Often we could be a blood hungry people. Someone does wrong, be it in politics or business and we want their head to roll. We have seen the Minister of Tourism, Lindiwe Sisulu’s comments on the South African Constitution. She was rebuked by the Deputy Chief Justice and many other critics only to find herself in a spat with the Justice Minister, Ronald Lamola. Many are saying the president’s mild, disguised rebuke is insufficient. Without me analyzing her actions (I am a pastor, not a politician), many want her head. They are literally blood hungry. This is the impression we get when we find Daniel in prayer with the satraps seeking his blood.
1) They sought Daniel out.
Da 6:11 Then these men went as a group and found Daniel praying and asking God for help.
To find where he was they must have used houses close by to climb onto their rooves to actually see Daniel in prayer. He was high up with the roof either on his side or behind him … and he was kneeling. What lengths they went too! But then, they were determined to “catch” him breaking the law so that they could have him killed in the Lions’ Den. They caught him in the “act”, the banned act of prayer to his Deity. You can picture their delight and joy. Mission almost accomplished. Daniel is almost out. The king won’t keep him in charge of all the satraps in the kingdom. But it was not yet party time.
2) They approached the king. Verse 12 shows us how deceitful they were … saying to the king … “did you not?”
Da 6:12 So they went to the king and spoke to him about his royal decree: “Did you not publish a decree that during the next thirty days anyone who prays to any god or man except to you, O king, would be thrown into the lions’ den?”
This was nothing less than a conspiracy. They wanted Daniel dead! My brother and sister, we live in a time where these things happen in the workplace, politics … even in the Church … and sadly so, even in the home amongst family members. They have no place in Christianity. We need to be people who trust in the Sovereignty of God. If people in the Church, workplace, politics or family are corrupt, deceitful or conspiring, He will take them out in His time. Look what He did with Judas Iscariot! He was an odd ball. He had his own agenda. He was the treasurer and he took money fraudulently out of the money bag … but God has His way and His time. This is still true today. This does not mean we can’t address wrongs and sins, we must. But there is a godly way to deal with matters. Too often Churches, families and even businesses have been adversely affected because someone wanted revenge out of jealousy.
3) The king was trapped. By now he must have smelt a rat, but he was caught.
Da 6:12 The king answered, “The decree stands—in accordance with the laws of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be repealed.”
As king he knew he was cornered even though he did not know what was coming. Once a law was written and sealed with his signature, it fell into the domain of the “laws of the Medes and Persians” and no one, not even the king who signed it into law could revoke the law. Their terrible conspiracy even had the king deceived.
4) Once trapped they reveal their reason for this law.
Da 6:13 Then they said to the king, “Daniel, who is one of the exiles from Judah, pays no attention to you, O king, or to the decree you put in writing. He still prays three times a day.”
Notice how evil these satraps are. They say Daniel is a rebel. They label Daniel “one of the Exiles from Judah” not as the one in charge of all the satraps throughout the kingdom. They don’t want to bring up his immaculate credentials, rather they want him to be seen as a foreigner with the insinuation that he is politically unfaithful. They say …
(1) Daniel ignores you O King and
(2) Daniel ignores the written law of the Medes and Persians.
5) The king realized how terribly his own appointees to government trapped him.
Da 6:14 When the king heard this, he was greatly distressed; he was determined to rescue Daniel and made every effort until sundown to save him.
Daniel was literally the king’s second in charge. He was the one who had his finger on the pulse of government. He was unequalled in the king’s service. King Darius by now knew that the whole plan was staged for one purpose … to rid the kingdom of Daniel … then no one would be looking over their shoulders making certain there was no corruption. This almost sounds like a modern day political drama played out. The king did his best to protect Daniel … but …
6) Now they show the king how much they trapped him
Da 6:15 Then the men went as a group to the king and said to him, “Remember, O king, that according to the law of the Medes and Persians no decree or edict that the king issues can be changed.”
The king could not get out of his own homemade mess. These satraps remind him that this law is unalterable. Picture their delight and happiness … we won … we won! How foolish are such corrupt, deceitful, self-serving politicians. They had devised and executed the perfect plan … but they forgot (or did not know) about the Sovereignty of God. The following two Scriptures show us that nothing is out of God’s control:
Pr 16:4 The LORD works out everything for his own ends—even the wicked for a day of disaster
Eph 1:11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, 12 in order that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory.
Christians know this and also know
Ro 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
Even when the enemy seemingly gets us into a situation where it seems as though our backs are against the wall … we know our God is at work. Daniel knew that too. Before pushing on, perhaps we need to stop and reflect upon a few matters.
(a) Make certain you know and follow the God of the Bible. I’m looking past salvation here. Do a regular stock take to ensure that all the Gospel boxes are ticked in your life.
(b) Make certain your whole life is shaped around pleasing and serving God. The heart of all activities in life … it’s the breath that holds all together is prayer. Be certain your prayer life is vibrant.
(c) Even if the enemy onslaught is huge, God is bigger and greater than all our opponents can come up with. Remember
Jos 23:14 You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the LORD your God gave you has failed.
This applies to all believers!
Father, thank You for being everything to me. Amen.