Lesson 10 – Day by Day Bible Study Guide 2 by Pastor Ed Lapiz
- Moments come for believers to draw battle lines and make a clear, irrevocable stand for God.
- These are opportunities to glorify God and witness for our faith.
Daniel 3:1-7 New International Version (NIV)
The Image of Gold and the Blazing Furnace
3 King Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold, sixty cubits high and six cubits wide,[a] and set it up on the plain of Dura in the province of Babylon. 2 He 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. 3 So 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.
4 Then the herald loudly proclaimed, “Nations and peoples of every language, this is what you are commanded to do: 5 As 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. 6 Whoever does not fall down and worship will immediately be thrown into a blazing furnace.”
7 Therefore, 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.
- Describe the project Nebuchadnezzar embarked on.
- (He made an image of gold.
- In his previous dream, Nebuchadnezzar dreamt of an image, but only the head was gold.
- Why did Nebuchadnezzar make the whole statue golden? [To defy the prophecy that Babylon and his reign had an end.]
- It was dedicated.
- It was decreed that everyone would bow down and worship when the music played.)
- (He made an image of gold.
- What was the punishment for not bowing?
- (Burning in the fiery furnace)
- Note: Furnace for baking bricks were numerous as Babylon was busy on many construction projects.
- How did everyone react to the decree?
- (They obeyed)
- Why? (DISCUSS)
Daniel 3:8-12 New International Version (NIV)
8 At this time some astrologers[a] came forward and denounced the Jews. 9 They said to King Nebuchadnezzar, “May the king live forever! 10 Your 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, 11 and that whoever does not fall down and worship will be thrown into a blazing furnace. 12 But 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.”
6. How did the situation create a big problem for Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego?(Some astrologers informed Nebuchadnezzar that they did not bow to the statue.)
7. Why did the three men refuse to bow to the image?
(Doing so would be idolatrous!)
8. Why would the astrologers be eager to tell on them?
- (To win the king’s favor.
- They were jealous and envious of the three men.)
- How did they approach Nebuchadnezzar?
- (“O king live forever!” They were patronizing.
- They reminded him of his decree and encouraged him to impose it.
- They touched his ego).
- How did they approach Nebuchadnezzar?
Daniel 3:13-15 New International Version (NIV)
13 Furious with rage, Nebuchadnezzar summoned Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. So these men were brought before the king, 14 and 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? 15 Now 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?”
7. How did Nebudchadnezzae react?
- (a. He was furious at first.
- Then he was concilliatory.
He finally imposed on the three men.)
What was his boast? (v15 “What god will be able to rescue you from my hand?”)
Daniel 3:16-18 New International Version (NIV)
16 Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to him, “King Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. 17 If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us[a] from Your Majesty’s hand. 18 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.”
8. How did the three men respond to the command/threat?
(They defied the command.)
- They were able to do this?
- (They believed that God would save them from the fire and Nebuchadnezzar’s hand.)
- Comment on v18 “But even if he does not, we want you to know, O King, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set-up.”
- (They have faith even unto death!)
Daniel 3:19-23 New International Version (NIV)
19 Then Nebuchadnezzar was furious with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, and his attitude toward them changed. He ordered the furnace heated seven times hotter than usual 20 and commanded some of the strongest soldiers in his army to tie up Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego and throw them into the blazing furnace. 21 So these men, wearing their robes, trousers, turbans and other clothes, were bound and thrown into the blazing furnace. 22 The 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 and Abednego, 23 and these three men, firmly tied, fell into the blazing furnace.
9. How did Nebuchadnezzar react to their defiance?
- (He was furious.
- He ordered them burned. The oven was made seven times hotter!)
10. What happened to the soldiers who bound and took them to the furnace? (They died because of the intense heat!).
Daniel 3:24-27 New International Version (NIV)
24 Then 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.”
25 He said, “Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.”
26 Nebuchadnezzar 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, 27 and 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.
11. What amazing thing happened?
- (Nebuchadnezzar saw four, not three, men un the furnace walking about.)
- One looked superhuman/divine.
- Nobody was burned/hurt!)
12. What did Nebuchadnezzar do?
- (He called the three men.)
- How did he refer to them? (servants of the Most High God)
- Why the change of heart? (DISCUSS)
13. What was the men’s condition?
- Not even smelled of fire)
Daniel 3:28-30 New International Version (NIV)
28 Then 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. 29 Therefore 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.”
30 Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in the province of Babylon.
14. What were Nebuchadnezzar’s pronouncement about God?
- (Praise Him.
- “He send his angel and rescued his servants.”
- No other god could save this way.)
15. What were his pronoucement about the men?
- trusted God.
- defied the king’s direct command
- were willing to die for their God.)’
16. What decrees did he make?
- (Anyone who speaks against God would be cut to pieces and dispossed.)
- He promoted the three.
1. What were Nebudchadnezzar’s mistakes?
- (To make a golden image of Babylon and require everyone to worship it.
- They listen to the astrologers.
- To be overtaken by pride, not reason.
- To defy the God of Israel.)
2. What did he do right?
- (He immediately sensed an extraordinary event. ie The three did not burn. There was someone else in the furnace.
- He acknowldged his mistake.)
3. What did the three men do right?
- (Stand up for God. Not only for “better” but also for “worse.” (EXPLAIN)
- To stick with God even with the possibility of death!. Not to force God to act according to human expectations.)
- Note: What could have emboldened them to act like this? (Remembering who they were; that they were God’s people. Not eating the King’s food, not drinking the king’s wine and not bowing to idols.)
4. What did we learn about God?
- (He saves.
- When he lets his people go to the furnace, he goes with them!)
5. What does standing up for God accomplish?
- (God is glorified.
- God is given the free hand to move.
- Believers experience God’s protection and deliverance.
- Unbelievers are given lessons about God and the chance to also know the truth.)
- Note: It is right and commendable to stand up for Jesus whether or not it ends in favorable circumstances.