Babylon's End

Study Guide

Power has passed from Nebuchadnezzar to Belshazzar; however, the new king does not learn from his predecessor, and he comes under God’s judgment. Daniel, who has fallen into obscurity, remains humble, faithful, and willing to serve God on his terms. As kingdoms rise and fall, God continues the work of advancing his Kingdom, which will crush all others.
  1. Belshazzar receives God’s judgment because he treats as common what God has set apart as holy. Consider what Scripture says is holy—marriage, the church, worship, serving the vulnerable. In what ways have you treated any of these things as common?

  2. When things go wrong in your life, where do you typically turn for answers first (research, experts, friends, etc.)? What does that indicate about your view of God?

  3. Even though both Nebuchadnezzar and Belshazzar commit evil deeds, God’s judgment falls on Belshazzar more swiftly because he has more information. Why is this a warning to those of us who know the Bible well? How does this relate to the idea of pursuing God’s Kingdom rather than consuming biblical content?

  4. Are you in a season of life where you feel forgotten by God? Or are you in a season of life where you are prone to forget God? What does it look like to humble yourself and obey God in the things he has put before you?

Key Points
  • After Belshazzar takes power and treats as common what God has made holy, he comes under God’s judgment.

  • There is greater judgment for Belshazzar than there was for Nebuchadnezzar because he has the wisdom of the past. In the same way, those of us who know the truth of God’s Word have greater accountability.

  • Daniel has fallen from power and lives in obscurity. However, even when the king offers him reward, he does not desire it. Daniel is content to serve God humbly.

  • Ironically, the Babylonian king’s last act before his kingdom falls is to elevate Daniel, a Jewish exile.

  • No matter what appears to be happening in the world around us, God is at work—humbling the proud, exalting the humble, and making his name great.

Other Scripture References

Scripture: Daniel 5:1-31