Not to be read in the Church during this time of the year.
Day 23 of the Blessed Coptic Month of Baramhat, may God make it always received, year after year, with reassurance and tranquility, while our sins after forgiven by the tender mercies of our God my fathers and brothers.
The Twenty-Third Day of the Blessed Month of Baramhat
Departure of the Great Prophet Daniel
On this day of the last year of king
Cyrus King of Babylon, the great righteous prophet Daniel Departed. This
prophet was from the tribe of Judah, and from the posterity of king David.
He was taken captive along with the Israelites by Nebuchadnezzar, king
of Babylon when he captured Jerusalem in the year 3398 of the world. He
stayed in babylon for seventy years. This prophet was very young in age,
however, he conducted himself in virtuous life, the Holy Spirit filled
him and he prophesied in Babylon. In the fourth year of the exile, Nebuchadnezzar
the king saw a dreadful dream and was extremely frightened. When he woke
up, he forgot the detail of his dream. He gathered all the wise men of
Babylon to tell the king his dream and its meaning. If they failed to tell
the king the dream and its interpretation they would all be killed, among
those also were Daniel and the three young men. Daniel and the young men
prayed to God with supplications to reveal to them the King's dream. God
answered their prayers and revealed to Daniel the dream and its interpretation.
Daniel went to the king and told him his dream and its interpretation.
He also told him about the kings that they are about to rule after him,
and what would happen to every one of them. Nebuchadnezzar was pleased
with Daniel, and fell on his face before him. The king presented Daniel
with great gifts and appointed him over the wise men of Babylon.
After some time had passed, Nebuchadnezzar
saw another dream, and Daniel interpreted the dream for him. Daniel told
the king that because of his arrogance, God would drive him from among
men, to dwell among the beasts of the wild and would eat grass like oxen
for seven years, and then God would bring him back to his kingdom, and
all that happened to Nebuchadnezzar. Daniel also explained to Belshazzar,
the son of Nebuchadnezzar, what the angel of the Lord had written on the
wall, when king Belshazzar drank wine in the gold and silver vessels of
the temple of the Lord. Daniel told the king: " O king, the Most High gave
Nebuchadnezzar your father, a kingdom and majesty, glory and honor... But
when his heart was lifted up in pride, he was deposed from his kingdom
and thrown from his throne into among the animals. And you, Belshazzar,
although you knew all what happened to your father, yet you also lifted
your heart against the Lord of heaven. They brought the vessels of the
house of the Lord before you, and you , your lords, wives and concubines
(mistresses) drank wine from these vessels... Then the fingers of a Hand
were send from the Lord, and His writing was written: "Mene, Mene, Tekel,
and Upharsin..which meant:
Mene means: God has numbered your days as a king and terminated
Tekel means: You have been weighed in the balances of the Lord
and was found wanting.
Upharsin means: your kingdom has been divided and given to the
Medes and Persians after you.
All of them came to pass and
the king was killed with all his lords and the kingdom of the Chaldeans
ended. Darius, king of Persia, ruled after him. There was an idol in Babylon
named "Bael" which king Darius worshiped. When Daniel was asked why he
did not worship it, Daniel answered: "I do not worship something that has
no life in it." The king said to him: "He is alive for he eats and drinks
every day." Daniel told him that could not be true. The king was angry
and wanted to check the matter for himself. He put the food and the drinks
in the temple of the idol and closed the door and sealed it. On the next
day, he went to the temple, opened the door and did not find the food nor
the drinks. But Daniel with the help of some of his companions, covered
the floor of the temple with fine ashes, found the feet tracks of those
who entered the temple by night and stole the food and drinks. The king
arrested the seventy priests of the idol Bael, together with their wives
and children and tortured them until they told him about the secret entrance
to the temple. The king then ordered them all to be killed and allowed
Daniel to destroy the idol and its altar. The people rebelled against the
king and asked him to deliver Daniel to their hands. The king surrendered
to their demands and Daniel was cast into the den of lions. However God
kept Daniel safe and destroyed his enemies. Daniel saw in a vision the
kingdoms and the kings to come after him to rule the world to the end of
time. He also saw the glory of God and the Divinity of Christ the Savior.
He prophesied about His coming and His death, the destruction of Jerusalem,
and the abolition of the sacrifice and the offerings, and all has been
fulfilled. This great prophet remained in Babylon for seventy years, then
departed in peace.
May His prayers be with us and Glory be to our God forever. Amen.
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