Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Be Strong

Dan. 10:19 "And he said, 'O man, greatly beloved, fear not. Peace be to you, be strong, yes be stong. So when He spoke to me I was strengthened..."

I love this. Now it is no longer Gabriel coming to Daniel. It is One who looks like the "sons of Man" (v16). Any guess as to who it probably was? The son of man, the One who met Shad, Mesh and Abed in the furnace. The One who is called the Son of Man in the N.T. - Jesus. It is my guess that the Son of Man - the Son of God met with Daniel and this time, instead of an angel telling Daniel that he was greatly loved, instead of an angel telling Daniel not to fear, it was Jesus. Amazing. God in the form of His Son came to Daniel and told him for the third time that he was "greatly beloved". The Son of God came and told Daniel not to fear. Only this time He added some stuff. He also said: "peace be to you". Shalom, quiet, tranquility, contentment, completeness be to you.

Kind of sounds like Jesus with His disciples in John 20:19: "Peace be with you." Here were these guys cowering in fear after the death of their Leader and He came to them after His resurrection and said the same thing that He said to Daniel, "Peace be to you."

So, once you have taken care of the fear thing. Once you have established peace, then what? "Be strong, yes be strong." He didn't say it once. He said it twice for emphasis. "Be strong. Be courageous. Be resolute. Prevail." These are not passive words. These are active words. Kill the fear, grab the peace and go out and prevail.

What a word for the church. What a word for me. In the middle of our world going through a financial crisis, Jesus comes to us as the church , He comes to me and says: "Fear not, peace be to you. Be strong." Look at this situation straight in the face and show the world where our confidence is. Not in Washington. Not in Wall Street. Not in our bank accounts. But in the One who give us this charge: "Fear not, peace be to you, be strong, yes be strong."

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