Are You in Good Hands?

Insurance or Assurance?

You’ve probably heard the ad: “You’re in good hands with Allstate.” And that may be true when you’re talking about insurance. Insurance for your car, your house, your life may help you in this earthly life, but what about beyond that? What about assurance?

Do you have the assurance that you are in God’s hands? And that there, in the palm of His almighty hand, you are safe?

I can think of three men who had such assurance. Try imagining yourself in the shoes ( well, sandals more likely) of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego as they consider in whose hand they will entrust their lives.

Remember that these were relatively young men, men who had been torn from their homeland, separated from family, friends, culture, and language, and under constant pressure to be separated from their faith in their God. Even their names had been changed, from names that honored their God to names tied to false gods. Stop right now and take a few minutes to imagine yourself in their place.

Okay, now set yourself with them in this scene: The king who has made you a captive builds an image of gold and he commands everyone to fall down and worship the image. Everyone. That includes you. The thought of worshiping an image instead of God Almighty is abhorrent to you. You can’t even consider it. You won’t consider it. You decide to ignore the king’s command.

It becomes quite obvious to others that you aren’t obeying the king. And when some Chaldeans notice, they report you to him: “there are some Jews whom you have set over the affairs of the province of Babylon . . . who pay no attention to you, Your Majesty. They neither serve your gods nor worship the image of gold you have set up” (Daniel 3:12). Needless to say, this king who thinks so highly of himself and his power is infuriated. Daniel describes him as being “furious with rage” (3:13).

So now you’re called before this very angry king. He wasn’t used to having people ignore him. After all, he was king of kings. All mankind had been put in his hands (2:38)! Who were these who chose to take themselves out of it?

How are you feeling about now? Are you questioning your decision? Are you afraid of what’s going to happen to you? Are you trying to decide if you should give in and worship the image of gold? Those would all be very human emotions.

But King Nebuchadnezzar holds out to you a second chance. Do you take it? Consider the consequences of not doing so:

“Now when you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipe and all kinds of music, if you are ready to fall down and worship the image I made, very good. But if you do not worship it, you will be thrown immediately into a blazing furnace” (3:15).

And then the king challenges your faith and challenges your God: “Then what god will be able to rescue you from my hand?” (3:15)

How do you respond when Nebuchadnezzar challenges you with that? Does it fill you with fear? Or does it remind you that ultimately you are not in the king’s hand; you are in the hand of the Almighty King? Are you reassured that God is the one who is in control, even in this moment?

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego appear to have had that assurance, the assurance that their God was in control of all—including their lives, including the king who threatened to take their lives. They were assured they were safe in God’s hand.

            King 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
deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from your Majesty’s hand. But even if
he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your
gods or worship the image of gold you have set up (Daniel 3:16-18).

Needless to say, the king was even angrier with them. They were robbing him of his power. They were telling him he had no control over them and the way they chose to live their lives. They were taking themselves out of his hands and putting themselves and their lives into the hands of God.

Who or what am I letting control me? The opinions of others? My fear of people being offended by my faith? My concern for loss of family, friends, a job? Something else? Am I willing to take myself out of their hand and climb into the outstretched hand of God, having the assurance that His hand will protect me? That in His Almighty hand I will be safe?

I pray that you will know the assurance Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego had. That you will take that assurance and apply it to the events in your own life. It may not be that your life itself is being threatened, but we each at some time have challenges that call for us to take a stand. That call for us to decide in whose hand we will place our lives. May you know the assurance that His hand is both powerful and comforting, and may you learn to climb into it today and every day.

  • Consider Shadrach, Meschach, and Abednego. I encourage you to read the entire story (Daniel 3).
  • Meditate on and take hold of these truths about God’s hand:
    • “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10).
    • “The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with his hand” (Psalm 34:23-24).
    • “If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast” (Psalm 139:9).
    • “For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, ‘Do not fear; I will help you’” (Isaiah 41:13).
    • “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand” (John 10:27-28).
  • In light of these truths, consider your own life. Whose hand do you feel is controlling you right now? Are you ready to take yourself out of their hand (whether it be that of a person or circumstances) and put yourself firmly into the unshakeable, strong hand of God? Why not do so right now, in prayer and in action.

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