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Daniel 6:8-11

6:8 Now let the king issue a written interdict 1  so that it cannot be altered, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be changed. 2  6:9 So King Darius issued the written interdict.

6:10 When Daniel realized 3  that a written decree had been issued, he entered his home, where the windows 4  in his upper room opened toward Jerusalem. 5  Three 6  times daily he was 7  kneeling 8  and offering prayers and thanks to his God just as he had been accustomed to do previously. 6:11 Then those officials who had gone to the king 9  came by collusion and found Daniel praying and asking for help before his God.

Daniel 6:14-25


6:14 When the king heard this, 10  he was very upset and began thinking about 11  how he might rescue Daniel. Until late afternoon 12  he was struggling to find a way to rescue him. 6:15 Then those men came by collusion to the king and 13  said to him, 14  “Recall, 15  O king, that it is a law of the Medes and Persians that no edict or decree that the king issues can be changed.” 6:16 So the king gave the order, 16  and Daniel was brought and thrown into a den 17  of lions. The king consoled 18  Daniel by saying, “Your God whom you continually serve will rescue you!” 6:17 Then a stone was brought and placed over the opening 19  to the den. The king sealed 20  it with his signet ring and with those 21  of his nobles so that nothing could be changed with regard to Daniel. 6:18 Then the king departed to his palace. But he spent the night without eating, and no diversions 22  were brought to him. He was unable to sleep. 23 

God Rescues Daniel from the Lions

6:19 In the morning, at the earliest sign of daylight, the king got up and rushed to the lions’ den. 6:20 As he approached the den, he called out to Daniel in a worried voice, 24  “Daniel, servant of the living God, was your God whom you continually serve able to rescue you from the lions?”

6:21 Then Daniel spoke to 25  the king, “O king, live forever! 6:22 My God sent his angel and closed the lions’ mouths so that they have not harmed me, because I was found to be innocent before him. Nor have I done any harm to you, O king.”

6:23 Then the king was delighted and gave an order to haul Daniel up from the den. So Daniel was hauled up out of the den. He had no injury of any kind, because he had trusted in his God. 6:24 The king gave another order, 26  and those men who had maliciously accused 27  Daniel were brought and thrown 28  into the lions’ den – they, their children, and their wives. 29  They did not even reach the bottom of the den before the lions overpowered them and crushed all their bones.

6:25 Then King Darius wrote to all the peoples, nations, and language groups who were living in all the land: “Peace and prosperity! 30 

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[6:8]  1 tn Aram “establish a written interdict and inscribe a written decree.”

[6:8]  2 tn Or “removed.”

[6:10]  3 tn Aram “knew.”

[6:10]  4 sn In later rabbinic thought this verse was sometimes cited as a proof text for the notion that one should pray only in a house with windows. See b. Berakhot 34b.

[6:10]  5 map For the location of Jerusalem see Map5 B1; Map6 F3; Map7 E2; Map8 F2; Map10 B3; JP1 F4; JP2 F4; JP3 F4; JP4 F4.

[6:10]  6 sn This is apparently the only specific mention in the OT of prayer being regularly offered three times a day. The practice was probably not unique to Daniel, however.

[6:10]  7 tc Read with several medieval Hebrew MSS and printed editions הֲוָה (havah) rather than the MT הוּא (hu’).

[6:10]  8 tn Aram “kneeling on his knees” (so NASB).

[6:10]  sn No specific posture for offering prayers is prescribed in the OT. Kneeling, as here, and standing were both practiced.

[6:11]  9 tn Aram “those men”; the referent (the administrative officials who had earlier approached the king about the edict) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

[6:14]  10 tn Aram “the word.”

[6:14]  11 tn Aram “placed his mind on.”

[6:14]  12 tn Aram “the entrances of the sun.”

[6:15]  13 tc Theodotion lacks the words “came by collusion to the king and.”

[6:15]  14 tn Aram “the king.”

[6:15]  15 tn Aram “know”; NAB “Keep in mind”; NASB “Recognize”; NIV, NCV “Remember.”

[6:16]  16 tn Aram “said.” So also in vv. 24, 25.

[6:16]  17 sn The den was perhaps a pit below ground level which could be safely observed from above.

[6:16]  18 tn Aram “answered and said [to Daniel].”

[6:17]  19 tn Aram “mouth.”

[6:17]  20 sn The purpose of the den being sealed was to prevent unauthorized tampering with the opening of the den. Any disturbance of the seal would immediately alert the officials to improper activity of this sort.

[6:17]  21 tn Aram “the signet rings.”

[6:18]  22 tn The meaning of Aramaic דַּחֲוָה (dakhavah) is a crux interpretum. Suggestions include “music,” “dancing girls,” “concubines,” “table,” “food” – all of which are uncertain. The translation employed here, suggested by earlier scholars, is deliberately vague. A number of recent English versions follow a similar approach with “entertainment” (e.g., NASB, NIV, NCV, TEV, CEV, NLT). On this word see further, HALOT 1849-50 s.v.; E. Vogt, Lexicon linguae aramaicae, 37.

[6:18]  23 tn Aram “his sleep fled from him.”

[6:20]  24 tn Aram “The king answered and said to Daniel.” This phrase has not been included in the translation for stylistic reasons; it is redundant in English.

[6:21]  25 tn Aram “with.”

[6:24]  26 tn Aram “said.”

[6:24]  27 tn Aram “had eaten the pieces of.” The Aramaic expression is ironic, in that the accusers who had figuratively “eaten the pieces of Daniel” are themselves literally devoured by the lions.

[6:24]  28 tn The Aramaic active impersonal verb is often used as a substitute for the passive.

[6:24]  29 tc The LXX specifies only the two overseers, together with their families, as those who were cast into the lions’ den.

[6:25]  30 tn Aram “May your peace be increased!”

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