BIG IDEA: God Saves
Bible Story: Daniel 3
Bible Verse: Daniel 3:23-27- 23 So Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, securely tied, fell into the roaring flames. 24 But suddenly, Nebuchadnezzar jumped up in amazement and exclaimed to his advisers, “Didn’t we tie up three men and throw them into the furnace?” “Yes, Your Majesty, we certainly did,” they replied. 25 “Look!” Nebuchadnezzar shouted. “I see four men, unbound, walking around in the fire unharmed! And the fourth looks like a god!”... 26 So Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego stepped out of the fire… 27 Not a hair on their heads was singed, and their clothing was not scorched. They didn’t even smell of smoke!
The account of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego takes place in Daniel 3. At this point in the Bible, the Israelites were living as exiles in the nation of Babylon under king Nebuchadnezzar. King Nebuchadnezzar was an evil and arrogant king. He built a 90 foot statue of himself and required everyone to bow down to it. This included the Israelites who believed they should not worship anyone or anything besides God.
Nebuchadnezzar threatened to kill anyone who didn’t bow down and worship him by throwing them into a fiery furnace. When everyone else bowed down to the statue, including many Israelites who knew better, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego refused to bow. This enraged Nebuchadnezzar and he questioned them.
They explained to Nebuchadnezzar that they would not bow to him because they believed in God. They knew this would not please the king but they stated that God would save them from his wrath. Their answer didn’t suit the king so he had them thrown into the fire. Shortly after these three men were thrown into the fire, Nebuchadnezzar sees something in the fire that surprises him.
When Nebuchadnezzar looked in the fire he saw what looked like “a son of the gods” in the fire with them walking around unharmed. He called for them to come out of the fire and when they did everyone could see that the fire didn’t touch them. God’s power was proven to everyone who saw what happened. God saved Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego from the fire and Nebuchadnezzar professed faith in God after seeing this testimony.
The account of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego is a remarkable true story about God’s saving power. But there is a detail we can not miss. How did God save them?
God sent his son to walk around in the fire with them. God’s own son protected them from the evil of the world and saved them from wrath. And hundreds of years after that happened, God sent his son again, in the form of a person to do that for everyone. Because God sent his one and only son, anyone who professes faith in him will be saved just like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego was. Jesus protects us from the evil of this world and saves us from experiencing God’s final wrath.
Daniel 3:17-18- 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. 18 But even if he doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up.”
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego had great faith. They believed God would save them from the fire. But there is a phrase that adds to their faith. “But even if he doesn’t”.
We can have faith for all kinds of things, but our faith is made complete when we affirm that God is still God even if He doesn’t seem to come through. Even if He doesn’t save. Even if God doesn’t answer us, are we willing to be like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego and refuse to compromise on things we know are wrong?
Parents, 3treesKIDS will also be learning about the life of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego this Sunday, both in-person and online.
Be sure to check out their lesson at www.3trees.com/kids.
To find service times and locations, visit https://www.3trees.com/planyourvisit.