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The Faithfulness of Three Young Israelites and God’s Deliverance
1Nebuchadnezzar the king made a statue of gold. Its height was sixty cubits and its width was six cubits; he set it up in the valley of Dura in the province of Babylon. 2Then Nebuchadnezzar the king sent directions to assemble the satraps, the prefects, and the governors, the counselors, the treasurers, the judges, the magistrates and all of the officials of the provinces to come to the dedication of the statue that Nebuchadnezzar the king had set up. 3Then the satraps, the prefects, the governors, the counselors, the treasurers, the judges, the magistrates, and all the officials of the province were assembled for the dedication of the statue that Nebuchadnezzar the king had set up, and were standing before#Literally “to the front” the statue that Nebuchadnezzar had set up. 4Then the herald proclaimed aloud,#Literally “with power” “To you it is commanded,#Literally “they are saying” O peoples, nations and people of all languages,#Literally “the nations and the languages” 5that at the time that you hear the sound of the horn, the flute, the lyre, the trigon, the harp, the drum and all kinds of music, you must fall down and you must worship the statue of gold#Aramaic “the gold” that Nebuchadnezzar the king has set up. 6And whoever#Literally “who that” does not fall down and worship will be thrown immediately#Literally “the time” into the midst of the furnace of blazing fire.” 7Therefore,#Literally “All of because this” at that time,#Literally “at the time” as soon as#Literally “as that” all the peoples heard the sound of the horn, the flute, the lyre, the trigon, the harp and all kinds of music, all the peoples, the nations and people of all languages#Literally “the nations and the languages” were falling down and were worshiping the statue of gold#Aramaic “the gold” that Nebuchadnezzar the king had set up.
8Therefore#Literally “All because of this” at this time#Literally “at it the time” some astrologers#Literally “Chaldean men” came forward and they denounced the Jews.#Literally “they ate their pieces of the Jews” 9They responded and said#Literally “they answered and were saying” to Nebuchadnezzar the king, “O king, may you live forever!#Literally “to eternity” 10You, O king, have made a decree that everyone#Literally “all of humanity” who hears the sound of the horn, the flute, the lyre, the trigon, the harp and the drum and all kinds of music, he shall fall down and shall worship the statue of gold.#Aramaic “the gold” 11And whoever#Literally “And who that” does not fall down#Literally “not he falls down” and worship shall be thrown into the midst of the furnace of blazing fire. 12However there are Judean men whom you have appointed#Aramaic “whom you have appointed them” over the affairs of the province of Babylon—Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego—these men, O king, pay you no heed#Literally “not they pay heed to you” and were not serving your god, and the statue of gold#Aramaic “the gold” that you set up they are not worshiping.”
13Then Nebuchadnezzar said in rage and anger to bring in Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego; then they brought in these men before the king. 14Nebuchadnezzar answered and said to them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, that you are not serving my god, and you are not worshiping the statue of gold#Aramaic “the gold” that I have set up? 15Now if you are ready so that when#Literally “at that time” you hear the sound of the horn, the flute, the lyre, the trigon, the harp and the drum and all kinds of music, you fall down and you worship the statue that I have made, that will be good. But if you do not worship it, immediately#Literally “at that very time” you will be thrown into the midst of the furnace of blazing fire, and who is the god#Literally “who he god” who#Or “that” will rescue you from my hands?”
16Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego answered and said to the king, Nebuchadnezzar, “We have no need on this matter to present a defense to you.#Literally “to return to you” 17If it is so,#Literally “If there is” our God, whom we serve, is able to rescue us from the furnace of blazing fire. And from your hand, O king, let him rescue us. 18And if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods,#Literally “your gods not there is us serving” and the statue of gold#Aramaic “the gold” that you have set up we will not worship.”
The Wrath of the King and His Fiery Furnace of Death
19Then Nebuchadnezzar was filled with anger and the image of his face was changed toward#Literally “against” Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, so he ordered and said#Literally “answering and saying” to heat up the one furnace seven times what was usual to heat it up. 20And he commanded the strongest men of the guards#Literally “to the strong men, men of strength” who were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego and to throw them into the furnace of blazing fire. 21Then these men were bound with their garments, their trousers and their turbans and their other clothing, and they were thrown into the midst of the furnace of blazing fire. 22Therefore#Literally “because of this” because#Literally “from that” the word of the king was severe and the furnace was exceedingly hot, the flame of the fire killed these men who lifted up Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. 23But these men, the three of them, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, fell down into the midst of the furnace of blazing fire, and they were bound.
24Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astonished, and he rose up in haste and he asked, saying to his advisers, “Did we not throw three men, bound, into the midst of the fire? They answered, saying to the king, “Certainly, O king!” 25He answered,#Literally “was answering” saying, “Look, I see four men unbound walking in the midst of the fire and there is no damage to them, and the#Aramaic “its” appearance of the fourth man resembles the son of a god.” 26Then Nebuchadnezzar approached the door of the furnace of blazing fire, and he called out, saying, “Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, servants#Literally “his servant” of the Most High God, come out#Or “Go out” and come here!” 27And the satraps, the prefects, the governors and the advisors of the king were assembling, and they saw these men, that the fire had no power over their bodies, and the hair of their heads was#Aramaic plural not singed, and their garments were not harmed, and the smell of fire did not come from them.
The King’s Praise for the Great Deliverance of the Three Young Israelites
28Nebuchadnezzar responded,#Literally “answering” saying, “Blessed be their God, the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, who sent his angel#Or “messenger” and rescued his servants who trusted in him, and the command of the king they disobeyed, and they gave their bodies so that they did not serve and did not worship any god except their God. 29And from me is set forth#Literally “setting out” a decree that any people, nation, or language that may utter criticism against their God—the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego—will be broken into pieces and their#Aramaic “his” house will be made like ruins. For#Literally “All of because” there is not another God who is able to rescue like this God.” 30Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in the province of Babylon.
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