Daniel – A Prophet in Exile

Profile of Daniel the Prophet, Who Always Put God First

Daniel the Prophet Interprets Nebuchadnezzar's Dream
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Daniel the prophet was only a teenager when introduced in the book of Daniel and was an old man at the close of the book, yet never once in his life did his faith in God waver.

Daniel means "God is judge," in Hebrew; however, the Babylonians who captured him from Judah wanted to wipe out any identification with his past, so they renamed him Belteshazzar, which means "Oh lady (wife of the god Bel) protect the king."  Early in this retraining program, they wanted him to eat the king's rich food and wine, but Daniel and his Hebrew friends, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, chose vegetables and water instead.

  At the end of a test period, they were healthier than the others and were allowed to continue their Jewish diet.

It was then God gave Daniel the ability to interpret visions and dreams.  Before long, Daniel was explaining the dreams of King Nebuchadnezzar.

Because Daniel possessed wisdom bestowed by God and was conscientious in his work, he not only prospered during the reigns of successive rulers, but King Darius planned to put him in charge of the entire kingdom.  The other advisers became so jealous they conspired against Daniel and managed to get him thrown into a den of hungry lions:

The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God. (Daniel 6:23, NIV)

The prophecies in the book of Daniel humble the arrogant pagan rulers and exalt the sovereignty of God.  Daniel himself is held up as a model of faith because no matter what happened, he kept his eyes firmly focused on God.

Accomplishments of Daniel the Prophet

Daniel became a skilled government administrator, excelling at whatever tasks were assigned to him.  He was first and foremost a servant of God, a prophet who set an example to God's people on how to live a holy life.  He survived the lion's den because of his faith in God.

Strengths of Daniel the Prophet

Daniel adapted well to the foreign environment of his captors while keeping his own values and integrity.  He learned quickly.  By being fair and honest in his dealings, he gained the respect of kings.

Life Lessons from Daniel

Many ungodly influences tempt us in our daily lives.  We are constantly pressured to give in to the values of our culture.  Daniel teaches us that through prayer and obedience, we can stay true to the will of God.

Hometown

Daniel was born in Jerusalem then transported to Babylon.

Referenced in the Bible

The book of Daniel, Matthew 24:15.

Occupation

Adviser to kings, government administrator, prophet.

Family Tree

Daniel's parents are not listed, but the Bible implies he came from a royal or noble family.

Key Verses

Daniel 5:12
"This man Daniel, whom the king called Belteshazzar, was found to have a keen mind and knowledge and understanding, and also the ability to interpret dreams, explain riddles and solve difficult problems. Call for Daniel, and he will tell you what the writing means.” (NIV)

Daniel 6:22
"My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, O king.” (NIV)

Daniel 12:13
“As for you, go your way till the end. You will rest, and then at the end of the days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance." (NIV)