Learn From Daniel 1!
Daniel 1:8 – But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.
Hello readers, thanks for reading today. I’m going to go through Daniel 1 today, recently I was reading Daniel 1, he’s one of my favorite characters in the Bible, and I got quite a lot out of it, hopefully I can do it some justice with this blog. Read Daniel 1 yourself, let God speak to you through his word. There’s a huge lesson in Daniel’s life, well there are many, but today we are going to see how you be different, how you can stand out and stand for something, how you can make a difference… and it’s all to do with refusing what the world offers and forces you to live on and stick with God’s word. In a world where we all find excuses and justifications for our sin… look at Daniel. He’d gotten a raw deal, through no fault of his own here he was taken away from his home land at a young age. Daniel had every reason to be angry at God, and furthermore he was a eunuch, he’d been born at a time where Israel and Judah had been warned to repent an innumerable amount of times, and finally the Babylonians had come in and ripped the disobedient nation apart. He was just a boy, and he was castrated, think about what that means.
In verse 1, we read that Nebuchadnezzar came unto Jerusalem and laid siege to it. You know, this exact thing had been prophesied of time and time again and noone believed, and they refused to repent and change their ways. They thought God’s word was a joke. It’ll never happen! They instead listened to the many false prophets that were around during that day, who said ah it’ll be fine. So in verse 1 we see that God’s word was proved true once again. How is it that we can hear and know God’s word, yet not believe it… or rather not live like it’ true even when we know it’s true? It’s a bit like us returning to our sin daily, we know what God has said, but we still choose disobedience. We can tend to think we’re special, we’re the exempt from what God has said, but no, this was God’s own nation, it was God who gave them into Nebuchadnezzar’s hand. We can read it and not get a sense of what Nebuchadnezzar’s army coming really means. It meant death, destruction, burning, pain, rape, looting, families being broken up, lives being taken and destroyed forever.
Well after Nebuchadnezzar conquered Jerusalem, he told the master of his eunuchs to bring certain of the children of Israel back to Babylon. Take their best boys and bring them back to retrain and relearn them, bring them back to Babylon to use them to further their kingdom. They’d train them up and use their skills and ability to serve Babylon. You know, this is what Satan does, he wants to use God’s children in his service. And there are so many Christians out there who are serving Satan. Today we see the strategy of Satan, and how this world will seek to dictate how you think and speak and act and do in life. They took these boys… and they put them on the Babylon diet. Maybe you’re on a Babylonian diet today, and maybe you’re a Babylonian because your whole life you’ve fed on what Babylon has told you to feed on.
Their plan was to brainwash these children to think Chaldean, speak Chaldean, and do Chaldean. Sound like today? It was an education program. The main reason families and nations have lost their children to Nebuchadnezzar is they’ve let him educate their kids. Hitler took Germany’s youth… and the public education system is a graveyard for many families and children. You give your kids to the world to raise, don’t be surprised when they’ve gone from Hebrews to Babylonians. We’ve let the Babylonian influence into churches, into the home and now our kids speak Chaldean. Where there was godly thinking, understanding, desires, lifestyle… now it’s all Chaldean. We have given our children to the Babylonians to raise, and then we’re surprised when they talk Babylonian, think Babylonian, and live Babylonian.
As an essential part of reeducating these Hebrews boys, the king appointed them a daily provision of the king’s meat and his wine which he drank. They’d eat and drink what his diet for years, and finally they’d be ready to stand before him. You spend a life feeding your sinful flesh, you’re going to reap what you sow. We see a blueprint in Daniel for how Satan and this world is going to ruin children, children who have all the ability and potential in the world for God, this is how he’s going to use all that talent and skill to serve him. This world sure has a prescribed diet for us. It’s tv, it’s music, it’s entertainment, it’s past times and pleasures… and you keep on consuming them… don’t be surprised when you’re nourished by this world that you end up a worldling. How many people changed their diet from God’s word to what the world offers. The education isn’t out of God’s word, instead the world is educating us how to think, act and do.
We have to honestly have a look at what we have an appetite for. Many of the Hebrew boys were like hey this is great. This is king’s food! It was a lot more exciting than pulse and water! Meat and wine is far better than pulse and water. How many people have departed from God’s word for what appealed to their fleshly desires, their fleshly appetite. We all have an appetite, and an enormous appetite at that, for sin, for lust, for pride, for pleasure, for wickedness… we have an appetite for what the world has to offer and we live a life consuming upon that. We have to recognize that.
In this chapter you’re going to see a distinction between some Hebrew children and the rest of Babylon. There were four boys who didn’t eat and drink what the king appointed them. They said no, we’re not doing this. People wanted them to eat and drink what they were told to, this required courage and faith to refuse. This world wants you to be like them, they want you to drink, sleep around, do drugs and be cool with them, fall into line Daniel! It was a daily provision that the king had appointed them. Every day we have a fight on our hands, Satan is going to meet you every day wanting to make you his. We have a relentless enemy, and we always have our flesh to deal with until we die.
It’s not enough to be what verse 4 says. They had picked out all the best children of Israel, yet only four of them would end up being different from the rest. See, you can have skill, talent, gifts, ability, potential, you can be as sharp as a needle and as bright as star… but that’s not enough. The Hebrew children had all these attributes, yet they ended up eating the kings meat and drinking the kings drink… and they turned into perfect little Chaldeans. They didn’t stand in Babylon. They were taught how to think and speak and act… and that’s what they became.
