Date of celebration: 17/12
The prophet Daniel is one of the four great prophets and lived at the end of the 7th to the beginning of the 6th century BC. century. He belonged to the tribe of Judah, was of royal lineage and was born in Ano Bethara.
While still a child, he was taken with his parents captive to Babylon. With the providence of Nebuchadnezzar, Daniel (whom the emperor renamed Belshazzar) with the three Jewish youths, Ananias, Azariah and Mishael, studied at the imperial court. Because their performance in studies was excellent, when they came of age the king gave them a high position in the state. In fact, Daniel had the gift of interpreting dreams and later prophesied the coming of the Son of man.
Once, however, Nebuchadnezzar made his own golden image and demanded that all the officials and the people worship it. Daniel was away on a mission. But it was the three children who did not worship the image. They immediately reported to the king. He told them that if they did not prostrate themselves, the furnace of fire awaits them. Then the three girls answered: “Listen, king, the heavenly God, whom we worship, is so powerful that he can bring us safe and sound from the furnace of fire and save us from your hands. But even if he still doesn’t do it, know that we don’t worship your gods and we don’t worship your image”.
Indeed, when they were thrown into the fire, the three children came out safe and sound. The same thing happened later with Daniel, when Darius threw him into the lions’ den, because he prayed, while the king had ordered for 30 days that no one should pray in particular.
Seeing the miracle, Darius kept Daniel in his court, where he remained and died in old age, probably in Susa.