“My God sent His angel and shut the lions’ mouths, and they have not harmed me, because I was found blameless before Him; and also before you, O king, I have done no harm.” (Daniel 6:22 ESV)
This verse places us in an historic moment in the life of Daniel. His love for God was greater than his own life. Even as he faced the fearsome jaws of the lions, he was confident the faithful God of his ancestors, the same God who opened the Red Sea, the God of fulfilled promises, would be his Protector.
Facing the lions wasn’t easy for Daniel. He wasn’t a superman with special powers to dominate the lions or make them disappear. He was a man of faith, and the source of his assurance came from confidence in the almighty God.
The fear of losing our life can tempt us to surrender, to forget our principles and values, and even our faith. Facing the dilemma of choosing between life in this world and life that comes through faith in Jesus gives us a unique perspective. Jesus said, “For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?” (Matthew 16:26 ESV)
Daniel trusted in God, which not only ensured his earthly life but also won him the respect of King Darius and the possibility that an empire would recognize and worship the one true God. Concerning this, in a decree, the Persian king wrote, “For He is the living God, enduring forever; His kingdom shall never be destroyed, and His dominion shall be to the end. He delivers and rescues: He works signs and wonders in heaven and on earth, He who has saved Daniel from the power of the lions” (Daniel 6:26b-27 ESV).
The God who shut the lions’ mouths is the same God who opened the tomb and raised Christ from the dead. He is our strength in times of weakness and the Source of our hope when we despair. No matter what life is throwing at you, God is greater than your circumstances and fears. Trust Him. He never fails. He never forsakes. And He understands everything you’re going through.
And who knows better than Jesus—the One who became like us, bore our sins and sorrows, and took them to the cross. He came to comfort us. He knows how hard life can be. He tells us, “I have said these things to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33 ESV).
Prayer: Heavenly Father, help us to face the lions in our lives with the assurance of Your protection and love. In Jesus’ Name, we pray. Amen.
Taken from the message, “Facing the Lions,” written by Wendy Perez, a ministry volunteer in LHM’s Panama ministry center.
Reprinted with permission from Lutheran Hour Ministries
1. What’s the latest “lion” you’ve had to face in your life? How’s that struggle going?
2. How do you envision the story of Daniel in the lion’s den?
3. Have you ever been a support to someone who was dealing with some scary issues in his or her life? What did you do to help?