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Daniel 2 New Life Version (NLV)

Nebuchadnezzar’s Dream

In the second year that Nebuchadnezzar was king, he had a dream. His spirit was troubled and he could not sleep. Then the king called for the wonder-workers, those who used secret ways, those who learned from stars, to tell the king what he had dreamed. So they came in and stood in front of the king. The king said to them, “I had a dream that troubles me, and I want to know what the dream means.”

Then those who learn from stars said to the king in the Aramaic language, “O king, live forever! Tell the dream to your servants, and we will tell you what it means.” The king answered, saying, “My word is sure. If you do not tell me what my dream was and what it means, you will be torn apart and your houses will be laid waste. But if you tell me the dream and what it means, I will give you gifts and riches and great honor. So tell me the dream and what it means.” They answered the king a second time, saying, “Let the king tell the dream to his servants, and we will tell you what it means.” The king said, “I am sure that you are trying to get more time, because you see that my word is sure. You know that if you do not tell me what I dreamed, there is only one penalty for you. You have agreed among yourselves to keep telling me lies until things change. So tell me the dream. Then I will know that you can tell me what it means.” 10 Those who learn from stars answered the king and said, “There is not a man on earth who can do this for the king. For no great king or ruler has ever asked anything like this of any wonder-worker or one who learns from stars. 11 What the king asks is too hard. No one can do it for you except the gods, who do not live among men.” 12 Because of this the king became very angry and said that all the wise men of Babylon must be destroyed. 13 So the law was sent out that the wise men must be killed. They looked for Daniel and his friends, to kill them also.

God Shows Daniel the Meaning of the Dream

14 Then Daniel spoke with wisdom and understanding to Arioch, the captain of the soldiers who watched over the king, who had gone out to kill the wise men of Babylon. 15 He said to Arioch, the king’s captain, “Why is the king’s law so hard?” Then Arioch told him what had happened. 16 So Daniel went in and asked the king for time, so that he could tell the king what the dream meant.

17 Then Daniel went to his house and told his friends, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah, what had happened. 18 He told them to ask for loving-pity from the God of heaven about this secret, so that Daniel and his friends might not be killed with the other wise men of Babylon. 19 Then the secret was made known to Daniel in a special dream during the night. He gave honor and thanks to the God of heaven. 20 Daniel said, “Let the name of God be honored forever and ever, for wisdom and power belong to Him. 21 He changes the times and the years. He takes kings away, and puts kings in power. He gives wisdom to wise men and much learning to men of understanding. 22 He makes known secret and hidden things. He knows what is in the darkness. Light is with Him. 23 I give thanks and praise to You, O God of my fathers. For You have given me wisdom and power. Even now You have made known what we asked of You. You have made the king’s dream known to us.”

Daniel Tells the Meaning to the King

24 So Daniel went in to Arioch, whom the king had told to kill the wise men of Babylon. He went and said to him, “Do not kill the wise men of Babylon! Take me to the king, and I will tell him what his dream means.”

25 Then Arioch brought Daniel to the king in a hurry, and said to him, “I have found a man among those brought out of Judah who can tell the king the meaning of his dream!” 26 The king said to Daniel (also called Belteshazzar), “Are you able to tell me the dream I had, and what it means?” 27 Daniel answered the king and said, “No wise men, wonder-workers, or men who use secret ways can make this dream known to the king. 28 But there is a God in heaven who makes secrets known. And He has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what will happen in the future. This was the special dream you had while you were on your bed. 29 O king, while on your bed your thoughts turned to what would happen in the future. And He Who makes secrets known has let you know what will happen. 30 But this secret has not been made known to me because I am wiser than any other living man. It was made known to me so that I can make it known to the king, and that you may understand the thoughts of your mind.

31 “O king, you were looking and saw a great object. The object was large and very bright, and it was standing in front of you. It filled you with fear and wonder as you looked at it. 32 The object’s head was made of fine gold. Its breast and arms were made of silver. Its stomach and thighs were made of brass. 33 Its legs were made of iron, and its feet were part iron and part clay. 34 While you were watching, a rock was cut out, but not by human hands. It fell and hit the large object on its feet of iron and clay, and crushed them. 35 Then the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver and the gold were broken to pieces at the same time and became like dust on the grain-floor in the summer. The wind carried the dust away so nothing was to be found. But the stone that hit the large object became a large mountain and filled the whole earth.

