2 Kings Chapter One
New King James Version (NKJV)
INTRODUCTION TO 2 KINGS 1
This chapter begins with the rebellion of Moab against Israel, 2 Kings 1:1, relates a fall of the king of Israel in his house, which brought on him a sickness, about which he sent messengers to inquire of the god of Ekron, who were stopped by Elijah, and bid to return, as they did; and upon the king's examination of them about the cause of their return, he perceived it was Elijah that forbad them, 2 Kings 1:2, upon which the king sent to him two captains, with fifty men each, one after another, to bring him to him, but fire came down from heaven and consumed them, 2 Kings 1:9, but a third with fifty men sent to him were spared, and he is bid to go along with them with a message to the king, as he did, 2 Kings 1:13 and the chapter is closed with the death of Ahaziah, 2 Kings 1:17.
2 Kings 1:1 Moab rebelled against Israel after the death of Ahab.
YLT 1And Moab transgresseth against Israel after the death of Ahab,
Then Moab rebelled against Israel after the death of Ahab. Which had been in subjection to them from the times of David, 2 Samuel 8:2 refusing to pay a tribute as they had done; taking advantage of Ahab's ill success with the king of Syria, and of his death, and the condition and circumstances of his successor.
2 Kings 1:2 2 Now Ahaziah fell through the lattice of his upper room in Samaria, and was injured; so he sent messengers and said to them, “Go, inquire of Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron, whether I shall recover from this injury.”
YLT 2and Ahaziah falleth through the lattice in his upper chamber that [is] in Samaria, and is sick, and sendeth messengers, and saith unto them, `Go ye, inquire of Baal-Zebub god of Ekron if I recover from this sickness.'
And Ahaziah fell down a lattice in his upper chamber that was in Samaria,.... Which was either a window or lattice in the form of network, to let in light; or rather were the rails of a balcony or battlement on the roof of his palace, in this form, on which leaning, it broke down, and he fell into the garden or court yard; or walking on the roof of his house, and treading unawares on a sky light, which let in light into a room underneath, he fell through it into it:
and was sick; the fall perhaps threw him into a fever, and which seemed threatening, being violent:
and he sent messengers, and said unto them, go inquire of Baalzebub, the god of Ekron, whether I shall recover of this disease; not to heal him of it, but to know the issue of it; a vain curiosity this! Ekron was one of the principalities of the Philistines, and this idol was the god they worshipped, which signifies a master fly: which some think was a large metallic fly; made under a planet that rules over flies; and the Heathens had deities they called Myiodes, Myagros, and απομυιος, which signifies a driver away of flies; as Jupiter and Hercules were called by the Eleans and Romans, and worshipped and sacrificed to by them on that accountF1Pausan. Eliac. 1. sive, l. 5. p. 313. & Arcadica, sive, l. 8. p. 491. Clement. Alex. Admon. ad Gentes, p. 24. ; and so the Cyreneans, a people of Lybia, worshipped the god Achor, which seems to be a corruption of the word Ekron, because he freed them from flies, after they had been infested with a pestilence through themF2Plin. Nat. Hist. l. 10. c. 27. Vid. Chartarii Imagines Deorum, p. 151. & Alex. ab Alex. Genial. Dier. l. 6. c. 26. ; and Ekron being a place near the sea, and both hot and moist, might be much infested with those creatures. Within the haven of Ptolemais, or Acco, was formerly a temple of Baalzebub, called in later times "the tower of flies", and used as a PharusF3Adrichom. Theatrum Ter. Sanct. fol. 6. 1. .
2 Kings 1:3 3 But the angel[a] of the Lord said to Elijah the Tishbite, “Arise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria, and say to them, ‘Is it because there is no God in Israel that you are going to inquire of Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron?’
YLT 3And a messenger of Jehovah hath spoken unto Elijah the Tishbite, `Rise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria, and speak unto them, Is it because there is not a God in Israel -- ye are going to inquire of Baal Zebub god of Ekron?
arise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria: that is, the king of Israel, whose capital city was Samaria:
is it not because there is not a God in Israel; known, acknowledged, and worshipped there, of whom there had been sufficient proof of his deity and divine perfections, as omniscience, omnipotence, &c.
that ye go to inquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron? about future things, when they had God nigh unto them, fully acquainted with them, as this message shows.
