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Daniel 6

Daniel in the Pit of Lions

Darius decided to appoint a hundred and twenty governors to hold office throughout his empire. In addition, he chose Daniel and two others to supervise the governors and to look after the king's interests. Daniel soon showed that he could do better work than the other supervisors or the governors. Because he was so outstanding, the king considered putting him in charge of the whole empire. Then the other supervisors and the governors tried to find something wrong with the way Daniel administered the empire, but they couldn't, because Daniel was reliable and did not do anything wrong or dishonest. They said to each other, “We are not going to find anything of which to accuse Daniel unless it is something in connection with his religion.”

So they went to see the king and said, “King Darius, may Your Majesty live forever! All of us who administer your empire—the supervisors, the governors, the lieutenant governors, and the other officials—have agreed that Your Majesty should issue an order and enforce it strictly. Give orders that for thirty days no one be permitted to request anything from any god or from any human being except from Your Majesty. Anyone who violates this order is to be thrown into a pit filled with lions. So let Your Majesty issue this order and sign it, and it will be in force, a law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be changed.” And so King Darius signed the order. 10 When Daniel learned that the order had been signed, he went home. In an upstairs room of his house there were windows that faced toward Jerusalem. There, just as he had always done, he knelt down at the open windows and prayed to God three times a day.

11 When Daniel's enemies observed him praying to God, 12 all of them went together to the king to accuse Daniel. They said, “Your Majesty, you signed an order that for the next thirty days anyone who requested anything from any god or from any human being except you, would be thrown into a pit filled with lions.”

The king replied, “Yes, that is a strict order, a law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be changed.”

13 Then they said to the king, “Daniel, one of the exiles from Judah, does not respect Your Majesty or obey the order you issued. He prays regularly three times a day.”

14 When the king heard this, he was upset and did his best to find some way to rescue Daniel. He kept trying until sunset. 15 Then Daniel's enemies came back to the king and said to him, “Your Majesty knows that according to the laws of the Medes and Persians no order which the king issues can be changed.”

16 (A)So the king gave orders for Daniel to be taken and thrown into the pit filled with lions. He said to Daniel, “May your God, whom you serve so loyally, rescue you.” 17 A stone was put over the mouth of the pit, and the king placed his own royal seal and the seal of his noblemen on the stone, so that no one could rescue Daniel. 18 Then the king returned to the palace and spent a sleepless night, without food or any form of entertainment.

19 At dawn the king got up and hurried to the pit. 20 When he got there, he called out anxiously, “Daniel, servant of the living God! Was the God you serve so loyally able to save you from the lions?”

21 Daniel answered, “May Your Majesty live forever! 22 (B)God sent his angel to shut the mouths of the lions so that they would not hurt me. He did this because he knew that I was innocent and because I have not wronged you, Your Majesty.”

23 The king was overjoyed and gave orders for Daniel to be pulled up out of the pit. So they pulled him up and saw that he had not been hurt at all, for he trusted God. 24 Then the king gave orders to arrest all those who had accused Daniel, and he had them thrown, together with their wives and children, into the pit filled with lions. Before they even reached the bottom of the pit, the lions pounced on them and broke all their bones.

25 Then King Darius wrote to the people of all nations, races, and languages on earth:

“Greetings! 26 I command that throughout my empire everyone should fear and respect Daniel's God.

“He is a living God,
and he will rule forever.
His kingdom will never be destroyed,
and his power will never come to an end.
27 He saves and rescues;
he performs wonders and miracles
in heaven and on earth.
He saved Daniel from being killed by the lions.”

