King to all the peoples?

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jwithnell

Moderator
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How does one deal with references to an earthly king being sovereign to all the peoples, nations, etc.? I.e., Daniel 4:1. Surely they'd have been aware of Egypt and possibly kingdoms further west in the Mediterranean.

Is this a turn of phrase to say God delivered his people into the hands of a powerful king? Bravado on Nebuchadnezer's part? An exaggeration? Thoughts?
 

Ryan&Amber2013

Puritan Board Junior
I'm not sure, but it makes me think of Jesus saying the mustard seed is the smallest of all the seeds. Maybe it just has to do with that specific region, like the mustard seed being the smallest in use in that culture?
 

Tom Hart

Puritan Board Senior
There is no doubt that people of the time were aware of much further lands than those under Nebuchadnezzar's rule. Carthage, a Phoenician city, is said to have been founded in 814 B.C., and the Phoenicians are thought to have gone as far as the British Isles. It's more than likely that commerce would have made distant lands such as those of the ancient Chinese known to the Babylonians as well. In fact, some associate Isaiah's mention of Sinim with China (Isaiah 49:12).

But there were plenty of nearer kingdoms, such as Ethopia, which were not under Babylonian rule. So the question cannot be whether they were not aware of other principalities and peoples.

I'd guess that this is merely a form of address to a great ancient near eastern king.
 

jwithnell

Moderator
Staff member
Thanks, guys!

One of the narratives of Daniel is God's establishing and bringing down rulers of the earth. Perhaps the overly broad claims for Nebuchadnezzar has to do with this. And I agree that the southern kingdoms would have been known, but am not sure about the ones further west in the Mediterranean.
 

Cymro

Puritan Board Junior
It is an expression that speaks of the geographical extent of a nation’s rule. So as in Luke 2:1, “that all the world should be taxed.” That is, where the Roman jurisdiction held sway.
 

TylerRay

Puritan Board Graduate
Surely an American should have no difficulty grasping the concept of such hyperbole, given the titling of the "World Series"!
Don't forget--there are plenty of Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, and Japanese folks that play in the World Series!
 
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