Tabernacle Tuesday
~ Week Six ~
July 14, 2020
Daniel ~ Chapter Six
"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.
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."
(Daniel 6:26b, 27)

Morning Meditation : Read Daniel 6:1-17

Nebuchadnezzar had learned the hard way that "the Most High God rules in the kingdom of men, and appoints over it whomever He chooses" (Daniel 5:21b) , but his foolish and irresponsible grandson, Belshazzar, refused to learn from his grandfather's mistakes, and it cost him dearly; not only his own life, but also the downfall of an entire empire. The danger couldn't be more evident as the enemy lay waiting at the gate of the city ready to attack; however, instead of showing concern and doing all that he could to protect his people, Belshazzar was under the influence of a false sense of security. Trusting in the city's fortified walls and gates and an abundant supply of food, the reckless king called for a time of feasting rather than proclaiming a time of fasting. The handwriting was on the wall long before the Lord laid a divine finger on the palace plaster, but Belshazzar proved he was unable to decipher any of the warnings given to him, regardless if they were from the past or from the present. He was determined to live in deliberate defiance of the true, living God "who holds your breath in his hand and owns all your ways" (Daniel 5:23b); and so, the Lord's faithful interpreter, Daniel, a man of the Word of God and prayer, was called to court to bring the charges the Lord had brought against the king.

That very night Belshazzar breathed his last breath, Babylon fell to the Persian army, and Darius the Mede received the kingdom. When Darius began to reorganize the government of Babylon he appointed Daniel as one of the three key administrators over the kingdom, so that he would suffer no loss of revenue. Daniel soon proved to be such a far superior worker that Darius thought to make him his right hand man. "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 6:3). Daniel was not only advanced in years, but also in ability. This caused conflict with the other officers whose envy would lead to the concocting of a plan to bring about his ruin. His enemies spied on him, but could find no error or fault in him. He was diligent and devout, conscientious and consistent, in character and conduct. "Then these men said, "We shall not find any charge against this Daniel unless we find it against him concerning the law of his God" (v. 5). The only way they could cast him down was to contrive a new law in which to ensnare him. They devised a plan which would trap him in his religious activity, because they knew that Daniel would never break the law of his God in order to obey the law of the land. And they deceived the king in order to convince him to establish the decree and sign it into law.

"Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed,
he went home. And in his upper room,
with his windows opened 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 5:10)

Daniel lived such a disciplined lifestyle of prayer that even his enemies knew he prayed in his home three times each day with his windows opened toward Jerusalem. For years Daniel "set his face toward the Lord God to make request by prayer and supplication" (Daniel 9:3); and God had been faithful to hear his prayers and answer them. Daniel was over 80 years old now; the Lord had never failed him, so Daniel had no reason to fail in his duty in prayer. Undeterred by the king's decree, which now made praying to the Lord God a capital crime, Daniel opened his windows and set his face toward Jerusalem, and prayed as he usually did. "Evening and morning and at noon I will pray, and cry aloud, and He shall hear my voice" (Psalm 55:17). He was a man of great faith and courage, who stood his ground, refusing to compromise, and choosing "to obey God rather than men" (Acts 5:29). His enemies were correct in their assumptions about Daniel; as soon as they found him "praying and making supplication before his God," they went before the king to accuse him. The king, however, did not share their contempt for Daniel; instead "he was greatly displeased with himself," that he had acted so hastily in signing the law, and was now determined to deliver Daniel from death. Darius became Daniel's advocate, but to no avail, for his accusers demanded judgment. "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" (v. 16). Daniel began and ended each day with his eyes fixed upon the Lord, seeking His guidance and help, and trusting every opportunity and outcome to the Lord. He could have just as easily closed his windows and prayed silently for the 30 days, but to do so would have been cowardly. Rather than make excuses, Daniel chose to trust the Lord for His divine purposes to be accomplished - whether by life or by death. Daniel was cast into the den of lions for worshiping his God, and a stone was laid over it and sealed (like the stone that sealed the tomb of our crucified Lord) - so that no one could intervene or interrupt the great miracle that Heaven would perform. "But the salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; He is their strength in the time of trouble. and the LORD shall help them and deliver them; He shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in Him" (Psalm 37:39-40). Daniel had within him an "excellent spirit" which caught the attention of multiple kings who placed him in positions of authority in their kingdoms. The secret of his power with men and with God was his prayerfulness. Daniel was a man of prayer who, despite his important position, made it his priority duty to transact business with the Lord in prayer three times every day. In order to accomplish his work in the idolatrous world of his exile, Daniel depended upon the strength and wisdom of God. Daniel stood stronger because he spent countless hours on his knees in prayer, with thanksgiving; and like his friends who refused to bow the knee in worship of Nebuchadnezzar's golden image, Daniel would not bend to a law that made a treasonous act of petitioning the comfort and mercy of God. How privileged we are to enjoy the freedom of our religious liberty where we are not subject to such cruel laws that prohibit our prayers, our worship, our gatherings, our singing...hmmm...so if our public prayers were to be postponed for a month, or two, or four, or six...hmmm...okay, but what about our private prayer? What if there were spies and informers watching our every activity like they did in Daniel's day? Would we give it up? Or do we already neglect the privilege we have been given? Do we value prayer as we ought? What if Daniel's difficulty were ours today? The king told him he must not pray, but Daniel did not stage a protest on the corner of the city square. No! He went to his house of prayer where he was accustomed to pray and "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." Let us pray today to have the heart of Daniel and commit to cultivating a life of prayer that will not cease or compromise when the enemy comes with his wicked scheming to silence the servants of God from seeking the help and blessing of the Lord, but will remain steadfast in prayer with gratitude until the Lord shuts the mouths of the lions!

