I am really excited about learning these attributes of great examples in the Word of God and how we can apply them to our lives. I am praying that we are going to experience God as never before and touch people with impact as never before.
The man we are going to look at today is Daniel. I love his pure devotion to God. His devotion was so outstanding that he also caused the same kind of devotion in the three people he influenced the most.
Let’s start by noting this: Daniel’s name means, “God is my judge.”
Think about the reason that this would be important. He was so solidified in the truth of this that he knew that if God was the Judge and he was right before Him, no one else’s judgement against him would matter. If you are settled in this, no matter the hardship you face, you know it can’t adversely affect you. Praise the Lord!
Daniel was a Jew and was a part of his people being torn from Jerusalem and exiled to Babylon. But right away, he was set apart. Nebuchadnezzar the king called for the finest in the land.
Daniel 1:4 NKJV
Young men in whom there was no blemish, but good-looking, gifted in all wisdom, possessing knowledge and quick to understand, who had ability to serve in the king's palace, and whom they might teach the language and literature of the Chaldeans.
Daniel, along with three of his friends, was chosen. Nebuchadnezzar gave them Babylonian names. Daniel was called Belshazzar and it meant, “protect the king.” Little did Nebuchadnezzar know that Daniel would protect the king in many ways he would never imagine.
Daniel and his friends were placed under the instruction of the teachers of Babylon, and the four young men were presented to King Nebuchadnezzar for his review. The King found them ten times better than all the magicians and advisors in his whole kingdom. Daniel’s love and loyalty to God was evident and influential. He knelt and prayed three times a day to God and kept his relationship with God intact and of utmost importance in his life. Daniel soon rose to power.
Daniel 6:3 NKJV
Then this Daniel distinguished himself above the governors and satraps, because an excellent spirit was in him; and the king gave thought to setting him over the whole realm.
Daniel was ALL OUT for God and it showed up in the spirit! An excellent spirit was in him! Satan did not like that at all. He knew that Daniel’s God was powerful and so he incited the other rulers in Babylon to plot his destruction. These men went to the king with a plan that would feed the ego of the king.
Daniel 6:7-10 NKJV
7 “All the governors of the kingdom, the administrators and satraps, the counselors and advisors, have consulted together to establish a royal statute and to make a firm decree, that whoever petitions any god or man for thirty days, except you, O king, shall be cast into the den of lions.
8 Now, O king, establish the decree and sign the writing, so that it cannot be changed, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which does not alter."
9 Therefore King Darius signed the written decree. Daniel was well aware of the decree and that the king could not even change it once it was put into law, but without regard to the consequences, Daniel prayed at his window. Facing prosperity or the threat of execution, he would not let his heart be drawn away from the God whom he loved and served.
10 Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days.
Daniel obviously wasn’t secretive about it. He wasn’t quieted. He was ALL OUT when it was okay for him to be ALL OUT, and he was ALL OUT when it wasn’t appropriate and he was ALL OUT when it might even be deadly to do so.
Daniel 6:11-13 NKJV
11 Then these men assembled and found Daniel praying and making supplication before his God.
This is what they wanted
12 And they went before the king, and spoke concerning the king's decree: "Have you not signed a decree that every man who petitions any god or man within thirty days, except you, 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 does not alter."
13 So they answered and said before the king, "That Daniel, who is one of the captives from Judah, does not show due regard for you, O king, or for the decree that you have signed, but makes his petition three times a day."
The devil thought he won. But when God’s hand is upon you and when you are loyal and devoted to God, you will find His devotion to you is so much greater and more powerful than anything the devil tries.
Daniel 6:14-16 NKJV
14 And the king, when he heard these words, was greatly displeased with himself, and set his heart on Daniel to deliver him; and he labored till the going down of the sun to deliver him. The king was believing in the power of Daniels God to deliver him because he had become powerless to his own decree.
15 Then these men approached the king, and said to the king, "Know, O king, that it is the law of the Medes and Persians that no decree or statute which the king establishes may be changed." Daniel had also won the king over with his devotion to his God to the point the King began counting on that devotion himself. Look at this:
16 So the king gave the command, and they brought Daniel and cast him into the den of lions. But the king spoke, saying to Daniel, "Your God, whom you serve continually, He will deliver you."
