Sapphire Sky

September 10, 2016

Who is the Greatest?

Filed under: encouragement, theology — Tags: , — Steve Knaus @ 11:04 am

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The account of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego is one of the most well-known “Bible stories“. Generations of children have heard this account told to them in Sunday School, about the three young men who refused to the bow to the king’s image.

The narrative is simple and dramatic. King Nebuchadnezzar built a massive golden image and brought all of his officials to the ceremony so that they would bow down and worship. The penalty for not obeying the king was to be burned alive in a fiery furnace.

At the king’s command, the music played and everyone bowed down. Everyone worshipped the image except for three men who refused, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. These three were brought to the king where they were given an opportunity to recant, but they told the king that they will not bow down to his image.

Their refusal to bow threw the king into a rage. He ordered the furnace to be super-heated and then for the guards to throw Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego into the flame. The furnace was so hot that it killed the guards who took them.

After carrying out the sentence, the king looked into the fire and jumped up quickly. “Did we not throw three men into the fire?”, he asked. “Then why are there four men walking in the fire, and the fourth looks like one of the gods?”

Nebuchadnezzar called the three men out of the fire and they emerged from the flames unharmed. Their clothes did not even smell like smoke! The event concludes with the king blessing the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego and making a royal decree against anyone who dared to speak against this great God!

This event is a great encouragement to stand for your beliefs, even under intense pressure. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego opposed the king, even when they knew the consequences could be fatal.

But Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego did more than just stand up for their beliefs. They knew God’s law, and His first two commandments were to stay away from idols (Exodus 20:1-6). Their response to the king showed that they did not know what God would do. God may save them or He may let them burn to death. But regardless of the consequences, they would not dishonor God and would not worship the king’s image.

Don’t miss the statement of their belief, “our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire … But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.” (Daniel 3:17-18).

These men showed courage and were honored for their faith. But the main point of this passage goes beyond the three courageous young men on the plain of Dura. It goes beyond the selfish king who thought that he could unite his empire under the state religion. The main point of this passage is that the God of heaven, the God of these exiled Jews is greater than anything made by mankind. He is greater than the king or his empire.

Nebuchadnezzar thought he could challenge God when he said in his anger, “And who is the god who will deliver you out of my hands?”

At the end, Nebuchadnezzar saw that his power was worthless. God has power over the flames and over any nation. Nebuchadnezzar ended the scene with blessing to this God.

He is the Most High God! (Daniel 3:26)

 

Remember!

  • God is able to rescue us from our troubles, but can we have the faith of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego to commit to Him regardless of the consequences?
  • God is greater than any king, any power or any nation. In our modern American society, He is greater than any leaders, politicians, or laws in our land!
  • The entire message of Daniel is a reminder that God had not forgotten His people. God has not forgotten us!

 

Previous post: His Kingdom is Forever!


Daniel 3

King Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold, whose height was sixty cubits and its breadth six cubits. He set it up on the plain of Dura, in the province of Babylon. Then King Nebuchadnezzar sent to gather the satraps, the prefects, and the governors, the counselors, the treasurers, the justices, the magistrates, and all the officials of the provinces to come to the dedication of the image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up. Then the satraps, the prefects, and the governors, the counselors, the treasurers, the justices, the magistrates, and all the officials of the provinces gathered for the dedication of the image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up. And they stood before the image that Nebuchadnezzar had set up. And the herald proclaimed aloud, “You are commanded, O peoples, nations, and languages, that when you hear the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, you are to fall down and worship the golden image that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up. And whoever does not fall down and worship shall immediately be cast into a burning fiery furnace.” Therefore, as soon as all the peoples heard the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, all the peoples, nations, and languages fell down and worshiped the golden image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up. 

Therefore at that time certain Chaldeans came forward and maliciously accused the Jews. They declared to King Nebuchadnezzar, “O king, live forever! You, O king, have made a decree, that every man who hears the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, shall fall down and worship the golden image. And whoever does not fall down and worship shall be cast into a burning fiery furnace. There are certain Jews whom you have appointed over the affairs of the province of Babylon: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. These men, O king, pay no attention to you; they do not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”

Then Nebuchadnezzar in furious rage commanded that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego be brought. So they brought these men before the king. Nebuchadnezzar answered and said to them, “Is it true, O Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the golden image that I have set up? Now if you are ready when you hear the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, to fall down and worship the image that I have made, well and good. But if you do not worship, you shall immediately be cast into a burning fiery furnace. And who is the god who will deliver you out of my hands?”

