No Compromise (Dan 1)

Sunday, March 22nd, 2009
Sermon Series: Daniel

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No Compromise

Daniel 1

Don’t you hate it when people are wrong about you?  When a parent, teacher, friend, or a leader says, “You’ll never get an ‘A’,” or “You’ll never get a date,” or “You’ll never make the team,” or “You’ll never be friends with them,” or “You’ll never amount to much.”  It can either wipe you out, or it can motivate you to try harder.

I remember boxing in high school, and having drawn names, I found myself facing Chuck, a 6′ 6″, 220 lb. heavy-weight.  I was 6’2” and 165 lbs. at the time.  All my friends were rehearsing my funeral.  They said, “There’s no way you can win against Chuck, you’re going to get killed.”  Their predictions were the very thing that fired me up.  When the first-round bell rang, I went out and destroyed Chuck.  He didn’t land one punch.  I creamed him in the first round—but I ran out of gas after round one, and was pounded into pizza in rounds two and three.

Only once did my dad say to me that he didn’t think I could get an “A” in one of my classes.  It was chemistry in college.  Not realizing he was for the first time using reverse psychology on me, I decided to prove him wrong by taking the class in the morning, studying all day, and then taking the same class at night to review it all and catch anything I missed.  Not only did I get an “A”, but I also ended up in the top three out of 600 students.  Happily, I also changed majors after that.

A lot of people have had similar experiences.  How about the Munich schoolmaster who said, “You’ll never amount to very much,” to Albert Einstein at age 10.  It happens all the time–I am sure you have experienced it.  People write others off, and then are proven wrong.  Take Stan Dale–at age 12, he was beat up by bullies and called weak. His dad said, “You are a weakling.”  He said, “Show me how to be strong.”  His dad replied, “Find out for yourself.”

Jesus later saved Stan, and he became a missionary to the Yali Indians in New Guinea, a primitive, cannibalistic people.  After years of ministry, they tried to kill him, but to help others escape, he stood in the path of the natives, and took over a hundred arrows before he fell and died–a man of courage–a hero.  Stan had become just the opposite of his dad’s judgment.  Not a weakling, but a man of strength.  Later, most of the natives found Christ because of him, and told his story.

We often can be wrong about people.  A long time ago, the proud king of a young nation began to conquer the world.  This entire world-changing process was pre-planned by our Sovereign God.  And this new conquering kingdom defeated the mighty Egyptians at the famous battle of Carchemish, and now, no kingdom stood in his way.  As he conquered kingdom after kingdom, this mighty king, wanting to prove how great and wise he was, would take prisoners he captured, the best junior highers of a nation, and turn them into his servants.  He would train them in the ways of his nation, and his goal was to turn them from following their god(s), to follow his gods.

This king had written off the youth of the conquered countries.  He was sure after three years of his best brainwashing, they’d end up as loyal Babylonians, no longer willing to serve their God.  This king was certain he could get anyone to compromise.  But Nebuchadnezzar was proven wrong.  The great king of Babylon was proven wrong by Daniel.  Turn to Daniel 1.

Daniel’s story reads like a melodrama.  Evil Nebuchadnezzar conquers the world and takes Judah captive in 605 BC.  He took the who’s who of Jewish youth back with him to the mighty city of Babylon.  Picture this place: Babylon was a rectangular city that sat astride the mighty Euphrates River.  The wall around the city was eleven miles long, and a total of 85 feet thick. There were watch towers every 65 feet on the wall, with at least eight giant gates in the wall.  The city contained a massive palace complex, was filled with 43 temples, and housed at least a half-million Chaldeans.  These nomadic people lived in the region of modern Iraq and Kuwait, but were unified under Nebopolassar, the father of Nebuchadnezzar, to form the Babylonian empire.  Now as chapter one unfolds, the plot thickens.  Some have said Daniel’s circumstances weren’t that bad, not a big deal, not really a tough test–but look at . . .

#1 The circumstances

Look at what king Nebuchadnezzar put Daniel, his three friends, and a host of other junior highers through to turn them from their God in verses 1-4.  “In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it. 2 And the Lord gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, along with some of the vessels of the house of God; and he brought them to the land of Shinar, to the house of his god, and he brought the vessels into the treasury of his god.”

This is NOT a surprise, God warned through prophets, through Israel being invaded by Assyria and eventually being taken captive by Assyria.

