Empty Escapes

Series: Among Lions | Week 4: Writing on the Wall

Read Daniel 5:1-17

1. What elements and activities were included in the feast that King Belshazzar hosted (verses 1-4)?
2. What was his reaction to the writing on the wall?
3. What did he offer Daniel was a reward, and what was Daniel’s response?

To understand this scene, it’s important to understand the context. The very night of this feast, the Mede and Persian armies were camped out less than 50 miles away, planning an attack against Babylon. Belshazzar would have known this. Yet instead of facing the threat, he chose to “numb out” with power, pleasure, and false religion.

In our own lives, we too can numb out in an effort to avoid pain, but ultimately, we’ll find ourselves with deeper pain and destruction if we don’t address the underlying problem. Addictions, accomplishments, temporary intimacy, and religious rules will only leave us empty in the end. Rather than numbing out, we’re called to address our heart issues at the root.

Is there a vice you turn to in order to numb out from hard things? What situations do you find yourself wanting an escape from most often? Be honest with God about what comes to mind. Ask Him to help you do the deep heart work that’s needed, and commit to seeking help from a wise friend or counselor if needed.

Want to go deeper? Use these verses as a guide for your prayer time. Be still before God, and pay attention to what comes to the surface as you pray these words.

Among Lions