Higher Authority – Daniel 6:16

“Then the king commanded, and Daniel was brought and cast into the den of lions.
The king declared to Daniel, ‘May your God, whom you serve continually, deliver you!’”

Daniel 6:16

It strikes me how remarkable this statement is. Darius was the king of a mighty empire. He had issued a decree that for 30 days, his subjects were to only offer petitions to him—not to any other god or man. Upon realizing that Daniel had continued praying to his God, and therefore was to be cast into the lion’s den, Darius “was much distressed and set his mind to deliver Daniel. And he labored till the sun went down to rescue him” (Daniel 6:14). This great king endeavored to deliver Daniel from the sentence his decree had set. To no avail. He was unable to deliver.

It is in the king’s resignation that we find this statement, the significance of which could easily escape us: “May your God, whom you serve continually, deliver you!” King Darius is acknowledging his own inability to save and God’s unquestionable power and authority to deliver Daniel. To do what the king could not.

Darius was unable to sleep that night. He couldn’t eat or suffer any distraction. The next morning we see that he was still hoping against hope that Daniel’s God had seen fit to save him. “Then, at the break of day, the king arose and went in haste to the den of lions. As he came near to the den where Daniel was, he cried out in a tone of anguish. The king declared to Daniel, ‘O Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to deliver you from the lions?’ Then Daniel said to the king, ‘O king, live forever! My God sent his angel and shut the lion’s mouths, and they have not harmed me, because I was found blameless before him, and also before you, O king, I have done no harm’” (Daniel 6:19-22).

That which was impossible even for the man who was likely more powerful than any other at that time, the God whom Daniel served was able to accomplish. Easily. This is the power of our God. This is the extent of His reign. It covers everything. No one can stand against Him. And for those of us who are His, those He has bought with a price and now holds in His hand, nothing will ever separate us from His love and salvation.

One day, all will see Him as He is. In all glory, might, and sovereignty.

“For he is the living God,
enduring forever;
his kingdom shall never be destroyed,
and his dominion shall be to the end.
He delivers and rescues;
he works signs and wonders
in heaven and on earth,
he who has saved Daniel
from the power of the lions.”
Daniel 6:26-27

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