2 Kings 8-9 part 5

 

2 Kings 8:1 Then Elisha spoke to the woman whose son he had restored to life, saying, "Arise and go, you and your household, and stay wherever you can; for the LORD has called for a famine, and furthermore, it will come upon the land for seven years."2 So the woman arose and did according to the saying of the man of God, and she went with her household and dwelt in the land of the Philistines seven years.3 It came to pass, at the end of seven years, that the woman returned from the land of the Philistines; and she went to make an appeal to the king for her house and for her land.4 Then the king talked with Gehazi, the servant of the man of God, saying, "Tell me, please, all the great things Elisha has done."5 Now it happened, as he was telling the king how he had restored the dead to life, that there was the woman whose son he had restored to life, appealing to the king for her house and for her land. And Gehazi said, "My lord, O king, this is the woman, and this is her son whom Elisha restored to life."6 And when the king asked the woman, she told him. So the king appointed a certain officer for her, saying, "Restore all that was hers, and all the proceeds of the field from the day that she left the land until now."

 

We learn more about this Shunammite woman who was willing to go out of her way to provide for Elisha. This story also shows us that that 2 Kings is not always in chronological order because these events must have taken place before 2 Kings 5 where Naaman was healed of his leprosy and the reason is because Gehazi was made a leper for lying to Naaman and Elisha. But, in our text, he is called the servant of Elisha and he talking directly to the King, which indicates to me that he does not have leprosy yet because a king wouldnít be inclined to be near a man with leprosy. In this continuation, we find Elisha is taking care of this woman once again. First, he warned about the 7 year famine and because of her association with Elisha, the King was willing to restore all that belonged to her.

 

2 Kings 8:7 Then Elisha went to Damascus, and Ben-Hadad king of Syria was sick; and it was told him, saying, "The man of God has come here."8 And the king said to Hazael, "Take a present in your hand, and go to meet the man of God, and inquire of the LORD by him, saying, 'Shall I recover from this disease?' "9 So Hazael went to meet him and took a present with him, of every good thing of Damascus, forty camel-loads; and he came and stood before him, and said, "Your son Ben-Hadad king of Syria has sent me to you, saying, 'Shall I recover from this disease?' "10 And Elisha said to him, "Go, say to him, 'You shall certainly recover.' However the LORD has shown me that he will really die."11 Then he set his countenance in a stare until he was ashamed; and the man of God wept.12 And Hazael said, "Why is my lord weeping?" He answered, "Because I know the evil that you will do to the children of Israel: Their strongholds you will set on fire, and their young men you will kill with the sword; and you will dash their children, and rip open their women with child."13 So Hazael said, "But what is your servant -- a dog, that he should do this gross thing?" And Elisha answered, "The LORD has shown me that you will become king over Syria."

 

Last week we learned that Ben-Hadad was trying to capture Elisha, but now he is seeking his favor. He sends his servant Hazel with 40 camel loads of goods as a gift offering for Elisha to tell him of his fate. He wanted to know if he would live or die. Now, Elisha new what was on this servants mind and that he already knew that he was going to deceive and kill his master. This is why Elisha, tells him to go ahead and tell your master he will recover, but the Lord lets Elisha know that Ben-Hadad is going to die by the hands this servant. You can tell that Hazael was guilty as charged because he would not look Elisha in the eyes and then Elisha began to cry because God also revealed to him how this servant would become King and how he would inflict devastation on the Kingdom of Israel.

 

2 Kings 8:14 Then he departed from Elisha, and came to his master, who said to him, "What did Elisha say to you?" And he answered, "He told me you would surely recover."15 But it happened on the next day that he took a thick cloth and dipped it in water, and spread it over his face so that he died; and Hazael reigned in his place.

 

Just as Elisha had said, Hazael deceives Ben_Hadad and then kills him the next day.

 

In verses 16 Ė 24 we are given a quick summary of what happened during Jehoramís reign who was the son of Jehoshaphat. It can get very confusing because sometimes Jehoram is called Joram. The reason this is confusing is because the king of Israel at this time names is Joram and he was in the 5th year of his reign when Jehoram began his reign over Judah. Since our verses donít give us much detail about Jehoram I want us to look at what 2 Chr. 21 shows us.

