Dedication and courage changes hearts
“For He is the living God, And steadfast forever; His kingdom is the one which shall not be destroyed, And His dominion shall endure to the end. He delivers and rescues, And He works signs and wonders In heaven and on earth”
The scripture above is a wonderful description of Almighty G-d. One would think that such a description was proclaimed by one of the Fathers of the Jewish faith - Abraham, Isaac or Jacob. Perhaps by Moses, by David, or by one of the prophets.
However, these words were not proclaimed by any of them.
These words were proclaimed by a pagan king.
Daniel 6:25-27: “Then King Darius wrote: To all peoples, nations, and languages that dwell in all the earth: Peace be multiplied to you. I make a decree that in every dominion of my kingdom men must tremble and fear before the God of Daniel. For He is the living God, And steadfast forever; His kingdom is the one which shall not be destroyed, And His dominion shall endure to the end. He delivers and rescues, And He works signs and wonders In heaven and on earth, Who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.”
The backdrop of this scripture is that it was decreed that anyone who would not bow before a royal statue of King Darius that was erected would be thrown into the lion’s den.
This decree was brought about by certain jealous governors and satraps who were looking for an excuse to have Daniel killed.
Daniel, knowing what fate awaited him, refused to bow to any other G-d except to the G-d of Israel. In fact, as soon as the decree was signed by King Darius, Daniel deliberately went and knelt before the G-d of Israel.
Because of this, Daniel was thrown into the lion’s den; yet G-d saved him from death or injury. This caused King Darius to come to faith in the one true G-d, the G-d of Israel.
Another account in the book of Daniel tells of three young Jewish men, Meshach, Shadrach and Abed-Nego. As with Daniel, Meshach, Shadrach and Abed-Nego also refused to bow down to a gold image but would only bow down to the G-d of Israel.
The result is that they were thrown into a fiery furnace.
We then read this astonishing account in Daniel 3:24-25: “Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished; and he rose in haste and spoke, saying to his counsellors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the midst of the fire?” They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.” “Look!” he answered, “I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.””
King Nebuchadnezzar then spoke these words: “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, who sent His Angel and delivered His servants who trusted in Him, and they have frustrated the king's word, and yielded their bodies, that they should not serve nor worship any god except their own God! Therefore I make a decree that any people, nation, or language which speaks anything amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made an ash heap; because there is no other God who can deliver like this.” (Daniel 3:28-29)
In Daniel 4:1-3, King Nebuchadnezzar goes on to say: “Nebuchadnezzar the king, To all peoples, nations, and languages that dwell in all the earth: Peace be multiplied to you. I thought it good to declare the signs and wonders that the Most High God has worked for me. How great are His signs, And how mighty His wonders! His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, And His dominion is from generation to generation.”
Like King Darius, not only did King Nebuchadnezzar come to faith in the one true G-d, the G-d of Israel, he also saw the ‘Fourth Man’ which many scholars say was a pre-incarnate of Christ.
Yet what notion could this idolatrous king have of Yeshua? Yet here is this pagan king who sees a pre-incarnate of Yeshua and comes to faith in G-d.
In the Book of Acts, we read the account of Paul and Silas in jail after having been beaten with rods for their faith in Yeshua.
We read in Acts 16:24-34: “Having received such a charge, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks. But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone's chains were loosed. And the keeper of the prison, awaking from sleep and seeing the prison doors open, supposing the prisoners had fled, drew his sword and was about to kill himself. But Paul called with a loud voice, saying, “Do yourself no harm, for we are all here.” Then he called for a light, ran in, and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. And he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.” Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all his family were baptized. Now when he had brought them into his house, he set food before them; and he rejoiced, having believed in God with all his household.”
Instead of bemoaning their fate and pain, Paul and Silas praised G-d.
G-d then supernaturally released them from prison, but instead of escaping, they stayed to fulfil their mission.
And through their incredible dedication and courage, an entire household came to salvation.
Dedication and courage for Almighty G-d will allow people to see G-d in you and through you. And like Daniel, like Meshach, Shadrach and Abed-Nego, like Paul and Silas who all went through terrible trials, as you face difficulties and trials, remain dedicated to G-d and courageous for Him, always worshipping Him.
And, as you do that, you will see how G-d will come through for you in supernatural ways that will cause even the most hardened atheist or persons of other religions to see the only true G-d – the G-d of Israel, in you.
And like King Darius, King Nebuchadnezzar and the jailer and his household, they too may come to salvation believing in the only true G-d, the G-d of Israel, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.