Summary: When God speaks to us do we listen to Him or the world around us?

Daniel – Chapter 5c

A. Chapter 5 Outline

I. Belshazzar (5:1-4)

a. The Party (5:1)

b. The Preposterousness (5:2-3)

c. The Profanity (5:4)

II. The Lord (5:5-9)

a. Look At The Wall (5:5)

b. Look At The Weak King (5:6-7)

c. Look At The Wise Men (5:8-9)

III. The Queen Mother (5:10-12)

a. Her Ignorance (5:10)

b. Her Insight (5:11-12)

IV. Daniel (5:13-29)

a. Daniel’s Reward (5:13-16)

b. Daniel’s Refusal (5:17)

c. Daniel’s Rebuke (5:18-23)

d. Daniel’s Revelation (5:24-28)

e. Daniel’s Robing (5:29)

V. Darius (5:30-31)

a. The Slaying of The King (5: 30)

b. The Silver Chest Reigns (5:31)


III. The Queen Mother (5:10-12)

The queen mentioned her is thought to have been Nitocris, a wife of Nebuchadnezzar, and the grandmother of Belshazzar. She was the queen mother.

a. Her Ignorance (5:10)

The entire palace had heard about the commotion in the banquet hall and as the news reached the queen she went to offer her advice and comfort to Belshazzar. The first thing that she said seems to be a bit pointless – let not thy thoughts trouble thee, nor let thy counternance be changed.

Basically what she was saying was – don’t panic, everything will be ok…

b. Her Insight (5:11-12)

Verse 11

Her attitude didn’t match the seriousness of the situation, but here suggestion was a good one, “Get Daniel!” No doubt, as Nebuchadnezzar’s wife, she saw first hand the council and godly advice Daniel gave when he was called upon – he was the kings greatest advisor.

How sad then that Belshazzar did not think of Daniel. It would appear that he didn’t even know who Daniel was. The highest official in the kingdom, the wisest councillor in the empire and he has been forgotten. According to Verse 22 Belshazzar had heard of his grandfather’s dream and how Daniel had interpreted it.

Verse 12

The queen’s description of Daniel shows that his testimony didn’t go unnoticed. God had used this man to bring knowledge, and understanding, and interpretation of dreams, and now he would be called upon again.

IV. Daniel (5:13-29)

If Daniel was 16 when he was taken to Babylon in 605 B.C. and Babylon fell to the Medes and Persians in 539 B.C., then he was 82 years old when Belshazzar summoned him to the banqueting hall.

So many times in the Scripture you see God use people that we would consider “past it,” in age. However, true servants of the Lord never abandon their ministries but are always available to respond to God’s call. 2 Timonthy 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

a. Daniel’s Reward (5:13-16)

You can just picture the scene. Daniel walks into the banqueting hall and casts a glaring eye at the tables strewn with food, the floor strewn with drunks and the walls strewn with the dead, deaf, and dumb idols of Babylon. How things have changed over the years…

Then he spots something on the floor, there lying amongst the debris of the evening shenanigans is a harlot, and what is that in her hand, is it… could it really be… its is, it’s one of the sacred vessels from the temple of the Living God.

Then Daniel sees the message on the wall. There are the glowing letters written with God’s own hand. Could Daniel really read what was on the wall? Of course he could he had been reading God’s Word for almost 80 years.

This was not a new situation for Daniel to be in, he’d been here once or twice before; a revelation from God, a fearful and frustrated ruler, incompetent councillors and God’s servant to the rescue. He paid little attention the the king’s flattering speech, and he certainly had no use for the king’s generous offer.

b. Daniel’s Refusal (5:17)

No one who walked as close to God as Daniel did needed to be rewarded or bribed to deliver a message for God. A scarlet robe, a gold chain and third ruler – those things were worthless to a prophet who knew from the very beginning that Babylon’s fate would be sealed by the Persians and theirs by the Greeks. The God of Israel had already written the word “Bankrupt!” over all that Belshazzar had.

I would imagine that people are starting to sober up by this point of the evening. Daniel has the floor and the people are all ears, he does not pull any punches as he tells the king to keep his gifts – nobody had spoken to Belshazzar like this before. Daniel is in no hurry to interpret the writing; the king is going to get some preaching first.

c. Daniel’s Rebuke (5:18-23)

Daniel was respectful to the king but was not afraid to tell him the truth. From the very beginning of their lives in Babylon (Daniel 1), Daniel and his friends had always exercised humility and tact when dealing with the authorities, and because of this God blessed them Titus 2:8 Sound speech that cannot be condemned:

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