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Welcome to the Westside church’s special Monday Morning Coffee podcast with Mark Roberts. Mark is a disciple, a husband, father and grand dad, as well as a certified coffee geek, fan of CS Lewis’ writings and he loves his big red Jeep. He’s also the preacher for Westside church.
Hello, and welcome to the Westside churches special Monday Morning Coffee podcast on this podcast, our preacher Mark Roberts will help you get your week started right. With look back at yesterday's sermon so that we can think through it further and better work the applications into our daily lives . Mark will then look forward into this week's Bible reading so that we can know what to expect and watch for. And, he may have some extra bonus thoughts from time to time. So grab a cup of coffee as we start the week together on Monday Morning Coffee with Mark.Speaker 3:
Good morning. Good morning. Welcome to the Monday Morning Coffee podcast for Monday, September the fourth. It's Labor Day. I'm Mark . I'm holding a great cup of coffee. I've got sermon notes from yesterday's sermon. I'm looking at the book of Daniel and mostly I'm just excited that it seems almost sort of like it was fall over the weekend. I got to go dove hunting on Friday. The beginning of Dove season is always September the first, and it was in the seventies and it was amazing. And of course, now that I say the word fall, I look at the forecast and I think it's supposed to be a hundred a couple times this week already. So maybe fall doesn't mean a whole lot yet when it's September in Texas, but we can at least hope. How about that? And we can look at the sermon from yesterday and think more about that because that's a big key part of yesterday's lesson on the Holy Spirit. And then we can think about some very brave young men in the book of Daniel. Let's get started. Let's talk about the sermon from yesterday especially because it's the first sermon in a series I'm calling Unzipped. If you're familiar with those emoticons, there's that smiley face that has his lips zipped, and that's where the title for this series came from . This is about things that we just don't talk about, especially we don't talk about enough in the pulpit, or at least that's per the perception that some people have. In the coffee and conversations event that we had for our college age students during our youth lectures, there were some questions and there was some talk about various topics and and there was some asking, Hey, how come we don't ever hear a sermon about this? And how come we don't ever hear a sermon about the Holy Spirit? So that's where this came from. And I just wanna circle back around to one of the major major points that I wanted to make yesterday. Sometimes you'll hear somebody say, say it louder for the people in the back. That's kind of an internet thing. And so I'm just gonna say this louder for the people in the back as as I look at what people think about the Holy Spirit. And as we look at charismatic groups and their emotional frenzy, it seems to me that all too often we feel like we're missing something. They know something we don't know. And that if we could just get a slice of that, we could have this incredible emotional uplift that they seem to be having. And what that reminds me of is when Israel arrived in the Promised Land and they watched people go to the Church of Baal, look what's happening over there. There's a lot if you read about, if you read about the idle practices associated with bail , it will absolutely curl your hair. 'cause there was so much sexual perversion and just crazy going on with all of that. But of course, those rights were for fertility rights that were designed to bring in a great crop. And here comes Israel, and they're in the land of Canaan and they're farming now, and they're looking over at the Philistines, they're looking over at the Canaanites who are doing that Baal thing. And what are they thinking? Those people know something we don't know we need . We need to be doing that. And of course, it was very enticing because that was an enjoyable way to quote unquote worship. And so the next thing you know, the Israelites are involved in idolatry. And most of the problems it seems to me that we have with the Holy Spirit comes because we are convinced the Pentecostal charismatic view of the spirit is correct. And we're trying to get some of that somehow and biblically that's just about as far from the truth as it can possibly be. Those folks can't teach us anything about the spirit. We need to be teaching them about the work of the Spirit through the word, especially that's the spirit's favorite tool. And that the Holy Spirit is not designed to give you some kind of emotional experience, lift you up, transport you to a higher P of spirituality. None of that is found in scripture. We need to let that go. Quit thinking over there. They know something we don't know. No they don't. Let's read our Bible and be content with what the Bible says about the Holy Spirit. And I hope that worked for you and helped you in yesterday's sermon unzipped. Why don't we ever hear a lesson about the Holy Spirit? Open your Bible now and let's let the Holy Spirit tell us about captivity and Babylon with Daniel and his three friends. Let's do some daily Bible reading This week for our daily Bible reading. We are mostly in Daniel chapter three on Friday. We'll