Daniel 4:24
This is the interpretation, O king, and this is the decree of the most High, which is come upon my lord the king:
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(24) Which is come upon.—See Note on Daniel 4:13.

Daniel 4:24-26. This is the interpretation, O king, &c. — We may observe that Daniel informs the king with the greatest tenderness, and most respectful terms, of the sad reverse of condition that was to happen to him. They shall drive thee from men — In the Chaldee and Hebrew the plural active, they shall do, signifies no more than, thus it shall be, be the cause what it may. The meaning seems to be, that Nebuchadnezzar should be punished with insanity, which should so deprave his imagination, while he yet retained his memory, and, perhaps, his reason in some intervals, as that he should fancy himself to be a beast, and should live as such, till his heart, that is, his apprehension, appetite, or likings, should be changed from those of a man to those of a beast. To eat grass as oxen signifies to live upon the herbs of the field; for the original word signifies any kind of field-herb as well as grass. Till thou know that the most high God ruleth, &c. — It appears from what is here said, that this judgment was inflicted on Nebuchadnezzar on account of his pride or haughtiness, and his making no acknowledgment of a Divine Providence ordering and governing the affairs of the world; but attributing the acquisition of all his great power and vast dominion to his own prudence and valour, instead of acknowledging it as the gift of the most high God. And whereas they commanded to leave the stump, &c., thy kingdom shall be sure unto thee — There shall be no other king chosen during thy affliction, but thou shalt again receive thy kingly power, and reign as before. After that thou shalt have known that the heavens do rule — The heavens are here put for the God of the heavens.

4:19-27 Daniel was struck with amazement and terror at so heavy a judgment coming upon so great a prince, and gives advice with tenderness and respect. It is necessary, in repentance, that we not only cease to do evil, but learn to do good. Though it might not wholly prevent the judgment, yet the trouble may be longer before it comes, or shorter when it does come. And everlasting misery will be escaped by all who repent and turn to God.This is the decree of the Most High - Daniel here designs evidently to direct the attention of the monarch to the one living and true God, and to show him that he presides over all. The purpose of the vision was, in a most impressive way, to convince the king of his existence and sovereignty. Hence, Daniel says that all this was in accordance with his "decree." It was not a thing of chance; it was not ordered by idol gods; it was not an event that occurred by the mere force of circumstances, or as the result of the operation of secondary laws: it was a direct Divine interposition - the solemn purpose of the living God that it should be so. Nebuchadnezzar had represented this, in accordance with the prevailing views of religion in his land, as a "decree of the Watchers" Daniel 4:17; Daniel, in accordance with his views of religion, and with truth, represents it as the decree of the true God.

Which is come upon my Lord the king - The decree had been previously formed; its execution had now come upon the king.

24. decree of the Most High—What was termed in Da 4:17 by Nebuchadnezzar, "the decree of the watchers," is here more accurately termed by Daniel, "the decree of the Most High." They are but His ministers. By saying these words,

my lord the king, he endeavours to sweeten the bitterness of this cup of God’s displeasure as much as he can.

This is the interpretation, O king,.... Of this part of the dream, namely, what follows in the two next verses:

and this is the decree of the most High; called before the decree of the watchers, Daniel 4:17, and is no other than the decree of that sovereign and absolute Being, whose purposes are unfrustrable:

which is come upon my lord the king; the decree had passed concerning him, and would be most certainly fulfilled: and, because of the certainty of it, it is represented as if it was; for it would shortly and surely come upon him, exactly as it was determined, and by the dream signified.

This is the interpretation, O king, and this is the decree of the most High, which is come upon my lord the king:
24. and it is the decree of the most High, &c.] cf. Daniel 4:17 a.

Verse 24. - This is the interpretation, O king, and this is the decree of the Most High, which is come upon my lord the king. The passage in the Seventy which is parallel with this is partly in the last clause of the previous verse and partly in the verse that occupies a similar place to this in the Septuagint text, "The judgments of the great God shall come upon thee, and the Most High and his angels assail thee (κατατρέχουσιν ἐπὶ σὲ)." The change of tense here indicates that the second clause is an alternative rendering, brought into the text from the margin. In this marginal note meta has been taken as "assail," and malka, "O king," has been, by transposition of the two final letters, read mela'k, "angel." Theodotion and the Peshitta agree with the Massoretic text. The respectful tone in which Daniel addresses Nebuchadnezzar in the received text is to be observed; it is utterly alien to the boastful tone Judaism was afterwards accustomed to impute to its old saints. That there is no reference to the watchers or to their decree in this is imputed to Daniel's recognition of its true source; but in the Septuagint there is nothing equivalent to the statement in ver. 17. The fact that it is omitted here confirms the suspicion against it which we expressed in regard to the earlier verse. Daniel 4:24Daniel interprets to the king his dream, repeating only here and there in an abbreviated form the substance of it in the same words, and then declares its reference to the king. With vv. 17 (Daniel 4:20) and 18 (Daniel 4:21) cf. vv. 8 (Daniel 4:11) and 9 (Daniel 4:12). The fuller description of the tree is subordinated to the relative clause, which thou hast seen, so that the subject is connected by הוּא (Daniel 4:19), representing the verb. subst., according to rule, with the predicate אילנא. The interpretation of the separate statements regarding the tree is also subordinated in the relative clauses to the subject. For the Kethiv רבית equals רביתּ, the Keri gives the shortened form רבת, with the elision of the third radical, analogous to the shortening of the following מטת for מטת. To the call of the angel to "cut down the tree," etc. (Daniel 4:20, cf. Daniel 4:10-13), Daniel gives the interpretation, Daniel 4:24, "This is the decree of the Most High which is come upon the king, that he shall be driven from men, and dwell among the beasts," etc. על מטא equals Hebr. על בּוא. The indefinite plur. form טרדין stands instead of the passive, as the following לך יטעמוּן and מצבּעין, cf. under Daniel 3:4. Thus the subject remains altogether indefinite, and one has neither to think on men who will drive him from their society, etc., nor of angels, of whom, perhaps, the expulsion of the king may be predicated, but scarcely the feeding on grass and being wet with dew.
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