2008-09-15 - Meshach, Shadrach, and Abednego: Facing the Heat
Because of their faith, these men survived a raging fire. (Daniel 3:1-30, Hebrews 11:34)
Then Nebuchadnezzar said,"Praise be to the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, who has sent his angel and rescued his servants! They trusted in him and defied the king's command, and were willing to give up their lives rather than serve or worship any god except their own God." (Daniel 3:28 NIV)
King Nebuchadnezzar was beside himself and wanted to teach Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego a lesson. These three men refused to obey the king's command. All he asked was that everyone worship his god and bow down to the golden statute. Those who did not would be thrown into a hot furnace. All the people at the statue dedication bowed to it except Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, for they weren't going to go against the living God. What made these three so special?
We can become apprehensive when we are called to do something that seems impossible or out of the ordinary. When we look at Shadrach's, Meshach's and Abednego's courage, it encourages us. These men did not let fear keep them captive. Instead, they took a step of faith.
Deep down, the king didn't want these lads to go into the burning furnace, but they gave the ruler no choice. Nebuchadnezzar even offered the three a way out and they did not take it. The men told him they weren't worried about what would happen to them - for God would protect them.
As Nebuchadnezzar watched, he saw four guys and not three. Immediately they were released. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego had no signs of burns or scratches. Even their clothes didn't smell like smoke! How is that possible, unless God really did come through for them? No golden statue could do that. After witnessing this miracle, King Nebuchadnezzar issued a law punishing anyone who talked badly about God.
Lord, No matter what happens, I know You will not let me down. When things seem impossible, I look to You, God. Please come to my rescue when the heat is turned on me. In Jesus' name I pray, Amen.