“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 image’s head was of fine gold, its chest and arms of silver, its belly and thighs of bronze, its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of clay. You 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. Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver, and the gold were crushed together, and became like chaff from the summer threshing floors; the wind carried them away so that no trace of them was found. And the stone that struck the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth.”
King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream serves as a timeline of world kingdoms, from the time of Daniel until the return of Christ. The image refers to six kingdoms, five that are temporary, and one that will last forever. Four of the six have already come and gone, while the final two are still in our future. The fulfillment of the first four gives us assurance of the fulfillment of the final two.
The first kingdom, represented by the gold head, was Babylon. It was a splendid kingdom with great power that seemed unconquerable, until a coalition of the Medes and Persians combined and defeated them. This second kingdom, represented by the chest of silver, spread to become the largest empire the world had ever seen, and ruled the Middle East for over two hundred years. Their expansion took them as far west as Greece. It was their attack upon Greece which led to their downfall. It was a young king from northern Greece who gathered the fractured city states, and overthrew Persia. Greece, the bronze belly, ruled the world until the rise of the Roman Empire, represented by the legs of iron.
The final two kingdoms are yet to come upon the world stage. Daniel uses the imagery of ten toes to describe a ten nation empire, somehow connected with Rome. This empire will rule until the time when the Kingdom of Christ is set up in the world. Jesus, seen as a large stone, will defeat world empires and set up His kingdom, which will be ruled with righteousness and governed with peace.
Today we live somewhere between two kingdoms. The world stage is becoming more and more global in its focus, and will soon begin to specifically fulfill the predictions of Daniel. The way to prepare for what is coming, is to become a citizen of the kingdom of God. John wrote,
John 1:12 “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name”
Are you ready for the reign of Christ? Have you received Him, had your sins washed away and turned from your old life? Are you living for the Kingdom which is still to come?