December 29

Daniel 3:17-18, 25 17If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king. 18But even if he does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up."...

25He said, "Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods."

Nebuchadnezzar's dream went to his head. That was a pun. He was represented by the head of gold on a ninety-foot high statue. When his instrumentalists played, everyone had to bow and worship the image. Some people think this is a foreshadowing of the image of the Antichrist will one day set up.

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego refused to bow down, because they worshiped Jehovah alone. The king gave them a second chance. No doubt, he had heard of their faithful service and promotions Daniel had given them and knew the other officials were envious.

They told the king plainly, "Our God can save us, but if He does not, we still won't worship the image." Consider those words. God can work a miracle if He chooses. If He does not choose to, it shouldn't change our minds. What is right is right, regardless if God intervenes or if we suffer. Sometimes we insist that God work on our behalf. Do we have the conviction that if He chooses not to, that He knows what is best, even if we lose our business, loved one, or even our life? He is able! But we don't always know beforehand what He will do. Will we do what God determines is best no matter how costly to us?

The furnace was heated seven times hotter than normal. The guards who threw them in were killed from the heat. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were walking in the fire unharmed. The king saw a fourth man in the fire who appeared to be like a son of the gods. They came out without even the smell of smoke.

Meditation: Our God can deliver us, but if not, do what is right!