Archive of Pastor Darby's Sermon Notes, transcribed from his original typewritten documents
HANDWRITING ON THE WALL
Nov 16, 1969 am
THIS GREAT CHAPTER GIVES US A VERY COMMON EXPRESSION OF IMPENDING DOOM
- Belshazzar saw the handwriting on the wall, and it sobered him and filled him with fear
- America has warning signs on every hand, but she is so busy in revelry few see the warnings
- Daniel survived the death and destruction of that terrible night, and ...
... if we will seek the truth's of God's message in this passage we can escape the destruction of this age.
I. BELSHAZZAR'S GREAT FEAST Dan 5:1-4
There is nothing that could touch the great oriental feasts - shows the best and the worst-
A. THE GREAT EMPIRE, BABYLON, THIS FEAST SHOWED THE GREATNESS AND THE SIN OF THIS EMPIRE
- This was more than just another kingdom, it was an attempt at a great empire utopia- worldwide
- This was a great federation- Government, economy, education, language, and also world church!
- The Nimrod Revival is in America today- Dr. M.R. Dehaan pointed abstractly to it years ago
B. THE GREAT FEAST, BELSHAZZAR, v. 1,2 THE SECOND IN COMMAND WAS RULER OF THE EMPIRE
- Oriental feasts were great, but this one outdid them all. They had a war outside to forget!
- This was a drunken orgy- not the modesty of Queen Esther's day, but a wild, forget-it-all night.
- Most great civilizations have fallen because of thrill-seeking - in drunkenness, immorality- idol
C. THE GREAT PROFANITY, THE GOLD OF JEHOVAH, v.3,4 BROUGHT OUT TO BE USED FOR MOCKERY
- Other thrills could not satisfy; they had to turn to the worst kind of profanity - try everything
- God did not mind Nebuchadnezzar capturing and storing the vessels, but this was deliberate mockery
- These sacred vessels were sanctified to God. Belshazzar did this to mock the God that said- Shalt Not.
Now- parsonages are taxed to pay for the teaching of vice and vandalism- least of sins of today.
II. THE HANDWRITING ON THE WALL Dan 5:5-28
God will be mocked till His longsuffering turns to wrath- then drastic things happen fast!
A. THE GREAT ALARM v.5 SOMETHING HAPPENED THAT FRIGHTENED EVERYONE AND DEMANDED ATTENTION
- This great event would not be a surprise today- TV, etc. - but then it turned to terror v.6
- He called in his Brain Busters - smart but ungodly men- v.8,9 their inability scared them more
- The absent Queen Mother reminded him of Daniel- 11,12 who was not at this drunken feast - separated
B. THE GREAT REBUKE v.13-24 DANIEL WAS AN 80 YEAR OLD MAN, AND DID NOT HESITATE TO SPEAK PLAINLY
- Daniel pointed Belshazzar to his great history, v.20,21 how God had spoken before and Belshazzar knew
- Daniel pointed out Belshazzar's sin, v.22 a lack of humility pride, and mocking God, not glorifying Him
- Daniel told Belshazzar that the message was from God- v.24, Daniel had refused Belshazzar's gifts - v.17 - and spoke
C. THE GREAT MESSAGE v. 25-28 THE MYSTERIOUS MESSAGE WAS INTERPRETED RATHER QUICKLY BY DANIEL
- Mene - means NUMBERED AND LACKING - Daniel applied this to the kingdom- it is finished- public sin
- Tekel - means WEIGHED AND WANTING - This was applied to the personal life of Belshazzar - sin makes empty
- Peres-Upharsin - tense different, but means GIVEN AWAY - plural, and Medes and Persians storming gates then
The hand of God then was believed, but what today could make men see their folly?
III. THE TERRIBLE JUDGEMENT v.30 Dan 5:30
God uses human hands to minister His love, or to deliver His wrath- many ready to do latter.
A. THE GREAT DEATH - v.30 MEN FEAR PHYSICAL DEATH, BUT THERE IS A SPIRITUAL DEATH FAR WORSE
- The words of Daniel were still echoing in the hall when the enemy stormed the city- death!
- The bloody death of the king and his sobered, but scared helpless, guests was violent- powerful
- But the earthly judgment of this man was nothing compared with what he will yet face - eternity
B. TODAY THE SAME MESSAGE FROM THE SAME GOD IS NEEDED TO WARN OUR NATION TO REPENT
- The words of our Vice President were true- great power in few men- America is brainwashed, exploited, tampered.
- The glory of our space conquests show what disciplined minds can do, and praying men lead
- But the demoralizing riots, perversion of justice, glorification of sex and drugs, moral brats!
C. IF THE HANDWRITING TELLS THAT THE NATION CANNOT BE SAVED, HOW CAN WE SURVIVE AS DANIEL DID?
- The church is torn by dissention, disloyalty, no discipline- so I turned to other jobs to lead.
- But why try anymore - success is corrupted - so with the enemy inside the city- try other tack
- Daniel 12:3 "Turn many to righteousness" - hard, not gentle task, but only worthwhile one left?
But it would take the discipline of a dictator to get moral discipline to launch program.
SINCE THERE IS NO DISCIPLINE SOCIALLY, WILL YOU ACCEPT SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINE TO SAVE SOME?
- Discipline yourself enough to meet Christ's conditions of salvation- confess Him as Saviour
- Accept the discipline of this church as a member - Bible preaching Bible practicing - can you?
- Accept the discipline of a church program to become a real witness for Jesus, and to share what Jesus has done and can do in your heart - only wise step today!