Remaining faithful during trial – Part 2
Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, the three faithful worshippers of the living God refused to worship the image of the king of Babylon. Unafraid of the king’s fury and not intimidated by the terrors of the burning fiery furnace, they refused to give up the worship of God for the worship of the golden image. The king was fierce in his persecution and they were firm in their purpose and principle. He had insulted their God, and they must defend God’s glory with their very lives.
They were unwilling to render unto Caesar the things that are God’s. They were ready to part with their lives, rather than part with their conscience or convictions. They were captives in Babylon, but their souls were not in captivity to the god of this world. God has forbidden His people to bow down to any idol and no reasoning can make that right, which God has said is wrong. As God’s command is plain and direct, so our obedience must be plain and direct. This example of heroism teaches us that we must always say NO, when we are tempted and threatened to do wrong.
The believer, who has pledged and consecrated his heart and life to Christ, is resolved and determined to serve God at all times, whoever is pleased or displeased. The truth has arrested him, and he knows that the love of God and the love of the world will no more mix than oil and water. He stands for truth and righteousness; he refuses even to parley with iniquity. With such brave resolve, we shall be able to endure the trial of the hour.
These uncompromising believers refused to bow to the king’s unrighteous demand because they were sustained by unwavering faith in God’s promises. “When thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee” (Isaiah 43:2). When we believe that God will make all things work together for our good, we will live in constant obedience to Him and leave the outcome of all events in His hands. No sevenfold heated furnace of persecution is hot enough to burn up the conviction of a true child of God. All the fury and power of the most tyrannical persecutor cannot burn up the deep-rooted truth of God’s Word from our hearts, if we trust in His grace and power to keep us.
Whatever God calls you to do or to suffer for, fear not to obey. He will be with you in whatever He calls you to do. If He calls you to enter the fiery furnace, hesitate not for one moment. He will be with you and either sustain you, or deliver you, or make it conducive to your higher good and future glory. With courage and determination, we must act in the light of eternity. We must not judge any situation by the king’s threats or by the heat of the burning fiery furnace, but by the everlasting God and the eternal life awaiting us.
These three conquerors stood their ground against sin and dared the rage of an infuriated persecutor, because they saw Him who is invisible and had respect unto the recompense of the reward. We must constantly live in the reality of the future, or we will miss the chief fountain of holy strength. “Our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us.” The overwhelming power of their faith dominated their hearts. In times of emergency, their faith sprang to the fore and asserted itself. Faith made them fearless, courageous and persevering. They knew that God’s Will, not the king’s will, will prevail, and that God will be glorified.
Through faith they “quenched the violence of fire” (Hebrews 11:33,34). How about you?
Further Reading (King James Version): Daniel 3:13-18; Daniel 3:16-18; Philippians 4:6-9; 1 Peter 5:7-9; Isaiah 51:12-16; Acts 4:17-20; 5:27-30; Hebrews 12:1-4; 1 Peter 4:12-19;2 Thessalonians 1:3-10; 2 Corinthians 4:13-18; Daniel 3:17; Romans 4:20,21; 8:18,25-28; Isaiah 43:2,7; 2 Timothy 1:11-14; Hebrews 2:13-18; 7:25,26; 2 Timothy 4:18; Romans 8:31-39; Jude 24,25.
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