March 27 – Devotion

Date:

March 27

Scripture: Daniel 2

He gives wisdom to the wise
and knowledge to those who have understanding;he reveals deep and hidden things;
he knows what is in the darkness,
and the light dwells with him. (Dan. 2:21-22, ESV)

Keep Calm and Seek God’s Wisdom

After 50+ years as a teacher and school administrator, I can’t count the number of times I’ve heard the words “That’s not fair!” If there ever was a person who might have reason to cry out those words, it would be the Old Testament prophet Daniel. In our Scripture reading yesterday, we saw Daniel and his friends abducted from their homes, families, and life-style in Judah and carried off to Babylon. King Nebuchadnezzar decided that these talented young men could be useful to his empire. But first, he required them to be trained in Babylonian culture. He changed their names and even their diet. Daniel chapter 1 records how God enabled Daniel to overcome this test and to be given a position of leadership.

Having passed his first test, Daniel was faced with what seems to be a ridiculously unfair challenge in chapter 2. The king, after having a troubling dream, demanded that his advisors not only interpret his dream but also tell him the content of it. If they were unable to perform this task, he would have all of them torn apart and destroy their homes. Trying to convince the king that his request was unreasonable, his counselors responded with the words, “No one can show it to the king except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh” (Dan. 2:11). With that, the furious king ordered their execution.

Although they apparently had not been consulted, Daniel and his companions were included in the decree. After hearing the explanation of the situation from the captain of the king’s guard, Daniel responded, not with fear or outrage, but with a calm spirit that reflected his trust in God. He asked for time so that he and his friends could pray and seek God’s wisdom. I’m reminded of James 1:5, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God…” (ESV).

We know what happened next. God revealed the mystery to Daniel in a vision, and Daniel immediately praised the One “to whom belong wisdom and might” (Dan. 2:20, ESV). When the skeptical king asked Daniel, “Are you able to make known to me the dream and its interpretation?” (vs. 26), he replied that no man can show the king his dream, “but there is a God in heaven who reveals mysteries!” (v. 28). After hearing Daniel’s words, which were directly from God, Nebuchadnezzar fell on his face and declared, “Truly your God is the God of gods and the Lord of kings” (v. 47, ESV). The king’s “That’s not fair” assignment was turned into an opportunity for Daniel to glorify his God.

Recently, our godly 22-year-old Mexican friend, Marcy, also had an unfair experience. Her home was burglarized, her clothes were stolen, and her dog was poisoned. This came only four months after her mom had been killed in a tragic car accident. Although devastated by these losses, the day after the break-in, she posted on Facebook,“Count it all joy, my brothers when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness” (Jas. 1:2-3, ESV). Marcy is turning an “it isn’t fair” situation into a testimony of God’s faithfulness in her life, knowing that the “God of gods and the Lord of kings” is righteous in all of His ways.
 
Prayer for the Journey:  All-knowing Father, I thank You that Your infinite wisdom is available to us when we’re faced with perplexing problems. It is a comfort to know that the inevitable tests need not be faced alone.
 
Prepared by:
Alan O’Dell

2 Responses to “March 27 – Devotion”

  1. Bob Mohr says:

    Great post Alan!! Thank you.

  2. Debbie Keen says:

    Thank you, Alan, for this powerful devotion! Marcy’s and Daniel’s testimonies are both inspiring!

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