- Religion and Philosophy
Jesus will Return Like a Lion in Fire
While attending an Adventist youth conference in Lester, UK, visions of the second coming of Jesus flashed through my mind while the preacher was preaching from the book of Daniel. I noticed some striking similarities between what the Bible has to say about Jesus’ return and the stories of the fiery furnace and Daniel in the lions den.
Jesus and the Fiery Furnace
In the story of the fiery furnace, in Daniel 3, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were threatened to be thrown into a fiery furnace if they did not fall down and worship the golden image that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up in the plain of Dura. They could not do so because that would be idolatry—a violation of the second commandment (Exodus 20:4, 5).
Therefore, the three faithful Hebrews were commanded to be thrown into the fiery furnace by King Nebuchadnezzar. However, instead of them being destroyed by the fire, it was the servants of King Nebuchadnezzar who were destroyed!
Then these men were bound in their coats, their breeches, and their hats, and their other garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. Therefore because the king's commandment was urgent and the furnace exceedingly hot, the flame of the fire slew those men who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.
Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astonished, and rose up in haste and spoke, and said unto his counselors, "Did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire?" They answered and said unto the king, "True, O king." He answered and said, "Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.
Daniel 3:21-25, 21st Cent. KJV
Notice also that Jesus was with His faithful servants in the fire! Does this remind you of what the Bible says about Jesus’ return?
... the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from Heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who know not God, and who obey not the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power.
2 Thessalonians 2:7-9
At Jesus’ second coming, He comes with fire that destroys the wicked but does no harm to the righteous. This is just like the story of the fiery furnace in Daniel 3!
The Lion of the Tribe of Judah
There’s a similar parallel in the story of Daniel and the lions den as well. There, King Darius’ governors tricked him into signing a decree that would force Daniel to worship him on pains of death. When Daniel wouldn’t worship King Darius, he was thrown into the lions den as punishment. However, the lions didn’t hurt him.
Then the king arose very early in the morning and went in haste unto the den of lions. And when he came to the den, he cried with a lamentable voice unto Daniel; and the king spoke and said to Daniel, "O Daniel, servant of the living God, is thy God, whom thou servest continually, able to deliver thee from the lions?" Then said Daniel unto the king, "O king, live for ever! My God hath sent His angel, and hath shut the lions' mouths, that they have not hurt me, inasmuch as before Him innocency was found in me; and also before thee, O king, have I done no hurt."
Then was the king exceeding glad for him, and commanded that they should take Daniel up out of the den. So Daniel was taken up out of the den, and no manner of hurt was found upon him, because he believed in his God. And the king commanded, and they brought those men who had accused Daniel, and they cast them into the den of lions—them, their children, and their wives; and the lions had the mastery of them, and broke all their bones in pieces before they came to the bottom of the den.
The lions didn’t hurt Daniel. Instead, they killed his wicked enemies! This reminds of Jesus’ second coming, when God’s saints will be delivered and the wicked persecutors who plot their death will themselves be destroyed, by the Lion of the Tribe of Judah—Jesus Christ (Revelation 5:5)!
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