Faithlife Sermons

March 18

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Daniel 3:16–18 KJV 1900
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.

The Normal Narrative

Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah
Refusal to defile themselves
Finding places of prominence if we stay true
Being gifted with abilities, both in leadership and spiritual gifting (Daniel revealed and interpreted dreams)
Being persecuted, but still having one like the Son of God in the midst of the fire with us and coming out untouched
No sooner had the flame been lit to devour our bodies when it went out again; the fire of the overheated ovens was lulled by the Lord’s dew. And it was not difficult for those of faith to believe that modern marvels could equal those o f old in view o f the Lord’s promise through the spirit, for he who caused that deed of glory in favor of the three youths was also victorious in us.
The grand narrative - Staying true to God and Him only pays off
A story of Montanus and Lucius, from about 253 A.D., under the rule of Valerian in Carthage
The grand narrative - Staying true to God and Him only pays off

The Other Narrative - Nebuchadnezzar

Raided Jerusalem, took Israelites into slavery
Stole from the Temple
Destroyed the Temple in 587/586 BC on his third siege/invasion of Jerusalem
Hungry not only for power, but to be worshipped as a god
Persecuted
Also…seemingly repentant at times, only to still hold on to things of the world (his old ways)
The statue to worship remained even after the ordeal of the fiery furnace
The grand narrative here - We shouldn’t be so surprised to see people back and forth between the flesh and acknowledging Christ.
People, family, friends, that we witness to, pray for…they may go through cycles, but there is hope in the end. Ultimately, after being brought very low…living as an animal, banished for 7 years, he was restored to his kingdom. He reigned until about 562, when he died around the age of 83 or 84 after reigning for 43 years.
There is hope, even when we don’t see it now…restoration is possible.
the spirit, for he who caused that deed of glory in favor of the three
A story of Montanus and Lucius, from about 253 A.D., under the rule of Valerian in Carthage

An Alternative Narrative

One can’t stand without the other, they are linked, woven together
We are linked, woven into a world which we don’t belong
Lessons to be learned from both sides, but the best lesson is taken together
We live our lives…full of faith, steadfast, and without need to justify our faith. Just live…and not bend a knee to the wrong idle. Through that, more than our words, we will lead some Nebuchadnezzar’s to change their mind
For those that may be a Nebuchadnezzar…wavering back and forth, or in a desperate low point…there is hope of restoration.
Hebrews 6:12 KJV 1900
That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.
One leads to the other…we are to be salt, and light, as believers…and not give up hope for those around us. We should be a reminder of how an encounter with God can forever change your path and life.
Look around, find someone faithful in life, not just on Sunday, but everyday. They can
No defense needed…Just live
Daniel 3:16–18 KJV 1900
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.
Daniel 3:16
youths was also victorious in us.
Daniel 3:16–18 NRSV
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to present a defense to you in this matter. If our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire and out of your hand, O king, let him deliver us. But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods and we will not worship the golden statue that you have set up.”
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