Then at Belshazzar’s command, Daniel was clothed in purple, a gold chain was placed around his neck, and he was proclaimed the third highest ruler in the kingdom. That very night Belshazzar, king of the Babylonians, was slain. Daniel 5:29-30
Daniel had already told the king that he wasn’t interested in his gifts, “You may keep your gifts for yourself and give your rewards to someone else” (verse 17). However, the king was true to his word and rewarded Daniel for interpreting the writing on the wall, even though it predicted the end of his reign.
Daniel’s blessings were short-lived. He was proclaimed third in the kingdom but hours later the king died, calling in to question his appointment since a foreign power took over the Babylonian kingdom. And who knows if he was allowed to keep the purple clothes or the gold chain?
Some spend their whole lives pursuing worldly gain without considering how short term these gains can be. Daniel’s promotion only lasted a matter of hours. Some pursue promotions that last years but will it be worth it?
Daniel knew how fragile and fading earthly rewards were. He wasn’t dependant on the king’s favour. He had spent most of his life in the king’s service and saw the king promote and dispose of those who pleased or displeased him. Daniel knew his true reward was with God. The last recorded word to Daniel was, “You will rest, and then at the end of the days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance” (12:13).
Likewise, we have an inheritance, “you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward” (Colossians 3:24). Our inheritance isn’t dependant on worldly promotions and achievements but rather on our relationship with Jesus Christ.