Daniel (Daniel 6:1-3) PART 2
Daniel 6:1-3, “It pleased Darius to set over the kingdom an hundred and twenty princes, which should be over the whole kingdom; 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. 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.”
Joe Lee told an early work experience that helped shape the future course of his life. He got a job in his teens on one of the largest cattle ranches in California. One day, he was instructed to drive cattle from one pasture to another. On the way, he saw that a fence had fallen and the cattle had gotten out. Rather than continuing, he stopped, rounded up those cattle, and spent the rest of the day fixing the fence.
Concerned that he would get in trouble for not finishing the job, he called his boss. When he told him what he had done, rather than getting reprimanded he was praised for taking initiative. “Act like you would if you owned the place,” his boss told him. That principle of integrity, taking diligent care of everything placed in his hand, made Joe Lee a great success in the business world, but most importantly as a Christian.
Daniel 6 opens with the head of gold being replaced by the silver kingdom, the breast and arms of Media-Persia. King Darius arose to power around 538 b.c. When Darius took over the Chaldean kingdom, he appointed 120 princes to oversee the affairs of the Chaldean province. Over these princes, Darius appointed three presidents of whom Daniel was first in authority. Daniel was the leading president of three presidents that oversaw 120 princes.
Daniel was the most outstanding of the three administrators who assisted Darius in ruling the empire. Because of Daniel’s exceptional qualities, including his extraordinary intelligence, the king planned to give him a new position above all the other leaders and administrators. Because of God’s goodness, Daniel’s mind was still sharp and his abilities still strong at 80 years of age (Exodus 7:7; Deuteronomy 34:7; Joshua 14:10-11; 24:29). This was a new king, but he already knew that something was different about Daniel. The king discerned an excellent spirit in Daniel. Daniel was preferred above all others because of his excellent spirit. His reputation as a man of wisdom was outstanding, and his character was impeccable. The king preferred Daniel because of his honesty and integrity. Standing for the Lord is not always easy, but Daniel displayed how to do it well. I Corinthians 10:31, “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.” Daniel's character could not be drowned by floods, burned by fire, corrupted by rust, stolen by thieves, or destroyed by moths.
Daniel was highly respected by the king but despised by the other leaders. They diligently sought for ways to get him removed. Daniel was accused of violating news laws in which they had created. This law was used to get Daniel in trouble based on his commitment to God. Daniel may have lost his position, but he did not lose his integrity. Today, there are laws formed by government that violate the laws of God. Very soon, there will be harsher laws put in place that will challenge the believer’s commitment to Christ. There will come a time when those who choose to obey the Lord will be threatened with death.
There may be times when we may face persecution, deprivation, prosecution, or execution. God, however, wants us to know that faithfulness to Him is always the right thing in spite of the difficulties. Faithfulness and obedience to Him yield rich rewards and blessings. We never have to be ashamed of our faith in the Lord though the world may try to intimidate us into silence.
Questions to Consider:
Do you have an excellent spirit?
Are you easy to work with?
Do you work hard and do your best at what you do?
Points to Ponder:
This was a great testimony for Daniel and a challenge to all of us to have the same kind of attitude.
As Christians representing the Lord, we should do our best to bring honor to Him.
God remembers, records, and rewards you for your faithful and devoted service to Him.
Prayer, Father in Heaven, I thank You for Jesus, Your Son. He is the perfect example of integrity and character. Teach me Your ways and guide my heart. My desire is to be more like Jesus in all my attitudes and actions in a manner that is pleasing to You. In Jesus name, Amen!
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship with Christ.