This is NOT an accident. Notice in verse 2, “the Lord gave”–it wasn’t Nebuchadnezzar’s wisdom or Babylon’s might, but the Lord’s will.

This is NOT a little offense. The Lord allowed His own temple to be robbed, showing how serious and comprehensive God’s judgment is.

And in order to keep the royal families in line back in Judah, and in order to maintain control over His empire, look what Nebuchadnezzar orders.  Verse 3-4, “Then the king ordered Ashpenaz, the chief of his officials, to bring in some of the sons of Israel, including some of the royal family and of the nobles, 4 youths in whom was no defect, who were good-looking, showing intelligence in every branch of wisdom, endowed with understanding, and discerning knowledge, and who had ability for serving in the king’s court.”

Like Hitler, Nebuchadnezzar designed a youth program in order to brainwash the next generation.  This is a specific plan in order to get these teens to compromise, attacking their mind, tempting their pride, and undermining their beliefs.  What was the Babylonian strategy to get them to compromise and conform?

First  To cause them to think differently

Nebuchadnezzar ordered Ashpenaz to get them to think differently.  Look at the rest of verse 4, “and he ordered him to teach them the literature and language of the Chaldeans.”  These young men had been trained in the law of God, to think like a child of God.  Now they were going to be indoctrinated for three years to think like Babylonians.  They would be saturated in Babylonian philosophy, magic, astrology, science and medicine.  And therein lays the danger for them and us.  If we don’t really know the Word of God, then we’ll not know how to distinguish truth from error.  Anyone who is ignorant of the details of the Bible is in danger of being deceived, which leads to compromise.

Turn to Colossians 2:6-8, “As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, 7 having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude. 8 See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ.”

How do we avoid thinking like the world thinks?  Only by thinking like the Word thinks–thinking Biblically.  That only comes through listening, study, memorization and reading.  Any Christian can and will compromise when they don’t know what the Bible says.  The Bible says every one of our thoughts is to be captive to Christ.  Our thoughts are always to be grounded in truth.  Do you think Biblically?  If the enemy can get you to think contrary to God’s Word, then he can get you to live disobediently to God’s will.

Daniel and all of Judah’s finest students had to go through all of this errant indoctrination for three years.  It would be like you going to Moscow University for three years, and trying to live for Christ.  To live for Christ, you need to read, love, apply, enjoy the Bible more than you do secular education and literature–you need to love God with all your mind, you need to, 1 Peter 2:2, “Like newborn babes, long for the pure milk of the word, that by it you may grow in respect to salvation.”  So they wanted to get them to think differently and . . .

Second  To appeal to their pride

In order to get the men to compromise, the Babylonians planned to feed their pride.  Look at verse 5, “And the king appointed for them a daily ration from the king’s choice food and from the wine which he drank, and appointed that they should be educated three years, at the end of which they were to enter the king’s personal service.”

Do you realize just how subtle this is?  They’re captives, but now they eat from the king’s own food and drink.  They will receive the best education in the known world, and get to be big shots to this ruler of the world, enter into the king’s personal service, rule over their own people–you’ll have power, you’ll be in charge.

The world says the same thing to Christians.  “Hey, just do what we do, live like we live, think like we think and you’ll be cool, trendy, with it, together, part of the in-crowd.”  If you live like the world lives, imitating the dress, speech, habits, behavior, choices, priorities, focus, desires of the world—then you’ll be successful, you’ll be great, and you’ll be accepted.  What a minute, what’s wrong with eating the king’s food?  What’s the problem with learning about another culture and serving a foreign king?  Nothing, absolutely nothing is the matter with any of those things, or anything else, unless it goes contrary to the Word of God.

So what’s wrong with eating the king’s food?  Most of you already know.  Two reasons back then:

ONE Eating meant allegiance to a false god–when meat was sacrificed to the gods, as was the case with the king’s food, to eat it meant you had an allegiance to that god.  You were inviting that god to indwell you–by eating, you were taking that god inside of you, and worshiping that god.  That brings a whole new meaning to indigestion.  Oh, I just ate chili fries, and the gods must be mad–they’re fighting inside of me, they want to come out or come back up–what does a burp mean?  To eat the king’s food was a religious act.

