The Power Behind the Throne

Geoffrey Cox

READ : Daniel 1:1-7

The Lord let King Jehoiakim of Judah fall into [Nebuchadnezzar’s] power. (v. 2)

What a contrast! Great King Jehoiakim of Judah, far greater King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, and, invisible but very active, the King of all kings, the real power behind all thrones—the Lord!

The book of Daniel is all about power—people who think they have power, and the God of real power who rules over the lives of kings and palace-masters. And at the bottom of the pile, four young men, Daniel and his friends, carried away as captives to Babylon and living as servants in Nebuchadnezzar’s palace.

Isaiah had warned a century earlier, “Trust God or bust!” Jehoiakim disobeyed, and lost his kingdom. In captivity, Daniel and his friends obey—and show God’s power, to his glory.

Because God is God, nothing can be greater than or have power over him. Because he is the Lord, our covenant God, we can rest confident that as we trust him, his power is working for our good in every aspect of our lives, no matter how powerless we may seem. Daniel’s story teaches us to trust in this Lord God, and to keep our eyes open to recognize him at work in our lives and in our world.


Lord, help us to recognize you at work, in judgment and in mercy, and to trust your power for good in our lives.