“The King said to Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar, are you able to make known to me the dreams which I have seen and the interpretation of it? Daniel answered the King, The [ mysterious] secret which the King has demanded neither the wise men, enchanters, magicians nor astrologers can show the king;
But there is a God in heaven who reveals secrets, and He has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what it is that shall be in the latter days (at the end of days). The dream and the visions in your head upon your are bed are these: ……. ”
Daniel 2:27 – 28 AMP
In the 6th Century BC during the Babylonian reign of King Nebuchadnezzar, lived a youth born into Jewish nobility whose name was Daniel. The King had asked the head eunuch to bring to his court youths from Israel that were “without blemish, well-favored in appearance, and skillful in wisdom, discernment and understanding, apt in learning, knowledge, competent to stand and serve in the king’s palace – and to teach them the literature and language of the Chaldeans” Daniel 1:3-4 It was the King’s intention to train these children up in the way of his own culture and for them to serve in his kingdom court. Daniel was in this group of Jewish youths that had been taken from all that they knew – loved ones, temple, rabbis, friends – and brought to a nation with a completely different set of rules, laws, gods and cultural way of life. It is in this context that we must study just how remarkable Daniel truly was-
Upon their arrival, the king set out out to change the palates of the young Jewish boys by serving them his “dainties” or rich foods and wine. Daniel wisely requested of the king’s eunuchs that he and his friends might not defile themselves (Dan. 1:8), but that instead might be allowed to consume a diet of vegetables and water. The eunuch consented but placed a restriction of 10 days on the request. After the 10 days, the young men were noticeably looking better and “had taken on more flesh” ( had gained weight). God rewarded their obedience to his laws by “giving them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom, and Daniel had understanding in all kinds of visions and dreams.”
“And in all matters of wisdom and understanding concerning which the king asked them, he found them ten times better than all the learned magicians and enchanters who were in his whole realm.” Daniel 1:20 AMP
One night King Neb (who was given to violent rants and raging ) had an unsettling dream. He called in all of his wise men; the enchanters, sorcerers, diviners to come to the palace to interpret his dream. If they were unsuccessful in the interpretation – then all of them would be killed and their homes would be covered in camel-poo; a “dunghill”.
Daniel, after speaking to the king’s guard to gain understanding, then went to the king to ask to be allowed to be given more time to hear from God. “Then the secret was revealed to Daniel in a vision of the night, and Daniel blessed the God of Heaven“. Daniel 2:19 Daniel then gave God all praise and worshipped Him for answering the request of the king in the interpretation of his dream. He gave an accurate interpretation to the king, thus saving his friends and the wise men from certain destruction. The dream occurred in the 2nd year of King Nebuchadnezzar’s reign when Daniel would still be considered a youth having only been in Babylon one full year.
Throughout the life of Daniel, there were a number of well known biblical accounts of hardship, persecution, and near-death experiences. God would continuously move to save Daniel, his friends; Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego and at least in the beginning, other wise men in the inner court of the king. Well into his 80’s, Daniel remained true and his convictions steadfast to his God. There probably was not a Jewish temple in Babylon. Daniel & Friends worshipped God and not the idols of that day. How did Daniel maintain this spirit of excellence in the matters of the spiritual without consistent formalized training and the support of teachers and rabbi’s in his surroundings ? The only answers that I can derive from reading the book of Daniel is his strong, intimate relationship with God through a discipline of prayer and remaining in close fellowship with friends and fellow Jewish believers.
From quite an early young age, Daniel must have been introduced to the stories of his forefathers; Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses and the great history of the people of Israel. Even as a youth, Daniel’s knowledge of God’s laws and commands were on display as he was decisive in matters of diet, maintaining a consistent discipline of daily prayer, honoring those in authority and possessing overall a spirit of wisdom and discernment in many matters. His childhood exposure to prayer would unveil living proof that the Great God of Israel would hear and respond if he released his needs and desires to heaven. Although the scriptures chose not to pull back the curtain on Daniel’s earliest upbringing, we can be confident that he was brought up in a culture that deeply esteemed and revered the One True God of Israel.
It is important to note that the Holy Spirit did not dwell within Daniel. He (Holy Spirit) was not released until after the resurrection of Jesus, hundreds of years later. (see Acts 2:1) In fact, Holy Spirit did not dwell within Abraham, Sarah, Esther, Ruth, King David, Joseph, Isaiah nor any other Jewish Old Testament Hero. The scriptures state that God was with Abraham, David, and Joseph but His Spirit did not reside within them. Old Testament heroes did not have the advantage of the Spirit’s power and might to help them accomplish the will of God as the redeemed do today.
Hundreds of years later, the beloved Spirit’s power flowed effortlessly through Jesus and his disciples in frequent displays of healing that were demonstrated across entire regions, displaying God’s heart and the depth of His concern for the oppressed. This is the same Spirit-power that raised Jesus from the dead, Who would heal the sick and the infirmed, and deliver the mentally ill and the addicted. Healing, which is typically associated with Jesus, is documented in the Old Testament, occurring in specific, infrequent circumstances and by God’s direction. The first mention of prayer occurred when Abraham was directed to pray for Abimelech and the wombs of the women in his household were healed. Genesis 20:17 ( https://sacredramblings.com/2015/12/05/prayer-and-the-law-of-first-mention ) It is interesting that God never directed Daniel to pray to heal Nebuchadnezzar in the 7 years he turned the king into a yard animal. Daniel 4:25-25
Now more than perhaps ever, it is the disciplined, excellent spirit displayed by Daniel that is required to impact our broken and failing world. It is time to stand and to wisely lead in our marketplace, in our families, and in our communities and our governments as servants of hope and agents of God. We must not only be know-ers of His word but unconfused, confident doers. Daniel was uniquely gifted by God to be His prophet for that season. It is doubtful that Daniel asked God for foretelling of futures or the ability to interpret dreams – that is why it was a gift – but it was the obedient, strategic utilization of these gifts that carried Daniel to greatness. It is the knowledge and use of your own gifts that will carry you to yours.