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Dare to be a Daniel
Dare to be a Daniel
Daniel 1

COMPROMISE

Sometimes compromise is a good thing.

For example, your child wants to stay up till 9 p.m, but because of their age and how well they do with staying up late, you say to them "You can stay up until 830 and then read in your bed for 10 minutes."

Another example of compromise working is when you are buying a house. The price might be $400,000. You offer $360,000. After some negotiation you both come to agreement at the figure of $385,000.

While compromise can be a good thing, compromise can be a terribly bad thing.

For instance, compromise is always a bad thing when it comes to morality and right and wrong. Ask people for some examples of moral compromise

Some Biblical examples of compromise

1. David sleeping with Bathsheba
2. Samson marrying Delilah and his telling her the secret of his strength
3. Sarah giving her handmaid Hagar to Abraham-that they might have a child
4. Annanias and Saphira lying about how much they gave.

Personal observation:

-Moral compromise is a slippery slope that's hard to escape.
-Little things are not as little as we think them to be. Do any of you remember this verse from the Book of Song of Solomon "Catch for us the little foxes that spoil the vines" Song of Solomon 2:15. Point: Little things can result in great ruin-- the same as small compromises.
-Compromise will always lead to a disaster of some sort eventually
-Unless we regularly examine ourselves- with the Word of God as our filter- the areas of compromise in our lives will grow and not shrink
-compromise and hypocrisy seem to be related to each other.

That we might be inspired to live non compromising lives- as it regards right and wrong- turn with me to Daniel 1

Daniel 1 and the entire book of Daniel feature Daniel- from young person to senior citizen, following God wholeheartedly and without compromise.

Before reading text note:

-The book is named after Daniel, who was taken captive around 604/605 B.C by King Nebuchadnezzar- the first of 3 deportations.
-Daniel was a contemporary of Ezekiel and Jeremiah
-Daniel was a living hero for the Jews in Ezekiel
-By God's arrangement, Daniel was elevated to holding high office under 4 Babylonian kings. This shows the awesome power of God to lift up those who he wants, regardless of the circumstances or who is in charge.
-For an amazing 65 years Daniel was a chief figure in the Babylonian government.
-Daniel is an exciting book, detailing God's rescue of Daniel and his 3 friends from threat and danger - for their faith in God.
-Daniel is also exciting in that God gave to Daniel some incredible visions of the future (the near future, the distant future, and of Christ and his reign)
-Daniel and his three friends would have been in their teens when they were taken captive
-While most Jews were in a state of rebellion against God (Hence the nation was subject to the attacks of the Babylonians) Daniel and his 3 friends were followers of God and concerned about His glory and the way they lived their lives before Him
-Daniel and his 3 friends received the best education possible (3 years under the best educators of Babylon)
-The Jewish names that they had been given by their parents all had meanings that honored God. As captives they received new names that would have been offensive to them- for those new names (which they had no choice about) were names that would have been intended to honor the false gods of Babylon

READ TEXT

LESSONS OF THE TEXT

1. Daniel 1 and the entire book illustrates God's Sovereign control over nations, people, and history

Note: The choice of Daniel and his friends for captivity. There being chosen to receive special training. There being favoured by the official. There being given gifts of understanding by God. There passing of Nebuchadnezzars interview,etc.

The point: He's got the whole world in His hands

Verse: The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD; He directs it like a watercourse wherever he pleases. Proverbs 21:1

Application: History is HIStory. Trust God. Have faith. He's in control

2. As Daniel resolved not to defile himself, we need to resolve to not defile ourselves

One of the key verses of Daniel 1 is v.8 "But Daniel was determined not to defile himself by eating the food and wine given to them by the king."

A note on the food of the royal table: It would have been ritually unclean and a lot of it would have been in violation of the Jewish food laws (Leviticus 11). Babylonians had no qualms about eating pork or horse or any other food. In particular, pork would have been not allowed for Jews to eat at that time.

As Daniel had a fixed attitude to not defile himself with the royal food and wine, we need to have a fixed attitude to not defile and pollute ourselves.

What are some things that defile us- make us unclean/polluted?

It takes courage to say Yes to God and holiness and no to the world. We need to dare to be a Daniel. We need to take a stand for what is right and holy. We need to go against the flow.

We need to resolve to do what's right no matter how much peer pressure there is or what the threats against us may be.

Note: Daniel took a stand as a you person-- perhaps as young as 14-15 years old. Young or old, we need to stand up for what is right.


3. Ponder this: God honors those who honor Him.

What is it that God does for those who honor him, who seek His glory, who pursue after Him in Spirit and in truth?

In I Samuel 2:30 God gives us the answer; "Those who honor me I will honor, but those who despise me will be disdained."

Daniel and his 3 friends resolved not to defile themselves with the King's food, note what God did for them.

a. He caused the official over Daniel and his friends to show favor to Daniel v.9 (note that the official took quite a risk on their behalf. God so moved him to do that)
b. God prospered their vegetables diet to the extent that they looked healthier and stronger than those who ate at the kings table
c. God gave Daniel and his 3 friends the gift of knowledge and understanding- to the extent that they had no problems learning Aramaic or anything else that was thrown their way
d. At the end of their 3 years of training God enabled Daniel and his three friends to pass their interview with the king with "flying colours"
e. God placed Daniel in the royal court for 65 years.

When God says that He will honor those who honor Him, He means it.

God rewards and blesses those those who put Him first. God lifts up those who are humble and who are willing to take a stand for what is right. God exalts those who are concerned with His honor and glory.

If we would commit ourselves afresh to live godly lives and pure lives; if we would commit ourselves to rooting out what the Bible says displeases God, God will bless us, strengthen us, and prosper our efforts to honour Him.

CONCLUSION

We need to be on our guard as it pertains moral compromise. It's so easy to fall for the lie "It's only once" "It's only a little thing" "Everybody's doing it"

We need to take a stand for what's right. We need to resolve to do what's right no matter the peer pressure or the threats

We need to resolve to not pollute ourselves (by what we watch, listen to, read, ingest, where our feet take us)

We need to be willingly to examine ourselves and root out what we find to be against God and His ways. The standard we are to use: God's Word.

Here's something that we should never forget. God honours those who honour Him.

Daniel 1:8 is a great verse for us to memorize "But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine"

It's a great verse to memorize because it reminds us of God's call in our lives: A call to purity, a call to holiness, a call to resist the pressures that others put on us to conform to ways that are not of God, a call to live for Christ unashamedly