Special Testimonies for Ministers and Workers—No. 9


Daniel and His Brethren

Why did Daniel and his companions refuse to eat at the king's table? Why did they refuse his meats and wines?—Because they had been taught that this class of food would not keep the mind or the physical structure in the very best condition of health to do God's service. These youth urged most earnestly that the one who had charge of their food should not compel them to partake of the king's luxuries, or drink of his wine. They begged him to try them ten days only, and then examine them, and decide by their physical appearance whether their abstemious diet would be to their disadvantage. When they came in for examination, the result was decidedly in their favor. SpTA09 60.1

It was otherwise with the youth who had eaten of the luxuries of the king's table, and drank of his wine. The clear sparkle of the eye was gone, the ruddy, healthful glow had disappeared from the countenance. The four Hebrew captives were thereafter permitted to have the diet they had chosen. What effect did it have upon mind and character? They had conscientiously refused the stimulus of flesh and of wine. They obeyed God's will in self-denial, and he showed his approval. He desired his servants to honor him by their adherence to steadfast principle in all their habits of life. Their countenances would be a certificate of physical soundness and moral purity. SpTA09 60.2

“And as for these four children. God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.” These youth had the Lord as their educator. The golden links of the chain of heaven connected the finite with the infinite. They were partakers of the divine nature. They were very careful to keep themselves in touch with God. They prayed and studied and brought into their practical life strictly conscientious, humble minds. They walked with God as did Enoch. The word of the Lord was their meat and their drink. “And in all matters of wisdom and understanding, that the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers that were in all his realm.” SpTA09 60.3

In the light of this Scripture history, all the testimony of man as to the advantages of a meat diet, or of a great variety of food, should not have the least weight with any human being. When the children of faith shall with earnest prayer dedicate themselves to God without reserve, the Lord will honor their faith, and will bless them with a clear mind. Those who at every step are murmuring and complaining, ambitious for more power and greater responsibility, show that they cannot carry responsibilities; and the Lord has been pleased to tell them this. They have thought it all a mistake, and have been determined to show the Lord that they could be managers of the first class. But God's word never returns to him void, and when he reveals the deep and secret things, he makes no mistake. He knows what is in the darkness, and the light dwells with him. The Lord has said, Those that honor me I will honor. SpTA09 61.1