Scripture Reading: Daniel 3:1-7
“King Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold whose height was sixty cubits and its breadth six cubits. He set it up on the plain of Dura, in the province of Babylon.” (Daniel 3:1)
King Nebuchadnezzar had become the most powerful man in the world. He ruled the greatest nation that existed at that time. His power and position caused him to think way too highly of himself. He had an enormous statue built. This statue was a monument to himself. At certain times during the day when certain musical instruments were played, all the people under his rule were to worship his golden image. This shows what a proud and arrogant man Nebuchadnezzar had become. He had put himself in the place of God.
Notice that this statue was similar to the one Nebuchadnezzar had seen in his dream (chapter 2). The parts of the statue were made up of different elements — its head gold, its chest and arms silver, its middle and thighs bronze, its legs iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of clay. God revealed the meaning of the king’s dream to Daniel. The head which was made of gold represented King Nebuchadnezzar (2:38). The other parts of the statue represents other kings and kingdoms that were to come.
When Daniel gave the interpretation of the dream to Nebuchadnezzar, he said, “You, O king, the king of kings, to whom the God of heaven has given the kingdom, the power, and the might and the glory…You are the head of gold (2:37,38). Nebuchadnezzar acknowledged that Daniel’s God was indeed the God of gods and the the Lord of kings (2:47).
It is amazing how quickly Nebuchadnezzar had forgotten what he had said. Now he was making himself the Lord of kings and demanding that people worship him. When the king had his statue built, it was made of pure gold, just like the head of gold in his dream. He did this to assert that there would be no other kingdoms after his. He openly denied what God had revealed to him in the dream. He was claiming that his kingdom was the greatest and that it would stand forever.
Nebuchadnezzar, like many other powerful people, was filled with pride and self grandeur. Such arrogant leaders attempt to put themselves in the place of God. But we must remember the words of Psalm 2 — “The kings of the earth set themselves, the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord and against His anointed, saying, ‘Let us burst their bonds apart and cast their cords from us'” (Psalm 2:2,3). But notice God’s reaction to their rebellious words — “He who sits in the heavens laughs; the Lord holds them in derision. Thus He will speak to them in His wrath, and terrify them in His fury, saying, ‘As for Me, I have set My King on Zion, My holy hill…Serve the Lord with fear and rejoice with trembling. Do homage to the Son, lest He be angry, and you perish in the way; for His wrath is quickly kindled'” (Psalm 2:4-6, 11,12).
Lord Jesus, You are the only King of kings and Lord of lords. I pray for our nation’s leaders that they would acknowledge Your divine authority over them. I pray for those who have become powerful in the eyes of men, that they will remain humble servants. Lord Jesus, I do homage to You, for I know that You are the King that rules over all Your creation.
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