History is Philosophy teaching by examples. — Thucydides

Story of the Bible Told for Young and Old - Jesse Hurlbut




Daniel in the Den of Lions.


The lands which has been the Babylonian or Chaldean empire now became the empire of Persia; and over these Darius was the king. King Darius gave to Daniel, who was now a very old man, a high place in honor and in power. Among all the rulers over the land Daniel stood first, for the king saw that he was wise, and able to rule. This made the other princes and rulers very jealous, and they tried to find something evil in Daniel, so that they could speak to the king against him.

These men knew that three times every day Daniel went to his room, and opened the window that was toward the city of Jerusalem, and looking toward Jerusalem made his prayer to God. Jerusalem was at that time in ruins, and the Temple was no longer standing; but Daniel prayed three times each day with his face toward the place where the house of God had once stood, although it was many hundreds of miles away.

These nobles thought that in Daniel's prayers they could find a chance to do him harm, and perhaps cause him to be put to death. They came to King Darius, and said to him:

"All the rulers have agreed together to have a law made that for thirty days no one shall ask anything of any god or any man, except from you, O king; and that if any one shall pray to any god, or shall ask anything from any man during thirty days, except from you, O king, he shall be thrown into the den where the lions are kept. Now, O king, make the law, and sign the writing, so that it cannot be changed, for no law among the Medes and Persians can be altered."

The king was not a wise man, and being foolish and vain, he was pleased with this law which would set him even above the gods. So, without asking Daniel's advice, he signed the writing; and the law was made, and the word was sent out through the kingdom that for thirty days no one should pray to any god, or ask a favor of any man.

Daniel knew that the law had been made, but every day he went to his room three times, and opened the window that looked toward Jerusalem, and offered his prayer to the Lord, just as he had prayed in other times. These rulers were watching near by, and they saw Daniel kneeling in prayer to God. Then they came to the king and said, "O King Darius, have you not made a law that if any one in thirty days offers a prayer, he shall be thrown into the den of lions?" "It is true," said the king. "The law has been made, and it must stand."

They said to the king, "There is one man who does not obey the law which you have made. It is that Daniel, one of the captive Jews. Every day Daniel prays to his God three times, just as he did before you signed the writing of the law."

Then the king was very sorry for what he had done, for he loved Daniel, and knew that no one could take his place in the kingdom. All day, until the sun went down, he tried in vain to find some way to save Daniel's life; but when evening came these men again told him of the law that he had made, and said to him that it must be kept. Very unwillingly the king sent for Daniel, and gave him order that he should be thrown into the den of lions. He said to Daniel, "Perhaps your God, whom you serve so faithfully, will save you from the lions."

They led Daniel to the mouth of the pit where the lions were kept, and they threw him in; and over the mouth they placed a stone; and the king sealed it with his own seal and with the seals of his nobles, so that no one might take away the stone and let Daniel out of the den.

Daniel in the Lion's den
DANIEL IN THE DEN OF LIONS


Then the king went again to his palace, but that night he was so sad that he could not eat, nor did he listen to music as he was used to listen. He could not sleep, for all through the night he was thinking of Daniel. Very early in the morning he rose up from his bed, and went in haste to the den of lions. He broke the seal, and took away the stone, and in a voice full of sorrow he called out, scarcely hoping to hear any answer except the roaring of the lions, "O Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God been able to keep you safe from the lions?"

And out of the darkness in the den came the voice of Daniel, saying, "O king, may you live forever! My God has sent his angel, and has shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because my God saw that I had done no wrong. And I have done no wrong toward you, O king!"

Daniel in the Lion's den
DANIEL ANSWERS THE KING


Then the king was glad. He gave to his servants orders to take Daniel out of the den. Daniel was brought out safe and without harm, because he had trusted fully in the Lord God. Then, by the king's command, they seized those men who had spoken against Daniel, and with them their wives and their children, for the king was exceedingly angry with them. They were all thrown into the den, and the hungry lions leaped upon them, and tore them in pieces as soon as they fell upon the floor of the den.

It was very cruel and unjust to put to death with these men their wives and children, who had done no wrong, either to King Darius or to Daniel. But cruel and unjust as it was, such things were common in all the lands of that part of the world. The lives of people were but little cared for, and children often suffered death for their parent's crime.

After this King Darius wrote to all the lands and the peoples in the many kingdoms under his rule, "May peace be given to you all abundantly! I make a law that everywhere among my kingdoms men fear and worship the Lord God of Daniel, for he is the living God, above all other gods, who only can save men."

And Daniel stood beside King Darius unto the end of his reign, and afterward while Cyrus the Persian was king over all the lands.

Daniel lived for a number of years after being saved from the lions. He had several wonderful dreams and visions, which showed him what would come to pass many years afterward, and even to the coming of Jesus Christ.



