In today’s first reading from Daniel 3, we see the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego getting thrown into the fiery furnace. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego had faith. Faith enough to know that when they got thrown into the furnace, God would set them free. In today’s Gospel from John 8, Jesus talks about being set free. He says, “If the Son frees you, you will be free indeed.” But His listeners didn’t quite get it. After all, they were not slaves.
King Nebuchadnezzar had all the power in the world. He knew that he had the power of life and death. He decreed that anyone who did not bow down and worship the golden statue that he had made would pay the ultimate price for their insolence. But our three heroes would have no part of it. So the king threw them into the fiery furnace. God protected them, and they walked out of the fire.
Don’t we often feel as though we are walking through the fire? Life can be a real crucible. The old saying “trial by fire” is so true. This is where Jesus’ words, “The truth will set you free,” come into play. We must always remember that the truth is a person: Jesus Christ. When we hold fast to the truth, we will be set free – even from the fire all around us.
Father, help us conform ourselves to the Truth, that we may not be consumed by the fires of life. Amen.
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