Not For Sale
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How amazing that the Hebrew children were able to pass through the raging hot fire not only to have their bonds burnt off, but to do so without showing a trace or effect of the flames and smoke in their hair, on their garments, or in the scent about themselves. (See Daniel chapter 3, verse 27 in the Old Testament) This made it far easier to turn one’s attention the “One like the Son of God” who came alongside of them in the furnace. The emphasis was not on the fact that they were now free of their bonds, or on what a trial they had been through, or the ongoing effect the trial left on them, so much as upon the One who was with them in the flames and carried them through the fiery trial and liberated them. It was to that One that attention was now drawn when Nebuchadnezzar immediately exclaimed, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshac and Abednego…..!” (verse 28)
The question that arises is, do we draw more attention to ourselves and the fires and fights we have been through and their lasting effects on us, than we do to the One who faithfully carried us through and delivered us in those fires and fights and firefights? Do people still smell the smoke upon us as we testify. Do they plainly see the singeing, scorching effects of the fires in our hair and clothes? It makes for good drama and storytelling (complete with exaggeration perhaps) but it leaves the listeners with more impressions of flames and the scorched people who survived them than the power and fresh presence of the overcoming Savior who rescued them.
A punch drunk ex-heavyweight champion boxer (and I confess I feel like one sometimes) elicits more pity for his present and pathetic state of disability than he does awe and admiration for the beauty of the sport and the superb skill he once possessed that made him a contender and a champion in the first place. To what or to Whom do we direct the attention and the emphasis, that may be the difference between being a ex-champion and a champion for life…. and eternity.
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