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Free Men Whose Backs Won’t Bend In The Lion’s Den

18 October, 2009

How is faith lived out?
What does it mean to have faith in a God who will deliver you from the lion’s den, when you are thrown in at the hands of your enemies?
Daniel had faith, and he went, full of confidence, into that den of lions.

What is the full story?

Daniel & his three friends Hananiah, Mischael, and Azariah were Jewish guys that had been in Babylonian captivity for quite a few years.  King Nebuchadnezzar picked them out with a crowd of other guys (both Babylonian and Jewish) to study at the King’s palace.  Daniel (King Neb called him Belteshazzar) had already proved himself to be a servant of the Most High God.  He told the King a dream that he had.
The King had the dream.
Daniel told it to him.
And interpreted it.
Not just interpreted the dream after the King told him what it was, but both told the King his own dream, and interpreted it.
Accurately.
Because it brought glory to the LORD.
His buddies, Hananiah (Shadrach), Mishael (Mishach), and Azariah (Abednego) had faith too.  In the Most High God.
Actually they refused to bow their knee to anything created in the image of creation instead of the Creator.
Their faith became works, if you will.  Their faith in the Almighty God of their fathers caused them to refuse, outwardly, to worship a false God.
In the face of persecution.
In the door of a burning fiery furnace.
In the face of death.
They had faith that their God could deliver them from that furnace if He so desired.  And even if He decided not to deliver, they had faith in an eternity with Him.

And as it turns out, He delivered them.  And showed them His Son in the process.  The Messiah that they had faith would come to atone for their sins once and for all.
And it glorified the LORD.

King Neb praised the God of Shadrach, Mishach, and Abednego.  He praised the God who called them Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, because they were His children.

So that guy Daniel, the one that King Neb called Belteshazzar, was still around when King Belshazzar came to power and then King Darius after him.  And Daniel gained favor before King Darius in the same way he gained favor before the King Neb, by showing them the power of God. The One he put his faith in.

But where there is favor, even if the favor is gained by righteous means, there is always dirty jealousy from the ones that desire unrighteous favor.  So some dirty dudes convinced King Darius to write a law saying that any knee, bowed to anyone but him, would be thrown in the lion’s den.
Daniel knew when this law was passed.
Daniel, full of faith, bowed his knee to the Most High God that very night, instead of King Darius.
He had “faith” in that God.  But that faith was just a word, until he bowed.  Then it became a reality.
In the face of persecution.
In the mouth of the lion’s den.
In the face of death.
He had faith that devotion to the Most High God would result in deliverance from death, life, angels, principalities, powers, things present, things to come, height, depth, or any other created thing.
Especially lions.
And he emerged from that lion’s den the next morning without a scratch.
And it glorified the LORD.

So Daniels faith, it was acts; it was deeds.  And faith without deeds is dead.  And dead faith would cause a man’s back to bend in the lion’s den.  Dead faith would die in the mouth of the lions.

Faith in the atoning power of Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection causes acts.  It caused the Acts of the Apostles.  Acts of following Jesus, as Lord.
Both His acts
And His commands.
Without acts, the “faith” is dead.
Without acts, it really isn’t faith at all.
It is just “Christianity”

What about your faith?  Does it cause acts?
Or is it just “Christianity”, with no faith in Christ?

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Ricky Rondo permalink
    20 October, 2009 08:57

    That’s a pretty awesome, Biblical example of how faith and works interact. Really glad you posted

  2. John M permalink
    20 October, 2009 14:48

    we working on some storying?

  3. mom permalink
    20 October, 2009 20:52

    This goes right along with the David Platt podcast I listened to today. I am listening to his Faith series. Thank-you for taking the time to write this…God is glorified.

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