Contents

Front Matter
Review

The Story of a Beautiful Garden
The First Baby in the World and His Brother
The Great Ship That Saved Eight People
The Tower That Was Never Finished
The Story of a Long Journey
How Abram's Choice Brought Blessing
The Angel by the Well
The Rain of Fire That Fell on a City
The Boy Who Became an Archer
How an Angel's Voice Saved a Boy's Life
The Story of a Journey after a Wife
How Jacob Stole His Brother's Blessing
Jacob's Wonderful Dream
A Midnight Wrestling Match
The Rich Man's Son Who Was Sold as a Slave
From the Prison to the Palace
How Joseph's Dream Came True
A Lost Brother Found
From the Land of Famine to the Land of Plenty
The Beautiful Baby Who Was Found in a River
The Voice from the Burning Bush
The River That Ran Blood
The Night When a Nation Was Born
How the Sea Became Dry Land and the Sky Rained Bre
The Mountain That Smoked and Words That Were Spoke
How Aaron Made a Golden Calf and What Became of It
The Tent Where God Lived Among His People
How They Worshipped God in the Tabernacle
What Strong Drink Brought to Aaron's Sons
The Scapegoat in the Wilderness
The Cluster of Grapes from the Land of Canaan
How the Long Journey of the Israelites Came to an
What a Wise Man Learned from an Ass
How Moses Looked upon the Promised Land
The Story of Job
The Story of a Scarlet Cord
How the River Jordan Became Dry
The Story of a Wedge of Gold
How Joshua Conquered the Land of Canaan
The Old Man Who Fought Against the Giants
The Avenger of Blook and the Cities of Refuge
The Story of an Altar Beside the River
The Presnt That Ehud Brought to King Eglon
How a Woman Won a Great Victory
Gideon and His Brave Three Hundred
Jephthah's Rash Promise and What Came from It
The Strong Man: How He Lived and How He Died
The Idol Temple at Dan and Its Priest
How Ruth Gleaned in the Field of Boaz
The Little Boy with a Linen Coat
How the Idol Fell Down Before the Ark
The Last of the Judges
The Tall Man Who Was Chosen King
How Saul Saved the Eyes of the Men of Jabesh
The Brave Young Prince
Saul's Great Sin and His Great Loss
The Shepherd Boy of Bethlehem
The Shepherd Boy's Fight with the Giant
The Little Boy Looking for the Arrows
Where David Found the Giant's Sword
How David Spared Saul's Life
The Last Days of King Saul
The Shepherd Boy Becomes a King
The Sound in the Treetops
The Cripple at the King's Table
The Prophet's Story of the Little Lamb
David's Handsome Son and How He Stole the Kingdom
Absalom in the Wood; David on the Throne
The Angel with the Drawn Sword on Mount Moriah
Solomon on This Father's Throne
The Wise Young King
The House of God on Mount Moriah
The Last Days of Solomon's Reign
The Breaking Up of a Great Kingdom
The King Who Led Israel to Sin
The Prophet Who Raised a Boy to Life
The Prayer That Was Answered in Fire
The Voice That Spoke to Elijah in the Mount
The Wounded Prophet and His Story
What Ahab Paid for His Vineyard
The Arrow That Killed a King
Elijah's Chariot of Fire
A Spring Sweetened by Salt
The Pot of Oil and the Pot of Poison
The Little Boy at Shunem
How a Little Girl Helped to Cure a Leper
The Chariots of Fire around Elisha
What the Lepers Found in the Camp
Jehu, the Furious Driver of His Chariot
Elisha and the Bow; Jonah and Nineveh
How the Ten Tribes Were Lost
The First Four Kings of Judah
The Little Boy Who Was Crowned King
Three Kings and a Great Prophet
The Good King Hezekiah
The Lost Book Found in the Temple
The Last Four Kings of Judah and the Weeping Proph
What Ezekiel Saw in the Valley
The Jewish Captives in the Court of the King
The Golden Image and the Fiery Furnace
The Tree That Was Cut Down and Grew Again
The Writing upon the Wall
Daniel in the Den of Lions
The Story of a Joyous Journey
The New Temple on Mount Moriah
The Beautiful Queen of Persia
The Scribe Who Wrote the Old Testament
The Nobleman Who Built the Wall of Jerusalem
Ezra's Great Bible Class in Jerusalem
The Angel by the Altar
The Manger of Bethlehem
The Star and the Wise Men
The Boy in his Father's House
The Prophet in the Wilderness
Jesus in the Desert, and beside the River
The Water Jars at the Wedding Feast
The Stranger at the Well
The Story of a Boy in Capernaum and a Riot
A Net Full of Fishes
The Leper and the Man Let Down through the Roof
The Cripple at the Pool and the Withered Hand
The Twelve Disciples and the Sermon on the Mount
The Captain's Servant, the Widow's Son, and a Sinn
Some Stories Jesus Told by the Sea
"Peace, Be Still"
The Little Girl Who Was Raised to Life
A Dancing Girl and What Was Given Her
The Feast beside the Sea and What Followed It
The Answer to a Mother's Prayer
The Glory of Jesus on the Mountain
The Little Child in the Arms of Jesus
At the Feast of Tabernacles
The Man with Clay on His Face
The Good Shepherd and the Good Samaritan
Lazarus Raised to Life
Some Parables in Perea
The Poor Rich Man and the Rich Poor Man
Jesus at Jericho
Palm Sunday
The Last Vistis of Jesus to the Temple
The Parables on the Mount of Olives
The Last Supper
The Olive Orchard and the High Priests Hall
The Crown of Thorns
The Darkest Day of All the World
The Brightest Day of All the World
The Stranger on the Shore
The Church of the First Days
The Man at the Beautiful Gate
The Right Way to Give, and the Wrong Way
Stephen with the Shining Face
The Man Reading in the Chariot
The Voice That Spoke to Saul
What Peter Saw by the Sea
How the Iron Gate Was Opened
The Earliest Missionaries
The Song in the Prison
Paul's Speech on the Hill
Paul at Corinth
Paul at Ephesus
Paul's Last Journey to Jerusalem
The Speech on the Stairs
Two Years in Prison
The Story That Paul Told to the King
Paul in the Storm
How Paul Came to Rome and How He Lived There
The Throne of God
The City of God