start Daniel four, but this is Shadrach , Meshach , and Abednego week. And we will read Daniel the third chapter in little bites each day, a little bit of this chapter, maybe the thing to do, this would be a great week. Just read the whole chapter every day. The more you read, the more you will see in the chapter. As you become more and more familiar with the storyline, then you can start to see some of the details and some of the things that the Holy Spirit has placed here that help us understand what's going on and the message that God wants us to get from what's going on. So today, Monday we're reading Daniel chapter three verses one to seven. And this is the account of course, of Nebuchadnezzar in building or having constructed, I don't guess Nebu Nebuchadnezzar was out there doing a whole lot of hammering, having constructed a giant image of gold. There is speculation that maybe this is born out of the dream in Daniel chapter two because he's the head of gold and and that may certainly be the case, but the text repeatedly will say, made or set up. Made or set up. And this really comes down to who is God? Is it God or is it a manmade image? So just underlining your Bible made and set up , and you'll start to see that theme jump off of the page. And it is possible, particularly with the emphasis on everybody doing this, that Nebuchadnezzar is more than just demanding some kind of religious devotion in setting up an idol, which that's certainly going on. But he's using this to unify his people. And political leaders love to use religion to accomplish their purposes. So maybe think of it in those kinds of terms. Everybody's doing this, this is what all the Babylonians do, this is what all the good Babylonians do, which would make Chadrick Meshach in bed and go refusal to do this even more significant. The other thing that that I would say here is someone's gonna ask, where's Daniel? And the answer is, we do not know this. We, we just don't know where Daniel is. He could have been traveling on government business. He might've been ill. I think a wonderful option here is that he is so powerful, they don't dare charge him. So he's not worshiping. But well , we can't, we can't go after that guy. We'll go after these lesser guys and and so maybe that's where that really is. I would say this modern Bible critics, those who do not accept particularly the prophetic sections of Daniel as being exactly that inspired of God prophecy. We'll talk more about that when we get to Daniel chapter seven. They're gonna say that this was written during the Maccabean period that the book of Daniel was constructed much later after the events that it so-called forecast. I'm using that term with some air quotes there. And so it very, very common for scholars to say, this was written like in one 50 BC 150 years before Christ instead of when it was written during the Babylonian captivity 6 0 5, something like that. Well, here's a good place to realize this is not written during the Maccabean struggle because if it was Daniel would be in the story, Daniel would be in the story story. If people are just, somebody sat down and is writing some stories to encourage the Maccabean PE people during their struggle against the Syrian forces, and let's get everybody to buck up and we're gonna tell legendary tales of courage, then it would be Daniel shattering Meha , a bed to go. If you're making things up, you would definitely put Daniel in the story. Daniel's not in the story, we don't know why he's not in the story. But again, that would attest to the authenticity of this particular story. So the image is set up, it is a monster image. This thing is like 90 feet tall, and that may mean that it's kind of an olis . Uh oh, I said that terribly obelisk , kinda like the Washington Monument maybe with stylized features and so forth. But thinking of it as an obelisk may help you otherwise it , it's not very wide. It's only like nine feet wide at the base and 90 feet tall. It would be really odd as a statue. So maybe an obelisk , which I'm having trouble saying would, would be a better way to conceive of what's going on here. So the titles that is given over and over again, sat trap , prefects, governor's, counselors , treasures, justice Magistrates, and all the officials of the provinces, all of that shows how well organized the Babylonian government was and that everybody is on board with this. Again, this could be a politically unifying move. And of course if you don't play by Nebuchadnezzar's rules, you'll get tossed into the burning fiery furnace. And that is not unheard of in Jeremiah chapter 29 verses 21 and 23 , uh, verses 21 to 23, 2, false prophets are mentioned as having been roasted by the king of Babylon. So that kind of thing can actually happen. And as far as all of these musical instruments which are just listed again and again and again and again, we're not even certain how to translate those words. So can't be sure what all's going on there. I love that in the E S V , they have the bagpipe, which just makes me think of a guy in a kilt walking down the middle of this, blowing away on his bagpipe. And that of course is completely not true, but it's kind of a fun image more tomorrow as we continue in the story of Chadrick Meshach into bed to go , we've got the image set up. What are Jewish captives going to do about this? We'll read that on Tuesday. Welcome to Tuesday's Bible