(Today’s post by Chris Queen)
There are two sides to the book of Daniel. First, there are the stories we all heard as kids and loved – the fiery furnace, the lion’s den – you get the picture. Then there are these prophecies and dream interpretations, full of weird, geopolitical stuff that’s easy to gloss over because it just doesn’t make any sense.
Daniel 7 falls into the latter category. Daniel has visions that keep him up at night. They involve beasts that destroy things – in particular, a beast with ten horns, including a small horn that talks smack! Later on, we learn that these beasts represent kingdoms that rule the earth at different times.
But what I want to draw your attention to is the middle of the chapter. In it, we meet two different “characters” that aren’t that hard to figure out: the Ancient of Days and the Son of Man:
9 “As I looked, thrones were set in place, and the Ancient of Days took his seat. His clothing was as white as snow; the hair of his head was white like wool. His throne was flaming with fire, and its wheels were all ablaze. 10 A river of fire was flowing, coming out from before him. Thousands upon thousands attended him; ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him. The court was seated, and the books were opened.
11 “Then I continued to watch because of the boastful words the horn was speaking. I kept looking until the beast was slain and its body destroyed and thrown into the blazing fire. 12 (The other beasts had been stripped of their authority, but were allowed to live for a period of time.)
13 “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. 14 He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all nations and peoples of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.
Guess who these two are? (And this time, Sunday School answers are ok.) Now I’m not really big on end time prophecies, because they’re so wide open to interpretation. But this one is pretty clear beyond the beasts and the wings and the legs and the trash-talking horns: at the end of it all, the Ancient of Days (God the Father) and the Son of Man (Jesus the Son, the Messiah) will rule over everything for eternity.
We can try to interpret inscrutable prophecies and visions all day long. We can debate the how’s and when’s of the end of time all day long (and people do), but the fact that our God is sovereign and will always be sovereign is what’s most important. We can always trust in that fact no matter what else life throws at us.
Are you trusting in the sovereignty of the Ancient of Days today? If not, what’s holding you back from it?