The well-known story of the writing on the wall that occurred during Belshazzar's Feast is told in the Book of Daniel. Nebuchadnezzar had died, and King Belshazzar had replaced him. He was as proud and rebellious as Nebuchadnezzar had once been, but he did not, like Nebuchadnezzar, repent and turn to God before his death.
As Belshazzar celebrated in his palace, armies from Media and Persia, commanded by Cyrus, the king of Persia's son, were approaching Babylon. But Belshazzar thought he was safe within the walls of his strong city.
During the feast, Belshazzar brought out the holy vessels which Nebuchadnezzar had taken from God's temple in Jerusalem, and poured wine into them, and praised their idols, and dishonored God. While they were feasting, Belshazzar looked up to the wall of the room where he and his princes and nobles were sitting, and he saw the fingers of a man's hand writing upon the wall. He could not tell who was writing or what the words said. Daniel was sent for, and Belshazzar asked him to interpret the words. Daniel said the words were, "Mene, Mene, Tekel, Peres, Upharsin." When asked what they meant, Daniel went on to say, "This is the interpretation: Mene, God has numbered thy kingdom, and finished it; Tele, thou art weighed in the balances, and found wanting; Peres, Upharsin, thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians."
Belshazzar clothed Daniel in scarlet, gave him a chain of gold, and proclaimed him ruler in the kingdom; and then the feast went on. The king and his guests did not take Daniel or God's words seriously. The next day the armies of the Medes and Persians invaded Babylon and killed King Belshazzar.
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