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Lessons - Monthly Archives: March 2009

The Book of Daniel – Chapter 5

March 27th, 2009

Derrick reviews Daniel Chapter 5 which takes place 20 years after the previous chapter and focuses on the “foolish” reign of Nebuchadnezzar’s grandson, Belshazzar.  Daniel shows us that confronting a fool requires wisdom and moral courage.


How can you identify a “fool”?

     1.  Fools believe they are always right, never wrong. (Proverbs 12:15; 18:2)

     2.  Fools can’t control their tongues. (Proverbs 18:6-7)

     3.  Fools can’t control their anger.

     4.  Fools walk on the thin edge of immorality. (Proverbs 10:23; 14:9)

     5.  Fools will not learn from history or past mistakes.  (Proverbs 26:11; 27:22)


The Feasting of Fools:

     In Chapter 5, Babylon is under siege by the Medo-Persians.  Babylon made light of the siege having stored provisions up for 20 years.  King Belshazzar gave a great feast for a thousand nobles displaying his contempt for the power of the Medo-Persian army. Further, he used silver and gold goblets taken from the temple of God and drank with them (God’s items meant for Holy worship) and used them for idol worship. This contempt for the power of the Most High showed just how foolish he really was. 


     While the group was feasting, fingers of a human hand appeared and wrote the inscription, “Mene, Mene, Tekel, Parsin” on the wall.  Belshazzar was terrified and Daniel was called in to interpret the message. Belshazzar offered to give Daniel gifts for his interpretation and make him a ruler in the kingdom.  But Daniel was not foolish and told Belshazzar to keep his gifts or give them to someone else.  Then he interpreted the writing on the wall. 


The Counsel of the Courageous:

     Daniel reminded Belshazzar of the humiliating history of his Grandfather Nebuchadnezzar and the lesson that took him a long time to learn… that God alone is sovereign.  Daniel also reminded Belshazzar of his foolishness for not honoring “the God who holds in his hand your life and all your ways.” (Daniel 5:23)  Then, Daniel interpreted the inscription.  Mene means to number, Tekel means to weigh, and Parsin means to break in two.  The message to Belshazzar was:  You don’t add up, you don’t measure up, so God will divide up your kingdom.


The Judgment of Jehovah:

     Cyrus and his army came into the city from the Euphrates river and killed Belshazzar and his nobles.  Darius the Mede took over the kingdom, fulfilling the statue dream interpreted by Daniel (for Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel chapter 2) years before. 


Lessons learned:  A fool’s tongue is long enough to cut his own throat.

     1.  “Do not answer a fool according to his folly.” (Proverbs 26:4)

     Don’t become a fool yourself – don’t play the fool’s game – or you will also be like him.

2.  “Answer a fool as his folly deserves.” (Proverbs 26:5)

     A fool only understands blunt force trauma.  Hit him squarely between the eyes with      the truth.


Be courageous like Daniel and don’t ever compromise the truth.  Derrick closed by praying that God would give us wisdom and courage to be His people in a foolish world. 

(Material provided in this summary is Copyright © 2009 by Derrick G. Jeter. All rights reserved. Used by permission.)


Topic Description Date
The Book of Daniel – Chapter 5 Derrick reviews Daniel Chapter 5 which takes place 20 years after the previous chapter and focuses on the “foolish” reign of Nebuchadnezzar’s grandson, Belshazzar.  Daniel shows us that confronting a fool requires wisdom and moral courage. [more] 3/27/2009
The Book of Daniel – Chapter 4 Derrick covers Daniel Chapter 4 on the topic of “pride”.  We were reminded that pride is contempt for God. 1.      The proud forget God. (Hosea 13:6) 2.      The proud refuse to obey the Word of God.  (Micah 6:8) 3.      The proud seek to steal God’s glor ... [more] 3/18/2009
The Book of Daniel – Chapter 3 Derrick reviews Daniel Chapter 3.  Sixteen years after Nebuchadnezzar had the dream about the statue made of various metals, he built an image of gold 90 feet high and 9 feet wide.  He commanded people to worship the idol when they heard music (Daniel 3:5-6) and said, “whoever does not fal ... [more] 3/18/2009
The Book of Daniel – Chapter 2 (vv 24-49) Derrick reviews Daniel’s interpretation of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream (Dan 2:24-49).  Before revealing or interpreting the dream, Daniel gave praise and glory to God.  Daniel’s actions are a reminder to us that the gifts, skills, or intelligence we possess are not ours.  It is God and God alone ... [more] 3/5/2009
The Book of Daniel – Chapter 2 (vv 1- 23) Derrick continues our study in Daniel, reviewing Chapter 2 verses 1-23.  The lesson focus was on how we should respond when life presents unexpected trouble.  Daniel offers great examples: 1.      Daniel was wise and discreet in his language.  When unexpected trouble comes, stay calm.  Ga ... [more] 3/3/2009