And the king spake unto Ashpenaz the master of his eunuchs, that he should bring [certain] of the children of Israel, and of the king’s seed, and of the princes. Children in whom [was] no blemish, but well favoured, and skillful in all wisdom, and cunning in knowledge, and understanding science, and such as [had] ability in them to stand in the king’s palace, and whom they might teach the learning and the tongue of the Chaldeans. (Dan 1:3-4 [KJV])
I wonder how a heathen king would be so interested in the batch of young slaves for excellence in Governing his kingdom. Why would he leave his regular choice of smart young talented citizens in his highly educational influenced society and make an exceptional twist of their selection norms? What made the king imagine that there are quality of excellence among the slave batch that could contribute highly in his kingdom? In addition to that why did he consider ‘no blemish, but well favoured, and skilful in all wisdom, and cunning in knowledge, and understanding science, and such as [had] ability in them to stand in the king’s palace’ to be the right criteria for choosing the young men? What was no blemish and well favored mean to the king? I found this very interesting!
As I looked back in the nation of Israel, I read where God had declared to Moses that special tasks requires special character; special appointments came with the base criteria bestowed by God in order for the designated people to accomplish their special tasks. “And he hath filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship” (Exod 35:31 [KJV]) All of us are called to do something in saving souls, in directing the world to the savior. Doing that requires a special character, a special skill, a special commitment. That which is God given for us to be effective and efficient. It is the character of true Christianity, commitment and surrendered to Christ.
Is it possible that the king knew that there are people in Israel with special character and abilities and skills of exceptional nature? It is one thing to give instructions such as the king gave to Ashpenaz and another for him to identify those elements amidst many. God intended to make the rest of the world know who he is and that way some may acknowledge Him.
“But 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.” (Dan 1:8 [KJV]) indeed Daniel was skillful in all wisdom, canning in knowledge and understanding in management, in diplomacy in communication and in delivering what was expected of him by the worldly Kingdom but much more of the King of the Universe. Gauge your self against Daniel where would you rate on the scale of 1-10?
Time to evaluate our commitment.
By Alvin Eliamani