6:4 Consequently the supervisors and satraps were trying to find 1 some pretext against Daniel in connection with administrative matters. 2 But they were unable to find any such damaging evidence, 3 because he was trustworthy and guilty of no negligence or corruption. 4 6:5 So these men concluded, 5 “We won’t find any pretext against this man Daniel unless it is 6 in connection with the law of his God.”
6:6 So these supervisors and satraps came by collusion 7 to the king and said 8 to him, “O King Darius, live forever! 6:7 To all the supervisors of the kingdom, the prefects, satraps, counselors, and governors it seemed like a good idea for a royal edict to be issued and an interdict to be enforced. For the next thirty days anyone who prays 9 to any god or human other than you, O king, should be thrown into a den of lions. 6:8 Now let the king issue a written interdict 10 so that it cannot be altered, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be changed. 11 6:9 So King Darius issued the written interdict.
6:10 When Daniel realized 12 that a written decree had been issued, he entered his home, where the windows 13 in his upper room opened toward Jerusalem. 14 Three 15 times daily he was 16 kneeling 17 and offering prayers and thanks to his God just as he had been accustomed to do previously. 6:11 Then those officials who had gone to the king 18 came by collusion and found Daniel praying and asking for help before his God. 6:12 So they approached the king and said to him, 19 “Did you not issue an edict to the effect that for the next thirty days anyone who prays to any god or human other than to you, O king, would be thrown into a den of lions?” The king replied, “That is correct, 20 according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be changed.” 6:13 Then they said to the king, “Daniel, who is one of the captives 21 from Judah, pays no attention to you, O king, or to the edict that you issued. Three times daily he offers his prayer.” 22
6:14 When the king heard this, 23 he was very upset and began thinking about 24 how he might rescue Daniel. Until late afternoon 25 he was struggling to find a way to rescue him. 6:15 Then those men came by collusion to the king and 26 said to him, 27 “Recall, 28 O king, that it is a law of the Medes and Persians that no edict or decree that the king issues can be changed.” 6:16 So the king gave the order, 29 and Daniel was brought and thrown into a den 30 of lions. The king consoled 31 Daniel by saying, “Your God whom you continually serve will rescue you!” 6:17 Then a stone was brought and placed over the opening 32 to the den. The king sealed 33 it with his signet ring and with those 34 of his nobles so that nothing could be changed with regard to Daniel. 6:18 Then the king departed to his palace. But he spent the night without eating, and no diversions 35 were brought to him. He was unable to sleep. 36
6:19 In the morning, at the earliest sign of daylight, the king got up and rushed to the lions’ den. 6:20 As he approached the den, he called out to Daniel in a worried voice, 37 “Daniel, servant of the living God, was your God whom you continually serve able to rescue you from the lions?”
6:21 Then Daniel spoke to 38 the king, “O king, live forever! 6:22 My God sent his angel and closed the lions’ mouths so that they have not harmed me, because I was found to be innocent before him. Nor have I done any harm to you, O king.”
1 tn Aram “looking to find.”
2 tn Aram “from the side of the kingdom.”
3 tn Aram “pretext and corruption.”
4 tn Aram “no negligence or corruption was found in him.” The Greek version of Theodotion lacks the phrase “and no negligence or corruption was found in him.”
5 tn Aram “were saying.”
6 tn Aram “unless we find [it] against him.”
7 tn The Aramaic verb רְגַשׁ (rÿgash) occurs three times in this chapter (vv. 7, 12, 16). Its meaning is widely disputed by commentators, and the versions vary considerably in how they render the word. The suggestion that it means “to come thronging” (BDB 1112 s.v.; cf. NAB) seems inappropriate, since it is unlikely that subordinates would enter a royal court in such a reckless fashion. The ancient versions struggled with the word and are not in agreement in their understanding of its meaning. In this chapter the word apparently means to act in agreement with other parties in the pursuit of a duplicitous goal, namely the entrapment of Daniel. Cf. NIV, NCV “went as a group”; NRSV “conspired and came to the king.”
8 tn Aram “thus they were saying.”
9 tn Aram “prays a prayer.”
10 tn Aram “establish a written interdict and inscribe a written decree.”
11 tn Or “removed.”
12 tn Aram “knew.”
13 sn In later rabbinic thought this verse was sometimes cited as a proof text for the notion that one should pray only in a house with windows. See b. Berakhot 34b.
15 sn This is apparently the only specific mention in the OT of prayer being regularly offered three times a day. The practice was probably not unique to Daniel, however.
16 tc Read with several medieval Hebrew
17 tn Aram “kneeling on his knees” (so NASB).
sn No specific posture for offering prayers is prescribed in the OT. Kneeling, as here, and standing were both practiced.
18 tn Aram “those men”; the referent (the administrative officials who had earlier approached the king about the edict) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
19 tc The MT also has “about the edict of the king,” but this phrase is absent in the LXX and the Syriac. The present translation deletes the expression.
tn Aram “before the king.”
20 tn Aram “the word is true.”
21 tn Aram “from the sons of the captivity [of].”
22 tn Aram “prays his prayer.”
23 tn Aram “the word.”
24 tn Aram “placed his mind on.”
25 tn Aram “the entrances of the sun.”
26 tc Theodotion lacks the words “came by collusion to the king and.”
27 tn Aram “the king.”
28 tn Aram “know”; NAB “Keep in mind”; NASB “Recognize”; NIV, NCV “Remember.”
30 sn The den was perhaps a pit below ground level which could be safely observed from above.
31 tn Aram “answered and said [to Daniel].”
32 tn Aram “mouth.”
33 sn The purpose of the den being sealed was to prevent unauthorized tampering with the opening of the den. Any disturbance of the seal would immediately alert the officials to improper activity of this sort.
34 tn Aram “the signet rings.”
35 tn The meaning of Aramaic דַּחֲוָה (dakhavah) is a crux interpretum. Suggestions include “music,” “dancing girls,” “concubines,” “table,” “food” – all of which are uncertain. The translation employed here, suggested by earlier scholars, is deliberately vague. A number of recent English versions follow a similar approach with “entertainment” (e.g., NASB, NIV, NCV, TEV, CEV, NLT). On this word see further, HALOT 1849-50 s.v.; E. Vogt, Lexicon linguae aramaicae, 37.
36 tn Aram “his sleep fled from him.”
37 tn Aram “The king answered and said to Daniel.” This phrase has not been included in the translation for stylistic reasons; it is redundant in English.
38 tn Aram “with.”