Daniel 4:1 Index
"Nebuchadnezzar the king, unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth; Peace be multiplied unto you."
Research Material

"Nebuchadnezzar the king..."

  • This part of the narrative opens with Nebuchadnezzar as a victor over his foes. He had accomplished successfully all his military enterprises. He had subdued Assyria, Phoenicia, Judea, Egypt, and Arabia. These great conquests probably betrayed him into vanity and self-confidence. At this very time, when he felt most secure, when it was most unlikely that anything would occur to disturb his self-complacent tranquillity -- at this time God chose to trouble him with fears and forebodings. (US 80)
  • But what could strike fear to the heart of such a monarch as Nebuchadnezzar? He had been a warrior from his youth. He had often faced the perils of battle, the terrors of slaughter and carnage, and in the midst of such scenes he had been unmoved. What could make him afraid now? No foe threatened, no hostile cloud was visible! His own thoughts and visions were used to teach him what nothing else could -- a salutary lesson of dependence and humility. He who had terrified others, but whom no others could terrify, was made a terror to himself. (US 80-81)
  • Daniel 4 was written by King Nebuchadnezzar. How amazing! Even more amazing, it is an official edict containing the king's personal testimony to God's leadership in his life. (MM 59)
  • Daniel 4 is one of the most unusual in the entire Bible because it was written y Nebuchadnezzar, the famous Babylonian king. Here he gives his testimony concerning a dream God gave him and the experience it brought him. As ruler of the great, idolatrous nation of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar faced problems and temptations that few are called upon to meet. But God loved him and spoke to him, and brought him the experience which he here relates, not only for his own time and nation, but for all the world to the end of earth's history. (Edwin Thiele, Outline Studies in Daniel, page 40)
  • Nebuchadnezzar was the greatest ruler of the age in which he lived. Ezekiel spoke of him as “a king of kings” (Ezekiel 26:7) and prophesied that God would allow him to complete the destruction of Jerusalem, and that because the inhabitants of “the renowned city” (Ezekiel 26:17) of Tyre would say against Jerusalem “Aha, she is broken that was the gates of the people: she is turned unto me: I shall be replenished, now she is laid waste” (Ezekiel 26:2), God would “bring upon Tyrus Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon,” (Ezekiel 26:7) “the terrible of the nations” (Ezekiel 28:7) who would make this place “in the midst of the seas” (Ezekiel 27:32) “a desolate city” (Ezekiel 26:19) that should be “built no more” (Ezekiel 26:14). The prophet further declared: “Nebuchadnrezzar king of Babylon caused his army to serve a great service against Tyrus: ... yet he had no wages, nor his army; ... therefore thus saith the Lord God: ... I have given him the land of Egypt for his labor wherewith he served against it, because they wrought for me.” (Ezekiel 29:18-19) (The Youth's Instructor article "The Power and Splendor of Babylon During Nebuchadnezzar's Reign" October 11, 1904)

"...unto all people..."

  • The narrative of events in Daniel 4 is recorded in the form of a royal proclamation. (4BC 787)
  • The fourth chapter of Daniel is, in some respects, the most wonderful chapter in the Bible. It is a public document written by Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, after his humiliation by the God of heaven. It was sent "unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth." It therefore comes to us with as much freshness and vitality as though it were issued to the generation in which we live. The object was, says Nebuchadnezzar, "to show the signs and wonders that the high God hath wrought toward me." (Daniel 4:2). Contemplating what had been done, he exclaimed in language similar to that of the apostle Paul, "How great are His signs" His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and His dominion is from generations to generation." (Daniel 4:3) (SNH 57)
  • Nebuchadnezzar's reign had been one long scene of warfare. He was a man of war. This characteristic was so prominent in the life of the great king that the prophecy calls him "the terrible of the nations," (Ezekiel 30:10-11; 31:12) and the "hammer of the whole earth." (Jeremiah 50:23). He had met foes on every side and had been successful, because God had put His "sword into the hand of the king of Babylon," (Ezekiel 30:25) and had made use of this monarch to punish other nations which had refused the light of truth. To illustrate: For thirteen years the city of Tyre resisted every effort made by Nebuchadnezzar. Finally he was successful, but gained no spoils, for Tyre, captured on the seacoast, removed to an island. Although Nebuchadnezzar knew it not, he was fulfilling prophecy in the destruction of Tyre. The Lord rewarded him for this work by sending word to him through the prophet Ezekiel that he could have the spoil of Egypt as wages for his army while destroying Tyre, for Egypt as well as Tyre had rejected the knowledge of the true God. Then Nebuchadnezzar turned his arms against Egypt, and that nation, which years before had held Israel in bondage, now became a salve to Babylonian power. (Ezekiel 29:17-21; 30:9-11). (SNH 57-58)
  • The prophet Ezekiel, one of the Hebrew captives, was given a view of the capture of Egypt by Nebuchadnezzar, and was told to send the testimony to Pharaoh, king of Egypt. In this prophecy Egypt is represented as a mighty tree towering above all the trees of the earth. Even the trees of Eden envied the splendor of this tree. All the fowls of heaven nested in its boughs; the hosts of earth dwelt beneath its boughs; the hosts of earth dwelt beneath its branches. But this tree was lifted up because of its greatness, and God sent Babylon to hew it to the ground. The crash of its fall shook the earth. (Ezekiel 31:1-8). (SNH 58)
  • This prophecy must have been known to Nebuchadnezzar, if not before, at least after his victory over Egypt, for it was familiar to the Jews, and there were Jews in the Babylonian court. This throws light on the fourth chapter of Daniel. (SHN 58-59)

"...Peace be multiplied unto you."

  • The introduction to the proclamation contains an expression of good wishes. (4BC 788)