But if not, be it known to you, O king, that we will not serve your gods, nor worship the golden image which you have set up.
At the king's command, the three Hebrew youths came forth from the fire unscorched. The same scenes — differing simply in the lesser details — have more than once been witnessed upon the earth. The whole world is one wide plain of Darn, in which a golden image is set up. The God of Heaven proclaims His sovereign will. Rival divinities set up their groundless claims. They all have their due proportion of abject worshippers.
1. The man of the world bows down before the golden image. He adores that which seems nearest to himself. Popularity, and power, and place are foremost in his thoughts. He makes an idol of the world. Nothing is "real" in his sight which cannot be coined into money, and which will not aid him in his ambitious plans.
2. The Christian has full scope for the exercise of the determined spirit manifested by the Hebrew youths, in a consistent walk with God. "All that will live Godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution." If you are what you ought to be, no degree of prudence and reserve will free you altogether from the opposition and malice of an ungodly world. It seems, at first thought, a hard lot; but it has its blessings.
(John N. Norton.)
Parallel VersesKJV: But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.