This week's Bible study is adapted from the Explore the Bible curriculum.
Bible Passages: Daniel 3:1 8-12, 15-18, 24-25, 28
Discussion Questions: Where do you turn when facing a challenge to your faith? How does knowing others are facing the same challenge give you courage?
Food for Thought:
Jimmy hated running. He didn't mind the activity itself, but it was the loneliest thing he had ever done. He would get up early and run without seeing or talking to anyone. He was just about to give it up when he came across two other people in his neighborhood who were runners. The three began to meet every morning for regular runs. They pushed each other to go farther and faster than they would have ever imagined doing by themselves. Jimmy needed their encouragement to stick with it, and they needed his in return.
Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego faced a challenge that went beyond their physical fitness. As a group, they stood against the command to bow to the image honoring King Nebuchadnezzar. We don't know if they would have had the same resolve if they had been by themselves, but we can assume that their resolve was fueled by their being together. They addressed the King as a group (see 3:16). Whoever spoke did so for all three and they were viewed as one. They were unwavering as a group and God was honored through them.
Our world remains hostile toward Christ and His followers. We are being called upon to stand for Him in the face of multiple challenges. We need each other in taking that stand. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego demonstrate the value of a small group of believers united in faith and purpose. Our Sunday School class or small group can serve as the encouragement we need to face today's challenges. Within healthy Bible study groups we find the insight and strength to honor Christ in every area of our lives. Others need our encouragement and we need theirs if we are going to be the Shadrachs, Meshachs, and Abednegos of today.
Explore the Bible is an ongoing Bible study curriculum that helps groups dig into the key truths of each Bible book, while keeping the group on pace to study through the Bible books in a systematic way. More information can be found on the Internet at LifeWay.com/ExploreTheBible.
Other ongoing Bible study options for all ages offered by LifeWay can be found at LifeWay.com/SundaySchool.
Dwayne McCrary is the Project Team Leader for Adult and Young Adult Explore the Bible. You can follow him on twitter @gdwayne and Explore the Bible @explorethebible.
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