Daniel and the Writing on the Wall, Daniel 5 (Message Outline from Sunday’s Message)

DAniel Cover Image


  • Going thru Daniel / website
    • When life is out of control, God is in control.
    • Background / Review 1-4
  • ILL: Playing 21 with Bryan and Jody / No use
  • Daniel 5:21, “The most high God is sovereign over the realm of man, and sets over it whom he wishes.” <>
  • Today, we see this in action in Daniel 5



  • Background
    • Daniel 4 tells the story of how Babylon fell
    • 40 years between chapter 4 & 5
      • King Nebuchadnezzar dies
      • His three sons have short reigns afterwards
      • King Nabonidus takes over (Nebby’s son-in-law)
        • He doesn’t worship Marduk but the moon god sin. This causes great anger amongst the Marduk Priests in Babylon.
        • The tension led him to rule from the Oasis of Tayma- hundreds of miles away.
      • He places his son, Belshazzar, in charge of Babylon.
      • In that 40 years Cyrus the Great turns Persia into a mighty empire and by the time chapter 5 rolls around has defeated Nabonidus in battle and surrounded the city of Babylon.
    • Belshazzar believes the city is impregnable with her 387 ft walls that are 87 feet thick.
    • So he throws this big ol’ party with the enemy surrounding the city.
    • Daniel 5:1
      • Drink wine = getting drunk and some carnal partying
      • Nebby’s collection of gods, Belshazzar has them surround Marduk idol
  • Israel does not have idol, so raided its goblets, etc., he drank out of them.
  • The handwriting on the wall (Describe) > Everyone stops <>
  • 3 words: Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin
    • Words for $$$, money by weight back then
      • Mene- 20 ounces
      • Tekel = ½ an ounce
      • Upharsin = two half minas
    • OK- we know what terms definitions are, but what does it mean?
    • Belshazzar sees death in the words and goes into panic mode, Daniel 5:6
      • He calls for the enchanters, etc.
      • Says whoever is successful will be third in command (He doesn’t know Nabonidus is dead)
      • No one could understand the meaning of the words. It didn’t compute.
    • Mood changed- no one is partying now.
    • Queen mother shows up- She is not Belshazzars wife- but most likely Nebby’s wife.
      • She remembers Daniel and says send for him
    • Daniel is an old man, but largely forgotten.
  • Daniel comes in and interprets the writing on the wall, but not before giving Belshazzar a piece of his mind.
    • Daniel 5:17-24 (Belshazzar knew this story from last week / God granted this Kingdom / You have set yourself against God)
    • The words:
      • Mene, Mene: You days are numbered <> You may feel like the boss but you are not THE boss.
      • Tekel- weighed and found wanting
      • Upharsin – Kingdom will be divided. Power is over, temporary. (Rhyme)
    • Cyrus the Great defeats Babylon by coming through the river under the walls. <>
    • Belshazzar set himself against God by misusing the instruments of God. <>


  • Today, in our church, in here, we have sacred objects as well. (Not communion trays, or the like)
  • Sacred object = your body
    • Your physical body is a sacred object of God
    • You have been bought with the blood of Christ and the Holy Spirit lives within you.
    • “Do you not know that your bodies are a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own, you were bought at a price.  Therefore, honor God with your bodies.”  1 CR 6:19-20
  • How do you honor God with your body?
    • “I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.” (Romans 12:1)
      • What kinds of thoughts run through your mind each day?
      • What do you allow your eyes to see or not see?
      • What do you allow your ears to hear?
      • What about your tongue?
      • What about your hands?
    • Act sacred since the sacred lives within you. <review>



  • Why honor God with your body? Because of what Christ did with his body.
    • Jesus did more than honor God with his body, he sacrificed his body.
    • He took hos clean and pure body and imputed the sin of our bodies on his. This is why his blood was shed.
    • When we place our faith in Jesus, are baptized into his death, he takes our uncleanness and gives us his cleanness
    • We honor God with our body because Jesus sacrificed his body for us.
    • Maybe you are here today… <>

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