Tuesday, June 22, 2010

In the Fire

We've all heard the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego but have we really ever listened to it? Our pastor this sizzling hot summer is doing a series on "Hot Stuff" in the Bible! He started this past week with Daniel 3.

The story is about a power hungry king- Nebuchadnezzar, who sends out a decree that everyone is to worship a 90 foot tall 9 foot wide golden idol. Whoever didn't fall down to worship this huge idol woudl be thrown into the fiery furnace. Enter Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego... three 20 year old men who stood up against peer pressure! They refused to bow down to this idol which incensed the king, so much so that he immediately had them brought to them. He was mad! I mean, he was an all powerful king, right? He gave them a second chance to once again bow down... to which they once again refused! Could you have done this knowing that this king meant what he said and that your answer to this could very well lead to your demise? Well, they answered true to their beliefs! In fact they answered that God was a most powerful God who could save them, BUT IF NOT they were still faithful and would NOT bow down to his idol! So they were thrown into the furnace- only of course, after it was heated up 7 times hotter, after they were tied up and then brought to the edge of the furnace to be thrown in by the strongest he-men of the kings army. This is amazing, because as they were held next to the furnace about to be thrown in they see their captors literally burn to death due to the heat. They fell into the furnace where suddenly there weren't just 3 men anymore but 4 were now seen. They were untied and walking around with a form in the likes of the "son of God"! The king was amazed and immediately had them brought out of the furnace and a new decree was set out for everyone to worship the one and only true God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego.

So, here are the lessons to learn....
1. The world Falls at the feet of power and fame! We don't have to
2. Sometimes you have to offend people! Peer pressure never goes away!
3. Obeying God can get you in a "hot" spot!
4. God is God and we are not, He can do it, BUT He may not! Show your faith- GOD IS ABLE!
Hope- pray for it, know it! Believe it- Commitment, stand firm!
*Do your BEST and leave the results to Him
* Practice a defiant "BUT IF NOT" Faith
5. Expect to Roast for your convictions
6. Jesus meets us in the furnace- their pinnacle moment of their lives was when they walked in the furnace! They walked with the Son of God! Wow!
7. God stands with those who stand for him!

Take away from the story- Be willing to Go into the furnace for Christ
Have a "but if not" Faith!

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