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. If this be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”

Then Nebuchadnezzar was filled with fury, and the expression of his face was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. He ordered the furnace heated seven times more than it was usually heated. And he ordered some of the mighty men of his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace. Then these men were bound in their cloaks, their tunics, their hats, and their other garments, and they were thrown into the burning fiery furnace. Because the king’s order was urgent and the furnace overheated, the flame of the fire killed those men who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, fell bound into the burning fiery furnace.

Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished and rose up in haste. He declared to his counselors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the fire?” They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.” He answered and said, “But I see four men unbound, walking in the midst of the fire, and they are not hurt; and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods.”

Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the door of the burning fiery furnace; he declared, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here!” Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego came out from the fire. And the satraps, the prefects, the governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together and saw that the fire had not had any power over the bodies of those men. The hair of their heads was not singed, their cloaks were not harmed, and no smell of fire had come upon them. Nebuchadnezzar answered and said, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who has sent his angel and delivered his servants, who trusted in him, and set aside the king’s command, and yielded up their bodies rather than serve and worship any god except their own God. Therefore I make a decree: Any people, nation, or language that speaks anything against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego shall be torn limb from limb, and their houses laid in ruins, for there is no other god who is able to rescue in this way.” Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the province of Babylon.


 

Daniel 3:1
King Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold, whose height was sixty cubits and its breadth six cubits. He set it up on the plain of Dura, in the province of Babylon.

Nebuchadnezzar built a massive image of gold in the plain of Dura, about six miles from city of Babylon. Many commentators believe that Nebuchadnezzar was inspired by his dream in chapter 2. Babylon was the “head of gold” in the vision of the nations (Daniel 2:38), so he therefore built an image to reflect the glory of Babylon.

“The king could appreciate the wisdom of Daniel, but he had no heart for the God who had inspired His servant.” – H.A. Ironside [3]

 

Daniel 3:2-3a
Then King Nebuchadnezzar sent to gather the satraps, the prefects, and the governors, the counselors, the treasurers, the justices, the magistrates, and all the officials of the provinces to come to the dedication of the image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up. Then the satraps, the prefects, and the governors, the counselors, the treasurers, the justices, the magistrates, and all the officials of the provinces gathered for the dedication of the image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up.

All of the provincial leaders were required to attend the dedication of Nebuchadnezzar’s image. The list of leaders included the following [6] [7]:

  • Satraps – leaders over regions
  • Prefects – military leaders
  • Governors – leaders of smaller provinces
  • Counselors – legal advisors to the leaders
  • Treasurers – financial leaders in the government
  • Justices – The local judges
  • Magistrates – the lower government officials
  • Officials of the provinces – other civil leaders

The image was the state religion that was being imposed on the local leaders. The people were never required to abandon their gods or leave their own worship, but they were required to add the state religion to their worship, and to include the king’s image among their gods [7].

 

Daniel 3:3b-7
And they stood before the image that Nebuchadnezzar had set up. And the herald proclaimed aloud, “You are commanded, O peoples, nations, and languages, that when you hear the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, you are to fall down and worship the golden image that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up. And whoever does not fall down and worship shall immediately be cast into a burning fiery furnace.” Therefore, as soon as all the peoples heard the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, all the peoples, nations, and languages fell down and worshiped the golden image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up.

The herald proclaimed the instructions. When they heard the music playing, they were to bow down and worship the king’s image. Anyone who failed to worship the image would be thrown into the furnace.

This was probably not an exhaustive list of instruments present at the time, but the list included the following [5] [8]:

  • Horn – a horn or trumpet
  • Flute – flute or whistle
  • Zither – zither or lyre
  • Trigon – triangular lyre
  • Harp – psaltery or harp
  • Bagpipe – bagpipe or pan pipe

“The difference between the true believer and the unbeliever isn’t the presence of faith, because everybody lives by faith in something. The difference is in the object of that faith. The crowd believed the herald and the king, and therefore they obeyed. The three Hebrew men believed the commandment of God, so they disobeyed.” – Wiersbe [4]

 

Daniel 3:8-12
Therefore at that time certain Chaldeans came forward and maliciously accused the Jews. They declared to King Nebuchadnezzar, “O king, live forever! You, O king, have made a decree, that every man who hears the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, shall fall down and worship the golden image. And whoever does not fall down and worship shall be cast into a burning fiery furnace. There are certain Jews whom you have appointed over the affairs of the province of Babylon: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. These men, O king, pay no attention to you; they do not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”

The music played and the entire crowd fell down on the ground in worship to the image. However, a group of Nebuchadnezzar’s servants came back to him with a report: there were three men who were not obeying the king’s order.