36 “This was the dream. Now we will tell the king what it means. 37 You, O king, are the king of kings. The God of heaven has given you the nation, the power, the strength, and the honor. 38 In every place where people live, or the animals of the field, or the birds of the air, He has given them to you and has caused you to rule over them all. You are the head of gold. 39 After you there will be another nation that is not as great as yours. A third nation of brass will come, which will rule over all the earth. 40 Then there will be a fourth nation, as strong as iron. Iron crushes and breaks all things. So, like iron breaks things to pieces, this nation will crush and break all the others. 41 Just as you saw the feet and toes made of part clay and part iron, it will be a divided nation. But it will have some of the strength of iron, just as you saw the iron mixed with the clay. 42 As the toes of the feet were made of part iron and part clay, so some of the nation will be strong and part of it will be weak. 43 As you saw the iron mixed with clay, they will try to join with one another. But they will not stay together any more than iron mixes with clay. 44 In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a nation which will never be destroyed. And it will never be taken by another people. It will crush and put an end to all these nations, but it will last forever. 45 You saw how a stone was cut out of the mountain by no human hands, and how it crushed the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold. The great God has shown the king what will happen in the future. The dream is true. And I have given you its true meaning.”

Daniel Becomes Ruler of Babylon

46 Then King Nebuchadnezzar fell on his face and gave honor to Daniel. He had a gift and special perfume brought to him. 47 The king said to Daniel, “For sure your God is God of gods and Lord of kings, and He makes hidden things known. For you have been able to make known this secret.” 48 Then the king gave Daniel much power and gave him many great gifts. He made him ruler over the whole land of Babylon and the head of all the wise men of Babylon. 49 And Daniel asked the king to put Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego as leaders over the land of Babylon, while Daniel stayed near the king.

New Life Version (NLV)

Copyright © 1969, 2003 by Barbour Publishing, Inc.

Daniel 2 New International Version (NIV)

Nebuchadnezzar’s Dream

In the second year of his reign, Nebuchadnezzar had dreams; his mind was troubled and he could not sleep. So the king summoned the magicians, enchanters, sorcerers and astrologers[a] to tell him what he had dreamed. When they came in and stood before the king, he said to them, “I have had a dream that troubles me and I want to know what it means.[b]

Then the astrologers answered the king,[c] “May the king live forever! Tell your servants the dream, and we will interpret it.”

The king replied to the astrologers, “This is what I have firmly decided: If you do not tell me what my dream was and interpret it, I will have you cut into pieces and your houses turned into piles of rubble. But if you tell me the dream and explain it, you will receive from me gifts and rewards and great honor. So tell me the dream and interpret it for me.”

Once more they replied, “Let the king tell his servants the dream, and we will interpret it.”

Then the king answered, “I am certain that you are trying to gain time, because you realize that this is what I have firmly decided: If you do not tell me the dream, there is only one penalty for you. You have conspired to tell me misleading and wicked things, hoping the situation will change. So then, tell me the dream, and I will know that you can interpret it for me.”

10 The astrologers answered the king, “There is no one on earth who can do what the king asks! No king, however great and mighty, has ever asked such a thing of any magician or enchanter or astrologer. 11 What the king asks is too difficult. No one can reveal it to the king except the gods, and they do not live among humans.”

12 This made the king so angry and furious that he ordered the execution of all the wise men of Babylon. 13 So the decree was issued to put the wise men to death, and men were sent to look for Daniel and his friends to put them to death.

14 When Arioch, the commander of the king’s guard, had gone out to put to death the wise men of Babylon, Daniel spoke to him with wisdom and tact. 15 He asked the king’s officer, “Why did the king issue such a harsh decree?” Arioch then explained the matter to Daniel. 16 At this, Daniel went in to the king and asked for time, so that he might interpret the dream for him.

