Category

Against the Flow

Against the Flow of Time (Daniel 10-12)

By | Against the Flow, Talks

For his entire adult life, Daniel has had to trudge through the mud and darkness of Exile. Sometimes, he experienced immediate – even miraculous – rescue when he was in trouble. Other times, like near the end of this book, we find Daniel mourning over what’s happening to God’s people. And in this troubled time, God sends a messenger to Daniel to pull back the curtain of reality and give Daniel a glimpse into what God is doing both in our world and in the heavenly realm. In this talk, Philip unpacks for us the great hope that Daniel would have glimpsed in all of God’s plans: how all the sorrow, darkness, futility and evil of the Exile will ultimately be swallowed up in victory when God raises to life all those who now sleep in the dust of the earth.

 

Praying A Promise (Daniel 8-9)

By | Against the Flow, Talks

God gives Daniel a vision of a goat and shaggy ram and a lot of horns. The point being: things aren’t going to get easier for God’s people any time soon. But Daniel remembers God’s promise in Jeremiah, that the exile would last for seventy years, and that a new covenant was coming. Even though God’s people were promise breakers, God would make a new covenant in Christ that would make their hearts new and give them true righteousness.

Apocalypse Now (Daniel 7)

By | Against the Flow, Talks

Daniel has a terrifying dream of four wild beasts. After they appear,  the Ancient of Days takes his seat, and one like a Son of Man comes on the clouds of heaven to receive an everlasting dominion. Jesus Christ would later speak these words of himself, that he would come on the clouds of heaven to defeat the kingdoms of the world and reign forever. By trusting and living in him, people could become truly human again.

Into the Lions’ Den (Daniel 6:1-28)

By | Against the Flow, Talks

Now an old man, Daniel is still standing faithfully against the accusations of the Babylonian rulers. Meanwhile, King Darius has to stand faithfully by his own law, and throw Daniel into the lions’ den. In this scene we see a glimmer of the true Daniel who was to come–one who would be falsely accused, sent to his death, but brought back from the tomb by the power of God–Jesus Christ, the one who was raised to life for all who trust in his name.

Heavenly Graffiti (Daniel 5)

By | Against the Flow, Talks

Daniel 5 – The one where a hand appears out of nowhere and writes words on a wall

A King Humbled (Daniel 4:1-37)

By | Against the Flow, Talks

We’ve heard God speaking into Nebuchadnezzar’s life time and time again, but the penny still hasn’t dropped for him. After all that God has done to humble him, Nebuchadnezzar still stands over Babylon and says: “Is not this great Babylon, which I have built by my mighty power as a royal residence and for the glory of my majesty?” So God gives him the ultimate humbling: to make him like a beast. After this, Nebuchadnezzar is finally humbled before God, and acknowledges his everlasting kingdom. We each struggle with pride in some way, and just like Nebuchadnezzar, we need God to humble us before we can cry out to the eternal king.

Living Through the Fire (Daniel 3:1-30)

By | Against the Flow, Talks

Three kids stand up against the king’s command, and refuse to bow down to a golden statue. Because of this, the king explodes in rage, and throws them all into a fiery furnace. In these flames, the true and living God meets them, and saves them from death.

Living With True Perspective (Daniel 2:1-49)

By | Against the Flow, Talks

In a time when God’s people were living in a foreign land, they needed a greater perspective. And God chose to give them this perspective through the dream of the Babylonian king. The dream showed that kingdom after kingdom would rise and fall, and only God’s kingdom would reign forever. This is the perspective that would give God’s people the courage to live boldly in a foreign land.

Living on the Line (Daniel 1:8-21)

By | Against the Flow, Talks

When Daniel and his friends were asked to dine at the king’s table, they took a stand and refused. It was a fairly small matter, but their faithfulness with this small matter prepared them to be faithful in the face of death later in life. For us, this can open up any number of challenges of faithfulness in our lives. As God’s people we aren’t called to assimilate, but we aren’t called to withdraw either. We’re called to live in a foreign land, depending on the wisdom of God. To know when to take a stand, and how to be a blessing to the world around us.

Living in a Foreign Land (Daniel 1:1-7)

By | Against the Flow, Talks

Sixty years ago, Australia had claims to being a “Christian country.” But today, any claim to Christendom has well and truly died. So how should God’s people live in a foreign land? The book of Daniel is an emergency toolkit to help us answer this question. In the first talk in our series, we hear how Daniel and his friends were dropped in the deep end of a foreign culture, and were pressed to turn away from their God.