"but there is a God in heaven who reveals mysteriesÖ" Daniel 2:28
Act I: Troubling Dreams and Nebuchadnezzarís Frustration (2:3-11)
Nebuchadnezzar had been having a recurring dream. (v. 1-3) He was intensely angry (v. 5) and very suspicious of his wise men who were unable to interpret the dream for him (v. 9)
See v. 4. Chapters 2-7 are written in Aramaic, the language people of different nations used to communicate with each other, as they deal with matter of importance to the Gentile nations. Chapters 8-12 are written in Hebrew, as they deal with concerns of the chosen people
Act II: Nebuchadnezzarís Decree and Ariochís Explanation (2:12-16)
Though they hadnít completed their 3 year study course, Daniel and his friends were already in positions of importance, as they were on the hit list (v. 13)
There must been a relationship of trust and respect between Daniel and Arioch. Notice how Arioch takes the time to talk and listen to Daniel. (v. 15)
Act III: Four Menís Prayers and Danielís Adoration (2:17-23)
The first thing Daniel and his friends did was pray (v. 17-18), and God answered their prayers (v. 19)
In verses 20-23, Daniel praises God for hearing them. Notice how the focus in this prayer is squarely on God. Daniel takes no credit for what had just happened. Despite the fact their lives had been saved, Daniel gives God the glory. Thatís some maturity for a teenager.
Act IV: Divine Mysteries and Danielís Interpretation (2:24-45)
Notice Arioch says he found Daniel (v. 25). However, Daniel tells the king who is really responsible for interpreting the dream (v. 27-28)
The dream concerns Babylon and the empires that will follow it. Gold is Babylon. Silver is the Medo-Persian empire. Bronze is the Greek empire of Alexander the Great. Iron is the Roman empire. The clay represents the weaker confederation of states controlling the territory of the former Roman empire. The rock not cut by human hands is God and His kingdom.
Notice how the metals decrease in value, symbolizing the decreasing power and grandeur of the rulers of these successive empires. Yet, the metals increase in their toughness and endurance, meaning each empire will last longer than the previous. Yet, it is all built on clay.
Act V: The Kingís Honor and Danielís Elevation (2:46-49)
Nebuchadnezzar had least acknowledges Danielís God (v. 47) and rewards Daniel immensely (v. 48 and 49) Daniel didnít forget his friends either!
#1) Though God is sovereign and in control of history, He has chosen to use our human knowledge, wisdom, tact, and abilities to achieve His divine and eternal purposes (Acts 4:23-31 and Romans 11:33-36)
Though God is sovereign, He as chosen to use the process of prayer to unleash His miraculous power to enable us to solve problems that range from those simple issues we face at the purely human level to those that are very complex and far beyond our human capabilities
No matter how much we contribute to Godís work in this world with our time, our talents, and our treasures, we should always give Him all honor and glory for what has been accomplished (Ephesians 3:20-21)