What separated Daniel from everyone else was something inside him. He had a different spirit. We read that he purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the kings meat or wine. See, for all the religion that is going around, nothing can put in you a deep love for God, a heart that wants to mind the Lord first in your life. We wouldn’t struggle with sin so much if we truly loved the Lord Jesus Christ. What makes Christianity tick is the heart, but lack of a new heart means that it’ll just become dead religion. If you really love God, if you really have a heart to obey him and follow him… the rest will follow. So often we pull against God’s word, and gladly accept the world’s meat and drink… it’s because our heart is far from God. It’s not enough to be Daniel 1:4, it’s gotta be in your heart.
There was a lot of pressure on Daniel and his friends to eat and drink with the rest and like the rest. Everyone else was doing it. People cave in because that’s what everyone else is doing. Peer pressure, acceptance and the such like cause many people to fold in Babylon. At the end of this chapter, the Bible would say of Daniel and his three friends… that there was none like them in the whole realm. They were different because they refused, they purposed, they chose God’s word. This world is defiled by it’s sin and rebellion, Daniel and his friends decided not to join in with that. They couldn’t control all that had happened to them, but this they could. You might not have chosen circumstances and situations in life, but you can choose to obey God’s word in them.
Daniel and his friends weren’t sustained by the king’s meat and drink, they were sustained by something completely different, something that noone else was on. You see, when you’ve got God’s word, you’re being sustained by something a whole lot more wholesome, a whole lot more sustaining than what the world has to offer. You’re being sustained by something that’s going to make you different, and make you be a difference. So many Christians today are indistinguishable from this world, spiritual Babylon, because they’re just like the world, they’re on it’s diet, they speak like it, they think like it, they act like it, they live like it… Babylonians tend to behave like Babylonians. You can be like the rest, you can be like everyone else… or there can be none like you. So often we choose Babylon, because we want to be accepted, we bow to peer pressure, we want to be like everyone else.
Daniel refused to be a prisoner of his peers. So many people are prisoners of their peer group. They don’t get saved because of their friends, they won’t’ speak about God’s word or profess Jesus Christ because of that pressure not to. It’s unpopular, it’s uncool, it’s a shame. Daniel wasn’t, and the thing is, he stuck with godly friends, not worldly friends. His three friends were those who also purposed not to defile themselves. Daniel would live in Babylon his whole life, but he was never a Babylonian, he was always distinct. He wouldn’t be at Belshazzar’s party years later, they had to go and fetch him and bring him in to read the writing on the wall. He wasn’t part of the whole sinful deal. It wasn’t him being better than everyone else, it was that he wanted to obey God’s word in his whole life, he chose God over Babylon. And he may have missed out on their parties, but he was the guy that people ran to when they really need to know something. If you don’t have the diet of God’s word, you’ll have nothing to offer people of real value.
You know, it all came down to a test of Daniel’s God’s diet versus the Babylonian diet. Let’s see which one is better. We tend to think things look so much worse, so much poorer, it’s so much dumber doing things God’s way. But is it really? God’s diet is so much better than the world’s diet. You see, they did a test to see who’d look better, and Daniel and his friends looked healthier, they were smarter, brighter. I was thinking about how wrecked people on drugs and alcohol and involved in heaps of sex look. You can see their sin written all over their lives, their thinking, they’re hollow, empty, there’s no light, no spark. It does pay to do things God’s way. This world will ruin you. It gives you temporary fixes, but it leaves you like Solomon… vanity, vanity, vanity… vexation of spirit! God used Daniel as a life saver, lives were spared because he knew the God of Nebuchadnezzar’s dreams. He was a leader, an example, salt and light in a dark place. He would’ve been none of those things had he departed from God’s word for the Babylonian diet.
So today, see the great truths presented in this chapter. What are you sustained by? Do you have an appetite for God’s word and to believe and obey it… or do you have a desire for what the world has for you? Is your flesh running your life, or is God’s word your guiding star? There is pressure on you to conform, to bow down, to be like everyone else, to do what others are doing, it could be from peers or even the king… what are you going to do? Everyone else may be disobeying God and living in sin, but it doesn’t make it ok for you to as well. What’s in your heart? What does your life look like? Is it really just Babylonian? Do you speak Babylonian, think Babylonian, live Babylonian? Have you departed from truth, have you caved in, have you bowed down… and you’re a good little Babylonian. The reason God isn’t using us, the reason we aren’t making a difference, it’s not a failure of God… it’s the fact we live our lives consuming everything this world offers, distracts and derails us with. And it’s defiled us, because all this world has to offer defiles us.
There were many Hebrews in Babylon who became Babylonians. There are many Christians out there who are Babylonians. They think, act and do just like the world, because they have consumed everything the world has given them, that’s what they wanted in life. God’s word is what truly gives health, light, it is what sustains you. Don’t let it go. Daniel of all people had many reasons he could’ve used to say, stuff it, look where God’s got me, he could’ve blamed and excused himself… but no he didn’t. He purposed in his heart not to defile himself with the king’s meat and drink. This life is going to take you doing some purposing as well, purposing in the heart to believe and obey the Lord Jesus Christ. May God minister the relevance and truth of this scripture, as we live in this present dark evil world, to your heart today.
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Hi, my name is Joseph Zadow. I am a 32 y/o Bible Blogger. I was new to blogging once! God’s word is the best thing that we can be given, and once we have it and know it for ourselves it is both a privilege and responsibility to bring it to others! We are blessed to be a blessing! I am a sinner (for sure!) saved by God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ and I am a Lord Jesus Christ follower. He is faithful even though I rarely am to him. I believe the Bible is the word of God, and stake my life on it. My destination is heaven. As they say, I’m just a passin’ through this world… although most of the time it’s more like hangin’ by a thread in Jericho! I love playing sports – particularly cricket… I currently work on an orchard and a side hobby business of mine is growing vegetables etc – they are good for you! I love writing. Always happy to talk, so feel free to leave a comment. You can read more about me and my blog here – kjvbibletruth.com/about :)
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