Friday, September 05, 2008

What Happens Next (3) Human Political Power Dies

The book of Daniel is not a description of events leading up to the second coming. This is confirmed in Daniel 7:13,14.

One like a Son of Man was coming,
And He came up to the Ancient of Days
And was presented before Him.
And to Him was given dominion,
Glory and a kingdom.
Jesus is the Son of Man. This is his ascension and enthronement. He came into the presence of the Father. He was given the power and authority he had earned through this death and resurrection. This is not the second coming. Daniel did not see a vison of the second coming.

The purpose of Daniel ‘s revelation is to describe how God will remove all political power from both the world, and more importantly how he will drive it human hearts, so that the Holy Spirit can bring in the Kingdom of God. This is clear in Daniel 7. The climax of the chapter and the entire book is:
Then the sovereignty, power and greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven will be handed over to the saints, the people of the Most High. His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, and all rulers will worship and obey him (Dan 7:27).
This is not a description of the second coming. It is actually reads like the fulfilment of the Great Commission.
All sovereignty in heaven on earth has been given to me. When the Holy Spirit has renewed the hearts of all the nations, teach them to obey what I have commanded you.
Our commission was also the Holy Spirit’s commission. Daniel’s vision describes what must happen before the Holy Spirit can complete the commission he was assigned. It describes how opposition to the kingdom of God will be swept away.

Once we get this, we can understand what the vision is about. Human political power manifests in various ways that always lead to disaster. A great rush of hubris climaxes in an effort to create the ideal human government and spread its influence throughout the world. Unfortunately, for those who trust human political power, which is most people in the world, this last grand endeavour collapses into a chaos that leaves the world totally disillusioned with what man can do and opens their hearts to the better way of the kingdom of God.

When I see Daniel’s vision being fulfilled, I get excited because I know that we are getting close to the time when all political power will be swept away. That will be messy for those who have trust political power, but it will free up the Holy Spirit to complete his work and bring in the Kingdom of God.

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