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What Are the Odds?

Chris Holland
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Chris Holland

Chris Holland is speaker/director of It Is Written Canada. 

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  • February 21, 2015
    11:00 AM
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Believe will in the world today and you talk about this you use those words and I like those words solid and trustworthy. You know last week as we talked we talked about your personal journey and finding and and asking that question what is the real meaning of life and finding the real meaning in life is finding God's purpose for me as an individual and then being obedient to the end of that purpose. If there is a God I believe there is and if he was responsible for generating our lives and no doubt about that then he must have a purpose for us. Otherwise none of it really makes sense. Some people quit because they discouraged or dissuaded or can't find answers but if you don't quit that you pressed on determined to have God show you his purpose for your life you find that and that's when life becomes filled with meaning and he used that word discouraged and there are many people some of them watching today who are discouraged who are discontented because just like in your story maybe they've grown up in the church or maybe they've observed church from the outside and seen that there are no answers and there's and I'm going to use a really strong word but that word Apoc or see where something's being said but not actually practice. It's funny you should use that word I was thinking the very same thing you and I am sure both who had many people say there are too many hypocrites in the church. Yes Well yes there are that. You're probably hypocrites in Canada too but. But you wouldn't have someone from sketch one saying well I'm leaving and I'm going to go move to Australia because there are too many hypocrites in Canada. That's right you know that that's just a part of life. It's where we find them in the church they push us out of the church and that shouldn't happen. That's right and in fact as I pastored churches people would say that especially young people would say to me pastor the church is full of hypocrites and I say yes I know that's why they're here trying to find God's purpose and so we talked about finding God's purpose in his. Word but there may be someone out there asking the question can we really trust God's word is God's word. What are the odds that this book really is what it says it is. That that's a question that everybody should answer. Find an answer to even if you've been raised in the church all your life you need to come to the place where you're convinced that the Bible is what it claims to be or that you convinced it isn't. You can't be ambivalent and people ought to know why they believe what they believe or that they can believe what they believe. It's an intelligent question can we believe the Bible. It's the right question to ask. You know one of the things I think it might make sense for us to do is to go to a Bible story or a Bible story and in our next show we're going to talk about prophecy specifically but we're going to go to a prophecy today a predictive prophecy a prophecy that looks at the future. If the Bible is what it says it is then any prediction in the Bible should come true and give us a basis to believe what this book says. Yeah that's a fair point people should be able to hold the Bible speak to the fire if I can mix my metaphors. If the Bible is what it what people say it is it should stack up. So the predictive prophecies ought to mean something I mean something valid. So let's go ahead and take a look. Let's look at a classic predictive prophecy in the Book of Daniel Daniel Chapter two. OK And as we open our Bibles to Daniel Chapter two you know we could spend a lot of time talking about the history of where we arrive at Daniel two but just to summarize. Jerusalem has been conquered by the Babylonians the Babylonians. Take a group of nobility back to Babylon and Daniel is one of the young men taken back to Babylon. We don't know exactly how old he is but he is in. His late teens probably seventeen eighteen nineteen years old he goes to Babylon and and I write what I love the book of Daniel so we did. But they go through a process of removing Daniel's identification by taking away his home taking away his food taking away his name taking away his ability to reproduce. But then he goes to the University of Babylon and the testimony of Daniel Chapter one is at the end of that through prayer through God's guidance. Daniel finds that purpose that we talked about in our last show and his purpose is to be a wise counsellor in Babylon and the Bible says that he's actually found to be ten times smarter than the rest of his classmates who were from Babylon. So an amazing story. But now we hear appear in Daniel Chapter two. And so John maybe give us a little context. What's happening in Daniel Chapter two. KING A look at news of the mightiest man on the planet excuse me has a dream. Not just any old dream it's an impressive dream of it to do so much so that he wakes up and he wants to remember the dream but he cannot recall it now why this is significant is because the the monarch's believe the gods communicated with them through dreams and interestingly God was communicating with them through this terrain. That's right and he says I've got to know the dream but I. I can't remember what it was and I want to know what it means. But how can I if I don't know what it was