But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank. Daniel 1:8.
Inspiration has recorded the history of Daniel and his companions as a shining example for the youth of all succeeding ages…. Those who would preserve their powers unimpaired for the service of God must observe strict temperance in the use of all His bounties, as well as total abstinence from every injurious or debasing indulgence.
The youth are surrounded by allurements addressed to the appetite…. Those who, like Daniel, refuse to defile themselves, will reap the reward of their temperate habits. With their greater physical stamina and increased power of endurance, they have a bank of deposit upon which to draw in case of emergency.
Right physical habits promote mental superiority. Intellectual power, physical strength, and longevity, depend upon immutable laws. There is no happen-so, no chance, about this matter. The higher powers will not interfere to preserve men from the consequences of the violation of nature’s laws.38The Signs of the Times, March 2, 1882.
The question with every youth … should be, Shall I consult my inclination, and indulge my appetite, or shall I follow the dictates of conscience, and keep my head clear and preserve my physical powers by abstaining from every practice that would bring weakness upon them? Shall I fall a prey to the customs of the world, … or shall I separate myself from every custom that is debasing in its results? Shall I not honor God, rather than please the world? …
Daniel and his fellows realized that principle was at stake, and that they could afford to make no compromise with the tempter. The light and truth reflected from the throne of God were dearer to them than any honor that men could bestow. It is the privilege of the young people of today to be as firm and true, as modest and successful, as were the Jewish youths in the kingdom of Babylon…. God honored Daniel, and He will honor every youth who takes the course that Daniel took in honoring God.39The Youth’s Instructor, October 25, 1894.