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him, Thus shall it be done to the man whom the king delighteth to honor.

7. Then the king said to Haman, Make haste, and take the apparel and the horse, as thou hast said, and do even so to Mordecai the Jew, that sitteth at the king's gate: let nothing fail of all that thou hast spoken. Then took Haman the apparel and the horse, and arrayed Mordecai, and brought him on horseback through the street of the city, and proclaimed before him, Thus shall it be done unto the man whom the king delighteth to honor. And Mordecai came again to the king's gate.

8. But Haman hasted to his house mourning, and having his head covered. And Haman told Zeresh his wife, and all his friends, every thing that had befallen him. Then said his wise men and Zeresh his wife unto him, If Mordecai be of the seed of the Jews, before whom thou hast begun to fall, thou shalt not prevail against him, but shalt surely fall before him. And while they were yet talking with him, came the king's chamberlains, and hasted to bring Haman unto the banquet that Esther had prepared. So the king and Haman came to banquet with Esther the queen. And the king said again unto Esther on the second day at the banquet of wine, What is thy petition, queen Esther ? and it shall be granted thee: and what is thy request ? and it shall be performed, even to the half of the kingdom.

9. Then Esther the queen answered and said, If I have found favor in thy sight, king, and if it please the king, let my life be given me at my petition, and my people at my request: for we are sold, I and my people, to be destroyed, to be slain, and to perish. But if we had been sold for bondmen and bondwomen, I had held my tongue, although the enemy could not countervail the king's damage. Then the king Ahasue'rus answered and said unto Esther the queen, Who is he, and where is he, that durst presume in his heart to do so ? And Esther said, The adversary and enemy is this wicked Haman.

10. Then Haman was afraid before the king and the queen. And the king, arising from the banquet of wine in his wrath, went into the palace garden : and Haman stood np to make request for his life to Esther the queen; for he saw that there was evil determined against him by the king. And one of the chamberlains said before the king, Behold, also, the gallows fifty cubits high, which Haman had made for Mordecai, who had spoken good for the king, standeth in the house of Haman. Then the king said, Hang him thereon. So they hanged Haman on the gallows that he had prepared for Mordecai.

LESSON XXXII.

TRIAL AND CONSTANCY OF THE THREE PIOUS HEBREWS.

[Dan. iii. 1.] 1. Neb'U-CHAD-Nez'zar the king made an image of gold, whose height was threescore cubits, and the breadth thereof six cubits: he set it up in the plain of Dura, in the province of Babylon. Then Nebuchadnezzar the king sent to gather together the princes, the governors, and the captains, the judges, the treasurers, the counsellors, the sheriffs, and all the rulers of the provinces, to come to the dedication of the image which Nebuchadnezzar the king had set up. Then the princes, the governors, and captains, the judges, the treasurers, the counsellors, the sheriffs, and all the rulers of the provinces, were gathered together unto the dedication of the image that Nebuchadnezzar the king had set up; and they stood before the image.

2. Then a herald cried aloud, To you it is commanded, O people, nations, and languages, that at what time ye hear the sound of the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, dulcimer, and all kinds of music, ye fall down and worship the golden image, that Nebuchadnezzar the king hath set up: and whoso falleth not down and worshippeth, shall the same hour be cast into the midst of a burning fiery furnace.

3. Wherefore, at that time, certain Chaldeans came near, and accused the Jews. They spake and said to the king Nebuchadnezzar, O king, live forever! Thou, O king, hast made a decree, that every man shall fall down and worship the golden image: and whoso falleth not down and worship peth, that he should be cast into the midst of a burning fiery furnace. There are certain Jews, whom thou hast set over the affairs of the province of Babylon, Sha'drach, Meshach, and Ab-ed'ne-go; these men, o king, have not regarded thee: they serve not thy gods, nor worship, the golden image which thou hast set up.