That is not the case today.  Colossians 2:16 “Let no one act as your judge in regard to food or drink.”  Matthew 15:11, “Not what enters into the mouth defiles the man, but what proceeds out of the mouth, this defiles the man.”  1 Timothy 4:3, “Men who . . . advocate abstaining from foods, which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth.”

But eating the king’s food back then would be like me going to Sunset Blvd. in the Hollywood region, shaving my head, grabbing a bongo, and singing, “Hari Chrisna, Hari Chrisna, Hari Chrisna.”  You’d say, “You’re a Christian?”  Yes!  “But why are you giving approval to a Hindu god?”  It would be totally inconsistent.  Eating the food back then would be making a statement about who you worship, follow, love and believe.

TWO Eating meant disobeying God’s law.  The Old Testament law forbid the eating of certain foods.  Foods we are free to eat today were forbidden in the Old Testament–no lobster, no crab, no pork and no hot dogs.  There goes Costco date night.  In Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14, certain meats and certain ways of preparation of those meats were forbidden, in order to protect God’s people, and help them live healthy and separate.  They were clearly, explicitly contrary to God’s Word—period.

Nebuchadnezzar’s goal was for the students to feel privileged, be spoiled, and identify with their new king, their new kingdom, and their high status.  He appealed to their pride by giving them the same food that came to the king’s table.  Can you feel the rush of being treated like royalty here?  The pressure to compromise is stronger when we receive awards, gain status, gain recognition, or we’re elevated to position, power or influence, like Daniel was tempted to do.  This is the seduction to fit in–the power of peer pressure for all ages.

The bottom line was, Babylon wanted them to compromise their convictions.  Babylon was challenging their unbreakable beliefs–their convictions.  A conviction is an unchangeable belief based upon the truth of God’s Word.  But the goal of Nebuchadnezzar was to erode their complete trust in the one true God and His Word.

Look at verse 6 and 7, and see what else he would do.  “Now among them from the sons of Judah were Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. 7 Then the commander of the officials assigned new names to them; and to Daniel he assigned the name Belteshazzar, to Hananiah Shadrach, to Mishael Meshach, and to Azariah Abed-nego.”

Notice the chart, and how they changed their names:

Hebrew name Hebrew meaning Babylonian name Babylonian meaning
Daniel God is my judge Belteshazzar Whom Bel Favors

[the prince of Bel]

Hananiah God is gracious Shadrach Illumined by Shad [sun god]
Mishael God is great Meshach Who is like Shach [love goddess]
Azariah God is my helper Abed-Nego The servant of Nego

[fire god]

Changing their names was intentional.  The Hebrew names describe a monotheistic God of judgment, grace, provision and greatness.  The Babylonian names reveal polytheistic gods steeped in Satanism and goddess worship, so changing their names is an attempt . . .

to undermine their loyalty to the one true God;

to get them to compromise the truth;

to get them to change their convictions;

to cause them to doubt their God; and

to subtly encourage them not to think about their God.

Nebuchadnezzar was betting against Daniel, his three friends, and all the students, that they would compromise–only four passed the test.  A change of diet is not a big deal to us, and a name change (even to Big Dog Snoop Daddy 30 Cent) doesn’t mean a lot.  But diet and name change was a big issue to Jews in Babylon.

We have different compromises today.  Cheating on taxes; lying to our kids, spouse, boss, clients; answering the phone and saying, “I’m not here”; our lust for things; being late on bills, to appointments, to church, to work; speeding, not stopping at intersections; web-surfing at work; talking on the phone illegally in your car; watching too much TV; gossiping; not dieting; being critical or irritable.  Regardless of what it is or what it was, Daniel was not going to compromise.

#2  The compromise

What would compromise look like?  The food was against the law, and in his situation, partaking was a part of false worship.  Daniel could not eat and still obey God.  Just imagine what Daniel could have thought, and how he could have rationalized.  Maybe you’ve compromised with this kind of thinking.

1. He could have thought, “This is what the king has commanded, and after all, I am supposed to be submissive to authority.”  (After all, it is company policy.)

2. Or, he could have feared, “If I disobey, I’m gonna get in big trouble.”  And the punishments were not light, considering fiery furnaces and lions’ dens that were used later.  Those are not a little slap on the hands.

3. Or, he could have been swayed by his appetite–after all, this is the best food in the world.  (There are some light picky eaters here, and there are some black-hole, piranha, vacuum cleaner eaters here–those who love food would have found this to be a strong temptation.)

