Sunday, November 16, 2008

Daniel

I am now reading in the book of Daniel. What a fun, strange, inspiring book to read, especially after the depressing prophecies of Jeremiah! The confidence in God that is displayed by Daniel and his 3 friends is just wonderful. Their confidence gives them courage to follow God regardless of the consequences. I just love Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednigo's speech to Nebuchadnezzar.

Daniel 3:16-18 Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to the king, "O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. 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."

And then there is the description of Daniel's actions when a later king, Darius, makes it illegal to worship anything except himself for a month.

Daniel 6:10 Now when Daniel learned that the decree had been published, he went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before.

Not only did he continue to pray to God, in front of his open window, but he continued to give thanks to God! It is hard to give thanks to God in times of difficulty, but Daniel did it, even as he was being set up to be killed by the lions. And he didn't know that God was going to rescue Him from the lions. Just like his 3 friends didn't know that God was going to rescue them from the fire they were facing. They had been taken captive, removed from their families, sent to live in a foreign land full of foreign gods and customs, yet they clung to God no matter what the cost was to them.

May we be as faithful to God, as confident in Him, and as couragous for Him as they were!
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