And now, O Lord our God, that hast brought thy people forth out of the land of Egypt - In former days. The reference to this shows that it is proper to use “arguments” before God when we plead with him (compare the notes at Job 23:4); that is, to suggest considerations or reasons why the prayer should be granted. Those reasons must be, of course, such as will occur to our own minds as sufficient to make it proper for God to bestow the blessing, and when they are presented before him, it must be with submission to his higher view of the subject. The arguments which it is proper to urge are those derived from the Divine mercy and faithfulness; from the promises of God; from his former dealings with his people; from our sins and misery; from the great sacrifice made for sin; from the desirableness that his name should be glorified. Here Daniel properly refers to the former Divine interposition in favor of the Hebrew people, and he pleads the fact that God had delivered them from Egypt as a reason why he should now interpose and save them. The strength of this argument may be supposed to consist in such things as the following:
(a) in the fact that there was as much reason for interposing now as there was then;
(b) in the fact that his interposing then might be considered as a proof that he intended to be regarded as their protector, and to defend them as his people;
(c) in the fact that he who had evinced such mighty power at that time must be able to interpose and save them now, etc.
And hast gotten thee renown - Margin, “made thee a name.” So the Hebrew. The idea is, that that great event had been the means of making him known as a faithful God, and a God able to deliver. As he was thus known, Daniel prayed that he would again interpose, and would now show that he was as able to deliver his people as in former times.
As at this day - That is, as God was then regarded. The remembrance of his interposition had been diffused abroad, and had been transmitted from age to age.
We have sinned - This turn in the thought shows how deeply the idea of their sinfulness pressed upon the mind of Daniel. The natural and obvious course of thought would have been, that, as God had interposed when his people were delivered from Egyptian bondage, he would now again interpose; but instead of that, the mind of Daniel is overwhelmed with the thought that they had sinned grievously against one who had shown that he was a God so great and glorious, and who had laid them under such obligations to love and serve him.
The prophet now pleads the honor of the Lordâs name as a reason why he desires that his petition should be granted. He refers to the fact of their deliverance from Egypt, and the great renown that had accrued to the Lordâs name for all his wonderful works manifested among them. All this would be lost, should he now abandon them to perish. Moses used the same argument in pleading for Israel. Numbers 14. Not that God is moved with motives of ambition and vainglory; but when his people are jealous for the honor of his name, when they evince their love for him by pleading with him to work, not for their own personal benefit, but for his own glory, that his name may not be reproached and blasphemed among the heathen, this is acceptable with him. Daniel then intercedes for the city of Jerusalem, called by Godâs name, and his holy mountain, for which he has had such love, and beseeches him, for his merciesâ sake, to let his anger be turned away. Finally, his mind centers upon the holy sanctuary, Godâs own dwelling-place upon this earth, and he pleads that its desolations may be repaired.DAR 186.2
Daniel understood the seventy years of captivity to be near their termination. From his allusion to the sanctuary, it is evident that he so far misunderstood the important vision given him in chapter 8, as to suppose that the 2300 days, at the termination of which the sanctuary was to be cleansed, expired at the same time. This misapprehension was at once corrected, when the angel came to give him further instruction in answer to his prayer, the narration of which is next given.DAR 187.1
We do not value as we should the power and efficacy of prayer. “The Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered” (Romans 8:26). God desires us to come to Him in prayer, that He may enlighten our minds. He alone can give clear conceptions of truth. He alone can soften and subdue the heart. He can quicken the understanding to discern truth from error. He can establish the wavering mind and give it a knowledge and a faith that will endure the test. Pray, then; pray without ceasing. The Lord who heard Daniel's prayer will hear yours if you will approach Him as Daniel did. HP 75.3Read in context »
Let men be connected with God's work who will represent His character. They may have much to learn in regard to business management; but if they pray to God as did Daniel, if with true contrition of mind they seek that wisdom which comes from above, the Lord will give them an understanding heart. Read carefully and prayerfully the third chapter of James, especially verses 13-18. The whole chapter is an eye-opener, if men wish to open their eyes.—Letter 55, 1895. PM 127.2Read in context »
The man of sin has instituted a false sabbath, and the professed Christian world has adopted this child of the papacy, refusing to obey God. Thus Satan leads men and women in a direction opposite to the city of refuge; and by the multitudes who follow him, it is demonstrated that Adam and Eve are not the only ones who have accepted the words of the wily foe. 4BC 1172.1
The enemy of all good has turned the signpost round, so that it points to the path of disobedience as the path of happiness. He has insulted Jehovah by refusing to obey a “Thus saith the Lord.” He has thought to change times and laws (The Review and Herald, April 17, 1900). 4BC 1172.2Read in context »
The prophet Daniel was drawing very near to God when he was seeking Him with confession and humiliation of soul. He did not try to excuse himself or his people, but acknowledged the full extent of their transgression. In their behalf he confessed sins of which he himself was not guilty, and besought the mercy of God, that he might bring his brethren to see their sins.... TMK 238.4Read in context »