About this book
As a young man, Daniel had been taken prisoner by the Babylonian army when Jerusalem was captured. The first half of this book (1—6) tells how he and three of his friends from Judah became important officials in the government at Babylon. They remained completely faithful to the Lord, even when it meant risking their lives. This half of the book concludes with Daniel serving in the government of the Medo-Persian empire after it had conquered Babylonia.
In the second half of the book (7—12) Daniel reports several visions that he had and how the meanings of those visions were explained to him by angels.
This book shows that God is in control of human events. He guides empires into power, but later he lets them be conquered by other empires. God also cares for individuals who are faithful to him, and some day he will finally bring justice to the world and provide victory for his people. Here is how Daniel spoke about this future time of victory:
I saw what looked like
a son of man
coming with the clouds of heaven,
and he was presented
to the Eternal God.
He was crowned king
and given power and glory,
so that all people
of every nation and race
would serve him.
He will rule for ever,
and his kingdom is eternal,
never to be destroyed.
A quick look at this book
1. Daniel and his three friends (1.1–21)
2. King Nebuchadnezzar's dream (2.1–49)
3. God rescues Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego (3.1–30)
4. Nebuchadnezzar loses his kingdom for seven years (4.1–37)
5. King Belshazzar and the writing on the wall (5.1–31)
6. God rescues Daniel from the pit of lions (6.1–28)
7. Daniel's vision of four beasts (7.1–28)
8. Daniel's vision of a ram and a goat (8.1–27)
9. Daniel prays for his people (9.1–27)
10. Daniel has a vision beside the River Tigris (10.1—12.13)