Day 8

Nebuchadnezzar’s Proclamation

from the Daniel reading plan

Daniel 4:1-37, Proverbs 16:18, 1 Corinthians 1:28-29

BY Kaitie Stoddard

At the core of our faith, we Christians believe that the Triune God is the one, true ruler of the universe. At least that is what we confess with our mouths. But if we’re honest, it’s not always how we order our lives, is it? If you don’t struggle with remembering that only God is God, consider yourself blessed with humility. But if you’re anything like me, it’s easy to slip into acting like you’re in control of your successes and failures—taking credit when things go well, spinning your wheels when things unravel.

It’s the original sin in the garden of Eden (Genesis 3), and the one that still haunts us today. When Eve grabbed the fruit, she grabbed at God’s throne. Despite the fact that she was living in paradise with her perfect mate, she wanted more. And we do the same: all too often, we grab at God’s power and we claim God’s glory.

Not in an obvious way, though. Not like King Nebuchadnezzar who literally claimed he built Babylon by his “vast power” for his “majestic glory” (Daniel 4:30). Cue the eye roll. That guy was so full of himself, it’s hard to feel bad for him when he ends up eating grass (v.25).

While we probably wouldn’t say anything that arrogant out loud, we harbor the same sin of pride in our hearts. Maybe that’s why things like the story of Nebuchadnezzar and the proverb’s warning that “pride comes before destruction, and an arrogant spirit before the fall” (Proverbs 16:18) always seem to spook me a little; because I know I’m a sinner, and I don’t want to wind up eating grass too.

Thank goodness, God is gracious. In His plan for Nebuchadnezzar, we see God intended to show the king mercy. God left the root intact when He chopped Nebuchadnezzar down like a tree. Daniel interpreted that to mean that God would restore Nebuchadnezzar as soon as he turned from his sin and proclaimed God’s rule (Daniel 4:26). This story is a reminder that God is more compassionate than we can imagine. Because we are covered by the blood of Jesus, “He has not dealt with us as our sins deserve” (Psalm 103:10).

In remembering God’s graciousness to me, I can’t help but remember what a better Lord He is over my life than I could ever be. We can serve our sinful selves or we can serve the most loving God. When we think about it that way, it’s an easy choice. God’s ways are so much better than our own (Isaiah 55:8–9). We can learn the hard way and find ourselves face down in the grass, or we can choose each day to proclaim the truth that “his dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation” (Daniel 4:34). Therefore, “let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord” (1Corinthians 1:31).

Post Comments (50)

50 thoughts on "Nebuchadnezzar’s Proclamation"

  1. Jescalyn Vazquez says:

    I love how God not only leaves the roots in the ground, but also protects it with iron and bronze waiting for the day King Nebuchadnezzar acknowledges God’s power.

  2. Laura Tusa says:


  3. Eryn Murray says:

    When God humbles you, you can’t help but praise Him

  4. Beth says:

    Hi Doris- I just want to let you know that you are not alone. I, too, am struggling with America’s leadership. There is nothing Christian about it. I have been a “Christian” for almost 30 years, nowhere near perfect, sinning daily, needing Jesus every moment. I am now embarrassed to be part of an evangelical group. Yes, it needs to be politely and calmly discussed because it is no longer about politics, it is about being Jesus to the oppressed. And the way our government is operating encourages us as citizens to treat others as subhuman. This needs to start being discussed right here, because this is the job of the church and we are failing miserably.

    1. L V says:

      I think this is really well stated and I just wanted to say I agree with you wholeheartedly and I’m encouraged just to see someone saying this!

  5. Doris says:

    Claire, not bringing politics into this study. I said as individuals it applies to all of us. But this was a leader and God Himself pronounced this judgment on him. I was saying it’s crippling me as a believer to see other believers not stand for righteousness and upholds and still praise one that shows so much pride and arrogance. I expect if you teach me to live right according to scripture then don’t hold up for someone else who is not. The standard is for all of us. And when it seems to be a double standard, it need to be addressed. Maybe it will help a babe in Christ or someone else who has the same question. Not politics dear, only understanding. Righteousness is righteousness and unrighteousness is unrighteousness, no matter who it applies too. This will be my last post on she reads truth , I’ll keep my questions and my attempt to grow in understanding to myself. Claire , you be blessed!

  6. Saicha E.Crawford says:

    LOVING this plan! Honestly, I don’t know if I have ever read Daniel 4 before. Such a crazy chapter. Learning so much!

  7. Desiree says:

    Doris, It is definitely a mystery! Luckily God has it all figured out.

  8. Makenzie Benish says:

    Is it wrong to say I’m surprised at how much I’m getting out of this reading plan? I didn’t expect Daniel to be so interesting! Nebuchadnezzar’s stubbornness is really standing out to me. How many times does god have to perform miracles and show him mercy before he gives God the glory AND sticks with it? To this point it seems like his declarations of god being the one and only true God and glorifying heaven are fleeting. Oh, what similarities I can draw between myself and he. Lord help me to always remember what you have done for me and to humble me daily.

    1. Claire B says:

      I agree! I almost didn’t start it because I thought I had done this one a couple of times. Much better than anticipated.

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