Courage and obedience wherever we are: A Closer Look at Daniel

Of Daniel, many good things can be said of him. One, of course is that he was beloved of God. It isn’t hard to see why. Daniel was continually faithful, even in the face of death.

Daniel was one of the youth, probably 12 to 15 years old, of noble blood taken captive to Babylon when King Nebuchadnezzar besieged Jerusalem. Not wanting to defile himself with the food and wine of the Babylonians, Daniel requested permission to eat vegetables and drink water. By placing God first; God granted Daniel and the others with him favor with the king.

The king talked with them, and he found none equal to Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah; so they entered the king’s service. 20 In every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king questioned them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters in his whole kingdom.

God granted Daniel with a great ability to interpret dreams and visions—which included the dreams of Nebuchadnezzar, the vision of the famous “handwriting on the wall” which signified the end of the Babylonians through the Medes and Persians; and prophetic end-times visions.

Daniel earned favor with the leaders who surrounded him, and Daniel became chief of the wise men, was in the gate of the king, and governor over the whole province of Babylon under Nebuchadnezzar. Belshazzar made him the third ruler in his kingdom; and Darius made him one of the three presidents to whom his 120 satraps were to give account. R. Dick Wilson, in the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, states that, “in all of these positions he seems to have conducted himself with faithfulness and judgment” (biblestudytools.com).

Daniel’s faithfulness in the matters of state earned special recognition from the king, which provoked jealously among the other leaders. To get at Daniel, the satraps and other presidents convinced Nebuchadnezzar to make a decree that would place Daniel in jeopardy. Children are taught from a young age the story of Daniel in the Lion’s Den. Here, we can see the faithfulness of Daniel praying to YAHWEH even when he knew it would mean certain death. But God saved Daniel (like He did with his counterparts Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego) from violent death.

Daniel’s life is one that shows us that our continued obedience to God results in favor and blessings from God, even though it does not mean we would be spared hardships and persecution. It also shows us that God can place us and use us wherever we happen to be, so He can show Himself to whomever He wants however He wants. We need to be obedient, courageous and faithful.

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