March 19, 2018: Preparing for the Fiery Trial

 

Isaiah 43:2 (NIV)
2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.

Daniel 3:16-18 (NIV)
16 Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to the king, “O 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 save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king. 18 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.”

Daniel 3:26-27 (NIV)
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.

How will you stand against the fiery trial which is coming upon the earth? So many are fearful of how they will survive the great test that is coming to our culture. They spend most of their time worrying about whether they will have the strength necessary to endure. Does the Word of God give us any direction as to how to prepare? The answer to that is a very strong affirmative.

We can learn from three young men who stood the test of the fire. What was it that gave them such confidence in the face of such a test? Where did they learn that God would deliver them from the fire before them? The answer lies clearly in front of us this morning, from the Word of God given to them in Isaiah the prophet.

Here is how it went down. When they were brought before the king and told they would either bow the knee to the idol or be tossed into the fire the Spirit of God quickened this word from Isaiah to remind them that God would be with them no matter what. He promised that when they went through the fire they would not be burned nor should the smell of smoke kindle upon them.

So, strengthened by the Word of God they were then able to face the test because they knew the Word and what it promised.

Do you not find it extremely interesting to note that the pagans almost quoted word for word Isaiah 43 when they brought out the Hebrew children from the fire?

There is one more thing I want you to notice in these texts. When the Hebrew children trusted the Word of God in the face of a great trial the result was that an entire nation was now able to hear the glory of God broadcast abroad by their own pagan king.

Perhaps God will call you to some test this week that will call for you to know His Word so that those around your life will see and hear the glory of God.

Reading the Word, preparing for the test to come,

Pastor Phil

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