As I have been studying the book of Daniel I have found interesting information concerning Daniel's challenges. Let's take a quick look at it. Daniel chapter 1 verse 5 says "the king appointed for them a daily provision of the king’s delicacies and of the wine which he drank, and three years of training for them, so that at the end of that time they might serve before the king." [The New King James Version. (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982)] The king begins a three year program of feeding and training for Daniel and his three friends. Of course we know that Daniel stands up against taking anything from the table of the king; but the Scriptures in this chapter say nothing of them rejecting the three years of training.
This training was for the purpose of motivating them to "understand, agree, and lead" others to follow the ways of the king. A modern day term for this would be brainwashing. Instead of forcing the Israelites to follow, the king would develop the minds of the captive's leaders who would hopefully lead their people to follow the king.
Today we are faced with similar challenges. Our schools are teaching Naturalism, Darwinism, and other theories pressing students to embrace them as facts. Immediate reactions include statements such as:
- Do I really have to read this stuff?
- I don't believe in these theories therefore I don't want to take these classes.
- Why are these theories taught as if they were facts?
As for these four young men, God gave them knowledge and skill in all literature and wisdom; and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams. Now at the end of the days, when the king had said that they should be brought in, the chief of the eunuchs brought them in before Nebuchadnezzar. Then the king interviewed them, and among them all none was found like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah; therefore they served before the king. And in all matters of wisdom and understanding about which the king examined them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers who were in all his realm. [Daniel 1:17-21 The New King James Version. (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982).]
If a person is founded in God's Word and is seeking Him daily in his life, then the challenges presented can be easily overcome. Instead of running from the opposition, use these times to learn and grow in understanding of God's wisdom. When faced with a question that is difficult to answer or understand, then dive deeper into God's Word. Just like Daniel, God can supply you in knowledge and skill in all literature and wisdom to debate the opposition, but we must seek Him first.