“But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself…” – Daniel 1:8 (NKJV)
What is offered does not have to be taken. Even when it has been set forth by the king, the supreme ruler over those held captive in Babylon, there is a way to say: “No way.”
The king set up a daily provision for the youth of Judah that he held captive. He established this “daily provision” based upon what worked for his people and what he understood culturally about his own people, not his captives. We have to understand that this was a carefully designed and devised plan to assimilate these young men with the culture of their captors.
Yet, Daniel purposed in his heart to stand up and say no.
Daniel’s Refusal (v.8)
“But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank. . .” (Daniel 1:8, NKJV)
Daniel found inner strength and conviction within his heart first. Daniel sought to remain pure; he understood that the Babylonian delicacies would lead to his defilement
Daniel’s Request (v.8, 12)
“Please test your servants for ten days, and let them give us vegetables to eat and water to drink.” (v. 12)
Daniel knew who to talk to and make his request. We need to teach our children and youth how to take a stand without causing more problems for themselves.
Divine Results (vv. 15-16)
“And at the end of ten days their features appeared better and fatter in flesh than all the young men who ate the portion of the king’s delicacies.” (v. 15)
Your refusal to be defiled can lead to some divine results. By giving God the time to work on you, He can cleanse you both physically and spiritually. Regardless of the circumstances or conditions, we must settle the matter in our hearts first. In our hearts, we must decide that we will stay true to God. No virgin retains her purity without commitment and conviction. No athlete conditions and trains for a race without sacrifice and avoiding temptation. The attitude must precede the action that leads to the accomplishment.
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Posted in blessings, books, business, glory, growth, honor, humility, prayer, territory, tagged blessings, business, glory, honor, ministry, prayer, protection, provision on July 21, 2010|
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Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request.- 1 Chronicles 4:10 (NIV)
Jabez’s prayer became quite popularized some years ago when a book by the same name was written by Dr. Bruce Wilkinson. The whole phenomena went off wildly beyond the book itself, with t-shirts, Bible covers, journals, and the like. What is amazing about the whole Jabez craze was the focus so many put on enlarging their territory rather than identifying what made Jabez the character stand out from among his brethren.
Verse 9 tells us that Jabez was “more honorable than his brothers.” That speaks volumes when you see that his mother named him for her pain during giving birth to him. We do not have to study and search too deep to know that this verse alone shows that Jabez was not living out a self-fulling prophecy based upon his naming. Jabez cried to the Lord and was blessed because the Scriptures tell us that “God granted his request.” Many of us would love to simply had that phrase alone attached to the story of our lives.
Are you seeking to enlarge your territory? I looked at these two verses and saw the simplicity of what God does with us when we are honorable and humble.
Enlarge your territory like Jabez. The prerequisite is to start off by not allowing circumstances or conditions to dictate your outlook. Your outlook can influence the outcome. What do I mean? Your perception of how things are and how things turn out can impact how you live with situations in your life.
Live an honorable and humble life regardless of how others are acting around you. Be sure to keep your eye on the prize without stepping on and over everyone on your way to the top. Failing to be humble and honorable can cost you.
Ask God for what you want and need. You need His provision as well as His protection. Before you go to God, see how He will get the glory from blessing you. God may not be blessing you right now. He may be trying to see what’s the benefit if He blesses you.
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