"And the king appointed them a daily provision of the king's meat,
and of the wine which he drank: so nourishing them three years,
that at the end thereof they might stand before the king." Daniel 1:5.
The story of Daniel and his three friends teaches us an important lesson. It teaches us that when we know that something is unhealthy to eat, we shouldn't eat it, just to appease our friends. How many times I've heard Christians say that, "We must be careful not to offend someone by not eating whatever they offer to us." If there were ever a time when it would have been right to compromise and eat what was set before him, Daniel had that opportunity. Think about it. He was told to eat whatever food & drink the King set before him, food that he knew was UNHEALTHY and on top of that, it had been offered to Idols. Remember, Daniel was young and he was a slave. He and his three friends and many other Jewish youth had just been taken captive by Nebuchadnezzar's army and hauled off to Babylon, and were put into a rigorous 3 year educational program. The King was providing them with what he considered the BEST food he could give them. It would have been very easy for Daniel and his three friends to justify eating that food and drinking the alcohol set before them. They knew the risks they were taking by doing the right thing and not compromising the diet that had been handed down to them from God Himself. They knew that much was at stake, perhaps, even their lives.
But they also knew that if they compromised here, they would be on a slippery slope that only went one direction ~ down. And they knew too, that if they stood firm, that they could ask for God's blessing and protection, and they trusted God enough to believe that even when their lives were in danger, they should obey Him, and let the chips fall wherever they would fall. And God blessed Daniel and his three friends wonderfully! At the end of the 3 years, when they went for their final exams, Daniel and his friends were found them not just twice as intelligent as their peers, no, he found them 10 TIMES more intelligent!
"Whenever the king consulted them in any matter
requiring wisdom and balanced judgment,
he found them ten times more capable than any
of the magicians and enchanters in his entire kingdom." Daniel 1:20
So too, today, we should do the right thing, and not be afraid to offend our friends or family. Be as diplomatic as possible, but know where the line is and refuse to compromise where we should not compromise.
I've found personally, that it is rare that people are offended, if you kindly explain your convictions. Instead of compromising, use these opportunities as WITNESSING OPPORTUNITIES, where you can share the TRUTH with those in darkness. The only times I've had people be offended were times when they were Christians who KNEW BETTER and were angry with me for not joining them in their disobedience.
These Old Testament stories have wonderful lessons for you and me TODAY!
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Daniel's Example Is For Us Today