DISHONORED AND DISGRACED

HOLY WAR SERIES

Gen. Deborah Green

P RAISE GOD. Welcome to this broadcast, the name of this message is, “Dishonored and Disgraced.” And that was God’s judgment against this king, and it was His sore displeasure with this king who was thinking that he would remain forever, that he had great power, that he could mock and scoff and make light of the most high God, and that there’s no retribution that would come to him. AND THAT ATTITUDE IS ONE THAT ANGERS GOD. Because it is God who is the Almighty.

And I believe it was yesterday in the evening prayer that the Lord spoke and said that He would bring His fist of vengeance. And that’s what we see in this chapter of Daniel—that God brought His fist of vengeance upon the king who was drunk, intoxicated, mocking, and scoffing, and making light of the things of God; and GOD WAS SORELY DISPLEASED WITH THE WAY THAT THIS MAN HAD DISHONORED AND DISGRACED HIM. And the man met with his death the very night that he thought he was having a good ol time.

So, let’s go there, Daniel chapter 5, I’m reading out of the Amplified, we’ll start in verse one so we can get in on the party. This is a drunken party, this is, you might say, the final fiesta for this fool who has made light of God. Then it says, “BELSHAZZAR THE king [descendant of Nebuchadnezzar] made a great feast for a thousand of his lords, and he drank his wine in the presence of the thousand.” So this was a big party that he was having. And obviously he did not have any prohibition about drinking his wine, because he was getting drunk in the presence of these thousand lords.

And then it says, “Belshazzar, while he was tasting the wine, commanded that the gold and silver vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the temple [out of the sacred area—the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies] which was in Jerusalem be brought…”

In other words, he commanded that these sacred vessels that were used and dedicated for the purposes of God, be brought to his drunken party. So, he was in that command, TOTALLY DISRESPECTING AND DISHONORING GOD, forgetting that God was, is, and always will be the Almighty, forgetting that the very fact that he even had a kingdom to rule was by God’s hand of mercy, and not by his own power. So, in his intoxicated state, he wanted the very finest of vessels to drink out of, and he requested that he be brought to his presence.

And then it says, “Then they brought in the gold and silver vessels which had been taken out of the temple, the house of God which was in Jerusalem; and the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines drank from them.” So, they proceeded to get drunk out of the very vessels that had been offered, dedicated, to the Lord God Almighty.

Now, we must remember that the reason that Nebuchadnezzar even had those vessels was because God’s people had gone a whoring and had been taken into captivity, and therefore, he was able to have those vessels. If they would have walked right, that wouldn’t have happened, and that dishonorable act would have never been committed.

But going on it says, “They drank wine and praised the gods of gold and silver, of bronze, iron, wood, and stone.” I can’t even imagine praising a god of gold or iron, wood or stone, but I imagine also that if you were intoxicated, and you were a pagan, and you were a believer in elemental gods, that you would be able to say, “Oh, look at this golden vessel that came from the gold god (or the god of gold or whatever)” and go off on that spin-off and offend God, because that’s what they were doing—because THEY WERE GIVING GLORY TO OTHER GODS, while at the same time, they were DRINKING THEIR INTOXICANT FROM THE VERY VESSELS that were dedicated to the purpose, and the use, in the temple FOR THE HONORING OF THE ONE TRUE GOD.

So we go on, and we find out, “Immediately and suddenly…” Now, this is God declaring Holy War. IMMEDIATELY AND SUDDENLY, GOD IS GIVING THIS DECLARATION, which I’m about to read, to that king. In other words the anger of God is kindled, the wrath of God is incited by their total dishonoring, and disrespecting, and disgracing Him in that behavior whereby they had taken consecrated vessels, and not only did they drink their wine to get drunk out of them, but they gave honor and glory to other gods. So they had offended the Almighty God.

“Immediately and suddenly there appeared the fingers of a man’s hand and wrote on the plaster of the wall opposite the candlestick [so exposed especially to the light] in the king’s palace, and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote. Then the color and the [drunken] hilarious brightness of the king’s face was changed, and his [terrifying] thoughts troubled and alarmed him; the joints and muscles of his hips and back gave way and his knees smote together.” So I guess his knees started knocking out of fear, and his back and his upper legs and all that just gave out from under him.

