Anger has a cost, and typically generates an undesirable fallout. We find this to be true in Daniel 3. King Nebuchadnezzar became incensed when he discovered that three Hebrew men (Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego) were not worshipping a gold statue, a fixture that was constructed to represent King Nebuchadnezzar’s glory. King Nebuchadnezzar then ordered Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego be apprehended, and brought before him. The king gave the men another opportunity to bend their knees, which would have epitomized idolatry, in putting an image before adoration, and loyalty to, God. But when the brave followers of God refused to compromise their spiritual integrity King Nebuchadnezzar hastily, and angrily, demanded that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego be thrown into a raging fire. King Nebuchadnezzar wanted death that day, and got it. But the loss of life did not come from the godly believers, but rather from Nebuchadnezzar’s army. The soldiers who forced Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego into the furnace were themselves killed, but not Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.
Human anger often yields collateral damage. It is nothing short of destructive. It tears apart. It levels. It offers no redemptive qualities. Daniel 3:22 informs us that King Nebuchadnezzar’s request for the execution of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego was sudden, meaning the logistics of his request were not well-conceived, which resulted in the death of soldiers. This encapsulates the folly of anger. It removes reason. It assaults logic. It is rash, rushed, and unwise. King Nebuchadnezzar’s actions in Daniel 3 are a warning regarding the danger of anger. So may we, as God’s followers, shun anger and enjoy the peace that only the Lord’s presence, and holy wisdom, can provide.
Daniel 3:22 “The king’s command was so urgent and the furnace so hot that the flames of the fire killed the soldiers who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego…” (NIV)
Kevin Orr (8/7/2019)