When someone mentions the Biblical account of Daniel’s life, what is the first thing that you think of? Perhaps his refusal to eat the king’s meat (Daniel 1:5-16)? Or maybe that Daniel had “understanding in all visions and dreams” (Daniel 1:17)? What about him being favored over all the princes and presidents of the region by king Darius (Daniel 6:1-3)?
The first thing that I think of is Daniel surviving the lions’ den because he found favor with God (Daniel 6:22). Let’s take a moment to review why he was thrown into the lions’ den.
“All the presidents of the kingdom, the governors, and the princes, the counsellers and the captains, have consulted together to establish a royal statute, and to make a firm decree, that whosoever shall ask a petition of any God or man for thirty days, save of thee, O king, he shall be cast into the den of lions. Now, O king, establish the decree, and sign the writing, that it be not changed, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which altereth not.
Wherefore king Darius signed the writing and the decree.
Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime.”
– Daniel 6:7-10
Many people focus on Daniel’s prayer life when studying why he was thrown in the lions’ den, but let’s look at it a little differently.
Daniel knew that the decree against worshiping God had been made, and he knew what the penalty for breaking the order would be. Most of us, if we were brave enough to disobey the command, would likely go to our house, find a room with no windows (or better yet, we’d hide in the closet or attic), and would then pray…silently, and for a short period of time.
Daniel, on the other hand, went home, flung his windows wide open so he could face Jerusalem, knelt on his knees, prayed, and gave thanks to God – likely vocally. And he did this three times a day! He might as well have installed a neon, flashing sign that said, “I am breaking the decree and I don’t care about the consequences…no man has the authority to make this kind of order.” And he paid the price for it (Daniel 6:16).
The thing is, Daniel wasn’t afraid of what would happen if he stood for what was right. The king had no authority to demand that Daniel could not worship God, and Daniel wasn’t about to change.
What would happen if we were placed in the same situation? What if our leaders demanded that we wear a symbol of our obedience to them? What if they closed our churches or restricted (in any way) the way we worship? What if we couldn’t even sing praises unto God? If death was not the consequence…would we be bolder? Look at how everyone has caved to Unconstitutional (and quite frankly, illogical) mandates. Every single person I see is wearing a mask – either afraid of a virus that is not nearly as deadly as the government states…or afraid of what will happen if they stand up and say that mask mandates are wrong. I honestly don’t think many would be brave enough to worship God if an order such as king Darius’ was ever given, much less throw our windows open as we prayed.
At 20 years old, I have wondered how I can fix this. How can I get rid of the fear that is running rampant in the world? How can I get others to stand – whether for God or against tyranny? This week, I realized that I can’t (see my note at bottom of this post). Many people tell us when we graduate that you can get out there and change the world…but as one person you can’t. The only thing you can change is yourself.
It all comes back to Matthew 7:3-5:
“And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.”
– Matthew 7:3-5
We can’t even begin to try to “fix” what’s wrong in this world until we fix ourselves. To do this, we need to:
- Educate ourselves (we just can’t take other people’s word for things)
- Spend time in God’s Word
- Be the salt and light in the world
While we are unable to change others, we may inspire them to change themselves. Take a look at the end of Daniel chapter 6:
“Then the king arose very early in the morning, and went in haste unto the den of lions. And when he came to the den, he cried with a lamentable voice unto Daniel: and the king spake and said to Daniel, O Daniel, servant of the living God, is thy God, whom thou servest continually, able to deliver thee from the lions?
Then said Daniel unto the king, O king, live for ever. My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions’ mouths, that they have not hurt me: forasmuch as before him innocency was found in me; and also before thee, O king, have I done no hurt.
Then was the king exceedingly glad for him, and commanded that they should take Daniel up out of the den. So Daniel was taken up out of the den, and no manner of hurt was found upon him, because he believed in his God. And the king commanded, and they brought those men which had accused Daniel, and they cast them into the den of lions, them, their children, and their wives; and the lions had the mastery of them, and brake all their bones in pieces or ever they came at the bottom of the den.
Then king Darius wrote unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth; Peace be multiplied unto you. I make a decree, That in every dominion of my kingdom men tremble and fear before the God of Daniel: for he is the living God, and stedfast for ever, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed, and his dominion shall be even unto the end. He delivereth and rescueth, and he worketh signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who hath delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.”
– Daniel 6:19-27
Daniel was able to have a positive influence on king Darius because of his actions. Even though you may not be able to change those around you, you may be able to have an impact on them, just as Daniel did on king Darius. Let’s remember to get ourselves right with God and stand. Everything else will fall into place.
