A Sleepless Night
A few days ago Mary caught a glimpse of something grayish-brown scurrying across our backyard between a group of cedars about thirty yards away. Larry, our cat, saw it as well. He went from a calm, lying down, relaxed position to a full sprint, and then a slow stalking, interspersed with quick lunges.
A few minutes later he proudly dropped his trophy kill by our back door. Larry is a lethal hunter, and he weighs only ten pounds. I shudder when I think about the lions I got to see in the Masai Mara in Kenya who could weigh from 265 to 420 pounds. Daniel didn’t have a chance against a pride of lions in a pit, but check out who had the sleepless night.
“When the king heard the charges against Daniel, he was greatly distressed. Determined to save him, he made every effort until sun down. Then these men who had actually conspired together against the king said to him, ‘Know, O king, that it is the law of the Medes and the Persians that any injunction or statute established by the king cannot be changed.’ So the king gave the order for Daniel to be seized and thrown into the den of lions.
The king said to Daniel, ‘May the God who you constantly serve deliver you.’ A stone was brought and placed over the mouth of the pit, and the king sealed it with his own signet ring and with the ring of his nobles, so that Daniel’s situation could not be changed. Then the king returned to his palace and spent the night without eating or any entertainment. And sleep fled from him.” Daniel 6:14-18
Darius plays the role of a character duped by his closest advisors because they knew how to appeal to his hunger to be worshiped by his people and for his people to be dependent upon him. Ask God what is the major character flaw in a leader that will flame his just anger? Whether it’s the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar or Belshazzar, we’ve seen the power of God against human hubris, especially in a political leader. Now the new king of the Medo-Persian Empire has been duped into having to execute his most skilled and trusted advisor.
LORD, the politics in the Medo-Persian Empire was dirty. Help me not to appeal to the pride in others to try and bring my opponents down. Help me never to play the role of Darius’ chief officials and protect me from the blindness of personal pride and from those who seek to appeal to pride in order to accomplish their evil ends.
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