Daniel was a man of prayer. Even though he was taken as a prisoner to Babylon as a teenager, he survived and excelled because of his relationship with God and his regularly sharing with God and listening to God in prayer. He lived through one pagan empire after another and was promoted to high office in those different governments.
- He was in a foreign country
- They changed his name after a pagan god or idol.
- He stayed true to Jehovah and never compromised his trust in the living God.
- Time after time, his faith in God made him valuable to the different empires he served.
- Interestingly enough, his prayer life almost cost him his life.
Here are some really valuable truths that I value from Daniel’s prayer life.
1. God hears us when we pray.
In Daniel 10 he tells about a vision he had of one from heaven. A striking figure appeared to him to share with him about the future. In verse 12, this person said to Daniel, “Don’t be afraid Daniel. Since the first day you began to pray for understanding and to humble yourself before God, your request has been heard from heaven. I have come in answer to your prayer.”
- His prayer had been heard right away.
2. We learn that there may well be Satanic/demonic interference with our receiving answers to prayer.
- The heavenly being told Daniel that he would have come sooner but “the spirit prince of the kingdom of Persia, hindered me for 21 days.” (10:13) It wasn’t until Michael, another angel, came to help that he was able to come to Daniel with answers.
- Paul, in Ephesians 6:12, wrote, “For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in heavenly places.”
- There are two realms — the kingdom of darkness headed up by Satan and his forces; the kingdom of light, headed up by Christ, the Son of God.
- Satan is doing his best to interfere with God’s work in our lives.
3. Prayer requires perseverance.
- Daniel had been in mourning for at least three weeks.
- Daniel, in 10:17, tells us he was exhausted. “… My strength is gone and I can hardly breathe.”
- I think he was weak from fasting (10:3) “… all that time I had eaten no rich food. No meat or wine crossed my lips, and I used no fragrant lotions until the three weeks had passed.”
- Prayer is a serious business and it is hard work.
4. Praise God Our Strength Will Come Back.
- A wonderful thing happened in Daniel’s encounter with the angel. At first, Daniel was so weak he couldn’t stand up.
- Then, in verses 18-19, he tells us “Then the one who looked like a man touched me again, and I felt strength returning. ‘Don’t be afraid’ he said, ‘for you are precious to God. Peace! Be encouraged! Be strong!’ As he spoke, these words to me, I suddenly felt stronger and said to him, ‘Please speak to me, my Lord for you have strengthened me’.”
- Listen to this – in Matthew 4:11, after Christ’s temptation in the wilderness by Satan, we read “Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus.”
(I wonder how often those special messengers from God come and minister to us and we are not aware of it?)
5. Lastly, we need to remember that one victory doesn’t mean the war is over.
- In Daniel 10:20 the angel said to Daniel — “Do you know why I have come? Soon I must return against the spirit prince of the kingdom of Persia, and after that the spirit prince of the kingdom of Greece will come.”
I wonder what kind of spirit prince Satan has assigned to watch over the United States of America? From my own study of spiritual warfare across the years, I believe each spirit prince has many others assigned to help him carry out the devil’s agenda. Let’s never forget when the Antichrist comes, he will be empowered by Satan to carry out the devil’s schemes. (2 Thess. 2:9)
As I close, my great concern is that many Christians are being deceived by the ‘deceiver.’ They do not realize how absolutely real the spiritual battle is. Folks, Satan is out to do us harm. There are many arrows in his bag. We need to be awake and alert because he is on the prowl. (2 Corinthians 4:4)
Paul in 2 Corinthians 10:5 admonishes us “taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.” I have good news for all of us. The Apostle John wrote, “for greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4)
We must never forget that our “real battles in life are not against flesh and blood.” (Ephesians 6:12)
Paul’s final instruction in Ephesians 6:10-18 has to do with prayer. “Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.
Most of our battles will be fought on our faces and knees before God in prayer.
There is victory in Jesus!
Footnote: One of my greatest collections of books is on spiritual warfare. A book that I would highly recommend was written by Chip Ingram and is titled “The Invisible War.” It is very readable. It would be well worth your investment of time and money.