And then it says, “The king cried aloud [mightily] to bring in the enchanters or soothsayers, the Chaldeans [diviners], and the astrologers. The king said to the wise men of Babylon, Whoever will read this writing and show me the interpretation of it will be clothed with purple and have a chain of gold put about his neck and will be the third ruler in the kingdom. And all the king’s wise men came in, but they could not read the writing or make known to the king the interpretation of it.”

Now, it says here in a footnote, which I think is interesting, “For many people, it may be difficult to understand why all the wise men, the magicians, the soothsayers, the Chaldeans, and the astrologers were unable to translate a few simple words, especially when Daniel’s prescribed education in languages was the same as their own, and he had no difficulty translating. The answer is that any wise man who was present there could probably recognize the foreign scribed words, but only the uncompromising man of God, who knew God through daily fellowship and communion with Him, who was so dedicated to Him, that God could speak to him and through him, only such a man could tell what the words really meant. Blessed, happy, fortunate, prosperous, and enviable are those who dare to be a Daniel.”

So, basically, what it’s saying is that the interpretation only came to Daniel by God, and these others did not have a relationship with God because they were pagan, they worshiped a multitude of gods, they probably worshiped the gold, silver, iron, and wood, and stone gods themselves. So, THEY WERE ALL IDOLATERS, THEY DIDN’T KNOW WHAT THESE WORDS MEANT, AND THEY COULDN’T INTERPRET THEM.

So then it says, “Then King Belshazzar was greatly perplexed and alarmed and the color faded from his face, and his lords were puzzled and astounded.” Now, that is a pretty shocking sign that God gave, and it was the declaration of His war—because of what they were guilty of, of what it was that that king had commanded, and how they had dishonored and disgraced the Lord—not only by drinking from the vessels, but by honoring their delusional idol gods that were and are not gods.

So then it says, “Now the queen [mother], overhearing the exciting words of the king and his lords, came into the banquet house. The queen [mother] said, O king, live forever! Do not be alarmed at your thoughts or let your cheerful expression and the color of your face be changed.” So what she’s saying, “Oh son, you can carry on with your party, everything will be all right, after all, this isn’t the end of the world—just a hand appearing on the wall writing words.”

That’s a pretty shocking sign, a declaration, a time for war. God has His timing for everything. And even the heathen, the pagan, I believe are motivated for their own destruction—when God has had enough of them—that they will do those things that so dishonor and disgrace the Lord, that He, through His Holy War will bring an end to them. Now, we think Holy War has to be a multitude of people, has to be troops, has to be armies. No, it can be the hand of God—as we’re seeing here.

And then it says, “There is a man in your kingdom in whom is the Spirit of the holy God [or gods], and in the days of your father light and understanding and wisdom like the wisdom of the gods were found in him; and King Nebuchadnezzar, your father—the king, I say, your father—appointed him master of the magicians, enchanters or soothsayers, Chaldeans, and astrologers, Because an excellent spirit, knowledge, and understanding to interpret dreams, clarify riddles, and solve knotty problems were found in this same Daniel, whom the king named Belteshazzar. Now let Daniel be called, and he will show the interpretation.”

So, mother comes in with the solution, “Let’s call in the man of God, let’s call in the man of the God we don’t believe in, the God you have just mocked, and scoffed, and let’s call in the man who believes in that God.”

And then it says, “Then Daniel was brought in before the king. And the king said to Daniel, Are you that Daniel of the children of the captivity of Judah, whom the king my father brought out of Judah? I have heard of you, that the Spirit of the holy God [or gods] is in you and that light and understanding and superior wisdom are found in you.” So he’s addressing him respectfully. Why? He’s afraid because the fools that he brought in could not give him an answer, they could not give him an interpretation, they could not give him an explanation, and he was still frightened, even though mom came along with her words of comfort and reassurance, the fact remained that he still did not know the meaning of the writing on the wall.

There used to be an old saying that was, “It’s written on the wall.” And when you read the Bible, you find out what that means—that the very destiny was right there on the wall. It was written on the wall by the hand of God.

