.           all rights belong to Tanis Harms –
.             refer to

RESCUED FROM FIERY FURNACE - written by Tanis Harms

TOPIC:        salvation, obeying God
SCRIPTURE:    Daniel 3:1-30, 6:27
Style:        drama/conversation:  Daniel tells the story
.             about when they were taken into captivity
.             and his friends refused to bow to the idol
Cast:         NARRATOR, DANIEL (adult),
.             KING, OVERSEER, GUARD
Set & Props:  crown, whip, music, screen (optional),
.             streamers of red, orange, yellow


(NARRATOR enters.)

NARRATOR   Ever wonder what we should do
.          if someone tells us to do something
.          that we know we should not do?
.          Well, the world was created for us,
.          and we were created – because God wants
.          to have a loving relationship with us.
.          But we were all given a choice,
.          and mankind chose to sin.
.          So now there is sin in the world,
.          with problems and dangers.
.          But no matter what the circumstances,
.          we can choose to look to God, because
.          “He delivers and rescues” (Daniel 6:27).
.          Today we are going to hear a true story
.          from the Bible, which happened
.          a long, long time ago – -
.          The story is about Daniel’s friends.

(NARRATOR exits.  DANIEL/a enters and stands
to the side.)

DANIEL/a   My name is Daniel.  I was born in Judah,
.          in the land of Israel.
.          When I was young, my people were captured
.          and taken to a strange, and dangerous country.
.          I was also taken away from my family,
.          and made to serve the king of Babylon.

(KING enters at center stage.)

KING       Where is my overseer?                        2

(KING looks at congregation.)

KING       If you happen to see my overseer – tell him
.          that the great king of Babylon
.          has demanded to see him.

(KING exits.  OVERSEER enters and looks around.
NARRATOR steps in to get OVERSEER’S attention.)

NARRATOR   Ah, excuse me, are you the overseer?

OVERSEER   Me?  Ah, yes, I am the overseer.

NARRATOR   I think there was a message for you.
.          from the king of Babylon.
.          Now let me see, what was it again?
.          (give congregation kids a chance to answer)
.          Ah yes, the king demands to see you.

OVERSEER   I hope I’m not in trouble.

NARRATOR   He did not say.

OVERSEER   Did he seem angry?

NARRATOR   Not that I could tell.

OVERSEER   I better get going then.

(NARRATOR exits as OVERSEER hurries off stage.
KING enters.)

DANIEL/a   Now, this king did not serve or worship God
.          and tried to make the people do things
.          that they should not do.

(OVERSEER enters and approaches KING with a bow.)

OVERSEER   Oh great king of Babylon.  You demanded
.          to see me?  I hope that you are pleased
.          with my service.

KING       I want an update of what you have
.          been doing.

OVERSEER   We have been building that large image
.          of gold, just as you asked us to do.

KING       Is it finished yet?                          3

OVERSEER   It is, oh great king of Babylon.

KING       What has taken you so long?

OVERSEER   You wanted it to be very tall,
.          and completely covered in gold.

KING       And I ALAWYS get what I ask for!
.          Now, call all the leaders and servants
.          in my country.  We will have
.          a dedication service for my idol.

(OVERSEER bows and exits.)

DANIEL/a   I had other business to do somewhere else,
.          but my friends Shadrach, Meshach
.          and Abed-nego were there.  As well as
.          many, many other people.

(Carrying a whip, GUARD enters, bows to KING, then stands
waiting.  OVERSEER ushers in SHADRACH, MESHACH and
ABED-NEGO.  OVERSEER goes to stand beside KING, who nods.  
As OVERSEER makes announcement, he looks around,
to give the illusion that there is a huge crowd.)

OVERSEER   Attention everyone, the king has built us
.          a great golden image.

(As OVERSEER says this, he motions up high and behind him
as if the image is offstage.  SHADRACH, MESHACH and
ABED-NEGO look up at it, then back at the king.)

OVERSEER   And the king commands that as soon as
.          you hear the loud music – you must
.          fall down and worship the golden image.
.          If you do not – you disobey the king –
.          and you will be thrown into a furnace
.          of blazing fire.

(SHADRACH, MESHACH and ABED-NEGO look at each other,
with concerned expressions.)

DANIEL/a   Well!  My friends, Shadrach, Meshach and
.          Abed-nego, knew that if they obeyed the king
.          and did what the king commanded –
.          this would then make them disobey
.          what God has commanded.  They knew that
.          no matter what – they were going to obey God.
.                                                      4
(LOUD MUSIC plays.  Turning, OVERSEER gets onto the floor
in low bow, as if the pillar is offstage, behind him.  
GUARD also gets onto the floor to bow low.  SHADRACH,
MESHACH and ABED-NEGO stay standing.  KING sees this.)

KING       STOP!

(MUSIC stops.  OVERSEER and GUARD stand back up.)

KING       Those three over there did not bow down.
.          They have disobeyed my command!
.          Bring them here.

(OVERSEER nods to GUARD, who ushers BOYS up to KING.)

KING       You three did not obey my command
.          to bow down to the golden image.

OVERSEER   They also refuse to worship or serve
.          any of your other gods, which you have set up.

KING       (to BOYS)  Is this true?


