Today's sermon centers around a provocative question - a question that countless Christians have contemplated over the ages. How should we, the people of the church, behave towards the great political powers under the shadow of whose authority we go about our daily mission? Or, to put all that far more bluntly, what’s our relationship to the state? When should we disobey? When should we cooperate? How can we avoid being corrupted should we cooperate? In answering these questions, the prophetic vision found in the book of Daniel, chapter 7, is very helpful. In his dream, the prophet Daniel sees four terrible beasts emerging from the sea. Later, in the second part of his vision, he sees "an ancient one" and "one like a Son of Man" reigning on a throne. As strange as this vision may seem, it does offer a great deal of insight into how the people of God (whether the church or the nation of Israel) ought to relate to the political powers that dominate our age.