If you are not 100% sure that you’ll go to Heaven when you die, now is the time to repent and put your trust in Jesus Christ. If you have any questions or doubts about your salvation, click here to learn how you can be saved!
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, King James Version.
Author’s Note: What made me realize that I am unable to fix what’s wrong in my country until I fix myself? I signed up for a free Biblical Citizenship class that’s held on Monday nights at 7pm CST (it’s also recorded in case you’re unable to attend live). Here is the link to the first class, if you would like to watch it. If you’d like to join me in the class on Monday nights, you can sign up for the class here (it’s completely free…all you need is internet access).
7 thoughts on “You Can’t Change the World”
I love this post! Powerful truth!
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Thank you so much for your encouragement!
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Great post! What are your thoughts on Romans 13?
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Thank you so much!
I am assuming you are referencing Romans 13 in how it mentions that we should submit to our leaders, and that if we do not, then we are disobeying God. If you take a look at the Bible, you will see that Daniel, the Hebrew Midwives (https://backtostablehill.com/2020/09/02/exodus-115-20/), Moses, Rahab, the wise men who visited Jesus, Queen Esther, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah (also known as Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego), Peter & John in Acts 4-5, and even Jesus Himself all participated in civil disobedience of some kind against tyrannical rulers (and there are many other examples in the Bible).
There are some people who use Romans 13 to claim that the American Revolution was against God – after all, we massively rebelled against King George III (1). While this post is not specifically referencing the American Revolution, truths from this period in history can still be applied today. Take, for example, what Reverend Jacob Duché, a supporter of the British, said of the Colonists:
“Inasmuch as all rulers are in fact the servants of the public and appointed for no other purpose than to be ‘a terror to evil-doers and a praise to them that do well’ [c.f., Rom. 13:3], whenever this Divine order is inverted – whenever these rulers abuse their sacred trust by unrighteous attempts to injure, oppress, and enslave those very persons from whom alone, under God, their power is derived – does not humanity, does not reason, does not Scripture, call upon the man, the citizen, the Christian of such a community to ‘stand fast in that liberty wherewith Christ….hath made them free!’ [Galatians 5:1] The Apostle enjoins us to ‘submit to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake,’ but surely a submission to the unrighteous ordinances of unrighteous men, cannot be ‘for the Lord’s sake,’ for ‘He loveth righteousness and His countenance beholds the things that are just.’” (1)
Reverend Duché’s statement leads me to this: are we to submit to the ordinance of tyrannical leaders? Leaders who support abortion – some even up to birth (when we know abortion is wrong – Exodus 20:13, Exodus 21:22-25)? Leaders who mandate how, and when, we are able to worship God (e.g. not at all, six feet apart, no singing, etc.)? Leaders who support homosexuality (which, again, we know is wrong – Leviticus 18:22, and many others)? We have to draw the line somewhere, and I believe that Reverend Duché hit the nail on the head – “surely a submission to the unrighteous ordinances of unrighteous men, cannot be ‘for the Lord’s sake’, for ‘He loveth righteousness and His countenance beholds the things that are just.’” (1)
Here’s one of my favorite accounts from the Revolutionary War: Reverend Jonas Clarke was hiding John Adams and John Hancock in Lexington. Paul Revere warned them of the approaching British Redcoats during his famous Midnight Ride on April 18, 1775. The very next morning, the British Major Pitcairn shouted to the militia who had gathered at Reverend Jonas Clarke’s home, “Disperse, ye villains, lay down your arms in the name of George the Sovereign King of England.” Reverend Clarke promptly replied, “We recognize no Sovereign but God and no King but Jesus.” And that needs to start being our answer, too. See, we are Christians first, and Americans second. Being a Christian means we need to be about God’s business…and that alone makes us rebels in today’s world.
Thank you so much for taking the time to comment! I really appreciate it.
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I agree with you! It is popular Christian thought that you should obey man unless it directly disobeys God’s command. However, that is an un-biblical belief – not based on Scripture.
Only, it makes more sense as to why the apostles said what they said when you understand the rulers that they are referring to. It would take a long time to explain it in this comment, but basically, I have come to realize that the rulers Paul was talking about were not man appointed authorities, but rather, the biblical Judicial system’s authorities (Judges) as outlined in Scripture.
I am planning on making a post on my blog about it soon. 😀
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Amen! I look forward to reading your post!
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