You have faith, but do you have unbending faith? Unshakable, tenacious, and doesn’t bow to compromise, coercion, and threats kind of faith. Check out this Bible hall-of-faith story.
In around 585 BC, King Nebuchadnezzar had a gold statue made. It was 90 feet high and 9 feet wide. The king set the figure in the plain of Dura in Babylon. Then his administrators, governors, counselors, treasurers, judges, magistrates, and provincial officials assembled for the dedication.
As everyone stood before the image the king erected, a herald shouted out:
O people of all nations and languages, this is the king’s command:
When the band strikes up, you are to fall flat on the ground to worship King Nebuchadnezzar’s gold statue; anyone who refuses to obey will immediately be thrown into a flaming furnace. (Dan 3:4-6, TLB)
So, the band played, and all the people bowed and worshiped the gold image.
Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah (whom the Chaldeans called Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego) had unbending faith in God and refused to bow down and worship a man-made statue.
Remember Daniel 2? This same king killed his advisors when they couldn’t tell the king his dream. But Daniel and his friends prayed, and God told Daniel the vision and what it meant. God promoted Daniel as ruler over the province and his friends over various affairs of the realm.
Now, some Chaldean advisors went to the king and said:
“There are certain Jews whom you have set over the affairs of the province of Babylon: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego; these men, O king, have not paid due regard to you. They do not serve your gods or worship the gold image which you have set up” (Dan 3:12)
Furious, the king had the three brought before him. He gave them an ultimatum. Bow to the image or be thrown into the fiery furnace. Then with great audacity, he asked, “And what god will save you from my power then?” (Dan 3:13-15)
|Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego [Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah] answered the king, “Your question doesn’t require an answer from us. Your majesty, if our God, whom we serve, is able to save us, he will save us from the blazing hot furnace and from your power. But even if he doesn’t, we want you to know, your majesty, that we will neither serve your gods nor worship the gold statue which you have set up.” (Dan 3:16-18, NKJV)|
The king was now unhinged, his face visibly contorted. He ordered the furnace heated seven times hotter than usual. Then he called his strongest men to tie up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego in their cloaks, tunics, and robes and throw them into the blazing hot furnace. Unfortunately, the king’s men were consumed by the fire when they opened the furnace and threw Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego in. (Dan 3:19-23)
Suddenly, King Nebuchadnezzar jumped to his feet, astonished. He asked his advisors, “Didn’t we throw three men bound into the flames?” They answered, “Yes, of course.” (Dan 3:24)
The king exclaimed, “Look, I see
Nebuchadnezzar approached the blazing hot furnace door and said, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego! You servants of the Most-High God, come out and come here.” (Dan 3:26)
They came out, and the king and his counselors saw these men on whose bodies the fire had no power. Not a hair singed or garment burned. Not even the smell of fire was on them. (Dan 3:27)
The Lord is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Heb 13:8). He will send angels to deliver the heirs of salvation out of harm’s way (Heb 1:14). The Lord is always on the side of believers who have a no-compromise attitude and unbending faith in Him.