Nebuchadnezzar’s Dream of the Great Image, by Louis A. Dole

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“Thou, O king, sawest, and behold a great image… The image’s head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, his legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay. Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces.” – Daniel 2:31-34

Readings

Daniel 2:31-49 · Matthew 8:1-13 · Psalm 139

Sermon

Nebuchadnezzar was king of Babylon when it was at the height of its power. It subdued Egypt and Assyria and took Judah into captivity.

Babylon is used in the Scriptures as the symbol of self-love – that love of ruling over others which would subject everything to its dominion, even the Church, that it might rule over the souls of men to the end that thus it might dominate the whole world, both natural and spiritual.

The king of Babylon represents the principle of unbridled love or rather lust of dominion. Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, had conquered many nations; he was ambitious to rule the whole world. And while he was in this state of mind, he had the significant dream which is narrated in our text.

This dream was a revelation from the Lord as to the state of the world and as to the future conditions of the church.

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“We shall not find any occasion against this Daniel, except we find it against him concerning the law of his God,” by Louis A. Dole

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“We shall not find any occasion against this Daniel, except we find it against him concerning the law of his God.” – Daniel 6:5

Readings

Daniel 6 · Mark 10:13-27 · Psalm 118:1-14

Sermon

The book of Daniel is in its letter a book of the captivity of Babylon. The opening chapters are a narrative of Daniel’s experiences, written in the third person. The remainder is written almost entirely in the first person, and describes visions which were seen by the prophet alone. The book is one of marvelous interest even for its story, and contains some of those chapters in the Word which appeal to young and old alike, and which we love to read over and over again.

But the book becomes more wonderful and impressive when we know that it treats of spiritual conditions in which the soul appears to be captive and is threatened by worldly ambitions, which Babylon represents. Baal, Babel, and Babylon are words frequently met with in the Word, and they represent a state in which selfish and worldly ambitions aspire to domineer over spiritual things.

Daniel was a prophet. As a young man he had been marked for his unusual abilities, and was among the first of those taken into captivity by king Nebuchadnezzar. He was a man raised up by the Lord to hold his people steadfast during the trying times which were to come. He soon came into prominence in Babylon, and the Babylonians learned that he had a wisdom superior to that of their soothsayers, magicians, and astrologers. He could interpret dreams and read strange writings. He was feared and persecuted, but always remained steadfast.

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“And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end,” by Louis A. Dole

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“And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things?
“And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.” – Daniel 12:8, 9

Readings

Daniel 12 · Mark 13:24-37 · Psalm 119:129-144

Sermon

January 29th of this week is the 271st anniversary of the birth of Emanuel Swedenborg. He is becoming recognized more and more as one of the greatest scientists of the age, yet his scientific achievements were merely part of his preparation for his call to be the instrument of the Lord’s Second Coming.

When the Lord first came, He was seen in outward human form. He lived a life as concrete and visible as that of any man. Many things that He said and did are recorded, and are a plain matter of history. He came as a man among men. But His Second Coming was not in person. It was a new revelation of Himself in His Word. It was a coming to the minds of men – not to their bodily senses. It was an opening of the Scriptures, and a bringing to view of truths hitherto unperceived and unknown. This body of new truths is meant by the New Jerusalem in Revelation descending from God out of heaven. Those who receive these truths constitute the Church of the New Jerusalem on earth, a new Christian Church, distinguished from the former Christian Church by its new teachings about the Lord and His Word based upon the new knowledge of the spiritual sense of the Word, and not merely on its letter.

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