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The Royal Eunuchs

A prophecy of the LORD given to King Hezekiah of Judah (see Kings of Israel and Judah) by Isaiah the prophet:

"39:3 Then came Isaiah the prophet unto king Hezekiah, and said unto him, What said these men? and from whence came they unto thee?

And Hezekiah said, They are come from a far country unto me, even from Babylon [see Ancient Empires - Babylon].

39:4 Then said he, What have they seen in thine house?

And Hezekiah answered, All that is in mine house have they seen: there is nothing among my treasures that I have not showed them.

39:5 Then said Isaiah to Hezekiah, Hear the word of the LORD of hosts: 39:6 Behold, the days come, that all that is in thine house, and that which thy fathers have laid up in store until this day, shall be carried to Babylon: nothing shall be left, saith the LORD [see Temple Mount Treasures].

39:7 And of thy sons that shall issue from thee, which thou shalt beget, shall they take away; and they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon." (Isaiah 39:3-7 KJV)

"Thy sons ... shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon"

The prophecy was fulfilled just as the LORD said that it would. The Southern Kingdom, known as "Judah," was conquered and taken into exile by the Babylonians (see also Jeremiah's Field).

The Babylonian Empire

"1:1 In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah came Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon unto Jerusalem, and besieged it.

1:2 And the Lord gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, with part of the vessels of the house of God: which he carried into the land of Shinar to the house of his god; and he brought the vessels into the treasure house of his god." (Daniel 1:-2 KJV)

The prophecy about "children of Israel, and of the king's seed, and of the princes" was also fulfilled, just as the LORD said, when they were delivered to "Ashpenaz the master of his eunuchs."

"1:3 And the king spake unto Ashpenaz the master of his eunuchs, that he should bring certain of the children of Israel, and of the king's seed, and of the princes; 1:4 Children in whom was no blemish, but well favoured, and skilful in all wisdom, and cunning in knowledge, and understanding science, and such as had ability in them to stand in the king's palace, and whom they might teach the learning and the tongue of the Chaldeans.

1:5 And the king appointed them a daily provision of the king's meat, and of the wine which he drank: so nourishing them three years, that at the end thereof they might stand before the king." (Daniel 1:3-5 KJV)

The prophet Daniel is listed among that group. It was "the prince of the eunuchs" that gave Daniel his new name, Belteshazzar.

"1:6 Now among these were of the children of Judah, Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah: 1:7 Unto whom the prince of the eunuchs gave names: for he gave unto Daniel the name of Belteshazzar; and to Hananiah, of Shadrach; and to Mishael, of Meshach; and to Azariah, of Abednego." (Daniel 1:6-7 KJV)

Was Daniel made a eunuch? There is no definitive Biblical statement, but many have debated, for centuries, that he was, considering the LORD's own prophecy that would surely be fulfilled ("the LORD God" was Jesus Christ - see 'Before Abraham Was, I AM'), and the fact that Daniel was put under the charge of Ashpenaz the master of the king's eunuchs. If he was however, it certainly did not prevent Daniel from rising to be the Prime Minister of Babylon (see the Fact Finder question below), second only to the king himself, and one of the greatest of the LORD's prophets that the world has ever known.

Did the Messiah ever make mention of eunuchs? Yes, He did. Was He thinking also of Daniel when He said it? We can only speculate.

"19:12 For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother's womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven's sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it." (Matthew 19:12 KJV)

Fact Finder: How did Daniel rise to great power in Babylon?
See Prime Minister Daniel


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