One night, Nebuchadnezzar had a frightening dream. He called his wise men in to tell him what it meant. But none of them could explain his dream. Finally, the king spoke to Daniel.
Nebuchadnezzar told Daniel: ‘In my dream, I saw a tree. It grew so tall that it reached the sky. It could be seen from anywhere on earth. It had beautiful leaves and lots of fruit. Animals rested in its shade, and birds made their nests in its branches. Then an angel came down from heaven. He called out: “Chop the tree down, and cut off its branches. But leave the stump with its roots in the ground, and put bands of iron and copper around it. The heart of the tree will change from that of a human to that of a beast, and seven times will pass over it. All people will learn that God is Ruler and that he can give a kingdom to whomever he wants.”’
Jehovah revealed to Daniel what the dream meant. When Daniel understood the dream, he became frightened. He said: ‘O king, I wish that this dream was about your enemies, but it is about you. The big tree that was chopped down is you. You will lose your kingdom, and you will eat grass in the field just like a wild animal. But because the angel said to leave the stump with its roots, you will become king again.’
A year later, Nebuchadnezzar was walking on the flat roof of his palace, admiring Babylon. He said: ‘Look at this magnificent city I have built. See how great I am!’ As he was speaking, a voice from heaven said: ‘Nebuchadnezzar! Now you have lost your kingdom.’
At that moment, Nebuchadnezzar lost his mind and became like a wild animal. He was forced to leave his palace and live with the wild animals in the field. Nebuchadnezzar’s hair grew long like an eagle’s feathers, and his nails were like a bird’s claws.
After seven years had passed, Nebuchadnezzar became normal again and Jehovah made him king of Babylon. Then Nebuchadnezzar said: ‘I praise Jehovah, the King of the heavens. Now I know that Jehovah is Ruler. He humbles proud people, and he can give a kingdom to whomever he wants.’
“Pride is before a crash, and a haughty spirit before stumbling.”—Proverbs 16:18