Gabriel sent, but a demonic force withstood. It's war and we're in it (10:11-13). The march of the kings, 1,2,3. (chap. 11). Read the promise (12:1).
Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words. But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia (Dan. 10:12-13).
Daniel had been praying for some time. It is not clear to us exactly how long, although from the verse it could have been as many as 21 days. There could be a message in that to remind us that we should persevere in prayer. It seems in today's society that we have taken a different path. We might pray before our meals, or maybe in the morning or at bedtime, and we call that a complete prayer life. The Word of God is clear on how much and how often we should pray. Pray without ceasing (I Thes. 5:17).
However, there is much more happening in these verses than just a lesson in prayer. Prayer is an important part of what we see happening here, but it is only a part of it.
In reading the verses, we see that the message of the Lord is received by Daniel in answer to the extensive prayer that he has been praying. The things that the message reveals to Daniel over the course of these chapters is a great prophetic statement tied to the last days. Many people call Daniel a companion book to Revelation. This can definitely be said with no exaggeration.
An interesting thing that is mentioned in these two verses is the fact that the messenger was delayed with his message to Daniel. Daniel was told of a delay of 21 days because of a confrontation with someone or something called, the prince of the kingdom of Persia.
It could be said that this individual was just who the name implied. It may have been one of Persia's princes. Some might speculate it was Cyrus himself or his son, Cambyses. Of course, in saying that, we are saying that a human being did battle with the messenger of God and survived. In fact, not only did they survive, they held off God's messenger for 21 days. Hard to believe? No doubt.
Most commentators agree that what we have here is a case of spiritual warfare between the messenger of God and a fallen angel or demon tied to Persia. This demonic force was evidently trying to prevent this prophetic message from getting to Daniel. In the end, God and His angelic forces prevailed.
This scenario can be compared to our spiritual lives today. God seeks for us to prosper in Him. Our enemy the devil seeks to do anything to tear us down. He will do everything he can in his power to keep us from the Lord. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly (John 10:10).
It could be said that Daniel's perseverance in prayer kept the messenger on his way. If he had given up, who knows the outcome? When we feel under spiritual attack, we can be encouraged that forces of heaven, including the angels, will come to our defense.
For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds (II Cor. 10:4).
Thought for Today:
In running the race of life we need to run with patience and endurance.
As Him that liveth for ever (Dan. 12:7). As One of the Three expressed Persons of the Trinity, Jesus Christ always has been and always will be. Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily (Truly, truly), I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am (John 8:58). I am Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the Ending, saith the Lord (Jesus Christ), which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty (Rev. 1:8, also 4:8).
10:15 dumb, speechless; 11:11 choler, furious rage; 1:15 fenced cities, strongholds; 11:24 fattest, richest; forecast his devices, prepare his plans; 12:7 a time, times, and an half, 3-1/2 years.
Prayer Suggestion: Remember that one of the purposes of prayer is to glorify God (Ps. 115:1).
Memory Verse for the Week: Psalms 145:10