2 Kings 1:4 4 Now therefore, thus says the Lord: ‘You shall not come down from the bed to which you have gone up, but you shall surely die.’” So Elijah departed.
YLT 4and therefore, thus said Jehovah, The bed whither thou hast gone up, thou dost not come down from it, for thou dost certainly die;' and Elijah goeth on.
thou shalt not come down from that bed on which thou art gone up, but shall surely die; this sickness should be unto death, and the bed he had betaken himself to should be his deathbed. The phrases of going up to bed, and coming down, are used with great propriety; for in the eastern countries, in their bedchambers, they had a gallery raised four or five feet above the floor, with a balustrade on the frontF4See Dr. Shaw's Travels, p. 209. Ed. 2. , and steps leading up to it; or ladders, which had more or fewer rounds, according as the beds were higher or lowerF5Vid. Isidor. Origin. l. 20. c. 11. & Alstorph. de Lect. Vet. c. 2. :
and Elijah departed; having met the messengers, and delivered his message from the Lord unto them.
2 Kings 1:5 5 And when the messengers returned to him, he said to them, “Why have you come back?”
YLT 5And the messengers turn back unto him, and he saith unto them, `What [is] this -- ye have turned back!'
And when the messengers turned back unto him,.... To Ahaziah king of Israel, as they did as soon as Elijah was gone from them; concluding from his habit, his gravity, and the authority with which he spoke, that he was a prophet of the Lord, and especially from his knowledge of them, and of what they were sent about:
he said unto them, why are ye now turned back? for, by the time they had been gone, he knew they could never have been at Ekron and returned.
2 Kings 1:6 6 So they said to him, “A man came up to meet us, and said to us, ‘Go, return to the king who sent you, and say to him, “Thus says the Lord: ‘Is it because there is no God in Israel that you are sending to inquire of Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron? Therefore you shall not come down from the bed to which you have gone up, but you shall surely die.’”’”
YLT 6And they say unto him, `A man hath come up to meet us, and saith unto us, Go, turn back unto the king who sent you, and ye have said unto him, Thus said Jehovah, Is it because there is not a God in Israel -- thou art sending to inquire of Baal-Zebub god of Ekron? therefore, the bed whither thou hast gone up, thou dost not come down from it, for thou dost certainly die.'
and say unto him; and then they repeated all that is said by the angel to Elijah, and he had delivered to them, 2 Kings 1:3 and which was a sufficient reason for their turning back, since they got a full answer from a man of God, of what they were to inquire of at Ekron; which was, whether the king would recover of this disease or not.
2 Kings 1:7 7 Then he said to them, “What kind of man was it who came up to meet you and told you these words?”
YLT 7And he saith unto them, `What [is] the fashion of the man who hath come up to meet you, and speaketh unto you these words?'
which came up to meet you, and told you these words? they had related to him.
2 Kings 1:8 8 So they answered him, “A hairy man wearing a leather belt around his waist.” And he said, “It is Elijah the Tishbite.”
YLT 8And they say unto him, `A man -- hairy, and a girdle of skin girt about his loins;' and he saith, `He [is] Elijah the Tishbite.'
And they answered him, he was an hairy man,.... Either the hair of his head and beard were grown very long, having been much neglected for a great while; or he had an hairy garment on, either of goats' hair, such as the Chinese wearF6Semedo's History of China, part 1. ch. 3. , whose women spin it, see Exodus 35:26 and of which garments are made; or of camels' hair, such as John the Baptist wore, who came in his spirit and power, and imitated him in his dress, being also, as Elijah here:
girt with a girdle of leather about his loins: for more expeditious travelling, not for warmth, the climate being hot:
and he said, it is Elijah the Tishbite; for he had seen him formerly in his father's court in this dress.
