Tag: King Darius

Integrity Accepts God’s Will

John MacArthurby John MacArthur

“Then the king went off to his palace and spent the night fasting, and no entertainment was brought before him; and his sleep fled from him. Then the king arose with the dawn, at the break of day, and went in haste to the lions’ den. And when he had come near the den to Daniel, he cried out with a troubled voice. The king spoke and said to Daniel, ‘Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you constantly serve, been able to deliver you from the lions?’ Then Daniel spoke to the king, ‘O king, live forever! My God sent His angel and shut the lions’ mouths, and they have not harmed me’” (Daniel 6:18-22a).

When circumstances seem darkest, we can see God’s hand most clearly.

It is obvious that King Darius cared deeply for Daniel and that he had some degree of faith in Daniel’s God. Although he believed that God could deliver Daniel (v. 16), he spent a distressing and sleepless night anxiously awaiting dawn, so he could see if his belief was true. At the crack of dawn he hurried to the lions’ den and called out to Daniel. Imagine his relief to hear Daniel’s voice and to learn about how the angel had shut the lions’ mouths.

Why did Darius think God would deliver Daniel? I’m sure he learned of God from Daniel himself. Surely Daniel talked about Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego’s deliverance from the fiery furnace and about other marvelous things God had done for His people. The king’s response shows that Daniel’s testimony was effective and that his integrity had lent credibility to his witness.

But suppose God hadn’t delivered Daniel from the lions. Would He have failed? No. Isaiah also believed God, but he was sawn in half. Stephen believed God but was stoned to death. Paul believed God but was beheaded. Trusting God means accepting His will, whether for life or death. And for Christians, “to live is Christ, and to die is gain” (Phil. 1:21).

by John MacArthur

Our crown awaits!

George Whittenby George Whitten

Hebrews 12:1-2 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

In 490 B.C., the Athenians won a crucial and decisive battle over the forces of King Darius I of Persia, on a plain near the Greek coastal town of Marathon. Upon delivering the important message of their victory, the Greek soldier who came to tell the good news died — he had completed the 26 mile course running and bearing good news, and did it totally unreserved until the moment he died. Today marathons are run all over the world, commemorating that very event 2500 years ago.

Anyone who has run a marathon can tell you how difficult the race is. No matter how good you are, how well trained, how prepared, there are times in the race you just want to quit. But those who persevere till the end receive a prize. Back in King Darius’ day, one would win only a crown made of laurel leaves. Today, athletes compete for trophies and medals. But in God’s race, we win something far more precious — a crown that is incorruptible.

I bet you’re tired today. You are overworked, overstressed, overwhelmed … DONE! Be encouraged! Just when you think you can’t run any further, you can! C’mon! Press through and press on for the great prize! God is with us, strengthening our feeble knees and moving us in the right direction!!

Your family in the Lord with much agape love

by George Whitten