Daniel: Being Faithful in Uncertain Times
Malcolm Down Publishing Ltd
OverviewThis book shows how chapters 4-6 of the book of Daniel in the Bible, although they were written two and a half millennia ago, are highly relevant to life today. It examines the issue of faithfulness through the lens of Daniel’s life in middle and old age. He was able to stay faithful to God and faithful to the kings he served right to the end of his life, despite the many difficult moral choices, challenges and threats that he faced along the way. This book also taps into issues of faithfulness in society today. In years gone by my faithfulness, say, to a particular bank would be rewarded by being valued as an esteemed customer and being personally known by my local branch manager. Now we are rewarded for being unfaithful, for regularly switching to another bank, another energy provider or another insurer. Both my father and my father-in-law worked for the same company all their working lives, and the company acted faithfully towards them. Now it is not unusual to have had half a dozen jobs before the age of forty; and many companies have no compunction in making long-serving staff redundant if they deem it necessary. In personal relationships, questions are being asked whether it is any longer necessary to remain faithful to the same person in marriage for a whole lifetime. Is it not preferable to accept when a marriage is dead and move on to another partner? Should we not have more ‘open’ marriages, where we avoid the boredom of one partner and relate sexually to other people as well? Christians, as much as anybody else, face these important moral questions in today’s society. However, they rely not just on the debate going on in society, but also on the book that guides them in the conduct of their life, the Bible. That book says that faithfulness is an important characteristic to value because it is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22). When the life of God enters into our inner being, through his Spirit, faithfulness will inevitably develop. This is also a reflection of the man whom we are called to follow. HIs name ‘is called Faithful and True’ (Revelation 19:11). As the life of God works within us, we are called to reproduce Jesus’ character in our lives. Daniel will help us to understand how we can cooperate with God in this process.
Author BioMichael T. Gowen ================
For most of his working life Michael Gowen has been involved in church leadership. Including twenty-five years in Brussels, Belgium. Now retired, he is a member of the Birmingham Vineyard Church where he is still involved in training and mentoring leaders. He is married to Liz with three grown-up children and seven grandchildren.