To trust and obey God seems a lot easier said than done, but even in a new place under circumstances he may not have foreseen, Daniel and his friends are a great example of obedience. God gave Daniel and his friends strength to obey Him when they were serving King Nebuchadnezzar in Babylon. Follow along with this devotion, which you can walk through with your family in 10-15 minutes one night this week or review it in 3-5 minutes over the course of the week.
KEY VERSE – DAY ONE:
Review the key verses and hand motions for this unit with your children.
“May the name of God be praised forever and ever, for wisdom and power belong to Him.” – Daniel 2:20
BIG PICTURE QUESTION – DAY ONE:
Ask your children the Big Picture Question for this unit: How can we obey God? We trust God to give us strength to obey Him.
MAIN POINT – DAY ONE:
Share with your children that this week’s main point is Daniel obeyed God by not eating the king’s food.
BIBLE PASSAGE – DAY TWO:
This week’s Bible story comes from Daniel 1. This story can be found on page 140 of the Big Picture Interactive Bible Storybook. Take some time now to read these passages with your children or you can refer to the Bible story summary below!
BIBLE STORY SUMMARY:
Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, went with his army to Judah. Because God’s people had sinned against Him, God allowed King Nebuchadnezzar to take over the city of Jerusalem.
King Nebuchadnezzar told one of his leaders to bring some of the people to Babylon. He wanted boys who were healthy, handsome, and good learners to serve in his palace.
Every day, King Nebuchadnezzar gave the boys a special diet. They ate the same food and drank the same drinks that the king ate and drank.
Four of the boys who came from Judah were different than the others. They worshiped the Lord, the one true God. Their names were Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.
Even though Daniel and his friends weren’t in Judah anymore, Daniel still wanted to obey God. God’s laws told Daniel what he could and could not eat. Daniel was not allowed to eat some of the food that the king gave the boys. Daniel asked the man in charge for permission to eat other foods, but the man in charge was afraid.
“If you don’t eat the king’s food, you won’t be strong like the other young men. The king might get angry and kill me!” he said.
Daniel said, “Try this for 10 days. Let us eat only vegetables and drink only water. Then see if we are healthier than the other young men.”
The guard agreed. At the end of 10 days, Daniel and his friends looked healthier than the young men who had eaten the king’s food. After that, the guard allowed Daniel and his friends to keep drinking water and eating vegetables.
God was happy that Daniel obeyed Him. God blessed Daniel and his friends. He made them wise and smart. God gave Daniel the ability to understand visions and dreams. When their training was over, Daniel and his friends stood before the king. The king saw that they were smarter and stronger than all the other young men. They were even smarter than the wise men who worked for the king. Daniel served the king for many years.
REVIEW QUESTIONS – DAY THREE:
After reading the Bible story or going through the summary, ask your children these review questions:
- What kind of boys did the king want to serve him? (healthy, handsome, good learners)
- How were the four boys from Judah different? (they served God)
- What did Daniel and his friends eat that was different? (they refused the king’s royal food and ate only vegetables and drank only water)
- How do we know that God was pleased with Daniel’s obedience? (God blessed Daniel and his friends, made them smart, gave them the ability to understand special things, and gave them favor with the king)
- How can we obey God? (We trust God to give us strength to obey Him)
WORSHIP – DAY FOUR:
CHRIST CONNECTION – DAY FIVE:
It’s amazing to see how things that happened in the Old Testament are connected to the New Testament and the Gospel – the good news that Jesus came to Earth to die for our sins because of His love for us. These Christ connections show us that God has been preparing us for a relationship with Jesus since the beginning of time.
Daniel chose to obey God no matter what, and God blessed Daniel and his friends. In an even greater way, Jesus always obeyed God. He came to earth and followed God’s plan to save sinners. Jesus never sinned, but He died the death we deserve. Jesus rose from the dead, and those who trust in Him receive God’s forgiveness and blessing.
PRAY – DAY FIVE:
Pray this prayer: God, You call us to obey You in everything we say and do. Please give us the strength to obey You at home, at school, and everywhere in between. Thank you for showing us what it means to obey You and for sending Jesus to die on the cross for us. Amen.