And in the second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar Nebuchadnezzar dreamed dreams, wherewith his spirit was troubled, and his sleep brake from him.
That is, the second according to the Babylonian computation, but the fourth according to that of the Jews, who reckon from the time he was associated with his father.
Then the king commanded to call the magicians, and the astrologers, and the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans, for to shew the king his dreams. So they came and stood before the king.
And the king said unto them, I have dreamed a dream, and my spirit was troubled to know the dream.
Then spake the Chaldeans to the king in Syriack, O king, live for ever: tell thy servants the dream, and we will shew the interpretation.
Aramith, "Aramean," the language of Aram or Syria; a general term comprehending both the Chaldee and Syriac, the latter merely differing from the former as a dialect, and being written in a different character. With the following words the Chaldee part of Daniel commences; and is continued to the end of the seventh chapter.
The king answered and said to the Chaldeans, The thing is gone from me: if ye will not make known unto me the dream, with the interpretation thereof, ye shall be cut in pieces, and your houses shall be made a dunghill.
This was unreasonable, arbitrary, and tyrannical in the extreme; but, in the course of God's providence, it was overruled to serve the most important purpose.
cut in pieces
Chal. made pieces. made.
But if ye shew the dream, and the interpretation thereof, ye shall receive of me gifts and rewards and great honour: therefore shew me the dream, and the interpretation thereof.
They answered again and said, Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will shew the interpretation of it.
The king answered and said, I know of certainty that ye would gain the time, because ye see the thing is gone from me.
But if ye will not make known unto me the dream, there is but one decree for you: for ye have prepared lying and corrupt words to speak before me, till the time be changed: therefore tell me the dream, and I shall know that ye can shew me the interpretation thereof.
And it is a rare thing that the king requireth, and there is none other that can shew it before the king, except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh.
This was their decision: and when the living and true God, who indeed condescends to dwell with men, and who alone could reveal the dream and the secrets contained in it, actually made it known to Daniel, he evinced the infinite difference between Jehovah and his prophets, and the idols and magicians of Babylon.
For this cause the king was angry and very furious, and commanded to destroy all the wise men of Babylon.
And the decree went forth that the wise men should be slain; and they sought Daniel and his fellows to be slain.
Then Daniel answered with counsel and wisdom to Arioch the captain of the king's guard, which was gone forth to slay the wise men of Babylon:
Chal. returned. with.
captain of the king's guard
or, chief marshall. Chal. chief of the executioners, or slaughter-men.
He answered and said to Arioch the king's captain, Why is the decree so hasty from the king? Then Arioch made the thing known to Daniel.
Then Daniel went in, and desired of the king that he would give him time, and that he would shew the king the interpretation.
Then Daniel went to his house, and made the thing known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions:
That they would desire mercies of the God of heaven concerning this secret; that Daniel and his fellows should not perish with the rest of the wise men of Babylon.
of the God of heaven
Chal. from before God. Daniel and his fellows should not perish. or, they should not destroy Daniel, etc.
Then was the secret revealed unto Daniel in a night vision. Then Daniel blessed the God of heaven.
Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his:
And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding:
He revealeth the deep and secret things: he knoweth what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him.
I thank thee, and praise thee, O thou God of my fathers, who hast given me wisdom and might, and hast made known unto me now what we desired of thee: for thou hast now made known unto us the king's matter.
Therefore Daniel went in unto Arioch, whom the king had ordained to destroy the wise men of Babylon: he went and said thus unto him; Destroy not the wise men of Babylon: bring me in before the king, and I will shew unto the king the interpretation.
Then Arioch brought in Daniel before the king in haste, and said thus unto him, I have found a man of the captives of Judah, that will make known unto the king the interpretation.
Chal. That I have. captives of Judah. Chal. children of the captivity of Judah.
The king answered and said to Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar, Art thou able to make known unto me the dream which I have seen, and the interpretation thereof?
Daniel answered in the presence of the king, and said, The secret which the king hath demanded cannot the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, the soothsayers, shew unto the king;
But there is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets, and maketh known to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days. Thy dream, and the visions of thy head upon thy bed, are these;
Chal. hath made known. in the.
As for thee, O king, thy thoughts came into thy mind upon thy bed, what should come to pass hereafter: and he that revealeth secrets maketh known to thee what shall come to pass.
came into thy mind
Chal. came up.
But as for me, this secret is not revealed to me for any wisdom that I have more than any living, but for their sakes that shall make known the interpretation to the king, and that thou mightest know the thoughts of thy heart.
their sakes that shall make known the interpretation to the king
or, the intent that the interpretation may be made known to the king. and.
Thou, O king, sawest, and behold a great image. This great image, whose brightness was excellent, stood before thee; and the form thereof was terrible.
Chal. wast seeing. and the.
This image's head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass,
His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay.
Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces.
or, which was not in hands.
Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth.
This is the dream; and we will tell the interpretation thereof before the king.
Thou, O king, art a king of kings: for the God of heaven hath given thee a kingdom, power, and strength, and glory.
And wheresoever the children of men dwell, the beasts of the field and the fowls of the heaven hath he given into thine hand, and hath made thee ruler over them all. Thou art this head of gold.
The Chaldean monarchy, over which Nebuchadnezzar was the only king of note; in whose time it extended over Chaldea, Assyria, Arabia, Syria, Egypt, and Libya: the head of gold represented its immense riches.
And after thee shall arise another kingdom inferior to thee, and another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all the earth.
The empire of the Medes and Persians, whose union was denoted by the breast and two arms of silver; and which was established on the ruins of that of the Chaldeans on the capture of Babylon by Cyrus, B.C. 538.
The empire of the Macedonians, or "brazen-coated Greeks," aptly denoted by the belly and thighs of brass, founded by Alexander the Great, who terminated the Persian monarchy by the overthrow of Darius Codomanus at Arbela, B.C. 331
And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron: forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all things: and as iron that breaketh all these, shall it break in pieces and bruise.
The Roman empire, which comprised nearly the whole world.
And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters' clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay.
And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken.
And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay.
one to another
Chal. this with this. even. The Roman empire became weakened by a mixture of barbarous nations, by the incursions of whom it was torn asunder about the fourth century after Christ, and at length divided into ten kingdoms, answering to the ten toes of the image.
And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.
in the days
Chal. in their days. That is, in the days of one of these kingdoms, (see Ru 1:1,) i.e, the Roman; in which the "God of heaven set up" the spiritual kingdom of the Messiah, which shall yet "become a great mountain, and fill the whole earth."
which shall never
Chal. kingdom thereof. break.
Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great God hath made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter: and the dream is certain, and the interpretation thereof sure.
or, which was not in hands.
Chal. after this.
Then the king Nebuchadnezzar fell upon his face, and worshipped Daniel, and commanded that they should offer an oblation and sweet odours unto him.
The king answered unto Daniel, and said, Of a truth it is, that your God is a God of gods, and a Lord of kings, and a revealer of secrets, seeing thou couldest reveal this secret.
Then the king made Daniel a great man, and gave him many great gifts, and made him ruler over the whole province of Babylon, and chief of the governors over all the wise men of Babylon.
Then Daniel requested of the king, and he set Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, over the affairs of the province of Babylon: but Daniel sat in the gate of the king.