Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Experience of New Life
“But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank; therefore he requested of the chief of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.” (vs. 8)
In this passage we learn about how King Nebuchadnezzar tells the chief of his court to get Israelite men to serve in his royal court. There were qualifications that these men had to meet in order to be selected, “young men without any physical defect, handsome, showing aptitude for every kind of learning, well informed, quick to understand, and qualified to serve in the king’s palace” (vs. 4). Nebuchadnezzar’s intention for these men was to hold them captive as his servants, amongst one of these men was Daniel. It was common practice back then to give a new name for people when they changed their position. Daniel’s name became, Belteshazzar, which means “protect his life”. These selected candidates were supposed to be given royal treatment for the duration of their training. Although Daniel was there to be the King’s servant, he opposed to having the King’s food and wine. He had the option to live this luxurious lifestyle that was offered to him. Daniel refused to partake in eating the food at the King’s court not out of arrogance but because the food and wine that were served were used as a sacrifice to idols. Daniel served and remained faithful to God, not the King’s idols. Daniel along with the other selected Israelites were held captive by Nebuchadnezzar due to Israel’s idolatry and disobedience to God. How many of us are placed in such challenging situations in our lives where those around us expect to do something that is not in tune to God’s desires? When you are placed in such circumstances, think and act upon what God expects from you.
Daniel was granted his request only because God knew his heart. “Now God had caused the official to show favor and compassion to Daniel” (vs.9). There is no reference that Daniel was punished, or cried for God to rescue him from this circumstance, because Daniel had faith in God. He granted Daniel the desires of his heart because he knew he was worshipping him and not the idols. He placed his eyes and hope on God no matter what the King had instructed or expected. “Daniel purposed in his heart” (vs. 8), throughout this circumstance in his life, he remained determined to serve God. Society can place a lot of expectations and pressures on you, but you have to please God and not others. When you’re facing a challenging situation like Daniel’s, ask yourself, is your goal to please God or men? God cares for you more than you can imagine. Through Daniel’s example we can learn two main life principles on how to overcome a difficult circumstance: 1. Be courageous and do not compromise 2. Set your mind to what God expects and desires for you and obey that.
Prayer: God, you know the challenges and difficulties we face in our life, may we not lose sight of you through the trials and help us to remain faithful to you.
Thought for the day: Whatever circumstance you’re in, set your heart and mind on God.
Debby Abraham, Bethel MTC, Philadelphia