The Courage to Stand By Your Convictions
Dr. Charles Stanley
Watch The Courage to Stand By Your Convictions video.
Scripture: Daniel 6:10-26
I. Introduction: A conviction is a belief that is considered true and worthy of standing upon regardless of the consequences. However, because there are no real standards these days, our society has become worthy of God’s judgment.
II. Daniel is a perfect example of a man who lived according to his strong Scriptural convictions. He was willing to stand for them even when doing so could have cost him his life. Daniel was a foreigner to Babylon, but he influenced all of their kings and became a person of great authority.
III. To successfully resist the temptations to compromise our standards, we need to follow Daniel’s godly example to see how he:
A. He stood up for his convictions when he was a teenager. Early in life, Daniel made up his mind to live as a Hebrew and keep the Law of Moses.
B. He was convinced that he should be a godly example to others. Daniel’s determination to live in obedience to the Lord set an example for the other Jewish youths who were living in that heathen society.
C. He knew God would hear and answer his prayers. That’s why Daniel had the boldness to hold firm to his convictions and risk requesting a different diet.
D. He was committed to being true to the Word of God. When Nebuchadnezzar had an alarming dream, the Lord gave Daniel the interpretation. Daniel decided to tell the king the truth.
E. He had a conviction that he was not going to bow down to any other god. When Nebuchadnezzar made an image of himself and commanded all the people to bow down to it, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego refused, even though they faced being thrown into a burning furnace.
F. He was fully persuaded that God would protect him no matter what. Daniel could not be bought off because he had nothing to fear as long as his convictions were founded on God’s Word.
IV. Daniel was compelled to stand firm because:
A. He was taught by his parents. Having grown up in Jerusalem, Daniel learned to obey the Mosaic Law.
B. He studied the Word of God. Since he knew the Scriptures, he could confidently stand on the truth when challenged or questioned.
C. He loved the Lord. Daniel’s devotion to God and His Word empowered his commitment.
D. He was committed to obey God. He didn’t just know the Word and love the Lord; he proved it with his obedience.
V. As we look back at Daniel’s life, we can see the results of his faithfulness in the way:
A. He remained obedient to the Lord. Daniel won his first battle when he refused to defile himself with the king’s food. But that was just the beginning of his lifelong obedience to God.
B. He influenced his companions to do the same. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego followed Daniel’s example of obedience and also refused to eat the king’s food.
C. His obedience opened doors of opportunity for Daniel to counsel and influence kings. Because he was a person of character who stood up for his convictions, they heard about the one true God.
D. God gave him favor with the kings. Although Daniel was a foreigner who held firmly to his Hebrew beliefs, he was promoted to the highest places of authority by every king he served. Instead of persecuting him for speaking the truth, they raised him up.
E. God endowed him with one of the most important prophecies in His Word. Because Daniel had remained a trustworthy and obedient servant in the midst of the Babylonian culture, the Lord entrusted him with amazing prophecies about future events.
VI. God is looking for people like Daniel—followers of Christ who will stand by their godly convictions, even in the face of threat or temptation to compromise for profit. Ask yourself these questions:
A. What convictions guide your conduct? Writing them down is a good way to solidify them in your mind.
B. What convictions are you unwilling to compromise? Which ones are not up for negotiation, no matter what happens as a result?
C. Do you have the courage to stand firm even when facing threatening consequences? If holding onto your convictions resulted in losing your job or not passing a course, would you compromise?
VII. Conlusion:Godly character is a quality that is worth far more than anything you could gain or lose by compromising your biblically based convictions. If you want to become a person of God, you can’t afford to give in to fear of criticism, rejection, failure, or loss. One strong, uncompromising, obedient child of God is a powerhouse of influence, who—like Daniel—can impact a nation.