"But Daniel resolved not to defile himselfÖ" Daniel 1:8
Will the real wicked king please stand up?
Ever meet a man who virtually spit in Godís face? Youíre about to!
This manís behavior was arrogant, flippant, and irresponsible. He had no regard for the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Trouble is, he was also king of Israel
This man, Jehoiakim, was delivered into the hands of Babylon (by whom?) (v. 1,2) Remember the four ways to help you understand the OTÖ
Jehoiakim was a puppet, and a wicked king (II Kings 23:34-37)
Nebuchadnezzar first came in 605, and dealt with Egypt (Jer. 46:2)
Jehoiakim quickly made a deal with Babylon, and gave up some of the Temple articles, and some of the promising young people
Perhaps feeling secure in his deal, Jehoiakim rejects Jeremiah and his message, and insults God Himself (Jeremiah 25,26,36) Later, he rebels against Babylon, bringing a swift response (II Kings 24:1-7, Jer. 27:9-11)
The University of Babylon
In the midst of all this, Daniel and his 3 friends are taken to Babylon. They were the cream of the crop, the best Israel had (v. 4)
They would be taught a foreign language, highly developed concepts of religion, science and philosophy. They would have the best food and wine, and access to the kingís gymnasiums. It would be a good life.
Their names reflect their spiritual upbringing (v. 6,7)
Notice what they did refuse, and what they did not refuse
It is one thing to choose to serve God in the comfort and privacy of your own home. It is another thing to choose to serve God when it can cost you dearly.
#1) As Christians, our responsibility is to demonstrate love, unity and purity throughout a society that is becoming more and more pagan (Phil 2:15,16; James 1:27)
We should use every legal right to help restore biblical values in our nation without losing sight of our primary task Ė the Great Commission
To live in Godís will day to day, we must begin with the decision always to honor God in our lives (Romans 12:1,2)
When we live and work in an environment out of harmony with Godís will, we must make decisions based on Godís principles rather than legalistic rules