605BC-562BC – Fiery test in the Fiery Furnace

Daniel 3:13-30. In 605BC, not only Daniel, but also three of his friends, were captured by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon.

Daniel’s friends, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah (their Hebrew names) were given Babylonian names – Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.

Later in their lives they were challenged by a test of their allegiance – would they obey God or would they obey King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon.

Read the Bible reading below to find out what happened to them.

What happened to get King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon so excited?

What did King Nebuchadnezzar command to happen?

Background Reading:

The Threat of the Fire Furnace

3:13 Nebuchadnezzar flew into a rage and furiously ordered that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego be brought before him. 14 Nebuchadnezzar asked them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, that you don’t worship my gods and that you don’t worship the golden statue that has been set up? 15 Now, if you are ready at this very moment to obey ‘the sound of the trumpet, the flute, the lyre, the four-stringed lyre, and the harp,’ and worship the image that I have made… If you do not so worship, you will immediately have cast yourselves into the middle of the blazing fire, and what god is there who can deliver you from my power?”

Daniel’s Friends Answer King Nebuchadnezzar

16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered King Nebuchadnezzar, “It’s not necessary for us to respond in this matter. 17 Your majesty, if it be his will, our God whom we serve can deliver us from the blazing fire furnace, and he will deliver us from you. 18 But if not, rest assured, your majesty, that we won’t serve your gods, and we won’t worship the golden statue that you have set up.”

The King Orders an Execution

19 Out of control with rage, Nebuchadnezzar’s facial expression changed toward Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and he ordered that the furnace be heated seven times hotter than usual. 20 Then he issued orders to his elite guard to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego with ropes and throw them into the blazing fire furnace. 21 So the elite guard tied them up fully clothed, still wearing their robes, tunics, and turbans, and threw them into the blazing fire furnace, 22 because the king’s command was so drastic. Since the furnace was blazing hot, its flames killed those who threw Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego into the blazing fire. 23 Bound firmly with ropes, these three men Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego fell into the blazing fire furnace.

The Fourth Man in the Furnace

24 Astonished, King Nebuchadnezzar stood up in terror, and asked his advisers, “Didn’t we throw three men into the fire, bound firmly with ropes?”

In reply they told the king, “Yes, your majesty.”

25 “Look!” he told them, “I see four men walking untied and unharmed in the middle of the fire, and the appearance of the fourth resembles a divine being.”

26 Then Nebuchadnezzar approached the opening of the blazing fire furnace. He shouted out, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, servants of the Most High God, come out and come here!” So Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego came out of the fire. 27 The regional authorities, viceroys, governors, and royal advisors gazed at those men and saw that the fire had no effect on their bodies—not a hair on their head was singed, their clothes were not burned, and they did not smell of fire.

28 Nebuchadnezzar spoke up and announced:

“Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego! He sent his angel to deliver his servants who trusted in him. They disobeyed the king’s command and were willing to risk their lives in order not to serve or worship any god except their own God. 29 So I decree that people from any nation or language who say anything against the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego will be destroyed and their house reduced to rubble, because there is no other god who can save like this.”

30 Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego within the province of Babylon.
Daniel 3:13-30

More Information:

In the reign of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon 605BC-562BC. Three friends of Daniel captured about the same time as Daniel in 605BC.

Other slides in this module: