniel ends with this statement. "As for you, go your way till the end. You will rest, and then at the end of the days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance" (Daniel 12:13). Let us also receive this word today in our own lives. One day we will shed these feeble bodies that are prone to sickness, weariness, aging and disease and we will rise in our glorified, immortal bodies to receive our fully allotted inheritance! What a day, glorious day that will be!
Thereís a day thatís drawing near
When this darkness breaks to light
And the shadows disappear
And my faith shall be my eyes
And I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eaglesí wings
Before my God fall on my knees
And rise, I will rise
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, we donít always know where our present steps will take us on lifeís journey, but we do know they lead us to heaven as we walk with You. Our steps here may lead to steep mountains or deep valleys. Crooked paths and rough terrain may be part of the journey, but ultimately we will rest where the steps of Jesus end at heavenís throne. There we will no longer have questions about our future, for we know that we will spend eternity forever worshiping You giving You glory, honor, praise, and thanksgiving. Grant us peace and joy for our journey here below, amidst the sickness and suffering, as we anticipate our future eternal inheritance. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
* "Lord" is in the small case in this particular Scripture reference because this message to Daniel came from an angel not deity.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"I Will Rise" Video Chris Tomlin
Many churches and pastors are sharing in creative ways such as Pastor John and his wife Faithe who prepared a brief video service from their home.
Elnora Dresselhaus is sharing comforting hymns from her home piano. She is playing "Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus" in this video. We met Elnora and her husband Richard years ago during a trip to San Diego and have maintained a "long distance" friendship. Pastor Richard Dresselhaus has a daily blog titled "One For The Road" with a brief edifying message that encourages and instructs believers.
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLEģ, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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