Daniel and friends Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah were Jewish captives in Babylon, specially chosen for a three-year leadership training program to serve in the king's palace. Their names and their diets were changed to honor Babylonian gods.
But the courageous four continued to worship their God. They secured the guard's agreement to a ten-day dietary test: they would eat vegetables and drink water rather than drinking wine and eating the royal food which had been offered to idols and violated their God's wise dietary laws. God blessed their faithfulness, and at the end of the ten-day test they looked healthier and better nourished than those who ate the royal food. After following this diet for three years they were ten times wiser than the other trainees.
healthy food supply has also been changed -- genetically modified, grown with toxic chemicals, and offered on the altar of corporate greed. Even "scientific studies" are subtly twisted to justify the god of greed. The earth is being depleted in minerals, food is depleted in nutrients, and human health is threatened.
How would Daniel and friends respond to this challenge?
Methinks they would first choose between the god of greed and the God of Justice. They would humbly assert that the earth belongs to God who made it and humans are stewards. Good stewardship of the earth entails justice for the earth and all living things. Daniel and friends would say "no thank you" to Franken-phude and take responsibility for their own food supply. They would embrace new ways of growing organic food in a small amount of space -- vertical gardening, deck gardening, and community-based agriculture. They would eat more vegetables and drink purified water. God would bless them and they would grow healthier and wiser.
In the springtime Daniel's challenge is an invitation to work hand in hand with God in planting, watering and nurturing organic plants. With God's blessing a bountiful harvest will be shared, and everyone will be healthier and wiser.