Do Not Fear

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.

You, king, the Most High God gave Nebuchadnezzar your father the kingdom, and greatness, and glory, and majesty: 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. 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: 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.

You, his son, Belshazzar, have not humbled your heart, though you knew all this, 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.

Then was the part of the hand sent from before him, and this writing was inscribed. This is the writing that was inscribed: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN. This is the interpretation of the thing: MENE; God has numbered your kingdom, and brought it to an end; TEKEL; you are weighed in the balances, and are found wanting. PERES; your kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.

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.

In that night Belshazzar the Chaldean King was slain. Darius the Mede received the kingdom, being about sixty-two years old. – Daniel 5:17-31 (WEB)

Don’t be afraid of those who kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul. – Matthew 10:28 (WEB)

In the fifth chapter of Daniel, we see Daniel once again demonstrating his courage. This time, he must give the king bad news, knowing the king could get very angry and have him thrown into prison or into the lions’ den.

Daniel recounts to the king the history of Babylon and points out that King Belshazzar has set himself against God. Then, he interprets the writing on the wall. He tells Belshazzar that God has ended his kingdom and given it to the Medes and Persians. This is very bad news for Belshazzar, but Daniel tells him everything, and the king rewards him.

Why was Daniel so courageous? God had proven his faithfulness to Daniel through his years in Babylon. Daniel knew God would not fail to protect him now. As Daniel lived out his faith, it became stronger. God’s faithfulness through the years emboldened Daniel, for he knew that God would always be with him. More than a dozen times in the books of the Law God tells the people not to fear. Daniel got the message. Have we?

O Lord, help us to be courageous in doing your will, for you did not give us a spirit of timidity. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Copyright © 2008, Star Ferdinand.


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