reading, maybe after Labor Day, you're trying to double up and get all of the reading. And that's not gonna be difficult to do this week. We just read seven verses yesterday, or like I said in the podcast yesterday, it's a great week to just read the whole chapter every single day. But today's reading is from Daniel, the third chapter verses eight to 15. And as we start, look at verse eight, those Chaldeans , that could be the astrologers and wise men who in chapter two, Daniel saved their lives. And now you can hear some jealousy , some professional jealousy going on. Verse 12, certain Jews, a little racism is happening here and they don't serve your gods or worship the golden image that you've set up. And Nebuchadnezzar is just losing his mind about this, especially because in Nebuchadnezzar's mind, if we triumphed over you, our gods are stronger than your gods. So it's just nonsensical for you not to bow in ob to the stronger gods. That's what would be working here. That's what he would be concerned about. And verse 15 ends here with the promise of who is the God who will deliver you out of my hands? And that is what we need to pay attention to. 'cause here Nebuchadnezzar has converted this into a confrontation, not between him and Chadrick, Meshach and de Bendigo, but a confrontation between him and Jehovah. It does remind us of Pharaoh in the book of Exodus, who is Jehovah God that I should serve him, don't want to do what he says. And Nebu kez , Israel looks at Chadrick, Meshach and de Bendigo and says, there isn't anybody gonna be able to help you here. No God, my Gods are the strongest. No God can deliver you. And now shattering Meshach and a bed , Togo need to think about that. And this is a great place to be reminded. This is not a children's story. This is when you think about it, pretty gruesome stuff. These guys are going to be roasted alive by the king. That's not fun, that's not funny. That's not for little kids. Chadrick , Meshach and Abednego are about to make a decision that could cost them their lives. What will they say in answer to Nebu or tomorrow's reading will give us that answer? See you on Wednesday. It is hump day, it is Wednesday. And today we read Daniel chapter three verses 16 to 23. And this is the part where it gets good. Shadrach , Meshach and Abednego just do a fabulous job here. They do not question God's existence and they do not question God's will. And they do not question God's power. What they say is, we don't always know what God's going to do and he may in fact deliver us, but it doesn't matter what God decides to do either for us or maybe he lets us be burned in the fiery furnace, that that's not gonna change the fact of God's existence. And it isn't going to change that we won't worship your idol. It's incredible. They're not arrogant, they're not mean, but it is clear they do not worship and serve God just because he's valuable and helpful to them. And so now, hey, I can get further along in my career in Babylon with the Babylonian God. So I'm ditching Jehovah and I'm all about the golden image. They also clearly do not just serve God because it is convenient to them. I this is our hometown God, everybody here's doing it. This is no . Now it's a matter of conviction or convenience. And they stand on conviction. Give you a little note here, verse 19, love the podcast able to tell you stuff like this. Verse 19, Nebuchadnezzar was filled, filled with fury, and the expression of his face was changed against chadrick, micha indigo. The word expression there is the word image, the word that's been repeatedly used. Golden image. Set up the golden image, set up the image. And so the idea here is that the one I'm reading from a Bible scholar, the one who in his pride has created an image with the purpose of assuring uniform loyalty, finds his own image provoked beyond his ability to control. Nebuchadnezzar can't control the expression of his face. His image is changed. And so here comes disaster for chadrick , mha and Abednego. By the way, verse 21, the clothing there, very difficult to translate those words. It's like the instruments of music. We're not sure exactly. I love here. E s V has cloaks, tunics and hats, which I just see Shadrach Meshach in a bed to go . They got the old ball cap on, we're just good to go. Not sure exactly what's going on there. And they are tossed into the burning fiery furnace. Verse 23. This is the place where in the apocryphal books, the additions of Daniel, there is a prayer inserted here, which the three men pray as they're being tossed to their certain death and doom. That prayer is not part of scripture. And in fact, at Kuran where the Itsy scrolls were found, those scrolls, the oldest copies that we have of the Old Testament, those scrolls do not contain that prayer. But I am sure verse 23, you have to know they were praying when this awful thing was about to happen to them. Tomorrow, the end of the story, I'll see you on Thursday. It is Thursday, and today we read Daniel chapter three, verse 24 to 30 . King Nebuchadnezzar, of course, is astonished to see four in the fiery furnace when they threw three guys in there. And everyone's gonna ask, who is the fourth one? And someone's gonna say, well, of course it's Jesus Christ. And many early Christian commentators certainly advance the idea that this is Jesus, the pre-incarnate Christ with Chadrick , Neha and Bendigo. But please notice