« PreviousContinue »
father, my father, the chariot of Israel, and the he tarried at Jericho,) he said unto them, Did horsemen thereof. And he saw him no more :I not say unto you, Go not? and he took hold of his own clothes, and rent 19 1 And the men of the city said unto them in two pieces.
Elisha, Behold, I pray thee, the situation of 13 He took up also the mantle of Elijah | this city is pleasant, as my lord seeth : but the that fell from him, and went back, and stood water is naught, and the ground barren. by the 'bank of Jordan;
20 And he said, Bring me a new cruse, 14 And he took the mantle of Elijah that and put salt therein. And they brought it to fell from him, and smote the waters, and said, him. Where is the LORD God of Elijah ? and 21 And he went forth unto the spring of when he also had smitten the waters, they the waters, and cast the salt in there, and parted hither and thither : and Elisha went said, Thus saith the LORD, I have healed over.
these waters; there shall not be from thence 15 And when the sons of the prophets which any more death or barren land. were oto view at Jericho saw him, they said, 22 So the waters were healed unto this day, The spirit of Elijah doth rest on Elisha. And according to the saying of Elisha which he they came to meet him, and bowed themselves spake. to the ground before him.
23 And he went up from thence unto 16 4 And they said unto him, Behold now, Beth-el : and as he was going up by the way, there be with thy servants fifty "strong men ; there came forth little children out of the city, let them go, we pray thee, and seek thy mas and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, ter: lest peradventure the Spirit of the LORD thou bald head; go up, thou bald head. hath taken him up, and cast him upon *some 24 And he turned back, and looked on mountain, or into some valley. And he said, them, and cursed them in the name of the Ye shall not send.
LORD. And there came forth two she bears 17 And when they urged him till he was out of the wood, and tare forty and two children ashamed, he said, Send. They sent therefore of them. fifty men, and they sought three days, but 25 And he went from thence to mount found him not.
Carmel, and from thence he returned to Sa18 And when they came again to him, (for | maria. 5 Heb. lip. Verse 7. 7 Heb. sons of strength. Heb. one of the mountains. gleb. causing to miscarry.
Verse 3. • The Lord will take away thy master from thy | Its waters are at present received in a basin about nine or head.'--This is probably to be explained by reference to the ten paces long, and five or six broad: and from thence custom in the schools of the prophets for the scholars to issuing out in good plenty, divide themselves into several sit at the feet of their master, so that the master was above small streams, dispersing their refreshment between this their heads. Thus Paul describes his pupilage in the and Jericho, and rendering it exceeding fruitful. Close celebrated school of Gamaliel, by saying that he sat' at the by the fountain grows a large tree, spreading into boughs feet' of that master.
over the water.' Journey, p. 80, 2nd edit. 9. · Let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me,' 23. - Little children. The terin is the same which This has often been supposed to mean that Elisha desired Solomon applies to himself when not much, if anything, to be twice as eminent in prophetic gifts as his master. less than twenty years of age (1 Kings iii. 7), and which This seems to us a serious misconception. Whatever his is elsewhere applied to young but full-grown men. The request was, Elijah granted it; and that it was not this, is translation • little children' is therefore calculated to give evinced by the fact, that Elisha was not twice as great as a wrong impression, of which ignorant infidelity has not his predecessor. So far from it, we can scarcely venture failed to take advantage. They were doubtless profane to say that Elisha was at all a greater prophet than Elijah, young men of the city where the golden calf was woror that he was even as great. The double portion must shipped, well enough able to know what they were about; then mean something else. Now when we find that the but who, nevertheless, poured forth not merely, or prinfirstborn or heir among the Jews inherited “a double cipally, expressions of personal contempt to Elisha, but of portion of his father's goods, and that the double por. derision at the translation of Elijah, when they thus tion' was a well-understood phrase designating the portion abusively told him to go up' after his master. Their act of the heir, the request of Elisha can easily be understood therefore did not incur the fearful punishment which folto mean that he sought the heirship- the succession to the lowed, merely as an act of disrespect to the prophet, but rich heritage of his master's gifts: and that, in fact, was also as a grievous insult to the power and majesty of what he obtained.
22. · The waters were healed unto this day,'-Near -' Bald head.'--See the note on Levit. xiii. 29. The Jericho there is a fountain which to this day bears the word here is kerēach, which, as explained in that reputation of being the one whose waters Elisha healed.
note, expresses that sort of baldness on the hind part of There is no better description of it than that which Maun the head which the Orientals consider ignominious, which drell gives:- Turning down into the plain, we passed by
baldness in front is not. It is not from this certain that a ruined aqueduct, and a convent in the same condition,
the prophet was really bald-headed, the term being often and in about a mile's riding came to the fountain of Elisha, in the East, at this day, as one of established indignity and so called because miraculously purged from its brackish
contempt, applied to one who has abundant hair. ness by that prophet, at the request of the men of Jericho.
