Daniel 7:1-3, 15-18
“But the holy ones of the Most High shall receive the kingdom and possess the kingdom forever—forever and ever.” vs. 18
The book of Daniel was likely one of the last writings to be included in what is commonly called the Old Testament. It’s a collection of stories featuring a young Jew named Daniel along with a series of apocalyptic visions. Like the book of Revelation in the New Testament it was put together at a time of intense persecution and was intended to give hope to those who read it. In this passage, Daniel has written down a scary dream about beasts rising out of the sea and seeks an interpretation that can wring truth from the vision. He is told that the beasts represent kings who will seek to dominate but that the holy ones of God need not fear–their kingdom will last forever. Most apocalyptic passages in the bible have this as a central message but our tendency is to focus on the scary visions. Again and again preachers go to these old passages to lift out the most frightening scenarios and then apply them to the present age. And people listen! It’s as though there is some Halloween gene locked into our DNA that causes us to embrace the macabre–a lot of us just adore haunted houses and chainsaw massacres–and we’re drawn to the beasts and dragons of Daniel and Revelation. But the truth of those old metaphors is always the story of victory–good triumphs over evil and God’s kingdom is ours forever.
Thought for the Day: Why do people love Halloween?