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1 Belshazzar the king made a great feast for a thousand of his lords; and he drank wine before the thousand.
2 Belshazzar, under the influence of the wine, commanded men to bring the gold and silver vessels that Nebuchadnezzar his forefather had taken out of the temple which was in Jerusalem, that the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines might drink from them.
3 Then they brought the golden vessels that had been taken out of the temple of the house of God, which was in Jerusalem; and the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines drank from them.
4 They drank wine and praised the gods of gold and of silver, of bronze, iron, wood, and stone.
5 At that moment the fingers of a man's hand came forth and wrote opposite the lampstand upon the plaster of the wall of the king's palace. And the king saw that part of the hand that wrote.
6 Then the king's countenance changed and his thoughts alarmed him; and the joints of his hips loosened and his knees began to knock together.
7 The king cried loudly to bring the conjurers, the Chaldeans, and the diviners. The king responded and said to the wise men of Babylon, Any man who reads this writing and declares its interpretation to me shall be clothed in purple and shall have a chain of gold around his neck and shall rule as the third ruler in the kingdom.
8 Then all the king's wise men came, but they could not read the writing nor make its interpretation known to the king.
9 Then King Belshazzar was greatly alarmed; his countenance was further changed, and his lords were perplexed.
10 The queen mother, because of the words of the king and his lords, came to the banquet house. The queen mother responded and said, O king, live forever! Do not let your thoughts alarm you, nor let your countenance change.
11 There is a man in your kingdom in whom is a spirit of the holy gods; and in the days of your forefather light and insight and wisdom like the wisdom of the gods were found in him. And King Nebuchadnezzar your forefather - your forefather, O king - made him chief of the magicians, conjurers, Chaldeans, and diviners,
12 Because an excellent spirit and knowledge and insight, and the interpretation of dreams, the declaring of riddles, and the resolving of problems were found in this Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar. Let Daniel now be called, and he will declare the interpretation.
13 Then Daniel was brought before the king. The king responded and said to Daniel, Are you Daniel, one of the captives of Judah, whom my forefather the king brought from Judah?
14 Now I have heard about you that a spirit of the gods is in you and that light and insight and surpassing wisdom are found in you.
15 And now the wise men, the conjurers, have been brought in before me that they might read this writing and make its interpretation known to me, but they cannot declare the interpretation of the thing.
16 But I have heard about you that you can give interpretations and resolve problems. If you can now read the writing and make its interpretation known to me, you shall be clothed in purple and shall have a chain of gold around your neck and shall rule as the third ruler in the kingdom.
17 Then Daniel answered and said before the king, Let your gifts remain with you, or give your rewards to another; nevertheless I will read the writing for the king and make the interpretation known to him.
18 Regarding you, O king, God the Most High gave to Nebuchadnezzar your forefather kingship, greatness, glory, and majesty;
19 And because of the greatness which He gave to him, all peoples, nations, and languages trembled and feared before him; whomever he wished he slew, and whomever he wished he kept alive, and whomever he wished he raised up, and whomever he wished he brought down.
20 But when his heart was lifted up and his spirit became so arrogant that he conducted himself in pride, he was deposed from his royal throne, and his glory was taken away from him.
21 And he was driven from the sons of men, and his heart was made like that of the beasts, and his dwelling place was with the wild donkeys; men fed him with grass as they do bulls, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven, until he came to know that God the Most High is the Ruler over the kingdom of men and sets over it whomever He wills.
22 And you his descendant, Belshazzar, have not humbled your heart, though you knew all this;
23 But you have exalted yourself against the Lord of the heavens; and they have brought the vessels of His house before you, and you and your lords, your wives, and your concubines have drunk wine from them; and you have praised the gods of silver and of gold, of bronze, iron, wood, and stone, which do not see nor hear nor know. But the God in whose hand is your breath and to whom all your ways belong, you have not honored.
24 Then that part of the hand was sent from before Him, and this writing was inscribed.
25 And this is the writing that was inscribed: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN.
26 This is the interpretation of the matter: MENE - God has numbered your kingdom and brought it to an end;
27 TEKEL - You have been weighed in the scales and found to be lacking.
28 PERES - Your kingdom has been divided and given to the Medes and Persians.
29 Then Belshazzar commanded; and they clothed Daniel in purple and put a chain of gold around his neck, and they made the proclamation concerning him that he should rule as the third ruler in the kingdom.
30 In that very night Belshazzar the Chaldean king was slain.
31 And Darius the Mede received the kingdom at about the age of sixty-two.