When Your Faith is Under Fire – Part I – Plotted Against
“6 So these administrators and satraps went as a group to the king and said: “May King Darius live forever! 7 The royal administrators, prefects, satraps, advisers and governors have all agreed that the king should issue an edict and enforce the decree that anyone who prays to any god or human being during the next thirty days, except to you, Your Majesty, shall be thrown into the lions’ den. 8 Now, Your Majesty, issue the decree and put it in writing so that it cannot be altered—in accordance with the law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be repealed.” 9 So King Darius put the decree in writing.” Daniel 6:6-9 NIV
I looked up some crazy laws that the government reportedly passed in the United States. Of course these are all substantiated laws because they are on the internet and we know that if it is on the internet, it must be true (OK, if you didn’t catch it, I say that with sarcasm). In any case, these were some reportedly unusual laws.
In Utah: Marriage between cousins is against the law only if they are younger than 65.
In North Carolina: It is against the law to sing off-key.
In Alabama: Bear wrestling matches are prohibited.
In Carrizozo, New Mexico: It is forbidden for a female to appear unshaven in public.
In Indiana: It is illegal to attend a public event or use public transportation within four hours of eating an onion or garlic.
In Hawaii: Coins are not allowed to be placed in ones’ ears.
In this devotion, we see some people in the government who didn’t like Daniel’s influence and as a result, several of them got together to plot against Daniel and find a way to get Daniel out of office. They started by trying to find some scandal to diminish his character, but were unable to do so.
Because they were unable to find something to tarnish Daniel’s character, they got together to persuade King Darius to put out an edict on a crazy new law.
This edict stated “anyone who prays to any god or human being during the next thirty days, except to you, Your Majesty, shall be thrown into the lions’ den.” Somehow, King Darius agreed and put this crazy new law in writing as a decree and we see the beginnings of what will be Daniel’s story.
We will see what happens when Daniel’s faith is under fire. In the course of this chapter, Daniel is…
1 – Plotted against.
2 – Praying boldly.
3 – Persevering bravely.
4 – Persecuted harshly
5 – Protected miraculously.
6 – Prospered greatly
In today’s passage as he is plotted against, we see that Darius’ rule was not as strong as Nebuchadnezzar. Nebuchadnezzar had total and absolute authority to make any decision he chose. Darius was bound by decrees that were made. Unlike Nebuchadnezzar, once decrees were made, Darius didn’t have the power to change the laws. He was controlled by the decrees. When Darius passed this law, he was going to find himself regretting it. He shows us two lessons to consider that can help us to make better decisions as followers of Jesus Christ.
1 – Avoid bad influencers in life.
It is interesting that King Darius recognized Daniel’s integrity and as a result, placed him in such a high position of influence, yet, when it came to making an important leadership decision, he DID NOT consult with Daniel. Instead he allowed bad company to speak bad advice to him. He didn’t avoid the bad influences around him and it led to him making bad decisions.
Who are the influencers in your life? Are there any people that influence your decision making that should NOT be a part of making decisions in your life?
2 – Avoid isolation in life.
King Darius had the loyalty and integrity of Daniel to consult with, but he chose not to. When the enemy wants to lead us to make poor decisions, he isolates us from those to whom we are accountable and can help us to make better decisions.
Avoid bad influencers in life and avoid isolation in life. Lastly, seek out and embrace accountability.
3 – Embrace accountability.
Who in your life do you need to pursue a connection with? Daniel was available to the Darius, but Darius needed to reach out to him. Is there a Daniel in your life that you need to seek out? Who do you need to reach out too?
In the next devotion, we are going to see some powerful lessons from Daniel about how to be a believer in the face of persecution.
Holy Spirit help me to make better decisions. I want to avoid the trap of Darius and embrace the Daniel’s you have placed in my life. In the name of Jesus Christ I pray, amen.
Ty Tamasaka is an author who hold a Master of Arts Degree from Pacific Rim Christian University in Christian Ministry He is a Bible teacher who loves to encourage people to enjoy Jesus’ grace and extend His Kingdom. Ty just released his new book More than a Conqueror: 5 Pathways to Personal Revival.