Suffering for Christ allows the reality of Christ to become manifest. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego trusted and honored Christ who was known to them as Yahweh. They would not bow to Nebuchadnezzar when the king demanded they worship a 90 foot tall golden idol. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego chose the fiery furnace over idolatry. The furnace was turned up seven times hotter because they refused to submit to Nebuchadnezzar’s wicked requirement. Strong men from Nebuchadnezzar’s military tied these men up in their hats, coats, clothes and shoes and threw them into the burning fiery furnace. The heat of the furnace killed the strong military men who threw God’s servants into the furnace.
Suddenly Nebuchadnezzar received the revelation of who The God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego is. Nebuchadnezzar looked into the burning fiery furnace which was burning seven times hotter than normal. He looked and saw Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego walking freely and unbound in the mist of the burning fiery furnace. He also saw to his amazement, a fourth man walking with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in the mist of the furious flames. The fourth man was always with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. He never left their side. His name is Jesus. He is the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego known to them as Yahweh. They would bow to no other even if it meant death. Because these three men were willing to suffer for Christ even unto death, Christ was revealed to a heathen king named Nebuchadnezzar. As a result Nebuchadnezzar issued a decree to his entire kingdom. His decree declared that anyone who spoke evil of Jesus, the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego would be cut in pieces and their homes would be demolished and made a dung hill.
This one incident of suffering for Christ released an Awakening throughout the Babylonian empire.
It’s our turn. Don’t run from the fire. Run to the fire and Christ will be made manifest to all who have been watching you for years. An Awakening will be released because you were willing to suffer for Christ’s sake. Amen and Amen!
Pastor Steve Ashford aka Lightning