Prayer is Our Lifeline
Today, we will look at the life of Daniel to see prayer in action as our lifeline.
Some Scriptures to Consider First:
James 4:2 — You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.
1 John 5:15 – And if we know that He hears us – whatever we ask – we know that we have what we asked of him.
Let’s see how Daniel 6 shows us prayer as a lifeline in action
Daniel Is Chosen
King Darius has taken over the land of Babylon and has decided to set up 120 satraps with 3 administrators to rule over them. Daniel is one of the 3 men he is choosing. Why? Because Daniel had distinguished himself among the administrators and the satraps by his exceptional qualities. (Daniel 6:1-4).
Other Leaders Are Not Happy
In Fact They Falsely Represent Daniel
This greatly distresses the other leaders. They do not want King Darius to give Daniel such a position. So they look for ways that they can falsely represent Daniel to the king. They are unable to do so. So, they decide to trap him by what he does. (Daniel 6:5 – “Finally these men said, “We will never find any basis for charges against this man Daniel unless it has something to do with the law of his God.”).
A Trap For Daniel
They asked King Darius to sign a decree which states, “for the next 30 days you can only pray to the king and no one else.” They knew, Daniel would not be able to keep this rule. So they suggested a very cruel penalty. One meant to get rid of Daniel period. The penalty for breaking this rule was to be thrown into a den of lions (Daniel 6:6-7).
Their Proposal Sounds Good to King Darius
Their proposal sounded good so he decided to establish it (Daniel 6:8-9.)
10 Now when Daniel learned that the decree had been published, he went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before.
Daniel Breaks The Rule
These men, knowing that Daniel would not shift his allegiance from God to a man stationed themselves outside of his window ready to capture him. (Verses 11- 12). They could not wait to remind the king of his new decree. “For the next thirty days anyone who prays to any god or human being except to you, Your Majesty, would be thrown into the lions’ den?”
[What about them – what if they were found praying to their gods instead of the King for the next 30 days? – Of course, this would not have happened since they would not have been checking up on each other it was Daniel they wanted to get rid of.]
Too Late King Darius
Daniel is caught and brought before King Darius. King Darius is greatly troubled about the decree that he made because he knows that it is irrevocable and he really likes Daniel. (Verse 12.)
In fact he liked Daniel so much that he tried all he could until sunset that day to change the ruling (verses 13 – 16a).
The Lion’s Den
Just as Daniel is being thrown into the lion’s den, King Darius makes and interesting statement: verse 16b – “May your God, whom you serve continually, rescue you!”
A Troubled King Darius
After trying everything humanly possible – King Darius goes home and fasts and has a restless night hoping that Daniel will survive. (Verses 17-18)
Darius Is Hopeful That Daniel Is Still Alive
19 At the first light of dawn, the king got up and hurried to the lions’ den. 20 When he came near the den, he called to Daniel in an anguished voice, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to rescue you from the lions?”
King Darius ran to the lion’s den in great expectation that Daniel’s God had been able to save him and he wasn’t disappointed.
Daniel Is Alive
Verse 22 – My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, Your Majesty.”
WOW! What an impact Daniel’s life had made on King Darius.
Verse 23 is very powerful — The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God.
Goodbye To The Jealous Leaders
As we read, we see that the men that wanted Daniel dead were thrown into the lion’s den and were eaten as they fell to the ground (verse 24).
The End Result
In verse 25-28 we see the end result of this whole situation – 25 Then King Darius wrote to all the nations and peoples of every language in all the earth: “May you prosper greatly!” 26 “I issue a decree that in every part of my kingdom people must fear and reverence the God of Daniel. “For he is the living God and he endures forever; his kingdom will not be destroyed, his dominion will never end. 27 He rescues and he saves, he performs signs and wonders in the heavens and on the earth. He has rescued Daniel from the power of the lions.” 28 So Daniel prospered during the reign of Darius and the reign of Cyrus the Persian.
Thank You, God that You really do want to hear from us, and that You really want to bless us. At times, You even want to bless us, like You did for Daniel, above what we can even think, dream, or imagine (Ephesians 3:20).
Abba, help us to take Your Word seriously. Help us to ask, seek and knock. Help us to be thankful in our asking to the point that even when the answer is no we trust that it is because You have something better in store for us. Abba as always, we each have silent requests that we have been handing over to You so You can take care of them – please bless us to truly hand them over, and bless us with the patience to wait for Your answer and bless us with the willing hearts to receive Your answer. It’s not the easy life to submit our will for Your will but we know that with You all things are possible (Matthew 19:26) In Jesus name, amen.