Daniel 2:2
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
Then the king commanded that the magicians, the enchanters, the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans be summoned to tell the king his dreams. So they came in and stood before the king.

King James Bible
Then the king commanded to call the magicians, and the astrologers, and the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans, for to shew the king his dreams. So they came and stood before the king.

American Standard Version
Then the king commanded to call the magicians, and the enchanters, and the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans, to tell the king his dreams. So they came in and stood before the king.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Then the king commanded to call together the diviners and the wise men, and the magicians, and the Chaldeans: to declare to the king his dreams: so they came and stood before the king.

English Revised Version
Then the king commanded to call the magicians, and the enchanters, and the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans, for to tell the king his dreams. So they came in and stood before the king.

Webster's Bible Translation
Then the king commanded to call the magicians, and the astrologers, and the sorcerers, and the Chaldeans, to show the king his dream. So they came and stood before the king.

Daniel 2:2 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

General Exhortation to Observe Justice and Righteousness in their Dealings. - Ezekiel 45:9. Thus saith the Lord Jehovah, Let it suffice you, ye princes of Israel: desist from violence and oppression, and observe justice and righteousness, and cease to thrust my people out of their possession, is the saying of the Lord Jehovah. Ezekiel 45:10. Just scales, and a just ephah, and a just bath, shall ye have. Ezekiel 45:11. The ephah and the bath shall be of one measure, so that the bath holds the tenth part of the homer, and the ephah the tenth part of the homer: after the homer shall its standard be. Ezekiel 45:12. And the shekel shall have twenty gerahs; twenty shekels, five and twenty shekels, fifteen shekels, shall the mina be with you. - The exhortation in Ezekiel 45:9 is similar to that in Ezekiel 44:6, both in form and substance. As the Levites and priests are to renounce the idolatry to which they have been previously addicted, and to serve before the Lord in purity and holiness of life, so are the princes to abstain from the acts of oppression which they have formerly practised, and to do justice and righteousness; for example, to liberate the people of the Lord from the גּרשׁות. גּרוּשׁה is unjust expulsion from one's possession, of which Ahab's conduct toward Naboth furnished a glaring example (1 Kings 21). These acts of violence pressed heavily upon the people, and this burden is to be removed (הרים מעל). In Ezekiel 45:10-12 the command to practise justice and righteousness is expanded; and it is laid as a duty upon the whole nation to have just weights and measures. This forms the transition to the regulation, which follows from Ezekiel 45:13 onwards, of the taxes to be paid by the people to the prince to defray the expenses attendant upon the sacrificial worship. - For Ezekiel 45:10, see Leviticus 19:36 and Deuteronomy 25:13. Instead of the hin (Leviticus 19:36), the bath, which contained six hins, is mentioned here as the measure for liquids. The בּת is met with for the first time in Isaiah 5:10, and appears to have been introduced as a measure for liquids after the time of Moses, having the same capacity as the ephah for dry goods (see my Bibl. Archol. II pp. 139ff.). This similarity is expressly stated in Ezekiel 45:11. Both of them, the ephah as well as the bath, are to contain the tenth of a homer (לשׂאת, to carry, for להכיל, to contain, to hold; compare Genesis 36:7 with Amos 7:10), and to be regulated by the homer. Ezekiel 45:12 treats of the weights used for money. The first clause repeats the old legal provision (Exodus 30:13; Leviticus 27:25; Numbers 3:47), that the shekel, as the standard weight for money, which was afterwards stamped as a coin, is to contain twenty gerahs. The regulations which follow are very obscure: "twenty shekels, twenty-five shekels, fifteen shekels, shall the mina be to you." The mina, המּנה, occurs only here and in 1 Kings 10:17; Ezra 2:69; and Nehemiah 7:71-72, - that is to say, only in books written during the captivity of subsequent to it. If we compare 1 Kings 10:17, according to which three minas of gold were used for a shield, with 2 Chronicles 9:16, where three hundred (shekels) of gold are said to have been used for a similar shield, it is evident that a mina was equal to a hundred shekels. Now as the talent (כּכּר) contained three thousand (sacred or Mosaic) shekels (see the comm. on Exodus 38:25-26), the talent would only have contained thirty minas, which does not seem to answer to the Grecian system of weights. For the Attic talent contained sixty minas, and the mina a hundred drachms; so that the talent contained six thousand drachms, or three thousand didrachms. But as the Hebrew shekel was equal to a δίδραχμον, the Attic talent with three thousand didrachms corresponded to the Hebrew talent with three thousand shekels; and the mina, as the sixtieth part of the talent, with a hundred drachms or fifty didrachms, ought to correspond to the Hebrew mina with fifty shekels, as the Greek name μνᾶ is unquestionably derived from the Semitic מנה. The relation between the mina and the shekel, resulting from a comparison of 1 Kings 10:17 with 2 Chronicles 9:16, can hardly be made to square with this, by the assumption that the shekels referred to in 2 Chronicles 9:16 are not Mosaic shekels, but so-called civil shekels, the Mosaic half-shekel, the beka, בּקע, having acquired the name of shekel in the course of time, as the most widely-spread silver coin of the larger size. A hundred such shekels or bekas made only fifty Mosaic shekels, which amounted to one mina; while sixty minas also formed one talent (see my Bibl. Archol. II pp. 135, 136).

