Four in the Flames

God continues working on Nebuchadnezzar's heart.

Daniel 3 (5)

Introduction
God was working on Nebuchadnezzar. Where three men had been cast into the fiery furnace, four now were visible to the king. We do not know whether anyone else saw this vision; I suspect not. God was making Himself known to Nebuchadnezzar, because He intended to do a great work in him, as we shall see. It was not unlike God to reveal Himself in mysterious ways for the deliverance of His people, as we see in the case of Lot.

Read Genesis 19.1-17.

Read Daniel 3.24-27.

Think it Through

1.  Nebuchadnezzar “was astonished”. Why? What astonished him? How would you compare this vision with the dream God sent Nebuchadnezzar in chapter 2? Was it more vivid? More mysterious? Does it seem that God was ratcheting-up His revelation of Himself to Nebuchadnezzar? Explain.

2.  Notice how Nebuchadnezzar addressed Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego in verse 26. Is this significant? What was their appearance when they emerged from the fiery furnace? How would that have affected those who saw them, especially given what we read in verse 22? What happened to the fourth person in the flames? The Aramaic word for have power (v. 27)indicates inability to affect, rule, or exert force upon. Is there a spiritual message in this for us who are the “servants of the Most High God”?

Meditate
“…this angel of the Son of God foreshadows our Lord Jesus Christ, who descended into the furnace of hell, in which the souls of both sinners and of the righteous are imprisoned, in order that he might without suffering any scorching by fire or injury to his person deliver those who were held imprisoned by chains of death.” Jerome (347-420 AD)

Then Pilate said to Him, “Are You not speaking to me? Do You not know that I have power to crucify You, and power to release You?” Jesus answered, “You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above.” John 19.10, 11

“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” Acts 1.8

I have power from You, O Lord, to be Your faithful witness, like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. Help me to draw on that power today as I…

Pray Psalm 115.1-3.

Psalm 115.1-3 (Plainfield: Nothing But the Blood of Jesus)
Not to us, O God, not us, but unto Your Name give glory!
For Your love and faithfulness, ever to Your Name be glory!
Why should the nations cry, “Where is their God on high?”
You rule us, Lord, on high: Ever to Your Name be glory!

T. M Moore

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Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. All psalms for singing adapted from The Ailbe Psalter. All quotations from Church Fathers from Ancient Christian Commentary Series, General Editor Thomas C. Oden (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2006.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in Essex Junction, VT. 

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