"But you, when you pray,
go into your room,
and when you have shut the door,
pray to your Father who is in the secret place;
and your Father who sees in secret
will reward you openly."
(Matthew 6:6)
Afternoon Devotion : Read Daniel 6:18-28

Darius spent a restless night in the palace, while Daniel was at rest in the den of lions, with the angel of the Lord to keep him company through that glorious and miraculous night. The king was distressed by his own pride which led to his signing the death warrant of his friend - the most favored and trusted administrator in his realm; but Daniel was at perfect peace because he had remained faithful and honored the Lord. "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" (v. 18). The king was in turmoil, and could not sleep, because he could not forgive himself for putting Daniel in danger. At the first sign of the morning, he went in haste to the lions' den and cried out to Daniel. "Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God whom you serve continually, been able to deliver you from the lions?" (v. 20b). Daniel responded by giving glory to God. He was alive and well, completely unharmed by the lions, who had laid down like lambs for the night; just as his three friends had come out of the fiery furnace, without their bonds, but also without the smell of smoke upon them. He was preserved and delivered. God had sent His angel to shut the mouths of the lion's and keep His servant safe. "The angel of the LORD encamps all around those who fear Him, and delivers them" (Psalm 34:7).

"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 5:22)

The king was overjoyed at the sound of Daniel's voice and commanded for him to be brought out of the den of lions, and in his place he cast the men who had accused Daniel. Those conniving counselors would never trouble him again - the ravenous lions, who missed their evening meal, saw to that. "...the lions overpowered them, and broke all their bones in pieces before they ever came to the bottom of the den" (v. 24b). Daniel was courageous - he had the heart of a lion - and so to the lion's den he must go to prove his heart was steadfastly fixed upon the trustworthiness of his God. The danger did not cause him to flinch in his resolve. He would not budge, not even an inch - his accusers would have to be the ones to move out of the way. Daniel had resolved from the beginning to not allow himself to be defiled in the idolatrous land of his captivity (1:8). He put his foot down, and remained firm and unfaltering for all the years of the Exile; he was an old man now, but still he would not waiver, serving his God continually . Daniel was secure in his faith in the one true, living God, and God saw to it that His faithful servant remained safe and secure. Daniel was promoted to positions of great authority, yet fame and popularity, riches and honor did not deter him from serving his God continually . When sunny days were darkened by days of peril, Daniel did what he had always done before - he prayed! In prosperity or in persecution, Daniel remained the same. He served the Lord continually ! May we be found, whether in perilous or in prosperous times, like Daniel - much in prayer - so that when duty calls or danger comes we will not retreat, but will remain close to our Lord Jesus - trusting, resting, waiting - bringing glory and honor to His name, as He works out His divine purposes in and through our lives in this world. "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. He delivers and rescues, and He works signs and wonders in heaven and on earth..." (v. 26b, 27a).

"Ah, Lord GOD!
Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth
by Your great power and outstretched arm.
There is nothing too hard for You."
(Jeremiah 32:17)
Evening Prayer : "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 a day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days." (Daniel 6:10)

Just click or tap the You Tube image below
or tap HERE.
As we travel through the Book of Daniel
we want to focus on following the example of his faith,
but as we do, let us prayerfully consider setting aside
Tuesdays as "fast" days,
as we feast upon the goodness and grace of our Lord this summer
(consider a full day fast, a partial fast, or a Daniel fast (1:12))

Scripture Meditations for the Week:

Wednesday: Psalm 34:1-10
Thursday: Psalm 55:16, 17
Friday: Hebrews 11:32-35
Saturday: Philippians 4:6, 7
Sunday: Psalm 95:1-7
Monday: 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Journal: _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Memory Verse for the Week:

"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.
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."
(Daniel 6:26b, 27)
Read about 2020 The Year of Divine Government HERE

A Proclamation of Prayer for the Pandemic
(with links to the YouTube ANOINTING prayers through the Psalms)
to provide peace and to encourage faith in times of crisis
when fear, doubt, and uncertainty try to rob us of our joy!
Click or Tap HERE

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"Why do you spend money for what is not bread,
and your wages for what does not satisfy?
Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good,
and let your soul delight itself in abundance.
Incline your ear, and come to Me, hear, and your soul shall live."
(Isaiah 55:2, 3a)
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Setting the world on fire for Christ ~ One heart at a time!
TESTIFY to the gospel of the grace of God
a 12-week devotional prayer and fasting journey through the Book of Daniel
copyright (c) 2020 Traci A. Alexander. All Rights Reserved.

Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations are from the Holy Bible, New King James Version, copyright (c) 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc., and the Holy Bible, New International Version, copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society.