The Upward Look


Let This Mind Be in You, March 10

Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: but made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men. Philippians 2:5-7. UL 83.1

Daniel was but a youth when carried away captive into Babylon. He was about fifteen or sixteen years old, for he is called a child, which means that he was in his youth. Why did Daniel refuse to eat at the king's luxurious table? Why did he refuse the use of wine as his beverage, when it was at the king's command that it was placed before him? He knew that by use wine would become to him a pleasant thing, and would be preferred before water. UL 83.2

Daniel could have argued that at the royal table and at the king's command, there was no other course for him to pursue. But he and his fellows had a council together. They canvassed the entire subject as to how they would improve their physical and mental powers by the use of wine. They studied this subject most diligently. The wine of itself, they decided, was a snare. They were acquainted with the history of Nadab and Abihu, which had come to them in parchments. In these men the use of wine had encouraged their love for it. They drank wine before their sacred service in the sanctuary. Their senses were confused. They could not distinguish the difference between the sacred and the common fire. In their brain-benumbed state they did that which the Lord had charged all who served in holy office not to do. They put the common fire upon their censers, when they had been expressly charged to use only the sacred fire of the Lord's own kindling, that never went out.... UL 83.3

A second consideration of these youthful captives was that the king always asked a blessing before his meals, and addressed his idols as deity. He set apart a portion of his food, and also a portion of his wine to be presented to the idol gods whom he worshiped. This act, according to their religious instruction, consecrated the whole to the heathen god. To sit at the table where such idolatry was practiced, Daniel and his three brethren deemed, would be a dishonor to the God of heaven. These four children decided that they could not sit at the king's table, to eat of the food placed there, or to partake of the wine, all of which had been dedicated to an idol god.... There was no presumption with these youth, but a firm love for truth and righteousness. They did not choose to be singular, but they must be, else they would corrupt their ways in the courts of Babylon.—Manuscript 122, March 10, 1897, “Daniel.” UL 83.4