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Nebuchadnezzar Praises God

34 When that period was over, I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my reason returned to me.

I blessed the Most High,

and praised and honored the one who lives forever.

For his sovereignty is an everlasting sovereignty,

and his kingdom endures from generation to generation.

35

All the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing,

and he does what he wills with the host of heaven

and the inhabitants of the earth.

There is no one who can stay his hand

or say to him, “What are you doing?”

36 At that time my reason returned to me; and my majesty and splendor were restored to me for the glory of my kingdom. My counselors and my lords sought me out, I was re-established over my kingdom, and still more greatness was added to me. 37Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven,

for all his works are truth,

and his ways are justice;

and he is able to bring low

those who walk in pride.

 


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34. lifted up mine eyes unto heaven—whence the "voice" had issued (Da 4:31) at the beginning of his visitation. Sudden mental derangement often has the effect of annihilating the whole interval, so that, when reason returns, the patient remembers only the event that immediately preceded his insanity. Nebuchadnezzar's looking up towards heaven was the first symptom of his "understanding" having "returned." Before, like the beasts, his eyes had been downward to the earth. Now, like Jonah's (Jon 2:1, 2, 4) out of the fish's belly, they are lifted up to heaven in prayer. He turns to Him that smiteth him (Isa 9:13), with the faint glimmer of reason left to him, and owns God's justice in punishing him.

praised … him—Praise is a sure sign of a soul spiritually healed (Ps 116:12, 14; Mr 5:15, 18, 19).

I … honoured him—implying that the cause of his chastisement was that he had before robbed God of His honor.

everlasting dominion—not temporary or mutable, as a human king's dominion.

35. all … as nothing—(Isa 40:15, 17).

according to his will in … heaven—(Ps 115:3; 135:6; Mt 6:10; Eph 1:11).

army—the heavenly hosts, angels and starry orbs (compare Isa 24:21).

none … stay his hand—literally, "strike His hand." Image from striking the hand of another, to check him in doing anything (Isa 43:13; 45:9).

What doest thou—(Job 9:12; Ro 9:20).

36. An inscription in the East India Company's Museum is read as describing the period of Nebuchadnezzar's insanity [G. V. Smith]. In the so-called standard inscription read by Sir H. Rawlinson, Nebuchadnezzar relates that during four (?) years he ceased to lay out buildings, or to furnish with victims Merodach's altar, or to clear out the canals for irrigation. No other instance in the cuneiform inscriptions occurs of a king recording his own inaction.

my counsellors … sought unto me—desired to have me, as formerly, to be their head, wearied with the anarchy which prevailed in my absence (compare Note, see on Da 4:33); the likelihood of a conspiracy of the nobles is confirmed by this verse.

majesty was added—My authority was greater than ever before (Job 42:12; Pr 22:4; "added," Mt 6:33).

37. praise … extol … honour—He heaps word on word, as if he cannot say enough in praise of God.

all whose works … truth … judgment—that is, are true and just (Re 15:3; 16:7). God has not dealt unjustly or too severely with me; whatever I have suffered, I deserved it all. It is a mark of true contrition to condemn one's self, and justify God (Ps 51:4).

those that walk in pride … abase—exemplified in me. He condemns himself before the whole world, in order to glorify God.




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