Daniel was not just thrown into a lion’s den for the night. He was thrown into a hungry lion’s den. The situation did not look too good in the natural.
Take a look at how much his given name to “save the king” would come into play here. (Note, Daniel had already interpreted dreams that had saved the kingdom and he was now under Nebuchadnezzar’s son’s reign, Darius.)
Daniel 6:18 NKJV
Now the king went to his palace and spent the night fasting; and no musicians were brought before him. Also his sleep went from him.
Here we find the king fasting on behalf of Daniel. He was going ALL OUT for Daniel and he wasn’t even Jewish. Do you understand how much the way you live your life before others matters? Daniel had saved the kingdom. He was given wisdom to preserve a kingdom that wasn’t even his, but he served with excellence and still kept his obvious devotion to the Lord. He had now become an influence FOR GOD that no one else could stop.
Daniel 6:19-20 NKJV
19 Then the king arose very early in the morning and went in haste to the den of lions.
20 And when he came to the den, he cried out with a lamenting voice to Daniel. The king spoke, saying to Daniel, "Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to deliver you from the lions?"
Please note that the king called him, “Daniel, servant of the living God.” I am literally laughing as I write this! An ungodly king is acknowledging Daniel’s God as the ultimate Judge who could stay the hand of a ridiculous decree by man. Hallelujah!
Daniel 6:21-22 NKJV
21 Then Daniel said to the king, "O king, live forever!
22 My God sent His angel and shut the lions' mouths, so that they have not hurt me, because I was found innocent before Him; and also, O king, I have done no wrong before you."
Daniel was judged by God as INNOCENT. And the just Judge saved him in the face of the enemy. No weapon formed against him could prosper! Daniel cared about his innocence before God and before his natural king as well. His character and his devotion to God spilled over to the one set in authority over him. Oh what we can learn from his example! The end result of his continued devotion was that a non-Jewish man was compelled to spread the good news at the time.
Daniel 6:25-27 NKJV
25 Then King Darius wrote: To all peoples, nations, and languages that dwell in all the earth: Peace be multiplied to you.
26 I make a decree that in every dominion of my kingdom men must tremble and fear before the God of Daniel. For He is the living God, and steadfast forever; His kingdom is the one which shall not be destroyed, and His dominion shall endure to the end.
27 He delivers and rescues, and He works signs and wonders in Heaven and on earth, Who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.
Think of a people group, the Bride of Christ, coming into this same kind of devotion to God. It wouldn’t matter what the natural consequences would be if they were so obviously ALL OUT to their God that they operated above man’s systems. Their supernatural powers would be such a threat to the enemy that he would rise up to destroy them, but that wouldn’t even slow them down for one minute in how they served their God.
They would be open and honest about it. They would be secure in their God, and the truth that He is the only One who could ultimately judge them as innocent and save them from the tactics of the enemy.
That is us. We are ALL OUT people. We are willing to continue praying, calling out to God, doing what is right before God and man, and being perfectly willing to face any consequence because God is on our side.
I hope this has stirred you up!
I prophesy over you today:
You are rising up in faith right now. You are joining hearts with seamless oneness to other devoted believers who will obviously be ALL OUT, seriously devoted to the one and only God. There is trust arising as never before. There is a knowing that no matter what the circumstances are that you face, you are not alone, and God will bring peace in every situation formed against you, to bring even more glory to His name. You are entering into a new level where the plots of the enemy will not affect you as you operate in an excellent spirit before God.
Amen, so be it.
Surrounded (Fight My Battles) - Upper Room
Not Today – Hillsong
You Never Let Go - Bryan and Katie Torwalt
What was your “ah-ha” moment?
How can you apply this in your relationship with God, and what changes will you have to make?
How can this help you with your family?
How can this help you with others in your daily life?
Think BIG: By applying these truths, how are you expecting this to impact your family, others I your everyday life, your city, and the world?