“He Chose The Lions’ Den”

Posted: June 29, 2012 in Abolish Judges?, Christian Life, Daniel, Decision Making, Government, Salvation

 Who in his right mind would choose rather to be thrown into a lions’ den than skip prayer meeting for a month?  Daniel did.  But you might ask, Why?  It was a matter of priorities and confidence in His God.  Since his early years he had trusted in the God of the Jews and knew many things about Him.  He was/is all powerful, omniscient, righteous, good, truthful, holy, and loving.  His attributes don’t change (Hebrews 13:8) but His activities do.  Who wouldn’t want a God like this?  Most people wouldn’t.  They don’t want a God like this because they wouldn’t be able to manipulate Him like a Genie or their puppy.  What about you?  How would you describe your God?

  New Regime.  After the Medo-Persians brought down the Babylonian Empire it was discovered that Daniel (who was then in his 80s) had been a faithful administrator for many years.  King Darius needed such men with integrity to help him govern the new, enlarged kingdom.  So he appointed Daniel (a Jewish captive –Daniel 6:1-13) and two other men (probably Persians-Iranians) as governors to rule over 120 other lesser officials to see that no graft was taking place.  Because Daniel distinguished himself above the other two governors, King Darius wanted to set him over the whole realm.  Imagine what might happen if such a thing were to happen in Iran today.

  Conspiracy.  Rather than going on a “fact finding” mission, the two other governors went on a “fault finding” mission to see what they could dig up on Daniel.  But they found him to be faithful and loyal to the king,  honest in his work ethic, and one who maintained high moral standards.  (If you have been persecuted for doing your job like this, read 1 Peter 4:12-19.)  So these wicked men decided that if they were to find fault with him it would have to be related to his personal faith in Jehovah God. 

  Dirty Tricks.  Using flattery and lies, these officials manipulated King Darius into signing a royal statute and firm decree that would get Daniel thrown into the lions’ den.  Not realizing that his trusted friend Daniel wasn’t in on this plan, the king succumbed to their flattery and signed the document that couldn’t be changed by anyone including the king himself.  (We get the term “the law of the Medes and Persians” from Daniel 6:8).  Being placed in a position of a god was quite an honor for the king.  After all, forbidding others to make requests to their favorite gods for 30 days might help to unify the newly enlarged empire.

  Trapped.  But in signing the decree, the king put the death sentence on Daniel.  But he chose to face the lions rather than avoid his daily prayer time with God.  What would you have done?  He could have made excuses for not praying three times a day.  After all, a month wasn’t that long.  He could have closed his window as he prayed or prayed silently without bending his knees.  But that would have been cowardly of him.

  Habits.  We all have habits – good ones and bad ones.  When we get saved we don’t get rid of all of them or our sin nature (2 Corinthians 5:17; 1 John 1:8).  Since early in life Daniel spent much time with God in prayer (Daniel 2:17, 18).  He had confidence in God’s ability to deliver him from the lions just as God had delivered his three friends from the fiery furnace earlier in life (Daniel 3:27; Ephesians 3:20; Revelation 1:8).  How much confidence do you have in your God?  (By the way, not all believers received such deliverance. – Hebrews 11:35-38)

  Ignorant.  These vicious men who tricked the king and trapped Daniel didn’t know how powerful Daniel’s God was.  But they were about to find out very soon.  Likewise, someday everyone will face the One whom God the Father has appointed as the Judge – the Lord Jesus Christ (John 5:22; 2 Timothy 4:8).  “…it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27).  You can’t escape judgment day.  Every person who dies will be raised from the dead in his own order (1 Corinthians 15:22-24).  Your degree of pleasure in heaven or your degree of suffering in the lake of fire will be determined by Him (1 Corinthians 3:11-15; Revelation 20:11-15; 21:8).  In which group will you be found?  Are you sure?

  Deliverance.  God the Father loved the world (i.e. the people like you and me who were/are caught up in the devil’s system) that He gave His only begotten Son [the God-man], that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life…He who believes on Him is not condemned, but he who does not believe is condemned already…” (John 3:16, 18). 

  Gospel.  The Good News is that Christ died for our sins…and rose again bodily from the grave on the third day.  He can/will save any and all who trust in Him exclusively for salvation.  We aren’t saved by good works lest anyone should boast (Ephesians 2:8, 9).

  Curtain.  Someday the curtain will come down and we’ll all die unless the Lord comes back for us first (John 14:1-3; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18).  Are you ready to meet God?  Don’t assume that you’ll be alive tomorrow (James 4:14).  Make the most important decision of your life while you can.

  Assurance.  If you would like to have assurance of your salvation, call us at 805-238-3549 or visit our web site designed for people just like you:  www.kelseypeach.com.  These articles usually correspond to our talks on Sundays.

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