“Then Nebuchadnezzar flew into a rage and ordered that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego be brought before him. When they were brought in, Nebuchadnezzar said to them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, that you refuse to serve my gods or to worship the gold statue I have set up? I will give you one more chance to bow down and worship the statue I have made when you hear the sound of the musical instruments. But if you refuse, you will be thrown immediately into the blazing furnace. And then what god will be able to rescue you from my power?”
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego replied, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty. But even if he doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up.”-Daniel 3:13-18
God has called us to worship Him for who He is, and not simply for what He can do for us. There is probably no other story in Scripture that captures this better than Daniel 3:13-18.
Shadrach, Meschach, and Abednego are faced with a dilemma. Worship the statue of gold set up by King Nebuchadnezzar or face being thrown into a fiery furnace. The faith of these men is about to be tested. How will they respond to Nebuchadnezzar’s edict? More importantly, how will they be affected by God’s response?
These men’s faith was not dictated by what God could or could not do; nor was it rooted in what they believed He would do. They simply worshipped God for who He was and trusted Him with the outcome. Their declaration of faith still echoes in our hearts today: “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty. But even if he doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up.”
Many of you are familiar with the popular hymn, It Is Well, by Horatio Spafford. Spafford’s daughters died when their boat sank on the way to Europe. Spafford had stayed back to finish up some business before boarding the next ship out. His wife, who survived the shipwreck, messaged him: “Saved alone. What shall I do?” Spafford took the next ship out and when passing over the spot where his daughter’s perished penned these words:
"When peace like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to know,
It is well, It is well with my soul.”
Events like this can cripple a person’s faith in God and cause them to become angry; or they can drive a person deeper into the arms of God. As believers we will continue to pray and believe that He will show up in our circumstances, but even if He doesn’t we will keep our trust in HIm.
Pastor Scott Burr
Dayspring Community Church