For anyone with a pulse, it comes as no surprise to say that we live in a world where conflict is everywhere; some would even say it is just the way of it. We experience it in the corporate world, on the battlefield, in the city square, in the halls of government, in the church (of all places), in school, even in the home. Conflict or hostility was a consequence of sin: Enmity will I put between you and the woman, between your offspring and hers – and has plagued the human race ever since the fall.
But not everyone handles conflict or difficulty the same way; some seem to have a knack for moving through life unfazed by turmoil around them while others have no fingernails and can’t sleep at night. Our text presents a classic contrast between the one who is at peace and another who cannot seem to find peace even though he decrees it.
prime minister – over the 2 over the 120 vv. 1-3
encouraged the king to consider him for vice-regent
palace plot vv. 4-9
jealousy and resentment
appealed to the king’s vanity
power had gone to his head – recent “acquisition” of the Babylonian empire
designed to not just neutralize Daniel but eliminate him altogether – basically a setup
the crisis vv. 10-13
aware of the decree, Daniel followed his usual routine v. 10
the trap is sprung on Daniel v. 11
and on King Darius vv. 12-13
finally understood the plot v. 14
Daniel – the target
Is this constitutional??? Is there precedent to pardon??? Is there any wiggle room???
the pressure increases v. 15
the law requires action
the law cannot be changed
the sentence must be carried out
the king commands vv. 16-17
Daniel is brought without any apparent struggle
consigned to the lion’s den
sealed in place – to guard against treachery on the part of either the king or his ministers
a sleepless and anxious night for Darius vv. 18-20a
no interest in
no ability to sleep
at the first possible legal moment – off to the lion’s den
anguish, worry, sorrow in his voice
a peaceful night for Daniel vv. 20b-23
God has taken care of me since I was faithful to him; oh, and by the way, I have been loyal to you, too.
no hint of anxiety in Daniel’s words or actions
no injury found on him
Peace be multiplied v. 25
saw Daniel had something he didn’t
something worth promoting in the kingdom
credited the difference to Daniel’s God
Prince of Peace Isa. 9:6 For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
not only his name but his character to restore peace to those who live in a world in turmoil
gives us His peace John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
peace the world cannot give or comprehend – peace of heart
made peace Col. 1:19-20 For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell, and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.
made peace possible between God and men
makes us at peace Rom. 5:1 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
actually brings peace about; applied atonement reconciles sinful man to holy God, no longer enemies of God
If any man will make peace with God, he must take hold of his strength, accept and close with Christ who is the power of God, or he can never make peace. He must be made “nigh by the blood of Christ. But alas! both Christ and faith are strangers to many souls, who yet persuade themselves they are at peace with God: O fatal mistake!Flavel
is our peace Eph. 2:14 For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation,
brought peace between people who were former enemies
What, at peace with the Father, and at war with the children? It cannot be. Do not some that hope they have made their peace with God, hate, revile, and persecute the children of God? Surely, in that day we are reconciled to the Lord, we are reconciled to all his people. We all then love a Christian as a Christian, and by this we may know that we are passed from death to life.Flavel
peace is on guard Phil. 4:7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
regardless of circumstances the child of God can be at peace – turmoil in the world, in the neighborhood, in the family, cannot overcome peace of heart and mind when it is guarded by Christ
“ Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee;” Isa 26:3
point people to
the eternal King of kings v. 26
the One who delivers and rescues v. 27
who has the power to deliver from the fiercest lion of all – the one who walks about seeking whom he may devour, our adversary the devil1 Peter 5:8
Be filled with tender affections toward the souls of men, with whom you treat for reconciliation: you had need be men of bowels [compassion], as well as men of brains: you see a multitude of poor souls upon the brink of eternal misery, and they know it not, but promise themselves peace, and fill themselves with vain hopes of heaven: and is there a more moving, melting spectacle in the world than this! O think with what bowels of commiseration Moses and Paul were filled, when the one desired rather to be blotted out of God’s book, and the other to be accursed from Christ, than that Israel should not be saved. Think how the bowels of Christ yearned over Jerusalem, and over the multitude.Flavel