The original language of this passage indicates that this was a malicious attack. The Chaldeans were not simply reporting a crime against the king, they were looking for a way to destroy the Jews. The designation of these three as “certain Jews”, may have have also been an attempt to demean them for their nationality. The king had appointed Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego over the affairs of Babylon (Daniel 2:49) and it appears that these Chaldeans were reacting out of jealousy.

See the separate discussion about Daniel absence this event.

The furnace was likely a smelting furnace which was built on the site. It may have served in the construction of the golden image, but now it would serve as a visual deterrent for any who dared to disobey the king! Note the redundancy of the description. All through this passage, it is described as the “burning fiery furnace”. This redundant description emphasized how hot the punishment would be!

“Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are Mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you” (Isaiah 43:1–2).

 

Daniel 3:13-15
Then Nebuchadnezzar in furious rage commanded that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego be brought. So they brought these men before the king. Nebuchadnezzar answered and said to them, “Is it true, O Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the golden image that I have set up? Now if you are ready when you hear the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, to fall down and worship the image that I have made, well and good. But if you do not worship, you shall immediately be cast into a burning fiery furnace. And who is the god who will deliver you out of my hands?”

In fury, the king called for Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego and demanded that they bow to the golden image. He gave them another chance to obey and threatened instant death if they would not obey.

Nebuchadnezzar believed that he was the supreme ruler over all the earth. He challenged the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, saying, “And who is the god that will deliver you out of my hands?”

“Faith rests on commands and promises, not on arguments and explanations.” – Wiersbe [4]

 

Daniel 3:16-18
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter. If this be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered the king with courage. “We have no need to answer you”, meaning that they did not need to explain themselves or to defend themselves before God. They were committed to not break the law of God and they would not bow down to the idol (Exodus 20:3-5).

The statement that follows is one of the greatest expressions of faith in Scripture. “We know that our God can deliver us. But if not, we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image.” They were confident that God could save them if He so wanted. But even if God would not save them, they would not bow!

They would trust God, even if He did not save them!

Though the fig tree should not blossom,
nor fruit be on the vines,
the produce of the olive fail
and the fields yield no food,
the flock be cut off from the fold
and there be no herd in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord;
I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
God, the Lord, is my strength;
he makes my feet like the deer’s;
he makes me tread on my high places.
(Habakkuk 3:17-19)

 

Daniel 3:19-23
Then Nebuchadnezzar was filled with fury, and the expression of his face was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. He ordered the furnace heated seven times more than it was usually heated. And he ordered some of the mighty men of his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace. Then these men were bound in their cloaks, their tunics, their hats, and their other garments, and they were thrown into the burning fiery furnace. Because the king’s order was urgent and the furnace overheated, the flame of the fire killed those men who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, fell bound into the burning fiery furnace.

In absolute rage, the king ordered the fire to be heated seven times hotter than usual! [10] The guards then bound Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego with all of their clothing and accessories, and threw them into the furnace. The furnace was so hot that it killed the guards who threw them in!

The men were thrown from the elevated entrance into the furnace itself.

 

Daniel 3:24-25
Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished and rose up in haste. He declared to his counselors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the fire?” They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.” He answered and said, “But I see four men unbound, walking in the midst of the fire, and they are not hurt; and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods.”

The three men were thrown into the fire as the king commanded. But the king then looked in and saw not three men, but four men in the flame. The four of them were walking in the fire unharmed.

The Babylonian legends were full of stories about their gods and demigods. Nebuchadnezzar saw a distinct person in the fire and believed that it must be a demigod. The stranger in the fire was most likely Jesus Christ himself, in one of His appearances before He came to earth, although the stranger in the fire could also have been an angel sent by God (see the separate discussion about the fourth man in the fire).

“God did not eliminate the fire. He just joined them in it.” – Stephen Davey [7]

“God did not save them from the fire. He saved them in the fire.” – John MacArthur [11]

 

Daniel 3:26-27
Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the door of the burning fiery furnace; he declared, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here!” Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego came out from the fire. And the satraps, the prefects, the governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together and saw that the fire had not had any power over the bodies of those men. The hair of their heads was not singed, their cloaks were not harmed, and no smell of fire had come upon them.

