Daniel 5:6

6 his face turned pale,[a] and his thoughts so terrified him that his hip joints shook and his knees knocked together.

Daniel 5:6 Meaning and Commentary

Daniel 5:6

Then the kings countenance changed
Or, "his brightness" {l}; his ruddy countenance, his florid looks, his gay airs; all his jollity and mirth, that appeared in his face, were changed into paleness, sadness, and confusion: and his thoughts troubled him;
what should be the meaning of this; perhaps he might immediately fear it presaged ruin and destruction to him; the sins of his former life might at once come into his thoughts, and those particularly he had now been guilty of; his luxury and intemperance, his idolatry and profanation of the vessels of the sanctuary, which his conscience might accuse him of, and give him great distress and trouble: so that the joints of his loins were loosed;
or, "the girdles of his loins" F13; which were loosed or broke, through the agitation he was in; or he was all over in a sweat, so that he was obliged to loose his girdle; or, as persons in great fear and consternation, he was seized with a pain in his back; it opened as it were; nor could he hold his urine; as Grotius and others; see ( Isaiah 45:1 ) , where this seems to be prophesied of: and his knees smote one against another;
as is the case of persons in a great tremor, or under a panic. "Et subito genua intremuere timore".--Ovid.


F12 (yhwyz) "splendores ejus", Montanus, Vatablus, Michaelis.
F13 (hurx yrjq) "cingula lumborum ejus", Pagninus, Junius & Tremellius, Cocceius.

Daniel 5:6 In-Context

4 They drank the wine and praised their gods made of gold and silver, bronze, iron, wood, and stone.
5 At that moment the fingers of a man's hand appeared and began writing on the plaster of the king's palace wall next to the lampstand. As the king watched the hand that was writing,
6 his face turned pale, and his thoughts so terrified him that his hip joints shook and his knees knocked together.
7 The king called out to bring in the mediums, Chaldeans, and astrologers. He said to these wise men of Babylon, "Whoever reads this inscription and gives me its interpretation will be clothed in purple, have a gold chain around his neck, and have the third highest position in the kingdom."
8 So all the king's wise men came in, but none could read the inscription or make known its interpretation to him.

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Lit writing, Verse 6: the king's brightness changed
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