Then it goes on and it says, “Now the wise men, the enchanters, have been brought in before me that they might read this writing and make known to me the interpretation of it, but they could not show the interpretation of the matter.” So he’s confessing to Daniel the failure, the faultiness, the lack of wisdom and insight and understanding that his own entourage had. In other words, they were incapable of giving the interpretation.

Then it says, “But I have heard of you, that you can make interpretations and solve knotty problems. Now if you can read the writing and make known to me its interpretation, you shall be clothed with purple and have a chain of gold put around your neck and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom. Then Daniel answered before the king, Let your gifts be for yourself and give your rewards to another. However, I will read the writing to the king and make known to him the interpretation.”

So Daniel says, “Alright, I’ll do it, but I don’t want your stuff, I don’t want your things, I don’t want your treasures.” He said, “Let your rewards be for yourself.” In other words, what he’s saying there is, “You are going to get your just reward, you are going to get what you are worthy of Mr. Scoffer, Mr. Mocker, Mr. Proud Drunken Fool.” Now remember, the king is the fellow who was enjoying his final fiesta, in his mockery towards God. And here he is with this wine in his body, in his mind, and still experiencing the weaponry of God-fear. HE’S AFRAID.

Now, what has God told us? That He’s releasing in this Holy War the weapon of God-fear upon those who are worthy to receive it. Even though he was on the wine, and probably had plenty to drink, and was in a great mood of frivolity, and vanity, and mockery, he couldn’t get away from that God-fear because it was accompanying him, and it was upon him.

Now, when you’re drunk, you’re not in your right mind, but unfortunately for him, the drunkenness did not overwhelm the God-fear, and the soberness of that fear was upon him. Because not only did he have physical reactions, but HE WAS NOT AT PEACE, despite his mother’s comforting words, despite the fact that Daniel came there, despite the fact that none of his witchcraft workers could give him a just answer, he was still afraid…so he was HAUNTED BY GOD-FEAR. And then when he wants to buy Daniel off with all of those great rewards, Daniel said, “No, you keep your rewards.”

Then Daniel says, “O king, the Most High God gave Nebuchadnezzar your father a kingdom and greatness and glory and majesty…” Now, I want you to note that he says, “The MOST HIGH GOD gave Nebuchadnezzar…” So in other words, it wasn’t because Nebuchadnezzar was great, and famous, and glorious, and wondrous, it was because God gave it to him.

“And because of the greatness that He gave him, all peoples, nations, and languages trembled and feared before him. Whom he would he slew, and whom he would he kept alive; whom he would he set up, and whom he would he put down.” So, in other words, he had the power, given to him by God, of life and death—to put people up, and to put people down.

Then it says, “BUT when his heart was lifted up and his mind and spirit were hardened so that he dealt proudly, he was deposed from his kingly throne and his glory was taken from him…” He’s recounting to the son the demise of his father. And he says, “He was driven from among men, and his heart or mind was made like the beasts, and his dwelling was with the wild assess. He was fed with grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of the heavens until he learned and knew that the Most High God rules in the kingdom of men and that He appoints and sets over it whomever He will.”

Now, that should let us all know that even here in America, presidents are ordained of God—either for mercy, or for wrath. And so we think, “Well, you got to get out there and *hoorah* vote, and get out there and do this, get out there and do that. We did it, we’re the ones who won the campaign.” NO, IT’S APPOINTED BY GOD.

And then it says, “And you his son, O Belshazzar, have not humbled your heart and mind, though you knew all this [knew it and were defiant].” So here you go young rebel, punk, fool, drunkard, party boy: final fiesta. You’re showing off, you’re defaming God, you’re disgracing God, you’re drinking out of the very vessels that were dedicated to God.

He said, ‘You haven’t humbled yourself to God, even though you knew all of this. You knew what happened to your father, you knew how he was taken down, you knew how he had to confess that the most high God was the highest power source.’

But you knew that, and you, “have not humbled your heart and mind, though you knew all this [knew it and were defiant]. And you have lifted yourself up against the Lord of heaven, and the vessels of His house have been brought 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 gold, of bronze, iron, wood, and stone, which do not see or hear or know; but the God in Whose hand your breath is and Whose are all your ways you have not honored and glorified [but have dishonored and disgraced].”

