It appears the command to bow down and worship the idol
came as a surprise to those summoned, otherwise the three men
might have avoided the dedication ceremony. If a surprise,
they had no time to prepare their response to the king. The
Spirit of God might have prompted their words for Jesus told
When you are brought before synagogues,
rulers and authorities, do not worry about how you will defend
yourselves or what you will say, for the Holy Spirit will
teach you at that time what you should say (Luke 12:11-12).
Actions usually speak louder than words, but one can
hear the Holy Spirit in their reply to the furious king.
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.
matters stand out in their reply: (1) The will of God might be
different from what they desire; and (2) their obedience was
not conditioned upon God doing what they desired. Undoubtedly,
when they were back in Jerusalem, they had heard what Yahweh
said through the prophet Jeremiah.
Do not pray for
this people nor offer any plea or petition for them, because I
will not listen when they call to me in the time of their
distress (Jeremiah 11:14).
Certainly, this was a time
of distress; would God listen if they called on Him?