Scripture Reading: Daniel 1:1-21
“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. And God gave Daniel favor and compassion in the sight of the chief of eunuchs.” (Daniel 1:8,9)
Daniel is one of my favorite biblical heroes. As a youth he was taken captive by the Babylonians. Can you imagine how he felt to be taken from his family and his home? He had seen the Babylonians kill and destroy many of his people and then he was taken off to a foreign country. Daniel must have had a strong faith as a youth. God had shown favor to Daniel and was at work in his life.
In spite of the distressing circumstances Daniel was facing, he remained faithful to God. He did not let the tragedies he had witnessed weaken his resolve to honor God with his life. God had begun a good work in Daniel’s life (Philippians 1:6) and by grace, He would complete that work. It was God’s transforming grace that enabled Daniel to resolve that he would not be defiled by the pagan culture in which he was living. He was determined to be faithful to God.
I am reminded of Paul’s words on Romans 12:2 — “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Daniel had been transformed by the renewing of his mind. He was able to test so that he could determine God’s will. Daniel knew it was not God’s will for him to conform to the pagan culture of the Babylonians. Gave gave him strength to take a stand in a pagan palace. And God rewarded Daniel greatly for his faithfulness.
Every day of our lives we face the danger of being conformed to the world. Like Daniel, we must trust in our Savior to give us the strength not to make compromises with the ways of the world. We can never do this in our own strength. We have to trust God to give us the wisdom and the strength to live in the world and not become a part of it.
Lord God, thank You for your transforming grace that renews my mind and enables me to discern Your will. Give me strength this day to honor You and not make compromises with the world. Thank You for the work You are doing in my life. I know it is Your transforming grace that gives me the desire and the strength to live my life for Your glory.
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