In the opening part of this chapter the king manifests a very different attitude towards the Lord from that of 2:47. The probable reason is that between chapters 2 and 3 there is an interval of several years, during which Nebuchadnezzar had evidence that his own god was greater than the God of the Jews (cf. verse 15b).It accounts also for the enmity of the officials against Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. They would resent Jews continuing to hold rule over the province of Babylon.
- What threefold accusation was brought against the three Hebrews? Consider how subtly it was worded to stir the king’s anger.
- How does this trial of faith differ from anything these men had had to meet up to this time? For similar instances of courage, see Acts 4:8-12; 5:29-32; 2 Tim. 4:16-17. What purposes were served by the miracle of deliverance that God brought about?