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What was the name of the king? [slide 2] This time, the story is about Daniel's 3 friends [slide 3] and their names were: Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego Let's have a go at saying those names. Now I'm going to need some help as I tell today's story: Whenever I say these names, you can say them with me, so let's try that... I'll hold up my fingers like this one at a time as we say the names... In this story, there's a fiery furnace [slide 4] and I need you to listen out for the words, 'fiery furnace,' and every time you hear that phrase, you have to say, "Oh no, not the fiery furnace!" with gestures. So let's try that: I was walking along one day when by the side of the road I saw the fiery furnace... oh yes, the fiery furnace... and the fiery furnace... was so hot that I ran past it as fast as I could. Now, when I say, 'heat up the furnace' you need to say, "more heat, more heat" with gestures. Let's try that: The man said, 'heat up the furnace'... but it wasn't hot enough, so he said it again, 'heat up the furnace,'... STATUE King Nebuchadnezzar built a tall, tall statue made out of gold. It was 27 metres tall (as tall as a 9 storey building) and 2.5 metres wide. Huge! And made out of gold. Everyone could see it from miles around. ORDER-WORSHIP The king ordered everyone to bow down and worship this statue he'd made, whenever they heard the music playing. And if they didn't, he would throw them in the fiery furnace! oh no, not the fiery furnace! yes, the fiery furnace oh no, not the fiery furnace! S,M &A REFUSE So whenever the people heard the music, they would all bow down to worship the golden statue. Everyone, that is, except...shadrach, meshach and abednego You see, they worshiped God, just like Daniel did, so they didn't want to worship the statue. Now, when the officials found out that shadrach, meshach and abednego wouldn't bow down and worship the golden statue, they told the king.
AUDIENCE w KING The king called for shadrach, meshach and abednego and said, "Is it true that you don't serve my gods? And is it true that you won't bow down and worship the golden statue? Now come on, it's not that hard, you just need to listen out for the music, and when you hear it, you bow down and worship the statue, and that's good. But, if you don't do that, then I'll have to throw you into the fiery furnace oh no, not the fiery furnace! and no god can save you from that." But shadrach, meshach and abednego said, "We will not worship the statue. You can throw us into the fiery furnace oh no, not the fiery furnace! but our God is able to save us. And even if he doesn't save us, we will still not worship the statue. We will only worship the God who made the heavens and the earth." FURNACE Well that made the king furious and he said, "right! that's it! you're going into the fiery furnace!" oh no, not the fiery furnace! He was so angry, he wanted the furnace to be even hotter than normal, so he said, "heat up the furnace!" more heat, more heat but it still wasn't hot enough, so he said, "heat up the furnace!" more heat, more heat but it still wasn't hot enough, so he said, "heat up the furnace!" more heat, more heat In the end, the furnace was not once, not twice, not 3 times, not 4 times, not 5 times, not 6 times, but 7 times hotter than usual. Then he had shadrach, meshach and abednego tied up so they couldn't move. The guards took them to the furnace, but it was so hot that it killed the guards and shadrach, meshach and abednego fell into the flames. 4 MEN Now the king looked into the furnace and saw an amazing thing - first of all, the men inside weren't dead, and they weren't tied up anymore, they were walking around. And, even more amazing, he counted the men.. 1 2 3 4 and shook his head and tried again, 1 2 3 4, and then asked - "how many people did we throw into the fire?" "3" the officials said. "Well how come there are four people there now? And one of them looks like an angel!" GOD Suddenly he realised that the God who shadrach, meshach and abednego worshiped was a powerful God and he had saved them from dying in the fire. So he called to the three friends to come out of the furnace, and they came out unharmed - none of them had been burnt at all. King Nebuchadnezzar was astounded, and he said, "Praise the God of shadrach, meshach and abednego, who sent an angel and saved these men from the fire! These men were willing to die rather than obey me and serve any other god but their own. Their God is amazing!"
Are there times when you need to stand up to things that you don’t agree with? Do you find it hard to be brave at times like that? Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego trusted God to help them. Who can you turn to for help? Prayer Dear God, Thank you for the rescuing Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego and for them being brave and deciding to only worship you, standing up to King Nebuchadnezzar. Help us to stand up to bullies. Amen