2Kings 13


בִּשְׁנַת עֶשְׂרִים וְשָׁלֹשׁ שָׁנָה לְיוֹאָשׁ בֶּן־אֲחַזְיָהוּ מֶלֶךְ יְהוּדָה מָלַךְ יְהוֹאָחָז בֶּן־יֵהוּא עַל־יִשְׂרָאֵל   13:1 בְּשֹׁמְרוֹן שְׁבַע עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁנָה׃

2Kin. 13:1   In the year of twenty-three years for Joash son of Ahaziah, king of Judah, Jehoahaz son of Jehu became king over Israel in Samaria for seventeen years.

וַיַּעַשׂ הָרַע בְּעֵינֵי יְהוָה וַיֵּלֶךְ אַחַר חַטֹּאת יָרָבְעָם בֶּן־נְבָט אֲשֶׁר־הֶחֱטִיא אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵל לֹא־סָר מִמֶּנָּה׃   13:2

2Kin. 13:2   And he did what was evil in the eyes of the Lord and went after the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat by which he made Israel to sin.  He did not turn from it.

וַיִּחַר־אַף יְהוָה בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל וַיִּתְּנֵם בְּיַד חֲזָאֵל מֶלֶךְ־אֲרָם וּבְיַד בֶּן־הֲדַד בֶּן־חֲזָאֵל כָּל־הַיָּמִים׃   13:3

2Kin. 13:3   And the “anger” of the Lord was kindled against Israel and He delivered them into the hand of Hazael, king of Aram, and into the hand of Ben-hadad son of Hazael all the time.

וַיְחַל יְהוֹאָחָז אֶת־פְּנֵי יְהוָה וַיִּשְׁמַע אֵלָיו יְהוָה כִּי רָאָה אֶת־לַחַץ יִשְׂרָאֵל כִּי־לָחַץ אֹתָם מֶלֶךְ אֲרָם׃   13:4

2Kin. 13:4   And Jehoahaz entreated the favor of the Lord, and the Lord listened to him, for He saw the affliction of Israel, how the king of Aram oppressed them.

וַיִּתֵּן יְהוָה לְיִשְׂרָאֵל מוֹשִׁיעַ וַיֵּצְאוּ מִתַּחַת יַד־אֲרָם וַיֵּשְׁבוּ בְנֵי־יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּאָהֳלֵיהֶם כִּתְמוֹל שִׁלְשׁוֹם׃   13:5

2Kin. 13:5   And the Lord gave a deliverer to Israel and they emerged from beneath the hand of Aram.  And the children of Israel dwelled in their tents as in earlier times past.

In their tents?  Didn’t they have houses?  What does this mean?  The commentators belittle the word meaning tents, and use a variety of other meanings instead --  or completely ignore the word.  I suspect the use of the word meaning tents was the result of another mental lapse on the part of the scribe.

אַךְ לֹא־סָרוּ מֵחַטֹּאות בֵּית־יָרָבְעָם אֲשֶׁר־ (הֶחֱטִי) [הֶחֱטִיא] אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵל בָּהּ הָלָךְ וְגַם הָאֲשֵׁרָה   13:6

  עָמְדָה בְּשֹׁמְרוֹן׃

2Kin. 13:6   Notwithstanding, they did not turn away from the sins of the house of Jeroboam by which he was making Israel to sin; in it, it walked.  And also the Asherah was left standing in Samaria.

The word in parentheses is missing an aleph as its last letter.  The correction, translated as he was making ... to sin, appears in the brackets.

כִּי לֹא הִשְׁאִיר לִיהוֹאָחָז עָם כִּי אִם־חֲמִשִּׁים פָּרָשִׁים וַעֲשָׂרָה רֶכֶב וַעֲשֶׂרֶת אֲלָפִים רַגְלִי כִּי אִבְּדָם   13:7 מֶלֶךְ אֲרָם וַיְשִׂמֵם כֶּעָפָר לָדֻשׁ׃

2Kin. 13:7   But there was not remaining of the people but only fifty horsemen and ten chariots and ten thousand footmen to Jehoahaz, for the king of Aram had destroyed them and had made them like dust to tread down.

וְיֶתֶר דִּבְרֵי יְהוֹאָחָז וְכָל־אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה וּגְבוּרָתוֹ הֲלוֹא־הֵם כְּתוּבִים עַל־סֵפֶר דִּבְרֵי הַיָּמִים לְמַלְכֵי   13:8 יִשְׂרָאֵל׃

2Kin. 13:8   And the rest of the acts of Jehoahaz and all that he accomplished and his might, are they not written on the scroll of the chronicles of the days of the kings of Israel?

וַיִּשְׁכַּב יְהוֹאָחָז עִם־אֲבֹתָיו וַיִּקְבְּרֻהוּ בְּשֹׁמְרוֹן וַיִּמְלֹךְ יוֹאָשׁ בְּנוֹ תַּחְתָּיו׃   13:9

2Kin. 13:9   And Jehoahaz slept with his fathers and they buried him in Samaria, and his son, Joash, became king in his place.