Nebuchadnezzar called for the three men to come out of the fire. Note his declaration, “servants of the Most High God”. Nebuchadnezzar had come a long way from his earlier statement where he challenged the three of them saying, “And who is the god who will deliver you out of my hands?”

The three men emerged from the furnace without any evidence of the fire. They were not burned, the clothes were not affected, and they did not even smell like the fire!

The only thing that was burned in the fire was the ropes that bound them [7].

 

Daniel 3:28-30
Nebuchadnezzar answered and said, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who has sent his angel and delivered his servants, who trusted in him, and set aside the king’s command, and yielded up their bodies rather than serve and worship any god except their own God. Therefore I make a decree: Any people, nation, or language that speaks anything against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego shall be torn limb from limb, and their houses laid in ruins, for there is no other god who is able to rescue in this way.” Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the province of Babylon.

Nebuchadnezzar blessed the god of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.  He showed respect for the men who were so dedicated to their God that they would rather sacrifice their lives than worship an Idol. But the majority of the king’s praise was to the God who had delivered his servants.

The king created a royal edict, announcing death and dishonor for anyone who spoke against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. This edict would be copied and read throughout all of the empire. There is no other god who is able to rescue like this!

It is important to note that Nebuchadnezzar is once again impressed by the God of heaven but he is not converted. This was Daniel’s god in the Chapter 2, and He is also the god of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. But it will take more time before He becomes Nebuchadnezzar’s God.

“The book of Daniel is a great source of encouragement, because it reminds us that God cares for His people and honors them when they are true to Him. ‘Them that honor me I will honor’ (1 Samuel 2:30).” – Wiersbe [4]

 


Common Questions

I compiled a list of the most common questions that arise from this passage. The scripture account is not clear on many of these points and we can only make educated guesses about the answers to many of these questions. I have not attempted to answer all of these questions, but instead I have listed the best possible answers according to credible commentators.

 

Where was Daniel?

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were required to attend the king’s dedication, but we have no record of Daniel’s presence nor of his actions during this time. Some have suggested that Daniel compromised and bowed to the image, but this is contrary to Daniel’s character (Daniel 1:8). Credible commentators have suggested the following possibilities to explain Daniel’s absence [5]:

  • He may have been absent on government business
  • As part of the king’s advisors, he may have been separated from the others, either working in a separate location or on the podium with the king
  • He may have been ill (e.g. Daniel 8:27)
  • Daniel’s office was not among those listed in this chapter so he may have not been required to come
  • The king may have intentionally excluded Daniel from the dedication, knowing that his top advisor would have objected to this action [9].

 

Why did Nebuchadnezzar build the image?

The image fed the king’s own pride but it may also have been for political power. It would be very politically astute for the king to unify his new empire under a common religion. It is likely that the image represented the king’s patron god, Nabu. Bowing to Nabu (Nebo) would be akin to pledging allegiance to his king and the god’s name sake, Nebuchadnezzar [5].

Nebuchadnezzar may have also been inspired by his dream of the world kingdoms (Daniel 2) where he was the “head of gold”. Therefore, the golden image may have reflected the power and greatness of Babylon.

 

When did Nebuchadnezzar build the image?

We know that the events of Daniel 3 happened between 602 B.C. and 570 B.C. [1], but we do not have an exact date within that 32-year span for the events in this chapter. Most Bible scholars expect that these events occurred at one of two possible times during Nebuchadnezzar’s reign:

  • One possibility is that the image of Daniel 3 happened shortly after Nebuchadnezzar’s dream in Daniel 2, or about 602-601 B.C. This was early in Nebuchadnezzar’s reign and he would have needed to unite his new empire.

    This option makes the most sense if Nebuchadnezzar was inspired by his dream to build the golden image.

  • Another possibility is that the image of Daniel 3 happened shortly after destroying Jerusalem and removing Judah and the surrounding nations, or about 586-585 B.C. This was much later in Nebuchadnezzar’s reign, but had a new need to unite his diverse empire with the new captives. Nebuchadnezzar may have also been emboldened in his idol worship after destroying the temple in Jerusalem in 586 B.C.

    One of the best arguments for this option is Nebuchadnezzar’s edict at the end of Daniel 3. How could the same king who decreed death to anyone who spoke against the God of the Jews then commit the same atrocities in Jerusalem, killing the priests and destroying the temple? (See Lamentations). Therefore, this option suggests that Nebuchadnezzar’s change of heart must have occurred after he destroyed Jerusalem.

 

What did the image look like?