But the words of the second half of the verse before us cannot be brought into harmony with this proportion, take them how we will. If, for example, we add the three numbers together, 20 + 25 + 15 shekels shall the mina be to you, Ezekiel would fix the mina at sixty shekels. But no reason whatever can be found for such an alteration of the proportion between the mina and the talent on the one hand, or the shekel on the other, if the shekel and talent were to remain unchanged. And even apart from this, the division of the sixty into twenty, twenty-five, and fifteen still remains inexplicable, and can hardly be satisfactorily accounted for in the manner proposed by the Rabbins, namely, that there were pieces of money in circulation of the respective weights of twenty, twenty-five, and fifteen shekels, for the simple reason that no historical trace of the existence of any such pieces can be found, apart from the passage before us.

(Note: It is true that Const. l'Empereur has observed, in the Discursus ad Lectorem prefixed to the Paraphrasis Joseph. Jachiadae in Danielem, that "as God desired that justice should be preserved in all things, He noticed the various coins, and commanded that they should have their just weight. One coin, according to Jewish testimony, was of twenty shekels, a second of twenty-five, and a third of fifteen shekels; and as these together made one mina, according to the command of God, in order that it might be manifest that each had its proper quantity, He directed that they should be weighed against the mina, so that it might be known whether each had its own weight by means of the mina, to which they ought to be equal." But the Jewish witnesses (Judaei testes) are no other than the Rabbins of the Middle Ages, Sal. Jarchi (Raschi), Dav. Kimchi, and Abrabanel, who attest the existence of these pieces of money, not on the ground of historical tradition, but from an inference drawn from this verse. The much earlier Targumist knows nothing whatever of them, but paraphrases the words thus: "the third part of a mina has twenty shekels; a silver mina, five and twenty shekels; the fourth part of a mina, fifteen shekels; all sixty are a mina; and a great mina (i.e., probably one larger than the ordinary, or civil mina) shall be holy to you;" from which all that can be clearly learned is, that he found in the words of the prophet a mina of sixty shekels. A different explanation is given by the lxx, whose rendering, according to the Cod. Vatic. (Tischendorf), runs as follows: πέντε σίκλοι, πέντε καὶ σίκλοι, δέκα καὶ πεντήκοντα σίκλοι ἡ μνᾶ ἔσται ὑμῖν; and according to the Cod. Al.: οἱ πεντε σικλοι πεντε και ὁι δεκα σικλοι δεκα και πεντηκοντα κ.τ.λ. Boeckh (Metrol. Untersuch. pp. 54ff.) and Bertheau (Zur Gesch. der Isr. pp. 9ff.) regard the latter as the original text, and punctuate it thus: οἱ πέντε σίκλοι πέντε, καὶ οἱ δέκα σίκλοι δέκα, καὶ πεντήκοντα σίκλοι ἡ μνᾶ ἔσται ὑμῖν, - interpreting the whole verse as follows: "the weight once fixed shall remain unaltered, and unadulterated in its original value: namely, a shekel shall contain ten gerahs; five shekels, or a five-shekel piece, shall contain exactly five; and so also a ten-shekel piece, exactly ten shekels; and the mina shall contain fifty shekels." But however this explanation may appear to commend itself, and although for this reason it has been adopted by Hvernick and by the author of this commentary in his Bibl. Archol., after a repeated examination of the matter I cannot any longer regard it as well-founded, but am obliged to subscribe to the view held by Hitzig and Kliefoth, "that this rendering of the lxx carries on the face of it the probability of its resting upon nothing more than an attempt to bring the text into harmony with the ordinary value of the mina." For apart from the fact that nothing is known of the existence of five and ten shekel pieces, it is impossible to get any intelligible meaning from the words, that five shekels are to be worth five shekels, and ten shekels worth ten shekels, as it was self-evident that five shekels could not be worth either four shekels or six.)

