Daniel 6:10 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 is one of the most beloved characters in the Bible. He lived in a land that could be hostile to his beliefs. We understand that he lived in captivity in Babylon. The interesting thing about Daniel is that he always stood out. Although the leaders he served under changed, and even the nations in charge changed, Daniel remained a constant.
But what was it that made Daniel such a tremendous testimony of living for God? And not just living for God but doing it in the midst of hostility in a land that did not honor or serve the God that he did. I believe that it was because he exhibited a quality which very few Christians seem to be willing to exhibit today, particularly in the time of the “cancel culture” that we see today.
We know the story of Daniel chapter six well. Due to jealousy those who worked with Daniel were looking to get him out of the way for their own personal gain and promotion. As they examined Daniel's life closely trying to find a flaw, they just couldn't. That's a tremendous testimony right there. They finally realized that if they were going to take him down, they would have to do so by having his faith conflict with law. They knew Daniel was faithful to his God and that if he had to choose between obedience to man or obedience to God, he would choose God.
They coerced Darius into enacting a law that made prayer to God illegal. And the punishment was severe. I find it very interesting how Daniel handled it. You see Daniel could have prayed in such a way that he would have never been found out. He could have sat silently praying in his heart without ever being noticed. But that's not how Daniel lived. He went to the same place where he always prayed. He also prayed in a very conspicuous place. He had to know that he was going to be found out. And of course, he was found out.
The point is this: Daniel could have obeyed God silently and not openly. He could have justified praying in his heart and not being found out, but that's not something he could do. Knowing full well the consequences he prayed consistently and openly, just as he always had.
The application for us is very simple. We live in a time when society doesn't need silent Christians. We live in a time where this dark world needs someone to stand up in light. And I don't mean that in a contentious, self-righteous way. I don't believe that was Daniel's purpose or his spirit. But for far too long Christians have been willing to be silent for their faith, and because we have been, I believe our society has suffered. For long enough we have allowed the world's criticism of our faith to silence us.
We need Christians who are not just trying to blend in with the world so they will not stand out. We also don't need to bring that type of atmosphere into our churches thinking that we will reach the world by being like the world. When I walked into church as an 18-year-old looking for something different in my life, I'm glad the church I went to offered me something different. It was in complete contrast to the way I had been living, and that's what I needed and was looking for.
What does this world need? What do those who do not know Christ, those whom you come into contact with every day need? How can we dispel the darkness that is overtaking our country and our world? We need to be like Daniel. We don't need to be silent in the way we live our Christian life, we need to be light. We don't need undercover Christians, we need those who will show this world just how wonderful it is to serve God, even if there are those who may not like the way we live. Let's not try to stand silently when we are commanded to stand openly.
How can we follow through and see God do a great work in and through our lives?
As it made sense for the One who was the Word of God to follow the Word of God, so too does it make sense for His followers to do the same.