Daniel 5:1-30  Divine Graffiti


Daniel Ch. 5 is one of those Stories that unless it was in the Bible –you would never believe it!

A) Nearly 25 years have passed since the events of chapter 4 and over 70 years since chapter 1.


B) Daniel now advanced in years, is a senior statesman in Babylon.


C) Neb is gone and Belshazzar is now King in Babylon the last of the Chaldean kings of Babylon,



For years critics have said that the book of Daniel was inaccurate because they believed Belshazzar never existed--that there was no historical record of such a man.

A) However when archaeologists discovered what is called "The Nabo/nidus Cylinder," in the late 1800’s history acquired its first known record of Belshazzar.


C) Although he was a co- regent with his father, Nabo/nidus, Belshazzar was sitting in the seat of royalty the night Babylon fell.


B) Approximately thirty-six years old at the time of Daniel 5, Belshazzar was decadent, depraved, idolatrous, and unworthy to rule.


                                                    RD V.1-4

So Belshazzar throws a party for 1,000 of his lords and their wives – possible 2,000 pp there.

The archaeologist Robert Koldewey, during his excavation of the palace of Babylon from the time of Belshazzar, found a large room, fifty-five feet wide and one hundred sixty-nine feet long with plaster walls—

a significant detail that fits with the biblical record.


At the end of the room was a niche in the wall where he believed the king sat so he would be elevated before the people

(The Excavations at Babylon [London: MacMillan, 1914], pp. 88-89, 103-4).


A) They are getting smashed – decide to defile the God of the Hebrews – bring the temple vessels


B) Like in the Story of Samson – { Sin led to him being Blind – bound – grinding

1) Blind you / bind you/ grind you


C) Called for the Champion – make a Mockery

1) Pillars – brought down the house


D) That is what is happening here –Making Mockery

This house is also going to come down! 


E) As God Suddenly interrupts the party in dramatic fashion


                                     RD V.5-12

I pause here to make a point made a century ago by Joseph Parker, the famous London preacher.

A) Daniel wasn’t invited to the party!


B) When the world throws a wild party, the children of God are not invited.

1) We don’t fit in and our values would just be a nuisance when the world wants to party.


C) But let a marriage break up, or let cancer hit, or let the children get in trouble, or the career hit the rocks, and who do they call?    Christian


Daniel wasn’t invited to the party, but when God intervened and no one had the answer, suddenly Daniel is the one man the king wants to hear from.
A) We may never know our influence until a crisis comes.


B) Current Crisis: the world is taking note of the Church!


C) Personal encouragement!

1) You may be stuck in an office or a classroom or a factory or a neighborhood or a family gathering where you are the only Christian.


D) And you may feel overlooked and taken for granted, or possibly ridiculed and misunderstood.

1) Hang in there:  God is setting you up to be used!

                                     RD V.13-30

Amazing story – Babylon was brought down in one night.

A) It is not the only time that the finger of God was seen or felt on an occasion


B) The First time we read of the finger of God is in Exodus Ch. 8


C) God sends plagues on the Egyptians because Pharaoh will not let the pp go


First plague – turns the Nile river – their life source into blood.   Fish died / it stank

A) Pharaoh’s magicians couldn’t reverse it  - but they could duplicate it – turned another water source to blood


B) Took Pharaoh seven days to ask Moses to change it

1) Talk about Stubborn


B) 2nd Plague: Frogs – again they duplicated it {If I am Pharaoh – I shoot those guys -


C) Frogs everywhere – Take it away ! When ? Tomorrow

1) One more night with the frogs


D) One more night with my sin!   SAD




A) The interesting thing about this plague is that the Egyptians HATED lice


B) Remember, they deified almost every living thing around them  { BUT - not lice


C)) Lice were hated by the Egyptians So much so that the ancient historian, Heroditus, tells us:


 “The priests of Egypt would shave their entire body from head to toe every-other day in order to keep lice from infesting them and thus protect themselves from the pollution of lice.” Heroditus


D) Pharaoh’s magicians and Astrologers couldn’t take away the lice – couldn’t copy it 


E) And When they were unsuccessful, they said to Pharaoh - Exodus 8 V. 19   This is the finger of God!


But When Pharaoh heard this proclamation from HIS OWN magicians, we are told Pharaoh's heart grew hard, & he did not heed them,

A) He wouldn't respond to it


B) The finger of God was pointing to the Egyptians and they DID NOT respond to it 


C) Found guilty – condemned!

The SECOND time that we read of the finger of God is in Exodus 31:18

And when He had made an end of speaking with him on Mount Sinai, He gave Moses two tablets of the Testimony, tablets of stone, written with the finger of God.”


B) God's finger wrote the very commandments that Moses came down with from Mt. Sinai

1) It is the commandments that are written with the finger of God that point at you and me in judgment


C) You see, man has this false idea that he is really pretty good

1)    That we are all basically O.K. and will make it into heaven as long as we don't blow it too badly


D) God gave the Law.... written with His own finger..... to dispel the idea that        we are righteous enough to make it into heaven


Romans 3:19  Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.


