Week 36: Daniel 3

The Three Men in the Fiery Furnace

Triple Play

Use the Triple Play as you read with your family, your small group, or even in your personal devotion times!

Highs and Lows: Start by sharing at least one high and one low from the day. Don’t skip this step!

Daily Dig: As you read the text of the week, customize your experience with resources found here to help you grow!

Pray: Take time to pray about the highs and lows and what you’ve read. Give thanks for the highs, ask for help in the lows, and pray for God’s Word to be alive in you each week!

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Kiddo Activity

Fiery Furnace S’Mores

Did you happen to see the video this week yet? You are NOT going to want to miss Mrs. Sherman’s daring experiment. Let’s just say this video made even Mrs. Wieneke a bit nervous and we know how crazy Mrs. Wieneke can be. ☺ We also want to make sure that NO ONE tries this at home (St. Matthew disclaimer). ☺

This is one of my all-time favorite Bible stories. Three brave men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, refused to bow down and worship the golden image even if it meant being thrown in the fiery furnace. I love this verse from Daniel 3 (just a little different version than your Story Bible): “If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and He will deliver us…BUT EVEN IF HE DOES NOT…we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up” (Daniel 3:17-18). God could save them…they knew He had the power to do so, BUT even if He didn’t, they would still praise and worship Him. What faith and trust in God! The cool part of this story (besides them being saved of course) is the change in Nebuchadnezzar. He saw the power of God and the trust the three men had in God that he changed his decree that no one could say anything against their God. God takes care of us too! It might not feel like a huge save in a fire, but God continually watches over us, protects us, and promises to never leave us. He also sent Jesus to be our Savior. We, like Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego have many reasons to love and serve God with our whole heart.

Have fun making your “Fiery Furnace S’more Snack”. Since it requires an oven, make sure you have a big person help you!

Instructions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Put one graham cracker square on a baking sheet (I gave you two just in case). Add approximately 10 chocolate chips, 8 small marshmallows, and 3 Teddy Grahams on your cracker.

When I first did this experiment, I toasted the cracker, marshmallows, teddy grahams, and chocolate chips in the oven for 5 minutes (just enough time for the marshmallows to brown). However, since the marshmallows you have are a little stale from packing months ago, this time it took me 10 minutes in the oven. You will notice that the chocolate will melt, the marshmallows will brown, but the Teddy Grahams will NOT burn…just like Shadrach Meshach, and Abednego.

3. When you pull it out of the oven, add the fourth, different colored Teddy Graham. If you remember from your story, there were four men unbound walking in the fire not hurt at all from the blazing flames. This extra person is the “son of God”.

Enjoy your snack!

 

Devotions

Written by people you worship with at St Matthew.

 

But if not…Lessons from the Fire

By Charen Buyce

What a year! I’m sure we have all said this many times. Many ups and downs in our daily lives, more than most of us can remember in our lifetimes. When I left the office in March 2020, I thought it might be a rough couple of weeks with a few challenges, like toilet paper that was not my preferred brand. We would surely be back to usual in just a few short weeks. Little did we all know the changes, testing, and trials life would bring.  

The story of the three men in the fiery furnace in Daniel 3 has always been an amazing testament of faith to me. Even while facing the severe wrath of King Nebuchadnezzar, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego still refused to worship the idol made by the King, stating “our God will deliver us” (and then the really amazing part…) “but if not we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up” (Daniel 3:17-18). Even in the face of certain death in the fiery furnace, the three had unyielding faith!

Three lessons I take away from these verses are:

  1. God uses tests and trials to strengthen our faith. In this story, we see even these men of great faith still go through trials. God saved them from the fiery furnace, but they still had to go through the process of getting into the fire!  
  2. God is with us always. Although the three men went into the fiery furnace, four men were observed in the midst of the fire. Although we have struggles, God is faithful and sees us through these hard times. He will never leave us alone in the midst of our trials.
  3. Other people’s lives are changed for the good by our trials. In this story, we see King Nebuchadnezzar change his decree. “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego…for there is no other god who is able to rescue in this way” (Daniel 3:28). Although it’s tough going through trials, those around us are touched and changed by our experiences and see first-hand what being a follower of Jesus really means.

The first passages in the book of James have always struck home with me: “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing” (James 1:2-4). This is as counter-intuitive to our culture and human nature as it gets! It’s easy for me to find joy in the good times and the awesome blessings God provides to me every day. Through these verses in James and the story of the three men in the fiery furnace, I am reminded trials also have a purpose, and we can always trust in God to be with us every step of the way as our faith becomes perfect and complete.

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