Decoding Daniel - an in depth Bible study of the book of Daniel

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Daniel 1

Outline and Background

Crisis Point - Daniel 1:1

Captive Situation - Daniel 1:2

Crucial Test - Daniel 1:3-7

Critical Choice - Daniel 1:8-13

Commendable Decision & Consequent Blessing - Daniel 1:14-20

Coincident Prophecy - Daniel 1:21

Application and Typical Prophecies

Captive Situation - Daniel 1:2

 It is through the trials and tribulations of life that God molds men for times of crisis. Among the royal family taken captive was a young man of about fourteen to seventeen years of age named Daniel. Like Joseph, Daniel would be tempted, tested and approved for service to Godís glory in two pagan empires.

Daniel was born during the reign of the godly king Josiah about 620 B.C. Nothing is known of his parents, except that they were of royal ancestry. He had had opportunity to observe apostasy and was now experiencing firsthand what happens to a people when their leaders are ungodly and compromise Godís Word. In 609, death came to Josiah and his religious reforms. The three kings that succeeded Josiah all did evil in the eyes of the LORD. Jehoahaz reigned in Jerusalem three months (2 Kings 23:31-32). He was followed by Jehoiakim, who reigned eleven years (2 Kings 23:36-37). Jehoiachin sat on the throne when Jerusalem was besieged. Nebuchadnezzar took Jehoiachin captive to Babylon. He also took from Jerusalem to Babylon the king's mother, his wives, his officials and the leading men of the land (2 Kings 24:15).

Since Daniel revealed and interpreted Nebuchadnezzarís Dream of the Image in the second year of the kingís reign (602 B.C., Daniel 2:1), he must have been deported in 605 B.C.

In all likelihood, Daniel knew the predictions of Isaiah and Jeremiah. Now he was witnessing as well as experiencing the fulfillment of prophecy. What impact would this fulfillment have on his life? It was time to find outóand one of Godís methods of revealing the impact of His Word on oneís life is through testing.

"Remember how the LORD your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands" (Deuteronomy 8:2).

Certainly, captivity would have been a humbling experience. All the grand illusions that might have filled Danielís heart would have been knocked out of him during the long trek to Babylon. A few descendants of Hezekiah arrived with the kind of heart that God seeks. Four of the royal
youths proved to be men of conviction, courage and commitment, displaying an uncompromising character. The rest of the royal family faded from Scripture because they lacked these three essential qualities of faith.

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