“But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the king’s food, or with the wine that he drank. Therefore he asked the chief of the eunuchs to allow him not to defile himself.”
(Daniel 1:8 ESV)
In the first group of exiles to be brought into Babylon, we find Daniel and his three homies. What could have been a time of fear and frustration for him and his companions due to the lack of leadership and obedience of his people turned into years of great favor on his life. What was it though that brought this favor? At the beginning of this book of Daniel, verse 8 tells us that Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself.
This term literally means:
* Set in his heart
* Made up his mind
He could have easily ate the meat that was offered to foreign gods but revered God so much that he didn’t want to be found unworthy or unclean or unfit to be in the presence of God. He found eternal worth far greater than temporal, earthly worth and was not about to back down to please man or gain credibility amongst the ungodly.
As we further read and know the story of Daniel, his faith and resolve led to God granting him favor and compassion in the sight of the chief eunichs (v. 9) but furthermore learning and skill in all literature and wisdom, as well as an understanding in all visions and dreams (v. 17). It was the resolve that led to a successful life. It was a discipline that took great faith to trust that if he were to stick to his beliefs and obey God that God was trustworthy to come through to him and not only bless him with gifts but keep him from harm and cause him to have worldly influence into eternity.
As we later read in vv. 17-45 Daniel is used by God to interpret the King’s dream bringing glory and honor to God (but also Daniel himself). It all started though, way back in verse 8 with a resolve.
As the world today gets crazier and crazier, I am convicted to have a better resolve of Christ. It’s so easy to fall into the things of the world and blend in wether it is so that we’re liked or because we fear man. We compromise our faith often but don’t see the great rewards that come with an unwavering resolve unto God and a disciplined obedience. We’re not in exile like Daniel was, but we are definitely bombarded by media, worldly beliefs and religions, as well as money.
I want to be a man of God who’s resolve is that of Christ. That others would see Jesus and that because of my faith in His death and resurrection, that His favor is on me and that I live out of that favor of being loved, forgiven, and protected in the end. This does not mean that it’s the easiest thing, but thanks be to God for His spirit that is with me to enable this resolve. I don’t want to blend in, I want to stand out for Jesus and his Will on earth. I want His kingdom to be extended throughout my area of influence and have a resolve that isn’t determined by what the world says but by what the Word says. I want to be in the constant presence of God, fit for His work and willing to face any challenge so that He might receive glory and honor and praise.