Daniel 5

1 King Belshazzar held a great feast for a thousand of his lords, and drank wine with them.

2 While he tasted the wine, Belshazzar commanded to bring the gold and silver vessels which Nebuchadnezzar his father had taken out of the Temple in Jerusalem. This way the king and his lords, his wives and his concubines, might drink from them.

3 Then they brought the gold vessels that were taken out of the Temple of the House of God that was at Jerusalem. The king and his lords, his wives and his concubines, drank from them.

4 They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, silver, copper, iron, wood, and of stone.

5 In the same hour the fingers of a man's hand appeared, and wrote above the lamp stand on the plaster of the wall of the king's palace. The king saw the part of the hand that wrote.

6 Then the king's countenance appearance changed in him. His thoughts troubled him. The joints of his loins were loosed, and his knees struck one against the other.

7 The king cried aloud to bring in the enchanters, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers. / The king spoke to the wise men of Babylon: »Whoever reads this writing, and shows me the interpretation of it will be clothed with purple, and have a chain of gold about his neck. He will be the third ruler in the kingdom«.

8 All the king’s wise men came. But they could not read the writing, nor make known to the king the interpretation.

9 King Belshazzar was greatly troubled, and his appearance changed. His lords were perplexed.

10 The queen came into the banquet hall. She said: »O king, may you live for a very long time: do not let your thoughts trouble you or change your countenance.

11 »There is a man in your kingdom who has the spirit of the holy gods. In your fathers day, light and understanding and wisdom, like the wisdom of the gods, were found in him. King Nebuchadnezzar, your father, made him master of the magicians, enchanters, Chaldeans, and soothsayers.

12 »Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar, has an excellent spirit, knowledge, and understanding for interpreting dreams, showing of dark sentences, and dissolving doubts. Let Daniel be called, and he will show the interpretation.«

13 Daniel was brought before the king. The king spoke to Daniel: »Are you that Daniel, one of the exiles 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 »The wise men and the enchanters, have been brought in before me to read this writing, and make known the interpretation of it. But they could not show the interpretation.

16 »I have heard that you can give interpretations and dissolve doubts. If you can read the writing and make the interpretation known to me you will be clothed with purple, and have a chain of gold about your neck, and will be the third ruler in the kingdom.«

17 Daniel answered the king: »Keep your gifts and give your rewards to another. I will read the writing to the king, and make known to him the interpretation.

18 »O you king, the Most High God gave Nebuchadnezzar your father the kingdom, and greatness, and glory, and majesty.

19 »Because of the greatness he gave him, all the peoples, nations, and languages trembled and feared before him. Whom he chose he killed and whom he chose he kept alive. Whom he chose he raised up, and whom he chose he put down.

20 »But when his heart was lifted up, and his spirit was hardened with pride he dealt proudly. He was deposed from his kingly throne and they took his glory from him:

21 »He was driven from the sons of men, and his heart was made like the beasts. His dwelling was with the wild donkeys. He was fed with grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven 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, O Belshazzar, have not humbled your heart, though you know all this.

23 »You lifted yourself up against the Lord of heaven. They have brought the vessels of his house before you and your lords, wives and concubines. They drank wine from them. You praise the gods of silver and gold, of copper, iron, wood, and stone, which you do not see, nor hear, nor know. You have not glorified the God whose hand holds your breath and life.

24 »Then the part of the hand was sent from before him, and this writing was inscribed.

25 »This is the writing that was inscribed: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, PARSIN.

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 Belshazzar commanded, 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. He was sixty-two years old.