Sometimes we think we are ‘done for.’ Dead. Gone. That the end or the ruin of each of us has begun. Why do we think this? Largely because the enemy issues us with threats based on what our physical eyes can see happening around us in this earthly kingdom. He weaves webs of words to paint psychologically twisted narratives (or illusions) that tell us there is absolutely no hope and no other way than to bow the knee to his thoughts or plans.
“Bow the knee to this earthly idol; this scenario I have concocted,” the enemy says.
But like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, we do not bow our knee to the spirit of this age because we know there is a different narrative—a higher narrative at play. A love narrative.
“Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, because you have not bowed down to the god of this world—this perfect, golden image you see before you—I’m going to throw you into a furnace heated to seven times hotter than normal. You will surely die a torturous death.” The carefully crafted narrative of the enemy is not adopted by the three. They know there is an unseen realm that trumps the seen realm every.single.time.
Understanding the power of their God and His Kingdom the three say, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to answer you on this point. If it be so, our God Whom we serve is able to rescue us from the furnace of blazing fire, and He will rescue us from your hand, O king. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up!”
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego don’t even entertain Nebuchadnezzar—“we do not need to answer you on this point.” In other words, “this is a no-brainer. Your narrative / argument is moot because it does not fit with what our God says or who our God is.”
The moment the three are thrown into the fiery furnace, they are not burned. In fact, a fourth figure meets them in the furnace and they walk around together without so much as a thread of their clothing catching alight. The King of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego’s unseen Kingdom has met them in the middle of the the enemy’s dark narrative and has brought His greater solutions into their situation. And at this, the words of Jesus keep echoing through my mind: “According to your faith let it be done to you” (Matthew 9:29).
During another particular ‘wow’ of a moment in the Old Testament, Elisha’s servant experienced a bit of a freak out (or a panic attack) because he had awoken to an entire army of men, chariots, and horses, who had been sent by the King of Syria to capture Elisha. Imagine seeing this with your earthly eyes: fearsome soldiers girded up with armour, stood up in chariots behind massive horses, bearing the flags or the seals of the Syrian kingdom.
Elisha’s servant freaked out at this sight because he was only seeing according to the kingdom of this world. His narrative was therefore in line with the kingdom of this world—“Argh! We’re gonna die!” Thank goodness Elisha was there to bring a teachable moment; Elisha was seeing a completely different scenario taking place. Elisha’s faith was invested into a whole other King of a whole other Realm. He asked His Heavenly King to pull back the spiritual ‘curtains’ so that his earthly servant could truly see.
The word says, “The servant of the man of God got up early and went out, and behold, there was an army with horses and chariots encircling the city. Elisha’s servant said to him, “Oh no, my master! What are we to do?” Elisha answered, “Do not be afraid, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” Then Elisha prayed and said, “Lord, please, open his eyes that he may see.” And the Lord opened the servants eyes and he saw; and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire surrounding Elisha.”
We currently have two kingdoms functioning at the same time. In fact, we always have and (for the time being) we will. The question is, what will our faith allow? Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence OF THINGS NOT YET SEEN. Will we allow the massive, unending power, dominion and authority of HIS Kingdom to move into our sight, or will we only allow the solutions that our eyes and minds can produce here on earth. There is a vast difference between the two.
Presently we have an invitation not to bow to the spirit if this age and to ask our Heavenly Papa to open our eyes to His realm and His solutions. The choice is ours. Are we truly His Sons and Daughters, or do we just think we are? If we are His Sons and Daughters, what is His is ours and what is ours is His. And that’s a game-changer.
Photo by Rasto SK