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Daniel 1:10

10. And the prince of the eunuchs and unto Daniel, I fear my lord the king, who hath appointed your meat and your drink: for why should he see your faces worse liking than the children which are of your sort? then shall ye make me endanger my head to the king.

10. Et dixit praefectus eunuchorum Danieli, Timeo ego Dominum meum regem qui, constituit 8585     For מנה, minneh, which is “to relate,” means to “ordain,” “appoint” — Calvin. cibum vestrum, et potus vestros, quare videbit facies vestros tristes, 8686     Or emaciated, or austere, or sullen: for, it is derived from the word זעף, zegneph, which signifies “to be angry,” and hence, by a change of object, faces are called emaciated, austere, of sullen. — Calvin. prae pueris, qui sunt vobis similes, 8787     Others translate “equals,’ “those who are like you:” this may be the sense, because they are now like you, but will afterwards become fat and stout while you are lean. This change will endanger me.Calvin. et obnoxium 8888     For כוב, chob, in Hebrew is “debtor:” whence this word is derived: signifying to “render subject.” — Calvin. reddetis caput meum regi.

 

Daniel suffers a repulse from the prefect; and truly, as I have lately remarked, his humanity is not praised through his listening to Daniel’s wish and prayer; but through his burying in silence whatever might have brought him into difficulties. And his friendship appears in this; for although he denies his request, yet he does so mildly and civilly, as if he had said he would willingly grant it unless he had feared the king’s anger. This, therefore, is the meaning, — the prefect, though he did not dare to comply with Daniel’s request, yet treated both him and his companions kindly by not endangering their lives. He says, — he was afraid of the king who had ordered the food He is not to be blamed as if he feared man more than the living God, for he could not have any knowledge of God. Although he may have been persuaded that Daniel made his request in the earnest, pursuit of piety, yet he did not think himself authorized to comply; for he thought the Jews had their peculiar method of worship, but meanwhile he clung entirely to the religion of Babylon. Just as many profane persons now think us quite right in casting away superstitions, but yet they slumber in this error, — it is lawful for themselves to live in the ancient manner, since they were so brought up and instructed by their forefathers. Hence they use rites which they allow to be disapproved by us. So also this prefect might feel rightly concerning Daniel and his associates; at the same time he was not so touched by them as to desire to learn the difference between the two religions. Therefore he simply excuses himself, as not being at liberty to grant Daniel’s request, since this would endanger his own head with the king. It now follows —


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