so he called his wise men together and maybe I should read something here. In verse three is counselor yes Daniel two those three and the king said to them I have dreamed a dream and my spirit was troubled to know the dream. They say in verse four. So tell us what the dream was and will interpret it. Yes and that's always been I've always appreciated that of the of the astrologers and the wise men. Just tell us the dream will give you the interpretation of what all of us know. If I tell you a dream you can just make anything up just like that but never can as are smarter than that. He said The thing is gone from me if you will not make known to me the dream with the interpretation thereof you shall be cut in pieces and your houses shall be made of dung hill we have no reason to doubt his seriousness yes tell us what tell me what it was or else you did a short story shorter they can't do it. Death sentence and with this gets really interesting is that Daniel and his friend she had wrecked me shaken a bit ago were considered to be part of the King's car Dr Wiseman That's right and when you see the executer more that included them now I don't know why they weren't present at that first interview but they were not the executioner actually comes for Daniel. That's right I mention that I love it. Hello I have come to kill you because of something the Kingis did well what in the world and Daniel says what's up with that. He gets an explanation and he asks for a little time if you just give us some time we'll get back to the King with an interpretation and then what they do. It is they pray and you know this I want to interrupt you for a moment. They pray. Now someone might be or what does it mean to pray I'm going to encourage that viewer to continue to watch because we're going to we're going to spend an entire show talking about prayer. What really is prayer. But they pray they and they they really prayed and the Bible says in Daniel two in verse nineteen then it was the secret revealed to Daniel in a night vision in Daniel place the God of heaven so God communicated that dream in its meaning to Daniel meaning God answers prayers God answers prayer and we're about to see not only just can't answer prayer but God knows the future in fact we're going to see that God has the very future in his hands. It's incredible. So we'll get down here to Daniel Chapter two and verse thirty one Can we pick it up it sounds good. OK he's standing before the king when you read what he says to the King and this is what Daniel said you O. King were watching and behold a great image this great image whose Splendor was excellent stood before you and its form was awesome. This images head was a fine gold its chest and arms of silver its belly and thighs of bronze. Its legs of iron its feet partly environ and partly of clay. He watched while a stone was cut out without hands which struck the image on its feet of iron and clay and broke them in pieces. This room added This is quite dramatic. So Daniel is given this dream. And it's the same dream that never can answer and I imagine I've I've imagined in my mind because Daniel is now sharing with the king and he's made it clear to the king by the way that it wasn't his invention it wasn't his smarts it wasn't his wisdom but he makes sure the King knows God's the one game in history. Yeah I imagine in my mind what was never can as reaction I can imagine sitting forward on his throne with his eyes as big as saucers and maybe as his jaw dropped open and he's and he's listening to that and he's not that that thinks that's exactly that's exactly what I dreamed he had been astonished by what he was hearing. And so he's astonished and certainly I'm sure he was glad this is the dream Daniel this is the dream but you know what. It's one thing to know the dream but we want to we want to know more than you do and never can as a wanted to know more than just what the dream was he wanted to know what the dream meant and so John was doing yoga. Two is that they prophesies smooth things. Yes And we have examples in the Bible of profits coming to kings and telling him just what they wanted to hear. In fact there's that wonderful passage where a head speaks up my chi He says another property and my car but I hate him because he only tells me that thing and so he Daniel takes his life in his hands and he squares off with the greatest monarch on the planet he says your kingdom is going to come to an end you going to be overthrown and I Jeannette you will be another kingdom inferior to you and then another third kingdom of bronze which shall be a rule over all of the earth. The fourth kingdom will be strong as I am just like bricks and pieces and subdues all things and so Daniel has laid out and this prophecy in Daniel two for those studying the Bible is absolutely essential because it is on this foundation that in fact the rest of the Book of Daniel is built and the Book of Revelation finds its roots in a lot of people don't realize that that's that's a significantly important point. And so Daniel shares with never can answer. You've seen this statue this image I had of gold chasin arms of silver a midsection of brass or bronze legs of iron feet of iron and clay. John as we look at history Daniel's already told us the head of gold is the empire of Babylon. Now we know Babylon didn't last forever right. Was Daniel Pearl Daniel's prediction correct. Was Gaunts prediction correct. Did another empire come after Babylon. Interesting million Daniel Chapter five that kingdom is named Bello shares as having the wild party he dishonors God by bringing the holy worship