The Book of Daniel, ch. 6: Daniel Thrown into the Den of Lions.
Daniel is Untouched by the Ravenous Beasts!
[Daniel 6:1] IT PLEASED DARIUS TO SET OVER THE KINGDOM AN HUNDRED AND TWENTY PRINCES, WHICH SHOULD BE OVER THE WHOLE KINGDOM;
[Daniel 6:2] AND OVER THESE THREE PRESIDENTS; OF WHOM DANIEL WAS FIRST: THAT THE PRINCES MIGHT GIVE ACCOUNTS UNTO THEM, AND THE KING SHOULD HAVE NO DAMAGE.
The Empire was divided into 120 Provinces with a Prince over each one. The administration of the Empire was then placed in the hands of three rulers (underneath the king) of whom Daniel was the Senior Authority. Daniel had in effect been appointed to such a post just before Babylon was conquered. Ancient Empires often left the administrators of nations they conquered in their former posts. NO DAMAGE: Not be bothered with administrative details.
[Daniel 6:3] THEN THIS DANIEL WAS PREFERRED ABOVE THE PRESIDENTS AND PRINCES, BECAUSE AN EXCELLENT SPIRIT WAS IN HIM; AND THE KING THOUGHT TO SET HIM OVER THE WHOLE REALM.
He was already the first of three over the kingdom but the monarch considered making his authority more explicitly paramount.
[Daniel 6:4] THEN THE PRESIDENTS AND PRINCES SOUGHT TO FIND OCCASION AGAINST DANIEL CONCERNING THE KINGDOM; BUT THEY COULD FIND NONE OCCASION NOR FAULT; FORASMUCH AS HE WAS FAITHFUL, NEITHER WAS THERE ANY ERROR OR FAULT FOUND IN HIM.
[Daniel 6:5] THEN SAID THESE MEN, WE SHALL NOT FIND ANY OCCASION AGAINST THIS DANIEL, EXCEPT WE FIND IT AGAINST HIM CONCERNING THE LAW OF HIS GOD.
They were jealous of Daniel the individual but sought to harm this individual by attacking the Jewish Religion.
[Daniel 6:6] THEN THESE PRESIDENTS AND PRINCES ASSEMBLED TOGETHER TO THE KING, AND SAID THUS UNTO HIM, KING DARIUS, LIVE FOR EVER.
[Daniel 6:7] ALL THE PRESIDENTS OF THE KINGDOM, THE GOVERNORS, AND THE PRINCES, THE COUNSELLORS, AND THE CAPTAINS, HAVE CONSULTED TOGETHER TO ESTABLISH A ROYAL STATUTE, AND TO MAKE A FIRM DECREE, THAT WHOSOEVER SHALL ASK A PETITION OF ANY GOD OR MAN FOR THIRTY DAYS, SAVE OF THEE, O KING, HE SHALL BE CAST INTO THE DEN OF LIONS.
[Daniel 6:8] NOW, O KING, ESTABLISH THE DECREE, AND SIGN THE WRITING, THAT IT BE NOT CHANGED, ACCORDING TO THE LAW OF THE MEDES AND PERSIANS, WHICH ALTERETH NOT.
This peculiar principle is also recalled in the Book of Esther. "LET IT BE WRITTEN AMONG THE LAWS OF THE PERSIANS AND THE MEDES, THAT IT BE NOT ALTERED" [Esther 1:19].
[Daniel 6:9] WHEREFORE KING DARIUS SIGNED THE WRITING AND THE DECREE.
[Daniel 6:10] NOW WHEN DANIEL KNEW THAT THE WRITING WAS SIGNED, HE WENT INTO HIS HOUSE; AND HIS WINDOWS BEING OPEN IN HIS CHAMBER TOWARD JERUSALEM, HE KNEELED UPON HIS KNEES THREE TIMES A DAY, AND PRAYED, AND GAVE THANKS BEFORE HIS GOD, AS HE DID AFORETIME.
<<THREE TIMES>>: This was also the practice of King David: EVENING, AND MORNING, AND AT NOON, WILL I PRAY, AND CRY ALOUD: AND HE SHALL HEAR MY VOICE [Psalms 55:17]. Daniel kneeled down with the windows open and prayed towards Jerusalem. This is still the practice of Religious Jews who pray three times a day: Early Morning, Afternoon, and Night. They do not bow however. Some Protestant and Puritan groups such as the Plymouth Brethren also forbade bowing.
[Daniel 6:11] THEN THESE MEN ASSEMBLED, AND FOUND DANIEL PRAYING AND MAKING SUPPLICATION BEFORE HIS GOD.
[Daniel 6:12] THEN THEY CAME NEAR, AND SPAKE BEFORE THE KING CONCERNING THE KING'S DECREE; HAST THOU NOT SIGNED A DECREE, THAT EVERY MAN THAT SHALL ASK A PETITION OF ANY GOD OR MAN WITHIN THIRTY DAYS, SAVE OF THEE, O KING, SHALL BE CAST INTO THE DEN OF LIONS? THE KING ANSWERED AND SAID, THE THING IS TRUE, ACCORDING TO THE LAW OF THE MEDES AND PERSIANS, WHICH ALTERETH NOT.
