Daniel 2:32-43

32 1The head of this image was of fine gold, 2its chest and arms of silver, its middle and 3thighs of bronze,
33 4its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of clay.
34 As you looked, a stone was cut out 5by no human hand, and it struck the image on its feet of iron and clay, and 6broke them in pieces.
35 Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver, and the gold, all together were broken in pieces, and became 7like the chaff of the summer threshing floors; and the wind carried them away, so that 8not a trace of them could be found. But the stone that struck the image became 9a great mountain 10and filled the whole earth.
36 "This was the dream. Now we will tell the king its interpretation.
37 You, O king, 11the king of kings, to whom 12the God of heaven 13has given the kingdom, the power, and the might, and the glory,
38 and into whose hand he has given, wherever they dwell, the children of man, 14the beasts of the field, and the birds of the heavens, making you rule over them all--you are 15the head of gold.
39 16Another kingdom inferior to you shall arise after you, and yet a third kingdom 17of bronze, 18which shall rule over all the earth.
40 And 19there shall be a fourth kingdom, strong as iron, because iron 20breaks to pieces and shatters all things. And like iron that crushes, it shall 21break and crush all these.
41 And as you saw 22the feet and toes, partly of potter's clay and partly of iron, it shall be a divided kingdom, but some of the 23firmness of iron shall be in it, just as you saw iron mixed with the soft clay.
42 And as the toes of the feet were partly iron and partly clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly brittle.
43 As you saw the iron mixed with soft clay, so they will mix with one another in marriage,[a] but they will not hold together, just as iron does not mix with clay.

Daniel 2:32-43 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO DANIAL 2

The subject of this chapter is a dream which Nebuchadnezzar had dreamed, but had forgot; upon which he calls his magicians and astrologers together, to tell him it, and the interpretation of it; threatening them with death if they did not, and promising them great rewards and honour if they did, Da 2:1-6, they urge the unreasonableness of the demand, and the impossibility of the thing; which so highly incensed the king, that he ordered their immediate destruction, Da 2:7-13, Daniel and his companions being in danger, he goes in to the king, and desires time, and he would show him what he had dreamed; which being granted, he spent it in prayer to God, Da 2:14-18, and the thing being revealed to him, he gave thanks to God, Da 2:19-23, and being introduced to the king, he both told him his dream, and the interpretation of it; which concerned the four monarchies of the world, and the everlasting kingdom of the Messiah, Da 2:24-45, upon which he was highly honoured, and greatly promoted by the king, Da 2:46-49.

Daniel 2:32-43 In-Context

30 But as for me, this mystery has been revealed to me, not because of any wisdom that I have more than all the living, but in order that the interpretation may be made known to the king, and that you may know the thoughts of your mind.
31 "You saw, O king, and behold, a great image. This image, mighty and of exceeding brightness, stood before you, and its appearance was frightening.
32 The head of this image was of fine gold, its chest and arms of silver, its middle and thighs of bronze,
33 its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of clay.
34 As you looked, a stone was cut out by no human hand, and it struck the image on its feet of iron and clay, and broke them in pieces.
35 Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver, and the gold, all together were broken in pieces, and became like the chaff of the summer threshing floors; and the wind carried them away, so that not a trace of them could be found. But the stone that struck the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth.
36 "This was the dream. Now we will tell the king its interpretation.
37 You, O king, the king of kings, to whom the God of heaven has given the kingdom, the power, and the might, and the glory,
38 and into whose hand he has given, wherever they dwell, the children of man, the beasts of the field, and the birds of the heavens, making you rule over them all--you are the head of gold.
39 Another kingdom inferior to you shall arise after you, and yet a third kingdom of bronze, which shall rule over all the earth.
40 And there shall be a fourth kingdom, strong as iron, because iron breaks to pieces and shatters all things. And like iron that crushes, it shall break and crush all these.
41 And as you saw the feet and toes, partly of potter's clay and partly of iron, it shall be a divided kingdom, but some of the firmness of iron shall be in it, just as you saw iron mixed with the soft clay.
42 And as the toes of the feet were partly iron and partly clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly brittle.
43 As you saw the iron mixed with soft clay, so they will mix with one another in marriage, but they will not hold together, just as iron does not mix with clay.
44 And in the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed, nor shall the kingdom be left to another people. It shall break in pieces all these kingdoms and bring them to an end, and it shall stand forever,
45 just as you saw that a stone was cut from a mountain by no human hand, and that it broke in pieces the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver, and the gold. A great God has made known to the king what shall be after this. The dream is certain, and its interpretation sure."

Cross References 23

  • 1. [ver. 38]
  • 2. [ver. 39]
  • 3. [ver. 39]
  • 4. [ver. 40]
  • 5. [Daniel 8:25; Job 34:20; Lamentations 4:6; 2 Corinthians 5:1]
  • 6. ver. 35, 40, 44, 45; Isaiah 8:9; [Matthew 21:44; Luke 20:18]
  • 7. Psalms 1:4
  • 8. [Revelation 20:11]
  • 9. [Isaiah 2:2]
  • 10. [Psalms 80:9]
  • 11. Ezra 7:12; Ezekiel 26:7
  • 12. ver. 19
  • 13. Daniel 5:18; [Ezra 1:2]; See ver. 21
  • 14. Daniel 4:21; Jeremiah 27:6
  • 15. [ver. 32]
  • 16. [ver. 32; Daniel 5:28, 31]
  • 17. [See ver. 38 above]
  • 18. [Daniel 7:6]
  • 19. [Daniel 7:7, 23]
  • 20. See ver. 34
  • 21. See ver. 34
  • 22. [ver. 33]
  • 23. [See ver. 40 above]

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Aramaic by the seed of men