[1–3. APPENDIX, No. 42.]
13 And Elisha said unto the king of Israel,
| What have I to do with thee? get thee to the 1 Jehoran's reign. 4 Mesha rebelleth. 6 Jehoram, with Jehoshaphat, and the king of Edom, being dis , prophets of thy father, and to the prophets of tressed for want of water, by Elisha obtaineth water, thy mother. And the king of Israel said unto and promise of victory. 21 The Moabites, deceived him, Nay: for the LORD hath called these by the colour of the water, coming to spoil, are over- | three kings together, to deliver them into the come. 27 The king of Moab, by sacrificing the king
hand of Moab. of Edom's son, raiseth the siege.
14 And Elisha said, As the Lord of hosts Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign liveth, before whom I stand, surely, were it over Israel in Samaria the eighteenth year of not that I regard the presence of Jehoshaphat Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned the king of Judah, I would not look toward twelve years.
thee, nor see thee. 2 And he wrought evil in the sight of the 15 But now bring me a minstrel. And it LORD; but not like his father, and like his came to pass, when the minstrel played, that mother: for he put away the 'image of Baal the hand of the LORD came upon him. that his father had made.
16 And he said, Thus saith the LORD, 3 Nevertheless he cleaved unto the sins of | Make this valley full of ditches. Jeroboam the son of Nebat, which made Israel 17 For thus saith the LORD, Ye shall not see to sin; he departed not therefrom.
wind, neither shall ye see rain ; yet that valley 44 And Mesha king of Moab was a sheep shall be filled with water, that ye may drink, master, and rendered unto the king of Israel both ye, and your cattle, and your beasts. an hundred thousand lambs, and an hundred | 18 And this is but a light thing in the sight thousand rams, with the wool.
of the Lord: he will deliver the Moabites 5 But it came to pass, when * Ahab was dead, also into your hand. that the king of Moab rebelled against the 19 And ye shall smite every fenced city, king of Israel.
and every choice city, and shall fell every good 6 | And king Jehoram went out of Samaria tree, and stop all wells of water, and Smar the same time, and numbered all Israel. every good piece of land with stones.
7 And he went and sent to Jehoshaphat the 20 | And it came to pass in the morning, king of Judah, saying, The king of Moab hath when the meat offering was offered, that, berebelled against me : wilt thou go with me hold, there came water by the way of Edom, against Moab to battle? And he said, I will and the country was filled with water. go up: 'I am as thou art, my people as thy 21 And when all the Moabites heard that the people, and my horses as thy horses.
kings were come up to fight against them, they 8 And he said, Which way shall we go up? | 'gathered all that were able to "put on armour, And he answered, The way through the wild and upward, and stood in the border. derness of Edom.
22 And they rose up early in the morning, 9 So the king of Israel went, and the king and the sun shone upon the water, and the of Judah, and the king of Edom: and they Moabites saw the water on the other side as fetched a compass of seven days' journey: and red as blood : there was no water for the host, and for the 23 And they said, This is blood : the kings cattle that followed them.
are surely oslain, and they have smitten one 10 And the king of Israel said, Alas! that another: now therefore, Moab, to the spoil. the Lord hath called these three kings toge 24 And when they came to the camp of ther, to deliver them into the hand of Moab! | Israel, the Israelites rose up and smote the
11 But Jehoshaphat said, Is there not here Moabites, so that they fled before them : but a prophet of the Lord, that we may enquire of 'they went forward smiting the Moabites, even the Lord by him? And one of the king of in their country. Israel's servants answered and said, Here is | 25 And they beat down the cities, and on Elisha the son of Shaphat, which poured water every good piece of land cast every man his on the hands of Elijah.
stone, and filled it; and they stopped all the 12 And Jehoshaphat said, The word of the wells of water, and felled all the good trees : Lord is with him. .So the king of Israel and only in Kir-haraseth left they the stones Jehoshaphat and the king of Edom went down thereof; howbeit the slingers went, about it, to him.
| and smote it.
1 Ilel), statue. Chap. 1.1. 31 Kings 22. 4. Heb. at their fiet. Heb. griere. Heb. were cried together. ? Ileb. gird himself with a girdle. 8 11 b, destroyed. Or, they smote in it even smiting. 10 Heb, until he left the stones thereof in Kir-haraseth.
