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Illumination

Updated: Dec 7, 2021



“Man…requires illumination from…God, the ‘sun of man’s soul…’”[1]

The Massoretic text of Daniel 2:22 reads, “Revealing deep things and dark, and knowing the things which are in the darkness and the things which are in the light, and with him is a dwelling-place (κατάλυσις).”[2]


Do you get mentally, emotionally or physically exhausted sometimes?

This verse tells us we can find rest

by simply going to God and trusting Him to sort it out.


According to Daniel 2:22 (full definitions), God reveals (denudes, uncovers) the deep (unsearchable things in a man’s heart). The hidden things (designed to demolish him), God will expose (to save him). God knows (to know everything, in every sense, for all time) indefinitely what lies in darkness (the outer depths of distance, the pits bored deep with sin); and in light (illumination, wisdom) He continually dwells (frees; separates from; unravels unsolvable complexities and levels mazes; commences to travel beyond any obstacle; allows us to live with Him, without expiration).[3]


God already knows all about the problem, but He still wants you to tell Him about it.


He wants to hear your voice.

He cares what you think!


"'Dwelling-place' [in this verse] is a word that suggests 'solution.'"[4]Shera (pronounced, sher-ay), means both to “abide” and “loosen” at once.[5] This means the moment we are with God, we are separated from the trouble. When we remain with God, in Christ, the Lord solves our problems as our sole Benefactor (on our behalf). He is our Help (Parakletos). We go to Him for guidance, as He is the only One stationed high enough to have the perspective to know the way out, the only One Who truly has the capacity to care, the only One Who has the power to rescue and the capability to remedy. He illuminates our path in every way (Psalm 119:105).[6] He is our Protector.


In the midst of complexity, chaos or confusion,

we can go to God for clarity.


No temptation [regardless of its source] has overtaken or enticed you that is not common to human experience [nor is any temptation unusual or beyond human resistance]; but God is faithful [to His word—He is compassionate and trustworthy], and He will not let you be tempted beyond your ability [to resist], but along with the temptation He [has in the past and is now and] will [always] provide the way out as well, so that you will be able to endure it [without yielding, and will overcome temptation with joy] (1 Corinthians 10:13, AMP).[7]

Daniel was labeled “the one who solved knotty problems” because he thought along the lines of God’s Mind (5:12, 16, AMPC). Daniel looked down upon a dark, descending world, flung open the windows and prayed (6:10). Trust oils the machine. The Pulpit Commentary elaborates on our passage:


“God is not only the God of nature, of providence, and of man, but also of revelation. He can make known to man what otherwise man could never know. He is the very Source of all light and enlightenment. [Daniel 2:22] is even loftier than the cognate phrase of the Apostle John (1 John 1:5), ‘God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.’ Daniel ascribes to Jehovah all the powers of all the gods of Babylon.”[8]

Daniel talked to God about the state of the world. He did not freeze in a stalemate, or cower under everything going wrong. Daniel knew that without God, things could get very dark indeed (read Judges). In God’s response to the communication Daniel offered, Daniel was granted great wisdom and supernatural protection.


It is time we pray.


“The Bible is a letter God has sent to us, prayer is a letter we send to Him.”[9]


When God reveals “deep things and dark,” and knows which things in our lives belong to the dark and which to the light, He categorizes and sorts on our behalf—inwardly and outwardly. He organizes our innermost thoughts—the things of the heart, soul, spirit and mind—if we cooperate. He fights in the heavenlies, spiritually, for us. He molds the earth, physically, to accommodate His will. He bends low and speaks to us with a still, small voice and allows us our choices (see Deuteronomy 30:19; John 10:10).


Can you imagine that God cares what we think and

is standing by to see what we will choose!


Now, if God thinks our decisions matter, they must matter tremendously. Human nature delves in the wearying, dark extremes of lofty pride or utter defeat when it should be awestruck with wonder, running straight after God, into the Light. You and I must be capable, with God's help and illumination, of initiating Godly change on this earth. He does use us!


The state of our minds, hearts and souls plays a vast role in the quality of relationship we have with God. Our attitudes and perceptions, what we murmur or sing under our breath, influences our experiences. Our countenance and outlook not only affects our spiritual life and our private, inner life, it affects our health, other people, the environment, and the future for countless other lives—on earth and in the heavenly sphere.


Before we speak or act, we habitually think.


Dr. Caroline Leaf states: “Every cell of the body is connected to the heart, and the brain controls the heart, and the mind controls the brain. Whatever we are thinking…affects every cell within our body.”[10] This concept not only works on the micro level (cellular); it also works on the macro level (universal). God sees the heart. He examines it closely, because He understands its importance.

“Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight; everything is uncovered and exposed before the eyes of Him to whom we must give account” (Hebrews 4:13, BSB).

We are part of God’s plan and the gifts and talents He has given us are to be put to good use. This takes intelligence, and willingness, and the energy of love. Conversely, a dark and clouded mind prevents obedient service—so stay with God for constant mental clarity. He will instill loyalty into your soul and grant you a supremely focused vision.


