CHAPTER 2 | Verses 1-22

VERSE 1: “And in the second year of the kingdom of Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuchadnezzar dreamed dreams. His spirit was troubled, and sleep departed from him.” 

Second: The number ‘two’ speaks of two different opinions. Nebuchadnezzar had his own opinion about what he believed, how he saw reality etc. The other opinion belonged to God. The purpose of this chapter is to bring Nebuchadnezzar into agreement with God. 

Dreams: These were not typical dreams. 

His spirit was troubled: He was not at peace. He was agitated. The dreams were like a bell, ringing back and forth. This was troubling and annoying to him. 

VERSE 2: “And the king said to call the sorcerers, the astrologers, and the magicians, and the Chaldeans to declare to the king his dreams. And they came and they stood before the king.” 

To call: The purpose was that they might tell him his dreams (his dreams made a great impression upon him. They disturbed him, but he did not remember what they had been about). 

Sorcerers: The sages who use black magic (wrong things) in order to try to have power to discern things. Astrologers…magicians…

Chaldeans: The “wise men” in the land. They used different means, sorcery, and deceit in order to try to present themselves as men of knowledge. 

VERSE 3 “And the king said unto them, ‘I have dreamed a dream, and it is pounding my spirit that I might know the dream’.” 

Pounding: Agitating or troubling. 

That I might know the dream: He wants them to tell him what he had dreamed about. 

VERSE 4: “And the Chaldeans spoke to the king in Aramaic: ‘O king, live forever! Tell your servants the dream, and we will make known to you its interpretation.’” 

Aramaic: Up until this verse, the book of Daniel was written in Hebrew. There is now a change, and the writings are in Aramaic – the official language of the Babylonian people. 

Note: Nebuchadnezzar did not say that he would tell them the dream so that they could interpret it. He does not remember the dream, so he wants them to tell him what his dream was about. If these individuals were really as powerful as they claimed to be then they would be able to do this for the king. 

VERSE 5: “And the king answered and said to the Chaldeans, ‘This thing has gone out from before me. If you do not make known to me the dream, and its interpretation, your bodies will be cut into pieces and your homes will be made a heap.’” This thing has gone out from before me: In other words: He does not remember his dream. 

VERSE 6: “But if the dream and its interpretation you make known to me you shall receive gifts, rewards, and honour in abundance from me. Therefore, tell me the dream and its interpretation.” 

The dream and its interpretation you make known to me: These “wise men” presented themselves as knowing the secret or hidden things. They now had an opportunity to do just that. If they could tell the king what he had dreamt about then he would have believed their interpretation. 

VERSE 7: “They answered a second time and said, ‘Let the king tell the dream to his servants and we will tell you the interpretation.” 

Note: It is a lot easier to come up with an interpretation for a dream if the dream is known. To come up with the dream itself was something that they simply could not do. 

VERSE 8: “The king answered and said: ‘In truth I know that you are trying to buy time because you have seen that the word has gone up from me.’” 

Trying to buy time: The king is making a conclusion that they are stalling for time. The word has gone up from me: The king does not remember the dream. 

VERSE 9: “For if you do not make known to me the dream, (there is only) one judgment for you. For you have been speaking amongst yourselves, saying before me words that are deceptive and corrupt in order that the time might change. Therefore, tell me the dream, and I will know indeed the interpretation that you make known to me.” 

One judgment: If the dream is not revealed to the king, there will only be one outcome for these “wise men”. 

Deceptive: Lying That the time might change: An idiom meaning that they are hoping that the situation changes. 

Note: We are going to see that God gave this dream to Nebuchadnezzar. Nebuchadnezzar, not being a man of God nor someone submissive to the Word of God, is in no spiritual condition to understand this divine dream. In fact, because he is so far removed from the truth of God he cannot even remember the dream. Nebuchadnezzar understands the uniqueness of this situation. 

VERSE 10: “The Chaldeans answered before the king and said: ‘There is no man upon the earth who is able to tell the thing that the king requires. The king should not require something so great and rare as this from the sages, or from the enchanters, or from the Chaldeans.’” 