All we know from the text is that the golden image was 60 cubits high and 60 cubits wide. If we use the standard measurement 1 cubit = 18 inches, then the image was 90 feet tall x 9 feet wide. Note that the size of the cubit could have been much larger (see here).

Those proportions would be unusually thin for a human figure (for example, a 6-foot tall man with those proportions would just over 7 inches wide), so the image was likely on a tall pedestal. Archeologists have also unearthed a huge foundation on the plain outside of Babylon.

Another possibility is that the tall and thin image was not a human figure but an obelisk. We have no information on what the image looked like so all guesses are pure speculation. We know that the image of Daniel 2 was a human form so the best assumption is that the image in Daniel 3 is likewise human in form.

The image was probably made out of wood and then overlaid with gold. There was not enough gold in the kingdom to make a solid gold statue of this size [4]. The cost of a solid gold statue of this magnitude would have exceeded even Nebuchadnezzar’s great wealth. See also Isaiah 40:19, Isaiah 41:7, and Jeremiah 10:3-9 for examples.

 

What was the fiery furnace?

The furnace was likely a smelting furnace that was set up on the plain of Dura. It may have been used to produce the gold while the image was being constructed.

The smelting furnace was probably shaped like “an old-fashioned glass milk bottle” [5]. There would be smaller holes near the bottom for adding wood and inserting bellows (to increase temperature). A large door sat above the fire bed for adding and removing the ore, hence why the prisoners “fell down” into the fire. [5] We know that the furnace was large enough for at least four men to walk inside it.

 

Who was the fourth person in the fire?

The King James Version translated Nebuchadnezzar’s statement as, “the form of the fourth is like the Son of God”.  This gave rise to the widespread belief that Nebuchadnezzar recognized Jesus Christ himself in the fire and realized that he was the son of God. Nebuchadnezzar was a pagan ruler who lived before Jesus Christ came to earth, and he would not have known that Jesus was the Son of God. The statement is more accurately translated as, “the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods!”. The king looked into the fire and saw a form that looked like a demigod.

However, the fourth person in the fire was most likely Jesus Christ himself. This is known in Old Testament times as a theophany, where Jesus appeared to an Old Testament saint (e.g. Abraham in Genesis 18, Jacob/Israel in Genesis 32). The fourth person could also have been an angel sent from God to protect the men in the fire.


 

[1] Assuming that the events of Daniel 1-4 follow in chronological order, we know that Daniel 2 occurred in the second year of Nebuchadnezzar, or 602 B.C. (see Daniel 2:1 and the details here). The events of Daniel 4 cover 8 years, therefore they must have occurred at least 8 years before Nebuchadnezzar’s death in 562 B.C. Therefore, we only know that the events of Daniel 3 must have occurred between 602 and 570 B.C.

[3] H.A. Ironside, Lecture 3, THE ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION IN TYPE, Daniel 3

[4] Warren W. Wiersbe, The Wiersbe Bible Commentary, Daniel 3, pages 1352-1356

[5] Frank E. Gaebelein, Editor, The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Volume 7 (Zondervan, 1985), Daniel 3, pages 50-58

[6] John MacArthur, The MacArthur Study Bible, Daniel 3

[7] Stephen Davey, “But, if not . . .”, Daniel 3, 11/25/2012

[8] Critics of the Book of Daniel show that there were Greek names among the musical instruments mentioned in Daniel 3. Therefore, these critics conclude that Daniel must have been written at a later date, under the rule of the Greek empire. However, the presence of musical instruments with Greek names does not require the people to be under Greek rule. It is very plausible for Greek merchants to have travelled through Babylon and to have introduced Greek culture to the Babylonians, including Greek instruments [5]. See here for more information about the time of Daniel.

[9] Doug Bookman, The Man Daniel, Daniel and the Glory of God, Daniel 2-4

[10] The term “seven times more” is likely not a gauge of the temperature of the furnace, but is rather a term of extreme measures. The king, in his rage, ordered the furnace to be super-heated.

[11] John MacArthur, Uncompromising Faith in the Fiery Furnace, Part 2, Daniel 3:4-30

 

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2 Comments »

  1. […] Previous post: Who is the Greatest? […]

    Pingback by How Big Do You Think You Are? | Sapphire Sky — September 25, 2016 @ 6:38 pm

  2. […] a middle-aged man to encourage his friends to bow only to God, regardless of the consequences (see here). Daniel had the kindness as an older man to counsel the king to turn from his pride (see here). […]

    Pingback by Politics and Bad Coworkers | Sapphire Sky — October 28, 2016 @ 10:06 pm


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