26 9 And when the king of Moab saw that i 27 Then he took his eldest son that should the battle was too sore for him, he took with have reigned in his stead, and offered him for a him seven hundred men that drew swords, to burnt offering upon the wall. And there was break through even unto the king of Edom : great indignation against Israel: and they debut they could not.
parted from him, and returned to their own land.
Verse 4. • An hundred thousand lambs, and an hundred , made up in fardels, and one man carried ten of them : thousand rams, with the wool.'- It was and is a custom in and there were about 3000 men that carried bassuti, and the East for tributes and taxes to be paid in that kind of 3000 men that carried those other cloths; and all these are produce or property with which the tributary country, or of the kingdom of Goiame, which are bound to bring this taxed district, is most abundantly supplied. Indeed, this tribute. After these cloths came ten men, each of them may be set down as a universal practice in all times and bearing a charger upon his head, made like unto those countries, however remote from each other, until those wherein they do eat, and were covered with green and relations are formed which afford such facilities for turn red sindall. After these had passed, came all the men of ing goods into money as render it more convenient, even the Betudete, which passed by, one after another, as he to the tribute-payer, to discharge his obligations in coin. himself had passed. In these platters was the gold put, The period is not exceedingly remote when the grants which was commanded to be borne unto his lodging, with from Parliament to our own kings were paid in wool. the rest of the tribute. In this procession were spent about The progress seems to be–First, live stock and raw pro ten hours, that is to say, from morning until evening.' This duce; then, manufactured goods; and lastly, money. At very instructive passage illustrates many allusions in this day the king of Persia receives the tribute of his pro Scripture; and so exactly are the details in unison with vinces in all three modes, according to their respective usages which are, and always have been, prevalent throughcircumstances. Those whose wealth consisted in cattle, out the East, that we are quite satisfied that the tributes, like the king of Moah, could only, when unfavourably taxes, and gifts, were presented to the Hebrew kings very circumstanced for commerce, satisfy with the produce of much in the manner here described. their flocks and herds the demands made upon them. We 11. • Which poured water on the hands of Elijah.'could quote many illustrations of this usage, but must con. This was the act of an attendant or disciple; and it was tent ourselves with one or two. The first is that given by so much his established duty, that the mere mention of it Strabo, who states that the Cappadocians paid a yearly sufficed to indicate the relation in which Elisha had stood tribute to the Persians of 1500 horses, 2000 mules, and to Elijah. It is also an indication that the Hebrews were 50,000 sheep. We find another in the account given by Alvarez, of the tribute paid by the kingdom of Goiame to the emperor of Abyssinia : and as it strikes us as very illustrative on the general subject, including the mode of collection and presentation, we shall be more particular with it. The description is quite in conformity with Oriental customs in general; and probably with those of Israel in particular, for the strong analogy between the usages of the Abyssinians and those which the Bible describes has been remarked by most travellers, particularly by Bruce and Salt. The emperor (* Prester-John') sent a proper officer (the grand Betudete) to the capital of Goiame to receive the annual tribute, which consisted of 3500 mules, 3000 horses, 3000 bassuti (a very valuable sort of rug or carpet), and above 300 pieces of a kind of cotton cloth. We copy the rest in the words of Alvarez (as in Purchas, p. 1103): I myself was at the presenting of this tribute and saw it all ; and it was after this manner. The Betudete came on foot, naked from the girdle upward, with a cord tied about his head,' (Does this illustrate the • ropes upon their heads' of i Kings xx. 32 ?) and coming within audience of the tent of the Prete (emperor), he said three times this word in short space, “ Abeto, abeto, abeto !" which signifieth “ Lord :” and answer was made him but twice in his language, “ Who art thou? Who art thou ?" and he said, “I which call, am the least of thy
POURING WATER ON THE HANDS. house, which saddles thy mule, and tieth up thy cattle, accustomed to wash their hands in the manner which is and do other business which thou hast commanded me; now universal in the East, and which, whatever may be and I bring thee that which thou hast enjoined me." And thought of its convenience, is unquestionably more rethis was spoken three times: which being ended, a voice freshing and cleanly than washing in the water as it stands was heard, saying, “ Come, come forward.” And he, in a basin—which is a process regarded by the Orientals coming near, did reverence before the tent, and passed with great disgust. The hands are therefore held over a by. After him.came the horses, one after another, all led basin, the use of which is only to receive the water which by the head by servants. The first thirty were saddled, has been poured upon the hands from the jug or ewer and in very good order, and the rest which followed were which is held above them. This cannot very conveniently dear of (i. e. would