I will not bow down
The Bible tells us in Daniel 3:1-29 that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were men of tremendous Faith who walked with God in the midst of a corrupt and godless society. King Nebuchadnezzar had built a statue of himself, made from pure gold. The King ordered everyone in his Kingdom to bow down before it and worship it, or they would be put to death. Everybody in the Kingdom fell before the statue, except for 3 teenagers - Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.
The King was furious! The three teenagers were given a final chance to bow down to the statue, but they refused once again, saying in Daniel 3:17 "If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty.” The King did not back down; Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were not only tied up and thrown into the furnace, in fact, the King turned up the heat and ordered the furnace to be heated seven times hotter than usual.
How amazing is that? Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego had such strong Faith that nothing could make them bow to Nebuchadnezzar's statue - no threats, no punishment, no consequence. They were fully persuaded of the promises of God and were obedient to Him.
The most incredible part of the story is that the furnace was so hot that it killed some of Nebuchadnezzar’s strongest soldiers, but as the King watches on, he identifies not 3, but 4 people in the furnace. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego are met by Jesus in the fire, who breaks their chains and walks freely with them in the midst of the flames. The three men are brought out of the furnace alive, and as chapters 24-27 of Daniel tell us, they did not even smell of smoke.
Things may be heating up in your life – illness, unemployment, relationship problems, losing a loved one. Like Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, you took a stand for God and placed all your trust in Him, but despite your best efforts waiting on God for a breakthrough, things just seem to be getting worse. You find yourself staring down a fire; a deadly fire like none you've seen before. You prayed God would save you from the fire, but it remains, and you feel it beginning to surround and consume you. Take heart in the lives of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, because when the devil turns up the heat, God is there.
As humans, we hope for a breakthrough in our situation and that God will save us before things get too hot, but sometimes, as we learn in Daniel 3, the miracle is in the fire.
We are challenged in our walk with God by Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego and their incredibly faith – God can rescue me from my situation; and even if He doesn't, I will not bow down.
Prayer for today: God thank-you that I don’t even have to pray for you to be with me right now because I know that you are. I trust that you will be faithful, even if I walk through fire.