Chapter 2

  1. And in the second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuchadnezzar dreamed dreams by which his spirit was troubled, and his sleep broke from him. Then the king commanded to call the magicians, and the astrologers, and the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans, in order to show the king his dreams. So they came and stood before the king, and the king said unto them, I have dreamed a dream, and my spirit was troubled to know the dream. Then spoke the Chaldeans to the king in Syriac, O king, live for ever. Tell your servants the dream and we will show the interpretation. The king answered and said to the Chaldeans, The thing is gone from me. If you will not make known unto me the dream, with the interpretation thereof, you shall be cut in pieces and your houses shall be made a dunghill. But if you show the dream and the interpretation thereof, you shall receive of me gifts and rewards and great honor; therefore, show me the dream and the interpretation thereof. They answered again and said, Let the king tell his servants the dream and we will show the interpretation of it. The king answered and said, I know of certainty that you would gain the time, because you see the thing is gone from me. But if you will not make known unto me the dream, there is but one decree for you, for you have prepared lying and corrupt words to speak before me until the time is changed. Therefore, tell me the dream and I shall know that you can show me the interpretation thereof. The Chaldeans answered before the king, and said, There is not a man upon the earth that can show the king’s matter, therefore there is no king, lord, nor ruler that asked such things at any magician, or astrologer, or Chaldean. And it is a rare thing that the king requires, and there is no other that can show it before the king except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh. For this cause, the king was angry and very furious, and commanded to destroy all the wise men of Babylon.
  2. And the decree went forth that the wise men should be slain, and they sought Daniel and his fellows to be slain. Then Daniel answered with counsel and wisdom to Arioch, the captain of the king’s guard, who was gone forth to slay the wise men of Babylon. He answered and said to Arioch the king’s captain, Why is the decree so hasty from the king? Then Arioch made the thing known to Daniel. Then Daniel went in and desired of the king that he would give him time, and that he would show the king the interpretation. Then Daniel went to his house and made the thing known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions, that they would desire mercies of the God of Heaven concerning this secret, that Daniel and his fellows should not perish with the rest of the wise men of Babylon.
  3. Then was the secret revealed unto Daniel in a night vision. Then Daniel blessed the God of Heaven. Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever, for wisdom and might are his. And he changes the times and the seasons, he removes kings and sets up kings, he gives wisdom unto the wise and knowledge to them that know understanding. He reveals the deep and secret things, he knows what is in the darkness, and the light dwells with him. I thank you and praise you, O you God of my fathers, who have given me wisdom and might, and have made known unto me now what we desired of you; for you have now made known unto us the king’s matter.
  4. Therefore, Daniel went in unto Arioch, whom the king had ordained to destroy the wise men of Babylon. He went and said thus unto him: Destroy not the wise men of Babylon. Bring me in before the king and I will show unto the king the interpretation.
  5. 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. The king answered and said to Daniel — whose name was Belteshazzar — Are you able to make known unto me the dream which I have seen and the interpretation thereof? Daniel answered in the presence of the king and said, The secret which the king has demanded cannot the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, the fortune-tellers show unto the king. But there is a God in Heaven that reveals secrets, and makes known to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days. Your dream, and the visions of your head upon your bed, are these. As for you, O king, your thoughts came into your mind upon your bed, what should come to pass hereafter. And he that reveals secrets makes known to you what shall come to pass. 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 you might know the thoughts of your heart.
  6. You, O king, saw and beheld a great image. This great image, whose brightness was excellent, stood before you, and the form thereof was terrible. This image’s head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, his legs of iron, his feet, part of iron and part of clay. You saw until a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay and broke them to pieces. 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.
  7. This is the dream, and we will tell the interpretation thereof before the king. You, O king, are a king of kings, for the God of Heaven has given you a kingdom, power, and strength, and glory. And wheresoever the children of men dwell, the beasts of the field and the fowls of the heaven has he given into your hand, and has made you ruler over them all. You are this head of gold. And after you shall arise another kingdom inferior to you, and another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all the earth. And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron, forasmuch as iron breaks in pieces and subdues all things, and as iron that breaks all these shall it break in pieces and bruise. And whereas you saw 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 you saw the iron mixed with miry clay. 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. And whereas you saw 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. 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. Forasmuch as you saw that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it broke in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold, the great God has made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter. And the dream is certain, and the interpretation thereof sure.
  8. Then the king Nebuchadnezzar fell upon his face and worshipped Daniel, and commanded that they should offer an offering and sweet odors unto him. The king answered unto Daniel and said, Truly it is that your God is a God of gods, and a Lord of kings, and a revealer of secrets, seeing you could reveal this secret. 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. Then Daniel requested of the king, and he set Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego over the affairs of the province of Babylon; but Daniel sat in the gate of the king.