Daniel 1:12
Parallel Verses
New International Version
"Please test your servants for ten days: Give us nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink.

New Living Translation
"Please test us for ten days on a diet of vegetables and water," Daniel said.

English Standard Version
“Test your servants for ten days; let us be given vegetables to eat and water to drink.

New American Standard Bible
"Please test your servants for ten days, and let us be given some vegetables to eat and water to drink.

King James Bible
Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Please test your servants for 10 days. Let us be given vegetables to eat and water to drink.

International Standard Version
"Please test your servants for ten days and let us be given vegetables to eat and water to drink.

NET Bible
"Please test your servants for ten days by providing us with some vegetables to eat and water to drink.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"Please test us for ten days. Give us only vegetables to eat and water to drink.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Prove, now, with thy slaves ten days, and let them give us vegetables to eat and water to drink.

King James 2000 Bible
Test your servants, I beseech you, ten days; and let them give us vegetables to eat, and water to drink.

American King James Version
Prove your servants, I beseech you, ten days; and let them give us vegetables to eat, and water to drink.

American Standard Version
Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Try, I beseech thee, thy servants for ten days, and let pulse be given us to eat, and water to drink:

Darby Bible Translation
Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink;

English Revised Version
Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink.

Webster's Bible Translation
Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink.

World English Bible
Test your servants, I beg you, ten days; and let them give us vegetables to eat, and water to drink.

Young's Literal Translation
'Try, I pray thee, thy servants, ten days; and they give to us of the vegetables, and we eat, and water, and we drink;
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

1:8-16 The interest we think we make for ourselves, we must acknowledge to be God's gift. Daniel was still firm to his religion. Whatever they called him, he still held fast the spirit of an Israelite. These youths scrupled concerning the meat, lest it should be sinful. When God's people are in Babylon they need take special care that they partake not of her sins. It is much to the praise of young people, not to covet or seek the delights of sense. Those who would excel in wisdom and piety, must learn betimes to keep the body under. Daniel avoided defiling himself with sin; and we should more fear that than any outward trouble. It is easier to keep temptation at a distance, than to resist it when near. And we cannot better improve our interest in any with whom we have found favour, than to use it to keep us from sin. People will not believe the benefit of avoiding excess, and of a spare diet, nor how much they contribute to the health of the body, unless they try. Conscientious temperance will always do more, even for the comfort of this life, than sinful indulgence.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 12. - Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink. The Septuagint seems to have read yutan, "let there be given," instead of yitnu, "let them give." Zero'im, "seeds" (σπερμάτων, Theodotion), "pulse" (ὀσπρίων, Septuagint and Authorized and Revised Versions). This word occurs only here; it differs, however, only by the second vowel from zeruim in Isaiah 61:11, and there it is rendered as by Theodotion here, σπέρματα. As the vowels were not written for centuries after the latest critical date of Daniel, it is in the highest degree absurd to ground any argument on the pronunciation affixed to the word by these late scribes, probably with as great caprice as made them maintain to all time "suspended letters" here and there in the text, or sometimes begin a word with a final mere. Professor Bevan regards this word a s possibly a scribe's mistake for zeronim, a word with the same meaning, which occurs in ver. 16, and is found in the Talmud. He might more naturally regard zero'him as a scribe's mistake for zero'im. As, however, the word is Aramaic, occurring both in the Eastern and Western dialects, it may be a case where the original word shines through. Prove thy servants ten days. The word used for "prove' is that frequently used of God in relation to men, as in Genesis 22:1," God did prove Abraham." Calvin thinks that Daniel made this request because he had been directed by the Divine Spirit. We would not for one moment deny that all wisdom comes down from above, and that it is the Spirit of the Almighty that giveth understanding, yet the suggestion was a reasonable one, the period was long enough to have given signs that it affected them injuriously, and yet not so long but the evil effects might easily be removed. Ten days. It may be that this is merely a round number - an easily marked period - but an experiment would have a definite period. It is approximately the third of a revolution of the moon, and as the Babylonians were attentive observers of the movements of the heavenly bodies, especially of the moon, "ten days" is likely enough to be a period with them, as certainly a week was. Moreover, among all the nations of antiquity numbers were credited with special powers, as all who have studied Greek philosophy know. Pythagoras rested the whole universe on number. This theory, in which to some extent he was followed by Plato, seems to have been derived from Assyrian, if not Babylonian sources. Thus Lenormant, in 'La Magic,' gives a dialogue between Hea and his son Hilgq-mulu-qi. Everything depends on knowing "the number." It may be noted, as bearing on this, that in the bas-reliefs portraying a feast from the palace of Asshurbanipal, the guests are seated in messes of four round small tables. If, then, as is probable, all these young cadets at the Babylonian court sat in the royal presence, they would have a table to themselves, and thus the peculiarity of their meal would not be patent to the whole company. Had the number of friends been more, they would have been conspicuous: had they been fewer, they would have been observed by those added to make up the number. Their request to be allotted to eat only pulse and to drink only water, had not, as we have already said, anything necessarily of the asceticism of the Essenes. They, the Essenes, rather started from Daniel and his friends. Maimonides tells us that there were three kinds of zeronim - tbu'ah, "crops," wheat, barley, millet, etc.; gatonith, "small crops," peas, beans, lentils; geenah, "garden seeds," such as mint, anise, and cummin. The English versions and the Septuagint agree in regarding the second of these classes as here intended. There is this to be said, that seeds are the most nourishing form of vegetable diet. Aben Ezra suggests "rice" as the seeds used for this purpose; but as, just as in all hot climates, vegetables and fruits of all sorts were largely consumed in Babylon, definition is unnecessary. To the present day among the inhabitants of the district around ancient Babylon, indeed, over the Levant generally, dates and raisins, with grain, and in the season fresh fruit, form the staple food. Daniel really prayed to live as the common people.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days, Here Daniel manifestly includes his companions, and makes his request for himself and them; desiring that they might be tried ten days with different sort of food and drink, and see whether any alteration would be made in them for the worse; which was a proper time for such a trial; for in that time it might be reasonably supposed that their food, if it had any bad effect on them, would appear. Saadiah makes these ten days to be the days between the first day of the year and the day of atonement; but without any foundation:

