Daniel Chapter 2 Continued
Daniel 2:25 “Then Arioch brought in Daniel before the king in haste, and said thus unto him, I have found a man of the captives of Judah, that will make known unto the king the interpretation.”
In the last lesson, we saw the king have a troubling dream. He called for the so-called wise men, but they could not tell him of his dream. He pronounced death on all of the wise men in the land, including Daniel and his 3 friends, because of the dream. Now we see, God has given the dream and its interpretation to Daniel.
Arioch was in charge of the executions. He did not want to kill all of them, but had to, or lose his own life. He was happy to report to the king that one of the captives of Judah had the dream for him.
Daniel 2:26 “The king answered and said to Daniel, whose name [was] Belteshazzar, Art thou able to make known unto me the dream which I have seen, and the interpretation thereof?”
We remember, from a previous lesson, that Nebuchadnezzar had changed Daniel’s name to Belteshazzar. The king had not wanted to kill the men either. He just wanted to know about his dream.
Daniel 2:27 “Daniel answered in the presence of the king, and said, The secret which the king hath demanded cannot the wise [men], the astrologers, the magicians, the soothsayers, show unto the king;”
Daniel first tells Nebuchadnezzar the impossibility of man to do what the king had asked. Only God could reveal this dream. He is, in a sense, defending the wise men.
Daniel 2:28 “But there is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets, and maketh known to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days. Thy dream, and the visions of thy head upon thy bed, are these;”
This was Daniel’s opportunity to tell Nebuchadnezzar of his God. Daniel will give God the glory for it all. God reveals these secrets to His own. Daniel belonged to God, so he has the dream and interpretation.
This vision is for the latter days, not for the next few days. First, Daniel tells him he dreamed of his head upon the bed.
Daniel 2:29 “As for thee, O king, thy thoughts came [into thy mind] upon thy bed, what should come to pass hereafter: and he that revealeth secrets maketh known to thee what shall come to pass.”
Notice, Daniel puts the emphasis on Nebuchadnezzar inquiring of God. Daniel also says, it is not he that has the answer, but God.
Daniel 2:30 “But as for me, this secret is not revealed to me for [any] wisdom that I have more than any living, but for [their] sakes that shall make known the interpretation to the king, and that thou mightest know the thoughts of thy heart.”
Daniel is a humble man. He says, this was not for his own benefit this happened, but because God wanted to reveal something to Nebuchadnezzar. Perhaps, that was the main reason, but God also wanted to elevate Daniel in the eyes of Nebuchadnezzar.
Daniel is not looking for wealth or fame from this. He is not even wanting them to think of him above others. He wants to save the lives of his friends, himself, and the other men who had been condemned to die.
Daniel 2:31 “Thou, O king, sawest, and behold a great image. This great image, whose brightness [was] excellent, stood before thee; and the form thereof [was] terrible.”
This great image in the dream of Nebuchadnezzar, and in the night vision of Daniel, is symbolic of 4 great world powers, which soon come on the scene. “Terrible” speaks of the great power associated with this image.
Daniel 2:32 “This image’s head [was] of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass,”
This is like a giant of a man. In the spiritual sense, we know that God is above all. God is symbolized by gold, and also, is the head of the body of Christ. Silver speaks of redemption, and is between the gold and the bronze. Redemption is always between God and judgment. “Bronze” symbolizes judgment.
In this particular case, one of the meanings that stand out the most is given later in the chapter, and explains these are different empires represented. The gold of the head is speaking of the Babylonian empire. The silver is speaking of the empire of Media and Persia. The bronze speaks of the Greek empire.
Daniel 2:33 “His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay.”
The “iron” symbolizes hardness, and “clay” speaks of the earthy. The feet of clay and iron speak of the Roman Empire.
The first thing we must notice in the legs (2 legs), is that they are divided. There were two sides to the old Roman Empire. The clay speaks of the worldliness of this empire. We do know there were very poor morals of the people during this time. This empire was strong enough to stand against Persia, but their foundation was of clay.
Daniel 2:34 “Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet [that were] of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces.”
This “Stone” is the Cornerstone, Jesus Christ. Rome was in power when Jesus came to the earth as the Savior of the world.
Mark 12:10 “And have ye not read this scripture; The stone which the builders rejected is become the head of the corner:”
Jesus was rejected of His Hebrew family. He actually defeated sin and Satan on the cross, and defeated death in His resurrection. Rome, or any other government, cannot stand against God.
Matthew 21:44 “And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.”
