The Light of Christ Journey

Encouraging people on their journey with Christ

Opinion | The Dying Art of Disagreement - The New York Times

Daniel 1: Daniel made up his mind to eat and drink only what God had approved for his people to eat. And he asked the king’s chief official for permission not to eat the food and wine served in the royal palace. God had made the official friendly and kind to Daniel. 10 But the man still told him, “The king has decided what you must eat and drink. And I am afraid he will kill me, if you eat something else and end up looking worse than the other young men.”

11 The king’s official had put a guard in charge of Daniel and his three friends. So Daniel said to the guard, 12 “For the next ten days, let us have only vegetables and water at mealtime. 13 When the ten days are up, compare how we look with the other young men, and decide what to do with us.” 14 The guard agreed to do what Daniel had asked.

15 Ten days later, Daniel and his friends looked healthier and better than the young men who had been served food from the royal palace. 16 After this, the guard let them eat vegetables instead of the rich food and wine.[1]

Daniel reveals his character in his request for a dietary change from the official. He is respectful and winsome. The official fears the king, but Daniel and his friends fear God. When the official refuses to listen, Daniel doesn’t argue but moves to plan B. Daniel begins to reason with the guard. Daniel doesn’t force the guard into a corner but shrewdly and tactfully ends his suggestion with a statement that suggests the guard should make the final decision. The guard is willing to agree to Daniel’s suggested trial run.

God would have also gone ahead of Daniel as we see this in Proverbs 16:When we please the Lord, even our enemies make friends with us.[2] Daniel didn’t have to give up his convictions and his manner allowed God to bless him.

How do we reveal our character and faith when we disagree with the world? Much of our social media contains arguments and angry disagreements. Is this how we, as followers of Jesus, want to be known? Why not follow the example of Daniel as we come into disagreement with the world?

To hear more about Daniel and his situation, listen here:

[1,2] Contemporary English Version (CEV) Copyright © 1995 by American Bible Society

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