Partly Strong, Partly Fragile

“…and so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly fragile.” Daniel 2:42b

Our text describes the feet and toes of the great statue that king Nebuchadnezzar saw in his dream. Daniel, aided by the God of Heaven who “reveals secrets” explained the meaning to the king. The feet were a mixture of iron and clay. Partly strong, but partly weak. The statue was a description of the declining glory and strength of all the kingdoms of men, and their eventual destruction by the glorious kingdom of Heaven by Jesus Christ.

But for our purposes, there is something very instructive in this reminder of a kingdom that is “partly strong and partly fragile.” Here is a great picture of the current state of heart belonging to the Christian. The Christian is a new man, but presently a mixed man. He has a new heart, but the flesh is still very much a living enemy. There is the outward man that is perishing, and the inward man who is being renewed day by day.

What Christian is there that does not know and feel that he is “partly fragile?” Oh how just a little spark of temptation can sometimes result in a forest fire of sin! Oh how just a little injury to our pride can result in the harshest of replies and bitterness. How easy it is for us to wander. How easy to slide into sin. We, like Peter, can be sifted like wheat in a moment. Take heed, O Christian, if you see not this fragile part of your soul! Boast not, we who have been grafted in, for how easily we could be pruned off if left to ourselves! Oh partly fragile? We feel so much of our fragile, weak, corrupt nature at times.

But, look, Oh Christian, and know the truth, that you are also “partly strong.” Think of the strength that is in you dearly beloved. Is the Holy Spirit within you? Is He not strong? What of that hope that is within you? Have you no hope? Surely you do. And that hope is an anchor to our souls, both steadfast and sure. And what of Christ Himself? Is He not within you? Surely He is, and “greater is He that is in you, than he who is in the world.” Oh think about and be encouraged with the strength you have. You have a strong suit of armor that no dart of the enemy can pierce. You have a strong Bible in your hands, and that Word can dwell in you richly. Oh, and what of your prayers? They lay hold of Omnipotence! Oh, partly strong? There is so much strength my dear believer, that we are tempted to forget about the weakness, for “His grace is sufficient”.

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