Guest post by Jeanette Andrade
December 8 Scripture Selection: Daniel 1-2
Food for Thought: Dan. 1:1-15
Daniel’s refusal to eat the king’s meats and drink his wine has led to many erroneous conclusions and unnecessary doctrines. Daniel wasn’t refusing meat just because it was meat, nor wine just because it was wine. After all, the Hebrews did eat meat and drink wine. So what could have been the cause of his objections for which he was willing to even risk his life and the life of the man in charge of him?
There are two probably possibilities.
First, it most likely was meat and wine from that which was sacrificed to false gods which would have been quite objectionable and offensive to Daniel. In the New Testament, the apostle Paul dealt with the very same issue, though coming from the era of grace instead of the Law, his perspective was a bit different. Paul told the Christians who were unsure about the issue that they were free to eat anything because those false gods were nothing to them; all food is provided by God. However, if they knew it had been offered as a sacrifice, to avoid misunderstandings and to keep from being a stumbling block to other dinner companions, it would be best to abstain from eating it. (See Rom. 14:13-21; I Cor. 8:4-13.)
Secondly, especially referring to the meat, the Jews were commanded to avoid consuming certain types. The Lord gave them very strict dietary guidelines to follow for both spiritual and physical health reasons. The Lord knew which animals would be most likely to cause illness and which would not. In addition, again for spiritual and physical reasons, the animals had to be slaughtered and prepared in a particular manner, kosher, which would not have been available for Daniel and his companions due to their situation. Daniel’s request to eat vegetables and drink water demonstrated that, though in bondage to the Babylon king, he still remained loyal to the Lord of all.
Now that Jesus was made the sacrifice for all mankind, food is no longer what defiles. The apostle Peter learned that lesson on both spiritual and natural levels (Acts 10:9-28). Still, Daniel and his companions teach an even greater lesson, that of remaining faithful to the Lord when pressures of the environment would attempt to influence us to cave to the demands of those of the world. Life in Christ produces much better results than anything the world may promise. That is why the apostle Paul tells us in Romans 12:2, “And be not conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.”
Digging Deeper (What scriptures can further enhance today’s reading?):
Getting Personal (What has God shown you in today’s reading?):
Confession of Faith (Example: Lord, based on Mat. 1:21 and 23, I understand that Jesus is God, and I receive Him as my personal Lord and Savior.):
Important Events on This Day (birthdays, anniversaries, etc.):