17 Then Daniel returned to his house and explained the matter to his friends Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. 18 He urged them to plead for mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery, so that he and his friends might not be executed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. 19 During the night the mystery was revealed to Daniel in a vision. Then Daniel praised the God of heaven 20 and said:

“Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever;
    wisdom and power are his.
21 He changes times and seasons;
    he deposes kings and raises up others.
He gives wisdom to the wise
    and knowledge to the discerning.
22 He reveals deep and hidden things;
    he knows what lies in darkness,
    and light dwells with him.
23 I thank and praise you, God of my ancestors:
    You have given me wisdom and power,
you have made known to me what we asked of you,
    you have made known to us the dream of the king.

Daniel Interprets the Dream

24 Then Daniel went to Arioch, whom the king had appointed to execute the wise men of Babylon, and said to him, “Do not execute the wise men of Babylon. Take me to the king, and I will interpret his dream for him.”

25 Arioch took Daniel to the king at once and said, “I have found a man among the exiles from Judah who can tell the king what his dream means.”

26 The king asked Daniel (also called Belteshazzar), “Are you able to tell me what I saw in my dream and interpret it?”

27 Daniel replied, “No wise man, enchanter, magician or diviner can explain to the king the mystery he has asked about, 28 but there is a God in heaven who reveals mysteries. He has shown King Nebuchadnezzar what will happen in days to come. Your dream and the visions that passed through your mind as you were lying in bed are these:

29 “As Your Majesty was lying there, your mind turned to things to come, and the revealer of mysteries showed you what is going to happen. 30 As for me, this mystery has been revealed to me, not because I have greater wisdom than anyone else alive, but so that Your Majesty may know the interpretation and that you may understand what went through your mind.

31 “Your Majesty looked, and there before you stood a large statue—an enormous, dazzling statue, awesome in appearance. 32 The head of the statue was made of pure gold, its chest and arms of silver, its belly and thighs of bronze, 33 its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of baked clay. 34 While you were watching, a rock was cut out, but not by human hands. It struck the statue on its feet of iron and clay and smashed them. 35 Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver and the gold were all broken to pieces and became like chaff on a threshing floor in the summer. The wind swept them away without leaving a trace. But the rock that struck the statue became a huge mountain and filled the whole earth.

36 “This was the dream, and now we will interpret it to the king. 37 Your Majesty, you are the king of kings. The God of heaven has given you dominion and power and might and glory; 38 in your hands he has placed all mankind and the beasts of the field and the birds in the sky. Wherever they live, he has made you ruler over them all. You are that head of gold.

39 “After you, another kingdom will arise, inferior to yours. Next, a third kingdom, one of bronze, will rule over the whole earth. 40 Finally, there will be a fourth kingdom, strong as iron—for iron breaks and smashes everything—and as iron breaks things to pieces, so it will crush and break all the others. 41 Just as you saw that the feet and toes were partly of baked clay and partly of iron, so this will be a divided kingdom; yet it will have some of the strength of iron in it, even as you saw iron mixed with clay. 42 As the toes were partly iron and partly clay, so this kingdom will be partly strong and partly brittle. 43 And just as you saw the iron mixed with baked clay, so the people will be a mixture and will not remain united, any more than iron mixes with clay.

44 “In the time of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever. 45 This is the meaning of the vision of the rock cut out of a mountain, but not by human hands—a rock that broke the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver and the gold to pieces.

“The great God has shown the king what will take place in the future. The dream is true and its interpretation is trustworthy.”

46 Then King Nebuchadnezzar fell prostrate before Daniel and paid him honor and ordered that an offering and incense be presented to him. 47 The king said to Daniel, “Surely your God is the God of gods and the Lord of kings and a revealer of mysteries, for you were able to reveal this mystery.

48 Then the king placed Daniel in a high position and lavished many gifts on him. He made him ruler over the entire province of Babylon and placed him in charge of all its wise men. 49 Moreover, at Daniel’s request the king appointed Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego administrators over the province of Babylon, while Daniel himself remained at the royal court.

Footnotes:

  1. Daniel 2:2 Or Chaldeans; also in verses 4, 5 and 10
  2. Daniel 2:3 Or was
  3. Daniel 2:4 At this point the Hebrew text has in Aramaic, indicating that the text from here through the end of chapter 7 is in Aramaic.
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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