Archive for August 27th, 2007

Courage or Stupidity?

Monday, August 27th, 2007

Today’s scripture: Daniel 3:1-18 (NRSV) (The Message)

As you read, consider: What might God be saying to me in this passage? Summarize your thoughts in a sentence or two.

My thoughts (Julie Benson):

what's a trigon?The first nuance I find in this scripture (that the musician in me cannot overlook) is the repetition of the list of instruments. Lest there be any confusion, the list is given four times within ten verses: the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon (a triangular lyre), harp, drum, and entire musical ensemble.

Is that because someone didn’t get it? Could Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego have changed their story when the heat was turned up saying, “Oh, we’re sorry! You meant the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp AND the drum! Our mistake! We didn’t know you included the drum, so we didn’t bow down!” No, the story didn’t quite happen that way.

What we can glean from this passage is that it took an enormous amount of courage for these men to maintain their convictions and to stand up against King Nebuchadnezzar’s decree.

But what does this courage consist of? Examining the internal workings of courage, I think we’ll find fear, faith, and determination. Unfortunately, some people mistake courage for stupidity.

During the tragedy of Columbine, a story emerged about Cassie Bernall. Rumor has it that the perpetrator held Cassie captive, pressed the barrel of a gun to her head, and asked, “Do you believe in God?” The answer was a resounding yes. And as a result of gunfire, Cassie catapulted to eternal victory with her Savior.

Courage or stupidity?

It’s your turn now. You are faced with the choice to live with courage, professing your faith in God — or you can be a closet Christian.

Thought for the day: “Do you believe in God?” What will be your answer?

We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. If you need a place to get started, consider the guidelines on the How to Pray page.

"Be still, and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10
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