ADULT SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON DANIEL S SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON DANIEL’S PRAYER ... have not made our prayer before the LORD our God, that we might turn from

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1 March 10, 2013 ADULT SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON DANIELS PRAYER MINISTRY INVOCATION Almighty God: Our existence is predicated on Your Love for us and for that we are humbled as well as blessed. There is No One greater than You. In Jesus Name, Amen. WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW AND UNDERSTAND The purpose of prophecy is to speak the Word of God to the people who need it. The people to whom Daniel was writing needed to hear that their captivity would not last forever. God would come to their rescue in His time and return them back to their homeland. THE APPLIED FULL GOSPEL DISTINCTIVE We believe in the indwelling of the Holy Ghost for all believers and that the Holy Ghost verifies and validates the Believer as part of the Body of Christ. TEXT: Background Scripture Daniel 9:3-19 Key Verse Daniel 9:9 Lesson Scripture Daniel 9:4-14 (NKJV) 4 And I prayed to the LORD my God, and made confession, and said, O Lord, great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and mercy with those who love Him, and with those who keep His commandments, 5 we have sinned and committed iniquity, we have done wickedly and rebelled, even by departing from Your precepts and Your judgments. 6 Neither have we heeded Your servants the prophets, who spoke in Your name to our kings and our princes, to our fathers and all the people of the land. 7 O Lord, righteousness belongs to You, but to us shame of face, as it is this dayto the men of Judah, to the inhabitants of Jerusalem and all Israel, those near and those far off in all the countries to which You have driven them, because of the unfaithfulness which they have committed against You. 8 O Lord, to us belongs shame of face, to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, because we have sinned against You. 9 To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness, though we have rebelled against Him. 10 We have not obeyed the voice of the LORD our God, to walk in His laws, which He set before us by His servants the prophets. 11 Yes, all Israel has transgressed Your law, and has departed so as not to obey Your voice; therefore the curse and the oath written in the Law of Moses the servant of God have been poured out on us, because we have sinned against Him. 12 And He has confirmed His words, which He spoke against us and against our judges who judged us, by bringing upon us a great disaster; for under the whole heaven such has never been done as what has been done to Jerusalem. 2 13 As it is written in the Law of Moses, all this disaster has come upon us; yet we have not made our prayer before the LORD our God, that we might turn from our iniquities and understand Your truth. 14 Therefore the LORD has kept the disaster in mind, and brought it upon us; for the LORD our God is righteous in all the works which He does, though we have not obeyed His voice. COMMENTARY ADORATION (9:4) Daniels mind was filled with the Word of God, and this fact is reflected in his prayer, which contains many allusions to earlier Old Testament passages. This prayer is a model for believers today as they approach God. After a brief introduction (v. 4a) it proceeds with adoration of the Lord (v. 4b), is followed by confession of personal and national sin (vv. 514), and concludes with the prophets petition (vv. 1519). Here is the proper order, for only after the Lord is praised and sin confessed is the believer qualified to offer requests to the holy God. 9:4a Prayed is emphatic in the Hebrew, suggesting the fervency of the supplication. Daniel addressed his petition to the LORD. LORD is the translation of the Hebrew Yahweh, the particular name of Israels God. Although this name emphasizes the personal nature of the prayer, primarily it seems to have been chosen because this was a petition offered on behalf of the Jewish people. The name Yahweh was associated early with the gracious, covenant-keeping God of Israel and Daniels use of the appellation would in itself be a reminder to God of His relationship to His people. Yahweh was about to be asked to keep the covenant promises He had made to Israel. Daniel addressed Yahweh as my Godthe basis upon which he was able to approach the Lord with his requests. He was a child of God. Specifying Yahweh as my God also emphasizes that Daniel rejected the false idols of Babylon; his God was Yahweh. 9:4b Daniel praised and adored his great God. He began by emphasizing Yahwehs sovereignty, addressing him as Lord (dny) and then calling Yahweh the great and awesome God. Awesome (nr) comes from a Hebrew root that means to fear, and thus the word means one who inspires fear. Gods greatness and power produce awe and wonder as frail human beings survey His works. Yahwehs faithfulness is set forth as Daniel referred to Him as the One who keeps His covenant of love with all who love Him and obey His commands. Since the point of Daniels prayer is that the Jews might return to their land and continue as a nation, the Abrahamic covenant must be in view, for it was in this covenant that God specifically promised Abraham a land and national 3 existence for his descendants, Israel. The love (esed) is that loyal love of God by which He faithfully keeps His promises to His people, in this case, those of the covenant. Daniel was appealing to Gods heart of love, and by designating Yahweh as the covenant-keeper, he also was tactfully reminding Yahweh of His promises to Israel, promises he was about to ask God to keep. The Lord does indeed make good on His covenant promises and showers His covenant love on all who love him and obey his commands. Daniel and the other faithful Israelites were part of this group who loved God and were faithful to His teachings. On behalf of the faithful, Daniel now appealed to God for mercy and restoration. Today, all those who have received Christ have entered into a covenant relationship with God and have become his spiritual children. Love and obedience to God demonstrate that one has entered into Gods family. God loves all of his children and faithfully keeps his promises to them now, just as he did to Israel long ago. CONFESSION (9:514) Daniel began to pour out his heart to God as he confessed his sin and the sin of his people Israel. Though he identified himself with his people, Daniel certainly had not been part of the rebellious majority, who had brought the wrath of God upon the nation. Six different aspects of Israels sin are set forth in vv. 56. Israel had sinned, done wrong, been wicked, rebelled, turned away from Yahwehs commands and laws and had not listened to Yahwehs prophets. What an indictment! 