The Choice Young Men1 In the third year of the reign of a Jehoiakim king of Judah b Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it. 2 The c Lord gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, along with some of the d vessels of the house of God; and he brought them to the land of e Shinar, to the house of his ▼
▼ Or godsgod, and he brought the vessels into the treasury of his ▼
▼ Or gods, h god. 3 Then the king ▼
▼ Or said toordered Ashpenaz, the chief of his ▼
▼ Or eunuchs, and so throughout the chofficials, to bring in some of the sons of Israel, including some of the ▼
▼ Lit seed of theroyal l family and of the nobles, 4 youths in whom was m no defect, who were good-looking, showing n intelligence in every branch of wisdom, endowed with understanding and discerning knowledge, and who had ability for ▼
▼ Lit standingserving in the king’s ▼
▼ Lit palacecourt; and he ordered him to teach them the ▼
▼ Or writingliterature and r language of the s Chaldeans. 5 The king appointed for them a daily ration from the t king’s choice food and from the wine which he drank, and appointed that they should be ▼
▼ Or rearededucated three years, at the end of which they were to ▼
▼ Lit stand before the king, w enter the king’s personal service. 6 Now among them from the sons of Judah were x Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. 7 Then the commander of the officials assigned new names to them; and to Daniel he assigned the name y Belteshazzar, to Hananiah z Shadrach, to Mishael aa Meshach and to Azariah ab Abed-nego.
Daniel’s Resolve8 But Daniel ▼
▼ Lit set upon his heartmade up his mind that he would not ad defile himself with the ae king’s choice food or with the af wine which he drank; so he sought permission from the commander of the officials that he might not defile himself. 9 Now God granted Daniel ▼
▼ Lit lovingkindness, ah favor and compassion in the sight of the commander of the officials, 10 and the commander of the officials said to Daniel, “I am afraid of my lord the king, who has appointed your food and your drink; for why should he see your faces looking more haggard than the youths who are your own age? Then you would ▼
▼ Lit make my head guiltymake me forfeit my head to the king.” 11 But Daniel said to the overseer whom the commander of the officials had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah, 12 “Please test your servants for ten days, and let us be aj given some vegetables to eat and water to drink. 13 “Then let our appearance be ▼
▼ Lit seenobserved in your presence and the appearance of the youths who are eating the king’s choice food; and deal with your servants according to what you see.” 14 So he listened to them in this matter and tested them for ten days. 15 At the end of ten days their appearance seemed al better and ▼
▼ Lit fat of fleshthey were fatter than all the youths who had been eating the king’s choice food. 16 So the overseer continued to ▼
▼ Lit take awaywithhold their choice food and the wine they were to drink, and kept ao giving them vegetables. 17 As for these four youths ap God gave them knowledge and intelligence in every branch of ▼
▼ Or writingliterature and wisdom; Daniel even understood all kinds of ar visions and dreams. 18 Then at the end of the days which the king had ▼
▼ Lit saidspecified ▼
▼ Lit to bring them infor presenting them, the commander of the officials ▼
▼ Lit brought inpresented them before Nebuchadnezzar. 19 The king talked with them, and out of them all not one was found like av Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah; so they ▼
▼ Lit stood before the king, ax entered the king’s personal service. 20 As for every matter of ay wisdom ▼
▼ Lit ofand understanding about which the king consulted them, he found them ba ten times bb better than all the ▼
▼ Or soothsayer priests, bd magicians and conjurers who were in all his realm. 21 And Daniel ▼
▼ Lit was untilcontinued until the bf first year of Cyrus the king.
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