Monday, March 5, 2012

Daniel's Name Stuck

I never would have believed I’d live to see the day our government would require the church to violate its teachings. However, that is exactly what we are seeing the Federal Government do with regard to contraception and abortion.

ObamaCare carries a mandate that all religious organizations must provide birth control, including paying for abortion for their employees. It is clear this president envisions a society where God is not acknowledged. He clearly believes that the government is the ultimate arbitrator of what is right or wrong.

I joined my name this week to a petition along with thousands of other religious leaders who refuse to abide by this mandate. We view this as an attack on God’s standards. Even though we are aware that anyone who dissents is portrayed as a bigot, we choose to follow our convictions. Regardless of the fallout, we are required by our commitment to follow the Scriptures.

I was thinking of Daniel this week, who certainly would have signed this petition. He was just a young man when he was taken into captivity by Nebuchadnezzar’s army. Upon arrival in Babylon, he was enrolled in academic training for three years to learn the language and literature of the Babylonians so they could change his world view.  They started by changing Daniel’s name to Belteshazzar. They may have changed his name, but they didn’t change Daniel. They attempted to make him forget his faith, but they failed because Daniel remained true to his God.

When his parents gave him the name Daniel, they communicated what the name meant: “God is my judge.” They taught him to always remember that God was the one he would ultimately give an account to and not man. These parents sent a sharp weapon into the land of Babylon when their son was taken captive.

I am convinced that those who are committed to following the Scriptures are going to have to stand up against oppression, even coercion, from our own government. Let us take courage because if a man named Daniel remained true to his principles, we can too. Daniel’s name stuck through several successive kingdoms. He is regarded by all those kings as Daniel and not by his Babylonian name. It stuck because Daniel lived up to the meaning of his name.

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