Daniel 3:15 Index
"'Now if ye be ready that at what time ye hear the sound of the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, and dulcimer, and all kinds of musick, ye fall down and worship the image which I have made; well: but if ye worship not, ye shall be cast the same hour into the midst of a burning fiery furnace; and who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands?'"
Research Material

"Now if ye be ready..."

  • Can it be true, O Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, after all that has been done for you, that ye do not serve my gods nor worship the image which I have set up? The reason for making the image was doubtless explained, and another opportunity offered them in which they might redeem the past offense. But if it was wilful disregard of authority, the law of the land should be enforced. The furnace was pointed to by the king as awaiting traitors and rebels. (SNH 47)
  • The forbearance of the king is shown in his granting Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego another trial after their first failure to comply with his requirements. Doubtless the matter was thoroughly understood. They could not plead ignorance. They knew what the king wanted, and their failure to fulfill his command was an intentional and deliberate refusal to obey him. With most kings this would have been enough to seal their fate. But no, said Nebuchadnezzar, I will overlook this offense if upon a second trial they comply with the law. But they informed the king that he need not trouble himself to repeat the test. (US 73)

"...ye shall be cast... into the... fiery furnace..."

  • The king commanded that the men be brought before him. “Is it true,” he inquired, “do not ye serve my gods, nor worship the golden image which I have set up?” He endeavored by threats to induce them to unite with the multitude. Pointing to the fiery furnace, he reminded them of the punishment awaiting them if they should persist in their refusal to obey his will. But firmly the Hebrews testified to their allegiance to the God of heaven, and their faith in His power to deliver. The act of bowing to the image was understood by all to be an act of worship. Such homage they could render to God alone.... As the three Hebrews stood before the king, he was convinced that they possessed something the other wise men of his kingdom did not have. They had been faithful in the performance of every duty. He would give them another trial. If only they would signify their willingness to unite with the multitude in worshiping the image, all would be well with them; “but if ye worship not,” he added, “ye shall be cast the same hour into the midst of a burning fiery furnace.” Then with his hand stretched upward in defiance, he demanded, “Who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands?” (PK 507)

  • The appointed day has come, and the vast company is assembled, when word is brought to the king that the three Hebrews whom he has set over the province of Babylon have refused to worship the image. These are Daniel's three companions, who had been called by the king, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. Full of rage, the monarch calls them before him, and pointing to the angry furnace, tells them the punishment that will be theirs if they refuse obedience to his will. (SL 37)
  • The three Hebrews were called upon to confess Christ in the face of the burning fiery furnace. It cost them something to do this, for their lives were at stake. These youth, imbued with the Holy Spirit, declared to the whole kingdom of Babylon their faith, — that He whom they worshiped was the only true and living God. The demonstration of their faith on the plain of Dura was a most eloquent presentation of their principles. (The Youth's Instructor article "The Life of Daniel -- The Sabbath Test" July 12, 1904)

"...who is that God that shall deliver you..."

  • This need not be considered direct blasphemy against the God of the Jews. Nevertheless it was a challenge addressed to Jehovah in a presumptuous spirit and with a haughty sense of superior power. Some have compared these words with those spoken by the Assyrian king Sennacherib, "let not they God, in whom thou trustest, deceive thee" (Isaiah 37:10). But Nebuchadnezzar's case was somewhat different. Sennacherib elevated his gods above Jehovah, the God of the Jews, but Nebuchadnezzar declared only that deliverance out of the fiery furnace was a work that no god cold accomplish. In this acknowledgment he did no more than indirectly liken the God of the Jews to his own gods, with whose impotence in such matters he was sufficiently acquainted. (4BC 783)
  • What a test of the fidelity of these three companions of Daniel! They realized that they were in the presence of not only the richest monarch of earth, and that disobedience meant death, and before the assembled multitudes on the plain of Dura, but they were a spectacle to God, to angels, and to the inhabitants of other worlds. The controversy was not between man and Satan, but between Christ and Satan, and eternal principles were at stake. Men were actors in the contest. They could stand as witnesses either for Christ or for Satan in this time of decision. Would they allow an unsanctified emotion to have possession of their lives, and compromise their faith? What could a religion be worth which admitted of compromise? What can any religion be worth if it does not teach loyalty to the God of heaven? What is there of any real value in the world, especially when on the very borders of eternity, unless it be God's acknowledgment of us as His children? (SNH 47-48)
  • ...with hand stretched upward in defiance, he asked, “And who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands?” (The Signs of the Times article God's Care for His Children May 6, 1897)