BOOK OF DANIEL-Introduction to Daniel Chapter 6

Posted by on Oct 29, 2018 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on BOOK OF DANIEL-Introduction to Daniel Chapter 6

Introduction to Daniel Chapter 6

Certainly, when someone mentions the Bible character Daniel, the greater majority of people immediately think of Daniel in the lion’s den which Daniel chapter 6 discusses. But rather than focusing on the message God is conveying in chapter 6 and how the deliverance of Daniel from the lion’s mouths is indeed a significant message for the reader, scholars have, again, chosen to use this chapter as one of their main focuses to discredit the entire book.

I am, of course, mentioning the continual, unabating argument as it relates to Darius the Mede who we saw mentioned in Daniel 5:31 and now again in Daniel chapter 6. These scholars argue that outside of the Bible there is no such person known as King Darius within the timeframe of Daniel. As a result, they (including some who claim to be theologians themselves) go headlong into denying Scripture all because every historical detail isn’t mentioned. Sadly, we who believe in the authenticity of Scripture and who firmly declare it is the inerrant Word of God will always face those who challenge God’s authority. Yes. You read that right. If the book of Daniel is not sufficient for you, as written, then you are directly challenging God’s Word. I pray you will repent. God is the author. He wrote only what is sufficient for us to know. He did not detail every single piece of information that, in any event, does not affect His Word. Much of Scripture requires that we believe even though we do not have every piece of the jigsaw puzzle. Daniel himself knew less of the meaning about what he wrote in the latter part of the book that bears his name than what we know now. It was sufficient for him to accept only what God allowed him to know, why is not sufficient for us? The answer to that is a lack of faith, together with an attitude, that a person seems to think they know better than God Himself.

As far as Darius the Mede is concerned there are several suggestions as to the identity of this person. But if you want to know without any doubt who Darius was, you are going to be disappointed. All we can do at best is guess. It is better that we accept God’s Word as stated rather than fruitlessly waste our time on questioning who the person is or, worse, suggest the Bible is in error as some of these ego-minded scholars and theologians claim.

In an effort to put the many arguments “to bed” so to speak, let me make a few observations. These are not answers nor are they suggestions. They are merely observations. Ultimately, you have to decide whether what you are told by God in Daniel is sufficient for you to believe and to accept over those who argue otherwise.

Of the many different suggestions made of who this Darius was, the following have been put forward.

Some say Darius never even existed. They argue that because Daniel named a fictitious person (their view) that this proves the book was written much later. Their argument is that if it was written in the 6th century BC then Daniel would have accurately have named the correct king.

Others say Darius was Gubaru, the governor appointed over Babylon by Cyrus. Some distinguish Gubaru from Ugbaru, both of whom are called Gobryus in certain translations of the Nabonidus Chronicle.

Still others say that Darius was another name for Cyrus.

Here are a couple of observations.

First, while many argue that there was no such person by the name of Darius during the time period under discussion, there are no facts that prove there wasn’t.

A study of the Biblical text reveals that the name Darius is only used in connection with the first year (see Daniel 5:31; 9:1; 11:1).

Tiglath Pileser III (745 -727 BC) ruled as king of Babylon. But his name was his Assyrian throne name after murdering the royal family. He was formerly the governor of Kalhu and he was a general and known by his real name Pul. He took his throne name to honor two former kings of Assyria. He is mentioned in 2 Kings 15:19. In 1 Chronicles 5:26 he is mentioned again but is called Pul as well as Tiglath-Pileser.

His son, Ululayu, changed his name to his throne name Shalmaneser V during his own rule of Babylon. He is also named in Scripture by his throne name in 2Kings 17:3; 18:9.

The point here is that rulers used different names and that it was not uncommon in antiquity.

Finally, we see Scripture mention Darius as being made king (Daniel (9:1) and receiving the kingdom (Daniel 5:31) both of which are passive statements rather than active ones. Daniel 5:31 also reveals that Darius was about sixty-two years of age when he received the kingdom. This is approximately the same age that Cyrus was. In conclusion, may I suggest you accept the text we have in Scripture. God does not have it wrong. Whatever name was used by Darius or Cyrus or if there had been others who used such names but were co-regents or acted as king in the absence of the king, makes no difference to the content. Focus on what happened as we traverse the book of Daniel. We are watching Gentile world powers come and go, all of whom we do know in the history books of man. These lessons all lead to the prophecy of God’s eternal rule by His Son, Jesus Christ, and the timeline leading up to those events occurring in our or someone else’s future.