Shadrach (Hananiah), Meshach (Mishael), and Abednego (Azariah), have always been a great inspiration to me. We meet them in the first chapter of Daniel. They were taken captive with Daniel (Belteshazzar) by Nebuchadnezzar and were among the captives to be trained in the literature and language of the Chaldeans (Daniel 1). They also ate the diet of vegetables and water as Daniel did. The four of them entered into the royal service of the king. The king “found none equal to Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah” (Daniel 1:19).
One day they faced a trial. Even though by now they were administrators over the province of Babylon, (Daniel 2:49), they made the decision not to bow down to the gods of Babylon or the gold statue Nebuchadnezzar had made. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego knew they faced death by fire for refusing.
Their response to Nebuchadnezzar's threat to throw them in the fire if they refused to bow down has run through my mind as I have faced various trials in my life. It reminds me even when I am facing something I really do not want to go through, God has the power to save me. But I must be willing to go through the trial even if God does not rescue me in the way I hope He will. I must learn to stand strong and serve my God despite what I might suffer.
So when you face personal trials or persecution, whatever your trial of fire may be, do not be fearful. Stand strong no matter what the outcome, because your Lord is standing in the fire with you. Remember the response of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego as they faced their trial of fire.
Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king. 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.”