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to say, that there was a certain captive | after many supplications and prayers. Who who came from Judea, a Jew by birth; but did thereupon praise God all the days of his brought away thence by Nebuchadnezzar, | life, as one of almighty power, and who takes when he destroyed Jerusalem; whose name care of mankind. He also reminded him was Daniel; a wise man, and one of great that he had greatly blasphemed against God, sagacity in finding out what was impossible and had made use of his vessels amongst his for others to discover, and what was known concubines; that therefore God was angry to God alone; and who brought to light and with him, and declared by his writing beanswered such questions to Nebuchadnezzar, forehand what a sad conclusion of his life he as no one else was able to answer, when they should come to. And he explained the wriwere consulted. She therefore desired that ting thus: “MANEH: this, if it be expounded he would send for him, and inquire concern
in the Greek language, may signify Apaduos, a ing the writing; and to condemn the unskil number; because God hath numbered so fulness of those that could not find their long a time for thy life, and for thy governmeaning; and this although what God sig ment; and there remains but a small portion. nified thereby should be of a melancholy THEKEL: this signifies Esaliuos, a weight; nature.
and means that God hath weighed thy kingWhen Baltasar heard this, he called for dom in a balance, and finds it going down Daniel; and when he had expressed what he already. PHARES: this also in the Greek had learned concerning him and his wisdom, tongue, denotes Krágua, a fragment; God will and how a divine spirit was with him, and therefore break thy kingdom in pieces, and that he alone was fully capable of finding out divide it among the Medes and Persians.*** what others would never have thought of; he When Daniel had told the king that the desired him to declare to him what this wri writing upon the wall signified these events, ting meant. That if he did so, he would give Baltasar was in great sorrow and affliction, him leave to wear purple, and to put a chain as was to be expected when the interpretaof gold about his neck, and would bestow on tion was so heavy upon him. However he him the third part of his dominion, as an ho did not refuse what he had promised Daniel, norary reward of his wisdom, that thereby he although he were become a foreteller of mismight become illustrious to those who saw fortunes; but bestowed it all upon him. As him, and who inquired upon what occasion reasoning thus, that what he was to reward he obtained such honours. But Daniel de was peculiar to himself and to fate, and did sired, 6 that he would keep his gifts to him not belong to the prophet; but that it was self; the effect of wisdom, and of divine reve the part of a good and a just man to give lation admitting of no gifts; but bestowing its what he had promised, although the events advantages on petitioners freely; but ibat were to be of a melancholy nature. Now still he would explain the writing to him. He after a little while, both himself, and the city said, it denoted that he should soon die; and were taken by Cyrus_king of Persia, who this because he had not learned to honour fought against him. For it was Baltasar, God, and not to admit things above human under whom Babylon was taken; when he nature, by what punishments his progenitor had reigned seventeen years. And this is had undergone for the injuries he had offered the end of the posterity of Nebuchadnezzar, to God; and because he had quite forgotten as history informs us. But when Babylon how Nebuchadnezzar was removed to feed was taken by Darius, and when he, with his among wild beasts, for his impieties, and did kinsman Cyrus, had put an end to the donot recover his former life among men, and minion of the Babylonians, he was sixty-two his kingdom, but upon God's mercy to him, years old. He was the son of Astyages; and mother Nitocris appears to have been the real regent taking of Babylon, to have been over in a very few
years; afterwards; Baltasar being a weak and effeminate prince, contrary to the strongest evidence elsewhere; though in as I have already noted, and as his history shews. N. B. contradiction to this, he knew Cyrus to be younger than It is plain that though Xenophon knew the history of Cyaxares, and a very old man before he died; which Cyrus, yet did he not know his chronology, or how long agrees with the other testimonies of antiquity.”
He thought those wars, before the * Daniel v. 28.
in his war.
had *another name among the Greeks. injunctions, and rested in quiet. But Daniel Moreover, he took Daniel the prophet, and had no regard to them; but as he was wont carried him with him into Media, and ho he stood and prayed to God in the sight of noured him very greatly, and kept him with them all. The princes having now met with him, for he was one of the three presidents the occasion they so earnestly sought, came whom he set over his three hundred and sixty | presently to the king, and accused Daniel as provinces.
the only person who had transgressed the However, while Daniel was in so great decree; while not one of the rest durst pray dignity, and in so great favour with Darius, to their gods. This discovery they made, and was alone intrusted with every thing by not because of his impiety, but because they him, as having somewhat divine in him, he had watched him and observed him out of was envied by the rest; for those that see envy. For supposing that Darius did thus others in greater honour than themselves out of a greater kindness to him than they with kings, envy them. And when those that expected, and that he was ready to grant were grieved at the great favour Daniel was him pardon for this contempt of his injuncin with Darius, sought for an occasion against tions; and envying this very pardon to Daniel, him, he afforded them no occasion at all. they did not become more favourable to him, For as he was above all the temptations of but desired he might be cast into the den of money, and despised bribery, and esteemed lions, according to the law. So Darius, hoit a very base thing to take any thing by way ping that God would deliver him, and that of reward, even when it might be justly given he would undergo nothing that was terrible him, he afforded those that envied him not by the wild beasts; bade him bear this accithe least handle for an accusation. So when dent cheerfully: and when he was cast into they could find nothing for which they might the den, he put his seal to the stone that lay calumniate him to the king; and thereby de upon the mouth of the den, and went his way. prive him of the honour he was in; they He then passed all the night without food, sought for some other method whereby they and without sleep; being in great distress for might destroy him. When therefore they Daniel. But when it was day, he got up, and saw that Daniel prayed to God three times a came to the den; and found the seal entire, day,t they thought they had found an occa which he had left the stone sealed withal; sion by which they might ruin him. So they he also opened the seal, and called to Daniel, came to Darius, and told him, that the princes and asked him if he were alive? And as soon and governors had thought proper to allow as he heard the king's voice, and said, that the multitude a relaxation for thirty days; he had suffered no harm; the king gave order that no one might offer a petition or prayer that he should be drawn up out of the den. either to himself, or to the gods; but that he Now when his enemies saw that Daniel had who should transgress this decree should be suffered nothing which was terrible, they cast into the den of lions, and there perish.I would not own that he was preserved by God,
Hereupon the king, not being acquainted and by his providence; but they said, that with their wicked design, nor suspecting that the lions bad been filled with food, and on it was a contrivance against Daniel, said he that account it was, as they supposed, that was pleased with this decree; and promised they would not touch Daniel, nor come to to confirm what they desired; he also pub him. And this they alleged to the king. But lished an edict to promulgate that decree the king, out of an abhorrence of their wickwhich the princes had made. Accordingly edness, gave order that they should throw in all the rest took care not to transgress those a great deal of flesh to the lions; and when
f It was a constant custom among the Jews, for those that were in the country, or in any distant land, to turn themselves towards Jerusalem; and for those that were at Jerusalem, to turn towards the temple, when they prayed ; and the probable reason of this might be, the words of Solomon, in his prayer to God, at the consecration of the
temple : If thy people, when led away captive, pray unto thee toward their land which thou gavest unto their fathers, the city, which thou hast chosen, and the house, which I have built for thy name; then hear thou their prayers, and their supplication, in heaven, thy dwelling place, and maintain their cause, 1 Kings viii. 48, 49. B.
Daniel vi 7.