- Courage Abounding in Conviction: Part 4
- Courage Abounding in Conviction: Introduction
- Courage Abounding in Conviction: Part 1, The Book of Daniel
- Courage Abounding in Conviction: Part 2, The Book of Daniel
- Courage Abounding in Conviction: Part 3, The Book Of Daniel
“There are certain Jews whom thou hast set over the affairs of the province of Babylon, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego; these men, O king, have not regarded thee: they serve not thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.” (Daniel 3:12)
If you have been born-again for any length of time, you have walked through what the prophet Joel calls, “the valley of decision” (Joel 3:14). In our Christian walk, God will allow His children to enter situations that will test their devotion. In these fiery trials, we have to make a decision. Will we compromise with the enemy? Or will we stand with our loins girt about with truth, and see the hand of God move in our circumstances?
In chapter three of Daniel, we have three of God’s faithful representatives who refused to worship any god other than the One True and Living God. They held to the conviction that God was, and is, not a work of man’s hands; despite the consequences that would be suffered. In doing so, they experienced an awesome victory that so many of us fail to see because of our double-minded attempt to serve God. When Jesus says “Hold fast,” we give in; “Watch,” we sleep; or “Stand,” we fall. Our flesh just seems to take the reins. But the gentlemen in our devotion today endured hardships as good soldiers of Christ Jesus. These men became, to our day, a beacon of light to our consciences; communicating to us to stand on the convictions of the Word of God, and He will surely deliver us for His glory. Amen.
In the text verse we see a most commendable accusation by the servants of the King Nebuchadnezzar against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. They refused to bow to the beastly image of gold. Note the following:
They stood for the conviction of the Commandments of God; as did Daniel in the first chapter, as he purposed in his heart not to defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat. In Daniel 3:18, these brave young men said they would not serve the king’s gods, nor worship the golden image which the king had set up. Their minds were made up. Too many people are in the churches today with an indecisive spirit. We need to make up our mind to serve and stand with our God. In Joshua 24:15, after the children of Israel came out of Egypt, Joshua makes a determined statement. He says, “…as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” To stand with the Word and Counsel of God, we must make up our minds. These men are shining examples of an unmoveable spirit in the things of God.
Next we see the results of standing for the Word of God. These men immediately received condemnation from the enemy. Verse 20 states, “And he commanded the most mighty men that were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace.” After we make up our minds to stand for the Kingdom of God, we must make preparations in our hearts to suffer persecution. Peter tells us, as Christ suffered in the flesh, we must arm ourselves likewise with the same mind (1 Peter 4:1). And Paul writes, “…all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution” (2 Timothy 3:12). When we look in the Book of Acts, we see the Thessalonian Church and the Ephesian Church, as well as the Apostles of our Lord, suffer persecution. It’s inevitable!! The furnace of affliction is an appointment all we Christians must face at one point or another.
Finally, we see that when we stand for God, God will stand for us. These young men stood for God, and entered the furnace; but were delivered by a mighty hand. Verses 24 and 25 say, “Did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire? … Lo, I see four…” Jesus will always walk with us through our persecutions and spiritual warfare that come on us as a result of standing for His Name’s sake. Paul tells us in Hebrews 13:5 that God would never leave us nor forsake us. Though we go into our persecutions bound by the enemy, Jesus will bring us out loosed in His power. As a result of standing for God, we will watch God get the glory in and through our lives as He exalts us in His Kingdom, as these men were exalted because of their faithfulness.
“Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.” (Psalms 119:9)
“It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes.” (Psalms 119:71)
“Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.” (Psalms 34:19)
These verses bring much comfort to the suffering saint. We can rest assured that God has a purpose in our “furnace.” Though Satan enjoys torturing the committed Job, we must understand that God is the universal sovereign Lord and Master; and nothing is happening within the lives of His offspring that doesn’t hold a tremendous amount of purpose. Hold fast, stand, and wait patiently; because after ye have suffered a while, God will make you perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you (1 Peter 5:10). To Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.