Darius has been previously referred to as a Persian. It is not certain if Darius, the Mede is the same as the Persian, but the possibility does exist since the Medes and Persians were a consolidated power. He reorganized the government to allow three governors to be over one hundred twenty officials called satraps.
Daniel was appointed to one of the positions as governor. He distinguished himself to the extent that the king was considering appointing him over all of them. However, during that same time frame, there was animosity against the Jews who had remained in the former Babylon. Jealousy in the other officials arose because of the favorable treatment of this “captive” from Judah. Knowing Daniel’s faithfulness to worship his God, they persuaded the king to write an unalterable decree forbidding anyone from making a petition to any other god or man except the king for thirty days. The punishment for breaking that decree would be certain death in the den of lions.
Faithful Daniel would rather face death than to turn his back on God. After they had discovered him worshipping God, the men reported the breach of the king’s decree to Darius and reminded him of the unalterable consequences of Daniel’s transgression. The heathen king assured Daniel that his God would save him as he gave the order to place him in the den with the lions. After a sleepless night of fasting, the remorseful king was relieved when he saw that Daniel had been unharmed, as an angel of God had shut the mouths of the lions. He commanded that Daniel’s accusers along with their wives and children be cast into the den where they were promptly crushed by the vicious animals.
The king wrote another decree commanding that everyone in his kingdom must tremble and fear before the God of Daniel.