Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.
There are times when God’s people are called upon to endure great tests of faith. When all seems to fall apart and nobody is around to lend a helping hand. When God is their only hope.
When faced with such a trial, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego stood firm. Their great faith when tested with the fiery furnace has been a blessing to countless believers through the years.
Why? Because they remained faithful to the LORD, though tested to the limit. Something all believers strive for when troubled.
Let’s consider the characteristics found in these three men.
Courage Because of God
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were willing to go with God all the way to the end, which at the time seemed likely. This courage is rare. This courage amazes and inspires. This courage is what all believers hope to have when tested.
Where did this courage come from? Can this bravery be had today?
To begin with, this courage was not established on pride or physical strength. It was not worked up from within or inspired from without, by something in the world. They were not superhuman. They were men with like passions as us.
Their courage was found in the LORD.
It was a result of their faith in God. The men would not bow down to the king’s golden idol because it was forbidden in God’s Law. Since they believed God and lived by His Word, compromise was not an option. There was nothing for them to think over. There was no need for a discussion.
The matter was settled. Instead of bowing before the golden idol, they would stand for God, no matter the cost. It was God’s way and no other way would suffice.
Faith in the LORD produces this type of bravery. When you truly believe that God can do all things, you will have the courage to obey His word. Your faith will remove all fears.
Caution in Regard to God
It’s refreshing to read about the respect and reverence these men had for the LORD. Even when tested.
Take note, they refrained from presumption. There was no need to tell God what to do. No stipulations were made of the LORD or commands given to Him. It is the practice of some to make demands of God. As if the LORD were their personal secretary. This is blasphemy. How dare any created being make demands of their Creator? The LORD will do as He pleases, when He pleases.
Something else to consider, they refused to assume to know the will of God. Did God have a miracle planned? Was He going to remove them from the fire? Would they perish in the flames? Only the LORD knew what was about to occur. They would have to wait upon the LORD.
Because of pride, it is easy to assume that God must share all of His plans and purposes with us. That is nonsense. These Hebrew men did what all believers must do when faced with the unknown. They trusted the LORD to do what was best.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego did not ask for a miracle and they did not expect one.
No warning was issued to the king. There were no threats made upon the kingdom. The young men simply remained faithful to God and waited for Him to work on their behalf.
God has given you His revealed will, in His Word. Read the Bible and live by it. As you go through life, abide with Christ and trust in Him to direct your steps. You will find that the LORD is able to carry out His will in your life as you walk with Him.
Contentment with God
Peace with God. These men were content with whatever the LORD determined was best for them. That’s so easy to say, but at times it’s hard to live by.
Without a doubt they believed that God had power to deliver them from the fire, if He chose to. But if not, they were fine with that.
Faith in God produced submissive hearts. It was not about seeking personal desires. Of course they wanted to be delivered. Nobody wants to face the fire. But Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were prepared to deal with anything God permitted to take place.
Why, you ask? Because they believed the LORD would do what was best. They were content with that.
A content heart is the result of strong faith in God. It is when you believe that God knows what’s best for your life. So when faced with a trial you remain faithful to the LORD knowing He is able to work all things out for His glory.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego did not have some secret formula for success that is now lost and waiting to be discovered. It was simple. Because their God was great, they remained faithful to Him.
Nothing could shake these faithful men.
This response must have stunned those gathered around King Nebuchadnezzar. The three young Hebrew men answered the conquering king without delay and with boldness.
There was no need for the music to play again. The issue had been settled in their heart. These faithful men would not bow down.
It may not be easy but it is possible to remain faithful to God in a sinful world.