king’s meat or King’s meat
by Parthens – 11/26/2013
It wasn’t enough for King Nebuchadnezzar simply to have conquered the Hebrews geographically, as it’s obvious that the next thing on his mind was assimilation: little by little to rid the Hebrews of their God through the gateway of steeping them in “the learning and the tongue of the Chaldeans,” starting with Israel’s most influential citizens. This is the equivalent of Abraham returning to Ur of the Chaldees, or Mrs. Eddy converting back to the Congregationalism of her past, or her followers today comfortably conforming to “a form of godliness, denying the power thereof.”
Nebuchadnezzar’s decree that Daniel and his friends eat “the king’s meat,” is symbolic of error’s authoritarianism attempting to change the Christian’s appetite for the true bread of life, to replace “immortal cravings” for mortal (RR 2,9), to forsake Soul for sense. Daniel and his friends were not impressed by this fancy, “generous” offer, and refused to yield. Their infinite hunger for God, their passion to expand their capacity for God, their cleaving to God in non-violent resistance paid off, for all in the king’s palace were impressed by the results of Daniel’s simple diet (“pulse” is symbolic of the unleavened simplicity of Christ).
But error was not through yet. When Daniel’s friends refused to bow before the image of the king, they were thrown into the furnace, which did not harm them in the least. At this point, a complete destruction and reversal of error occurred on a huge scale: instead of commanding Israel to embrace the ways of Babylon, the king commanded that all of Babylon worship the one, true, living God.
Like Joshua, Gideon, and Jehosaphat before them, Daniel and his friends were without sword, spear, or material weapon of any kind, and yet, their indomitable love for God took captive an entire civilization that was bent on taking them captive! Also, the principle of God’s using just a tiny few rather than a multitude to change the course of civilization gives greater glory to God, and this should be encouraging to the remnant of Christian Scientists in the earth today.