Healthy bodies have numerous benefits and wholesome food promotes healthy bodies. Experts say nutritious food helps keep your weight under control, makes you feel better, keeps your energy up, protects you against diseases, and helps you sleep better. I doubt if Daniel and his three friends had all these reasons in mind when they objected to eating Babylonian food. Daniel had a higher reason to reject the King’s diet. He wanted to make sure he was staying true to the Mosaic laws. He wanted to stay true his God. So he appealed to his superiors. We read in Daniel 1: “Please test us for ten days on a diet of vegetables and water… see how we look compared to the other young men who are eating the king’s food. Then make your decision in light of what you see.” The official agreed and at the end of the test, Daniel and his friends looked healthier than the others. As a result, they served the king with distinction. Doubtlessly, God honored their desire to preserve their bodies for His divine purpose. That is a good reason for us to maintain our health. God has given us bodies to fulfill His good purpose while we live on earth. If we neglect our bodies by failing to follow healthy practices of diet, rest, and exercise, we may be hindering God’s purpose for us, and for His kingdom. Of course, God may permit illness or other calamities to refine our character, or for some other purpose. But on our part, we should treat our bodies as temples of the Holy Spirit for God’s high purpose.
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