TEXT: Dan. 1:1-7
1. Statler Bros. song "The Fourth Man2. 605 B.C. Daniel / 3 of his friends brought into the company of Nebuchadnezzar.3. Dan 3:1
a. 90 ft. H x 9ft. W; Cubit = 18 inches.b. Unknown what the image was could have been either Nebuchadnezzar or one of his gods (Dan. 2:38)
4. Dan 3:2-3 All officials were to come to this dedication / unveiling.5. Nebuchadnezzar soon would realize the heart of a true servant can not be threatened.
I. THEY DID NOT BEND.
A. Dan 3:4
1. Nebuchadnezzar commanded the statue be worshipped by all.2. When the sound was given no matter what time it was heard they were to fall down and worship.
B. Dan 3:6-7 A king who governed by fear.
1. Thought he had a right to be worshipped; they owed it to him.2. If they disliked it they would be thrown in the fire.
C. Dan 3:8 Their refusal to waver drew contempt from Chaldeans; jealous..D. Dan 3:9
1. Reminded him of his decree.2. Now they would prejudice his mind against the Jews.
E. Dan 3:11
1. They had been observing and watching them.2. Scoping them out and collecting information.
II. THEY DID NOT BOW.
A. Dan 3:13
1. He was enraged that they would be so defiant.2. To his credit he gave them a 2nd chance.
B. Dan 3:14
1. First he asked if it was true.2. If there is ever an accusation made against someone, before we accept it, find out if it is true or not.3. In his eyes, he had promoted them and helped them. How dare they not do what he wants?
C. Dan 3:15
1. Reason of the whole situation.2. He still needs to learn about God.
D. Dan 3:16
1. Does not mean they did not care they just were not full of care about answering.2. Shows great faith.3. Understood that they were in the hands of Jehovah.
E. Dan 3:17-18
1. They had faith God would deliver them.2. Even if God did not save them, they would not serve the idols.3. They stood against the majority even at the threshold of death they were not going to bow.4. If they had worshiped the image they would have been lost.
F. Dan 3:19 - 23
1. The biggest and strongest men were to tie them up.2. Wanted to make sure they did not get away.
III. THEY DID NOT BURN.
A. Dan 3:24-26
1. He recognized that their God was the most high God.2. He delivered them.
B. Dan 3:27
1. We can smell someone who has been smoking.2. These men had not even the smell of fire or smoke everyone saw it!
C. Dan 3:28
1. They yielded their bodies as sacrifices.2. Rome did not persecute Christians because they believed in God, but because they would not worship any other god; they wanted people to worship Caesar as a god.3. Nebuchadnezzar was not opposed to them having a God, but did not like them not worshiping him.
D. Dan 3:29
1. Nebuchadnezzar was impressed.2. Hananiah, Mishael, Azariah made some decisions which sealed their positions with God.3. How far are we willing to go?
4. The world like Nebuchadnezzar wants us to compromise our values and spiritual position; wants to influence and be our god. Have we let it?
1. We have choices every day that will affect our relationship with the Lord.2. Some will choose to ignore His teaching.3. Some will have the intentions of being religious but be influenced by biblical error or a secular society.4. Some will respond to the saving gospel by repenting and obeying and being baptized into Christ so to be added to His one and only church and have your sins taken care of.5. What will you choose to do? How far are you willing to go to remain faithful?