NOTE: As I'm looking at the rest of the year, I've realized that I'm going to run out of scripture blocks almost a month before the end,. So instead of breaking up the blocks into smaller chunks, I'm going to publish one post per week until the end of the year, instead of two. That will mean that one week will be a "question post" and the next week will include possible answers to consider. For the New Testament next yar, I'll need to do a better job of dividing the posts so that I don't run out early.
As young boys, Daniel and his friends Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were carried captive from Jerusalem to Babylon by King Nebuchadnezzar. They were selected as “well favored and skillful” children to serve in the King’s court.
READ Daniel 1:5, 8
This food and wine did not violate the Jewish dietary code, so why might the child Daniel be defiled by eating it?
Daniel asks to be able to perform a test and eat only legumes and vegetables for 10 days, to prove that he could be healthy without eating the King’s food – and the Lord supports him in his dedication.
READ Daniel 1:17, 20
What blessings did God give them for their faithfulness to Him?
The Fiery Furnace
The King creates a large gold idol and commands his court to come worship it at its dedication. When the music played, everyone was to fall down and worship the idol or be cast into a fiery furnace.
READ Daniel 3:12-18
What does the King’s statement “who is that God that can deliver you out of my hands” imply?
Nebuchadnezzar is the equivalent of the President of the USA or China or Russia today, so why are the 3 young men “not careful to answer” the King?
Why are they so bold in their statement: either our God will save us or if He chooses not to, we will die rather than serve your “gods”?
READ LoF 6:3-5
Why is “belief and supposition” not enough in a situation like this?
What is the lesson for us?
READ Daniel 3:22-28
Why did the 3 “fall down” into the midst of the fire after their guards had already been burned up trying to throw them into the flames?
What does it mean that the “form of the fourth man” was “like the Son of God”?
Why did the 3 have no “smell of fire” about them?
The Lion’s Den
Years later, Babylon has been defeated by Persia and King Darius is on the throne…
READ Daniel 6:3-5
Since Daniel’s performance at work was so strong, what was the only way these worldly men could destroy him?
READ Daniel 6:7, 10
What was the nature of the law they changed to ensnare Daniel?
READ Daniel 6:14-23
Why did Daniel pray with his windows open after he knew about the decree?
Why was the King not able to deliver Daniel?
Who was able to deliver Daniel?
How was Daniel delivered?
What is the symbolism in this story?
We are all acquainted with the story of Esther – how she saved her people, the Jews, by risking her life by coming to ask a favor of the King of Persia, her husband, and admitting to being a Jew herself.
READ Esther 1:10-12, 17-18, 20 and D&C 121:41-42, 46
How does the world’s way of treating women compare and contrast with the Lord’s way?
What did the Father gain by marrying the Goddess – did she bring anything to the relationship that He did not already have?
READ Esther 3:2
Why does Mordecai refuse to bow or reverence a man?
The King desires to reward one of his loyal subjects and asks Haman, his Grand Vizier, what he should do. Haman, thinking the king is set to reward him, asks for several audaciously extravagant gifts, including the King’s own clothes, crown and horse.
READ Esther 6:10
What does this verse teach us?
READ Esther 4:16
Why is fasting more effective than prayer alone?