Daniel 10:2-3,12-13, 16-21 “In those days I Daniel was mourning three full weeks. I ate no pleasant bread, neither came flesh nor wine in my mouth, neither did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled. [notice Daniel was fasting and praying for an answer to his prayer] 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. And, behold, one like the similitude of the sons of men touched my lips: then I opened my mouth, and spake, and said unto him that stood before me, O my lord, by the vision my sorrows are turned upon me, and I have retained no strength. [a terrible vision, terrible news, a terrible announcement took all his strength] For how can the servant of this my lord talk with this my lord? for as for me, straightway there remained no strength in me, neither is there breath left in me. Then there came again and touched me one like the appearance of a man, and he strengthened me, [God through His angel strengthened Daniel supernaturally to carry the burden he was under] And said, O man greatly beloved, fear not: peace be unto thee, be strong, yea, be strong. And when he had spoken unto me, I was strengthened, and said, Let my lord speak; for thou hast strengthened me. [God will encourage us when we go to Him in prayer, even when we think there is no way I can be encouraged] Then said he, Knowest thou wherefore I come unto thee? and now will I return to fight with the prince of Persia: and when I am gone forth, lo, the prince of Grecia shall come. But I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth: and there is none that holdeth with me in these things, but Michael your prince.”
Keep praying and keep fighting for what you know to be right, there is an invisible war (10:10–21) going on all around us that we know nothing about. For three weeks Daniel received no answer to his prayer, but unknown to him, from the very instant he started praying, God started answering and sent one of His angels to give the answer to Daniel, but a dreadful and fearful spiritual battle was raging for those three weeks. Satan was doing his best to stop or delay this angel of the Lord from fulfilling his mission to give Daniel an answer to his prayer. Just because all may seem lost, just because we do not get the answer in the timeframe in which we expect, does not mean God and His angels are not working and are not actively fighting in the spiritual realm on our behalf.
We get the impression that the glorious man clothed in linen vanished from the scene and one of the angels, perhaps Gabriel, touched Daniel. The old prophet was on his face on the ground, but the ministry of the angel enabled him to lift himself to his hands and knees. Then the angel spoke to him, and this gave him the strength to stand upright. This is not unlike when Jesus was in the Garden and the angels ministered unto Him. This is the third time Daniel was touched by an angel (Dan. 8:18; 9:21; and see 10:16, 18–19). Perhaps we, unknown to us, have had and angel sent down from God to touch us and give us strength, when we had none left, and give us a will to carry on, when all our spirit was spent and depleted. Perhaps, in our greatest hour of need, the Lord may do what He did here with Daniel and send an angel to give us a touch, to help us face the unfaceable, to help us endure, the unendurable; just perhaps, if you are in such a situation right now, God has an angel on his way to give you that kind of touch too.
“Greatly beloved” – Daniel was addressed as “greatly beloved.” We recall that our Lord Jesus Christ was spoken of this way by the Father. Because we are His children, in and through Christ, the Father loves us as He loves His Son (John 17:23, 26). So, to the Lord in Heaven, we too are His “greatly beloved” as Daniel was. To God we are His “greatly beloved”, and a Father who loves His children that much, only wants what is best for us, and is working toward that end in all the situations in our life.
Daniel’s conversation with the angel reveals to us the important fact that there is an “invisible war” going on in the spiritual realm between the forces of evil and the forces of God. For three weeks, Daniel had been praying for wisdom to understand the visions he had already seen, but the answer to that prayer was delayed. Why would the Lord not immediately answer the petitions of His “greatly beloved?” Because “the prince of the kingdom of Persia”—an evil angel—had attacked the angel bearing the answer, probably Gabriel. Michael, the archangel then assisted Gabriel and together they won the battle. Maybe that delay in the answer to your pray, could be because angels, sent from God on your behalf, are caught up in a great spiritual battle, an “invisible war” with the forces of evil.
Well-meaning people may scoff at the idea of demonic forces and good and evil angels, but the fact remains that this is solid biblical theology. When Lucifer rebelled against God and was judged, some of the angels fell with him and became the demonic evil angels that oppose Christ and obey Satan (Revelation 12:7–12 – And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.)
According to Ephesians 6:10–18, Satan has a well-organized army of evil spirits that obey his every command. But through His sacrificial work on the cross, Christ defeated Satan and his army and we can claim that victory by faith. The believer’s responsibility is to put on the whole armor of God by faith and use the Word of God and believing prayer to oppose and defeat the wicked one. Paul told the Ephesian believers that the Christian’s battle was not against flesh and blood but against demonic forces in a spiritual realm that oppose the holy angels who always do God’s will. When a Christian prays, God will direct the armies of Heaven to fight on our behalf, even though we may know nothing about the battles that are being waged in this invisible war all around us. (II Kings 6:17 – And Elisha prayed, and said, Lord, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha.) What might you see that God has placed of His Heavenly host all around you on your behalf, what battle might you see, what evil force might you notice being blocked from reaching you by an angel from God, what might you see if you could catch a glimpse of the spiritual realm all around you? An incredible thought to contemplate.
Daniel had been involved in a cosmic spiritual conflict and had no idea it was even going on. The Lord was even using some of His highest angels to answer his prayers! This knowledge certainly puts our prayers, and what we think of them and how we consider them, on a whole other level of importance. The neglect of prayer is the reason why many churches and individual believers are so weak and defeated. Someone once said, “Much prayer, much power; no prayer, no power!” Jesus taught His disciples that the demonic forces could not be defeated except by prayer and fasting, the very activities that Daniel had been involved in for three weeks (Matthew 17:21– Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.).
Our Lord Jesus took seriously the reality of Satan and his demonic forces, and we should too. A cautious caveat needs to be added here though, this does not mean we should blame every headache, interruption, and delay in the answer to our prayers on demons, but it does mean we should respect Satan’s power because the Bible tells us that he “as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” I Peter 5:8.
Notice in Daniel chapter ten, twice the angels tell him, to “Fear not” (Daniel 10:12, 19). God does not want us to have a spirit of fear, we should put our trust in Him at all times and in all circumstances (II Timothy 1:7 – For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.) Notice it was the Lord through His angels that gave Daniel the strength he needed also notice what God tells us in Isaiah 41:10 “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.”
Finally, the angel made it clear that the battle was not yet over. The battle is not over till we see Jesus, so keep praying and keep fighting for what you know to be right in the Lord. As soon as he finished instructing Daniel, Gabriel would return to assist Michael in battling the prince of Persia and the prince of Grecia, two satanic evil angels who were opposing the plans of the Lord. Keep praying, keep having faith, one answer may come, but the “invisible war” could still be raging all around you, don’t let up, keep praying, keep having faith, keep fighting and keep living for the Lord. Do not let your guard down to the Devil. Think of all the things in your life that have already been changed because you and others have fervently prayed.
A delay does not mean that God has not already dispatched His angels on your behalf. A delay does not mean that God is not working in the situation. Keep praying, fast and pray when needed, keep having faith. God will give you strength when you do not have one drop of it left. God will encourage you when you think it is impossible to ever be encouraged again. God and His angels never quit, honor the Lords commitment to you and keep pressing forward in your life for Him. Take the next step, keep on bended knee and trust it all to Him. (II Corinthians 10:4-5 – (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;)