9:5 The Hebrew verb (sinned) basically means to miss the mark. Ethically speaking, sin is missing Gods mark or goal of holy living that is required for human beings. Israel as a nation had fallen short of Gods design to be a holy people. It appears to emphasize the fact that sin is something twisted or perverted or that one who sins has veered from the straight and narrow road and made his paths crooked. Words that express righteousness in the Old Testament generally have the primary meaning of straightness; thus to make ones paths crooked is sin. This veering from Gods prescribed path is condemned because it is deliberate. We have turned away, rather than being considered a separate sin, seems to describe the nature of Israels rebellion against God. Israel had rebelled against Yahweh by turning aside from and refusing to obey His commands and laws. It is not clear from vv. 56 whether by commands and laws Daniel was referring to Mosaic legislation or to instruction that either included or was the same as that which came from your servants the prophets in v. 6. Daniel also was thinking 4 of the Law of Moses. Therefore although Daniel referred to the penalties in the Mosaic law, he considered Israels sinful rebellion as against the totality of Gods instruction in the Scriptures, which he viewed as speaking with one unified, divine voice. 9:6 Yahweh had graciously sent his servants the prophets to exhort the people of Israel and their leaders to repent of their sins, but they refused to listen. Not all turned from the Lord, of course. The prophets were faithful, and others like Daniel and his friends remained true to the covenant. Nevertheless the nation as a wholeour kings, our princes and our fathers [ancestors], and all the people of the landhad turned its back upon God. 9:78 Daniel contrasted the righteousness of the Lord with the unfaithfulness of Israel. That Yahweh was punishing Israel for their unfaithfulness to Him was evident to all who observed the nations present deplorable condition. Israels shame was a result of their sins. This shame was the disgrace of the captivity and the destruction of the land of Israel. Israel was in a present state (this day) of disgrace that had continued since the days of the Babylonian conquests. Jerusalem was still in ruins, and the whole land was virtually desolate. Daniel was emphasizing the fact that Israels past sins were continuing to bring dishonor upon the nation. All of the Jews suffered this disgracethe men of Judah and people of Jerusalem and [or even] all Israel. None escaped. Daniel did not need to single out the people of Jerusalem since the men of Judah would include residents of the capital, but the prophet was stressing the fact that even the citizens of the holy city, the city of God, did not avoid this fate. Probably no greater humiliation could come upon a nation than that of being conquered by a foreign power and having its citizens expelled from the homeland. 9:9 This verse begins literally, To the Lord our God are the mercies and the forgiveness. In Hebrew, these plurals are intensive, emphasizing Gods great and manifold mercies and his abundant forgiveness. Even though Israel had rebelled (mrad) against him, there was yet hope because the sovereign Lord is merciful and forgiving. All persons have rebelled against God to varying degrees and need his mercy and forgiveness to be made right with him. 9:1011 Verses 1011a express similar thoughts to those found in vv. 56. Israel had been disobedient to Yahweh and refused to keep the laws delivered to the nation through his prophets. They had turned their backs upon the Lord. Because Israel had forsaken Gods law, they had experienced the curses and sworn judgments threatened by the covenant law. If taken in this manner, the translation would be the curse, even the sworn judgment. What was this curse? It was the sworn judgment spoken of in the Law of Moses for breaking the covenant. 5 Just as God had sworn, the curse had been poured out upon the nation like a flood. Hundreds of years earlier it had been written in the Law of Moses (v. 11) as a warning to Israel to remain faithful to the covenant. In Deut 28:15ff., the contents of this curse are recorded. It included poor crops, infertility, disease, lack of rain, defeat before enemies, and the most terrible penalty of all, expulsion from the land of Canaan. Daniel concluded v. 11 by again stating that the curse had come upon Israel because of its sin against God. 9:12 Yahweh had promised judgment upon all Israel (us and our rulers) if they broke his covenant. Now the predicted great disaster, the present exile, had come. As the Israelites considered their plight, they were reminded that God does not lie. Daniels statement regarding the uniqueness of Jerusalems destruction strikes us as surprising. Certainly, other nations had gone into captivity, and other cities and temples had been destroyed. Other nations had experienced defeat and deportation, but their gods were idols of lifeless wood, stone, and metal. Now the people of the true God were in exile, and his city and temple were in ruins. Truly, nothing like this had ever happened in history. 9:13 Daniel reiterated that the disaster that had befallen them was predicted in the law of Moses. The prophet grieved over the fact that even though this great disaster had come upon Israel just as it is written, the nation as a whole still had not repented. Giving attention means to listen and obey. Your truth speaks of Yahwehs true teachings. Turning from sins and obeying the Lord is a description of true repentance. 9:14 Did not hesitate to bring the disaster upon us literally reads watched [qad, to watch or wake] concerning [or over] the disaster and brought it upon us. The idea of God watching or waking concerning (or over) the disaster is difficult, but the meaning seems to be that Yahweh had kept the disaster ready (watched over it) in case Israel did not repent. Jeffery states that God forgot not the evil that was threatened as a consequence of sin. When Israel continued in sin, he brought the promised judgment to pass. Judgment fell because Yahweh is righteous in everything he does. Here it describes Yahwehs actions as just, for justice demanded that Israel be penalized for its crimes against God. The exile was deserved. RELATED DISCUSSION TOPICS CLOSING PRAYER O God: I am grateful to have found You and kept You in the forefront of my being. Bless us continually with Your grace and mercy. Amen.

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