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July 24, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God.”—Daniel 6:23 (NIV)
I love this Scripture—seeing the joyous reaction of the king toward Daniel’s safety and health. Some would say it was because Daniel could be safely restored to his place and could continue to be useful to Darius in his government, since Daniel was extremely valuable and serving in one of the highest positions in the empire. But I think there’s more at play here. I believe King Darius had an extremely deep level of admiration, respect, and affection toward Daniel, similar to Ashpenaz and Nebuchadnezzar.
I believe that Daniel’s character, convictions, and godliness (or Christlikeness) drew people to him and garnered him great respect amongst many people. I imagine Daniel as being loving, joyful, peaceable, patient, exceedingly kind, upright, faithful, gentle, and self-controlled.
And so, despite not being on the same page spiritually, people like Darius were drawn to him because, whether they realized it or not, they saw the Lord through their interactions with Daniel. It’s no wonder Darius was overjoyed at Daniel’s safety . . . not just because of his usefulness to the empire, but because of the way God was using him to move in the hearts and minds of the people he interacted with!
Now, moving forward with today’s verse, we read, “When Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God.” As I read this, my eyes are quite literally filled with tears because of what the Lord showed me . . .
Knowing how Daniel was raised up from the den of devouring, I can’t help but think of these three verses: 1) “But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5 NIV), 2) “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21 NKJV), and 3) “He was handed over to die because of our sins, and he was raised to life to make us right with God” (Romans 4:25 NLT).
Friends, Jesus Christ, the innocent, blameless, obedient Lamb of God, was sentenced to death, led to slaughter, wounded, buried in the den of the earth, and raised up, bearing the scars He received on our behalf so that all those who trust in God could be lifted out of the den of sin and death. “He has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation” (Colossians 1:22 NIV). In response, all I can say is “Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift” (2 Corinthians 9:15 NIV)!
DIG: Why was Darius so overjoyed at Daniel’s safety? What is it about Daniel that made him so valuable?
DISCOVER: What does the language in today’s point us to?
DO: Today, worship the Lord and thank Him for His indescribable gift through Christ Jesus! As a believer, you have been “buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life” (Romans 6:4 NIV). Rejoice in that this day!
If you have never experienced that newness of life, if you have never given your life to Jesus, the One who died for you and loves you with a perfect love, then today can be your day! If you want to receive Him and want to know how to do that, email me and I’d be thrilled to walk with you through it!
Danny Saavedra has served on the staff of Calvary since 2012, managing the Calvary Devotional and digital discipleship resources. He has a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary. His wife Stephanie, son Jude, and daughter Zoe share a love of Star Wars, good food, having friends over for dinner, and studying the Word together as a family.