Rebelling against God quite often doesn’t start with some big thing. Sure it does sometimes, but more often than not, it begins with one or two little compromises that end up snowballing into outright rebellion.
Back in Old Testament times, God’s people were called to abstain from certain foods. Fair enough, until they’re taken captive and enslaved by the Babylonians around 586 BC. One of them, young Daniel, finds himself in King Nebuchadnezzar’s palace.
Imagine the culture shock on top of which, the Babylonians had destroyed Jerusalem and razed the Temple to the ground, declaring to the world that the God of the Israelites was defeated.
Early on in the piece, Daniel (who’s a slave at this point) faces the dilemma of whether or not to eat the food placed in front of him. Do I honour God, who looks to have been defeated, or do I go with the flow and eat the food? Let’s pick up the story:
Daniel 1:8,9 Daniel did not want to eat the king’s rich food and wine because it would make him unclean. So he asked Ashpenaz for permission not to make himself unclean in this way. God caused Ashpenaz, the man in charge of the officials, to be kind and loyal to Daniel.
Daniel decides to take a stand that could cost him his life. It took faith and courage which God rewarded through Ashpenaz.
This is a place that we find ourselves in still today. Do I go with the flow, or do I honour God and stand up for what I know is right? All too often, we’re cowered into the former, because of the terrible consequences that we imagine will flow, if we reject the world’s ways.
Listen to me. God honours those who honour Him. Take a stand.
That’s His Word. Fresh … for you … today.