[2Co 5:7 KJV] 7 (For we walk by faith, not by sight:)
Daniel was an interpreter of dreams, a dissolver of doubts. One dream he interpreted was of the great wondrous image that Nebuchadnezzar saw. It was revealed that the dream had to do with the dissolving of kingdoms and the setting up of the everlasting kingdom, a kingdom that would never be removed or dissolved. The image was struck in the feet and reduced to dust; blown away by the wind like chaff on the threshing floor. All of it’s components were disassociated, de-constructed and most notably, not reconstructed or rearranged into the everlasting kingdom, but completely scattered. The everlasting kingdom came in the form of a stone, the same stone that the builders reject. That stone grew into a great mountain and filled the earth.
It is also most notable that Daniel was shown that the everlasting kingdom had a peculiar trait about it…it would “not be left to others”. There is no line of succession, not generations coming and going, in fact it is no work of flesh at all. Every building material from gold to clay were never again enjoined under the guise of a kingdom. Jesus said “flesh and blood can not inherit the kingdom of God”. When would this everlasting kingdom “come”? I suppose conventional wisdom teaches that for one kingdom to “come” and be established. the previous kingdom must first be eradicated and replaced with the everlasting kingdom. And so humanity moves from kingdom to kingdom, empire to empire, one form of “understanding” to another, always looking over the horizon for something to “come”. But what does Daniel say?
“This [is] the dream; and we will tell the interpretation thereof before the king.
Thou, O king, [art] a king of kings: for the God of heaven hath given thee a kingdom, power, and strength, and glory. And wheresoever the children of men dwell, the beasts of the field and the fowls of the heaven hath he given into thine hand, and hath made thee ruler over them all. Thou [art] this head of gold.
And after thee shall arise another kingdom inferior to thee, and another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all the earth. And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron: forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all [things]: and as iron that breaketh all these, shall it break in pieces and bruise. And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters’ clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay. And [as] the toes of the feet [were] part of iron, and part of clay, [so] the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken. And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay.
And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, [but] it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever. Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great God hath made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter: and the dream [is] certain, and the interpretation thereof sure.“
The everlasting kingdom, which has no line of succession, is set up in the very days of the kingdoms it destroys. It is not just another image cobbled together, rearranging the same old constituents into some new experiment. The eternal kingdom is Christ, and is entered into in faith. What did Daniel try to convey to Nebuchadnezzar about the purpose of the dreams Nebuchadnezzar saw? Daniel told him that the intent was that Nebuchadnezzar understand the Lord rules NOW among the kingdoms of men and flesh. The Lord sets up kingdoms and throws kingdoms down. And in the midst of all this chronology and change, the Lord is operating and establishing the everlasting kingdom. Not after the former are destroyed, but while and as they are destroyed. If one sees this, and recognizes that he/she has received an everlasting kingdom which will never be destroyed, he/she has experienced the truth and certainty of what the apostle wrote, saying:
“That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness; Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated [us] into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, [even] the forgiveness of sins: Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature:
For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether [they be] thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.”
Notice that the apostle did not say “will deliver”, but “hath delivered”, which is a very notable difference. So, where is the destruction of the former kingdoms in this? for now, it is in the one delivered. The one who walks in this in faith is not looking for another kingdom. Jesus Himself sits in power and absolute authority while His enemies are made His footstool.
Daniel offers a unique perspective. You can walk in faith while many things come and go in your time of sojourn. Daniel lived through many regimes. The Kingdom of Judah, the Kingdom of Babylon under Nebuchadnezzar, The Kingdom of Babylon under Belshazzar, the Kingdom of Media under Darius, and into the Kingdom of Persia under Cyrus. Daniel lived through these things, but only truly lived in one Kingdom. I promise you that Daniel never confused any of these houses of flesh with the Kingdom of God. The book of Daniel begins with the carrying away captive, the vessels of the Lord’s House. The vessels were carried away and place in the treasure house of the “god” of Babylon. Is the Lord concerned with pots and cups? Daniel, Hananiah, Azariah and Mishael were the vessels. And regardless of surroundings, they never permitted themselves to lose that identity. This is a great lesson to us. If we have received a kingdom in faith, then let us walk in faith, the times, seasons, kingdoms, religions, social thinking dujour notwithstanding. If you have received the Lord in faith, and nothing in the world looks any different, don’t believe your eyes. If you know that we, in Christ, are the Temple of God, then don’t look for another. Have faith in the operation of God, who knows how to preserve the faithful while simultaneously reserving the faithless for judgment.
Daniel lived through much of what was represented by the image he interpreted. Another individual lived through the Iron Kingdom, long after Daniel. And if you are reading this, you too live in the Iron Kingdom. Nathaniel was everything Daniel, Hananiah, Azariah, and Mishael were. True Jews. That is, inwardly. Nathaniel lived in a time of Roman occupation. The Romans kept Judah and Israel divided and conquered, as they do to this day. Nathaniel understood that it was the time Messiah was expected. In fact, many false messiahs had already come and gone. It is worth noting the scriptural definition of Messiah. It does not mean savior, or political hero. It means The Anointed. As Nathaniel sat under a fig tree, he wondered how he would know Messiah if Messiah were to appear. Nathaniel was considering in his mind, how that Jacob had seen the Lord at the top of a ladder in a dream. It occurred to Nathaniel that as Jacob was seeing the Lord, the Lord was certainly seeing Jacob. This thought entered Nathaniel’s heart by Jesus putting it there, Jesus who was “seeing” him at that moment under the fig tree. Nathaniel knew this experience was from God. Nathaniel had his answer. Messiah would find him. No sooner had Nathaniel had this experience of revelation, than did Jesus appear and hailed him as an Israelite in deed…someone whose heart had no guile…no hidden motives. Nathaniel asked Jesus, “where do you know me from?”. Jesus said, “before Philip called you, I am the one who was watching you under the fig tree”. Nathaniel did not say anything about Rome. He did not say anything about the temple, the priests or Herod. He did not ask when everything would be straightened out in the nation. He said “You are the King of Israel, you are the Son of God”. Jesus said, “because I reveal that it was I you experienced under the fig tree, you believe? I tell you the truth, hereafter you (like Jacob) will see the angels of God ascending and descending upon the son of man.”
We should be seeing this too.
If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, [who is] our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.
“Hid” is the word “krypto” …encrypted, concealed. And so will we be in this world…as He is in this world. When He is revealed in glory…we will appear with Him.
Don’t be deceived by the natural appearance of things. All will be revealed together. We have received a kingdom that can not be moved. Beware of the folly of looking for another in this world. The rock has smitten the image. All the king’s horses and all the kings men, will never put Humpty together again. The kingdom which did this is within you. You are a vessel of the Lord’s house, no matter where you find yourself now. Faith and patience.