Now Daniel so distinguished himself among the administrators and the satraps by his exceptional qualities that the king planned to set him over the whole kingdom. Daniel 6:3
One of the common characteristics of great leaders is resolve—the ability to decide firmly on a course of action. As a leader, do you act from a firm determination that the course you have chosen in the best one? And despite forces pulling you in a myriad of other directions and tangents, can you stay true to finish the race in front of you? Because having determination, resolve, may just bear a tremendous cost.
A stone was brought and placed over the mouth of the lion’s den, and the king sealed it with his own signet ring and with the rings of his nobles, so that Daniel’s situation might not be changed. Daniel 6:17
He was a distinguished manager, trusted by the king. So much so that that he was in the process of being placed in a role second only to the Sovereign. Daniel was not only honest and incorruptible, but also a man of faith. So his peers plotted against him, and created a path of legal plotting and scheming that landed Daniel in an untenable position. He would have to renounce his faith, or be thrown to the lions.
But Daniel had resolve. His resolve stood on the faith he had that God would not fail him. The Bible says in Daniel 6 that when the law was passed that said Daniel could not pray, and that the punishment was to be thrown to the lions, that he went up and prayed anyway. His resolve was to do what he knew was right, regardless of the consequences.
The also Bible says that after a night with the lions, Daniel was found alive. An angel had rescued him. It was a great test of faith, and Daniel was found faithful. His enemies got thrown to the lions instead, and Daniel prospered. The end of the story—or is it?
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
But did you ever stop to think, did Daniel go into the lion’s den thinking that he would live, or that he would die? The Bible doesn’t tell us, but we might guess that Daniel, if he was like any one of us, probably thought that he was going to be a hearty meal to a big cat that evening. And this is what makes Daniel remarkable. Because if he knew he would be rescued then the lion’s den was just a magic trick. But if he knew he would die, then it is his resolve that we can celebrate, and his faith that saved him.
Are there decisions that you would make, paths that you would follow, no matter what the cost? Where do you draw the line that would lead you to your own lion’s den? What principles do you stand on, that you are resolved to follow, even if the cost may be very high indeed?