IMPENDING JUDGMENT

Scripture Reading: Daniel 5:24-29

“This is the interpretation of the matter: MENE, God has numbered the days in your kingdom and brought it to an end; TEKEL, you have been weighed in the balances and found wanting; PERES, your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians.” (Daniel 5:26-28)

God sent Belshazzar a message about His impending judgment upon Babylon — ‘MENE, MENE, TEKEL, AND PARSEN.” These were Aramaic words that form a sequence of weights descending from a mina to a shekel (which was 1/60 of a mina), to a half-shekel. It wasn’t that the king and his wise men couldn’t read these words, but they failed to understand the significance of them. Thus Daniel was called upon to interpret the meaning.

The meaning was clear to Daniel. God had numbered the days of King Belshazzar’s reign. His kingdom was coming to an end. Because of the king’s pride and blasphemy, God found him wanting. Thus the kingdom of Babylon was about to fall into the hands of the Medes and Persians.

God has made it clear that one day He will bring about a final judgment — “But by the same word the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly” (II Peter 3:7). When Jesus returns, He comes as Judge. “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne” (Matthew 24:31). All peoples will be brought before Him and He will pronounce His judgment upon the ungodly. We do not know when this will occur — “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed” (II Peter 3:10).

While God’s judgment is a terrifying thing to consider, we believers have nothing to dread, for Jesus has borne the judgment for us. The wrath of God was poured out upon our Savior as He became the atoning sacrifice for our sins. However, we must be ready for the coming judgment — “Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by Him without spot or blemish, and at peace” (II Peter 3:14).

Lord Jesus Christ, I know that a day of judgment is coming. You will return to this earth as Judge. Thank You that You bore the judgment of God for me and that I will never have to experience the wrath of Your Father. Let me live each day as if this is the day of Your second coming. You have enabled me to be found without spot or blemish because Your righteousness has been given to me. I know that I have peace with God through You. I will be able to stand secure in the judgment by Your grace.

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