We continue to study our theme of Big God Theology from the backdrop of Daniel and the three Hebrew boys. The last study found us looking at Belshazzar, the son of Nebuchadnezzar. I find in the son’s life that this Big God is ‘A God Of Retribution’. Retribution is a reward or punishment suitable for the action.
Today our study takes us to Daniel 5:5 where we find in the realm of retribution you can ‘look for reaping’. Whatsoever a man sows that shall he also reap. The way of the transgressor is hard.
In verse 5 after the king defies God by using the Holy vessels for an earthly purpose he sees ‘The Hand Of Reaping’. The text tells us that while they are drinking and having a good time the ‘hand of God’ appears and begins to write on the wall. I don’t think it is a note to the king telling him what a fine job he has done. I would rather have His hand on me than against me. To some His hand can be such a source of comfort to others a great source of condemnation. It is the same hand that flung the stars in space. It is the hand that lifted the little children up into His arms. The same hand that touched blinded eyes, healed a leper, and touched deathbeds has now come out against this king. It has come with a message of sowing and reaping.
In verse 6 I find ‘The Horror Of Reaping’. It seems that man is never ready to reap the whirlwind of what he has sown. The Bible says ‘his countenance was changed’. The word means a noticeable alteration. His ‘thoughts were troubled’. The phrase means to be suddenly agitated and terrified. His ‘knees were knocking’ and ‘his joints were loose’ and he went to the ground. O, how quickly the Big God can melt the frame of a mere man. You always reap what you sow. You always reap more than you sow and often you reap where you didn’t sow. The Bible says we can reap to the 5th and 6th generations. For me that could involve 600-700 people by my 5th and 6th generation. Let me be so careful what I reap spiritually before the Lord. I am reminded of planting a corn seed and if it is a hybrid seed it will produce first a shoot, then a stalk taller than the average man. It will have silk tasseled at the top. Can you imagine all of that in one small seed? There will be 8 ears on the stalk and each one will have 200 kernels of corn. That amounts to a ratio of 1600 to 1 of sowing and reaping. Lord, let me be careful in sowing sin. Let me sow righteousness and reap a big crop of God righteousness in my grandchildren and great grandchildren.
In verses 16-17 I find ‘The Hearing Of The Reaper’. He told Daniel the he had heard that he could give the interpretation of strange things. The king says if Daniel can tell him what the message on the wall means he will give him clothes of scarlet, a gold chain, and make him third in the kingdom. Daniel told him that he could keep his gifts because he had plenty. In verses 19-20 he takes the king on a walk down memory lane. He reminds him of the retribution his Daddy suffered for sin. Daniel told him that he might have thought that his Daddy was a mad man but it was while he was out there eating grass for seven years that he met the God of Heaven. The life his Dad had lived prior to that had already affected him for unrighteousness. He that soweth to the flesh will of the flesh reap the whirlwind. He that sows to the flesh will reap corruption. Job said, ‘Even as I have seen’. He is speaking for first hand observation. They that plow iniquity and sow wickedness reap the same. It is such a simple principle but so hard to get into our heart of practice. I remind us of Paul’s words of ‘Be not deceived. God is not mocked; for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to the flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.’