Monday, May 20, 2013

Even in Exile

"'O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. 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. 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 3:16b-18

In the book of Daniel (the final major prophet) we see two things: the faith and trust of Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, the unfailing goodness and love of God. Judah had just been exiled into Babylon. These four men had reason to believe that God had abandoned them... but he hadn't. Even in these decades of exile, the LORD not only remained active in their lives (in saving the three men from the furnace and Daniel from the lions), but he even continued to communicate with them through prophets like Daniel. God never fails to be with us. The verses above shown how deliberate and immovable the faith of these men were. They knew God would be with them in their death sentence, either by saving them from the fire or by bringing them to eternal life. The former happened immediately. The latter happened a while later. In Daniel, we see that God never left his people, even when they were forced to leave their Promised Land. And he never leaves us either. Jesus surely is with us to the very end of the age (Matthew 28:20). He was with his people in exile, and he is with us today... Always.

-- Jonathan

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