The assembly was now disbanded and broken up by royal authority. The masses began to move homeward with deep astonishment. The golden image was lost sight of, and the miraculous deliverance of the three Hebrews was the all-absorbing theme. The priests of Belus were utterly confounded. This mighty demonstration of the power of Jehovah soon spread throughout the land. The numerous Hebrew captives were treated with much more kindness; thousands of Chaldeans lost all confidence in their gods, and learned to pay their homage at the shrine of Jehovah.
Daniel returned from the court of Pharaoh, after having arranged all things to the satisfaction of his sovereign, in whose estimation he now stood higher than ever. The three brothers were held in awe and reverence by all, and the king communed with them freely on all subjects. Their lives were rendered comfortable, and, according to the late decree of the king, whosoever dared to speak disrespectfully of their God did so at his imminent peril.
The priests of Belus kept much within their temple, and whenever they appeared in public, it was with far greater modesty and much less arrogance. They were fast losing the confidence of the populace, and the worship of the gods was greatly disregarded. The great Rab Mag was universally admired, and his three companions stood above reproach.
For some years after that wonderful display of Divine power, as exhibited before vast thousands on the plains of Dura, Chaldea was comparatively free from wars.
The king contented himself with adding to the already magnificent grandeur of the seat of his empire. Thousands were continually employed in carrying out the schemes developed by his inventive mind, and no sooner was one mighty enterprise completed, than another project was brought forward. But the monarch’s vast ambition was not to be satisfied by the erection of massive walls and costly edifices. The fire of war and the love of conquest were not yet quenched in his soul. He had a strong passion for the din of battle.
Tyre was a strong and opulent city on the Mediterranean coast of Syria. It was one of the most celebrated maritime cities of antiquity, and remarkable for its power and grandeur. Hitherto, it had never been subject to any foreign power. It was built by the Sidonians, two hundred and forty years before the Temple of Jerusalem. For Sidon being taken by the Philistines of Askelon, many of its inhabitants made their escape in ships, and founded the city of Tyre; and for this reason we find it called in Isaiah, the “Daughter of Sidon.” But the daughter soon surpassed the mother in grandeur, riches, and power.