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Daniel & the Hebrew Boys As Examples for Us
by Karon Webster
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Daniel & the Hebrew Boys As Examples for Us Copyright © Karon Webster

Discussion Questions, p. 84 Old Testament Survey Part 2; Job-Malachi

2. How were Daniel (Chapter 6) and his three friends (Chapter 3) examples to those saints who would suffer severe persecution in the future?

In the third chapter of the book of Daniel, King Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon erects a giant statue and orders that everyone in his kingdom bow down and worship it when the royal band plays. The three Hebrew boys, Shadrach, Meshech, and Abednego, refuse to worship the statue because the God of their fathers strictly forbid idol worship. Shadrach, Meshech, and Abednego are miraculously and powerfully delivered from a raging fiery furnace. "Daniel 3:28. Then Nebuchadnezzar spake, and said, Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in him, and have changed the king's word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God." King Nebuchadnezzar was so astonished and impressed that he decreed that no person in his kingdom may speak against the God of Shadrach, Meshech, and Abednego, or suffer death by dismemberment and have their homes made into sewage dumps.

Likewise, in the sixth chapter of Daniel, his fellow presidents and princes plot to trap him, and get the then King Darius to throw him into the Lion's den. They have the King to make a law prohibiting petitioning anyone (God or man) but the king for thirty days. As was his custom, Daniel prayed toward Jerusalem three times a day from his home. The presidents and princes caught him there praying and told King Darius, who, according to his own country's law, had Daniel thrown into a den of hungry lions. God delivered faithful Daniel from the lion's den unscratched, and King Darius is so impressed that he too was moved to legislate acknowledgement of the God of Israel. He decreed "...that in every dominion of my kingdom men tremble and fear before the God of Daniel: for he is the living God, and stedfast for ever, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed, and his dominion shall be even unto the end. 27. He delivereth and rescueth, and he worketh signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who hath delivered Daniel from the power of the lions." Daniel 6:26-27. Daniel and his three friends suffered severe persecution in Babylon and under the Medes and Persians. The scriptural account relates that Daniel, Shadrach, Meshech, and Abednego were steadfast and unwavering in their devotion to God almighty during their prolonged and unnatural captivity, and in the face of what seemed to be certain death. Their powerful faithfulness to God got them into trouble with their new idol worshipping captor neighbors, but that same unyielding faithfulness to God delivered them out of their troubles, and into God's and their captors' favor. Standing on God's Word and his commandments in Babylon, fearless (or so it seemed) before their captors made them examples of God's power and love to Babylon, and thereby, the then known world. Daniel, Shadrach, Meshech, and Abednego were examples to the apostles and the early church through their faithfulness. When they and their fellow members were being arrested, beaten, jailed, fed to lions, crucified, and beheaded, early church members could read and remember Daniel's book, and draw strength and encouragement from it. Daniel and his comrades were examples in the way they trusted God with their lives, and accepted his choices for them. They were examples in their courage, standing up to neighbors, princes, presidents, and Kings. They are examples to saints today in how to live for Christ without compromise or fear at home, work, or school.They are examples for future saints, who will come under trouble such as this world has never before known, to trust God, no matter what, always.

Written by: Karon Webster

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