Stones Hill Community Church
Living in the Lion's Den: The People of God in Exile
What is happening to our world? You and I are witnessing at warp speed the devolution of a nation. If things move toward a “post-Christian nation” and some are now arguing that this is the case, then how should the people of God operate when relegated to the cultural margins? What is the way forward in a hostile world? Welcome to the Old Testament book of Daniel!
Locations & Times
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  • Ligonier, IN
    151 W Stones Hill Rd, Ligonier, IN 46767, USA
    Saturday 5:00 PM
We welcome you to Stone's Hill today!

A typical Stone's Hill service has:

* music (so feel free to sing out);

* some announcements (things that are upcoming that you can be a part of);

* a message out of the Bible (God speaks to us through his Word);

* and an opportunity for you to respond to the message (either immediately in the case of a decision that needs to be made OR in the future as you live out the message in your daily life.)

So relax and enjoy your morning! We're so glad you are here!

Overview of the Book of Daniel

By the Bible Project

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9cSC9uobtPM

The Way of the Exile

By the Bible Project

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XzWpa0gcPyo

Living in the Lion's Den: The People of God in Exile

PowerPoint Message Slides

https://www.dropbox.com/s/cqk5n1for6fuxxz/sermon%2010%20-%20daniel_series.pptx?dl=0
Living in the Lion's Den: The People of God in Exile
Post-Christian Culture
It has been said that our world is becoming a “post-Christian” world. Post means after. Christian means an era of time when Christ and His teachings were a dominant influence in society. Culture means the way we think and value things. This means that, over the course of recent generations, there has been an observed decline in the Church’s influence in society. In a post-Christian culture, the dominant worldview is no longer founded on Christian principles — or at least we can no longer assume that they will be.

As the church enters this time of exile from the center to the margins, we must have a vision through the unique challenges that are presented. As a Christian, in a hostile environment where the dominant values run counter to one’s own, you now experience exile while you REMAIN in your homeland. Just demonstrate that you are unwilling to conform to the tyranny of majority opinion, and you’ll know exile while still at home – forced removals, cancellations, disenfranchisement, job losses.

The Way Forward
What is the way forward in a hostile world? Discerning the meaning of the present moment requires sobriety for no one knows how hostile it may become. Eventually, a post-Christian society moves from assuming Christian values to ignoring them, to resenting them, to repressing them, and eventually to persecuting them. What was once Christian and is now post-Christian will eventually become anti-Christian, led by those who actively destroy it.

Strangers, Aliens, Exiles
God’s people do their best work when in exile. We always have. Exile infuses communities with new creative energy that rises to meet the challenges of new cultural circumstances. The way forward is to look around and understand our context, to look back and gather the resources the Word affords to us, and then to look forward with a clear vision of how we can function as the Lord’s people in a time of contemporary exile.

That’s why we have transitioned to “A Biblical Worldview Church.” It’s a vision for how to do life in cultural exile and it empowers you to come together with a game plan that will prepare your family to live in this world rather than just integrate with dominant culture. It’s the local church that can form a vibrant counterculture.

Exiles on Assignment
How do we build biblical worldview communities within our condition of internal exile, and under increasingly hostile conditions? Can we live with joy and confidence though marginalized? If you’re caught between a host empire you cannot embrace and a church that has no worldview mission, where do you go?

For much of recent history individuals and Biblical Worldview institutions could plan, execute, and flourish with their visions of a better world. That may no longer be the case in a few years. But don’t despair. For in the midst of the chaos of a crisis comes opportunity. The history of the church tells us that crisis always precedes renewal, and the framework of renewal offers us new ways forward. A Non-Anxious Presence shows how that renewal happens and offers churches and leaders strategic ways to awaken the Church and see our culture changed for Christ.

The question is: How? How can we engage a post-Christian society? How can we influence a culture which is desperate to press you into it’s mold? This is not to say that God isn’t at work in dominant culture. He has his “Daniel’s” strategically placed to do His bidding in the “Babylon’s” of the world. There are others who are being prepared to become “Esthers” (in Persia) and “Jonahs” (in Ninevah) and “Josephs” (in Egypt) – those who bring a biblical worldview to the culture, but within the culture itself.