4. Daniel could have rationalized, “To disobey the king now would ruin any future chance of witnessing to the king later.”

5. Daniel might have thought, “I’ll eat now, but later when I have more influence, possibly the kings ear, then I will convince him to not make me eat this food.”

6. He could have even thought that because God had been so unfair to him, allowing his own country to be destroyed and making him a slave, why should he be so careful to obey God in such a small thing as food.  In fact, there is the possibility of the king actually turning these boys into eunuchs—“If God allows that, why should I live for Him?”

7. Lastly, he could have even thought, since mom and dad are back in Jerusalem, why not eat the food?  They’ll never know.  “No one I know and love will ever know–I will never get caught, so what?”

You see, compromise begins by following the path of least resistance.  It’s holding a conviction until it gets in the way of our comfort.  It’s having a standard as long as it doesn’t violate something I want to do.  We compromise when we follow pragmatism–if it works for you, do it.  So instead of heavenly wisdom found in the Word, we follow earthly wisdom found in the world.  These four students had a big decision to make, and that decision would determine whether they would honor God, or compromise.

#3 The conviction

Daniel didn’t give in to any of those options–he didn’t think like that.  How is it that Daniel, being only 13 to 16, succeeded?  How is it he lived for God?  How did he remain so close to God for so long, over eighty years?  What did Daniel do to live a life of no compromise?  Three simple things:

First  Daniel made up his mind

Look at verse 8, “But Daniel made up his mind that he would not defile himself with the king’s choice food or with the wine which he drank; so he sought permission from the commander of the officials that he might not defile himself.”  Did you know that Daniel’s parents, even his country, may have helped Daniel stand strong against compromise?  What do I mean?

The southern kingdom, Judah, did have some good kings, and the last of the good kings was Josiah.  Daniel was born during Josiah’s reforms and revival in 621 BC.  Do you remember King Josiah, 2 Chronicles 34, who took the throne at 8, and at 16 began to clean up the idolatry and filth from the 57-year reign of his wicked father and grandfather?  Then at the age of 26, when the book of the law was found in the temple, Josiah led the nation in repentance and obedience to God’s law.

Daniel was born during these days.  But Daniel’s mom and dad did not push him to stand strong.  Nor did Daniel’s friends carry him along, but Daniel literally made up his mind, which means to set his heart.  It is like stepping in a box of wet cement, and letting it dry–you can’t change your mind.

Daniel . . .

knew the truth and what was right

decided to follow truth, hold it, and live it, and this is key

drew his line before he was faced with a choice

Daniel practiced preventative medicine–you know what that is . . . vitamins, eating right and exercise, so you don’t get sick.  In a sense, Daniel didn’t wait until he got sick to take steps to get well.  He took steps before he got sick.  He knew what he would do before he was faced with compromise.  Daniel was making the right choices in advance, before facing the pressure of temptation, so as to avoid compromise before he would have to pay the consequences of compromise.  Is this speaking to you?

We know the truth, but so many times we bomb out because we don’t make up our minds before we have to make a decision, before we are tempted.  We haven’t said to God, or to others, or to ourselves–when I get into this situation, I will obey no matter what.

Have you made up your mind to obey when it comes to porno, the second long look, taking things from work, saying things about others?  Understand, Daniel’s determination was not based upon speculation, presumption, his own set of rules, or his own way of thinking.  It was based upon the laws of the Word of God.  When he said he would not defile himself with the king’s choice food, it referred to the dietary restrictions in God’s law.

Singles, what will you do when you’re tempted to go too far with a guy or a girl.  Do you know what the Bible says?  Have you decided now, made up your mind, how you will prevent sexual compromise?  Flee.  Or are you planning now to make excuses?  Will you say, “But I really love him/her,” or “What’s the use, I’ve blown it before?” or “I’ve made up my mind to obey God no matter what.”

For the rest of you, when you hear gossip or slander, have you decided in advance how you will respond?  Will you do what the Bible says, or will you compromise?  When you have the opportunity to take something that is not yours, and not get caught, will you compromise, or have you made up your mind?

