TEXT: Daniel 10:1-3:
1 In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a thing was revealed unto Daniel, whose name was called Belteshazzar; and the thing was true, but the time appointed was long: and he understood the thing, and had understanding of the vision.
2 In those days I Daniel was mourning three full weeks.
3 I ate no pleasant bread, neither came flesh nor wine in my mouth, neither did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled.
Wesley L. Duewel said, “Fasting in the biblical sense is choosing not to partake of food because your spiritual hunger is so deep, your determination in intercession so intense, or your spiritual warfare so demanding that you have temporarily set aside even fleshly needs to give yourself to prayer and meditation.”
In this series, we have looked at the following ways in which we ought to follow Daniel’s example during our Daniel Fast: (1) Studying the Scripture, (2) Confessing our sins, (3) Repenting of sin, (4) Spending more time in prayer, and (5) Withdrawing from worldly pleasures.
Now, we will return to the book of Daniel and look at an earlier iteration of what has become known as the Daniel Fast where we will see even more benefits of this time of abstaining from food for spiritual reasons.. Shortly after the children of Israel arrived in Babylon, a number of young Hebrew men, primarily those who were connected to the lineage of Israel’s kings as well as those who considered “skillful and cunning,” were selected to be part of a special training school that would prepare them for service in King Nebuchadnezzar’s court. Daniel and his friends, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, were selected as a part of this group. One of the perks they received as a part of this special class was being able to eat the same meat and drink the same wine that the king ate.
However, Daniel and his friends knew that the king’s meat had been sacrificed with idols, and on top of that, the heathen nations did not follow strict rules about draining the blood from the meat before cooking it as Israel did. So, while the rest of the young men took part in the king’s feast, we read this about Daniel and his friends: “Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.” The eunuch balked at this request fearing that Daniel and his friends would fare worse than the others if he allowed this departure from the royal menu. But Daniel said, “Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink.”
“Pulse” is defined as “vegetable food” and also as “something sown.” Daniel and his friends ate only of food that came from plants and drank water for ten days. The result was “at the end of ten days their countenances appeared fairer and fatter in flesh than all the children which did eat the portion of the king’s meat.” This is just an overview of the physical benefits of the Daniel Fast — which we will get into more detail about in our next service on this topic. If you are fasting with us, you may have noticed that your complexion is clearer than it was when you began fasting. This is because your body is flushing itself of the effects of meat, sweets, and other unhealthy foods. Anytime we eat fruits and vegetables according to God’s original plan for man in the Garden of Eden, our bodies will react better and become healthier in the long term.
PRACTICAL INFORMATION REGARDING THE DANIEL FAST
This information comes from “The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life,” by Rick Warren, Dr. Daniel Amen, and Dr. Mark Hyman. Basically, the book advocates what I have suggested: taking the Daniel Fast diet and continuing it as a lifestyle. The authors write:
Consider your faith — it’s always changing, always growing, always being challenged. Sometimes you step forward. Sometimes you step back. But you know faith is a life-long race. Hebrews 12:1-2 says, “Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith.”
You have to believe you can get healthy even if you can’t see it yet. Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Faith is visualizing the future in advance. It is seeing the future in the present. Every great achievement began when somebody saw it in advance. When President John F. Kennedy issued the challenge to put a man on the moon, the technology hadn’t even been invented to do it.
The same is true when it comes to getting healthy. You look in the mirror and believe that, with God’s help, you’ll get healthy even though the person staring back at you is exhausted, stressed, out of shape, or overweight.
Now, in this series, as we focus on overcoming the sin of gluttony, and managing our bodies as God intended, we must not lose sight of the most important part of our existence — our spiritual life. Even those of you who are fit, who eat right, and who exercise regularly must still address the condition of your soul. You may keep your body in perfect condition till the day you die, but you will still die — we all will, and the only thing that will matter is the condition of your soul. Is your soul in shape? Is your soul in right standing with God?
The only way to make sure of that is to trust Jesus Christ as your Savior from sin and the consequences of sin. He alone can save your soul, put you in right standing with God, and ensure that you do not perish in Hell. Now, if you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, here is how you can trust Him today.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at [email protected] and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.