4. Then Nebuchadnezzar in his rage and fury commanded to bring Shadrach, Meshach, and Ab-ed'ne-go. Then they brought these men before the king. Nebuchadnezzar spake and said unto them, Is it true, O Sha'drach, Me'shach, and Ab-ed'ne-go, do not ye serve my gods, nor worship the golden image which I have set up? Now if ye fall down, and worship the image which I have made, well. but if ye worship not, ye shall be cast, the same hour, into the midst of a burning fiery furnace; and who is that god that shall deliver you out of my hand ? Sha'drach, Me'shach, and Ab-ed'ne-go answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God, whom we serve, is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.

5. Then was Nebuchadnezzar full of fury, and the form of his visage was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego : therefore he spake, and commanded that they should heat the furnace one seven times more than it was wont * to be heated. And he commanded the most mighty men that were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace. Then these men were bound in their coats, their hosen, and their hats, and their other garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. Therefore because the king's commandment was urgent, and the furnace exceeding hot, the flame of the fire slew those men that took Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego. And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.

6. Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astonied, and rose up in haste, and spake, and said unto his counsellors, Did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire ? They answered and said unto the king, True, O king. He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the son of God. Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the mouth of the burning fiery furnace, and spake, and said, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, ye servants

up

* Pron. wunt.

of the most high God, come forth, and come hither! Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego came forth of the midst of the fire.

7. And the princes, governors, and captains, and the king's counsellors, being gathered together, saw these men, upon whose bodies the fire had no power, nor was a bair of their head singed, neither were their coats changed, nor the smell of fire had passed on them. Then Nebuchadnezzar spake, and said, “ Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in him, and have changed the king's word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God. Therefore I make a decree, That every people, nation, and language, which speak any thing amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made a dunghill ; because there is no other God that can deliver after this sort.” Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, in the province of Babylon.

LESSON XXXIII.

THE HAND-WRITING ON THE WALL.

[Daniel v. 1.) 1. BEL-SHAZ'ZAR the king made a great feast to a thousand of his lords, and drank wine before the thousand. Belshazzar, whiles he tasted the wine, commanded to bring the golden and silver vessels, which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the temple which was in Jerusalem, that the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, might drink therein. Then they brought the golden vessels that were taken out of the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, drank in them. They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone:

2. In the same hour came forth fingers of a man's hand, and wrote over-against the candlestick upon the plaster of the wall of the king's palace and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote. Then the king's countenance was changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints of his loins were loosed, and his knees smote one against another. The king cried aloud to bring in the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers. And the king spake, and said to the wise men of Babylon, Whosoever shall read his writing, and show me the interpretation thereof, shall be clothed with scarlet, and have a chain of gold about his neck, and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom. Then came in all the king's wise men : but they could not read the writing, nor make known to the king the interpretation thereof. Then was king Belshazzar greatly troubled, and his countenance was changed in him, and his lords were astonied.

3. Now the queen, by reason of the words of the king and his lords, came into the banquet-house: and the queen spake and said, O king, live forever ! let not thy thoughts trouble thee, nor let thy countenance be changed: there is a man in thy kingdom, in whom is the spirit of the holy gods; and, in the days of thy father, light and understanding, and wisdom, like the wisdom of the gods, was found in him, whom the king Nebuchadnezzar, thy father, made master of the magicians, astrologers, Chaldeans, and soothsayers; forasmuch as an excellent spirit, and knowledge, and understanding, interpreting of dreams, and showing of hard sentences, and dissolving of doubts, were found in the same Dan'i-el, whom the king named Bel'te-shaz'zar. Now let Dan'i-el be called, and he will show the interpretation.

4. Then was Dan'i-el brought in before the king. : And the king spake and said unto Dan'i-el, Art thou that Dan'i-el, which art of the children of the captivity of Judah, whom the king my father brought out of Jewry? I have even heard of thee, that the spirit of the gods is in thee, and that light, and understanding, and excellent wisdom is found in thee. And now the wise men, the astrologers, have been brought in before me, that they should read this writing, and make known unto me the interpretation thereof.

But they could not show the interpretation of the thing; and I have heard of thee, that thou canst make interpretations, and dissolve doubts. Now if thou canst read the writing, and make known to me the interpretation thereof, thou shalt be clothed with scarlet, and have a chain of gold about thy neck, and shalt be the third ruler in the kingdom.

5. Then Daniel answered and said before the king, Let

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