and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink; instead of the king's meat, pulse, beans, pease, vetches, lentiles, rice, millet, and the like. The word (d) used signifies anything sown, all kinds of roots, herbs, and fruits; and, instead of wine, water; meat and drink, it may be thought, that persons of such birth and education had not been used to; and yet they preferred these to the king's dainties, by eating and drinking of which their consciences would be in danger of being defiled.

(d) , Sept.; "de seminibus", Montanus; "de sativis", Cocceius.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

12. pulse—The Hebrew expresses any vegetable grown from seeds, that is, vegetable food in general [Gesenius].

Daniel 1:12 Additional Commentaries
Context
Daniel's Faithfulness
11But 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 given some vegetables to eat and water to drink. 13"Then let our appearance be observed 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."…
Cross References
Revelation 2:10
Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor's crown.

Daniel 1:11
Daniel then said to the guard whom the chief official had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah,

Daniel 1:13
Then compare our appearance with that of the young men who eat the royal food, and treat your servants in accordance with what you see."

Daniel 1:16
So the guard took away their choice food and the wine they were to drink and gave them vegetables instead.
Treasury of Scripture

Prove your servants, I beseech you, ten days; and let them give us vegetables to eat, and water to drink.

pulse to eat. Heb. of pulse that we may eat, etc. Pulse, {zer?im,} denotes all leguminous plants, which are not reaped but pulled or plucked; which, however wholesome, was not naturally calculated to render them fatter in flesh than the others.

Daniel 1:16 Thus Melzar took away the portion of their meat, and the wine that …

Genesis 1:29,30 And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which …

Deuteronomy 8:3 And he humbled you, and suffered you to hunger, and fed you with …

Romans 14:2 For one believes that he may eat all things: another, who is weak, eats herbs.

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