Daniel 5 (Part 8) Holy Vessels

Last week we began to study Daniel chapter 4 and to learn about a second dream that GOD gave to King Nebuchadnezzar as a warning to turn to HIM in repentance and obedience.  We learned that GOD can lift up whomever HE pleases but that HE can also bring us down.  We learned that one way for us to lose touch with GOD is losing touch with the poor and the need that is around us.  Today, we will understand that we must also see our need for GOD and how we can fall down when we fail to acknowledge HIM.

Handout: Daniel 5  Holy Vessels

As we begin Daniel chapter 5, please understand that thirty years have passed since the events of Daniel chapter 4 ended.  It’s been twenty-three years since King Nebuchadnezzar had passed away and there had been several different kings in that time period.  As Daniel chapter 5 opens, we learn that Belshazzar now sits on the throne as King of Babylon.  Note that in scripture Belshazzar is referred to as the son of Nebuchadnezzar, but is actually his grandson.  In scripture when someone is referred to as a son of someone it can mean a literal son or just someone from the lineage, such as JESUS also being called the son of David. 

Also I want you to understand as we begin this chapter, the Medes and the Persians have joined forces, just like GOD revealed to Daniel that they would to create a kingdom of silver and their troops are gathering closer and closer to Babylon in order to over take it.

So Cyrus The Great, the Medo-Persian Ruler is not far from the city, they are aware in Babylon that they are coming, however Belshazzar feels secure and is not worried because within the walls of Babylon, those amazing, thick walls, they have a twenty year food supply and the Euphrates river goes right through the city so they are not hurting at all for water. 

Scriptures open with King Belshazzar throwing a feast or party most likely to show that he is not worried and to boost the moral of his employees and the people of the city.  Let’s go to GOD’S Word and read.

Daniel 5:1-6 “ 1Belshazzar the king made a great feast to a thousand of his lords, and drank wine before the thousand. 2Belshazzar, whiles he tasted the wine, commanded to bring the golden and silver vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the temple which was in Jerusalem; that the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, might drink therein.
 3Then they brought the golden vessels that were taken out of the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, drank in them. 4They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone.
 5In the same hour came forth fingers of a man's hand, and wrote over against the candlestick upon the plaster of the wall of the king's palace: and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote. 6Then the king's countenance was changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints of his loins were loosed, and his knees smote one against another.”

There is always a set up, and a fall down.  Babylon had set itself up as a god and was great, but it was about to come crashing down.  All of this happened the night of the fall of the great city Babylon October 12, 539 B.C.
Belshazzar made a terrible mistake that night, he did a very horrible, scary thing.

Point 1. Belshazzar made the gravest mistake of treating the Holy as UnHoly!

Daniel 5:3 “3Then they brought the golden vessels that were taken out of the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, drank in them. 4They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone.”

If you will remember in Daniel 1:2 we read when the captives were taken from Judah, some of the Holy vessels had been taken from the temple as well.

Daniel 1:2 “2And the Lord gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, with part of the vessels of the house of God: which he carried into the land of Shinar to the house of his god; and he brought the vessels into the treasure house of his god.”

All the vessels had in storage throughout this time until now, we suddenly have a king with enough audacity to be partying and then tells someone to go get the Holy Temple articles of The GOD of Judah…HUGE MISTAKE!

Let’s go in GOD’S Word and find out why this was such a foolish mistake.  What was he touching when he brought forth the Holy and treated it as unholy.
Leviticus 8:10-11 “ 10And Moses took the anointing oil, and anointed the tabernacle and all that was therein, and sanctified them.11And he sprinkled thereof upon the altar seven times, and anointed the altar and all his vessels, both the laver and his foot, to sanctify them.”
Moses anointed everything and it had been consecrated, clean and set apart for GOD’S use only!  It was Holy unto The LORD!  GOD had said this about HIS Temple…
2 Chronicles 7:16 “ 16For now have I chosen and sanctified this house, that my name may be there for ever: and mine eyes and mine heart shall be there perpetually.”
GOD had chosen and consecrated everything in the temple…everything had been anointed by HIS HOLY presence. GOD HIMSELF made these things Holy and they were not to be used for any other purposes!
Now here Belshazzar so arrogantly takes what belongs to GOD, filled it up with his wine and used those Holy vessels to toast his false gods!    
Hebrews 10:31 “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God”
How foolish for Belshazzar to go get the Holy Vessels and do such a thing, but it wasn’t long before his arrogance was brought down!  He saw the handwriting on the wall…literally!  GOD said enough, and HE was not going to put up with this rebellion and blasphemy! 
You can believe when the hand of GOD began to write on the wall, the party was O v e r ! It came to a screeching Halt!   Can you imagine the faces of the ones there?   They must have been shocked. I’m certain you could hear a pin drop for a few seconds as the hand was writing.  Belshazzar knew that he had messed up Royally!
This will bring us to point to of this lesson and that is:
Point 2: We who are born again through are Holy Vessels that house GODS Holy Spirit!
2 Timothy 2:20-22 “ 20But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. 21If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master's use, and prepared unto every good work. 22Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.”
The Parallel is that we are vessels in the great House of GOD.  We have been sanctified by GOD through JESUS CHRIST and have been set apart for HIS use alone.
HE has made us into the kind of container that HE can present Himself and His SON to any kind of guest. 
You and I are not to be filled with anything other than GODS HOLY SPIRIT.  That is our only purpose and use, set apart for GOD.
Ephesians 1:1-4 “1Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus: 2Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. 3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
 4According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:”
HE sanctified/purified us and we are chosen to be Holy and blameless before GOD! We are the Saints of GOD.  What is a Saint?  A Saint is anyone who believes JESUS CHRIST is LORD unto salvation.  A saint has been made Holy unto The LORD.
1 Corinthians 3:16-17 “ 16Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 17If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.”
Verse 4 He chose us in Him to be Holy and blameless in His sight.
He chose us to be saints.  To Be holy, set apart. 
Lexical word- Haggios – holy sacred, separated from ordinary or common use.  Nothing ordinary about us. 
Sacred purpose.  Special significance marked as holy classified as belonging to GOD, sacred hallowed, consecrated. 
2 Corinthians 1:21-22 “   21Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God;
 22Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.”
He anointed us, set HIS seal of ownership upon us and put HIS spirit in our hearts. 
The LORD knows those who are HIS.  We have a visible mark upon us to the Heavenlies.  We are holy vessels in the House of The LORD.
Do you understand that you have been declared Holy?
God literally spoke out…and declared you and I as Holy and set His name on our souls so my question today to you would be, are you and I behaving wisely, or are we behaving as Belshazzar?  Do we treat ourselves as holy, or are we using this vessel to hold the unholy things of this world?  Are we using GODS holy vessel for unholy purposes? 
What are we filling this vessel with?  What are you watching on tv?  What are you looking at online?  What kind of music are you listening to and what kind of thoughts are you allowing your mind to dwell upon?  How are you treating the other holy vessels of GOD? 
Are we treating that which is holy, as unholy?  We will stop here and pray that you think on these things this week.  Next week we will look further into this and learn ways to treat ourselves as Vessels, Holy Unto The LORD!
Dear Righteous Father…
We come in thanksgiving today for who You are and to give You all praise because YOU ARE WORTHY.  Holy Father, we ask that You help us to understand that we are Holy to YOU and help us to not defile ourselves with sin and the things of this world but to continually be filled only with Your HOLY SPIRIT in which we were created to do.  We thank You…In JESUS name we pray…AMEN.

December 4, 2011