Have you ever felt like you were the only one standing firm for what you believe? Is everyone else around you conforming to the world? Daniel and his three friends were put to the test throughout the book of Daniel, yet they stood strong. They remained faithful among the faithless.
Daniel and his three friends - Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego - were taken captive to Babylon by King Nebuchadnezar while in their teens. They were trained in the language, literature and God-less lifestyle of the Babylonians, yet their faith in the true God did not waver.
Daniel encountered 3 types of people during his 70-plus years of serving in the government and these people still exist in our world today:
1) Conformers - These were people who were happy to conform to the king's commands as long as their own lives were spared and they were given what they wanted. Daniel and his friends refused to eat the king's food because it violated their Jewish beliefs. They refused to worship the king's statue of himself because by doing so would disobey God's command to "have no other gods before me." Daniel risked his life by chosing to continue to pray to his God against the king's decree. Yet, by refusing to conform to what everyone else was doing, God and man, rewarded their faithfulness. Are you a conformist in order to keep peace? Has God tested your faith lately to see how strong and how long you will stand for Him?
2) Informers - These were the people who would do and say anything to discredit Daniel and his friends because of their faithfulness to their God. They were jealous of the positions of power Daniel and his friends had been granted and took every opportunity to "inform" the king whenever his commands were not being followed. Is your faith strong enough to withstand the informers attacks in your life? God had blessed Daniel and his friends in the public eye so that others would see the reward for living a faithful life among the faithless. If they had weakend their resolve because of what the informers were saying, their testimony for God would have been erased forever.
3) Transformers - These young men never knew for sure that God would rescue them from the consequences of sticking to their convictions (the fiery furnace or the lion's den), but in order to be an example of faith and to hopefully influence the lives of the faithless around them, they chose to obey God regardless of the outcome. Every time God spared their lives, people witnessed it with their own eyes. Lives were transformed through the lives of Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. Are lives being changed because people are watching your faith in action?
Dare to be a Daniel today. Dare to stand firm in your faith, even among the faithless in your life. God blesses and rewards faithfulness. For those old enough to remember the little song we sang as kids - make this your prayer today:
"Dare to be a Daniel,
Dare to stand alone!
Dare to have a purpose firm!
Dare to make it known!" ~ Philip P. Bliss
BLOG COMMENT: Do you have an example/encouragment to share with others of when you stood faithful among the faithless? A time when your faithfulness was rewarded?