There was this king – Nebuchadnezzar (how would you like to have that name?) whose job it was to capture the choicest of the Israelites to serve in the King’s court.  The requirements for this job were that the young men be: princes, youths, physically unblemished, handsome in appearance, skillful in wisdom and knowledge, proficient in the sciences and refined and polished.

Only four met these qualifications, including one man named Daniel and three of his brothers, and this whole process took place during the Greek period 600 BC when the sciences gave birth to an explosion of mathematics, metallurgy, anatomy, astrology, and more.

The king had ordered that these young men be given the king’s portion of food and drink, only these four refused this order because they honored the Jewish Mosaic law – and so they were ordered to be killed!

However, God had given favor to Daniel and he declared to the king that he and his brothers would be just as robust on their own diet as the diet offered to them by the king.  In Daniel 1:14-16 it says after 10 days of eating their own diet, these guys did appear fairer and fatter in flesh than others who ate the king’s meat.  How about that!  And then they were given pulse.

What in the heck was pulse?  I’m glad you asked. Pulse was a mixture of seeds, including veggies and grains, a sort of health food of the day.

This chapter then closes with the king finding out that none could compare to Daniel and his brothers, and he found them 10 times better than the magicians and astrologers in all of his realm!  God had preserved these four faithful men, blessed them mightily in physical, mental and spiritual strength and now seated them in high places in the king’s court – and they continued to remain faithful to God.

So what’s the big deal about this story of these four young men? 

  • They rejected the culture surrounding them in favor of adhering to God’s ways and not man’s orders.

  • Even in captivity, these men continued to excel and flourish and even influence others (much like the story of Joseph!)

  • When the pressure is on, when life is tough, we can stand in our faith and stay faithful to God, knowing that he rewards those who do!


Pretty cool ending to a story about four young men and their refusal to eat the king’s meat.


Pulse and Peas
by Debbie Haynes

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