28 Daniel prospered during the reign of Darius and the reign of Cyrus the Persian.

Good News Translation (GNT)

Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

2 Peter 3

The Promise of the Lord's Coming

My dear friends, this is now the second letter I have written you. In both letters I have tried to arouse pure thoughts in your minds by reminding you of these things. I want you to remember the words that were spoken long ago by the holy prophets, and the command from the Lord and Savior which was given you by your apostles. (A)First of all, you must understand that in the last days some people will appear whose lives are controlled by their own lusts. They will make fun of you and will ask, “He promised to come, didn't he? Where is he? Our ancestors have already died, but everything is still the same as it was since the creation of the world!” (B)They purposely ignore the fact that long ago God gave a command, and the heavens and earth were created. The earth was formed out of water and by water, (C)and it was also by water, the water of the flood, that the old world was destroyed. But the heavens and the earth that now exist are being preserved by the same command of God, in order to be destroyed by fire. They are being kept for the day when godless people will be judged and destroyed.

(D)But do not forget one thing, my dear friends! There is no difference in the Lord's sight between one day and a thousand years; to him the two are the same. The Lord is not slow to do what he has promised, as some think. Instead, he is patient with you, because he does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants all to turn away from their sins.

10 (E)But the Day of the Lord will come like a thief. On that Day the heavens will disappear with a shrill noise, the heavenly bodies will burn up and be destroyed, and the earth with everything in it will vanish.[a] 11 Since all these things will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people should you be? Your lives should be holy and dedicated to God, 12 as you wait for the Day of God and do your best to make it come soon—the Day when the heavens will burn up and be destroyed, and the heavenly bodies will be melted by the heat. 13 (F)But we wait for what God has promised: new heavens and a new earth, where righteousness will be at home.

14 And so, my friends, as you wait for that Day, do your best to be pure and faultless in God's sight and to be at peace with him. 15 Look on our Lord's patience as the opportunity he is giving you to be saved, just as our dear friend Paul wrote to you, using the wisdom that God gave him. 16 This is what he says in all his letters when he writes on the subject. There are some difficult things in his letters which ignorant and unstable people explain falsely, as they do with other passages of the Scriptures. So they bring on their own destruction.

17 But you, my friends, already know this. Be on your guard, then, so that you will not be led away by the errors of lawless people and fall from your safe position. 18 But continue to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory, now and forever! Amen.


  1. 2 Peter 3:10 vanish; some manuscripts have be found; others have be burned up; one has be found destroyed.
Good News Translation (GNT)

Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Psalm 119:129-152

Desire to Obey the Law of the Lord

129 Your teachings are wonderful;
I obey them with all my heart.
130 The explanation of your teachings gives light
and brings wisdom to the ignorant.
131 In my desire for your commands
I pant with open mouth.
132 Turn to me and have mercy on me
as you do on all those who love you.
133 As you have promised, keep me from falling;
don't let me be overcome by evil.
134 Save me from those who oppress me,
so that I may obey your commands.
135 Bless me with your presence
and teach me your laws.
136 My tears pour down like a river,
because people do not obey your law.

The Justice of the Law of the Lord

137 You are righteous, Lord,
and your laws are just.
138 The rules that you have given
are completely fair and right.
139 My anger burns in me like a fire,
because my enemies disregard your commands.
140 How certain your promise is!
How I love it!
141 I am unimportant and despised,
but I do not neglect your teachings.
142 Your righteousness will last forever,
and your law is always true.
143 I am filled with trouble and anxiety,
but your commandments bring me joy.
144 Your instructions are always just;
give me understanding, and I shall live.

A Prayer for Deliverance

145 With all my heart I call to you;
answer me, Lord, and I will obey your commands!
146 I call to you;
save me, and I will keep your laws.
147 Before sunrise I call to you for help;
I place my hope in your promise.
148 All night long I lie awake,
to meditate on your instructions.
149 Because your love is constant, hear me, O Lord;
show your mercy, and preserve my life!
150 My cruel persecutors are coming closer,
people who never keep your law.
151 But you are near to me, Lord,
and all your commands are permanent.
152 Long ago I learned about your instructions;
you made them to last forever.

Good News Translation (GNT)

Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

Proverbs 28:21-22

21 Prejudice is wrong. But some judges will do wrong to get even the smallest bribe.

22 Selfish people are in such a hurry to get rich that they do not know when poverty is about to strike.

Good News Translation (GNT)

Copyright © 1992 by American Bible Society

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