Daniel 3:19-30

18 01 2011

 Daniel 3:19) Then Nebuchadnezzar was full of fury, and the expression on his face changed toward Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. He spoke and commanded that they heat the furnace seven times more than it was usually heated.

Daniel 3:20) And he commanded certain mighty men of valor who were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, and cast them into the burning fiery furnace.

Daniel 3:21) Then these men were bound in their coats, their trousers, their turbans, and their other garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.

Daniel 3:22) Therefore, because the king’s command was urgent, and the furnace exceedingly hot, the flame of the fire killed those men who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego.

Daniel 3:23) And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.

Daniel 3:24) Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished; and he rose in haste and spoke, saying to his counselors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the midst of the fire?” They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.”

Daniel 3:25) “Look!” he answered, “I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.”

Daniel 3:26) Then Nebuchadnezzar went near the mouth of the burning fiery furnace and spoke, saying, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here.” Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego came from the midst of the fire.

Daniel 3:27) And the satraps, administrators, governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together, and they saw these men on whose bodies the fire had no power; the hair of their head was not singed nor were their garments affected, and the smell of fire was not on them.

Daniel 3:28) Nebuchadnezzar spoke, saying, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, who sent His Angel and delivered His servants who trusted in Him, and they have frustrated the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they should not serve nor worship any god except their own God!

Daniel 3:29) “Therefore I make a decree that any people, nation, or language which speaks anything amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made an ash heap; because there is no other God who can deliver like this.”

Daniel 3:30) Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego in the province of Babylon.

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 A lot of pressure huh… either deny God and save your life, but lose your soul or proclaim God lose your life, and gain eternal life… it’s a puzzle that many people outside of the U.S. face everyday… and sometimes in the U.S. as well.  It may not be as often as it is outside… but all it takes is one crazy religious zealot who believes that we aren’t living the way his beliefs tell us to and we could be looking at the very same choice.  The question isn’t what will happen… it’s are you ready.  Thousands of people lose their lives everyday through poverty, famine, and sickness… when our time comes we won’t always be ready for it to end, but will we be ready for what comes after it ends… will we be ready for the judgment of God, for our sins to be laid bare.  I’ve done many things I’m not proud of, things that I’m ashamed of.  But they WILL be read back to me… the good part is that Jesus wiped my slate clean with his blood.  But now I have another choice… the choice isn’t what can I do about my past, it’s how I choose to live for the future… God’s way or the way of the world.  What will you choose?

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