Daniel 2 29 “As Your Majesty was lying there, your mind turned to things to come, and the revealer of mysteries showed you what is going to happen. 30 As for me, this mystery has been revealed to me, not because I have greater wisdom than anyone else alive, but so that Your Majesty may know the interpretation and that you may understand what went through your mind. ...
36 This was the dream, and now we will interpret it to the king.

Who is the 'we'? Why the sudden change from 'me' to 'we'?

  • 1
    Thanks. After reading an answer, I made some more modification.
    – Tony Chan
    Jul 5 '20 at 21:04

[Dan 2:17 KJV] 17 Then Daniel went to his house, and made the thing known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions:

[Dan 2:18 KJV] 18 That they would desire mercies of the God of heaven concerning this secret; that Daniel and his fellows should not perish with the rest of the wise [men] of Babylon.

[Dan 2:23 KJV] 23 I thank thee, and praise thee, O thou God of my fathers, who hast given me wisdom and might, and hast made known unto me now what we desired of thee: for thou hast [now] made known unto us the king's matter.

[Dan 2:49 KJV] 49 Then Daniel requested of the king, and he set Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, over the affairs of the province of Babylon: but Daniel [sat] in the gate of the king.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible


This is the dream; and we will tell the interpretation thereof before the king - Daniel here speaks in his own name, and in the name of his companions. Hence, he says, “we will tell the interpretation.” It was in answer to their united supplications Daniel 2:18, that this meaning of the vision had been made known to him; and it would not only have been a violation of the rules of modesty, but an unjust assumption, if Daniel had claimed the whole credit of the revelation to himself. Though he was the only one who addressed the king, yet he seems to have desired that it might be understood that he was not alone in the honor which God had conferred, and that he wished that his companions should be had in just remembrance. Compare Daniel 2:49.

  • Good, concise answer. +1. I wish more answer came to the point so neatly.
    – Dottard
    Jul 5 '20 at 20:57

Mal.ka - go.dam - NE.MAR - u.pis.reh - hel.ma - de.nah .... king the - before - WE WILL TELL - and the interpretation of it - dream the - This is...

Reading from right to left, in preferred English: This is the dream and the interpretation of it, WE WILL TELL, before the king.

NE.MAR...verb-Qal-imperfect...first person common plural.

The WE here, (in Dan 2:36), is in sharp contrast to the WE in Dan 2:4,7, where we see the Chaldeans - apart from the magicians, the conjurers and the sorcerers (see verse 2) - are before the king, imploring him to tell the dream to them, so that they (the WE) can declare the interpretation. In 2:36, the WE, it would seem, is referring to Daniel and his three fellow Hebrew friends, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah, who subsequently were given the Babylonian names of, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego.... Alternative thought processing has Daniel identifying himself with the likes of, all worshipers of Jehovah; divine wisdom; or even a contrasting force. God himself is even suggested (see Pulpit Commentary)....

In Dan, 2:17 & 18, we see Daniel informing his friends of the matter of interpreting Nebuchadnezzar's dream, Daniel having already been brought to the king's attention. We see that they all pray to God for compassion and understanding, in order that they may not be destroyed along with the rest of the so called wise men of Babylon.

Then, in Dan, 23, Daniel gives thanks and praise - after imparting wisdom and power to him - to God, for Him revealing the dream interpretation. The verse goes on to say..."Even now Thou hast made known to me what we requested of Thee, for Thou has made known to us the king's matter"...NASB.

In verses 46 thru 49, not only Daniel, but his three friends (thanks to a further request of the king from Daniel), also receive their rewards and thanks from the king, in no uncertain terms.

In Chapter 3, one can see the ultimate consummation of the WE, when Daniel lovingly relates the story of the same three friends when they are subjected to the fiery furnace, only to survive same through their own shared faith in God Almighty, who then go on to further prosper, in the province of Babylon.

In response to the last part of the question, as to why the ME went to the WE. Daniel having prayed, and presumably consulted, together with his three friends (Dan,2:18), unselfishly decided not to take all the credit, even though God singled him out solely for the dream interpretation (Dan,2:19) and even though he alone stood before the king "twice" (Dan, 2:16; Dan, 2:24-49). And, as if that was not enough of an unselfish disposition, Daniel also requested of Arioch, the king's commander, to spare the lives of the Babylonian astrologers, who had failed in their interpretation.

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