There is no man upon the earth: According to their perspective, no one upon the earth was able to fulfil the demand of the king. This is setting the scene for the uniqueness of Daniel’s revelation. Daniel is unique because he trusts God – not just in the little things but in the big things as well. Daniel is different to these other “wise men” because of his relationship with the living God. 

VERSE 11: “This thing is hard that the king asks. There is no one who is able to tell it before the king, only God is able to do that – whose dwelling place is not with flesh and blood.” 

Hard: Difficult or impossible. 

Only God is able to do that: They set up the stage very well, in order for God to manifest Himself in this situation (through the man of God). 

Whose dwelling place is not with flesh and blood: This separation between God and man is based on false theology. As believers in Messiah Yeshua (Immanuel, which means “God is with us”- see Exodus 29:44-46) we know that God is not distant from us. God wants to be active in our lives. We need to be participating in the things of God and manifesting Him to others. One of the outcomes of redemption is that God can dwell with us (1 Corinthians 6:19, Revelation 21:3-5) 

VERSE 12: “On account of this the king became hot and very wrathful. He burnt greatly, and he said to kill all the wise men of Babylon.” 

This: Their response. 

Hot…very wrathful…burnt greatly: He became furious. The king knew that he had dreamt no ordinary dream. He was angry at these false men who claimed that they had power to reveal hidden things. Now their lies had been manifested, and on account of this the king wanted to put them all to death. 

VERSE 13: “And the edict went out to kill the wise men, and also (for) Daniel and his friends to be killed.” 

Note: Although Daniel and his three friends had been faithful to God they were still sentenced to death (together with those who were unfaithful to God). From an earthly standpoint it did not seem likely that they would escape death. 

VERSE 14: “Then Daniel turned with counsel and with knowledge to Arioch, the captain of the king’s slaughter, who went out to kill all the wise men of Babylon.” 

Slaughter: The word used here refers to someone who uses knives (like a chef) in order to massacre. Arioch was in charge of killing people. He was the chief assassin/executioner. 

Note: Daniel sought more time from Arioch. 11 

VERSE 15: “(Daniel) answered and said to Arioch, the king’s captain: ‘For what reason has this barbaric edict gone forth from before the king?’ Then Arioch made known to Daniel this command.” 

King’s captain: A high ranking military official of the king. Barbaric: Cruel or violent 

Note: Daniel and his friends were not consulted by the leadership of the wise men when they were commanded to appear before the king. The wisdom of these four men was not the wisdom of those men, so they made a distinction between themselves and Daniel and his three friends. 

VERSE 16: “And Daniel entered in before the king, and he sought from him that he would be given time in order to reveal to the king the interpretation (of the dream).” 

Note: This implies that he would reveal the dream itself and then give its interpretation. 

VERSE 17: “Daniel went to his house and made the decision known to his friends Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah.” Made the decision known: Matthew 18:19-20 

Note: Daniel did not complain. He sought a Godly resolution to the situation he found himself in. 

VERSE 18: “They sought mercy from the God of the heavens concerning this secret thing, on account that they would not be put to death with the rest of the wise men of Babylon.” 

Sought mercy: God working in our lives is not something that we deserve or can demand. Daniel understood his unworthiness, but he also understood the great mercy of God. 

VERSE 19: “Then the secret was revealed to Daniel in a night vision. And Daniel blessed the God of heavens.” The secret was revealed… 

And Daniel blessed God: The first thing Daniel did (instead of quickly running to the king to save himself) was to worship. When God moves in our lives, first and foremost, it should produce worship. 

VERSE 20: “And Daniel answered and said, ‘Blessed is the name of the God who is for ever and ever. Who to Him is the wisdom and the power.’” 

Blessed is the name: Daniel is making a declaration about the character (name) of God. 

VERSE 21:  “He changes times and seasons. He causes kings to pass on, and He raises up new kings. He gives wisdom to the wise men, and knowledge to those who know understanding.” He changes times: God can change situations. 

VERSE 22: “For He reveals the deep and hidden things. He knows what is in the dark places, and light dwells with Him.” 

Dwells: Resides


HOW can WE help you?