Jesus is King and Lord to all who believe. His kingdom is not of this world.
John 18:36 “Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.”
In a sense, all believers are His kingdom, because He dwells in us.
Daniel 2:35 “Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshing floors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth.”
All of these earthly kingdoms give way to that heavenly kingdom headed by Jesus Christ. The “mountain” is speaking of the multitude of believers, who have become servants to Jesus and His kingdom. The whole earth is filled with the knowledge of God.
We will see from the following Scripture, the people that have been affected by the Lord Jesus.
Revelation 7:9 “After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;”
Daniel 2:36 “This [is] the dream; and we will tell the interpretation thereof before the king.”
All that had been said before was in the dream that Nebuchadnezzar had. Now, Daniel will start his interpretation of that dream.
Daniel 2:37 “Thou, O king, [art] a king of kings: for the God of heaven hath given thee a kingdom, power, and strength, and glory.”
This is spoken to Nebuchadnezzar. Notice, he is a king of kings, and not the King of kings. God made Nebuchadnezzar king. His power, and strength, and glory all came from God. We see from the following Scripture that a king is king, because God made him king.
Proverbs 8:15 “By me kings reign, and princes decree justice.”
Daniel 2:38 “And wheresoever the children of men dwell, the beasts of the field and the fowls of the heaven hath he given into thine hand, and hath made thee ruler over them all. Thou [art] this head of gold.”
Nebuchadnezzar was a powerful king. The Babylonian rule was over all the nations they conquered. The men, women, and children were subject to him.
Even the animals became his to command. It seemed, during the greatness of this empire, that even the animals and birds were his to command.
He was the head of gold. He was like a god to these people.
Daniel 2:39 “And after thee shall arise another kingdom inferior to thee, and another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all the earth.”
Gold is a more precious metal than silver, and silver is more precious than bronze. The position on the body of the image, also, showed their value. The gold was higher up the body than the silver, and the bronze was below the silver.
This kingdom that the silver represents is the Persian Empire. The bronze represents the Greek empire. Alexander the great did almost conquer the known world at that time.
Daniel 2:40 “And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron: forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all [things]: and as iron that breaketh all these, shall it break in pieces and bruise.”
This 4th kingdom is speaking of the Roman Empire. I prefer to say both sides of the Roman Empire. They were an empire that ruled with an iron hand. It was actually officials of that Roman Empire who were involved in the crucifixion of Jesus.
This metal fittingly represents the Roman Empire which would be characterized by the description predicted. It did have armies in iron armor known as the iron Legions of Rome, and it had strength and invincibility.
Daniel 2:41 “And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters’ clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay.”
The iron in the 10 toes (kings), represents the Roman Empire in its revived form, prior to the second coming of Christ, as having iron like strength for conquest. But the clay mixed in depicts that the union (federation), of kings and nations would have fatal flaws of human weakness, so that it is inherently vulnerable.
We said earlier, how the clay spoke of their worldliness. They were a people of poor morals. Their armies were strong, but true strength comes from moral fiber.
Daniel 2:42 “And [as] the toes of the feet [were] part of iron, and part of clay, [so] the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken.”
This empire will rise again in the end times. We read a little about it in the following verse.
Daniel 7:7 “After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it [was] diverse from all the beasts that [were] before it; and it had ten horns.”
We will deal with this more fully in the 7th chapter.
Daniel 2:43 “And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay.”
In all the lands the Romans conquered, they really did mingle with the people of the foreign lands. They brought heavy taxes upon those they conquered.
The Jews really hated them. Even though the Jews were the ones in captivity, they still looked down at the Romans as immoral people.
Daniel 2:44 “And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, [but] it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.”
This kingdom is of the Lord Jesus Christ, who is King of kings and Lord of lords. God’s kingdom ruled by Messiah is the final rule, never to be replaced. All the gates of hell cannot prevail against this kingdom. The subjects are the people of all nations, who are followers of, and believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Luke 1:33 “And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.”
When Jesus was on the earth as our Savior, His kingdom was spiritual. There is a time coming, when He will set up a physical kingdom, and reign upon this earth.
Revelation 20:6 “Blessed and holy [is] he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.”
He will reign even longer than the thousand years, as we see in the next verse.
Revelation 11:15 “And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become [the kingdoms] of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.”
Daniel 2:45 “Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great God hath made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter: and the dream [is] certain, and the interpretation thereof sure.”
