Daniel 3 - cast into the midst of a burning fiery furnace

Therefore, because the king’s command was urgent, and the furnace exceedingly hot, the flame of the fire killed those men who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego. And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.
Daniel 3:22‭-‬23 NKJV
I have a question about this passage.
Daniel’s three friends were thrown in the furnace. For not worshiping the statue of King Nebuchadnezzar.
Where is Daniel in all this as I am sure he did not bow down and worship the statue?
Why was Daniel not thrown in the furnace?

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Hi, @CharlesDavid! The Bible is silent on Daniel’s whereabouts or actions at this time, so anything we might say about the matter is going to be speculative at best. We do know by looking at Daniel’s actions and character throughout the parts of the biblical account in which he is present that, as you pointed out, Daniel probably did not bow down to the statue. My guess is that his friends were caught not bowing down to the statue, and he wasn’t.

Another possibility is that he may have gained favor with those who might have been present with him at the times they were supposed to be bowing down to the statue. While we know that he had jealous opposition during his position in the Persian empire, the Bible is quite silent on his status with others in the Babylonian empire. We only know that he had gained favor with his steward early on when he did not want to defile himself with the food from the king’s table.

Just a couple of thoughts for what they are worth. But as far as I can ascertain, there is no way for us to know the answer to this.

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Hello @charlesdavid!

Thank you for making me think a bit this morning! I really appreciate what Lindsay has to say. I think we would often be more benefited from concentrating on what the Bible does say rather than on what it doesn’t say. That being said…there might be a clue as to why exactly Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were singled out.

We see at the end of Daniel 2 that Daniel requested Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego to be appointed over the affairs off the province of Babylon. Then in Daniel 3:8 we see that “certain Chaldeans” brought the accusation against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego to Nebuchadnezzar citing their being Jews and authorities in the province of Babylon. It seems that there certain men had a bone to pick with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. They likely did not appreciate Jews having this kind of authority, and perhaps they had an unpleasant encounter with them. When given the opportunity, they specifically sought to bring attention to these three men. Since Daniel 2:49 says that Daniel remained at the king’s court, he may not have had encounters with these same men with the regularity that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego would have.

Also as Lindsay mentioned, we can assume from what is written about Daniel that he would have done the right thing in this situation as well. Perhaps he just didn’t have “certain” persons within his context of the king’s court who were looking for an opportunity to have him eliminated. Of course, all of this is speculation on my part!

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This is amazing I too was wondering where Daniel was since all four were together from the beginning. Your questions caused me to think deeper and search more for an answer.
In the last verse of chapter two
Also Daniel petitioned the king, and he set Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego over the affairs of the province of Babylon; but Daniel sat in the gate of the king. (A premier position)
Daniel 2:49 NKJV
Who would dare to accuse the Kings right hand man who showed him what no one else could. Based on Daniel’s prior integrity with God there is no reason to believe he bowed to the image.
The bible is full of little things like this but sometimes we just dont need to know little details.

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When I read Daniel, I thought it indicated that Daniel was in a different region than his friends at that time. I think re-reading it would help me. I see that I made the mistake of assuming.

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At first, I thought perhaps this was the case because of Daniel 2:49. However, I think that Daniel 3:2-3 casts a little bit of doubt on that theory. But once again, the Bible really only gives us so much information, so I doubt we’d be able to make a strong conclusion from any number of weak arguments.

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