15 lessons to learn from Daniel Chapter 4

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Have you read the book of Daniel and can you list some 15 lessons to learn from Daniel Chapter 4? The book of Daniel is one of the books in the Old Testament that demonstrates the sovereignty of God and His power to control the affairs of men. In the book of Daniel, you will discover the power of God and His sovereignty demonstrated over impossible situations. In this article, I will discuss 15 lessons to learn from Daniel Chapter 4. When done reading, kindly share the lessons you have also learned from Daniel Chapter 4.

15 lessons to learn from Daniel Chapter 4

1. God is awesomely great (Dan 4: 3-4)

King Nebuchadnezzar and the entire Babylonian Kingdom have already seen the great power of God, His control of impossible situations and His ability to save in strange situations demonstrated through the three Hebrew boys thrown into the fire. Further to this, Nebuchadnezzar made a declaration for all to worship this great God that is able to save. In Daniel 4:2-3, King Nebuchadnezzar praised and glorified the LORD saying:

“It is my pleasure to tell you about the miraculous signs and wonders that the Most High God has performed for me. How great are his signs, how mighty his wonders! His kingdom is an eternal kingdom; his dominion endures from generation to generation”.

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In the above two verses, King Nebuchadnezzar praised God and declared His goodness to all people but his character was an indication that, he only had knowledge about him and yet to personally experience this God and submit to Him. The biggest lesson here is that, mere knowledge about God is not enough. Eye service and merely praising the LORD on the lips are easier and can be done by just anyone but it is the heart and the character that matters.

The same Nebuchadnezzar that was praising the greatness of God to all people was told by Daniel in Daniel 4:27 to repent, renounce his evil ways and be saved.

2. Unexplained dreams and nightmares can disturb your life

King Nebuchadnezzar had a difficult dream and that dream had become a nightmare to him. He stressed in Daniel 4:5 that thoughts of the nightmare flashed on his mind and got him terrified. Dreams and nightmares that seem to have been printed on your mind and always seemed to be flashing through your mind can disturb your life if nothing is done about it. Sometimes, the unexplained nightmare is not the problem; it is not doing anything about it that brings more confusion and stress.  

3. Consult and seek solution when issues are beyond you

One of the lessons that can be learnt in Daniel 4:6 is to consult and seek for help when issues are beyond you. Nebuchadnezzar was a dreamer but not an interpreter of dreams. He was a mighty king whose fame and glory rose and spread over all the earth during his days. He had all the experts at his beck and call but he knew exactly what to do whenever he realized that he was incapacitated when specialized knowledge was required. Seeking help and consulting the right people at the right time of need could open up revelations that can transform one’ life.

4. God speaks to people through dreams and visions

Dreams and visions are one of the means through which God normally speaks to people. One interesting thing about dreaming and having visions is that it is common to all people across all nations and despite religious backgrounds. Everyone is a dreamer and it is God’s free gift and a means of communicating divine truths and revelations to people. Nebuchadnezzar was a dreamer. He first had a dream that put the position and life of all the wise men, diviners, astrologers and magicians in trouble in his kingdom. It took the grace of God and divine intervention for Daniel to interpret the dream and save the lives of all the wise men in Babylon. Daniel chapter 4 illustrates how God chooses to reveal His intentions, plans and future events to people through dreams and revelations.

When done reading the 15 lessons to learn from Daniel Chapter 4, read also: 20 Qualities of a good and an effective Christian leader

5. Dreams have meaning and need interpretation

While some dreams are self explanatory, others need interpretation. Where it becomes difficult to understand the dream, it should be considered prayerfully because of the symbols and tokens that may be used to represent something different. In Daniel 4:6-7, King Nebuchadnezzar ordered for all the magicians, astrologers, diviners and all the wise men of Babylon to come before him to interpret his dream. Though dreams have meanings, it is important to note that you may not have the interpretation for all dreams. And you must not force yourself to get the meaning of all dreams. Meaning and interpretation of dreams belong to the LORD and needs to be considered thoughtfully and prayerfully.

6. Calamity strikes when you do nothing about divine warnings and messages.

Disgrace and destruction befall the proud, sinful and stubborn hearted people who refuse to repent. Anytime the LORD becomes gracious enough to warn people about pending danger, He gives them the grace and the opportunity to repent and turn from their evil ways. However, failure to do something about such warnings activates destruction to befall the proud, the sinful and stubborn hearted people. After Daniel interpreted the dream, he told Nebuchadnezzar to repent and turn from his evil and wicked ways but he did not. After one whole year, the vision he had came to pass and his heart was turned into the heart of an animal and he was cast out of his own palace and joined the wild animals in the forest for 7 years.  Sometimes, God gives some people enough time to reflect and repent but they waste that grace period.

7. There are many false worshipers and hypocrites

Daniel chapter 4 revealed that Nebuchadnezzar was a false worshipper. He worshiped and praised God with his lips but his heart and mind were far from God. The same Nebuchadnezzar that was praising God to all people was advised by Daniel to repent from his sins (Dan 4: 27). This was the same person that was good at praising God for His wonders, His sovereignty and His works.

