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Resolve 7/20/15 The Word of God is alive with fascinating plots and entertaining characters. Many of the stories are more scandalous than a new blockbuster hit. Though some stories may seem irrelevant to our lives, Hebrews 4:12 promises that God’s Word is “living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” With a bit of help from the Holy Spirit, a text from the Bible may seem to speak straight to you.

One such connection comes in the book of Daniel. The land of Judah had been exiled to Babylon. Daniel, along with other young Israelites, was summoned to serve in King Nebuchadnezzar’s palace. A quick look at Daniel 1:4 shows us what was esteemed in the Babylonian culture. Youth, beauty, and intelligence were highlighted as the most prized virtues. Sound familiar?

We live in a Babylonian society. Babylon offered excess. Abundant choices lay at the tip of our fingertips. Babylon promoted self. Commercials blare to us, “you deserve it.” Babylon encouraged residents to think first and foremost of their own desires. Does our culture endorse anything different?

As sons and daughters of the True King, we must seek to live with purpose and light in a culture that wants to poison us. This is a task that can seem overwhelming. Or perhaps, it is a task that doesn’t seem to cross our minds? Friends, if we desire not to get stuck in the pride trap that our culture has created, we must do it with incredible resolve. If we sit back and do nothing, excess and self-centeredness will overwhelm us.

Daniel 1:8 says, “But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine.” He was living in luxury, offered the finest of food and clothes, yet he chose the life of Godliness as more important. Daniel refused fine food, eating vegetables instead. In verse 17, we see God’s pleasure with his choice. “To these four young men God gave knowledge and understanding of all kinds of literature and learning. And Daniel could understand visions and dreams of all kinds.”

God has chosen you to live in this world, among this culture. But let’s remember what Kingdom we belong to. Like Daniel, let’s resolve to keep our integrity and true identity.

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