Summary: This sermon examines the biblical description of faith. What is faith? One way to get a better picture of biblical faith is to gain a clear understanding of what biblical faith is not.
Author Tim Hansel tells the story about the day he and his son Zac were out in the country, climbing around in some cliffs. He heard a voice from above him yell, “Hey Dad! Catch me!”
He turned around to see Zac joyfully jumping off a rock straight at him. Zac had first jumped and then yelled “Hey Dad!”
Tim became an instant circus act, catching Zac. They both fell to the ground. For a moment after Tim caught Zac he could hardly talk.
When he found his voice again he gasped in exasperation: “Zac! Can you give me one good reason why you did that???”
Zac responded with remarkable calmness: “Sure! Because you’re my Dad.”
Zac’s whole assurance was based on the fact that his father was trustworthy. He could live life to the hilt because his father could be trusted.
In our text for today we will notice how Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego trusted their heavenly Father. Regardless of the outcome, they were willing to be thrown into a fiery pit and trust God with the outcome.
Let’s read about this account in Daniel 3:1-30:
1 King Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold, ninety
feet high and nine feet wide, and set it up on the plain of Dura in the province of Babylon. 2 He then summoned the satraps, prefects, governors, advisers, treasurers, judges, magistrates and all the other provincial officials to come to the dedication of the image he had set up. 3 So the satraps, prefects, governors, advisers, treasurers, judges, magistrates and all the other provincial officials assembled for the dedication of the image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up, and they stood before it.
4 Then the herald loudly proclaimed, “This is what you are commanded to do, O peoples, nations and men of every language: 5 As soon as you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipes and all kinds of music, you must fall down and worship the image of gold that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up. 6 Whoever does not fall down and worship will immediately be thrown into a blazing furnace.”
7 Therefore, as soon as they heard the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp and all kinds of music, all the peoples, nations and men of every language fell down and worshiped the image of gold that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up.
8 At this time some astrologers came forward and denounced the Jews. 9 They said to King Nebuchadnezzar, “O king, live forever! 10 You have issued a decree, O king, that everyone who hears the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipes and all kinds of music must fall down and worship the image of gold, 11 and that whoever does not fall down and worship will be thrown into a blazing furnace. 12 But there are some Jews whom you have set over the affairs of the province of Babylon—Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego—who pay no attention to you, O king. They neither serve your gods nor worship the image of gold you have set up.”
13 Furious with rage, Nebuchadnezzar summoned Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. So these men were brought before the king, 14 and Nebuchadnezzar said to them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the image of gold I have set up? 15 Now when you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipes and all kinds of music, if you are ready to fall down and worship the image I made, very good. But if you do not worship it, you will be thrown immediately into a blazing furnace. Then what god will be able to rescue you from my hand?”