1 In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came to Jerusalem, and besieged it.
2 And LORD gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, with part of the vessels of the house of God. And he carried them into the land of Shinar to the house of his god, and he brought the vessels into the treasure-house of his god.
3 And the king spoke to Ashpenaz the master of his eunuchs, that he should bring in [certain] of the sons of Israel, even of the seed royal and of the ranking men,
4 youths in whom was no blemish, but well-favored, and skilful in all wisdom, and endued with knowledge, and understanding science, and such as had ability to stand in the king's palace. And that he should teach them the learning and
5 And the king appointed for them a daily portion of the king's food, and of the wine which he drank. And that they should be nourished three years, that at the end of it they should stand before the king.
6 Now among these were, of the sons of Judah: Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah.
7 And the ruler of the eunuchs gave names to them. To Daniel he gave [the name of] Belteshazzar, and to Hananiah, [of] Shadrach, and to Mishael, [of] Meshach, and to Azariah, [of] Abednego.
8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the king's food, nor with the wine which he drank. Therefore he requested of the ruler of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.
9 Now God made Daniel find kindness and compassion in the sight of the ruler of the eunuchs.
10 And the ruler of the eunuchs said to Daniel, I fear my lord the king, who has appointed your food and your drink. For why should he see your faces worse looking than the youths that are of your own age? So ye would endanger my head
11 Then Daniel said to the steward whom the ruler of the eunuchs had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah,
12 Test thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days, and let them give us vegetables to eat, and water to drink.
13 Then let our countenances be looked upon before thee, and the countenance of the youths that eat of the king's food. And as thou see, deal with thy servants.
14 So he hearkened to them in this matter, and tested them ten days.
15 And at the end of ten days their countenances appeared finer, and they were fuller in flesh, than all the youths who ate of the king's dainties.
16 So the steward took away their food, and the wine that they should drink, and gave them vegetables.
17 Now as for these four youths, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom. And Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.
18 And at the end of the days which the king had appointed for bringing them in, the ruler of the eunuchs brought them in before Nebuchadnezzar.
19 And the king conversed with them. And among them all none was found like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah. Therefore they stood before the king.
20 And in every matter of wisdom and understanding, concerning which the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters who were in all his realm.
21 And Daniel continued even to the first year of king Cyrus.