Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, conquered Israel and took all the strong young men as captives. He trained them in learning science. Daniel was also chosen for the training.
One day, King Nebuchadnezzar was disturbed. He called his wise men and told them about a strange dream, which he had forgotten. He asked for the meaning of the dream.
The wise men did not know what to do. “Please try to remember your dream and only then we will tell you its meaning,” they pleaded. Angry, King Nebuchadnezzar ordered them to be killed!
Daniel prayed to God to reveal the dream to him. Else, he, too, would die. God showed Daniel the king’s dream. So, Daniel went to the king and told him, “No man can tell you about your dream. But God in heaven reveals the secrets. He has shown me your dream.”
Daniel said that in his dream the king had seen a huge and bright statue, with a gold head, silver chest and arms, brass stomach and thighs, iron legs, and feet of iron and clay. Then, a stone, which was not cut by human hands, smashed the image. Everything flew like dust in the wind.
Daniel told the king further, “God has made you a mighty king. You are the gold head. After you, two inferior kingdoms will arise. These are the silver and brass parts of the statue. Finally, a fourth kingdom will arise as strong as iron. But it shall be broken into two parts : iron and clay. Some parts of the kingdom
will be strong and some weak. The stone is the kingdom of God, which can never be destroyed. God wants you to know this.”
King Nebuchadnezzar fell before Daniel and said, “Truly, your Lord is God of all gods; he is omniscient!” He gave Daniel a great position in his kingdom and many gifts.
After Nebuchadnezzar, his son Belshazzar became the king of Babylon. Like his father, he also honoured Daniel for his wisdom. After Belshazzar’s death, Darius seized the throne.
King Darius appointed governors to run his empire and chose Daniel to supervise them. After some time, seeing his wisdom and loyalty, King Darius decided to make Daniel his successor.
The other administrators became jealous but were unable to find any fault with Daniel. They knew that they could accuse him only in his personal time with God.
So, they somehow convinced the king to pass a decree for thirty days, stating that no one should worship any god or man except King Darius. Anyone disobeying this order would be thrown into the lions’ pit.
Although Daniel knew about the law, he knelt beside the window that faced Jerusalem and prayed three times a day. The others reported Daniel’s disobedience to the king. The king was very unhappy to have passed such a law. He really wanted to save Daniel.
King Darius told Daniel, “Your God whom you serve continually will save you!” But he could not change his own law; so, he finally ordered Daniel to be thrown into the lions’ pit.
That night, the king could not eat or sleep. At the break of dawn, he rushed to the lions’ pit and called out sorrowfully to Daniel. “Daniel! Servant of the living God, will God you serve continually save you from the lions’ mouths?”
Daniel replied, “My God has closed the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me. I have been innocent of any evil against you or my God.” The king was very happy and ordered Daniel to be freed.
Then, King Darius passed another order, “I command that throughout my empire, everyone should fear and respect Daniel’s God. He saves and rescues; He performs wonders and miracles in heaven and on the earth.”