27. No matter how great and extensive the changes on the world stage, these all occurred according to what, as Daniel’s comment on Nebuchadnezzar’s dream shows?
27 In truth, all these shiftings of the world scenery through the centuries to its present setting on the world stage of action called for great, extensive changes. But all these were according to the foreknowledge of the Most High God, at his own times and seasons, inasmuch as he foresaw them all. He let nothing occur to block his purpose. Thousands of years ago these things were all dark to the human mind. Even concerning the prophecies that were given to him, with a partial explanation, Daniel said: “I heard, but I did not understand.” (Dan. 12:8, RS) Yet from what Jehovah God revealed to Daniel by the dramatic explanation of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream of the golden-headed image, Daniel got some penetration into the depth of God’s forevision. So Daniel said: “He knows what is in the darkness, and the light [concerning these things] dwells with him”; “he reveals deep and mysterious things” to his people.
28. In support of Jehovah’s rulership and ability to give rulership, what did Daniel say to foretell the greatest and grandest change on earth?
28 The most tremendous change of all lifts to a grand climax the truth that “the Most High rules the kingdom of men, and gives it to whom he will.” Daniel was inspired to foretell Jehovah’s making of the greatest and grandest change on earth in God’s time and at his season by saying: “In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed, nor shall its sovereignty be left to another people. It shall break in pieces all these kingdoms and bring them to an end, and it shall stand for ever.”—Dan. 2:44, RS.
29-31. Why could not the “lowliest of men” that is set up over the kingdom of men mean either the Anglo-American world power or world communism?
29 Over 2,500 years ago Daniel foretold this marvelous change. Today we are living in the very midst of it. In our day Jehovah sets up over the kingdom of men one who is called the “lowliest of men.” Who is this “lowliest of men”?
30 In our day democracy and communism are hotly contending with each other. Democracy is of the lowly common people. Yet this “lowliest of men” could never be the mighty champion of democracy, the Anglo-American world power. This seventh world power of history is stricken out as the “lowliest of men” by Jehovah’s prophecy, which said: “He shall speak words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and shall think to change the times and the law . . . [This world power] magnified itself, even up to the Prince of the host [of heaven]; and the continual burnt offering was taken away from him, and the place of his sanctuary was overthrown.”—Dan. 7:25; 8:11, RS.
31 On the other hand, Russian communism is claimed to be the rule of the proletariat, the unpropertied class. Yet the “lowliest of men” could never be the system of ungodly world communism. Striking out that political movement which persistently aims at world domination, Jehovah God’s angel said: “He shall exalt himself and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak astonishing things against the God of gods. . . . he shall magnify himself above all. He shall honor the god of fortresses instead of these; a god whom his fathers did not know he shall honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. He shall deal with the strongest fortresses by the help of a foreign god; those who acknowledge him he shall magnify with honor.” (Dan. 11:36-39, RS) Those prophetic descriptions foretold no lowliness of spirit in either the Anglo-American world power or in its modern-day challenger, communism.
32, 33. Who truly is this “lowliest of men,” and how was this fact proved?
32 The one who is truly the “lowliest of men” is without compare. He is no degraded man, although he is so lowly. No other creature in heaven or on earth could lower himself so deeply for the glory of God and for the everlasting good of man as this lowly one did. Why not? Because, before he showed how lowly in spirit he is, he was existing in God’s form as a spirit creature in heaven. He was God’s first-born and only-begotten Son, by means of whom all other creatures in heaven and earth were made.
33 In spite of his being first among all creatures of Jehovah God, he did not meditate on usurping God’s position and pretending to be equal with God. He did not try to magnify himself to the “Prince of the host” of heaven, nor did he “speak astonishing things against the God of gods,” Jehovah. To the contrary, says the sacred Record, “he emptied himself and took a slave’s form and came to be in the likeness of men. More than that, when he found himself in fashion as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient as far as death, yes, death on a torture stake.” (Phil. 2:5-8) He spoke honestly about himself when he invited the toiling, loaded-down ones to come to him for relief. Far from being overbearing and oppressive, he said: “I am mild-tempered and lowly in heart.” (Matt. 11:28, 29) In lowly submission to the will of his God and heavenly Father he taught his disciples to pray: “Our Father in the heavens, let your name be sanctified. Let your kingdom come. Let your will come to pass, as in heaven, also upon earth.”—Matt. 6:9, 10.
The Divine Will Done in Heaven and Earth
1. What was it that got Jesus out of his carpenter shop and led him to John the Baptist?
UP TO thirty years of age Jesus was a carpenter in the obscure town of Nazareth in the despised province of Galilee. Rome was then dominating the earth as the sixth world power. What was it that got Jesus out of his carpenter shop and out of his obscurity? It was the announcement by John the Baptist, “The kingdom of the heavens has drawn near.” Jesus later taught his disciples to seek first God’s kingdom. So how could he hold himself down to carpentering when the interests of the kingdom of the heavens, that is, the kingdom of God, were to be served? Jewish people were repenting of their sins and being baptized by John in preparation for that kingdom, to be in subjection to it rather than to the pagan Roman Empire. How, then, could Jesus himself hold back from going to John the Baptist and declaring