A large sum of money was spent in erecting an Image of gold on the plains of Dura. Everybody who was ‘somebody’ was invited to the dedication. It was a common thing for kings to erect images of themselves. At this state affair everyone was asked to bow and worship the image. Since the ten commandments forbade image worship the three Hebrew children (probably 46 years old) refused to give homage to the Idol. These men went all the way with God. They are not going to worship a graven image. Tied up with ropes they are cast into the furnace that was heated with extreme heat. Suddenly the king sees four men in the fire and they are unhurt. The real God appears in the very furnace from which he had made his god. The angry king now is forced to recognize the real and only god. This supernatural appearance cut the legs out from under the king. Read the whole story and see for yourself.
God had sent prophet after prophet with stern warnings for Israel and Judea to reform but they were stiff necked and rebellious, so God chose a heathen nation to carry out his orders, namely, seventy years of captivity. About ninety percent of the population was either killed by war or massacred by the Babylonians and only those who were skilled or strong enough for hard labor were taken into slavery. The Babylonians captured Jerusalem and carried away civilians as war captivities and not one was ever released. Among the captivities was a young man by the name of Daniel. This chapter will tell us how he rose from a captive slave to a high government official in both kingdoms. For the next three years Daniel and his three companions will be oriented into the Babylonian culture and religion. They learn the language of the king’s court and will become servants in the palace of Nebuchadnezzar. Throughout the book you will see that God will bring them down and exalt the God of Israel.