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Daniel 6:10-13

Verses covered in this passage:

  • Daniel 6:10
  • Daniel 6:11
  • Daniel 6:12
  • Daniel 6:13

The new ruler of Babylon, Darius, appoints 120 satraps over the kingdom. Satraps were governors over provinces, and were in charge of collecting tax revenue. Daniel was made one of three commissioners who oversaw the satraps, ensuring that they did not hold back money from the king for themselves. Daniel was exceptional at this job, making enemies of the other members of the Persian bureaucracy. The satraps and commissioners conspired against him, but found there was no way to accuse Daniel of corruption. Thus, they created a legal trap to force Daniel to break the law, for they knew he was a devout follower of his God.

Through flattery, the satraps coax King Darius into signing a law that anyone who did not pray to the king himself for the next thirty days would be thrown into the lions’ den. Darius signed the law, which could not be changed, due to the strict bureaucratic structure of Medo-Persian governance.

Daniel, learning about the new law, immediately prays to God and praises Him. No law would keep him from his relationship with God. The satraps spy on Daniel at prayer, and inform the king he has violated the new law. Darius is upset. He favors Daniel, due to Daniel’s strong character and shrewd management of the satraps, preventing theft and fraud within the government. But Darius cannot undo his own law.

So, Daniel is taken to the lion’s den. Darius encourages Daniel, speculating that his God will save him from harm. The den is sealed. Darius spends all night awake, fasting, waiting.

In the morning the den is unsealed. Daniel is alive. He declares that God sent an angel to shut the lions’ mouths, so that no harm came to him, for he was innocent in God’s sight. Darius is overjoyed. He commands for Daniel to be taken out of the den, and the satrap conspirators (along with their families) are thrown into the den of lions.

Darius writes a decree to all the peoples and languages of his kingdom, declaring that they should fear the God of Daniel, who is a living God, who endures forever, who rescued Daniel from the lions.


Although Daniel knew the decree had been signed he continued praying, the rulers accused him before the king.

Daniel was appointed as one of three commissioners who oversaw 120 satraps and reported to king Darius. Daniel excelled in his position so much so that the king planned to appoint him over the entire kingdom. This made the other satraps and commissioners jealous and they looked for a way to accuse Daniel but found none. They knew that he was obedient to God and so they planned to find a way to accuse him based on his faith. They came before the king and advised him that he should sign a decree that made him the sole object of prayer or petitioning for 30 days. If anyone disobeyed, they would be cast into the lion’s den.

Daniel knew that the document was signed, but he was obedient to the one true God. He entered his house (now in his roof chamber he had windows open toward Jerusalem). Despite the threat of death in the lion’s den, he continued kneeling on his knees three times a day, praying and giving thanks before his God, as he had been doing previously. It’s likely the other rulers knew that this was Daniel’s habit as these men came by agreement and found Daniel making petition and supplication before his God. Their plan worked perfectly and they now had grounds to accuse Daniel of lawbreaking before the king.

Then they approached and spoke before the king about the king’s injunction, “Did you not sign an injunction that any man who makes a petition to any god or man besides you, O king, for thirty days, is to be cast into the lions’ den?” The king replied, “The statement is true, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which may not be revoked.” Despite being King, Darius was bound by the law he had made. Darius was unaware of the plot by his satraps and commissioners to kill Daniel; he had been planning to make him ruler over the entire kingdom (verse 3). Then they answered and spoke before the king, “Daniel, who is one of the exiles from Judah, pays no attention to you, O king, or to the injunction which you signed, but keeps making his petition three times a day.” Darius was bound by the law and his rulers had caught Daniel breaking the law; it seems Daniel’s fate was sealed.

10 Now when Daniel knew that the document was signed, he entered his house (now in his roof chamber he had windows open toward Jerusalem); and he continued kneeling on his knees three times a day, praying and giving thanks before his God, as he had been doing previously. 11 Then these men came by agreement and found Daniel making petition and supplication before his God.12 Then they approached and spoke before the king about the king’s injunction, “Did you not sign an injunction that any man who makes a petition to any god or man besides you, O king, for thirty days, is to be cast into the lions’ den?” The king replied, “The statement is true, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which may not be revoked.” 13 Then they answered and spoke before the king, “Daniel, who is one of the exiles from Judah, pays no attention to you, O king, or to the injunction which you signed, but keeps making his petition three times a day.”

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