Now if ye be ready that at what time ye hear the sound of the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, and dulcimer, and all kinds of musick, ye fall down and worship the image which I have made; well: but if ye worship not, ye shall be cast the same hour into the midst of a burning fiery furnace; and who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands? ~Daniel 3:15
The Pew Religious Landscape survey reported that, as of 2014, 22.8% of the U.S. population is religiously unaffiliated, atheists made up 3.1%, and agnostics made up 4% of the U.S. population (“America's Changing Religious Landscape.” Pew Research Center's Religion & Public Life Project, www.pewforum.org/2015/05/12/americas-changing-religious-landscape/). This means over one quarter of the U.S. population has no belief in God or question a belief in God. Nebuchadnezzar was a pagan king who sarcastically asked, “Who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands?”
We see the challenge.
Nebuchadnezzar built a 90 foot tall and 9 foot wide golden image of himself. It was placed in the valley of Dutra, where it could be seen from miles away. He mandated that all of his officers had to bow to it when they heard the sound of music. The king threatened that anyone who did not bow would be cast in a burning, fiery furnace. It was a large, burning furnace that people inside the city were familiar with. Three Hebrew men who believed in the true and living God did not bow. In spite of the challenge of being burned in a massive, fiery furnace, they did not bow. Our faith is being challenged all the time. The devil is playing deceitful music to entice believers away from God. He mocks God and seeks to belittle our faith in trying to make God look like He is non-existent. Stand up to the devil’s challenge!
We see the choice.
The three Hebrew young men were called into the king’s presence and told to bow. They answered that they knew that their God was well able to deliver them from the fiery furnace, but if He did not, they still would not bow. You have a choice to let people know that you believe in a God Who is all-powerful and can deliver you from harm, but if He does not, you will still not bow. We have a choice to make. This choice is to believe that either God is real and Who He says He is, or God is not real and unable to deliver you. Do you choose to believe, even if it will cost you?
We see the charge.
The king was enraged and commanded that the furnace be made seven times hotter and that the three Hebrew young men be cast in alive with their clothes and shoes on. To his amazement, he looked in the furnace and saw them walking in the fire with a fourth Man. This fourth Man looked like the Son of God! In addition, there was no hurt, no burn, and not even the smell of fire on them. God gave charge, or safekeeping, of these three men. God made them fireproof! This is a powerful testimonial of God showing Himself strong for His servants.
We see the change.
The king could not believe what he saw. He summoned them out of the fire, examined them closely, and saw that there was no hurt on them. He gave glory to God for His protection and proclaimed, “There is no other God that can deliver after this sort.” He went from, “Who is that God?” to, “There is no other God.” He was changed in his persuasion. Our God is all-powerful, all-knowing, eternal, infinite, holy, righteous, and the only wise God. He is the God of all grace, the God of hope, the God of comfort, the God of our salvation, the God Who cannot fail, the God Who does exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, and the God Who is and is a Rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. Who is that God? He is my Savior, my God, my Lord, and the Shepherd of my soul.
Have a confident God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: 1Kings 21-22