Those who know their God shall do exploits
Text: Daniel 3; Daniel 11
Key Verse: Daniel 11:32b “… but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.” (KJV).
The Bible declares, “The people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.” That is a great promise and this is one of the most courageous verses in the Bible. This is referring to a courageous family within Israel, who lived between the Old and New Testaments—the Maccabees, who in 167 B.C. rebelled against Syria and gained freedom for the nation of Israel for the first time, since the Babylonian invasion and for the last time, until 1948.
The Jewish people have experienced some fierce persecutions through the centuries, but none worse than under Antiochus Epiphanes, the Syrian king who reigned from 175 to 164 B.C. He assumed the name Theos Epiphanes, which means “the manifest God.” But the Jews changed one letter in his name (in their language) and called him Epimanes, which means “mad man.” And mad he was! His hatred for the Jews was literally insane.
Daniel anticipated his reign prophetically in this eleventh chapter of the book. And he did exactly what Daniel predicted. He ordered the Jewish sacrifices to cease and polluted the temple of God by offering swine’s flesh on the altar. In addition, he prohibited the observance of the sabbath and the circumcision of children, ordered all copies of Scripture destroyed, set up idolatrous altars, commanded the Jews to offer unclean sacrifices, and insisted that they eat swine’s flesh. Anyone who disobeyed his edicts was sentenced to death. It was an ancient holocaust. As Daniel anticipated this atrocity, he asked himself how these people would ever be able to survive. The answer was not long in coming: “the people who know their God will display strength and take action” (11:32).
And that is exactly what they did. A group of courageous men, called the Maccabees, led a heroic revolt against Antiochus. Their exploits, against insuperable odds, were nothing short of phenomenal. They knew their God, laid hold of His sovereign power and might, took action, and broke Antiochus’ grip on Israel. Their story is a saga of strength, the mighty power of people who know God.
Daniel himself was a man who knew God. When the presidents and princes of the Medo Persian Empire prevailed upon King Darius to issue a decree prohibiting anybody from making petitions to any god or man except the king, or be cast into the lion’s den, Daniel went right on praying to the God of Heaven (Daniel 6:4-15). Not even the threat of death could keep him from it. He knew his God, and people who know God have the courage and strength to do His will, even though the whole world be against them and everybody around them be giving in to sin.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were men who knew God in Daniel Chapter 3. They could not bow before that golden image. When it became obvious that they had refused, they were brought before the king and given one last chance. They turned down the last chance, and refused to worship the golden image. They knew an all-powerful God, Who was able to deliver them. And they believed He would.
The Lord is looking for ordinary Christians through whom He can display His extraordinary nature. He wants to do mighty deeds that bear witness to the reality of who He is in us. God is raising up a people who will know Him intimately, who will be transformed into His image by beholding Him, and who will demonstrate mighty acts to manifest His power for the glory of His Name.
Are you a willing vessel to be used by God in these last days to reveal His Glory and Power to a dying world? God wants to do mighty things through your life. See, you need to break off this negative thinking through which you disqualify yourself from being used by God, based upon what you can or can’t do. God doesn’t want you to do what you can do by yourself; He wants to begin to do things through your life that only HE can do, where only He gets the glory.
Today’s Nugget: God is looking for ordinary Christians through whom He can display His extraordinary nature.
Prayer: Lord, use me to do exploits.
Prayer line: Send text only to 09078154261.
Dr. Chidi Okoroafor, General Superintendent, | Assemblies of God Nigeria