Wednesday, October 5, 2011

With Whom Will You Be Counted Among Part 2


In a world taken over by evil, violence, corruption and perversion, Noah was the one man at the time who “…found favor (grace) in the eyes of the LORD.” Why? Because “Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations”. He was “a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time”. Noah wasn't just a righteous man, he was the only follower of God left in his community, town, city, and country...and in the whole world at the time. “Noah walked with God.” Living in a society saturated with sin and rebellion against God, Noah was the only man alive that pleased God. Can you imagine such unwavering faithfulness in the midst of such godlessness?

"Noah did everything just as God commanded him."

He obeyed God when everyone else didn’t. He did not conform to the ways and practices of the world around him. He did not follow men. It wasn't that he lived in Rome and thus "did as the Romans did". No...Not Noah. Noah acknowledged God’s presence and His nature; holy, just, loving, fearful... and he lived his life in accordance to this reality, this faith...though everyone else around him did otherwise. Noah wasn’t sinless, but he loved God, and feared God and was obedient to God.


Daniel remained faithful to God while facing many pressures as a captive in Babylon. The King of Babylon was looking for young men with “no blemish, but well-favored, and skilful in all wisdom, and cunning in knowledge, and understanding science, and such as had ability in them to stand in the king's palace, and whom they might teach the learning and the tongue of the Chaldeans” to serve them. To the Chaldeans (Babylonians), Daniel met these requirements. But from day one of his unique captivity, (not to suffer as a prisoner, but to be trained, brought up in the culture of Babylon and to serve the Babylonian Kingdom in an honorable role) “Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself”. He purposed in his heart and determined it in his mind to not dishonor his God by conforming to any of the ways and practices of His captors that went against that of his God. The Lord God had placed Daniel in Babylon to serve Him from there. It is written, “Slaves, obey in everything those who are your earthly masters, not by way of eye-service, as people-pleasers, but with sincerity of heart, fearing the Lord. Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.” So Daniel was to serve the Lord from Babylon with sincerity in heart and fearing the Lord. Daniel obeyed what he was instructed to do by the Babylonians and their King but whenever there was a command from his masters that went against his God, Daniel wouldn’t do it. Instead he would honor His God over men at whatever cost. Because of this, Daniel disobeyed some instructs of his masters. In doing so, before God, Daniel was seen as “faithful, and no error or fault was found in him.” When a decree was made that no one should pray to any god but the King of Babylon alone and that disobedience to the decree meant death by lions, it is written that "Daniel, pays no attention to you, O king, or to the decree you put you put in writing. He still prays three times a day." “Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before.”

It is written, “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” Daniel is such a righteous man for from his account he said...

“While I was speaking and

praying, confessing my

sin and the sin of my people

Israel, and presenting my

plea before the LORD my

God for the holy hill of my

God, while I was speaking in

prayer, the man Gabriel,

whom I had seen in the

vision at the first, came to

me in swift flight at the time

of the evening sacrifice. He

made me understand,

speaking with me and

saying, "O Daniel, I have now

come out to give you insight

and understanding. At the

beginning of your pleas for

mercy a word went out, and I

have come to tell it to you,

for you are greatly loved.”

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