What is encouraging is, Daniel did not make this decision alone.  Look at verses 11 to 15, “But Daniel said to the overseer whom the commander of the officials had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah, 12 ’Please test your servants for ten days, and let us be given some vegetables to eat and water to drink. 13 Then let our appearance be observed in your presence, and the appearance of the youths who are eating the king’s choice food; and deal with your servants according to what you see.’ . . . 15 And at the end of ten days their appearance seemed better and they were fatter than all the youths who had been eating the king’s choice food.” This is bad news for most men–vegetables are good.  Sorry vegans, you can’t use this as evidence for your lifestyle, since the point is not vegetables, but obedience.  The law actually required the eating of meat in the Passover—(My Big Fat Greek Wedding, “Eon not eat meat, I will serve lamb.”)

Daniel had a group of three friends who had the same convictions he did.  They too wanted to obey God.  What would it have been like if they had compromised, too?  Tough, maybe too tough, and very sad–but Daniel’s three best friends were committed to obedience too.  They supported each other and kept each other accountable.

What about your friends–the crowd you run with?  Do they want to please God, just like you do, or do they seem to be moving in a different direction, or not as fast, or not as committed?  First Corinthians 15:33, “Do not be deceived: bad company corrupts good morals.” Men, do you have brothers who fire you up or drag you down?  Ladies, do you have sisters who push you to grow or invite you to sin?

Daniel had Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah who were committed to obey no matter what–no compromise even at the risk of death.  David had his mighty men, Jesus had his twelve, and Paul had his team.  Each of us benefit from friends who are committed to the same truths we are.  We need friends who have made up their mind to obey the Bible alone–friends who desire to live a life of no compromise.  Do you have friends like that?  How else did Daniel live a life of no compromise?

Second  Daniel followed through on his convictions on the truth

Look at verse 9 to 12, “Now God granted Daniel favor and compassion in the sight of the commander of the officials,10 and the commander of the officials said to Daniel, ‘I am afraid of my lord the king, who has appointed your food and your drink; for why should he see your faces looking more haggard than the youths who are your own age? Then you would make me forfeit my head to the king.’11 But Daniel said to the overseer whom the commander of the officials had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah,12 ‘Please test your servants for ten days, and let us be given some vegetables to eat and water to drink.’”

You see it’s one thing to say you will obey, it’s another to obey.  Daniel wasn’t fake or self-righteous.  He didn’t parade his decision.  He didn’t force the man to do what he wanted, and he didn’t worry about what the non-believers thought.  They could have thought, “How ungrateful,” and ridiculed him.  And Daniel didn’t even worry about what the believers thought, “There goes Divine Daniel, or Big Bad Belteshazzar.”  And note this:  only four believers did what was right out of hundreds.  Your Christian friends will not always do what is right.

Let’s have you four stand up . . . out of a crowd of this size, only four did what was right.  But what do you do when you are alone in your commitment to obey the Word of God?  Do what Daniel did.  Daniel sought to co-operate without compromising.  He did as much as he could, but never contradicted the Word of God.

Did you notice Daniel’s approach didn’t demand, protest, rebuke or insist?  He didn’t say, “I am not going to eat this pagan slop.”  Nor did he say, “I would never eat this kind of food.”  He was a perfect balance between truth and grace, just like the Lord Jesus Christ in John 1:14, “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.”  Like Jesus, Daniel took his stand on truth, but he was gracious.  He held unbending convictions, but wasn’t confrontational or caustic.

Do you think Daniel would have compromised if it had not worked out with the commander and overseer in verse 9?  No, he had set his heart not to compromise already.  How often do we sit back, when we ought to stand up for what’s right?  Do we act on conviction or emotions?  Convenience or preference?

Do we act on what we know is right?

Do we act against sin; do we speak out for truth?

Do we share the Gospel when given the opportunity?

Do we have any convictions?  Remember, convictions are unbending beliefs you will die for, based on the truth of God’s Word.

How about when someone is slandered, even if they deserve it?

How about when everyone is doing wrong?

How about when everyone is watching or listening to something they shouldn’t?

How about when the work is unfair or everyone is cheating?

How about when a little compromise seems okay?

