When Daniel knew that the document had been signed, he went to his house where he had windows in his upper chamber open toward Jerusalem. He got down on his knees three times a day and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as he had done previously. Then these men came by agreement and found Daniel making petition and plea before his God.
For decades, he flawlessly served Babylon, the previous empire and its ruler, Nebuchadnezzar. Remarkably Daniel, a Jewish exile, not only survived when the Persians took over, he thrived. Yet King Cyrus, a.k.a. Darius, arrogant in his conquests, revealed a vulnerability to companions eager to discredit this relic.
They knew their king was prideful, and they knew Daniel was prayerful. Why not pit Daniel’s praying against their sovereign’s arrogance? “O King! Unite your new kingdom! All petitions and all prayers should be laid at your feet, and no where else. Let any disobedience mean death.” Quickly, foolishly, Cyrus agreed with the stroke of a pen, a blanket edict without any possible revocation.
More important to Daniel than a human ordinance was being in God’s presence three times a day. Scholar Joyce Baldwin (Daniel) notes,
“Windows…open toward Jerusalem…3 times a day [reflects] Psalm 55:17-18 where David testifies to the value of set habits of prayer. The rabbis attributed the practice to Moses.”
As he had done previously, this courageous leader determined to do continuously. Centuries later, Peter with John echoed, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge…” (Acts 4).
God Himself loved His daily appointments with his servant, so much so that He honored His servant’s commitment. Daniel slept peacefully with lions while a restless Cyrus tossed and turned with the consequences of reckless rule making.