8. Leadership and greatness must submit to the authority of Christ.

Nebuchadnezzar was told in his own dream that he would be cut off from people until he recognized God as the sovereign God that rules the kingdoms and appoints leaders on earth. It was his failure to acknowledge God, submit to him and repent from his ways that made the vision to come to past and he was cut off from his people.

True leadership emanates from God. It is God that appoints leaders and it is He that establishes, enthrones and dethrones kings. Any leader that does not  recognize the sovereignty of God in the affairs of men is likely to walk in pride and subsequently may lose his position.

9. Pride and self glorification will cut you off from your position in life.

One of the biggest lessons one has to learn from Daniel Chapter 4 is pride and self glorification will cut you off from your position in life. King Nebuchadnezzar became very powerful, wealthy and famous. He had almost everything at his disposal and began to walk in pomposity in life. 12 months after he was warned and advised by Daniel, he was walking on the roof of his empire and admiring what his own strength, wisdom and resources have managed to do to make Babylon great. Nebuchadnezzar said:

“Is not this the great Babylon I have built as the royal residence, by my mighty power and for the glory of my majesty?” (Daniel 4:30)

10. The difference between humans and animals is the state of mind and heart. – Daniel 4:16

In Daniel 4:16, King Nebuchadnezzar was told in his dream that “Let his mind be changed from that of a man and let him be given the mind of an animal, till seven times pass by for him”. Once his mind was changed into that of an animal, he found where he now belonged and went into the bush to live with the wild animals and was drenched with dew as prophesied. It is the mind or sometimes referred to as the heart that controls every affair of men. Once the mind is no longer working as intended by God, it will take another course. Truth is, the difference between humans and animals is the state of the mind and heart. It is rather unfortunate that sometimes, human beings behave like animals and do the unthinkable.

11. Repentance and reverence for God leads to restoration.

When the 7 years were due, Nebuchadnezzar lifted up his eyes, acknowledged the sovereignty of God and his sanity was restored. His throne and leadership were also restored to him. Repentance must lead one to get closer to God to walk in the ways of the LORD. After Nebuchadnezzar repented, the LORD restored onto him his sanity and his position as the King.

12. God humbles the proud.

In 1 Peter 5:5, the Bible says that God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Throughout all culture, all people and all nations, pride and self glorification are frowned upon and not entertained. While King Nebuchadnezzar was walking on the top of his roof, he said, “Is not this the great Babylon I have built as the royal residence, by my mighty power and for the glory of my majesty?” This statement is a declaration of self glorification and pride. Finally, King Nebuchadnezzar learnt his lesson in Daniel 4:37 saying: “And those who walk in pride, God is able to humble”.

13. Healing comes from above.

King Nebuchadnezzar has been driven from home, lived with the wild animals in the bush and drenched by the dew of heaven for 7 years. When the 7 years were fully due, King Nebuchadnezzar said: “At the end of that time, I, Nebuchadnezzar, raised my eyes toward heaven, and my sanity was restored…” (Daniel 4:34). Raising his eyes towards heaven could be likened to a form of a silent prayer, a cry onto God who lives in the heavens for help. True healing of the mind and the body comes from above. It is only the touch of the LORD that can bring mental healing and wholeness.

14. Dreams can be fulfilled in either positive or negative ways.

King Nebuchadnezzar had a dream which was interpreted onto him by Daniel. Further to this, Daniel took time to explain to the king what could be done to avert the danger that lies ahead if he continued to live in pride and fail to recognize the sovereignty of God. After 12 months, the dream was fulfilled when he took no action to avert it. Sometimes, your inaction about a particular situation does not mean that nothing will happen. The vision and the prophesy about the destruction of King Nebuchadnezzar was still running at the background though nothing was done about it. Prophecies, dreams and visions do not die in silence and become inactive; they are rather active and very potent in silence. One of the lessons here to learn is that, if you do not do something about your dreams and visions, something will still happen anyway.

15. Learn to give all glory to God.

When the sanity of King Nebuchadnezzar was restored and having learnt his lessons in life now, he gave all glory and honour onto the LORD. He declared: “At the end of that time, I, Nebuchadnezzar, raised my eyes toward heaven, and my sanity was restored. Then I praised the Most High; I honored and glorified him who lives forever”. King Nebuchadnezzar again declared in Daniel 4:37 saying “Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and exalt and glorify the King of heaven, because everything he does is right and all his ways are just. And those who walk in pride he is able to humble”.

In this verse, King Nebuchadnezzar has learnt his lesson to give

  • All praises to God for all he has and acquired in life
  • Direct all the exaltation to God
  • And finally direct all glory to God for everything he has in life.

In life, regardless of how far you go, how wealthy you are, how famous and how powerful you have become, you must learn not to be carried away by physical possessions and the earthly glories of this world. Remember that God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.

Have you read the whole book of Daniel or at least a chapter or studied chapter 4? How many of the 15 lessons to learn from Daniel Chapter 4 have you come across while reading the book of Daniel? Kindly comment or share the 15 lessons to learn from Daniel Chapter 4 to friends and loved ones.

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