Thoughts to Ponder: Chapter 6
Chapter 6: A Time to Praise ~ Daniel 2:17-23
Q1 – How did King Nebuchadnezzar’s refusal to reveal the contents of his dream work to Daniel’s ultimate advantage? Has adversity ever worked to your advantage?
A1 – When Nebuchadnezzar demanded that the wise men tell him the contents of his dream as well as interpret it, he sought to separate the divinely inspired wise men from the imposters. He wanted to get to the truth of the matter and not just hear what someone thought he wanted to hear.
This definitely worked to Daniel’s advantage, because he was the only one who could rise to such a challenge. Immediately, this ability set Daniel apart from all the other wise men. Daniel gained the respect of the king, which then worked in his favor for him to later be placed in positions of authority.
Q2 – Consider the roller coaster ride of emotions that Daniel had to handle during this relatively short period of time, going from a regular day to facing his execution to his ultimate delivery. How would these events have impacted you?
A2 – Most of us would probably have been ready to collapse, physically and emotionally, after such a day. Thankfully, the Lord is able to make us stand, even when our knees buckle and we are not able to stand on our own. “To their own master, servants stand or fall. And they will stand, for the Lord is able to make them stand.” (Romans 14:4 NIV)
Think of instances when you or someone else has been upheld by the power of God.
Q3 – If God had chosen not to reveal King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream to Daniel, what do you think Daniel’s response would have been? What would your response have been?
A3 – Given what is revealed about Daniel’s character throughout the book, it’s highly doubtful that Daniel would have wavered in his faith. If possible, he would probably have tried to reason with the king and the officials. If that didn’t work, he would likely have accepted his death, just as he did not resist being thrown in the den of lions.
His friends’ statement when they were to be thrown into the fiery furnace says it all—“If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.” (Daniel 3:17-18 NIV) Their belief must have been something like—Do the right thing, no matter what, and whether you live or whether you die, God will take care of you.