Monday, June 27, 2011

The Fifth Kingdom

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 in and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.
Daniel 2:44

All eyes were upon the poster of the great image that Glen had placed upon the easel. All eyes except those of the young lady in the first row. She sat upright with a rapt expression on her face, her fingers tracing the raised outlines of the giant statue in Daniel chapter two in her large binder. Glen had pasted a drawing of the image onto a sheet of cardboard and carefully cut it out and mounted it onto the page she was now tracing with her fingers. He had used a braille slate and stylus to make labels for the four metals and four kingdoms that the statue represented. Off to one side and above the figure was the rough outline of a huge stone.

Glen began to read the poem he had composed for tonight’s class;

The king of Babylon had a fearful dream,

In which he saw a giant image gleam.

From his day forward, ‘til the statue’s fall,

Its varied metals and its form told all.

In all, four earthly kingdoms were decreed.

Then fell the smiting stone with awesome speed.

The kingdoms gone, God’s kingdom in their place,

Where every saint shall stand and sing with shining face.

I was impressed with the sparse wording and vivid imagery of his poem, so suitable to the text of Daniel chapter two. Glen had read it with a feeling of awe and drama. His husky voice was both gentle and strong. Glen read from his outline of this great chapter that co-ordinated so many Bible prophecies. He spoke with great conviction; “Folks, this image not only reveals, as no other text in or out of the Bible does, the course of world history from the time of Nebuchadnezzar until the return to earth of our Lord Jesus Christ. But it reveals that all of man’s efforts are played out within an historical framework that is as fixed as the stars or the cycles of the seasons. When man thinks he is running things and steering the ship of history, he is ignorant of God’s revelation, which is history told before it takes place. This is one of the worst forms of ignorance and totally without justification.”

“Now I trust you have all had time to go over the king’s dream in Daniel two and Daniel’s interpretation of it as revealed to him by God. To see if the basic truths contained in this chapter have really hit home,” he paused at the word “hit” and then continued, "I am going to ask you a very simple question. How many kingdoms are in this dream?"

Hands went up as soon as his question was spoken. “Yes sir, “Glen pointed to a man in the back row. “Four” was his confidant reply. Glen said nothing and the man grew impatient. “Head of gold, Babylon. Arms and chest of silver, Media Persia. Belly and thighs of bronze, Greece, and legs and feet of iron, the fourth kingdom Rome and its final form of ten toes or ten kings." He leaned back, awaiting Glen’s reply. He was confident that his answer was correct. Still, Glen said nothing as his eyes swept the room.

Then the left hand of the lady using the braille chart was up and waving. Glen walked to her chair and spoke directly to her. “Yes, Miss?” “Five!” she replied . There was a chorus of murmurs, “Five?”

Glen turned to the man in the back row. “Sir, you gave a flawless explanation of the kingdoms represented in the image, but the question was, how many kingdoms are in the dream? You neglected to include the smiting stone.” He looked over at the lady who had answered “Five”. The fingers of her right hand still rested on the raised outline of the smiting stone. Its label read, “The Kingdom of God”.

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