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Meditations From the Elders, 10/9/2022

by The Elders

Islands In The Stream: How to endure and conquer in the midst of a pagan culture.

Text: Daniel 1:17-21
Date: 10/09/2022, the Combined service.
Series: "Meditations From the Elders" Part 6

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For the second Sunday of Pastor Kirby's vacation, Clayton Andrews reads this sermon in the morning service. We pick up this text after Daniel and his three friends have been kidnapped and taken to Babylon, where they are indoctrinated in the pagan culture and religion of the Chaldeans. Not only did they make it through, growing in physical strength and health, but they excelled intellectually in all their studies. We will consider the fact, however, that the knowledge they are excelling in is the witchcraft and false religion of Babylon! We will put this all into perspective as we see how God's hand has directed them and how faith has sustained them. We will glean valuable lessons from the text as we apply the principles of Daniel's success to the spiritual warfare that Christians and the church go through on a daily basis. And ultimately receive great encouragement as we learn to stand rock solid-- like islands in the stream, against the pagan culture that assails us. Afterwards, Elder Byron Cox will continue to bless us with a meditation on worship and hymnody.

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I. Introduction
II. Exposition of the text, Daniel 1:17-21.
A. Context
B. Conquering the Pagan court.
1. Equipped for victory, vs. 17.
a. The hand of God, Dan. 1:9,15.
b. Excelling in learning and wisdom.
c. A special gift.
d. Equipped for conquest and endurance.
i. A competitive environment.
ii. Probing the meaning of knowledge, Prov. 1:7.
iii. Knowledge that dominates and endures.
2. The final exam, vs. 18-20.
a. Appearing before the king, vs. 18.
b. Acing the exam, vs. 19.
c. The clash of knowledge, vs. 20, John 17:14-16.
3. Daniel's triumph, vs. 21.
III. Application
A. A positive approach.
B. Encouragement from Scripture.
C. Encouragement from the text.
1. Thriving in the midst of the stream.
2. Carefully choosing battles.
3. Fortified with true knowledge.
4. Islands that endure and conquer.
IV. Conclusion

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