Thursday, September 24, 2015

Sanctifying Christ as Lord in the example of Daniel

READ Daniel 5-6

In 1 Peter 3:14-17 we have instructions from the Lord about how we are to live in a culture that is in opposition to our faith in Christ. “But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame. For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God' s will, than for doing evil.”

As you know, the NT tells us that the OT was written for our instruction and for an example to us in our Christian lives (1 Corinthians 10:6, 11). Well, in Daniel 6 we have a great example from the life of Daniel of being willing to suffer for our faith and also seeing those who oppose us “put to shame.” Daniel remains faithful to God despite the efforts of his opponents and for this he is thrown into the lions’ den, even though the king very much does not want him to be killed. Even this pagan king, Darius, knows that Daniel worships God and he hopes that God will save him from the lions. You know the end of the story. Daniel is saved and those who have schemed to have him killed are killed themselves in the den of lions.

For you and me this story stands as a challenge to live for Christ completely. We must “honor the Lord as holy” in our hearts and live in such a way that others will see the a true hope in us, just as Darius saw hope in Daniel and his God. People around us are watching, wanting to see if what we say with our mouths is shown in what we do with our lives.

Prayer: Father, we need your grace always to live in such a way that others will know we worship you. Help us to humbly recognize that we are always on display as trophies of your grace and how we live casts a reflection on you. Give us the strength and the courage to be faithful, just like Daniel.

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