If Daniel had compromised just a little, he could not have written this letter.  But you have to start somewhere.  Have you made the commitment that you want God’s honor and glory at any price?  If not, maybe you are one of those supposed Christians who want religion, but not Jesus Himself.  Like one author wrote:  “I would like to buy $3 worth of God, please, not enough to explode my soul or disturb my sleep, but just enough to equal a cup of warm milk or a snooze in the sunshine.  I don’t want enough of Him to make me love a homeless man or clean up an orphan’s vomit or hold my tongue or not sin with my girlfriend.  I want ecstasy, not transformation; I want the warmth of the womb, not a new birth.  I want a pound of the Eternal in a paper sack.  I would like to buy $3 worth of God, please.”  Is that you?  How else did Daniel live a life of no compromise?

Third   Daniel, let God do the rest

He did all he could, then verse 9, “Now God granted Daniel favor and compassion in the sight of the commander of the officials.”  He was granted favor and compassion by the official because of God.  And what was the result?  Look at verse 17, “And as for these four youths, God gave them knowledge and intelligence in every branch of literature and wisdom; Daniel even understood all kinds of visions and dreams.”  Daniel received a fantastic secular education, but he grew in wisdom.  No matter how you educate your child, you best make their heart for Christ and their practical wisdom of following the Scripture your highest goals, or you’ll end up raising a Pharisee or a continual compromiser.

Can you imagine what graduation day was like?  You face the greatest Gentile king who ever lived, and have to take the ultimate oral exam–no CliffsNotes, no open book.  Look at verse 18 to 20, “Then at the end of the days which the king had specified for presenting them, the commander of the officials presented them before Nebuchadnezzar. 19 And the king talked with them, and out of them all not one was found like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah; so they entered the king’s personal service. 20 And as for every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king consulted them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and conjurers who were in all his realm.”

If we do what’s right and let God take care of the rest, will He work it out?  Yes–for God’s glory and for our good.  These four ended up not only the best of the youths, but ten times better than the best in the whole world.  When you say no to what is wrong, God says yes to you.  Many of us are not growing and experiencing the blessing of God because we won’t say no to sin, we won’t say no to little compromises of speech, attitude and action.  Bring your life under the authority of the Word and act on it.

After we choose not to compromise, we make up our minds to step out in dependent obedience and leave the rest to God–it will work out, but it will work out God’s way.  It may not be easy.  It may result in persecution, or loss–but it will work for His glory and our good.  It’s never easy to stand alone.  You may have to stand alone among your friends.  If you do, God will bless. If you don’t have to stand alone, thank God for the few who will stand with you.  So here’s the challenge . . .

ONE Make up your mind to live a life of no compromise.  Be unwilling to participate in anything that clearly disobeys God’s Word.  Make up your mind to make no concessions; no giving time, talent or money to organizations that benefit your client or employer, but support gay rights, abortion, anti-creation dogma, extreme environmental error, or undermine parental or church responsibility.  Stop all moral compromises of lying, lusting, stealing and/or cheating.  Make up your mind to reject the end justifying the means–it may mean persecution, or demotion, or loss of income–even a job.  But will you trust God and obey God’s Word like Daniel did, or not?

TWO Depend on God alone.  You can’t live a life of no compromise (a holy life)–it must be the Holy Spirit through us as we depend on Him and obey His Word.  What did Daniel 1 show us?  Look at verse 2, “And the Lord gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand.”  Look at verse 9, “Now God granted Daniel favor and compassion in the sight of the commander of the officials.”  Look at verse 17, “And as for these four youths, God gave them knowledge and intelligence.”

You will know nothing of God’s power, until you turn from your sin and depend completely upon Jesus Christ–He is the Way, the Truth and the Life and no one comes to the Father except through Christ.  And you will know nothing of God’s power as a Christian until you live every single day in dependence upon the Spirit of God.  We are not responsible for outcomes, just dependent obedience.  We make up our minds, exercise our wills in dependent obedience, then . . .

THREE Trust God to take care of the rest.  You may not be elevated to second in command in an empire; you may not walk untouched and unburned in the fiery furnace; and you may not spend the night with a lion for a pillow; but you will never know what God will do, unless you trust Him enough to live a life of no compromise.  What happened to Daniel?  Look at verse 21, “And Daniel continued until the first year of Cyrus the king.”

As a result of living no compromise, Daniel served four major kings:  Nebuchadnezzar, Belshazzar, Darius and Cyrus.  He held his high position in each government almost the entire time, and he lived a life that glorified and honored God for over eighty years.  Will you dare to be a Daniel?


ABOUT THIS PREACHER

Chris is the teaching pastor at Faith Bible Church – Murrieta.

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