I dramatized and it is most entertaining, but I'm trying to give you as distinct and as direct an explanation of what we're looking at here in the book of Daniel as possible. So, one of the first acts of Babylon is to take the leading figures in Jerusalem amongst the Jewish people and to export them to Babylon to retrain them and then eventually send them back to their homeland as representatives of this new Babylonian culture and this new Babylonian power. In this case, there are young men who are members of the royal family. They are the members of the

king's household back in Judah. And that is who is taken and brought to Babylon to be retrained and acculturated into the ways and the culture of Babylon. Now, let me just kind of pause here and widen our lens for just a minute here and help you see and understand something here. This tactic, this strategy of the Babylonians

to take the leading figures of a conquered people to bring them to Babylon and to retrain them in the ways of Babylon. That's a totally different approach than what foreign powers had done in the past. In the case of Assyria, they did not bring people back to their capital to and retrain them. They didn't bring them to Nineveh, but rather their men, their soldiers, the members of the army would have relations with the women of the conquered people and the children that would be produced by the Assyrian soldiers and the women of the conquered

people. They became integrated. They became a part of the Assyrian Empire because they had the seed, they had the DNA of their conquerors. Now, in the case of the Northern Kingdom, the offsprings, the children of the Assyrian soldiers and the Israeli women or the women from Israel, those offsprings were Samaritans. Yes, the Samaritans that we hear about in the New Testament. The good Samaritan, the woman at the well, one of the 10 lepers who came back and said, thank you to Jesus. They were all Samaritans. And the Samaritans were the offspring of these Assyrian soldiers

Israel that had come together and had produced children. Now, that was the tactic of the Assyrians, to keep subject the people who they invaded and conquered. I'm careful not to say they intermarried with them, but they had children by those people. The thought being that if the Assyrians were their fathers, they would not rise up

in rebellion and revolution against those who were their family. So, that had been the tactic of the Assyrians. Now, when we turn to the Babylonians, that was not the tactic, nor was that the strategy of the Babylonians. The Babylonians wanted to remain separate. They wanted to continue to isolate the people they conquered and they wanted to subjugate them. So in this case, they took the leading figures from Judah,

more specifically from Jerusalem, brought them to Babylon, forced them into servitude and sought to retrain them in the ways of Babylon, erasing the culture, the identity, watch this, and even the religion that they had left behind. And so, Daniel, Hananiah, Azariah, and Mishael are four of these individuals who have come from Jerusalem, members of the royal family and household of Judah, who have been brought, taken hostage and captive and brought to Babylon to learn the ways of their Babylonian conquerors.

were Daniel, Azariah, and Ananiah, and Mishael. And it is Daniel early on, and we'll find this in the first chapter of Daniel, who actually questions, he makes an inquiry, the food that you're going to sustain us with, where did that food come from? And of course, he is by the lead servant in the household of the Babylonians, that the meat has been raised on the king's grass, the wine. Very well, they include the blood of other conquered and manufactured for meat to have been raised

on the king's property. Well, that is a major problem for these Hebrew boys because as far back as Moses, remember Moses gave the people of God 600 dietary laws and 147 statutory laws and 10 commandments and part of their spiritual makeup was a refusal to partake of unclean meats of which the meats that were in Babylon were considered unclean. Now remember, watch this

beloved, watch this. The reason they are there in the first place is because they had not kept covenant with God. And so they did not want to worsen their situation by continuing not to keep covenant with God. And Daniel makes this inquiry and he says to his Babylonian captors, as an option to you feeding us meat from the king's table, let's take just 10 days and just give us fruits and vegetables and water. Now, the Babylonian captives were somewhat afraid that if these boys who had come from Jerusalem had withered away because they had not been properly fed, then Ashpenaz, who was the chief servant, he very

well might lose his life. But it's the recommendation of Daniel. Watch where I'm going, beloved. It's the recommendation of Daniel that for just 10 days, rather than us eat the food us, allow us to eat just vegetables, just fruit, and just water. Now, today, this is referred to as the Daniel fast. And you see here on the screen exactly what that consisted of. But the reason behind that is that Daniel, along with the three Hebrew boys, did not want to contaminate or pollute themselves with unclean foods that came from Babylon. And so, it was the suggestion, it was the recommendation of Daniel that they

feed themselves on just fruit, vegetables, and water. And then at the end of the 10 days, fast, compare their stamina, their strength, their health with those who had eaten food from the king's table. And of course, at the end of the 10 days, it was abundantly clear that the health and the status of these Hebrew boys was far superior to those who had eaten food from the king's table. Watch this. And as a result of that, as a result of that distinction and difference and variance between those who had sustained themselves with vegetables,

fruit and water against those who had eaten from the King's table, it was so successful, so superior until Daniel and the Hebrew boys were allowed to continue to sustain themselves and to feed themselves with fruits, vegetables, and water, as opposed to the foods from the King's table. Now, I'm sure many of you currently see these commercials about fruits and vegetables. They are tablets or they're vitamins. And every time I see that commercial, I can't help but think of Daniel because it was Daniel who resorted to fruits and vegetables and water as a substitute for the foods that the Babylonians would have given them. And so

this is the first interaction between these Hebrew boys inclusive of Daniel along with chapters in Babylon.

Transcribed with Cockatoo

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