Nebuchadnezzar creates an image and dedicates it
Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold, sixty cubits high and six
cubits wide, and set it up on the plain of Dura in the province
then summoned the satraps, prefects, governors, advisers, treasurers,
judges, magistrates and all the other provincial officials to
come to the dedication of the image he had set up.
the satraps, prefects, governors, advisers, treasurers, judges,
magistrates and all the other provincial officials assembled for
the dedication of the image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up,
and they stood before it.
Time must have moved on because we last saw Nebuchadnezzar exalting
the Lord but now he is setting up a massive statue or image and
holds a big celebration to dedicate it.]
Everyone is commanded to worship the Image on pain of death
the herald loudly proclaimed, “Nations and peoples of every language,
this is what you are commanded to do:
soon as you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp,
pipe and all kinds of music, you must fall down and worship the
image of gold that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up.
does not fall down and worship will immediately be thrown into
a blazing furnace.”
as soon as they heard the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre,
harp and all kinds of music, all the nations and peoples of every
language fell down and worshiped the image of gold that King Nebuchadnezzar
had set up.
Moreover he now requires that everyone must bow down and worship
this idol at a regular (assumed) playing by the court musicians.]
Some astrologers denounce the three Jews
this time some astrologers came forward and denounced the Jews.
said to King Nebuchadnezzar, “May the king live forever!
Majesty has issued a decree that everyone who hears the sound
of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipe and all kinds of
music must fall down and worship the image of gold,
that whoever does not fall down and worship will be thrown into
a blazing furnace.
there are some Jews whom you have set over the affairs of the
province of Babylon—Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego—who pay no
attention to you, Your Majesty. They neither serve your gods nor
worship the image of gold you have set up.”
Daniel for some reason escapes what follows (perhaps he is too
powerful) but his three friends who had been established as administrators
[2:49] are reported to the king for not bowing before this idol.]
The King challenges the three Jews & they express faith in
with rage, Nebuchadnezzar summoned Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego.
So these men were brought before the king,
Nebuchadnezzar said to them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach and
Abednego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the image of
gold I have set up?
when you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp,
pipe and all kinds of music, if you are ready to fall down and
worship the image I made, very good. But if you do not worship
it, you will be thrown immediately into a blazing furnace. Then
what god will be able to rescue you from my hand?”
Meshach and Abednego replied to him, “King Nebuchadnezzar, we
do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter.
we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God
we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver
us from Your Majesty's hand.
But even if he does not , we want you to know,
Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship
the image of gold you have set up.”
The three young men are taken before the king and make one of
those statements that has become famous as a declaration of faith
The King has them thrown into a tremendous furnace
Nebuchadnezzar was furious with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego,
and his attitude toward them changed. He ordered the furnace heated
seven times hotter than usual
commanded some of the strongest soldiers in his army to tie up
Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego and throw them into the blazing
these men, wearing their robes, trousers, turbans and other clothes,
were bound and thrown into the blazing furnace.
king's command was so urgent and the furnace so hot that the flames
of the fire killed the soldiers who took up Shadrach, Meshach
these three men, firmly tied, fell into the blazing furnace.
The events that follow show a potential death that cannot be avoided
– they are to be thrown into an incredibly hot furnace, so hot
that even those who took them there died.]
A Miracle of Deliverance occurs
King Nebuchadnezzar leaped to his feet in amazement and asked
his advisers, “Weren't there three men that we tied up and threw
into the fire?” They replied, “Certainly, Your Majesty.”
said, “Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound
and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.”
then approached the opening of the blazing furnace and shouted,
“Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, servants of the Most High God,
come out! Come here!” So Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego came out
of the fire,
the satraps, prefects, governors and royal advisers crowded around
them. They saw that the fire had not harmed their bodies, nor
was a hair of their heads singed; their robes were not scorched,
and there was no smell of fire on them.
The onlooking king suddenly sees FOUR men walking around in the
furnace. The fourth one, we assume, is the Son of God or possibly
an angel. The other amazing thing is that none of them is being
affected by the heat. The king calls them out and they come out
with absolutely no sign of the experience on them.]
The King acknowledges the Lord again
Nebuchadnezzar said, “Praise be to the God of Shadrach, Meshach
and Abednego, who has sent his angel and rescued his servants!
They trusted in him and defied the king's command and were willing
to give up their lives rather than serve or worship any god except
their own God.
I decree that the people of any nation or language who say anything
against the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego be cut into
pieces and their houses be turned into piles of rubble, for no
other god can save in this way.”
the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in the province
The king, a second time, acknowledges the Lord, accepting he has
clearly witnessed a miracle. He also acknowledges their faith.
He decrees that no one in the kingdom shall say anything negative
about their God, and promotes them.]
to chapter 4