Daniel 3:17-18 If this be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king. (18) But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up."
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were pressured to deny God, but they chose to be faithful to him no matter what happened! They trusted God to deliver them, but they were determined to be faithful regardless of the consequences. If God always rescued those who were true to him, Christians would not need faith. Their religion would be a great insurance policy, and there would be lines of selfish people ready to sign up. We should be faithful to serve God whether he intervenes on our behalf or not. Our eternal reward is worth any suffering we may have to endure first.
I see three principles in our two verses today: Faith, Hope, and Trust.
Look at what the three Hebrews said again: "Our God is able...Our God will...We will not bow to your gods"
Faith says, "God can." Hope says, "God will." Trust says, "I will praise Him still."
As we read this story, we must remember that these men didn't know the outcome like we do. They were facing a fiery furnace, had undoubtedly heard of the many others who had been incinerated by the same furnace they were now looking at. Standing there, maybe even looking at the furnace they declare their faith, hope and trust in Jehovah God.
Doubt certainly tried to bully faith. Fear you know tried to crowd out hope. Offense more than likely tried to push around trust.
That's what happens to us isn't it? When we are standing on God's Word, believing Him for a miracle, filling our mind with His promises, surrounding ourselves with faith filled individuals, our faith, hope and trust soar. But all three are tested when you come face to face with the "fiery furnace" At that point, its you, God, and the enemy of your soul. God reassuring you through His Holy Spirit, and satan trying to distract you with doubt, fear and offense. And it is up to you what you will do. You will either give in and "bow" to the enemy because of doubt, fear or offense, or you stand firm on God's Word. In our verses these three men fought off the enemies ploys and stood firm and God gave them the victory!
Today, you're not facing a "fiery furnace", but may you are facing a "fiery trial":
1 Peter 4:12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.
Peter reminds us that everyone goes through fiery trials in this life. Maybe your fiery trial is finances, or marital situations, or health issues. Maybe you are facing an impossible situation where you feel hopeless. If you feel hopeless, please read the next verse slowly, and put it in the crock pot of your mind:
Romans 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.
God is your source of HOPE. So you are not hopeless, but you are helpless. You have tried everything you can think of for relief in your situation, but you keep coming up empty. You are HELPLESS, but NOT hopeless:
2 Corinthians 12:9 But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Through your weakness (helplessness) Jesus' power is made strong. So, again, you are not hopeless, but you may be helpless. But God specializes in helpless, impossible situations, like the ones the three Hebrews found themselves in, and maybe you find yourself in. That is when you declare your faith, hope and trust in Jesus Christ!
The subjects of our story today had to go into the fiery furnace, but God miraculously delivered them. When they came out of the furnace, there was not even the smell of fire. The same God that did that for Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, can do the same for you. Declare your confidence in God. Let the enemy know right now that you believe with all of your heart that: God is able to deliver you, that is faith. That He will deliver you, that is hope. And regardless of how the situation turns out, you will give God praise, that is trust!
Walk in victory today, because God can, God will, and you will praise Him still.
"Lord, I am so thankful for faith, hope and trust. Faith declares: God can. Hope shouts: God will. But Trust whispers: I will praise Him still. I am determined today to declare my faith, hope, and trust in You. The fiery trials I am facing did not take You by surprise. I feel hopeless, but I know I am not. I AM helpless, but in that weakness is when You are more real, and show Your power in great ways. Thank You in advance for the victory. My God is able, and will deliver me, and I will never bow to the god of this world. In Jesus name, amen!"