Daniel knows that God is holy and righteous. Daniel knows that the people of Israel are in exile and hopeless because they chose to ignore God and the many prophets that He sent. They chose to follow their leaders who looking to earthly things to gain personal value and power. Daniel understood that the current situation was a consequence of unfaithful behavior.
Yet, Daniel had enough trust in God to know that God would listen and that God, ultimately, wanted Israel restored, not just as a nation or people, but as a people of God. Daniel understood that it would only by God’s mercy that Israel would be restored. He was confessing on behalf of an entire people that they had missed the mark, yet he still asked.
1) In Psalm 25:6-7 (NIV), the psalmist writes, “Remember, LORD, your great mercy and love, for they are from of old. Do not remember the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you, LORD, are good.”
Just like Daniel, the psalmist was appealing the consequences based upon God’s mercy and love, knowing that both preexisted the errors of the psalmist. Daniel, too, that God’s mercy and love existed long before he did, or the tribe and nation of Israel existed. The underlying thought here is that there was something that needed to be forgiven; there was something that needed to be repented of. Is there something that you think could be a problem, but aren’t certain that it is a problem that God is concern about? Bring it to God, anyways! That small thing could very well help you heal in other areas in your life, or God may use it to show you what is really hampering your relationship with Him.
2) In 2 Timothy 4:1-5, Paul is warning Timothy that people will get to a point where they will not listen because they don’t want to. It is no different than what the people of Israel had done for generations prior to their exile. The very things Daniel was repenting of. We are often quick to say that there is false teaching all around us, even in our church!
Have you thought there was false teaching? What did you do?
Do we ever call something false teaching that does not conflict with scripture, but appears to conflict with our understanding or traditions?