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Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary


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the Chaldee name given by the king of Babylon's officer to Azariah, one of Daniel's companions, Daniel 1:7 . This name imports the servant of Nago, or Nego, which is supposed to signify the sun, or morning star, so called from its brightness. Abednego was thrown into a fiery furnace, at Babylon, with his two companions Shadrach and Meshach for refusing to adore the statue erected by the command of Nebuchadnezzar. God suffered them not to be injured by the flames; but made the whole to redound to his own glory, and the shame of the idols of Babylon. One like unto the Son of God, or a Divine person, probably the Angel of the Divine presence himself, appeared in the midst of them; and they came out of the furnace, which had been heated seven times hotter than usual, so completely preserved from the power of the flames, that not even "the smell of fire had passed upon them." This was an illustrious instance of the courageous and hallowed spirit of martyrdom; and the interposition was no doubt designed to encourage, the Jews while in captivity, living among idolaters, to hold fast their religion. It is an instance also of those gracious visitations to the old Heathen world, by which it was loudly called from its idolatries, and aroused to the acknowledgment of the true and only Jehovah, who, in various ways, "left not himself without witness" among them. A great temporary effect was produced by this and other miracles related in the book of Daniel; but the people relapsed again into idolatry, and justly brought upon themselves all those wasting judgments which in succession swept over the mightiest and most ancient states.

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Bibliography Information
Watson, Richard. Entry for 'Abednego'. Richard Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary. 1831-2.

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