Daniel 6:1 “It pleased Darius…”
We switch from the reign of the Babylonians to that of the Medes/Persians. The earthly government has changed, but God still has His servant Daniel where He wants him.
1-3 “…set over the kingdom an hundred and twenty princes, which should be over the whole kingdom…three presidents; of whom Daniel was first…Daniel was preferred above the presidents and princes…king thought to set him over the whole realm”
Daniel’s continued faithfulness was still causing him to stand out from the crowd. This new king wasn’t blind to it and sought to have Daniel be responsible for everything. But as he was promoted above others, I can see trouble coming.
4 “…presidents and princes sought to find occasion against Daniel concerning the kingdom…”
Jealousy in the workplace is certainly not a new thing.
4 “…they could find none occasion nor fault; forasmuch as he was faithful…”
Totally faithful in his civic duties, even though he was in a foreign land serving another king who didn’t acknowledge God. Some may point to this as reason for us to compromise with earthly governments. However, Daniel never compromised when it came to sin or disobedience to God. If doing our civic duty contradicts our service to God, we must make our stand with God.
5 “…We shall not find any occasion against this Daniel, except we find it against him concerning the law of his God”
Wow. What a statement. What a testimony to have your enemies say the only thing they could find against you was that you were faithful to Almighty God.
6-9 “…presidents and princes assembled together to the king…All the presidents…have consulted together…whosoever shall ask a petition of any God or man…save of thee, O king…establish the decree, and sign the writing, that it be not changed…king Darius signed the writing and the decree”
The men Darius had set up as his subordinate rulers have gathered together to make a fool of him. Daniel obviously didn’t sign off on their little plan, so they lied about all the rulers coming together. And they were appealing to Darius’s vanity which should have raised a red flag for him. But he fell for it.
10 “when Daniel knew…he went into his house…he kneeled upon his knees three times a day…as he did aforetime”
Bad news didn’t deter Daniel from doing what he had always done in being faithful to God, even though he knew what it meant. It may have gotten past the king, but Daniel knew it was a plot against him. But it didn’t stop him from trusting God.
11 “…these men assembled, and found Daniel praying and making supplication before his God”
Premeditated action. They didn’t just happen to stumble across Daniel praying.
13-14 “…Daniel…regardeth not thee…the king…was sore displeased with himself…he laboured till the going down of the sun to deliver him”
They closed the trap. They had set up the king to do away with Daniel, waited to catch Daniel in the act, and now have brought the news before the king to seal the deal. Too late the king realizes he has been duped and is upset with himself. He tries everything he can think of to fix the problem, but knows he’s been tricked.
15 “…these men assembled unto the king…law of the Medes and Persians…no decree…may be changed”
So they have gone from flattering the king to the point of worship to insisting he do something he doesn’t want to do, and they’re using his own laws to do it. Really puts a stamp on their hypocrisy.
16 “…Thy God whom thou servest continually, he will deliver thee”
Darius could see the power of the God of Daniel, yet he doesn’t choose to follow Him himself. A statement on the sinfulness of man. The king could see that his subjects could be saved by their God, but selfish pride in his own power wouldn’t let him admit to his own needs. Almost as if the king considered himself almost if not completely equal with any other god. Commentary says a common reference to the leaders was Lord-King, so this may have been the case.
20 “…is thy God, whom thou servest continually, able to deliver thee from the lions?”
Still doesn’t realize Who he is dealing with. Refers to the living God, but has no clue.
22 “My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions’ mouths, that they have not hurt me: forasmuch as before him innocency was found in me; and also before thee, O king, have I done no hurt.”
Daniel had not only done nothing wrong with respect to God, he had also not done anything against the king, although he obviously broke the law. Breaking an unjust and ungodly law does not constitute wrong doing. He didn’t do it out of disrespect for the king, but out of obedience to Almighty God. Many of America’s founding fathers understood this. They would go so far as to say that true patriots have a responsibility, a duty to not obey an unjust law. Civil disobedience must not be from anarchy or vengeance, but from obedience due to the higher loyalty, that of God Himself.
23 “…no manner of hurt was found upon him…”
Just like his friends when they came out of the furnace. As though nothing had happened.
24 “…the king commanded…those men which had accused Daniel…cast them into the den of lions, them, their children, and their wives”
The men got what they deserved, but their families also suffered from their sin. We must not forget how dangerous sin it. The innocent suffer along with the guilty on this fallen earth.
25-26 “…King Darius wrote…I make a decree, That in every dominion of my kingdom men tremble and fear before the God of Daniel…”
This is at least the second time the peoples of the known world have been given a decree about the power of Almighty God. All things belong to God. He can use anything within the physical universe as He sees fit.
28 “…Daniel prospered in the reign of Darius, and in the reign of Cyrus the Persian”
Chapter 1 mentions that Daniel served until the first year of Cyrus, while later chapters will mention he was still around during the third year of Cyrus. Not a contradiction. Shows that Daniel served completely through the reign of the Babylonians. Doesn’t mention how far into the reign of the Medes/Persians he would go. The biggest take away is that he was faithful throughout, and that God was with him all the way.
I hope you enjoy reading and studying His word. May it accomplish what He desires. Please feel free to comment or post questions. Thanks for reading!