Daniel 5New Life Version (NLV)
Belshazzar’s Special Supper
5 King Belshazzar gave a special supper for a thousand of his important men, and drank wine with them. 2 When Belshazzar tasted the wine, he had all the gold and silver cups brought which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the Lord’s house in Jerusalem. The king sent for them so that he and his important men and all his wives could drink from them. 3 So they brought the gold cups that had been taken from the house of God in Jerusalem. And the king and his important men and all his wives drank from them. 4 They drank wine and praised the gods of gold and silver, brass, iron, wood, and stone.
5 All at once the fingers of a man’s hand were seen writing on the wall near the lamp-stand of the king’s house. And the king saw the back of the hand as it wrote. 6 Then the king’s face turned white, and his thoughts turned to fear. His legs became weak and his knees began shaking. 7 The king called in a loud voice for the wonder-workers, the men who learned from stars and those who used their secret ways. He said to the wise men of Babylon, “Any man who can read this writing and tell me what it means will be dressed with purple clothing and have a chain of gold around his neck. And he will be the third in power in the nation.” 8 Then all the king’s wise men came in. But they could not read the writing or tell the king what it meant. 9 Then King Belshazzar was very afraid. His face lost even more of its color, and his important men did not know what to do.
10 The queen heard the words of the king and his men, and came into the room where they were eating. She said, “O king, live forever! Do not let your thoughts make you afraid or your face turn white. 11 There is a man in your nation who has the spirit of the holy gods in him. In your father’s time light and understanding and wisdom, like the wisdom of the gods, were found in him. And King Nebuchadnezzar, your father, made him the head of the wonder-workers, the men who learned from stars, and those who use their secret ways. 12 This was because a special spirit was found in this Daniel whom the king called Belteshazzar. He had much learning and understanding to tell the meaning of dreams and secrets and to give answers to problems. Call for Daniel, and he will tell you what this means.”
Daniel Tells What the Writing Means
13 So Daniel was brought to the king. And the king said to him, “Are you that Daniel who is one of the people whom my father the king brought from Judah? 14 I have heard that the spirit of the gods is in you. Light and understanding and special wisdom have been found in you also. 15 The wise men and wonder-workers were brought in to me so that they might read this writing and tell me what it means. But they could not tell me its meaning. 16 Now I have heard that you are able to tell the meaning of such things and give answers to hard problems. If you are able to read the writing and tell me what it means, you will be dressed in purple and wear a chain of gold around your neck. And you will be the third in power in the nation.”
17 Then Daniel answered the king, saying, “Keep your gifts for yourself, or give them to someone else. But I will read the writing to the king and tell him what it means. 18 O king, the Most High made your father Nebuchadnezzar king, and gave him greatness, honor, and power. 19 Because of the greatness He gave to him, all the people of every nation and language shook in fear in front of him. He killed whomever he wanted. And he let live whomever he wanted. He gave honor to whomever he wanted. And he put down whomever he wanted. 20 But when his heart and spirit became proud and he acted in pride, he was taken from his throne and his greatness was taken from him. 21 He was driven away from people, and his mind became like that of an animal. He lived with the wild donkeys. He ate grass like cattle, and his body became wet with the water from heaven. It was like this for him until he understood that the Most High God is ruler over the nation of all men, and that He lets whomever He wants rule it. 22 Yet you, his son Belshazzar, have not put away the pride from your heart, even though you knew all this. 23 You have honored yourself more than the Lord of heaven. The cups of His house have been brought to you. And you and your important men and all your wives have been drinking wine from them. You have praised the gods of silver, gold, brass, iron, wood, and stone, which do not see, hear or understand. But you have not honored the God Who holds your life and your ways in His hand. 24 So the hand was sent from Him to write on your wall. 25 “This is what was written: ‘MENE, MENE, TEKEL, and PARSIN.’ 26 And this is what it means: ‘MENE’ means that God has numbered the days of your rule and has brought it to an end. 27 ‘TEKEL’ means that you have been weighed and found to be too light. 28 ‘PERES’ means that your nation has been divided and given to the Medes and Persians.”
29 Then Belshazzar had them dress Daniel in purple and put a chain of gold around his neck. And he made it known that Daniel was the third most powerful ruler in the nation.
Belshazzar Is Killed
30 That very night Belshazzar the king of Babylon was killed. 31 So Darius the Mede became the king when he was sixty-two years old.