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May 19, 2024


Book of Daniel


Daniel 1:1-21

Seldom in history has there been a more urgent need for heroes---for young men and women of strong righteous character---than today.  We live in a time of rank immorality, wickedness, injustice, oppression, and greed, a time when few individuals step forth to take a stand for justice and righteousness.  Daniel was born into such an environment, an age of terrible immorality, lawlessness, and violence when there was little justice or righteousness on earth.  Yet he rose above it all.  Despite the temptations and the enticements of a vastly different culture, Daniel was strong for the LORD, even in the face of death.

The story of Daniel teaches us that we can serve God faithfully no matter what circumstances are around us.  No one can control you or make you sin.  No one can take away your faith no matter how hard they try.   I hope that the study of Daniel will encourage you to stand strong in an unstable world!

Compromise is defined as: a settlement of differences by mutual concessions; an agreement reached by adjustment of conflicting or opposing principles or standards.

Often, life is filled with compromises.  We are given a choice as to how we will live our lives and what path we are going to follow through life.  When we come to these times of decision, it is imperative that we make godly choices.  Because the choices we make at the crossroads of life will determine our usefulness to God and our effectiveness in His kingdom work.

We as Christians, should resolve to live a principled life: a moral and ethical life.

Our text today is about four young men who came to a time of decision in their lives.  They could either compromise and go with the flow, or they could stand their ground and live for the Lord.  The circumstances they faced and the decisions they made set the course for the rest of their lives.  Since this incident occurred, the names of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego have stood tall as the names of great heroes of the faith.  And, what about Daniel?  Who would ever have heard of Daniel if he had compromised at this early stage of life?  Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego stood their test of compromise, held their ground, and as a result, we are all blessed this morning.  Today, I would like to preach on the subject, CONQUERING COMPROMISE!!


I.               THE PROBLEMS AT HAND v. 1-7


A.   Several problems were faced by these Hebrew boys.  These problems had the potential to derail them and lead them off on a spiritual turnaround.  Remember, the problems they faced were not that different from those we face daily in our world.


1.    A New Home v. 1-2 – These boys were brought up in and around Jerusalem.  They knew the Word of God because of the priests and scribes teaching, the prophets were preaching the message of Jehovah.  Now, they are in captivity (slaves) and being hauled away off to Babylon. Nebuchadnezzar had a policy of separation.   When we separate from our Christian culture, we are opening ourselves to the possibility of compromise.  It is easy to compromise when we are away from the influence of godliness. 


2.    New Knowledge v. 3-4 – Nebuchadnezzar had a policy to educate and mold young leaders.  He had to secure their loyalty.  These boys were taught a new language and new ways of looking at life.


3.    New Diet v. 5 – All their lives these boys live in accordance to the dietary laws handed down by the Lord.  If these young men had ate the pagan food, they felt that it would have defiled them, and made them unclean before the Lord.  As Christians, we too are faced with choices that run contrary to the best that God had purposed for us.



4.    New Names v. 6-7 – Also, when these young men arrived in Babylon, there was a policy of changed names. 

a.    Daniel – God is my judge, to Belteshazzar – “Bel will protect.”

b.    Hananiah – God is gracious, to Shadrach – “Inspiration of the Sun.”

c.     Mishael – God is without equal to Meshach – “Belonging to Aku.”

d.    Azariah – The Lord is my helper, to Abednego – Servant of Nego.”

By changing their names, Nebuchadnezzar goal was to erase their attachment to their nation, in regard to their identity and the way they think.

Even though their names were changed, their character remained intact.  The world and the devil will try every tactic to force us to fit into their mold.  Do not compromise!

C.    Remember, the world and the devil are going to try their best to get you to change your standards and boundaries.  Make the right decisions.


II.             THE PURPOSE OF THEIR HEARTS v 8-16


A.   Their Dedication v. 8 – Nebuchadnezzar could change their homes, their diet, their names, and their education, but he could never change their hearts!  But Daniel purposed in his heart to remain faithful.  They were determined with a made-up mind to be steadfast to the end.  The idea is that Daniel and his friends have established clear boundaries they will not cross.

B.    Their Desire v. 9-14 -   In an effort to maintain their ceremonial purity before the Lord, they requested that they not be forced to eat the king’s meat. 

C.    The main point in this section of the text is that these boys had a made-up mind to follow the Lord to the end.  We need to be just like these Hebrew boys have a made-up mind to follow Christ!




A.   The Experience v. 15-16 – The appearance and health of Daniel and his friends looked better at the end of the ten days than the others.  God will be absolutely faithful to honor His Word and His servants who trust in Him.

B.    The Excellence – v. 17-20 – Daniel and his friends’ faithfulness was richly rewarded by God.

1.    God gave all four men intellectual ability.

2.    God gave Daniel the gift of visions and dreams.

3.    God gave the gift of special recognition by Nebuchadnezzar.

·      The king interviewed and found them superior.

·      The king assigned them to leadership positions in his government.

·      The king judged their counsel to be ten times better than all the other royal advisors.


We must be faithful in living for the LORD.  No matter how much pressure people may put upon us to compromise, we must stand fast and not give in to the seduction of sin.  No matter how appealing, attractive or enticing the urge may be, we must take a strong stand for the LORD!



Responsive Reading: Daniel 1:1-21






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