this was a being taken from the temple in Jerusalem filling them with alcohol and drinking them in praise to the gods and. Writing was on the wall. Yes he was slain in the Bible says. Next the Middle Persian empire ruled that they've been given the name of the Empire and as Daniel said after you will come another kingdom inferior to you after Babylon the meta Persians the Middle Persian scum and against really all odds it's against all odds because Babylon as a city is a fortress with three walls thicknesses In fact there are accounts of history where Babylonian soldiers stand on the top of the walls and actually throw food down at the meat or Persians as they're coming and and making say we have enough food to last us twenty years but in a miracle of miracles and God's providence the Persians and we don't have time for the whole story but they actually come up a dry Euphrates River right into the city. So lay Belshazzar and the Middle Persian so after the middle Persians R.C.B. after the Babylonians the Mito Persians reign. But does history say that the beadle Persians last forever or is another kingdom come after these Middle Persian the Bible said another kingdom. And sure enough. The Greeks reigned after the Mido Persians they ruled from about three thirty one B.C. to one hundred sixty eight B.C. and they made an enormous impact on the world which is in many ways felt in society today. So you had Babylon and then Mido Persia and then Greece and that's impressive but then you'll see it for not very far and it's very interesting the the metals used the brass the bronze the Greeks are well known for using bronze and again it's against all odds because Alexander the Great who's the great general that leads the Greeks across comes from a little tiny place in Greece but undoubtedly remembers the middle Persians coming in invading and killing his people. He sweeps across conquers the Mito Persians but Greece doesn't and doesn't last forever. It comes to an end John. What Kingdom comes from history. What Kingdom defeats the Greeks. In Daniel Chapter two you have this great image with legs made of iron. Historians have even referred to as the ion King and it was mighty powerful. The line represented was a fitting emblem of this empire that did crush and break in pieces and bruised interesting bruise because Christ would be bruised according to that original prophecy in the book of Genesis. He was more than Bruce but bruised on a Roman instrument of torture that was a Roman cross Jesus died on. Yes and the Romans ruled in a reign for one hundred and hundreds of years you can go right now to Hadrian's wall the border between England and Scotland as a Roman war have actually stood right there at Hadrian's wall something the Roman bogs down and down and up and I don't mean to be fixated on the United Kingdom the ancient Roman and all. In London you can still see remnants of that right and then you go to Rome you know in the Roman ruins or just everywhere. This was an incredibly powerful kingdom you would think it would just last forever but kingdoms don't and God had said this one would not to and the fascinating thing is the Romans are actually never defeated. That's right because you know we have these very clean demarcations gold silver bronze iron. But then all of a sudden it kind of just leaks and we have iron mixed with clay. So the Romans are actually never defeated but simply divided and we can go to Europe today and I know you've done some extensive touring in Europe and the countries of Europe today are simply the divided remnants of the Roman Empire. That's right. And so God predicts God foretells with exact precision and accuracy hundreds and hundreds of years before these things even come about. That this would happen. Absolutely fascinating. But the prophecy doesn't end there John. No God save the best for last. It is it is Rome would divide and it did and then the prophecy talked about a stone being cut out without hands would come hurtling through space I suppose and land on the feet of this image and destroy it and a great mountain would would would fill the whole earth likes reading in verse forty four you know days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed the kingdom shall not be left to other people but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms and it shall stand forever. Mikey Babylon couldn't stand for more than a couple hundred years. Well less than a hundred last a hundred years since the middle Persians a couple of hundred years Greece not long now half a millennium or so. That's right that's significant. But they passed up the scene and you know if I can I can be frank. Italy doesn't look like it's going to rule the world again anytime soon. No no I say that with respect. Sure none of these kingdoms look like they're ever going to make a comeback. They are done. That's right and even in the attempt and it's an amazing thing because and again we can't get into all the intricacies of this prophecy but it says that they would try to mingle together but would never come together a many times of rulers and despots and tyrants and monarchs tried to reunite the Roman Empire every time they failed and they failed. Even in this modern age which many people will be familiar with who've traveled to Europe the euro an attempt to unite the kingdom under one currency has still failed in reuniting the former Roman Empire. These are amazing things John. And so we walk away from this prophecy and we could spend a lot of time and will be making an offer today where people can study this further. What do you take away from this in