Summary: Shadrach, Meshech and Abed-Nego experienced the trial only God can deliver one through.
Faith into the Furnace
The King’s Demeanor 3:1-7
Nebuchadnezzar was not happy just being the head of gold. He wanted to have a permanent kingdom. So, he ordered a statue built that stood 90 feet tall and 9 nine feet wide. Covered with gold, it shone brilliantly in the plains of Dura. The word Dura means “a walled-in place.” It was a reflection of his glory and pride.
It was here that he called for all of his officials to appear and pay homage to his creation. His herald (apostate preacher) cried out the King’s instructions regarding the new faith he was establishing. Note in verse 6 the consequences of those who would not follow the instructions. It would be met with a horrible death.
The King’s Demand 3:8-18
At the refusal of Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-Nego’s willingness to bow, the Chaldeans approached Nebuchadnezzar about their disobedience. They appealed to his pride, policies and procedures in verse 12. Nebuchadnezzar then offered them an opportunity to compromise by bowing the next time the orchestra played. They were encouraged to do so by “voluntary compliance.” But notice their response. In verses 16-18, they replied by saying that, “Our God is able to deliver us.”
The King’s Disbelief 3:19-25
Here were three young men who refused to be bought at any price. They would not compromise their convictions. They would not fret, fear or flinch. The fire is going to get hotter and more intense. Nebuchadnezzar was furious! He had the furnace fired up seven times hotter. The world will do it’s best to destroy your faith in the Living God.
Nebuchadnezzar couldn’t believe it! The three Hebrew men were in the furnace walking with a fourth man. Isn’t it good to know that God is with you during your trials?
The King’s Dismay 3:26-30
The King was awestruck! Only God can deliver His people through the fire. Notice that Nebuchadnezzar recognized God’s power in the life of these men but did not recognize Him as his God.
The world wants to destroy your faith while God wants to develop your faith. He wants you to be encouraged through your trials. Your experiences in the faith help others to trust in One they cannot see.