בִּשְׁנַת שְׁלֹשִׁים וָשֶׁבַע שָׁנָה לְיוֹאָשׁ מֶלֶךְ יְהוּדָה מָלַךְ יְהוֹאָשׁ בֶּן־יְהוֹאָחָז עַל־יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּשֹׁמְרוֹן שֵׁשׁ   13:10 עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁנָה׃

2Kin. 13:10   In the year of thirty-seven years for Joash, king of Judah, Jehoash son of Jehoahaz became king over Israel in Samaria for sixteen years.

Hold on!  There appears to be a problem with the arithmetic here.  In 2Kin. 12:2 we were told that Joash, king of Judah, reigned for forty years. In v. 1 above, we are told that Jehoahaz became king of Israel in the twenty-third year of Joash’s reign, and he was king for seventeen years.  So it would seem that Johoahaz died in the fortieth year of Joash’s reign.  But in this verse we find that Jehoash son of Jehoahaz became king in Joash’s thirty-seventh year.  As a result of this seemingly obvious error, I have to assume that somewhere, either in Chapter 12 or here, the scribe made a mistake in his counting of years.  Either Joash, king of Judah, reigned for forty-three years or Jehoahaz, king of Israel, reigned for only fourteen years.  Bible commentators, however, have reached a different conclusion, that Joash (or Jehoash, as it is spelled in this verse) reigned during the last three years of Jehoahaz’s reign.  I am willing to accept this premise as reasonable.

וַיַּעֲשֶׂה הָרַע בְּעֵינֵי יְהוָה לֹא סָר מִכָּל־חַטֹּאות יָרָבְעָם בֶּן־נְבָט אֲשֶׁר־הֶחֱטִיא אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵל בָּהּ   13:11


2Kin. 13:11   And he did what was evil in the eyes of the Lord; he did not turn away from all the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat by which he made Israel to sin. In it he walked.

וְיֶתֶר דִּבְרֵי יוֹאָשׁ וְכָל־אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה וּגְבוּרָתוֹ אֲשֶׁר נִלְחַם עִם אֲמַצְיָה מֶלֶךְ־יְהוּדָה הֲלוֹא־הֵם   13:12

  כְּתוּבִים עַל־סֵפֶר דִּבְרֵי הַיָּמִים לְמַלְכֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל׃

2Kin. 13:12   And the rest of the acts of Joash and all that he accomplished and his might with which he fought with Amaziah, king of Judah, are they not written on the scroll of the chronicles of the days of the kings of Israel?

וַיִּשְׁכַּב יוֹאָשׁ עִם־אֲבֹתָיו וְיָרָבְעָם יָשַׁב עַל־כִּסְאוֹ וַיִּקָּבֵר יוֹאָשׁ בְּשֹׁמְרוֹן עִם מַלְכֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל׃   13:13

2Kin. 13:13   And Joash slept with his fathers, and Jeroboam sat on his throne, and Joash was buried in Samaria with the kings of Israel.

וֶאֱלִי שָׁע חָלָה אֶת־חָלְיוֹ אֲשֶׁר יָמוּת בּוֹ וַיֵּרֶד אֵלָיו יוֹאָשׁ מֶלֶךְ־יִשְׂרָאֵל וַיֵּבְךְּ עַל־פָּנָיו וַיֹּאמַר אָבִי   13:14

  אָבִי רֶכֶב יִשְׂרָאֵל וּפָרָשָׁיו׃

2Kin. 13:14   And Elisha was diseased with his sickness that he would die by it, when Joash, king of Israel, came down to him and wept over his condition and said, “My father, my father, chariot of Israel and its horsemen!”

וַיֹּאמֶר לוֹ אֱלִישָׁע קַח קֶשֶׁת וְחִצִּים וַיִּקַּח אֵלָיו קֶשֶׁת וְחִצִּים׃   13:15

2Kin. 13:15   And Elisha said to him, “Take a bow and arrows.”  And he took to himself a bow and arrows.

וַיֹּאמֶר לְמֶלֶךְ יִשְׂרָאֵל הַרְכֵּב יָדְךָ עַל־הַקֶּשֶׁת וַיַּרְכֵּב יָדוֹ וַיָּשֶׂם אֱלִישָׁע יָדָיו עַל־יְדֵי הַמֶּלֶךְ׃   13:16

2Kin. 13:16   And he said to the king of Israel, “Put your hand on the bow.”  And he put his hand.  Then Elisha set his hands on the hands of the king.

