In Daniel 6, we find Daniel, advanced in years (probably in his 80s) still serving–but now in a new empire.
The story in Daniel 6, Daniel and the Lion's den, is a story that is intended to cause the original readers and us to understand that
God’s plan for His people will be accomplished
therefore, His people should remain faithful so that God can honor them
they must also trust as they wait for God to establish His promised kingdom (ch 2 and 7)
Small Group Questions
Engage—connect with each other
1. Agree or Disagree
New believers or those who have seen a great transformation in their lives—seem to have a greater passion/zeal for the Lord, than other Christians.
Why do we lose that “excitement?”
2. What is the difference between “zeal” and “excitement?”
3. Is there a correlation between “zeal” and commitment?
Examine and Explore—what the passage says before you decide what it means, then begin to discuss the implications of this passage
4. What do you notice about the difference between the character traits of Daniel described in 6:2-3 and those in 6:4-5? What do you notice about his intentionality?
5. Remembering that Daniel is advanced in years (probably in his 80’s), what strikes you about his character and influence? Add to the previous verses, 6:10, 22-23.
Encounter—read God’s Word to get to know Him
6. In this story, as in several others in Daniel, some of the most profound descriptions of God come through the mouth of pagan king (6:26-27). What attributes, essence and character traits are highlighted in this story?
Embrace—What is the one thing you need to know or do? What is your next step in response to this passage?
7. Implications, Application and Personalization
Daniel demonstrates, unquestioning obedience, commitment and conviction with zeal or passion for God.
Great characteristics, often associated with 1st Generation Christians:
Conviction and Commitment
Perspective—God First (you see it in their checkbook and calendar)
Focus: The present and the future
Too often, there is a loss of passion or zeal in the those who are 2nd Generation Christians:
Conviction but no passion
Leads to compromise
Perspective—God and me (you see it in their checkbook and calendar)
Focus: The past
By the third 3rd Generation, it is common to see…
No conviction, no passion
Leads to conflict
Perspective—Self (you see it in their checkbook and calendar)
Focus: The present and future personal interests
So what can we learn from Daniel, conviction and zeal?
Pass on your Passion
Model to others
Possess your own Passion
Begin the Process
Where are you in this journey?