But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine. (Dan. 1:8)
Expanded Passage: Daniel 1:8
Recently I had the opportunity to visit the Royal Palace in Oslo, Norway, shortly before Princess Ingrid Alexandra celebrated her eighteenth birthday. The table in the banqueting hall was set just as it would be on that day, complete with lavish place settings and floral arrangements. The menu for the celebration consisted of scallops, pickled ginger, elderflower, petite-pois puree and butter sauce. Dessert was strawberries and ice cream. We all departed wishing we could have just a taste of that delicious spread!
Daniel, a healthy young man with a healthy appetite, was presented with the best food and drink imaginable. Stronger than his appetite, however, was his desire to remain faithful—faithful to his culture and upbringing, and most importantly, faithful to his God. Daniel knew that by partaking of this food that included ceremonially-unclean animals and had been sacrificed to idols, he would be defiling himself, which would impact his relationship with God. Therefore, Daniel resolved—he was set, determined, purposed—to stay faithful to who God called him to be, even when that meant going against the norms of the society in which he lived.
Daniel didn’t want anything to get in the way of his relationship with God. With his purpose clear, he knew how to respond in times of testing. His resolve was set firmly in relationship, and that is even sweeter than strawberries and ice cream.
Resolve today to put your relationship with God first.
Jenn Petersen is an ordained minister in The Wesleyan Church, Director of Mobilization NYC for International Justice Mission, and co-founder/pastor of Resurrection Life NYC in Manhattan.
© 2023 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission. Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.