When it was learned that the biggest football game of the 2011 season was scheduled to be played on Yom Kippur, the student government at the University of Texas petitioned school officials to change the date. They said it was unfair to make Jewish students choose between the classic football rivalry with Oklahoma and observing their most important and sacred holy day of the year. But the date was not changed. Even in societies where people have religious freedom, difficult choices are still required of every person of faith.
Daniel demonstrated the courage to obey God no matter what the consequences. When his political rivals set a trap to eliminate him from their path to power (Dan. 6:1-9), he didn’t challenge the law or complain that he had been wronged. “When Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days” (v.10).
Daniel didn’t know if God would save him from the lions’ den, but it didn’t matter. He chose to honor God in his life whatever the outcome. Like Daniel, we are free to choose to follow the Lord.