“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, with whom there is no change or shifting shadow” (James 1:17, BSB).

As a simple thought exercise, count the number of Christmases you have left on this planet. This is an estimate, as God only knows for us all, but now, please ask yourself…How do I want to spend my remaining time here? Do you want to have these Christmases pass by in health or misery? In power or despair? In all the days between Christmas Days, do you want to enjoy your life, or detest it?


Each day is a gift from God to you.

You can always unwrap new hope.


This positive choice is always available because of Jesus coming in a manger to you. The star is bright—seek out what it illuminates. Believe this: what you consciously choose (whether light or dark) matters to God and affects His Plan for the entire universe (Matthew 7:7, 8:13). One by one, each person chooses whether to walk in the darkness or the light—to open the eternal Gift from God, or throw it away.


But, you may ask...with all the problems in today’s world, can one person really make a difference? The answer is found in a question:


Did One make a difference on the cross?

God believes so, and we have seen it.


If it matters what we believe,

how much more does it matter what God believes?


It is God's power, not ours; so yes, "one" can move mountains.


Today, our nations need Light. They desperately need God's illumination, just as they did in Daniel's day. And just as in Daniel's case, God determined change would start in one faithful servant's heart and mind. God heard Daniel's prayer; He was listening for it. And we are reading about Daniel thousands of years after his life on earth had ended. You see, God’s economy operates on faith. His rewards are continually multiplicative to an infinite degree—and many rewards in eternity are based upon our choices here and now. Therefore, discipline your mind and your emotions; endeavor to effectively use your remaining time on earth in service to God, just like Daniel did.


The best medicine for a mind running in the red or shutting down

is the Presence of God.

Matthew Henry describes the multitude of thoughts a mind in a state of unrest must endure:


“Foolish thoughts are sinful thoughts; the first-born of the old man, the first beginnings of all sin; and how many of these vain thoughts lodge within us wherever we lodge? Their name is Legion, for they are many; who can understand these errors! They are more than the hairs of our head.”[11]

“Darkness and Light” creates quite a stir. There is a battle that we face continually while on the earth that, at times, can mentally exhaust us. There are many forces continually at work against Christians. We are to pay attention (Proverbs 4) and guard our hearts, our minds and our lives with all diligence, for out of them flow the issues of life (Deuteronomy 4:9; Proverbs 4:23, 24:12; Luke 21:34; Philippians 4:7). To pose a challenging question: Are you creating problems, or solving them? The vast outworking of providence and consequence comes from the still, small voice of God moving upon the quiet state of the soul—if it is hard to listen, be calm. When you awaken to the Lord's light, the problem dissipates.


Emotionally, discouragement and, mentally, distraction become the double-fisted armaments of the enemy, designed to hold saints in the dark, sink them down in despondency, or stop their will (their "want to") due to calamity and its aftereffect: the fear of extended punishment from God. How many hoaxes and lies! However, God has spoken. Tenderly. Softly. Truly, in the dawn of the morning…you are released. “Tell her that her time of service and her warfare has ended—her punishment is accepted and her iniquity is pardoned, that she has [already] received from the Lord’s hand double for all of her sins” (Isaiah 40:2, AMPC). Every fleck of the pen comes true (Matthew 5:18) and God’s gentleness can fall all of Satan’s armies swirling around us, and they are suddenly gone.


God loves you,

just as much after the indescribable battles.


Belief—including belief in the Promises written for you in the Bible—is a powerful force. Do not let the devil convince you otherwise. “Nothing they have imagined they could do would be impossible for them” (Genesis 11:6, AMP). This is true. Yet, apart from God, there is no goodness any man can accomplish (Mark 10:18; 1 John 4:8). “And the Lord came down to see the city, which the children of men builded” (Genesis 11:5, ERV). And He didn’t like it, just as we do not like the evil report of today's headlines. Likewise, Daniel, in mourning over the people's problems, was so distraught he had no appetite as he looked out over the city and its insurmountable rebellion. Yet, as he bravely faced the issues of mankind, “a word was revealed” and the “word was true and it referred to great tribulation” and he understood it (10:1-3, AMPC).


Because of God's illumination,
and Daniel's choice to serve God,
Daniel was effectively used during a worldly crisis.

When God reveals all things hidden, saints witness it; issues between darkness and light surface on the sea of humanity. As a minister, many people are seen over the crest of the ridge who were previously hidden in the dark—the starving, the sick, the dying, the crying, the lost… “Jesus wept” (John 11:35) and He brought the Light (John 8:12). Daniel opened his windows and prayed. Like the angel said to Daniel: “Fear not…for from the first day that you set your mind and heart to understand and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come [in response to] your words” (10:12), our Help is coming.


Daniel said, “Then Michael…came to help me, for I remained there…” (10:13).

Daniel remained in the situation, dwelling with the Lord, as the Lord unraveled complexities. Daniel, understanding the temporariness of his time here, decided serving the Lord was the better option. He knew he was only one man when he decided to take a stand; that he had been allotted only one life that was precious to him. However, he did not cower under the threat of wickedness. Daniel thought clearly and he made the right choice.