the Bible doesn't say that. I think there's, I think that's a persuasive option. But again, the Bible doesn't say that this is a good place to make sure that we're reading the Bible properly. It's just very easy to like what's just Jesus is it? The Bible doesn't say that. And in fact, in the Old Testament, you get a lot of places where you get an angel appearing and sometimes that angel is a manifestation of God. I'm thinking about the angel of the Lord that wrestles with Jacob. In Genesis, the 32nd chapter. There are some other places. There's the appearance and the burning bush of the flame of fire. In Exodus the third chapter, there are appearances of God throughout the Old Testament. This is clearly an the appearance of a divine being of some sort, an angelic being. Maybe it is Jesus, I, I'm okay with that. I don't have any problem with that. But again, the Bible doesn't say that specifically. What is important here is verse 28 and 29 that Nebuchadnezzar completely reverses course all of his blasphemy, who's there's no God that's gonna be able to save you is now replaced with adoration for the true God, for the God of Shadrach , Meshach outta bed to go for verse 29. For there is no other God who's able to rescue in this way. And I think once again, maybe as we come to the close of our reading, we see God's interest in foreign peoples. God is teaching Nebuchadnezzar, who is the true God. He's had two looks at this now. He's had two looks at this. Nebuchadnezzar that sets up chapter four, maybe. Maybe I'm a little less patient with Nebuchadnezzar in chapter four after he's learned so much about God already. Tomorrow we start chapter four in the book of Daniel. And we can think more about that. See you on Friday. It is Friday and we are starting the fourth chapter of Daniel today. This is a powerful chapter. Let's put this all together for Nebuchadnezzar in the preceding chapter, God's power to Save His scene . This chapter now focuses on God's power to humble the rulers of this world. And there are those who would attack the historicity of this chapter by saying There's no Babylonian records . Speaking of nebu, there's madness. But is that the kind of thing that a Babylonian king would write down? Of course not. There actually is a fragmentary unifor text that does seem to refer to some kind of mental disorder on Nebuchadnezzar's part and maybe his neglecting and even leaving Babylon. So as the archeologist spade keeps working more and more, the Bible is verified. We know that from about 5 82 to 5 73, there were no major Babylonian military operations. How interesting is that? And the passage opens and closes with the praise of God. And we may be asking, how could Nebuchadnezzar be the guy to say that? Well, he can say that 'cause he's learned. God has taught him. He learned in chapter two that the God of the Hebrews could make dreams known. And then he learned in chapter three that the God of the Hebrews could deliver his people, but he had not learned that his own station comes from God. So we read this amazing chapter, and maybe you're asking in verse six, how could Nebuchadnezzar forget about Daniel? How could he forget who really has the power to reveal dreams? This is where sometimes the way we read the Bible isn't doing us a favor. We just read all this history, bang, bang, bang, bang, bang. Like it all happened in 15 minutes. But it has probably been 25 to 30 years since Daniel interpreted the dream in the second year of his reign , and maybe as much as 10 to 15 years since the miracle of the deliverance of Shadrach , Meshach and AB Bendigo in the burning fiery furnace. So there's been some time , some water's running under the bridge. Lots of different things can happen and a king can forget those events from long ago. The other thing that I would point you at, point you to is in verse eight at last, Daniel came in before me, in whom is the spirit of the holy gods in the Old Testament, having the spirit of God is closely associated with and usually signifies God empowering you to do supernatural deeds. If you do a search on filled with the Spirit, you will see in the Old Testament, people are filled with the spirit so they can do the will of God. Usually something special, something unusual for the Lord. And so here in verse eight, we get that same idea, Daniel, by the power of God is going to be able to help Nebuchadnezzar, that'll hold us for our reading today, Daniel four, one to eight. We'll pick up more of this amazing story in our Bible reading next week. Thank you for listening to the podcast this week. If you like the Monday Morning Coffee podcast, we hope that you are subscribing or following it, and we would really love for you to rate and give a review on whatever app you're listening on that helps more people find the podcast. So until next week, I hope that your Friday is wonderful, that the Lord will be with you today all day. I'll see you on Monday with a cup of coffee.Speaker 1:
Thanks for listening to the Westside church of Christ podcast. Monday morning coffee with mark . For more information about west side , you can connect with us through our website, just christians.com and our Facebook page. Our music is from upbeat.is that's upbeat with two P'S UPP , B E A T , where creators can get free music. Please share our podcast with others. And we look forward to seeing you again with a company coffee, of course, on next Monday.