The stone being cut out of the mountain without hands speaks of the deity of Christ. The stone is Messiah. The mountain pictures God’s all transcending government that looms over weak earthly powers. Messiah is “cut out” of this sovereign realm by God, which accords with the Son of Man coming. “Without hands” denotes that the Messiah comes from God and is not of human origin or power.
Philippians 2:10 “That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of [things] in heaven, and [things] in earth, and [things] under the earth;”
Nebuchadnezzar knows the dream is true. He will believe the prophecy, because the dream was true. Daniel has no hesitation. He knows the prophecy is true.
Daniel 2:46 “Then the king Nebuchadnezzar fell upon his face, and worshipped Daniel, and commanded that they should offer an oblation and sweet odors unto him.”
The king believes everything Daniel has said. He also knows, that no fleshly man could have brought him this dream and interpretation. He worships Daniel, because of God in Daniel. We find the same thing happening to Peter in the following verse.
Acts 10:25 “And as Peter was coming in, Cornelius met him, and fell down at his feet, and worshipped [him].”
King Nebuchadnezzar did not know God, and he worshipped Daniel, because of the supernatural ability God had given Daniel.
Daniel 2:47 “The king answered unto Daniel, and said, Of a truth [it is], that your God [is] a God of gods, and a Lord of kings, and a revealer of secrets, seeing thou couldest reveal this secret.”
This clarifies the king worshipping Daniel. He could not see God, so he worshipped the representative of God.
All the time, he was truly worshipping God for His greatness in revealing the dream to Daniel. Nebuchadnezzar is aware it was Daniel’s God who revealed this secret to Daniel. Nebuchadnezzar recognized God, and said so in the Scripture above.
Daniel 2:48 “Then the king made Daniel a great man, and gave him many great gifts, and made him ruler over the whole province of Babylon, and chief of the governors over all the wise [men] of Babylon.”
God was sovereign in all of this. The glory went to God, but the benefits came to Daniel. Daniel’s faithfulness to God is now rewarded. He has moved up in position in the land, as Joseph did when he interpreted Pharaoh’s dream.
Daniel did not ask for rewards for himself, but they came as a blessing from God. Now, Daniel will have access to the king.
Daniel 2:49 “Then Daniel requested of the king, and he set Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, over the affairs of the province of Babylon: but Daniel [sat] in the gate of the king.”
Daniel did not forget his friends, but requested they be put over the affairs of the province of Babylon. Nebuchadnezzar agreed, and also, sat Daniel in the gate of the king. He would be close to the king for advice, or counsel. The following Scripture could have had a great deal to do with why Daniel was put in the gate of the king.
Amos 5:15 “Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate: it may be that the LORD God of hosts will be gracious unto the remnant of Joseph.”
Judgment must be just. They must hate evil, and love good. Daniel does this very thing. God rewards those who are faithful to Him. Daniel found that out.
Daniel 2 Continued Questions
1. Who brought Daniel before the king?
2. Why did he bring him?
3. What was Daniel’s name?
4. What defense did Daniel give for the astrologers, magicians, and soothsayers?
5. Who was the only One who could reveal the dream?
6. When is the dream for?
7. This was Daniel’s opportunity to tell Nebuchadnezzar of his _____.
8. Who does Daniel put the emphasis on?
9. Why was this revealed to Daniel?
10. What was another reason God did this?
11. What did Nebuchadnezzar dream of?
12. What did it represent?
13. What does “terrible” speak of in verse 31?
14. Describe the image.
15. God is symbolized by what metal?
16. Bronze symbolizes ____________.
17. What empire is the gold of the head speaking of?
18. What empire does the silver represent?
19. What empire does the bronze represent?
20. What empire is represented by the iron and clay?
21. What is the first thing we must notice about the legs?
22. Who is the “Stone” in verse 34?
23. What did Jesus defeat on the cross?
24. Who are the Kingdom of Christ?
25. What did the Stone do to the other empires?
26. What is the “mountain” speaking of in verse 35?
27. What countries’ people have been affected by Jesus?
28. Who is Daniel speaking to in verse 37?
29. What was Nebuchadnezzar like, to his people?
30. What empire does the silver represent?
31. The bronze represented the _________ Empire.
32. The feet of clay and iron represent what empire?
33. The clay spoke of their _____________.
34. Who sets up the kingdom that shall never be destroyed?
35. This kingdom is of the ________ ________ _________.
36. What effect did the interpretation have on Nebuchadnezzar?
37. What did he say about Daniel’s God?
38. What did he do for Daniel?
39. What did Daniel get the king to do for his 3 friends?