5:2 While under the influence 1 of the wine, Belshazzar issued an order to bring in the gold and silver vessels – the ones that Nebuchadnezzar his father 2 had confiscated 3 from the temple in Jerusalem 4 – so that the king and his nobles, together with his wives and his concubines, could drink from them. 5 5:3 So they brought the gold and silver 6 vessels that had been confiscated from the temple, the house of God 7 in Jerusalem, and the king and his nobles, together with his wives and concubines, drank from them. 5:4 As they drank wine, they praised the gods of gold and silver, bronze, iron, wood, and stone.
5:26 This is the interpretation of the words: 8 As for mene 9 – God has numbered your kingdom’s days and brought it to an end.
1 tn Or perhaps, “when he had tasted” (cf. NASB) in the sense of officially initiating the commencement of the banquet. The translation above seems preferable, however, given the clear evidence of inebriation in the context (cf. also CEV “he got drunk and ordered”).
3 tn Or “taken.”
5 sn Making use of sacred temple vessels for an occasion of reveling and drunkenness such as this would have been a religious affront of shocking proportions to the Jewish captives.
6 tc The present translation reads וְכַסְפָּא (vÿkhaspa’, “and the silver”) with Theodotion and the Vulgate. Cf. v. 2. The form was probably accidentally dropped from the Aramaic text by homoioteleuton.
7 tn Aram “the temple of the house of God.” The phrase seems rather awkward. The Vulgate lacks “of the house of God,” while Theodotion and the Syriac lack “the house.”
8 tn Or “word” or “event.” See HALOT 1915 s.v. מִלָּה.
9 tn The Aramaic term מְנֵא (mÿne’) is a noun referring to a measure of weight. The linkage here to the verb “to number” (Aram. מְנָה, mÿnah) is a case of paronomasia rather than strict etymology. So also with תְּקֵל (tÿqel) and פַרְסִין (farsin). In the latter case there is an obvious wordplay with the name “Persian.”