Daniel 1. It’s the story about how Daniel and his friends got kidnapped with a bunch of other people and were told to eat the food and wine of the king. Daniel asked if him and his friends could eat vegetables and were put on a trial period. They ended up being healthier than the others. Pretty simple story, right? If you’ve grown up in the church, you’ve heard it at least 10 times – if not like 500 times. But there is a lot more to it.
First, let’s talk about Daniel. Rich, handsome, intelligent (vs 3-4). He was instructed to eat “of the food that the king ate, and of the wine that he drank” (vs 5). There was no choice, but he decided that he would not eat the king’s food. (If you want to better understand why the food is a big deal, check out Exodus 34:15.) He goes to the chief of the eunuchs to ask about eating something else. This was a pretty daring move. He is in enemy territory, and they could have hurt him – or worse. Afraid of the king, the chief of the eunuchs says no. He goes then to the steward and requests a trial period in which he eat vegetables and drink water for ten days. Daniel didn’t give up. He set his mind to doing God’s will and believed that God would take care of it. Seeing that they looked better than the others, they were allowed to continue this diet. And God blessed them for it, because He gave them “learning and skill in all literature and wisdom, and Daniel had understanding in all visions an dreams” (vs 17). It continues, “And in every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters that were in all his kingdom” (vs. 20).
So, in summary, Daniel had to make a really tough decision. He chose to follow God when that wasn’t an option. Because he followed God and did His will, God blessed Him and allowed Him to prosper where he was. We have difficult decisions to make, and sometimes there is no other choice. We need to figure out what is holding us back from faith like Daniel’s, and then we need to just fix it.