I’ve been reading through Daniel for the last couple of weeks and noticed this today in study and thought it might encourage you as it has encouraged me especially as it pertains to our desire as worship leaders to LIVE PURE in an impure culture.
In Chapter 1 King Nebuchadnezzar appoints that Daniel and his friends would have a daily ration of choice foods and wine that would have been dedicated to false Gods.. In response we see that:
“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 the eunuchs, and the chief of the eunuchs said to Daniel, “I fear my lord the king, who assigned your food and your drink; for why should he see that you were in worse condition than the youths who are of your own age? So you would endanger my head with the king.” Then Daniel said to the steward whom the chief of the eunuchs had assigned over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, “Test your servants for ten days; let us be given vegetables to eat and water to drink. Then let our appearance and the appearance of the youths who eat the king’s food be observed by you, and deal with your servants according to what you see.” So he listened to them in this matter, and tested them for ten days. At the end of ten days it was seen that they were better in appearance and fatter in flesh than all the youths who ate the king’s food. So the steward took away their food and the wine they were to drink, and gave them vegetables.” Daniel 1:8-16
Dr. Goldingay notes “Daniel and his friends gained success in a way that avoided losing holiness; they proved that holiness is the source of health, and that God was the source of wisdom and the power behind history. (Word & Biblical Commentary, p. 14)
God blesses Daniel’s commitment to pure and undefiled worship (Ps 24:3-5) to God and God alone. Daniel gave the Lord room to glorify himself before a pagan king and nation. Because of God’s work through the resolve of Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah.. we even see Nebuchadnezzar’s acknowledgement of the one true God in chapter 4: “Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise, exalt and honor the King of heaven, for all His works are true and His ways just, and He is able to humble those who walk in pride.” v. 37
I’m encouraged today that when we stand and proclaim that the worship of God will be uncompromised, He provides, He blesses, and grants wisdom, knowledge, and strength in the craziest of cultural environments. I’m also floored that when his people resolve in their hearts to LIVE PURE, even kings who oppose the worship of the one true God are convinced by the power of God that he is the one true God.
Blessings to you all as you seek to LIVE PURE before a culture that thinks our God is one of many.. Yet he alone IS.