December 16, 2010

A Homily on the Steadfastness of Daniel the Prophet

By St. Nikolai Velimirovich

"And the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth" (Daniel 2:35).

Suffering, brethren, can weaken a man's character; however, luxury can weaken it even more. Daniel, the man of God, could not be weakened either by suffering or by luxury. In both instances he remained the same, and in both instances he was equally the messenger of the one Living God and a clairvoyant revealer of God's mysteries. He lived in royal luxury and then in a lions' den. In both instances, he remained unchanged: in royal luxury he fasted, and in the lions' den he did not hunger.

The Most-High God rewarded his faithful servant with the great gift of prophecy. The main subject of his prophecies is Christ the Lord. Christ will come and will destroy idol worship throughout the whole earth. He will fill the earth with Himself like no man clothed in the flesh has ever done. He is the One to Whom will be given dominion and glory and a Kingdom, that all people, nations and languages should serve Him (Daniel 7:14). Daniel, the great prophet of God, prophesied the time, the exact time, of the coming of the Lord Jesus into the world.

How we Christians must be ashamed before this Daniel! We see all the promises fulfilled in Christ, and yet we are lax in our faith and in our love for Christ. All was not revealed to Daniel as it is revealed to us who are baptized; nevertheless, he did not turn away from God, not once.

O Lord God of Daniel, strengthen us, give us repentance, and have mercy on us. To Thee be glory and praise forever. Amen.