this question of what are the odds that this book really is what it says it is and that I can find purpose for my life. What's something that you can walk away with. There is no way this prophecy as accurate as it is could have been originated by human beings. Now I understand someone's going to say well you use the Bible to validate the Bible. That's just a little over simplistic because here we have the Bible we have history we have archaeology. You can go outside the Bible do independent scholarship which verifies much of what's written in the Bible to some of the key people and places and events no matter how you cut it. Daniel two is a prime example of the veracity the trustworthiness of the Bible. I'll take it a step further that prophecy and with God sitting up a king that whatever Pastor what's right it ends with the second coming of Jesus. So if I can trust the Bible and I think I can in the same book outside of Daniel prophesied Jesus said he would die on a cross and he would be born of a virgin save none of his bones would be broken. All of these prophecies came true. I can trust these. Then I can trust that Jesus is going to come back. That's right I can trust that God sitting up a kingdom he wants me to be part of wait a minute. Daniel two doesn't just say the Bible is true Daniel two says God loves me and wants me to be with him forever. That something you can get excited about. Absolutely and so just as God answers the question What is the meaning of life just as God answers the question what are the odds that this book really is what it says it is. We can find hope and security in this world of relativity where everything's relative what's right for you is right for you what's right for me is right for me. We can find an anchor that we can cling to. We can lay our hope and our trust in find confidence and follow Jesus. John it's hard to believe our time's gone this past but would you pray for us today as we end this show. And find that confidence in Jesus and love to pray together. Our Father in heaven I thank you that there is something solid trustworthy and believable in this world. I thank you that you are God not distant but neah not absent but present a God who has a future that includes us. Thank you get out your plans involve each one of us we love you and thank you thank you for showing that you are a God whose word is true in Jesus' name amen. Everyone may I have one in your medicine cabinet. Hopefully you are eating a wonderful array of vegetables and fruits as they are protective of your good health. When we are eating well and God's amazing transparency we can expect to not get sick with colds and flus as often as other people do but every once in a while we might succumb to some virus or bacteria that's out there. That's when you need to have really helpful natural remedies on hand. Here are four of my recommendations activated charcoal has been in use for over three thousand years for health and healing made from wood vegetables and other materials is able to attract and bind to many harmful substances. It is also amazing that filtering toxins in film poisoning situations activated charcoal is highly beneficial. And then garlic. It's remarkable for its antibacterial and antiviral properties. Feel a cold coming on nip it in the bud by boiling too close. Garlic and two cups of water for around ten minutes. Drink this tea throughout the day. Ginger it's been proven to be very effective in alleviating the unsettling symptoms of motion and sea sickness including dizziness nausea vomiting and cold sweating and lemons they are famous but they're strong and to bacterial antiviral and immune boosting powers Here's a recipe that can ease chills and fever for instance and the juice of one lemon to a cup of hot water with honey and drink at once and then every two hours until the fever or chills from science. I hope you'll add the suggested superheroes to your medicine cabinet along with fruits vegetables and especially the dark leafy green to you next time. You no friends John and I discussed and have been studying beyond questions looking for answers. And today we asked the question what does the future hold. You know we could go to a fortune teller we could go to some type of psychic and there are a dime a dozen and they're going to tell us whatever we want to hear. But you know what. We asked what are the odds that this book this book is true. And in the Book of Daniel we found that God can be relied upon. And so today I'd like to offer you the Discover prophecy lessons focus on prophecy where you can study deeper into Daniel two and see that His word is reliable. Here's the information you need to get today's author to request today's offer. Just log onto W.W.W. dot. It is written canada dot ca That's W W W dot it is written canada dot ca for Canadian viewers. The offer will be sent free and postage paid for viewers outside of Canada shipping charges will apply. If you prefer you may call toll free one eight hundred eight. All I I W.. That's one eight eight eight call I W. Or if you wish you may write to us. It is written. Box twenty ten. Ottawa Ontario L one eight seventy four. John thank you so much for sharing from God's word today. Thank you Chris. You know friends John and I have been answering the question going beyond the questions and finding those answers. God can be relied upon his word can be relied upon. I hope you enjoyed today's program. I invite you to join us again next week. Until then remember. It is written man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.

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