Again, as predicted, once seven years had passed, Nebuchadnezzar acknowledged that it is God who rules and he received his kingdom back.
Nebuchadnezzar was warned with a dream, interpreted by Daniel, that if he did not humble himself before God and acknowledge that it is God who gives and takes away power that what he saw in his dream would become reality. Daniel warned him that he would lose his kingdom and live as a wild animal for seven years. It is a striking image: a once great king who was formerly dressed in purple and jewels, eating the finest food available, then living as a ragged vagrant chewing grass and sleeping in damp fields among wild donkeys. Nebuchadnezzar was admiring his kingdom’s splendor one year later, and before he could even finish his proud thought all that was predicted happened to him.
But at the end of that period, the seven years of living like an animal, Nebuchadnezzar raised his eyes toward heaven. Apparently, he had finally learned his lesson because his reason returned to him and he blessed the Most High and praised and honored Him who lives forever. Nebuchadnezzar was told in his dream that the purpose of these events was so that the living may knowthat the Most High is ruler over the realm of mankind, and bestows it on whom He wishes, and sets over it the lowliest of men.
Nebuchadnezzar learned that lesson and acknowledged that God’s dominion is an everlasting dominion, And His kingdom endures from generation to generation. All the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, but He does according to His will in the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of earth; And no one can ward off His hand Or say to Him, ‘What have You done?’ It is incredible that Nebuchadnezzar has gone from a proud king who made a statue of himself and commanded all of his subjects to worship it—to writing a letter to his entire kingdom detailing his mortifying ruin and acknowledging that God alone rules. God is the only reason he can have any of his power.
At that time Nebuchadnezzar’s reason was returned to him. And again, as Daniel predicted, his majesty and splendor were restored to him for the glory of his kingdom. He had just lived like a wild animal for seven years, but already his counselors and nobles began seeking him out. God allowed him to quickly reestablish his sovereignty, and surpassing greatness was added to him. Nebuchadnezzar was sent to live like an animal because of his great arrogance, but he was restored as king once he recognized that the Most High God is ruler over the realm of mankind. Nebuchadnezzar had attributed his greatness to himself, rather than to God, and he was humbled for it. He finally concluded that God, as the true ruler over mankind, sets over it whomever he wishes.
Nebuchadnezzar had to acknowledge God’s power in order to receive his kingdom back, but he did not have to write this letter to his kingdom detailing his downfall and acknowledging God as the ultimate power and authority. And yet, he wrote it anyway. Because he wrote this letter that was included in the book of Daniel, we get to witness Nebuchadnezzar’s total transformation from an arrogant and brash king to a humble man who acknowledged God as king. Nebuchadnezzar ends his letter saying, Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise, exalt and honor the King of heaven, for all His works are true and His ways just, and He is able to humble those who walk in pride.
34 “But at the end of that period, I, Nebuchadnezzar, raised my eyes toward heaven and my reason returned to me, and I blessed the Most High and praised and honored Him who lives forever;
For His dominion is an everlasting dominion,
And His kingdom endures from generation to generation.
35 “All the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing,
But He does according to His will in the host of heaven
And among the inhabitants of earth;
And no one can ward off His hand
Or say to Him, ‘What have You done?’
36 At that time my reason returned to me. And my majesty and splendor were restored to me for the glory of my kingdom, and my counselors and my nobles began seeking me out; so I was reestablished in my sovereignty, and surpassing greatness was added to me. 37 Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise, exalt and honor the King of heaven, for all His works are true and His ways just, and He is able to humble those who walk in pride.”
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