KING       Well!  I am – going to give you -
.          one more chance.  And if you do not bow down
.          you will all be thrown into the furnace
.          of blazing fire.  You will die!

(King nods and LOUD MUSIC plays.  OVERSEER and GUARD
quickly turn and get to the floor in a low bow.  
SHADRACH, MESHACH and ABED-NEGO remain standing.)

KING       STOP!

(MUSIC stops.  OVERSEER and GUARD stand up.
KING paces angrily as he addresses the BOYS.)

KING       Why are you disobeying me?  Why do you
.          disobey my commands?  Why do you not worship
.          or serve the other gods that I set up?
.          I warned you that if you disobeyed me,
.          you would be thrown into the furnace
.          of blazing fire – and die.

(KING stops to stare at BOYS, waiting for their answer.  
SHADRACH mimes talking to KING as DANIEL/a narrates.)

DANIEL/a   Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego explained    5
.          to the king that they would only worship
.          and serve the one and only living God.
.          And that they were willing to die for Him.
.          And if our God wanted to save them
.          from the furnace of blazing fire,
.          God is able to do that.  Because
.          He delivers and rescues.  And if God
.          was NOT going to save them from this,
.          even if they died, no matter what,
.          they were still going to obey God.

(KING begins to pace angrily, fists pumping the air.)

KING       The fire in the furnace will now be
.          seven times hotter than usual!

(NARRATOR enters and has HELPERS hand out streamers.)

NARRATOR   The king asked that the fire in the furnace
.          was to be made extra hot.  And the flames
.          were made seven times hotter
.          than they usually were.

(NARRATOR gets the kids to wave their streamers around
to create the flames.)

NARRATOR   Okay, this is hot enough!  Now –
.          let us watch and see what happens.

(NARRATOR motions the kids to stop waving the streamers
and to pay attention and watch, then exits as...)

(KING turns to the GUARD and points a finger toward
either a screen or the exit across the stage.)

KING       Throw them into the furnace now!

(GUARD braces himself, even though afraid.  Then as GUARD
his face with a hand, miming that it is very hot.  
The BOYS calmly step off stage or behind the screen.  
GUARD falls down dead, remaining still.)

DANIEL/a   The fire was so hot, that the guards
.          who threw Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego
.          into the furnace - fell down dead –
.          just from being NEAR the furnace.

(KING nods with a sigh.)
.                                                      6
KING       There, that is done!  Let that be a lesson
.          to everyone.

OVERSEER   Ahhh, but – ah – look!  (pointing)

KING       (looking with squinted eyes)
.          Can that be?  It looks like those boys
.          are walking around in the furnace!
.          They are not getting burned up.
.          Not even their clothes are burning!
.          How can that be?  Huh?  How can that be?
.          And did we not throw three into the fire?

OVERSEER   Yes, there were only three:
.          Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego.

KING       But – I see four!  Who is that fourth man
.          in there with them?  He – he looks - like -
.          a son of the gods!

OVERSEE    I do not know.  I cannot explain that.

(KING approaches the “furnace” part way, shielding
himself from the heat, and calls out.)

KING       Shadrach, Meshach, Abed-nego! come out!
.          You servants of the Most High God!  Come here!

(SHADRACH, MESHACH and ABED-NEGO enter and approach KING.  
KING examines the BOYS.)

KING       How can this be?  Your hair is not even singed
.          from the fire.  And your clothes are
.          not damaged at all.  (sniffing the BOYS)
.          You do not even smell like smoke.
.          How can this be?

(SHADRACH mimes talking to KING as DANIEL/a narrates.)

DANIEL/a   Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego explained
.          to the king that it was the one and only
.          living God who protected them from death.
.          God is able to do that;  because
.          He delivers and rescues.

KING       Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach
.          and Abed-nego, who sent His angel
.          and protected His servants
.          who put their trust in Him.
.                                                      7
(KING turns to talk to kids, amazed.)

KING       Even though they disobeyed my commands,
.          they were willing to die, so as to only
.          worship and serve their God.
.          Because of this and what I have just seen,
.          I now make a command that any people
.          who says anything bad against the God
.          of Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego
.          will be killed and their houses destroyed!
.          There is truly no other god
.          who is able to deliver in this way.


KING       You will get higher positions of honor
.          in my kingdom because of this.


DANIEL/a   And because of their obedience to God,
.          Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego
.          were successful in the land of Babylon.
.          Even though we were in a strange
.          and dangerous country, with no family,
.          God was with us and protected us,
.          because He delivers and rescues.

(DANIEL/a exits as NARRATOR enters.)

NARRATOR   As you could see, Shadrach, Meshach and
.          Abed-nego had some serious challenges
.          in their lives.  But they chose to trust
.          in their relationship with God,
.          and they chose to obey God no matter what,
.          because “He delivers and rescues.”
.          And one day, God was going to send someone
.          to deliver and rescue people
.          from something even bigger –
.          so that we can choose to have
.          a relationship with God – forever.
.          So no matter what the circumstances,
.          we can know that God is greater than anything,
.          and we can choose to trust in God,
.          because “He delivers and rescues” Daniel 6:27.

(These skits can stand alone, or be used in a series.  
The next skit is “
Rescued from Hand of God”.)