וַיֹּאמֶר פְּתַח הַחַלּוֹן קֵדְמָה וַיִּפְתָּח וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלִישָׁע יְרֵה וַיּוֹר וַיֹּאמֶר חֵץ־תְּשׁוּעָה לַיהוָה וְחֵץ   13:17

  תְּשׁוּעָה בַאֲרָם וְהִכִּיתָ אֶת־אֲרָם בַּאֲפֵק עַד־כַּלֵּה׃

2Kin. 13:17   Then he said, “Open the east window.”  And he opened.  Then Elisha said, “Shoot.” And he shot.  And he said, “It is the arrow of victory for the Lord and the arrow of victory against Aram when you shall smite Aram in Aphek until it is consumed.”

וַיֹּאמֶר קַח הַחִצִּים וַיִּקָּח וַיֹּאמֶר לְמֶלֶךְ־יִשְׂרָאֵל הַךְ־אַרְצָה וַיַּךְ שָׁלֹשׁ־פְּעָמִים וַיַּעֲמֹד׃   13:18

2Kin. 13:18   Then he said, “Take the arrows.”  And he took.  Then he said to the king of Israel, “Strike the ground.”  So he struck three times, then stood still.

וַיִּקְצֹף עָלָיו אִישׁ הָאֱלֹהִים וַיֹּאמֶר לְהַכּוֹת חָמֵשׁ אוֹ־שֵׁשׁ פְּעָמִים אָז הִכִּיתָ אֶת־אֲרָם עַד־כַּלֵּה   13:19

  וְעַתָּה שָׁלֹשׁ פְּעָמִים תַּכֶּה אֶת־אֲרָם׃

2Kin. 13:19   And the man of God was displeased by him and he said, “Striking five or six times, then you smite Aram until it is consumed.  But now you will smite Aram three times.

וַיָּמָת אֱלִישָׁע וַיִּקְבְּרֻהוּ וּגְדוּדֵי מוֹאָב יָבֹאוּ בָאָרֶץ בָּא שָׁנָה׃   13:20

2Kin. 13:20   And Elisha died and they buried him.  Now bands of Moabites would come into the land at the start of the year.

Alas, despite the epic proportions of his evident prophetic and miraculous powers, Elisha died like an ordinary man.  Yet at least some of his power remained in his corpse.  See the next verse.

וַיְהִי הֵם קֹבְרִים אִישׁ וְהִנֵּה רָאוּ אֶת־הַגְּדוּד וַיַּשְׁלִיכוּ אֶת־הָאִישׁ בְּקֶבֶר אֱלִישָׁע וַיֵּלֶךְ וַיִּגַּע הָאִישׁ   13:21 בְּעַצְמוֹת אֱלִישָׁע וַיְחִי וַיָּקָם עַל־רַגְלָיו׃

2Kin. 13:21   And it happened, they were burying a man when behold, they saw the band, so they cast the man into the sepulcher of Elisha, but the man went and touched against the bones of Elisha and he came alive and rose up on his feet.

וַחֲזָאֵל מֶלֶךְ אֲרָם לָחַץ אֶת־יִשְׂרָאֵל כֹּל יְמֵי יְהוֹאָחָז׃   13:22

2Kin. 13:22   So Hazael, king of Aram, had oppressed Israel all the days of Jehoahaz.

וַיָּחָן יְהוָה אֹתָם וַיְרַחֲמֵם וַיִּפֶן אֲלֵיהֶם לְמַעַן בְּרִיתוֹ אֶת־אַבְרָהָם יִצְחָק וְיַעֲקֹב וְלֹא אָבָה הַשְׁחִיתָם   13:23 וְלֹא־הִשְׁלִיכָם מֵעַל־פָּנָיו עַד־עָתָּה׃

2Kin. 13:23   But the Lord showed them mercy and pitied them and turned to them because of His covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and did not allow their destruction, and He has not cast them from His presence until now.

And, I feel quite certain, He has never and will never cast His chosen people from His presence.

וַיָּמָת חֲזָאֵל מֶלֶךְ־אֲרָם וַיִּמְלֹךְ בֶּן־הֲדַד בְּנוֹ תַּחְתָּיו׃   13:24

2Kin. 13:24   And Hazael, king of Aram, died and his son, Ben-hadad, became king in his place.

וַיָּשָׁב יְהוֹאָשׁ בֶּן־יְהוֹאָחָז וַיִּקַּח אֶת־הֶעָרִים מִיַּד בֶּן־הֲדַד בֶּן־חֲזָאֵל אֲשֶׁר לָקַח מִיַּד יְהוֹאָחָז אָבִיו   13:25 בַּמִּלְחָמָה שָׁלֹשׁ פְּעָמִים הִכָּהוּ יוֹאָשׁ וַיָּשֶׁב אֶת־עָרֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל׃

2Kin. 13:25   And Jehoash son of Jehoahaz returned and took the cities from the hand of Ben-hadad son of Hazael that he took from the hand of Jehoahaz, his father, in war.  Joash smote him three times and he recovered the cities of Israel.


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