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Belshazzar’s Feast

Posted on Thursday, March 26, 2009 in Jewish Law, lamentations, prayers

Thus spake Isaiah:

Thy sons that thou shat beget
They shall be taken away,
And be eunuchs
In the palace of the King of Babylon
Howl ye, howl ye, therefore:
For the day of the Lord is at hand!

Bu the waters of Babylon
By the waters of Babylon
There we sat down; yea, we wept
And hanged our harps upon the willows.

For they that wasted us
Required of us mirth;
They that carried us away captive
Required of us a song.
Sing us one of the songs of Zion.

How shall we sing the Lord’s song
In a strange land?

If I forget thee, O Jerusalem,
Let my right hand forget her cunning.
If I do not remember thee,
Let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth.
Yeah, if I prefer not Jerusalem above my chief joy.

By the waters of Babylon
The we sat down; yea, we wept.

O daughter of Babylon, who are to be destroyed,
Happy shall he be that taketh thy children
And dasheth them against a stone.
For with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down
And shall be found no more at all.

Babylon was a great city,
Her merchandise was of gold and silver,
Of precious stones, of pearls, of fine linen,
Of purple, silk and scarlet,
All manner vessels of ivory,
All manner vessels of most precious wood,
Of brass, iron and marble,
Cinnamon, odours and ointments,
Of frankincense, wine and oil,
Fine flour, wheat and beasts,
Sheep, horses, chariots, slaves,
And the souls of men.

In Babylon
Belshazzar the King
Made a great feast–
Made a feast to a thousand of his lords,
And drank wine before the thousand.

Belshazzar, whiles he tasted the wine,
Commanded us to bring the gold and silver vessels;
Yea! The golden vessels, which his father, Nebuchadnezzar,
Had taken out of the temple that was in Jerusalem.

He commanded us to bring the golden vessels
Of the temple of the house of God,
That the King, his Princes, his wives
And his concubines might drink therein.

Then the King commanded us:
Bring ye the cornet, flute, sackbut, psaltery
And all kinds of music.
They drank wine again
And then spake the King:

Praise ye the God of Gold
Praise ye the God of Silver
Praise ye the God of Iron
Praise ye the God of Stone
Praise ye the God of Wood
Praise ye the God of Brass

Thus in Babylon, the mighty city,
Belshazzar the King made a great feast,
Made a feast to a thousand of his lords,
And drank wine before the thousand.

Belshazzar whiles he tasted the wine
Commanded us to bring the gold and silver vessels
That his Princes, his wives and his concubines
Might rejoice and drink therein.

After they praised their strange gods,
The idols and the devils,
False Gods who can neither see nor hear,
Called they for the timbrel and the pleasant harp,
To extol the glory of the King.
Then they pledged the King before the people,
Crying, Thou, O King, art King of Kings;
O King, live forever…

And in that that same hour as they feasted
Came forth fingers of a man’s hand
And the King saw
The part of the hand that wrote–

And this was the writing that was written:

MENE, MENE TEKEL, UPHARSIN
THOU ARE WEIGHED IN THE BALANCE
AND FOUND WANTING.

In that night was Belshazzar the King slain,
And his Kingdom divided.

Then sing aloud to God our strength;
Make a joyful noise unto the  God of Jacob.
Take a psalm, bring hither the timbrel.
Blow up the trumpet in the new moon,
Blow up the trumpet in Zion
For Babylon is fallen, fallen.
Alleluia!

Then sing aloud to God our strength;
Make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob,
While the Kings of the Earth lament,
And the merchants of the earth
Weep, wail and rend the raiment.
They cry, Alas, Alas, that great city,
In one hour is her judgment come!

The trumpeters and pipers are silent,
And the harpers have ceased to harp,
And the light of a candle shall shine no more…

Then sing aloud to God our strength.
Make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob.
For Babylon the Great is fallen.
Allelulia!

Adapted from the words of the Holy Bible.

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