Daniel, Chapter 2: Part 4
The next eight verses of Daniel Chapter 2 are a conversation between the King and the Chaldeans…or we could say the natural mind is thinking. He has his thoughts and thoughts from the demons which are all going around and around in his mind regarding his identity. He does not realize some of his thoughts are from demons. Remember, the Chaldeans (demons) spoke in Syriak which means “to deceive.” If we knew demons were interjecting thoughts, we would not be deceived. We think all our thoughts are ours but some of them can be coming from the enemy.
Dan 2:5 (1) The king answered and said to the Chaldeans, The thing is gone from me: (2) if ye will not make known unto me the dream, with the interpretation thereof, ye shall be cut in pieces, and your houses shall be made a dunghill. (The numbers 1 and 2 in parentheses were added by me to aid in my interpretation as seen below.)
(1) The natural mind knows that by his own efforts he cannot come up with a true identity. We all need someone to tell us who we are. I am reminded of the legend of Romulus and Remus, two boys who were raised by wolves. In fact, there are many legends in different cultures of children being raised by wolves. In all instances, the human children acted like wolves…walked on all fours, barked, snarled and had many wolf-like characteristics. Of ourselves, we cannot form an identity.
(2) The king, going over thoughts in his mind that he believes are only his but are actually interspersed with demonic thoughts, feels that if he cannot find his identity he will go to pieces and become something no one else would want (dunghill…the only house a demon can have is a living body, a human body. A dunghill is something foul and to be avoided). He, as all people, wants to be someone others admire and want to be with.
Dan 2:6 – But if ye show the dream, and the interpretation thereof, ye shall receive of me gifts and rewards and great honour: therefore show me the dream, and the interpretation thereof.
Remember, these are the king’s (natural mind’s) own thoughts. He is thinking, If someone will help me know that I am valuable and loved, then I will know I have an identity. Then people will respect me and honor me and good things will come into my life because I am a valuable person. Good things happen to good people, he reasons.
This kind of thinking causes pain in his life. Whenever he fails to receive honor or a gift or a reward, for example, he thinks it happened because he is a bad person. Every negative thing in his life translates out as being an attack on his worthiness as a person. In serious cases, when something bad happens to another person, this person assumes it was his fault. He has thoughts such as, “If I had not been here, that never would happened” even though he had nothing to do with the incident.
Almost everyone has this kind of thinking to some extent. We equate our success with our value. The pastor thinks, if my church grows and people like my preaching, then I have worth and value. The teacher thinks, if the principal takes notice of how well my class is doing, then I am valuable…and so on. We cause ourselves a lot of grief with this kind of thinking.
Dan 2:7 – They answered again and said, Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will show the interpretation of it.
We need to remember that the natural mind is thinking about his identity. He is asking the questions “Does my life count for anything? Am I valuable?” All human beings long to have this question answered for them by the praise and acceptance of those around them. We try our best to excel or be the best at something so we will feel a sense of identity. Some people were raised without affirmation and formed an abuse identity. They might only feel like they have an identity when someone abuses them. Strange as it may seem, an abuse identity is better than no identity at all. This is why an abused woman will keep returning to an abusive husband. Even though she may be battered and bruised, at least she feels an identity when around him. To have no identity is intolerable. To attempt forming a new one is frightening. Abused persons need loving people around them to help them form a new identity in Christ.
When the demons say, tell us the dream, they are saying, according to this spiritual interpretation, “You need to determine your identity on your own.” The fact is no one can do this. As we shall see a few verses after this, the king (natural mind) becomes angry and frustrated by this feeling that he has to do it all on his own.
When the demons say, “We will interpret it,” they mean what they say. They love to tell us things about our identity in their attempts to spoil our lives. We may be certain that when we try to form an identity on our own, demons will always be there to tell us lies. They say things like, “You are no good. No matter how hard you try, you’ll never measure up. Go ahead, let him hit you again, then you’ll feel better.”
To be continued…