So, you want to hear from Daniel? He is hearing the truth. He wanted to hear from all his witchcraft workers, he heard nothing—except that they couldn’t do it, they couldn’t translate it. Now, here is Daniel, the man of God, able, and present with the truth, and the truth is offensive, and THE TRUTH IS JUDGMENT UPON THE MAN’S SIN, AND THE TRUTH IS SEPARATING BETWEEN THE PRECIOUS AND THE VILE. And Belshazzar is found VILE because he has corrupted himself in his drunkenness, and in his defiance, and in his rebellion.

And it says, not only have you drunk wine from these vessels, but you have honored these false gods while you’re doing it. And you KNEW that the most high God was the one who brought down your father. YOU KNEW IT, AND YET YOU WOULDN’T HONOR HIM. You praised these other gods, you honored these other gods. At the very moment you were defiling the vessels of the most high God.

“Then was the part of the hand sent from the presence of [the Most High God], and this writing was inscribed. And this is the inscription that was written, MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN—numbered, numbered, weighed, divisions. This is the interpretation of the matter: MENE, God has numbered the days of your kingship and brought them to an end…” So, this is your end mocker, this is your end scoffer, this is your end party boy, this is it. You want to know what the writing is? This is what it says!

Then it says this is the interpretation, “TEKEL, You are weighed in the balances and are found wanting…” Then upharsin, the singular of that is, “PERES, Your kingdom and your kingship are divided and given to the Medes and Persians.” So in other words, because of this defiant act of dishonoring and disgracing the Lord that you knew was the one true God that brought your father down, that humbled your father until he became as a beast, and was living with the beasts, and was no more than a beast, and when he finally confessed the sovereignty and the majesty of the most high God, he was restored.

YOU KNEW ALL OF THAT, BUT YOU DISHONORED AND DISGRACED HIM IN YOUR DEBAUCHERY, in your drunkenness, in your big party and your show of rebellion. Your kingship is over, your kingdom is done, and your kingdom will be divided up, not unto your sons—if there were any—not to your daughters, not to your nephews, but it will be divided up where? Among the Medes and the Persians.

“Then Belshazzar commanded, and Daniel was clothed with purple and a chain of gold put about his neck, and a proclamation was made concerning him that he should be the third ruler in the kingdom.” So, the big show went on, the king made sure that he kept his promise to Daniel that he’d get his purple robe, that he’d get his gold chain, and that he would be made number 3 in the kingdom. But guess what? The kingdom was over.

So, we see that the king was a bit dull—in that he was only interested in his big show, his big party with his lords, putting on for the thousand that had come to his final fiesta, and he carried through with his final act of his regal domain in putting on the robe, and the chain, and all this on Daniel.

And then it says, “During that night Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans was slain.” So, that very night, he met with his death, it says he was SLAIN. It doesn’t say he died of a heart attack, it doesn’t say he went quietly in his sleep, it doesn’t say that his wife poisoned him, it says he was slain.

And then it says, “And Darius the Mede took the kingdom; he was about sixty-two years old.” So, when Daniel had said to him, “MENE, God has numbered the days of your kingship and brought them to an end…You are weighed in the balances and are found wanting…Your kingdom and your kingship are divided and given to the Medes and Persians.” That was God’s Holy War, God’s Holy Wrath, God’s act of His fist of vengeance upon that man.

Now, does God have weaponry that we know not of? Does God keep track of what men and women do?—especially pertaining towards Him, and especially when they have been given such an obvious demonstration—as Belshazzar was, through his father, through what had happened to his father—through the remembrance of that, and possibly he was even alive to witness that. And he went on in defiance and did what he did.

So, can we defy God and get by? No. Do we remain forever when we think we are Almighty in power and glory? No. CAN GOD BRING DOWN ANY KINGDOM, ANY NATION, ANY KING, ANY PRESIDENT, ANY PRIME MINISTER, ANY EMPEROR? YES. So, shall we mock God and get by? Never. Because why? Because we are in the time of God’s Holy War, and He is the most high God who is to be continually honored and glorified, and to be served. Amen.