Daniel 4:14 MEANING

Daniel 4:14
(14) Aloud--i.e., like a king's herald. (Comp. Daniel 3:4.)

Hew down.--The plural is here used, implying that several persons are employed in carrying out the order.

Verse 14. - He cried aloud, and said thus, Hew down the tree, cut off his branches, shako off his leaves, and scatter his fruit: let the beasts get away from under it, and the fowls from his branches. The Septuagint Version is, "And one called and said to him, Cut it down, and destroy it; for it is decreed by the Highest to root it out and destroy it." It is possible that abbey in the Greek was due to כֵן (kayn) being read as לו (lo). The phrase as it stands in the Greek is not unlike Revelation 14:18, "And another cried with a loud voice to him that had the sharp sickle." It is, therefore, equally possible that לו (lo) has been changed into כֵן (kayn). The latter part of the verse is more condensed, and therefore, by that, more probable; only the rooting out commanded seems to contradict the fact that it is also commanded to leave "one root of it." Theodotion is in much closer agreement with the Massoretic, save that the beasts, instead of being warned to depart from beneath the shadow of the tree, are to be shaken (σαλευθηῖωσαν) from beneath it, as are all the birds from its branches. The Peshitta is an accurate translation of the text of the Massoretes. A peculiarity to be observed in the Aramaic is that the verbs are in the plural, which is retained in Theodotion and the Peshitta. It seems difficult to understand this. Stuart's explanation ? which is practically that of Havernick and Hitzig - that the command is addressed by the עִיר ('eer) to his retinue, seems highly forced, as there has been no word of a retinue. Keil's and Kliefoth's view, that the plural is the impersonal, does not suit the circumstances. We have a suspicion that the plural is due to a mistake - thinking the watcher and the holy one were separate persons. The Septuagint, however, has the plural, which is all the more extraordinary that αὐτῷ is singular. The function assigned here to the angels must be observed. Here, as in the parables of our Lord, the angels are the instruments by whom the decrees of providence are executed. In our days angels are not believed in. It is possible that materialism has much of its advantage over us, in that we do not recognize the existence and activity of angelic forces among the agencies of nature and providence.

4:1-18 The beginning and end of this chapter lead us to hope, that Nebuchadnezzar was a monument of the power of Divine grace, and of the riches of Divine mercy. After he was recovered from his madness, he told to distant places, and wrote down for future ages, how God had justly humbled and graciously restored him. When a sinner comes to himself, he will promote the welfare of others, by making known the wondrous mercy of God. Nebuchadnezzar, before he related the Divine judgments upon him for his pride, told the warnings he had in a dream or vision. The meaning was explained to him. The person signified, was to be put down from honour, and to be deprived of the use of his reason seven years. This is surely the sorest of all temporal judgments. Whatever outward affliction God is pleased to lay upon us, we have cause to bear it patiently, and to be thankful that he continues the use of our reason, and the peace of our consciences. Yet if the Lord should see fit by such means to keep a sinner from multiplying crimes, or a believer from dishonouring his name, even the dreadful prevention would be far preferable to the evil conduct. God has determined it, as a righteous Judge, and the angels in heaven applaud. Not that the great God needs the counsel or concurrence of the angels, but it denotes the solemnity of this sentence. The demand is by the word of the holy ones, God's suffering people: when the oppressed cry to God, he will hear. Let us diligently seek blessings which can never be taken from us, and especially beware of pride and forgetfulness of God.He cried aloud,.... Or, with strengths; (l) being a mighty angel, and that he might be heard far and near:

and said thus, hew down the tree; remove this mighty monarch from his throne; take away his government from him: this is said to fellow angels employed in the affairs of Providence, and the execution of them, to bring about an event so momentous:

and cut off his branches; take away his provinces, each of the parts of his dominion, from him:

shake off his leaves: cause his deputy governors to shake off their allegiance to him:

and scatter his fruit; the revenues of his vast empire, and let others take them:

let the beasts get away from under it, and the fowls from his branches; those that have either voluntarily betook themselves to him for protection; or have been carried captive by him, and have lived under his shadow, whether of the more barbarous nations, or more civilized, as the Jews; let them take the opportunity of withdrawing from him, and returning to their own lands; see Jeremiah 51:9.

(l) "in virtute", Montanus; "cum robore", Gejerus; "fortier", Cocceius, Michaelis; "strenue", Junius & Tremellius, Broughtonus.

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