have been dear at) two drachmes of be managed without the aid of a servant or some other gold, and many were not worth one drachm apiece, and I on. who approaches with the ewer in his right hand saw them afterward sold for less. After these hackneys and the basin in his left; and when the hands have been came the mules in like order, to wit, thirty were saddled, placed in a proper position over the basin, which he confair, and in good order; the rest were little young mulets tinues to hold, lets fall a stream of water upon them from like those hackneys ... and they passed by as the Betu the ewer, suspending it occasionally to allow the hands to dete and horses had done. After these came the cloths be soaped or rubbed together. No towel is offered, as called tassuti, and one man could carry but one of them, every one dries his hands in his handkerchief, or however they were so weighty. After the bassuti, passed the cloths 1 else he pleases. The water is usually tepid, and always
so after a meal, in order to clear the grease contracted by a person never does so except when alone. If he has no eating with the hands. In the East, the basin, which, as servant, he asks some bystander to pour the water upon well as the ewer, is usually of tinned copper, has com- || his hands, and offers a return of the obligation, if it monly a sort of cover, rising in the middle and sunk into seems to be required. the basin at the margin, which being pierced with holes 17. · Ye shall not see wind.'—This may strike us as an allows the water to pass through, thus concealing it after odd expression ; but it is easily understood by a reference it has been defiled by use. The ewer has a long spout, to the fact, that in the East the presence of wind is
strongly and painfully manifested even to the eye, during a dry season, by the vast quantities of dust and stubble which are whirled into the air, which they greatly darken. This usually precedes rain after drought."
19. · Mar every good piece of land with stones.'—How so, seeing that stones put there by men other men could remove? There must have been some conventional signification. What so likely as that ancient Arabian custom, known by the name of OKOKEALUOS, or · fixing of stones,' under which the Arabs were wont to place stones on
the grounds of those with whom they were at variance, ORIENTAL EwEZ AND BASIx.
by way of formal warning that any person who ven.
tured to cultivate that land should infallibly be slain by and a long narrow neck, with a cover, and is altogether the contrivance of those who placed the stones there? not unlike our coffee-pots in general appearance: it is the From the hint which this custom supplies, we may sudsame which the Orientals use in all their ablutions. It is pose that this act of the Israelites interdicted the ground evident that a person cannot conveniently thus wash his from caltivation under the severest penalties, which they own hands without assistance. If he does, he is obliged to had the power of enforcing so long as they could hold the fix the basin, and to take up and lay down the ewer several Moabites in subjection. Is there an allusion to such a times, changing it from one hand to the other. Therefore custom in Eccles. iii. 5 ?
| passed to Shunem, where was a great woman; 1 Elisha multiplieth the widow's oil. 8 He giveth a
and she 'constrained him to eat bread. And son to the good Shunammite. 18 He raiseth again so it was, that as oft as he passed by, he turned her dead son. 38 At Gilgal he healeth the deadly | in thither to eat bread. pottage. 42 He satisfieth an hundred men with 9 And she said unto her husband, Behold twenty loaves.
now, I perceive that this is an holy man of Now there cried a certain woman of the wives God, which passeth by us continually. of the sons of the prophets unto Elisha, saying, 10 Let us make a little chamber, I pray Thy servant my husband is dead; and thou thee, on the wall; and let us set for him there knowest that thy servant did fear the LORD: a bed, and a table, and a stool, and a candleand the creditor is come to take unto him my stick: and it shall be, when he cometh to us, two sons to be bondmen.
that he shall turn in thither. 2 And Elisha said unto her, What shall I 11 And it fell on a day, that he came thido for thee? tell me, what hast thou in the ther, and he turned into the chamber, and lay house? And she said, Thine handmaid hath | there. not any thing in the house, save a pot of oil. 12 And he said to Gehazi his servant, Call
3 Then he said, Go, borrow thee vessels | this Shunammite. And when he had called abroad of all thy neighbours, even empty ves- | her, she stood before him. sels ; 'borrow not a few.
13 And he said unto him, Say now unto 4 And when thou art come in, thou shalt her, Behold, thou hast been careful for us with shut the door upon thee and upon thy sons, all this care ; what is to be done for thee? and shalt pour out into all those vessels, and wouldest thou be spoken for to the king, or to thou shalt set aside that which is full.
the captain of the host ? And she answered, 5 So she went from him, and shut the door I dwell among mine own people. upon her and upon her sons, who brought the 14 And he said, What then is to be done vessels to her ; and she poured out.
for her? And Gehazi answered, Verily she 6 And it came to pass, when the vessels hath no child, and her husband is old. were full, that she said unto her son, Bring me 15 And he said, Call her. And when he yet a vessel. And he said unto her, There is had called her, she stood in the door. not a vessel more. And the oil stayed.
