Daniel’s Prayer: God’s Gracious Character, Our Sin

  • Date: Sunday, August 27, 2017
  • Speaker: John Bell
  • Series: Daniel
  • Scripture: Daniel 9:1–9:19

BIG PICTURE: The interaction between God and his covenant people comprises their history, and their history has a future precisely because of God’s character, not the obedience of his people. In his prayer of petition, Daniel appeals to God to preserve the integrity of his own name, the sanctity of his own covenant, and his reputation for mercy and forgiveness, that the decreed 70 years of exile in Babylon might end.

Point # 1 The heart of Daniel’s confession is that Israel has a sinful history

  1. Daniel and his people have turned away from God’s commands and laws (5)
  2. They have not listened to God’s servants the prophets (6)
  3. They have not obeyed the laws God gave through his servants the prophets (10)
  4. They have transgressed the Law (11)
  5.  They have not sought the favour of the Lord their God by turning from their sins and giving attention to his truth (13).

The heart of the matter is neglect of what God has said, or disobedience to what God has said. That is always the heart of the issue. Conversely, genuine sanctification comes through adherence to God’s words.

Point # 2:  Daniel recognizes that the judgments that have befallen God’s people are both just and perfectly in line with Scripture (7, 11–14).

Point # 3 The ground of Daniel’s appeal for relief: God’s character (15-19)

  1. God keeps his covenant love
  2. God is merciful and forgiving
  3. In keeping with past righteous acts which have made his name great, so will he continue to act
  4. For the sake of his name, his desolate temple, and for the people who bear his name, God will listen and act