Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem…
It is always interesting to catch a glimpse of the private life of a distinguished man. A public career is seldom a revelation of character. History is constantly reversing the partial imperfect judgments of a passing generation: Heroes are destroyed or ennobled, as conduct is traced to its motives, and as motives discover character. A single passage of Holy Scripture conducts us to the private room of an Oriental statesman, and permits us to observe his daily life.
1. We see a statesman at prayer. Prayer is the best evidence of religion. Religion begins in the prayer of penitence, and it culminates in the prayer of "fellowship with the Father, and with his Son, Jesus Christ." Therefore we have a right to conclude that Daniel was a religious man. He had ever been loyal to God, and had ever enjoyed the restraints and encouragements of religion. He held firmly to the religion of his ancestors. He was not ashamed to be known as a godly man! His career was certainly a remarkable one. The religion of the Bible, as we see it in Daniel, is adapted to a busy life. Indeed, the concerns or occupations of a busy life demand the restraints and encouragements which this religion imposes. Besides religion places the present life in true relations to another the future life. Religion consoles us when we are disappointed, and cheers us when we are sad, and makes us conscious of God's help and blessing, and teaches us the great lesson that to be is better than to yet; to possess a noble character is the purpose of our existence. The offering of a noble character is the best tribute that a mortal can render to God, who creates, preserves, redeems, and sanctifies.
2. As we observe that the windows of Daniel's chamber are open toward Jerusalem. There the glory of God rested upon the mercy seat, which could be reached only through the appointed mediation of the High Priest. The redemptive idea was thus emphasized. Jerusalem was the city of redemption, because it had the temple. The pious emotions of devout men turned instinctively to Jerusalem, where the sacrifices were constantly offered. And through Christ we have access to the Father. His redemption is a constant appeal. The redemptive element in the divine character is always attractive. Men do not get very near to God, nor do they ever keep very near to him, unless they feel the constraint of redemptive love.
3. As we learn that Daniel is accustomed to kneel in his chamber three times each day, we are impressed with the necessity of frequent and stated seasons of prayer. Note the frequency and the regularity of this busy man's prayers. Have your stated seasons of prayer, and then believe that, at any hour, and in any place, you may cry unto God, and that he will hear you.
4. As we watch the enemies of Daniel, who rejoice that they have succeeded in their designs against him, we realise that the calm fulfilment of duty will ever meet with opposition, which God is able to over-rule. When Daniel knew that the work of his enemies was accomplished, what did he do? Moved calmly forward with the momentum of his devoted life, entering his chamber each day as usual, and praying there as he had been accustomed to pray. The pressure of an emergency was not to be the occasion of his fall. He was in God s hands. And the duty of prayer was evident. The conclusion of the whole matter is, to bring God consciously into life; to live with reference to his approval; to exercise a wise discrimination; to advance calmly but steadily; to be religious in the market place, and in the parlour, as well as in the sanctuary — such are a few of the lessons which we may carry away with us as we turn from the Chamber of Daniel, and go again to meet the toil and the conflict of a busy world.
(Henry M. Booth, D.D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime.
WEB: When Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house (now his windows were open in his room toward Jerusalem) and he kneeled on his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did before.