What Are Your Non-Negotiable Principles?
Soldiers do not begin to learn how to fight when they enter the battlefield. Their success in battlefield is determined by their training before the battle. In the same way, we do not prepare to overcome temptation when we find ourselves facing temptation. In our passage, which is the same as yesterday’s, I was convicted by the Holy Spirit about this particular principle that we see in the lives of these young Jews. Their decision to avoid food that defiles was an application of a decision they had previously made for their lives. Since they had been chosen for training in order to enter into the king’s service, the king itemized the menu for their diet.
The king assigned them a daily amount of food and wine from the king’s table. They were to be trained for three years, and after that they were to enter the king’s service. Daniel 1:5
Daniel and his friends did not have any problem with the training or the duration. They had a problem with the menu. While we are not given details on what kind of foods were in the menu, one thing is clear; this was food that would defile them. Daniel and his friends did not begin avoiding such foods in Babylon – this is something they had decided even before they were taken to Babylon. These young men had what I call “The Non-Negotiable.”
But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself this way. Daniel 1:8
There are numerous examples of men and women of God in the Bible who lived by this non-negotiable principle. Here are a few:
Joseph with Potiphar’s wife
So Potiphar left everything he had in Joseph’s care; with Joseph in charge, he did not concern himself with anything except the food he ate. Now Joseph was well-built and handsome, and after a while his master’s wife took notice of Joseph and said, “Come to bed with me! But he refused. “With me in charge,” he told her, “my master does not concern himself with anything in the house; everything he owns he has entrusted to my care. No one is greater in this house than I am. My master has withheld nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How then could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?” And though she spoke to Joseph day after day, he refused to go to bed with her or even be with her. Genesis 39:6-10
Joshua the successor of Moses
But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15
Samuel the prophet and priest
As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by failing to pray for you. And I will teach you the way that is good and right. 1 Samuel 12:23
King David concerning what to sacrifice to the Lord
But the king replied to Araunah, “No, I insist on paying you for it. I will not sacrifice to the Lord my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing.” So David bought the threshing floor and the oxen and paid fifty shekels of silver for them. 2 Samuel 24:24
Paul the Apostle
For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. Philippians 1:21
- What are the non-negotiable principles for your Christian life?
- Living by your non-negotiable principles is sometimes costly. This is because not everyone will understand or respect your faith in Christ. Therefore, you might end up loosing friends, a job, or a promotion.
- The answers to the following questions might help you on your endeavor to come up with the non-negotiable principles in life.
- What are some of the ways or rules you have that help you to avoid temptation from the opposite sex?
- If you are faced with a situation where it appears the only option is to lie in order to get your way, what will you do?
- If you find yourself in the company of friends who get involved in something that is not glorifying to God, what will you do? Will you give in to the peer pressure?
- How does this lesson help you today to live a better Christian life?
But Daniel resolved not to defile himself
With the royal food and wine, and
He asked the chief official for permission
Not to defile himself this way.
This was Daniel’s Non-negotiable principle
What Are Your Non-Negotiable Principles?
Read: Daniel 1:1-10
Pastor Shadrack [email protected]