Daniel 3 … Consider Him Who Is Able to Deliver

“If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king,” (3:17).

I never cease to be confounded by those who reject the Truth of God; for as His Word declares, He has in fact made Himself known to His creation as evidenced by His creation, so that we are really without excuse.

because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse, (Romans 1:19-20).

And how much more was Nebuchadnezzar without excuse after God had proven Himself as the Only Wise God Who Reveals Mysteries through His servant Daniel, as he both conveyed and interpreted the king’s confusing dream. And the king’s immediate response was seemingly more than appropriate.

Then King Nebuchadnezzar fell on his face and did homage to Daniel, and gave orders to present to him an offering and fragrant incense. 47 The king answered Daniel and said, “Surely your God is a God of gods and a Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries, since you have been able to reveal this mystery,” (Daniel 2:46-47).

While Nebuchadnezzar did fall on his face, he only acknowledged God as “a God of gods and a Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries.” In his pagan nation, worshipping more than one god was not only acceptable, it was also the expected norm, as well as the worship of humans as gods. The king’s homage was actually offered to Daniel.

It seems the king was still very far away from the Truth, for allegiance to our own concept of God rather than to Him in Truth will always prove to be fleeting and short-lived; demonstrated in Nebuchadnezzar setting up his great gold-plated statue, ninety-feet in height and nine-feet in width, and commanding everyone in his kingdom to fall down and worship the golden image.

Nebuchadnezzar the king made an image of gold, the height of which was sixty cubits and its width six cubits; he set it up on the plain of Dura in the province of Babylon…Then the herald loudly proclaimed: “To you the command is given, O peoples, nations and men of every language, that at the moment you hear the sound of the horn, flute, lyre, trigon, psaltery, bagpipe and all kinds of music, you are to fall down and worship the golden image that Nebuchadnezzar the king has set up,” (3:1, 4-5).

Nebuchadnezzar’s actions are particularly described in Paul’s letter to the church in Rome.

For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures, (Romans 1:21-23).

While today’s text does not tell us into what exact form this golden image had been fashioned, I couldn’t help but wonder if Nebuchadnezzar’s oversized statue, plated with gold and commanding the worship of all, was his own tribute to himself. After all, when Daniel interpreted the king’s dream, Nebuchadnezzar learned that he was the head of gold.

You, O king, are the king of kings, to whom the God of heaven has given the kingdom, the power, the strength and the glory; 38 and wherever the sons of men dwell, or the beasts of the field, or the birds of the sky, He has given them into your hand and has caused you to rule over them all. You are the head of gold,” (Daniel 2:37-38).

Again, it’s dumbfounding to ponder how one could have had such an encounter with Almighty God and then proceed as though it made no difference whatsoever. But pride has a way of blinding us to reality.

And perhaps Nebuchadnezzar was trying to disprove the prophetic mystery revealed by eliminating the other metals of the prophecy and making the entire image of gold, as if attempting to secure his place in history as the powerful, invincible ruler forevermore.

And in his arrogance, he asks a question; a question he really should have been able to answer from his own personal experience with the Only Wise God Who Reveals Mysteries.

“…But if you do not worship, you will immediately be cast into the midst of a furnace of blazing fire; and what god is there who can deliver you out of my hands?” (3:15).

Consider Him Who Is Able to Deliver

Two forces were in question here; two forces the king of Babylon was so certain of; two forces threatening the well-being of these three young faithful servants of the Most High God.

The first force is the “furnace of blazing fire.” Scripture often speaks of fire in reference to the trials and tribulations brought on by events and situations of life. And the second force is the “hand,” which most often represents the power and control wielded by one’s hand.

And it was from these two forces that Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego needed Deliverance. Deliverance from the trial and tribulation they faced in the unfolding events that had situated them under the king’s emphatic castigation; and deliverance from the power and control this king now wielded over their lives.

And while they were in need of His Deliverance, they were certainly not in need of convincing.

“If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king,” (3:17).

And in the face of the trials and tribulations of the “furnace of blazing fire,” and despite the power and control wielded by this great king’s “hand,” these three knew Truth. He Is Able to Deliver.

  • He Is Able to Deliver out of the Furnace of Blazing Fire because He has overcome the world
    • “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world,” (John 16:33).
  • He Is Able to Deliver out of the Hand of the enemy because He has conquered death and sin.
    •  O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” 56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; 57 but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ, (1 Corinthians 15:55-57).
  • He Is Able to Deliver because He was Delivered Up for us all.
    • What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things? (Romans 8:31-32).
  • He Is Able to Deliver because of His Inseparable Presence
    • Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astounded and stood up in haste; he said to his high officials, “Was it not three men we cast bound into the midst of the fire?” They replied to the king, “Certainly, O king.” 25 He said, “Look! I see four men loosed and walking about in the midst of the fire without harm, and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods!” (3:24-25).
      • Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?37 But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord, (Romans 8:35, 37-39).

How do we respond to Him Who Is Able to Deliver?

Oh, that we would learn from Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego. For what trial could we face or what power could be wielded against us that is beyond Him Who Is Able to Deliver?

Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego replied to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to give you an answer concerning this matter. 17 If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. 18 But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.” (3:16-17).

Currently, I am praying for what feels like far too many critically serious needs: physical illnesses, mental health issues, family and legal matters, salvation and restoration of loved ones. And if I am honest, all of them feel overdue as I wait for Him Who Is Able to Deliver, to Deliver.

But today we are reminded, it is His choice to Deliver, and His choice in how. And I am sure that you, like me, desire to have the faith of these three young men, to face events, situations, and the threats of the enemy with bold confidence in our God Who is Able to Deliver as we trust the outcome to Him.

After all, the furnace of the blazing fire really shouldn’t surprise us; He told us to expect it. Let us trust Him Who Is Able to Deliver as He purifies and proves our faith that our lives would be like Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego; that we too would bring Him praise, glory, and honor as we walk with Him through the fire.

In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; (1 Peter 1:6-7).

And we must also remember, that while we do face a real enemy, his hand is so very puny and feeble compared to the hand of Him Who Is Able to Deliver and will soon crush the enemy under our feet.

The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you, (Romans 16:20).

We are not promised Deliverance from every trial and tribulation in this life, but we are promised eternal Deliverance from the enemy of our soul.

While we walk through this life, let us ask Him to strengthen our faith like that of Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego, that we would trust Him in whatever He allows in this life, fully confident in Him Who Is Able to Deliver us to His Heavenly Kingdom to be with Him forever.

And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever. Amen! (2 Timothy 4:18 NKJV).

Let’s Grow Together!

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