Daniel 5:23

23. But hast lifted up thyself against the Lord of heaven; and they have brought the vessels of his house before thee, and thou and thy lords, thy wives and thy concubines, have drunk wine in them; and thou hast praised the gods of silver, and gold, of brass, iron, wood, and stone, which see not, nor hear, nor know: and the God in whose hand thy breath is, and whose are all thy ways, hast thou not glorified.

23. Et contra Dominum coeli to extulisti, et vasa domus ejus, 1 protulerunt in conspectum tuum: et tu, et proceres tui, uxores tuae, 2 et concubinae tuae vinum bibistis in illis: et deos argenti, hoc est, argenteos, et aureos, aeneos, ferreos, ligneos, et la-pideos, qui non vident, et non audiunt, et non intelligunt, laudasti: et Deum, cui est in manu ejus anima tua, 3 et eujus 4 omnia tua, non honorasti.


The Prophet continues his own sentence, and confirms what I have said, namely, King Belshazzar was intractable and willfully blind to God's judgment. For thou hast raised thyself, says he, against the Lord of heaven. If he had raised himself thus insolently against men, his sin would be worthy of punishment; but when he had provoked God on purpose, this arrogance neither could nor ought to be borne. Again, therefore, the Prophet increases the guilt of the king's pride by saying, he raised himself against the King of heaven. He also expresses the manner of his doing so, by commanding the vessels of the temple to be brought to sight; he drank from them. This profanation was an indecent sacrilege, but Belshazzar was not content with that indignity; he used these vessels for luxury and foul debauchery, abusing them in the company of concubines and abandoned women; and added a yet greater reproach against God, in praising his gods of silver and gold, brass and iron, wood and stone, which cannot feel. This had not been said previously; but since Daniel here sustains the character of a teacher, he does not relate the events so shortly as at first. When he said at the beginning of this chapter, Belshazzar celebrated that impure banquet, he spoke historically; but he now executes, as I have said, the office of a teacher. Thou, says he, hast praised the gods made of corruptible material, who neither see, nor hear, nor understand; but thou hast defrauded the living God of his honor, in whose hand is thy life, on which thou dependest, and whence all in which thou boastest proceeds. Because thou hast so despised the living God, who had been so gracious unto thee, this ingratitude was both base and shameful. We see, therefore, how severely the Prophet reproves the impious tyrant of sacrilege, and mad rashness, and foul ingratitude towards God. I pass over these things lightly, since they have been treated elsewhere. It now follows, --

1 That is, of his temple. -- Calvin.

2 Or, thy wife. -- Calvin.

3 That is, in whose hand is thy life. -- Calvin.

4 In whose power are all things. -- Calvin.