First an Apology

I find myself apologizing several times for either the delay of the daily blog or it not appearing at all. This is not something I wish to continue as it may produce the wrong thought or intent of my commitment to the blog series. On the contrary, I seek to ensure the blog is done as often as possible. Yet, with the constraints of time and circumstance, that is not always the case. Many hours of diligent study are done daily in researching the subject for each blog which leaves little else to complete. As a result, sometimes other important issues, tasks, or study suffer. Playing catch-up is not the ideal nor the correct solution. Hence, I must do the proper prioritizing of what needs and must get done on a daily basis. So, rather than continuing to post further apologies, please know that if a blog does not appear on a given day then there is a genuine reason for it not appearing. I thank you in advance for your understanding on this matter.

In our last discussion on chapter three of the book of Daniel we saw King Nebuchadnezzar demanding that Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah bow down to the golden image or face being thrown into the furnace. Today we see their reply. It is contained in Daniel 3:16-18 which reads, “Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego replied to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to give you an answer concerning this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.” (NASB)

In the second sentence the three young men could easily be accused of being disrespectful and arrogant. Notice the sentence says that they did not need to give the king an answer. Only until they explain what they mean does this sentence clear any thought of disrespect or arrogance. Simply put, the three young men were saying that, because of their confidence in God, there was no answer to give. Their refusal to bow down to the image or worship the gods of Nebuchadnezzar was never an act of dishonor. Nor were they disobeying Nebuchadnezzar by their nonconformity to Nebuchadnezzar’s demands. They simply could not do the things Nebuchadnezzar was insisting they do because of what they said next. “If it be so, our God whom we serve”. Irrespective of the result of them refusing to bow to the image they were confident that if God chose to, He would deliver them from being burned to death. But even if He did not, they steadfastly maintained their faith and allegiance to the one true God. The fact that they said, “But even if He does not” should not in any way be misunderstood that they were saying that God lacked the ability to save them. They had complete confidence in God that whatever was His will they would not sin against Him by doing what the king insisted upon. Their minds were made up. They would not compromise their faith in God. Despite these young Hebrew men not having Matthew 10:28 or Luke 12:4-5 in their mental arsenal they knew many Scriptures of the Old Testament that would give them the confidence which, despite being put to death for their faithful service to God, that was the only thing a mere man, although a king, could do to them. They were acutely aware of the command in Exodus 20:3-5 that, “You shall have no other gods before Me. “You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me.” (NASB) They also had complete confidence in such Scriptures as Psalm 118:5-9; Psalm 56:4; Psalm 56:10-11; Isaiah 51:7; Isaiah 8:11-13; Deuteronomy 31:6; Psalm 27:1; Isaiah 51:12; Proverbs 29:25; Joshua 1:9; Isaiah 43:1; Psalm 23:4 which I encourage you to read while studying this blog.

 

Do you have the same confidence in God as Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah? You and I serve the same God they did.

Could you be as bold and courageous as these young men facing a fiery furnace? Many of the saints of the Reformation did.

What if it wasn’t you being threatened being thrown in a furnace or simply being executed in some way? What if it was your Spouse, your Child, your Grandchild or Sibling that was going to be put to death if you did not renounce your faith in God?

These are stark and serious questions you must prepare yourself for NOW if you are to show the confidence in God that, not only these three young Hebrew’s showed, but countless others have shown throughout the history of man.

If such fear and terror comes our way we must be ready and fully resigned to the will of God. The three young men did not ask for a miracle. They did not expect a miracle. Did they pray? I’m sure they did and we must also.