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Daniel 6:14

ESV Then the king, when he heard these words, was much distressed and set his mind to deliver Daniel. And he labored till the sun went down to rescue him.
NIV When the king heard this, he was greatly distressed; he was determined to rescue Daniel and made every effort until sundown to save him.
NASB Then, as soon as the king heard this statement, he was deeply distressed, and set his mind on rescuing Daniel; and until sunset he kept exerting himself to save him.
CSB As soon as the king heard this, he was very displeased; he set his mind on rescuing Daniel and made every effort until sundown to deliver him.
NLT Hearing this, the king was deeply troubled, and he tried to think of a way to save Daniel. He spent the rest of the day looking for a way to get Daniel out of this predicament.
KJV Then the king, when he heard these words, was sore displeased with himself, and set his heart on Daniel to deliver him: and he laboured till the going down of the sun to deliver him.

What does Daniel 6:14 mean?

Darius, the king (Daniel 5:31) had a high regard for Daniel (Daniel 6:1–3). Yet he agreed to sign an unchangeable law prohibiting prayers other than those directed towards himself. He did not realize it was a jealous trap (Daniel 6:4–9). Daniel, as expected, refused to compromise his faith, and willingly violated the new law (Daniel 6:10–13). In that culture, the king was considered the same as the law, and the law could not be wrong. Therefore, certain royal decrees could not be overturned, even by the king who made them (Esther 8:8; Daniel 6:15).

The pagan king is just as trapped as Daniel, though he desperately seeks a way to prevent tragedy. He knew Daniel was trustworthy and honorable. This verse implies that Daniel's sentence cannot be delayed—it must be carried out that same day. Tossing the ugly situation around his mind until evening showed how the king tried to delay the inevitable. In this way, Darius foreshadows the New Testament figure of Pilate. Both men held an innocent person's fate in their hands (John 19:6), and both tried to avoid carrying out the death sentence (John 19:12). And both men failed to avoid sentencing an innocent man (John 19:16; Daniel 6:16).
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