While growing up, I attended Sunday school. There, we learned what I’d call the highlights of the biblical stories. One of them is the story of Nebuchadnezzar. It turns out Nebuchadnezzar was a real man, in case the reader is wondering. The thing about Nebuchadnezzar and Sunday school, though, is that I was always left with the impression that he was just a bad guy.
Even the fairly recent TV series about the Bible missed this great opportunity to show redemption. They left us with the impression that Daniel snubbed Nebuchadnezzar and the king lived out the remainder of his life insane. This is certainly not true.
Read chapter 4 of Daniel. It is written, not by Daniel, but by Nebuchadnezzar. It is his testimony and confession. In it he explains what happened to him for his seven years of insanity. In it he declares Yaweh the one true God. I will not be too surprised to see Nebuchadnezzar in Heaven. No doubt, Nebuchadnezzar did some terrible things, but also have no doubt that he can and may have been redeemed. Just like you can be. The same way the worst criminal can be or the same way the nicest person you’ve met needs to be.