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Bible Commentaries

Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible

2 Kings 13

 

 

Introduction

2 Kings 13:1 to 2 Kings 17:6. The remainder of the history of Israel to the fall of Samaria, with the contemporary annals of Judah, is of the nature of chronicle rather than history. There are few interesting narratives like those in the earlier parts of the book. The exceptions are: (a) the death of Elisha (2 Kings 13:14 ff.); (b) the war between Israel and Judah (2 Kings 14:8-16); (c) the repairs of the Temple at Jerusalem by Ahaz (2 Kings 16:10-16). The main sources are: (a) the records of the kings of Israel and Judah; (b) the biography of Elisha; (c) Deuteronomic notes of reigns, etc.; (d) later additions.


Verses 1-9

2 Kings 13:1 to 2 Kings 17:6. The remainder of the history of Israel to the fall of Samaria, with the contemporary annals of Judah, is of the nature of chronicle rather than history. There are few interesting narratives like those in the earlier parts of the book. The exceptions are: (a) the death of Elisha (2 Kings 13:14 ff.); (b) the war between Israel and Judah (2 Kings 14:8-16); (c) the repairs of the Temple at Jerusalem by Ahaz (2 Kings 16:10-16). The main sources are: (a) the records of the kings of Israel and Judah; (b) the biography of Elisha; (c) Deuteronomic notes of reigns, etc.; (d) later additions.

2 Kings 13:1-9. The Reign of Jehoahaz of Israel.—Israel is reduced to the lowest straits by Hazael. Yahweh left of Israel's army 10,000 soldiers and 10 chariots. (Ahab had, according to the inscriptions, 2000 chariots.) For 2 Kings 13:5 a cf. p. 69.


Verses 10-21

2 Kings 13:10-21. The Reign of Joash or Jehoash of Israel.—During this reign Elisha died. He is represented, as in 2 Kings 6, as Israel's champion in the great war with Syria, "the chariots of Israel and the horsemen thereof" (cf. 2 Kings 2:12).

2 Kings 13:16 f. The action is a piece of sympathetic magic (cf. Exodus 17:9-12, Joshua 8:18; Joshua 8:26), but it is something more. The Hebrews thought of the prophetic word as achieving its own fulfilment (Isaiah 55:10 f., Ezekiel 37:4-10). Still more would this be so with the prophetic act, for such the king's act was made by Elisha's participation. It is not mere symbolism, it does not simply announce the future, it sets in motion the forces which are to create the future. Hence the prophet's anger at the king's slackness, when two or three more arrows would have sealed Syria's doom. The eastward direction is rather strange. Damascus, the object to be hit, lay more to the N. than the E. On Aphek see 1 Kings 20:26*.

2 Kings 13:21. In primitive psychology the bones of the dead are often believed to retain the psychical powers possessed in life. See ERE, ii. 791f.—A. S. P.]


Verses 22-25

2 Kings 13:22-25. The Death of Hazael the redoubtable Usurper of the Syrian Throne.—His son Ben-hadad was less successful, and was thrice defeated by Jehoash, in accordance with the prophecy of the dying Elisha.

 


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Bibliography Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on 2 Kings 13:4". "Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/pfc/2-kings-13.html. 1919.

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