“I call heaven and earth to witness this day against you that I have set before you life and death, the blessings and the curses; therefore choose life, that you and your descendants may live” (Deuteronomy 30:19, AMPC).

After the strange, formidable trials that stretched Daniel's faith, after the wild things he saw of angels, of demons; of nations, of his quiet room; of kings' palaces and lions' pits—it was well with his soul. He made his choices between darkness and light accurately, because he dwelt with God. God, in turn, proved to be his Help, just as He will with us today.

“But you [Daniel, who was now over ninety years of age], go your way until the end; for you shall rest and shall stand [fast] in your allotted place at the end of the days” (12:13, AMPC).

Like the Book of Daniel reveals, it is not easy to endure Legion to the end, to become a stay, to continue to fight the good fight no matter our natural age. But God always wins. The craftiness and subtleness of the enemy is designed to convince God’s people the spirit world doesn’t exist—yet it certainly does. Once life, once death; once good, once evil; once Heaven, once Hell no longer exist in your mind, you stop making choices. You stop engaging your will. You stop caring for your descendants. You stop stewarding your soul. You start declining. As an author, I have no idea who God intends this message for, but the point is clear: God is compelling you to overcome. Whether you have one Christmas left, or seventy, continue to follow the Star, the Light. Just as He did with Daniel, God Himself will illuminate your path and help you clearly define the darkness and light once again in your heart and mind. Get back up, clear your head, and dwell with God. No matter what you see, He will bring enlightenment and solve it. You can go ahead and be happy in your partnership with God. Your decision to enjoy your time and operate in your gifts matters enormously to the Kingdom of God. Believe. Your life affects not only the plan of God, but the state of the fallen world.


Go your way until the end; for you shall rest and shall stand

[fast] in your allotted place at the end of the days.


God bless you.


 

Bible Translations:


Unless otherwise noted, all biblical passages referenced are in the Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (La Habra, CA: The Zondervan Corporation and the Lockman Foundation, 1987).


Scripture quotations taken from the Amplified® Bible (AMP), Copyright © 2015 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. www.Lockman.org


The Holy Bible, Berean Study Bible, BSB, Copyright ©2016, 2018 by Bible Hub. Used by Permission. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.


Scripture quotations taken from the HOLY BIBLE: EASY-TO-READ VERSION ©2014 by Bible League International. Used by permission.


References:

[1] Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers. Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission. Daniel 2:22. Bible Hub. https://biblehub.com/daniel/2-22.htm. [2] The Pulpit Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright © 2001, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2010 by BibleSoft, Inc. Used by permission. Bible Hub. https://biblehub.com/daniel/2-22.htm. [3] Based on Hebraic definitions. Daniel 2:22. Bible Hub. https://biblehub.com/daniel/2-22.htm. [4] The Pulpit Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright © 2001, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2010 by BibleSoft, Inc. Used by permission. Bible Hub. https://biblehub.com/daniel/2-22.htm. [5]Strong’s Concordance, 8271. https://biblehub.com/daniel/2-22.htm. [6] See the many definitions of “light” here: https://biblehub.com/hebrew/216.htm

[7] “Temptation” here can mean any temptation to sin, including giving in to despondency or discouragement, prideful over-analysis or excessive complication, comparison to others or worry. These are negative thieves which steal precious energy and the enjoyment out of living. Consider that the Fruit of the Holy Spirit are all positive (see Galatians 5:22-23), and He is indwelling your spirit. If you are experiencing difficulty overcoming negative thoughts, consider the terms “mental discipline” or “emotional discipline” as discipline moves one into pre-determinate action, rather than passively following feelings (which change frequently). You can gain such discipline through Christ. You can learn to think on the things you choose to think on, rather than entertaining every random thought that invades your mind and interrupts your time. For further study in this area, look up: 2 Timothy 1:7; Philippians 4:7-9; 1 Corinthians 2:6-14; Revelation 2:7, 11, 17, 26; 3:12, 21. A healthy thought life is one of the most important areas of mastery for the believer, as Proverbs 23:7 states, “For as [a man] thinks in his heart, so is he” (AMPC). The enemy tactic behind excessive mental distraction or emotional discouragement (bewilderment) is to keep a saint from productively fulfilling the call of God on their lives. [8] The Pulpit Commentary, Electronic Database. Copyright © 2001, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2010 by BibleSoft, Inc. Used by permission. Bible Hub. https://biblehub.com/daniel/2-22.htm. [9] Matthew Henry. The Secret of Communion with God: How to Begin the Day, Spend the Day and End the Day with God. Solid Ground Christian Books: Birmingham, AL (2005), p. 23. [10] Caroline Leaf. Switch on Your Brain: The Key to Peak Happiness, Thinking and Health. Baker: Grand Rapids, MI (2013), p. 94. [11] Matthew Henry. The Secret of Communion with God: How to Begin the Day, Spend the Day and End the Day with God. Solid Ground Christian Books: Birmingham, AL (2005), p. 33.

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