Archive for January 13th, 2014

Daniel 3

Daniel 3 contains one of the most notable stories from scripture – the story of the fiery furnace.  King Nebuchadnezzar built a giant image of gold and set it up for the entire kingdom to worship.  When music was played, everyone was required to fall on their face and worship the golden image.  But there were three – the friends of Daniel who had been given authority in the kingdom – who refused and they were called out to the king.  He was enraged that they wouldn’t worship his golden image and orders them brought before him, where he threatens to throw them into the fiery furnace if they refuse.

The threesome of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego refuse.  “Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. If this be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up”.  Not only to they refuse, they do it with confidence.  They aren’t afraid of the king’s fire, and they make it clear that God alone will receive their worship and praise.

So the king orders the fire heated seven times hotter than normal, and has the trio thrown in.  The guards who take them to the furnace are killed as they throw them in.  The three were bound and pushed in, and then the watching begins.  The king is there and says “Did we not cast three men bound into the fire….I see four men unbound, walking in the midst of the fire, and they are not hurt; and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods”.  God did exactly what the three said He would.  He protected them and “then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the door of the burning fiery furnace; he declared, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here”.  The king can’t believe what happened.

It was a miracle of massive size.  God “sent his angel and delivered his servants, who trusted in him, and set aside the king’s command, and yielded up their bodies rather than serve and worship any god except their own God”.  The king gets it and changes the decree from worshipping the golden image, to worshipping the true God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego.  God is glorified and His power is made known because of the faithfulness of His three servants.  They were in a place of power before the incident, but are promoted to even more authority after.  How is your faith in God?  Is obedience more important than anything?  Do you truly trust Him?

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