TEACHER: Ken Hicks
SCRIPTURES: Daniel 6:1-28
BOTTOM LINE: Preparation Creates Separation: Danuel got in TROUBLE because of his Faith … and he was DELIVERED because of his Faith!
QUESTION: What Does it Mean to Experience The Blessing and Burden of an Utterly Predictable Life?
A Credible Authentic Leader is someone who can be trusted, because he is what he presses to be. He’s the real deal … what you see is what you get. Daniel was a Credible Authentic Leader.
Here’s a crazy thought … You can tell a lot about a person by the quality of his enemies … and Daniel must have been a good man, because he had the right kind of enemies! The people who hated him … were completely in opposition to his God … and they attacked Daniel’s Faith because they couldn’t find any fault in him anywhere else … and they had no answer for what Daniel believed.
And so as you’re turning to Daniel 6 , we’ve got to remember a couple things here:
- Daniel is no an Old Man – he came to Babylon as a teen-ager, and all his adult life has been spent serving in the courts of various pagan rulers. Now, he’s in his late 80’s … if not 90 by this point.
- He is now serving under a New King [King Darius] who was ruling over the new Kingdom in the Medo-Persian Empire.
And what’s crazy is there’s a new name for the King … but the same Spiritual Challenge. Now we get to see, Will He Remain Faithful to God once again?
- The King’s Decree
Daniel once again is about to be promoted to a High Office. Evidently Darius recognized him as a man of integrity and wanted to make him 2nd in command over the Entire Kingdom, and that’s where the intrigue begins.
This is what his enemies discovered when they examined his life:
- He was FAITHFUL in his Duties.
- He was FAULTLESS in his Character.
- He was FERVANT in his Prayers.
The Satraps said we’ll never catch Daniel doing something wrong unless it’s in the area of his Faith. What if they were investigating us in the same way? What if they hired some Private Investigators to look into every aspect of our life? Our Public Life? Our Private Life? Our Past? Our Present … what would they uncover?
- Daniel’s Devotion
So what do we do when we discover that our enemies have passed a Law aimed at One Person, and we’re that Person? It’s like walking around w/ a Bull’s Eye on our shirt. How we respond in that moment will tell us a great deal about our character.
When we’re facing a HUGE challenge, we don’t rise the level of the Challenge in that moment. We Fall to the Level of our Training!
- The Lord’s Deliverance
That night, the King didn’t sleep well … but Daniel slept like a baby! The King tossed and turned; paced the floor; refused all offers of entertainment; and even refused to eat!
Early in the morning, he rushed to the Lion’s Den, hoping against hope that Daniel had somehow survived.
Nothing crazy fancy here. For over 80 years, Daniel’s faith had rested in the God of Israel! That wasn’t about to change at this point! Daniel simply kept trusting in God … and as a result … the Lions couldn’t touch him.
3 Lessons for Modern-Day Daniel’s
- It is Possible to Live a Pure Life in the Midst of a Thoroughly Pagan World.
- God Can Use us to Touch Un-Likely People When We Are Faithful to Him.
- God Is Able to Deliver His People From Any Danger They Face.
And so to Christ-Followers, be of Good Cheer. Do not fear your enemies and do not fear what they can do to you!
Remember this story, and we pray for this kind of Utterly Predictable Faith in our life!
… SOMEONE is Watching Us!
… and … SOMEONE is Watching Over Us!
When we are climbing the mountain of struggle in 1 way or another as a result of our Life In-Christ, remember this truth!
Those who serve the Lord NEVER have an easy road in this world … and we’re in good company … look at Daniel!
In him, we see both Blessing and the Burden of an Utterly Predictable Faith.
He got in TROUBLE because of his Faith … and he was DELIVERED because of his Faith!