So our primary job is not to make everything “Christian” in culture. Our job is to live out a Biblical Worldview wherever we find ourselves and bear witness to the truth. But, there’s no room for neutrality. The corrosive soil and polluted air of a secular worldview will have to be breathed by your children. You will face marginalization for living out a Biblical Worldview.

























Living in the Lion’s Den: The People of God in Exile
Daniel 5:1-31
Daniel gives these incredible insights as to how we can live in a post-Christian culture, a secular age that wants to push a Biblical Worldview to the margins, if not completely out of the picture. So far, our sermons in the Daniel series can be succinctly stated:

Jer. 29:1-14 – Live your life
Dan. 1:1-7 – Stamp your child
Dan. 1:1-7 – Draw your line
Dan. 1:8-21 – Stand your ground
Dan. 1:8-21 – Love your people
Dan. 2:1-23 - Face your crisis
Dan. 2:24-49 - Know your prophecy
Dan. 3:1-30 - Trust your Savior
Dan. 3:1-30 - Understand your culture
Dan. 4:1-37 – Guard your mind
Dan. 4:1-37 – Surrender your pride
Dan. 5:1-31 - Honor your God

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The Passage Contents
Living in the Lion’s Den: The People of God in Exile.
Your knees are knocking. The Handwriting is on wall. Your number is up. Have you ever wondered where those phrases came from? Daniel 5.
***
To this day, our culture uses the phrase – the handwriting is on the wall – to refer to unchangeably bad news. This is where that phrase originated. We’ll talk about an ancient king today who made common what God said was sacred. He relativized God’s absolutes. He took something holy and treated it like a bar mug.
***
Are we doing this today? Gender is something we decide based on feelings or perception, sex acts with multiple others in hook-up arrangements or serial sexual monogamy with many boyfriends / girlfriends, and if babies result, they are dismembered in a womb. And when we make the sacred common, eventually, we have a VIP invitation to sit down to a banquet of consequences. Just ask Will Smith about that.
***
Belshazzar’s character is revealed through his actions and speeches. Here’s what we learn. He had…
1. A spiritual insensitivity of apathy and indifference. This masked a hostility that Belshazzar had toward spiritual things. He hated God and refused to honor Him. Do the party thing to take the edge off.
2. An arrogant self-security in his abilities and resources. Did you notice that they were having this feast because they thought their city was impregnable? What could happen to them? Now a lot of people have that fortress America concept. Hey, this is America. We can’t lose. It’ll come just so fast. Why? Because they believed their own resources were enough.
3. A disrespectful lack of appreciation for what history could teach him and a greed for the material. He wasn’t willing to learn from anyone. His Queen Mom had to plead with him to consider what Daniel could tell him. All the lies, all the hypocrisies, all the self-seeking, all the harm done to others—all this will fill the scale. You will be weighed. And as you stand there without Christ that great scale of God is going to go crashing down on the side of your just doom and condemnation. Tekel. Too lite.
4. A personal immorality marked by entitlement and consumption. He chased women and his lusts and it robbed him of his focus and mission. The city fell on his watch. He was spent on his pleasures. They were having a party while the end of the world was a few hours away - crazy about entertainment, wives, and concubines, and sex, and dancing, and drinking, and feeding themselves.

***
When we're placed on God's scale, we're all too lite. That's why we need Jesus. Turn to Him today!


Dismissal Song

Jesus Only You (Lyrics) - Kathryn Scott ft. Martin Smith

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gwsMYaeA09I&t=6s

The Story of the Bible

The Bible Project

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7_CGP-12AE0&t=29s

The Entire Gospel in Five Minutes

The Story Film

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f0gfIvN9zv4

Online Sermon Archive

Stones Hill Community Church Sermons

https://www.youtube.com/c/StonesHillCommunityChurch/videos

Ask a Question

A place to ask Pastor Joey questions anonymously.

https://shccpastor.tumblr.com/ask