Daniel 1:5, 8-17; Matthew 6:16-18
We don’t know that the king had evil intent in nourishing them from his own provision. Perhaps all he wanted was healthy, strong young men. But maybe he was also wanting to detach them from the God of their fathers by violating their dietary laws. Whatever the intent of the king, Daniel had no intent of defiling himself in that way.
Daniel offered a test that showed he didn’t just have his own self interests at heart. His trust in God gave him an humble spirit. He would accept whatever verdict his master rendered.
God honored the faith and faithfulness of Daniel and his friends. Not only did He make them healthy and strong, He invested in them “knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom” (Daniel 1:17).
Daniel’s success in a heathen land almost surely depended on his integrity and faithfulness at home among his family and his peers. Of course the same goes for you!
God is not mocked. We reap what we sow. How foolish to sow carelessness, disobedience, rebellion and disrespect…and then expect to reap a harvest of blessing, conviction and strength! How unreasonable to think you can develop less than noble habits and manners of conduct at home or among “your people,” then perform nobly and spiritually when the “big” tests among the heathen come. Those who sow wild oats, reap wild oats. And they discover that while the sowing stage might have been “fun,” the reaping stage is extremely bitter.
Do you think Daniel felt uncomfortable standing for his conviction and the teachings of his heritage and his God? I am inclined to think that Daniel felt comfortable in the sense that this was familiar territory to him. I doubt this was the first time he had stood for conviction. The geographical place of his stand was new and unfamiliar to him, but the spiritual position on which he stood was not.
May God give us conviction and courage. And may we seek them now!
Read the rest: Daniel: Conviction and Courage