It is the Law of God which points the finger at you and says that you are going to be judged

A) The Law says the same thing to us – that God said to Belshazzar – weighed and found wanting

B) All have sinned and fallen Short of the glory of God!



Galatians 3:24  “Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.”


So we have three Old Testament instances of the finger of God

A) The finger of God  in Egypt....

               The Finger of God in Sinai...

                      The Finger of God in Babylon


B) In each of those  the finger of God  related to JUDGEMENT


IN the NT we have a couple of other references to the Finger of God!

A) First in Luke  11: Where Jesus is seen casting a Demon out of a man that was deaf & dumb


B) But the Religious leaders who were Jealous of Jesus & His popularity

 1) Accused Him of casting out Demons by the Power of Satan


C) Jesus refuted that accusation by basically saying that – would mean that Satan was Divided against himself – STUPID


D) Then Jesus made this statement : -  Luke 11: 20  "But if I cast out demons with the finger of God, surely the kingdom of God has come upon you.

Now it that instance the finger of God is equated w/ His Power over Satan forces & Demons

A)  I love that Great – comfort – We often think of Satan as such a strong one – Yet he can’t w/stand the finger of our God!!!!


My friends, you are no match for Satan, and when he wants to fight you just run to your elder Brother, who is more than a match for all the devils in hell.

  -- D.L. Moody,     Stand strong in Power of his might


B)  Power of the Gospel – Preaching of Christ


The preaching of Christ is the whip that flogs the devil. The preaching of Christ is the thunderbolt, the sound of which makes all hell shake.

-- Charles Haddon Spurgeon,



There is ONE MORE instance in which we see the finger of God

A) That is found in the John 8/ Story of a woman caught in adultery

                               TURN  to John 8  


                            RD V.1-4


B)So Jesus was in the temple teaching when The Pharisees brought this woman to Jesus & said that she was  caught in the very act of adultery/


John 8:5-6  "Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do You say?"

  If they were so interested in righteous judgment, where was the man?

6  This they said, testing Him, that they might have something of which to accuse Him.


A) Here was the Dilemma - If Jesus said: Stone her".... He would no longer be seen as gracious and merciful to the common pp who enjoyed being around him.


B) Jesus was the Polar opposite of the rigid legalistic religious leaders of his day.


C) Sad today that some in ministry choose popularity over truth – not say the hard things

1) Want to be liked – want everyone to be happy


D) Not Jesus – But If Jesus said: "Let her go".....  they would accuse Him of being a Law breaker and thus unholy


E) They thought that they had Him -  But Jesus didn't say a word


John 8:6b But Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear.


Instead With His finger.... the finger of God ..... because He is God..... He began to write in the dust


John 8:7-8  So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, "He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first."    8  And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground.


A)  Now the Bible does not say What Jesus wrote, -

1)  But from their reaction, it would seem very possible that Jesus was writing the names of the men holding stones,


B)  And with each name perhaps he listed a time and a place and an act that they had done in violation of the Law of God- FOR WE READ


John 8:9  Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.                


C) Jesus then looked at the woman and said

     John 8:10   "Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?"


11  She said, "No one, Lord." And Jesus said to her, "Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more


Jesus didn’t deny her sin but he didn’t condemn her either – exhorted her to go and sin no more

                     BE FREE

Note the contrast:  

A) The finger of God  through Moses showed JUDGEMENT, but the finger of God  seen in Jesus Christ showed JOY


B) The Finger of God  through Moses ... who represents the Law and       religion and rules.... showed DEATH


C) The Finger of God  through Jesus.... who represents Grace and Mercy.... showed LIFE


Everyone of us have a decision to make/ Christian and non-Christian alike

A) You can try to keep a set of rules to be right with God


B) But IF you try to do that, THEN you will fell the finger of God pointing at you to CONDEMN and JUDGE you


C) Message to you will be the same as it was to Belshazzar – Weighed in the balances - …wanting !


D) That is one route


You can humble yourself before Jesus Christ

A) IF you do, THEN the FInger of God  will point at you to INVITE you to come for forgiveness


B) And when you come - You will here those words - Your sins are forgiven.... Go your way and sin no more



Christians - Be careful

A) May God help you to NEVER subtly go back to the Law


B) Thinking that our RIGHTEOUSNESS before God is based upon our          personal devotion and perfomance

     1) Going to church... Tithing... Reading.... Witnessing...


C) The Word says that we are RIGHTEOUS RIGHT NOW- IN CHRIST

      1) God NEVER looks at you apart from the righteousness of Jesus Christ


D) God ALWAYS sees you POSITIONALLY as being in Christ and thus as righteous and holy


E) With Jesus weighed in the Balances and found to be just right – RIGHTEOUS