The Handwriting on the Wall
51 Belshazzar the king made a great feast to a thousand of his lords, and drank wine before the thousand. 2 Belshazzar, while he tasted the wine, commanded to bring the golden and silver vessels which Nebuchadnezzar his father had taken out of the temple which was in Jerusalem; that the king and his lords, his wives and his concubines, might drink from them. 3 Then they brought the golden vessels that were taken out of the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the king and his lords, his wives and his concubines, drank from them. 4 They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone. 5 In the same hour came forth the fingers of a man’s hand, and wrote over against the lampstand on the plaster of the wall of the king’s palace: and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote. 6 Then the king’s face was changed in him, and his thoughts troubled him; and the joints of his thighs were loosened, and his knees struck one against another. 7 The king cried aloud to bring in the enchanters, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers. The king spoke and said to the wise men of Babylon, Whoever shall read this writing, and show me its interpretation, shall be clothed with purple, and have a chain of gold about his neck, and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom. 8 Then came in all the king’s wise men; but they could not read the writing, nor make known to the king the interpretation. 9 Then was king Belshazzar greatly troubled, and his face was changed in him, and his lords were perplexed.
10 Now the queen by reason of the words of the king and his lords came into the banquet house: the queen spoke and said, O king, live forever; don’t let your thoughts trouble you, nor let your face be changed. 11 There is a man in your kingdom, in whom is the spirit of the holy gods; and in the days of your father light and understanding and wisdom, like the wisdom of the gods, were found in him; and the king Nebuchadnezzar your father, the king, I say, your father, made him master of the magicians, enchanters, Chaldeans, and soothsayers; 12 because an excellent spirit, and knowledge, and understanding, interpreting of dreams, and showing of dark sentences, and dissolving of doubts, were found in the same Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar. Now let Daniel be called, and he will show the interpretation. 13 Then was Daniel brought in before the king. The king spoke and said to Daniel, Are you that Daniel, who are of the children of the captivity of Judah, whom the king my father brought out of Judah? 14 I have heard of you, that the spirit of the gods is in you, and that light and understanding and excellent wisdom are found in you. 15 Now the wise men, the enchanters, have been brought in before me, that they should read this writing, and make known to me its interpretation; but they could not show the interpretation of the thing. 16 But I have heard of you, that you can give interpretations, and dissolve doubts; now if you can read the writing, and make known to me its interpretation, you shall be clothed with purple, and have a chain of gold about your neck, and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom. 17 Then Daniel answered before the king, Let your gifts be to yourself, and give your rewards to another; nevertheless I will read the writing to the king, and make known to him the interpretation. 18 You, king, the Most High God gave Nebuchadnezzar your father the kingdom, and greatness, and glory, and majesty: 19 and because of the greatness that he gave him, all the peoples, nations, and languages trembled and feared before him: whom he would he killed, and whom he would he kept alive; and whom he would he raised up, and whom he would he put down. 20 But when his heart was lifted up, and his spirit was hardened so that he dealt proudly, he was deposed from his kingly throne, and they took his glory from him: 21 and he was driven from the sons of men, and his heart was made like the animals’, and his dwelling was with the wild donkeys; he was fed with grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of the sky; until he knew that the Most High God rules in the kingdom of men, and that he sets up over it whomever he will. 22 You, his son, Belshazzar, have not humbled your heart, though you knew all this, 23 but have lifted up yourself against the Lord of heaven; and they have brought the vessels of his house before you, and you and your lords, your wives and your concubines, have drunk wine from them; and you have praised the gods of silver and gold, of brass, iron, wood, and stone, which don’t see, nor hear, nor know; and the God in whose hand your breath is, and whose are all your ways, you have not glorified. 24 Then was the part of the hand sent from before him, and this writing was inscribed. 25 This is the writing that was inscribed: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN. 26 This is the interpretation of the thing: MENE; God has numbered your kingdom, and brought it to an end; 27 TEKEL; you are weighed in the balances, and are found wanting. 28 PERES; your kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians. 29 Then commanded Belshazzar, and they clothed Daniel with purple, and put a chain of gold about his neck, and made proclamation concerning him, that he should be the third ruler in the kingdom.
