Aug 14, 2022 |Still

He Who Shut the Lion’s Mouth

08.14.22 | Still

He Who Shut the Lion’s Mouth

Justin Detmers

Daniel 6

We all face unique hardships in life. How can we be the kind of people that are faithful, resilient, and honorable when those circumstances come our way? Pastor Justin Detmers shares the narrative of Daniel in the lions den and reminds us that we aren’t remarkable for our own glory but for God’s glory. Jesus shut the mouth of sin, satan, and death, so that we can emerge unscathed and take the good news of God to the rest of the world.

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Darius decided to appoint 120 satraps over the kingdom, stationed throughout the realm, and over them three administrators, including Daniel. These satraps would be accountable to them so that the king would not be defrauded. Daniel distinguished himself above the administrators and satraps because he had an extraordinary spirit, so the king planned to set him over the whole realm.

Daniel 6:1-3

This is what the LORD of Armies, the God of Israel, says to all the exiles I deported from Jerusalem to Babylon: “Build houses and live in them. Plant gardens and eat their produce. Pursue the well-being of the city I have deported you to. Pray to the LORD on its behalf, for when it thrives, you will thrive.”

Jeremiah 29:4-5,7

The administrators and satraps, therefore, kept trying to find a charge against Daniel regarding the kingdom. But they could find no charge or corruption, for he was trustworthy, and no negligence or corruption was found in him. Then these men said, “We will never find any charge against this Daniel unless we find something against him concerning the law of his God.”

Daniel 6:4-5

When Daniel learned that the document had been signed, he went into his house. The windows in its upstairs room opened toward Jerusalem, and three times a day he got down on his knees, prayed, and gave thanks to his God, just as he had done before. Then these men went as a group and found Daniel petitioning and imploring his God.

Daniel 6:10-11

Then they replied to the king, “Daniel, one of the Judean exiles, has ignored you, the king, and the edict you signed, for he prays three times a day.” As soon as the king heard this, he was very displeased; he set his mind on rescuing Daniel and made every effort until sundown to deliver him.

Daniel 6:13-14

So the king gave the order, and they brought Daniel and threw him into the lions’ den. The king said to Daniel, “May your God, whom you continually serve, rescue you!” A stone was brought and placed over the mouth of the den. The king sealed it with his own signet ring and with the signet rings of his nobles, so that nothing in regard to Daniel could be changed. Then the king went to his palace and spent the night fasting. No diversions were brought to him, and he could not sleep.

Daniel 6:16-18

Then Daniel spoke with the king: “May the king live forever. My God sent his angel and shut the lions’ mouths; and they haven’t harmed me, for I was found innocent before him. And also before you, Your Majesty, I have not done harm.” The king was overjoyed and gave orders to take Daniel out of the den. When Daniel was brought up from the den, he was found to be unharmed, for he trusted in his God.

Daniel 6:21-23

I issue a decree that in all my royal dominion, people must tremble in fear before the God of Daniel: For he is the living God, and he endures forever; his kingdom will never be destroyed, and his dominion has no end. He rescues and delivers; he performs signs and wonders in the heavens and on the earth, for he has rescued Daniel from the power of the lions.”

Daniel 6:26-27

To glorify the one who shuts lion’s mouths:

  • Be honorable exiles
  • Lion’s den (still) exists
  • Be saved by the better Daniel

    Conduct yourselves honorably among the Gentiles, so that when they slander you as evildoers, they will observe your good works and will glorify God on the day he visits. Submit to every human authority because of the Lord…

    Peter 2:12

    For it is God’s will that you silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing good. Submit as free people, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but as God’s slaves. Honor everyone. Love the brothers and sisters. Fear God. Honor the emperor.

    Peter 2:15-17

    Who by faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions…

    Hebrews 11:33

    Other people were tortured, not accepting release, so that they might gain a better resurrection. Others experienced mockings and scourgings, as well as bonds and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawed in two, they died by the sword, they wandered about in sheepskins, in goatskins, destitute, afflicted, and mistreated. The world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and on mountains, hiding in caves and holes in the ground.

    Hebrews 11:35-38

    Considering the story of Daniel and the lions’ den, what comes to mind re: your own prior knowledge? What do you think most people know/not know or assume about the story?
    A you read Daniel 6:23, what reason was given for why Daniel’s life was spared? How does this inform your understanding of how a person can find God’s favor?
    How did Daniel’s true citizenship and ultimate allegiance (seeing himself as an exile belonging to a distant land and serving a different King) graciously empower him to be a person of faith, resilience, and honor in the face of persecution and suffering?
    Sometimes, the story of Daniel 6 is misunderstood as teaching that God will automatically bless people who are faithful to Him. How does the ‘hall of faith’ in Hebrews 11, particularly in verses 33-40, show us that God’s rewards will not always be found in this life?
    How does this story of Daniel and the lions’ den relate or even to Jesus (‘the better Daniel’)? Consider items like being wrongly accused, suffering well, and coming out from a tomb alive? How does Daniel’s deliverance from the lions’ den relate to our ultimate deliverance?