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Daniel 1:17

ESV As for these four youths, God gave them learning and skill in all literature and wisdom, and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.
NIV To these four young men God gave knowledge and understanding of all kinds of literature and learning. And Daniel could understand visions and dreams of all kinds.
NASB And as for these four youths, God gave them knowledge and intelligence in every kind of literature and expertise; Daniel even understood all kinds of visions and dreams.
CSB God gave these four young men knowledge and understanding in every kind of literature and wisdom. Daniel also understood visions and dreams of every kind.
NLT God gave these four young men an unusual aptitude for understanding every aspect of literature and wisdom. And God gave Daniel the special ability to interpret the meanings of visions and dreams.
KJV As for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.

What does Daniel 1:17 mean?

The four "youths" mentioned are among those captured when Nebuchadnezzar defeated Judah (Daniel 1:1–2). Children of royal families were selected for their appearance and intellect and placed in a reeducation program (Daniel 1:3–5). The four named in this chapter (Daniel 1:6–7) have already demonstrated willingness to maintain their faith despite intense pressure (Daniel 1:8–16). Based on the context of this chapter, it seems not all the captured Jewish youths were so committed.

While Nebuchadnezzar intended to make these boys into assets for his royal court, the Lord God was ultimately in control of their destiny. All four are credited with impressive skills in logic, insight, academia, and intellect—as given to them by God. Daniel was gifted further with the ability to interpret dreams and visions. Chaldean culture was renowned for those who claimed the ability to interpret dreams. Yet they will soon prove unable to provide King Nebuchadnezzar with assistance about a troubling dream (Daniel 2:1–11). As Daniel's future unfolded, he became known as a reliable interpreter of visions.

Daniel's ability is called out for special notice because it is an uncommon gift. In Old Testament times God often revealed His will through dreams and visions, but now He has revealed His will through His Son and His Word (Hebrews 1:1–2; 2 Timothy 3:16–17). Cults have sprung up as their founders claimed to receive special revelation through a dream or vision, but Christianity rests on the firm foundation of Scripture (1 Corinthians 4:6).
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