The Bible Edge
Everyone needs an Edge, Believers can have a Bible Edge
But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were between a rock and a hard place. Or perhaps a rock and a hot place. On one side was their conviction to be obedient to the law of God. On the other side was the burning fiery furnace. The law of the land as given by Nebuchadnezzar was to bow down to the great statue (idol) when they heard the music. The law of God was clear. Ye shall make you no idols nor graven image, neither rear you up a standing image, neither shall ye set up any image of stone in your land, to bow down unto it: for I am the LORD your God. (Leviticus 26:1)
What would you do?
They chose to obey God’s clear command as found in the Scriptures (the law as given to Moses). They made this clear to Nebuchadnezzar saying; …we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. (Daniel 3:16-17)
They believed that their God could and would deliver them from this certain death. But if not… if He didn’t deliver them, they still would not bow. They would rather die being faithful.
There are many things about the Christian life that would benefit from this but if not philosophy. “I’m going to pray expecting God to answer my prayers, but if not, I’m still going to pray.” “I’m going to read my Bible expecting God to teach me something, help me somehow, or correct my “stinkin’ thinkin’” in some way, but if not, I’m still going to read my Bible.” “I’m going to faithfully attend the services of my church expecting to get something from God, but if not, I’m still going to attend all the services.” “I’m going to live by Biblical principle expecting God to lead, protect, and safeguard my life, but if not, I’m still going to live by Biblical principle.
Perhaps this was the same spirit that Job had when He said; Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him…” (Job 13:15). Also, perhaps, this is a different dimension from which to view Proverbs 3:5-6. Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
Regardless, these three little words speak volumes when put into life actions. They are an edge, a Bible Edge for how to act when between a rock and a hot place. It worked out for the three that were put into that furnace, for they came out unsinged and what a story they have to tell. Let’s ask them about it when we get there!
William T. Howe, Ph.D.