30 In that night Belshazzar the Chaldean King was slain. 31 Darius the Mede received the kingdom, being about sixty-two years old.
Daniel in the Lions' Den
61 It pleased Darius to set over the kingdom one hundred twenty satraps, who should be throughout the whole kingdom; 2 and over them three presidents, of whom Daniel was one; that these satraps might give account to them, and that the king should have no damage. 3 Then this Daniel was distinguished above the presidents and the satraps, because an excellent spirit was in him; and the king thought to set him over the whole realm. 4 Then the presidents and the satraps sought to find occasion against Daniel as touching the kingdom; but they could find no occasion nor fault, because he was faithful, neither was there any error or fault found in him. 5 Then said these men, We shall not find any occasion against this Daniel, except we find it against him concerning the law of his God.
6 Then these presidents and satraps assembled together to the king, and said thus to him, King Darius, live forever. 7 All the presidents of the kingdom, the deputies and the satraps, the counselors and the governors, have consulted together to establish a royal statute, and to make a strong decree, that whoever shall ask a petition of any god or man for thirty days, except of you, O king, he shall be cast into the den of lions. 8 Now, O king, establish the decree, and sign the writing, that it not be changed, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which doesn’t alter. 9 Therefore king Darius signed the writing and the decree. 10 When Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house (now his windows were open in his chamber toward Jerusalem) and he kneeled on his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did before.
11 Then these men assembled together, and found Daniel making petition and supplication before his God. 12 Then they came near, and spoke before the king concerning the king’s decree: Haven’t you signed an decree, that every man who shall make petition to any god or man within thirty days, except to you, O king, shall be cast into the den of lions? The king answered, The thing is true, according to the law of the Medes and Persians, which doesn’t alter. 13 Then answered they and said before the king, That Daniel, who is of the children of the captivity of Judah, doesn’t respect you, O king, nor the decree that you have signed, but makes his petition three times a day. 14 Then the king, when he heard these words, was sore displeased, and set his heart on Daniel to deliver him; and he labored until the going down of the sun to rescue him. 15 Then these men assembled together to the king, and said to the king, Know, O king, that it is a law of the Medes and Persians, that no decree nor statute which the king establishes may be changed. 16 Then the king commanded, and they brought Daniel, and cast him into the den of lions. Now the king spoke and said to Daniel, Your God whom you serve continually, he will deliver you. 17 A stone was brought, and laid on the mouth of the den; and the king sealed it with his own signet, and with the signet of his lords; that nothing might be changed concerning Daniel.
18 Then the king went to his palace, and passed the night fasting; neither were instruments of music brought before him: and his sleep fled from him. 19 Then the king arose very early in the morning, and went in haste to the den of lions. 20 When he came near to the den to Daniel, he cried with a lamentable voice; the king spoke and said to Daniel, Daniel, servant of the living God, is your God, whom you serve continually, able to deliver you from the lions? 21 Then said Daniel to the king, O king, live forever. 22 My God has sent his angel, and has shut the lions’ mouths, and they have not hurt me; because as before him innocence was found in me; and also before you, O king, have I done no hurt. 23 Then was the king exceeding glad, and commanded that they should take Daniel up out of the den. So Daniel was taken up out of the den, and no manner of hurt was found on him, because he had trusted in his God. 24 The king commanded, and they brought those men who had accused Daniel, and they cast them into the den of lions, them, their children, and their wives; and the lions had the mastery of them, and broke all their bones in pieces, before they came to the bottom of the den.
25 Then king Darius wrote to all the peoples, nations, and languages, who dwell in all the earth: Peace be multiplied to you. 26 I make a decree, that in all the dominion of my kingdom men tremble and fear before the God of Daniel; for he is the living God, and steadfast forever, His kingdom that which shall not be destroyed; and his dominion shall be even to the end. 27 He delivers and rescues, and he works signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions. 28 So this Daniel prospered in the reign of Darius, and in the reign of Cyrus the Persian.