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But If Not Faith
The story of Daniel and his three friends, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego have thrilled us and intrigued us since childhood.  We all know the story of the three Hebrew boys and the fiery furnace of the king.  They were commanded to bow before the king's golden image he had set up and if they didn't they would be thrown into the furnace.  Their response is found in Daniel 3:17-18-If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king.  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.  They believed completely that God was able to deliver and that He would deliver them out of the king's hand, then they said, "but if not."  I wonder if we have the kind of faith that says, "I believe the Lord can.  I am trusting that the Lord will.  But if He doesn't I will still serve Him only."  That is "But if not faith."  There are those whose faith never gets that far.  Here's the question I have for you.  Will you serve Him still if He doesn't answer your prayer as you desire?  Will you still be faithful if He doesn't give healing as you want?  Will you still honor Him if He doesn't come through as you wanted Him to in a particular situation?  Will you still be faithful to serve Him then?  It's easy to be faithful when He answers like you had hoped and when you had hoped, but if not, will you still be faithful to Him?  If God's plan is different from yours, will you still trust Him?  These three said they would, even if God's plan was not to deliver them as they hoped He would.  It's something to consider.  Do we have the "but if not" kind of faith?
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