16 And he said, 'About this season, ac7 Then she came and told the man of God. cording to the time of life, thou shalt embrace And he said, Go, sell the oil, and pay thy 'debt, a son. And she said, Nay, my lord, thou man and live thou and thy children of the rest. I of God, do not lie unto thine handmaid.
8 | And it fell on a day, that Elisha 17 And the woman conceived, and bare a 1 Or, scant not. ? Or, creditor. Heb. there was a day. Heb. laid hold on him. 6 Gen. 18. 10. Heb. set time.
son at that season that Elisha had said unto 1 32 And when Elisha was come into the her, according to the time of life.
house, behold, the child was dead, and laid 18 9 And when the child was grown, it! upon his bed. fell on a day, that he went out to his father to 33 He went in therefore, and shut the door the reapers.
upon them twain, and prayed unto the LORD. 19 And he said unto his father, My head, 34 And he went up, and lay upon the child, my head. And he said to a lad, Carry him and put his mouth upon his mouth, and his to his mother.
eyes upon his eyes, and his hands upon his 20 And when he had taken him, and brought hands: and he stretched himself upon the hiin to his mother, he sat on her knees till child; and the flesh of the child waxed warm. noon, and then died.
35 Then he returned, and walked in the 21 And she went up, and laid him on the house to and fro; and went up, and stretched bed of the man of God, and shut the door upon himself upon him ; and the child sneezed him, and went out.
seven times, and the child opened his eyes. 22 And she called unto her husband, and 36 And he called Gehazi, and said, Call said, Send me, I pray thee, one of the young this Shunammite. So he called her. And men, and one of the asses, that I may run to the when she was come in unto him, he said, Take man of God, and come again.
up thy son. 23 And he said, Wherefore wilt thou go to 37 Then she went in, and fell at his feet, him to day ? it is neither new moon, nor sab- and bowed herself to the ground, and took up bath. And she said, It shall be 'well.
her son, and went out. 24 Then she saddled an ass, and said to her | 38 | And Elisha came again to Gilgal: and servant, Drive, and go forward ; $slack not there was a dearth in the land ; and the sons of thy riding for me, except I bid thee.
the prophets were sitting before him: and he 25 So she went and came unto the man of said unto his servant, Set on the great pot, and God to mount Carmel. And it came to pass, seethe pottage for the sons of the prophets. when the man of God saw her afar off, that he 39 And one went out into the field to gather said to Gehazi his servant, Behold, yonder is herbs, and found a wild vine, and gathered that Shunaminite:
thereof wild gourds his lap full, and came and 26 Run now, I pray thee, to meet her, and shred them into the pot of pottage : for they say unto her, Is it well with thee? is it well knew them not. with thy husband ? is it well with the child ? | 40 So they poured out for the men to eat. And she answered, It is well.
And it came to pass, as they were eating of 27 And when she came to the man of God the pottage, that they cried out, and said, o to the hill, she caught him by the feet: but thou man of God, there is death in the pot. Gehazi came near to thrust her away. And And they could not eat thereof. the man of God said, Let her alone ; for her 41 But he said, Then bring meal. And soul is ovexed within her: and the LORD he cast it into the pot; and he said, Pour out hath hid it from me, and hath not told me. for the people, that they may eat. And there
28 Then she said, Did I desire a son of was no Täharm in the pot. my lord ? did I not say, Do not deceive me? 42 And there came a man from Baal
29 Then he said to Gehazi, Gird up thy shalisha, and brought the man of God bread of loins, and take my staff in thine hand, and go the firstfruits, twenty loaves of barley, and full thy way: if thou meet any man, salute him not; ears of corn 'in the husk thereof. And he and if any salute thee, answer him not again : said, Give unto the people, that they may eat. and lay my staff upon the face of the child. L 43 And his servitor said, What, should I
30 And the mother of the child said, As the set this before an hundred men? He said Lord liveth, and as thy soul liveth, I will not again, Give the people, that they may eat: leave thee. And he arose, and followed her. for thus saith the LORD, "sThey shall eat, and
31 And Gehazi passed on before them, and shall leave thereof. laid the staff upon the face of the child ; but 44 So he set it before them, and they did there was neither voice, nor "hearing. Where- eat, and left thereof, according to the word of fore he went again to meet him, and told him, the LORD. saying, The child is not awaked. 7 leb. peace. 8 Heb. restrain not for me to ride. 9 Ileb, by his feet.
14 Or, in his scrip, or, garment.
15 John 6. 11.
10 Heb, bitter.
11 Heh. attention.
12 Heb, once nither, and once thither.
13 Heb. evil thing.