And the other attempts that have been made to explain the difficult words are no satisfactory. The explanation given by Cocceius and J. D. Michaelis (Supplem. ad lex. p. 1521), that three different minas are mentioned, - a smaller one of fifteen Mosaic shekels, a medium size of twenty shekels, and a large one of twenty-five-is open to the objection justly pointed out by Bertheau, that in an exact definition of the true weight of anything we do not expect three magnitudes, and the purely arbitrary assumption of three different minas is an obvious subterfuge. The same thing applies to Hitzig's explanation, that the triple division, twenty, twenty-five, and fifteen shekels, has reference to the three kinds of metal used for coinage, viz., gold, silver, and copper, so that the gold mina was worth, or weighed, twenty shekels; the silver mina, twenty-five; and the copper mina, fifteen, - which has no tenable support in the statement of Josephus, that the shekel coined by Simon was worth four drachms; and is overthrown by the incongruity in the relation in which it places the gold to the silver, and both these metals to the copper. - There is evidently a corruption of very old standing in the words of the text, and we are not in possession of the requisite materials for removing it by emendation.

Daniel 2:2 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

See on ch.

Daniel 1:20 And in all matters of wisdom and understanding, that the king inquired of them...

Daniel 4:6 Therefore made I a decree to bring in all the wise men of Babylon before me...

Daniel 5:7 The king cried aloud to bring in the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers. And the king spoke...

Genesis 41:8 And it came to pass in the morning that his spirit was troubled; and he sent and called for all the magicians of Egypt...

Exodus 7:11 Then Pharaoh also called the wise men and the sorcerers: now the magicians of Egypt...

Deuteronomy 18:10-12 There shall not be found among you any one that makes his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that uses divination...

Isaiah 8:19 And when they shall say to you, Seek to them that have familiar spirits, and to wizards that peep, and that mutter...

Isaiah 19:3 And the spirit of Egypt shall fail in the middle thereof; and I will destroy the counsel thereof: and they shall seek to the idols...

Isaiah 47:12,13 Stand now with your enchantments, and with the multitude of your sorceries, wherein you have labored from your youth...

Cross References
Genesis 41:8
So in the morning his spirit was troubled, and he sent and called for all the magicians of Egypt and all its wise men. Pharaoh told them his dreams, but there was none who could interpret them to Pharaoh.

Exodus 7:11
Then Pharaoh summoned the wise men and the sorcerers, and they, the magicians of Egypt, also did the same by their secret arts.

Esther 1:13
Then the king said to the wise men who knew the times (for this was the king's procedure toward all who were versed in law and judgment,

Isaiah 19:3
and the spirit of the Egyptians within them will be emptied out, and I will confound their counsel; and they will inquire of the idols and the sorcerers, and the mediums and the necromancers;

Isaiah 47:12
Stand fast in your enchantments and your many sorceries, with which you have labored from your youth; perhaps you may be able to succeed; perhaps you may inspire terror.

Isaiah 47:13
You are wearied with your many counsels; let them stand forth and save you, those who divide the heavens, who gaze at the stars, who at the new moons make known what shall come upon you.

Daniel 1:4
youths without blemish, of good appearance and skillful in all wisdom, endowed with knowledge, understanding learning, and competent to stand in the king's palace, and to teach them the literature and language of the Chaldeans.

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