Do you get overwhelmed by some of the Bible’s Old Testament prophecies? I confess, it can be quite confusing and definitely, overwhelming! Thank God for good teachers and scholars who have gone before us to study and explain the Scriptures so we understand. I hear my Bible study teacher spends something like 20 hours a week in the Word of God preparing to teach us. She teaches about fifty women weekly from the Scriptures. The insight I have gained sitting under her teaching is invaluable!
Daniel 11:32 NASB
“By smooth words he will turn to godlessness those who act wickedly toward the covenant, but the people who know their God will display strength and take action.”
Recently, we have been going through the book of Daniel. Apparently, Daniel 11:1-35 was all prophesied to Daniel before it happened. Yet most of that section has already happened…even though part of it might foreshadow the end times yet to come. Yes, I know that’s confusing. Anyway, figuring out some of this prophecy has been fascinating! Allow me to share just a little with you here.
So most of Daniel 11 is about the rulers of Syria (to the north) and Egypt (to the south). However, this is important, because Israel is in between. So when Syria and Egypt fight, Israel is affected! Remember, that’s where God’s chosen people lived and worshiped Him.
Eventually, a man named Antiochus IV Epiphanes became king of Syria. Many called him a mad man. He especially did not like the Jews and their worship of a single God. He did horrible things to their temple. He even persuaded some of the Jews to turn against God, as our verse above explains. However, not every Jew was deceived! A man named Maccabee led many Jews to fight against this Antiochus IV who was destroying their religion. “The people who know their God will display great strength and take action” refers to this Maccabean revolt (Daniel 11:32)!
I won’t ruin the ending for you, but know that a remnant remained faithful to the Lord. Do you worry about that today? Does it sometimes seem as though many Christians even are being led astray by “smooth words” and are turning to “godlessness”? Is it disheartening? Do not be discouraged, Friend! Stand firm! The Lord your God is with you (Zephaniah 3:17)! If you find yourself discouraged by where the world, or even the church, is headed, remember two things. One, God has foretold it all, just as He did these Bible prophecies. Also, remember to stand firm because God is still with you! Be a part of the remnant, not a part of the deceived! Pray to that end. In Jesus Name, Amen!
This is an excerpt taken from my upcoming Daily Devotional, 365 Living Words.