Dan. 10 Dan 10:1 In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a message was revealed to Daniel, who was named Belteshazzar; and the message was true and one of great conflict, but he understood the message and had an understanding of the vision. Dan 10:2 In those days, I, Daniel, had been mourning for three entire weeks. Dan 10:3 I did not eat any tasty food, nor did meat or wine enter my mouth, nor did I use any ointment at all until the entire three weeks were completed. Dan 10:4 On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, while I was by the bank of the great river, that is, the Tigris, Dan 10:5 I lifted my eyes and looked, and behold, there was a certain man dressed in linen, whose waist was girded with a belt of pure gold of Uphaz. A lot folks get hung up on fancy things, the things the lost people love. This is true of most of the people found on the Membership Roles in the LORD's Church. Many of these people read passages like this one and create all manor of visions of what wonderful “worldly” wealth can be attained in Heaven. I was saved with these same crazy assumptions but as I've studied the Spirit has removed, I hope, all of this foolishness. Don't get me wrong, God is beyond rich but the fact is, it is His, all of it. Like this Angel, we will be cared for beyond our imaginations but then, even, we are His. Dan 10:6 His body also was like beryl, his face had the appearance of lightning, his eyes were like flaming torches, his arms and feet like the gleam of polished bronze, and the sound of his words like the sound of a tumult. Dan 10:7 Now I, Daniel, alone saw the vision, while the men who were with me did not see the vision; nevertheless, a great dread fell on them, and they ran away to hide themselves. Dan 10:8 So I was left alone and saw this great vision; yet no strength was left in me, for my natural color turned to a deathly pallor, and I retained no strength. I have never tried to go without food for three weeks and I do not recommend anyone else try it except they are as devoted as Daniel to their LORD. I have, in combat, gone for as much as a day without food but in the heat of the jungle, I was, pretty much, useless without food for strength. But, again, Daniel was serious about serving God and we must learn to be, also. Dan 10:9 But I heard the sound of his words; and as soon as I heard the sound of his words, I fell into a deep sleep on my face, with my face to the ground. Dan 10:10 Then behold, a hand touched me and set me trembling on my hands and knees. Dan 10:11 He said to me, "O Daniel, man of high esteem, understand the words that I am about to tell you and stand upright, for I have now been sent to you." And when he had spoken this word to me, I stood up trembling. Daniel, seriously, prayed and Daniel expected an answer from God and still he was in fear when the answer arrived. Do we have that degree of reverence for God? Dan 10:12 Then he said to me, "Do not be afraid, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart on understanding this and on humbling yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to your words. Dan 10:13 "But the prince of the kingdom of Persia was withstanding me for twenty-one days; then behold, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I had been left there with the kings of Persia. There have been quite a number of people that have attempted to argue me out of the idea that God sets the rulers of nations into place and that Satan sets one of his demons, a prince, in place also to keep us in his bondage. I knew the Bible was the true Word of God, some, twenty-three years before I was saved because of a Special Revelation from God and because I know that every word of the Bible is God's truth, I believe, with all of my heart this passage is an example of what is. God's angels are engaged in a war for us. Dan 10:14 "Now I have come to give you an understanding of what will happen to your people in the latter days, for the vision pertains to the days yet future." Dan 10:15 When he had spoken to me according to these words, I turned my face toward the ground and became speechless. Dan 10:16 And behold, one who resembled a human being was touching my lips; then I opened my mouth and spoke and said to him who was standing before me, "O my lord, as a result of the vision anguish has come upon me, and I have retained no strength. Dan 10:17 "For how can such a servant of my lord talk with such as my lord? As for me, there remains just now no strength in me, nor has any breath been left in me." Dan 10:18 Then this one with human appearance touched me again and strengthened me. A sermon I remember from my youth told me that God is our strength and this passage is a beautiful example of just what that means. Daniel was starved and I'll go so far as to venture that he had lost a good deal of weight while fasting. But as soon as God wanted to restore Daniel, all it took was one touch of God's Heavenly messenger to do so. Life application? I was a nasty bugger before God touched my heart but from January 1, 1990, that man ceased to live and a brand new Bill Taylor drew his first breath and is still living and teaching for God. Dan 10:19 He said, "O man of high esteem, do not be afraid. Peace be with you; take courage and be courageous!" Now as soon as he spoke to me, I received strength and said, "May my lord speak, for you have strengthened me." Dan 10:20 Then he said, "Do you understand why I came to you? But I shall now return to fight against the prince of Persia; so I am going forth, and behold, the prince of Greece is about to come. Dan 10:21"However, I will tell you what is inscribed in the writing of truth. Yet there is no one who stands firmly with me against these forces except Michael your prince. It is is a hard lesson to comprehend but, as a son of the Almighty God, the chief of Heaven's host is my servant... WOW!! It is hard to take all of the truth in but we must learn to do so.