Posted by: mikenicholsblog | October 2, 2009

fire rated faith

As a child, you were probably taught the great lesson of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego (don’t you miss the youthful excitement of hearing stories like this one). For not serving the gods of Nebuchadnezzar, and worshipping the image of gold he had erected, they were thrown into the fiery furnace. Nebuchadnezzer got so mad, he ordered the furnace seven times hotter than usual. Imagine the life and death faith these men ran were tested with leading up to the epic moment of being thrown the furnace. Was the faith they modeled about the assurance of rescue, or about their undying trust in their God? As we answer that question, it will be obvious that there are parallels to journey experiences we face, only likely in cooler circumstances.

Daniel 3:17-18
If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we
serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from
your hand, O king. But even if he does not, we want you to
know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or
worship the image of gold you have set up.

Certain death would be their fate if “He does not.”  But “He did” miraculously protect them from the flames.  A great story to teach, but an even greater reality was the way that Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego approached  the  moment of  truth with allegiance to our God. No matter what God would do, they would not bow down. Today or tomorrow on our journey, all of us will be confronted with an issue of faith. Like our friends from the Old Testament, we won’t know what the Father will choose to do. How will we navigate our epic moment(s)?  Obedient faith when we don’t know the outcome, is the choice we too can make … but will we?

Defining moments will test us to the core. And we can live with obedient hearts, even without knowing what the Father will choose. Whether you are a new believer or a long time servant, filling yourself with the Word will be great preparation for the moment. My experience has taught me that all the love, care and encouragement others can give will never take the place of letting God prepare us as we seek Him. Below are two verses I think the fiery furnace trio would have affirmed.  And I trust we all will, as well, as we remain steadfast in the Word preparing for our fiery moments.

Jeremiah 32:17
Ah, sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens
and the earth by your great power and outstretched
arm. Nothing is too hard for you.

Habakkuk 3:17-19
Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes
on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields
produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and
no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD,
I will be joyful in God my Strength;  he makes my feet
like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on to the heights.

Being certain that difficulties will come, should move us to the Truth. Be obedient!



  1. Thanks for the words of encouragement- and especailly the Habakkuk passage.

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