2 Kings 1:9 9 Then the king sent to him a captain of fifty with his fifty men. So he went up to him; and there he was, sitting on the top of a hill. And he spoke to him: “Man of God, the king has said, ‘Come down!’”
YLT 9And he sendeth unto him a head of fifty and his fifty, and he goeth up unto him (and lo, he is sitting on the top of the hill), and he speaketh unto him, `O man of God, the king hath spoken, Come down.'
and he went up to him, and, behold, he sat on the top of an hill; generally supposed to be Mount Carmel:
and he spake unto him; at the bottom of the hill, so loud that he might hear him:
thou man of God; or the prophet of the Lord, as the Targum, as thou callest thyself; for this was said in a sneering, flouting, manner:
the king hath said, come down; and in the king's name he ordered him to come down, signifying, if he would not, he would send his men to fetch him down.
2 Kings 1:10 10 So Elijah answered and said to the captain of fifty, “If I am a man of God, then let fire come down from heaven and consume you and your fifty men.” And fire came down from heaven and consumed him and his fifty.
YLT 10And Elijah answereth and speaketh unto the head of the fifty, `And if I [am] a man of God, fire doth come down from the heavens, and consume thee and thy fifty;' and fire cometh down from the heavens, and consumeth him and his fifty.
then let fire come down from heaven, and consume thee and thy fifty; this he said not in a passion, and from a private spirit of revenge, but for the vindication of the honour and glory of God, and under the impulse of his spirit, who was abused through the insult on him as his prophet:
and there came down fire from heaven, and consumed him and his fifty; a flash of lightning, which destroyed them at once; the Lord hearkening to the voice of his prophet, in vindication of him in his office, and of his own glory.
2 Kings 1:11 11 Then he sent to him another captain of fifty with his fifty men. And he answered and said to him: “Man of God, thus has the king said, ‘Come down quickly!’”
YLT 11And he turneth and sendeth unto him another head of fifty and his fifty, and he answereth and speaketh unto him, `O man of God, thus said the king, Haste, come down.'
and he answered and said unto him, O man of God, thus hath the king said, come down quickly; he flouts the prophet in the same manner as the former, and in the king's name commands him to come down, and that immediately; which the king added to his orders, or he himself, signifying he would not be trifled with, if he did not come down directly, he would force him.
2 Kings 1:12 12 So Elijah answered and said to them, “If I am a man of God, let fire come down from heaven and consume you and your fifty men.” And the fire of God came down from heaven and consumed him and his fifty.
YLT 12And Elijah answereth and speaketh unto them, `If I [am] a man of God, fire doth come down from the heavens, and consume thee and thy fifty;' and fire of God cometh down from the heavens, and consumeth him and his fifty.
And Elijah answered and said unto them,.... The same as he had to the first captain, and made the same request of fire from heaven; which accordingly came down, and destroyed this captain and his fifty also.
2 Kings 1:13 13 Again, he sent a third captain of fifty with his fifty men. And the third captain of fifty went up, and came and fell on his knees before Elijah, and pleaded with him, and said to him: “Man of God, please let my life and the life of these fifty servants of yours be precious in your sight.
YLT 13And he turneth and sendeth a third head of fifty and his fifty, and the third head of fifty goeth up, and cometh in, and boweth on his knees over-against Elijah, and maketh supplication unto him, and speaketh unto him, `O man of God, let be precious, I pray thee, my soul and the soul of thy servants -- these fifty -- in thine eyes.
And he sent again a captain of the third fifty with his fifty,.... Which was most daring and insolent, and showed him to be dreadfully hardened, to persist in his messages after such rebuffs: and the third captain of fifty went up; instead of calling to the prophet at the bottom of the hill as the other did, he went up to the top of it:
and came and fell on his knees before Elijah: in reverence of him as a prophet of the Lord, and under a dread of the power he was possessed of, of calling for fire from heaven on him and his men, as the former instances showed:
and besought him, and said unto him, O man of God, I pray thee, let my life, and the life of these fifty thy servants, be precious in thy sight: he owns their lives lay at his mercy; he begs they might be spared, since it was not in contempt of him, and through ill will to him as the prophet of the Lord, but in obedience to the king's command, that they were come to him.
