Too many times in our society, people promote themselves and take credit whether it’s due or not. This is a prideful way of acting and one that was foreign to a remarkable man named Daniel.
We find Daniel in the second chapter of the book bearing his name facing certain death. King Nebuchadnezzar has ordered that all the wise men be put to death because they could not tell Nebuchadnezzar what he had been dreaming about or what it meant. Daniel petitions the captain of the guard to take him to the king. Upon his appearance, Daniel asks the king for some time and is granted it (Dan. 2:1-16).
Rather than depend upon his own abilities, Daniel recognizes that this is a God-sized request from the king and that he must depend upon God if the request is to be fulfilled. He relates the issue to his three friends and they all pray for God’s wisdom (Dan. 2:17-18).
Then, we come to the really great part. God grants their petition and the secrets of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream is revealed to Daniel. Daniel’s response reveals much of his great character. Let’s pick up the story in Daniel 2:19-23).
Daniel 2:19-23 Then was the secret revealed unto Daniel in a night vision. Then Daniel blessed the God of heaven. 20 Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his: 21 And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding: 22 He revealeth the deep and secret things: he knoweth what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him. 23 I thank thee, and praise thee, O thou God of my fathers, who hast given me wisdom and might, and hast made known unto me now what we desired of thee: for thou hast now made known unto us the king’s matter.
Daniel gives credit where credit is due. First, he praises God, Who is the source of all knowledge. He thanks God for answering their prayer and revealing the secret.
Second, Daniel gives credit to the prayers of his friends as well. In verse 23, notice the words “what we desired of thee” and “made known unto us the king’s matter”. His friends were praying just as hard has he was. Their lives and those of many others were on the line!
Daniel did what should become a habit with any true Christian. We must all recognize our utter dependence upon God. He is our source of power and wisdom through Jesus Christ. Without Christ, we can do nothing (John 15:5). We must also recognize our interdependence on other believers. We are all part of the Body of Christ and each member must perform the functions required for the advancement of the Body as a whole. And like Daniel, our actions have a bearing on nonbelievers as well.