[Daniel 6:13] THEN ANSWERED THEY AND SAID BEFORE THE KING, THAT DANIEL, WHICH IS OF THE CHILDREN OF THE CAPTIVITY OF JUDAH, REGARDETH NOT THEE, O KING, NOR THE DECREE THAT THOU HAST SIGNED, BUT MAKETH HIS PETITION THREE TIMES A DAY.
[Daniel 6:14] THEN THE KING, WHEN HE HEARD THESE WORDS, WAS SORE DISPLEASED WITH HIMSELF, AND SET HIS HEART ON DANIEL TO DELIVER HIM: AND HE LABOURED TILL THE GOING DOWN OF THE SUN TO DELIVER HIM.
[Daniel 6:15] THEN THESE MEN ASSEMBLED UNTO THE KING, AND SAID UNTO THE KING, KNOW, O KING, THAT THE LAW OF THE MEDES AND PERSIANS IS, THAT NO DECREE NOR STATUTE WHICH THE KINGESTABLISHETH MAY BE CHANGED.
<<ASSEMBLED>>: Aramaic "Hargishu" which can indeed mean "assembled" but also relates to the Hebrew root "ReGeSH" meaning emotion. The sheer malice of these people caused them to emotionally importune upon the king to carry out the unchangeable decree that he himself had promulgated without realizing its implications.
[Daniel 6:16] THEN THE KING COMMANDED, AND THEY BROUGHT DANIEL, AND CAST HIM INTO THE DEN OF LIONS. NOW THE KING SPAKE AND SAID UNTO DANIEL, THY GOD WHOM THOU SERVEST CONTINUALLY, HE WILL DELIVER THEE.
[Daniel 6:17] AND A STONE WAS BROUGHT, AND LAID UPON THE MOUTH OF THE DEN; AND THE KING SEALED IT WITH HIS OWN SIGNET, AND WITH THE SIGNET OF HIS LORDS; THAT THE PURPOSE MIGHT NOT BE CHANGED CONCERNING DANIEL.
The Commentators say that the King really believed that a miracle could be performed for Daniel and that the lions not harm him. To a degree it was no longer in his hands to do anything about the lions. Darius however was not certain that Divine Protection would extend to prevent human interference and he suspected that hostile elements among his own entourage might want to harm Daniel. That was the reason for closing the den with the stone and sealing it.
[Daniel 6:18] THEN THE KING WENT TO HIS PALACE, AND PASSED THE NIGHT FASTING: NEITHER WERE INSTRUMENTS OF MUSICK BROUGHT BEFORE HIM: AND HIS SLEEP WENT FROM HIM.
[Daniel 6:19] THEN THE KING AROSE VERY EARLY IN THE MORNING, AND WENT IN HASTE UNTO THE DEN OF LIONS.
[Daniel 6:20] AND WHEN HE CAME TO THE DEN, HE CRIED WITH A LAMENTABLE VOICE UNTO DANIEL: AND THE KING SPAKE AND SAID TO DANIEL, O DANIEL, SERVANT OF THE LIVING GOD, IS THY GOD, WHOM THOU SERVEST CONTINUALLY, ABLE TO DELIVER THEE FROM THE LIONS?
[Daniel 6:21] THEN SAID DANIEL UNTO THE KING, O KING, LIVE FOR EVER.
[Daniel 6:22] 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 6:23] THEN WAS THE KING EXCEEDINGLY GLAD FOR HIM, AND COMMANDED THAT THEY SHOULD TAKE DANIEL UP OUT OF THE DEN. SO DANIEL WAS TAKEN UP OUT OF THE DEN, AND NO MANNER OF HURT WAS FOUND UPON HIM, BECAUSE HE BELIEVED IN HIS GOD.
Daniel believed in God and God saved him from the Lions Den.
[Daniel 6:24] AND THE KING COMMANDED, AND THEY BROUGHT THOSE MEN WHICH HAD ACCUSED DANIEL, AND THEY CAST THEM INTO THE DEN OF LIONS, THEM, THEIR CHILDREN, AND THEIR WIVES; AND THE LIONS HAD THE MASTERY OF THEM, AND BRAKE ALL THEIR BONES IN PIECES OR EVER THEY CAME AT THE BOTTOM OF THE DEN.
[Daniel 6:25] THEN KING DARIUS WROTE UNTO ALL PEOPLE, NATIONS, AND LANGUAGES, THAT DWELL IN ALL THE EARTH; PEACE BE MULTIPLIED UNTO YOU.
[Daniel 6:26] I MAKE A DECREE, THAT IN EVERY DOMINION OF MY KINGDOM MEN TREMBLE AND FEAR BEFORE THE GOD OF DANIEL: FOR HE IS THE LIVING GOD, AND STEDFAST FOR EVER, AND HIS KINGDOM THAT WHICH SHALL NOT BE DESTROYED, AND HIS DOMINION SHALL BE EVEN UNTO THE END.
[Daniel 6:27] HE DELIVERETH AND RESCUETH, AND HE WORKETH SIGNS AND WONDERS IN HEAVEN AND IN EARTH, WHO HATH DELIVERED DANIEL FROM THE POWER OF THE LIONS.
[Daniel 6:28] SO THIS DANIEL PROSPERED IN THE REIGN OF DARIUS, AND IN THE REIGN OF CYRUS THE PERSIAN.
Cyrus the Persian succeeded Darius the Mede as ruler over the Empire. Cyrus was destined to allow the Jews to return to Judah and begin rebuilding the Temple.