2 Kings 1:14 14 Look, fire has come down from heaven and burned up the first two captains of fifties with their fifties. But let my life now be precious in your sight.”
YLT 14Lo, come down hath fire from the heavens, and consumeth the two heads of the former fifties and their fifties; and, now, let my soul be precious in thine eyes.'
Behold, there came fire down from heaven and burnt up the two captains of the former fifties with their fifties,.... He owns the facts, and ascribes the death of them to the true cause, and appears to have an awful sense of the judgment of God on them, fearing the same would befall him and his:
therefore let my life now be precious in thy sight; by sparing it, what is precious and valuable being spared.
2 Kings 1:15 15 And the angel[b] of the Lord said to Elijah, “Go down with him; do not be afraid of him.” So he arose and went down with him to the king.
YLT 15And a messenger of Jehovah speaketh unto Elijah, `Go down with him, be not afraid of him;' and he riseth and goeth down with him unto the king,
And the angel of the Lord said unto Elijah, The same as in 2 Kings 1:3 or "had said"F7וידבר "edixerat autem", Junius & Tremellius. , as some render it, before this captain came:
go down with him; the captain and his men:
and be not afraid of him; of King Ahaziah, whom he might fear, because of the message he had sent him, that he should die of that sickness, and for turning back his messengers to the god of Ekron, and for destroying his two captains and their fifties; nor of his mother Jezebel, who had threatened his life for killing her prophets:
and he arose, and went down with him unto the king; boldly and courageously, not fearing his wrath; so that the captain not only had his life and the life of his men spared, but answered the end of his message also.
2 Kings 1:16 16 Then he said to him, “Thus says the Lord: ‘Because you have sent messengers to inquire of Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron, is it because there is no God in Israel to inquire of His word? Therefore you shall not come down from the bed to which you have gone up, but you shall surely die.’”
YLT 16and speaketh unto him, `Thus said Jehovah, Because that thou hast sent messengers to inquire of Baal-Zebub god of Ekron -- is it because there is not a God in Israel to inquire of His word? therefore, the bed whither thou hast gone up -- thou dost not come down from it, for thou dost certainly die.'
And he said unto him,.... Elijah to King Ahaziah when introduced into his chamber; and after some discourse passed between them, he confirmed what he had said to his messengers, and expressed it in the same language as in 2 Kings 1:3; see Gill on 2 Kings 1:3, 2 Kings 1:4
2 Kings 1:17 17 So Ahaziah died according to the word of the Lord which Elijah had spoken. Because he had no son, Jehoram[c] became king in his place, in the second year of Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat, king of Judah.
YLT 17And he dieth, according to the word of Jehovah that Elijah spake, and Jehoram reigneth in his stead, in the second year of Jehoram son of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, for he had no son.
So he died, according to the word of the Lord which Elijah had spoken,.... How long or how soon after this is not said; however, he died of the sickness, and on the bed to which he went up, as he said:
and Jehoram reigned in his stead: who was another son of Ahab, and brother of Ahaziah, 2 Kings 3:1, in the second year of Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat king of Judah; but as he must begin his reign in the nineteenth, or in the latter end of the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat, see 1 Kings 22:51 and Jehoshaphat reigned in all twenty five years, 1 Kings 22:42, he must live and reign after this six or seven years; this therefore is to be reconciled by observing, that this son of Jehoshaphat was made viceroy, or was taken into partnership in the throne by his father when he went with Ahab to Ramothgilead; and it was in the second year of this his reign with his father that the other Jehoram began his:
because he had no son; that is, Ahaziah, wherefore his brother reigned in his stead.
2 Kings 1:18 18 Now the rest of the acts of Ahaziah which he did, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel?
YLT 18And the rest of the matters of Ahaziah that he did, are they not written on the book of the Chronicles of the kings of Israel?
are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel? in which were written his father Ahab's also, and his predecessors', see 1 Kings 22:39.
──《John Gill’s Exposition of the Bible》
New King James Version (NKJV)