 

2 Chronicles 21:1 And Jehoshaphat rested with his fathers, and was buried with his fathers in the City of David. Then Jehoram his son reigned in his place.2 He had brothers, the sons of Jehoshaphat: Azariah, Jehiel, Zechariah, Azaryahu, Michael, and Shephatiah; all these were the sons of Jehoshaphat king of Israel.3 Their father gave them great gifts of silver and gold and precious things, with fortified cities in Judah; but he gave the kingdom to Jehoram, because he was the firstborn.4 Now when Jehoram was established over the kingdom of his father, he strengthened himself and killed all his brothers with the sword, and also others of the princes of Israel.5 Jehoram was thirty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned eight years in Jerusalem.6 And he walked in the way of the kings of Israel, just as the house of Ahab had done, for he had the daughter of Ahab as a wife; and he did evil in the sight of the LORD. 7 Yet the LORD would not destroy the house of David, because of the covenant that He had made with David, and since He had promised to give a lamp to him and to his sons forever.

 

This shows you how much influence a wife can have on her husband. Even though Jhosphat was a god fearing man and was most likely a good example to his son. His influence was overridden by this daughter of Ahabís. So, he kills his brothers in cold blood. Even though God was not pleased with his behavior, he would not destroy the house of David. This shows that God keeps his covenants and he is very merciful.

 

2 Chronicles 21:8 In his days the Edomites revolted against Judah's authority, and made a king over themselves.9 So Jehoram went out with his officers, and all his chariots with him. And he rose by night and attacked the Edomites who had surrounded him and the captains of the chariots.10 Thus Edom has been in revolt against Judah's authority to this day. At that time Libnah revolted against his rule, because he had forsaken the LORD God of his fathers.11  Moreover he made high places in the mountains of Judah, and caused the inhabitants of Jerusalem to commit harlotry, and led Judah astray.

 

So, he fights against the Edomites for their rebellions, but the worse thing he does is leading is nation away from God by return them back to idol worship. These events happened while Elijah was still on this earth as we are about to see.

 

2 Chronicles 21:12 And a letter came to him from Elijah the prophet, saying, Thus says the LORD God of your father David: Because you have not walked in the ways of Jehoshaphat your father, or in the ways of Asa king of Judah,13 but have walked in the way of the kings of Israel, and have made Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem to play the harlot like the harlotry of the house of Ahab, and also have killed your brothers, those of your father's household, who were better than yourself,14 behold, the LORD will strike your people with a serious affliction -- your children, your wives, and all your possessions;15 and you will become very sick with a disease of your intestines, until your intestines come out by reason of the sickness, day by day.

 

God would keep Judah intact, but He would not tolerate Jehoramís behavior. So, Elijah lets him know exactly what will happen to him and his family and it all comes to pass as continue to read.

 

2 Chronicles 21:16 Moreover the LORD stirred up against Jehoram the spirit of the Philistines and the Arabians who were near the Ethiopians.17 And they came up into Judah and invaded it, and carried away all the possessions that were found in the king's house, and also his sons and his wives, so that there was not a son left to him except Jehoahaz, the youngest of his sons.18  After all this the LORD struck him in his intestines with an incurable disease.19 Then it happened in the course of time, after the end of two years, that his intestines came out because of his sickness; so he died in severe pain. And his people made no burning for him, like the burning for his fathers.20 He was thirty-two years old when he became king. He reigned in Jerusalem eight years and, to no one's sorrow, departed. However they buried him in the City of David, but not in the tombs of the kings.

 

It is a shame that Jehoram chose to oppose God and be bad king. Not only did his family pay for his choice, but he suffered with this internal disease for two years that caused him great pain. There shows us there isnít any advantage in opposing God.

2 Kings 9:1 And Elisha the prophet called one of the sons of the prophets, and said to him, "Get yourself ready, take this flask of oil in your hand, and go to Ramoth Gilead.2 "Now when you arrive at that place, look there for Jehu the son of Jehoshaphat, the son of Nimshi, and go in and make him rise up from among his associates, and take him to an inner room.3 "Then take the flask of oil, and pour it on his head, and say, 'Thus says the LORD: "I have anointed you king over Israel." ' Then open the door and flee, and do not delay."

 

Jehu is going to be the next king of Israel, but interesting is that Elijah was originally told to anoint Jehu as King back in 1 Kings 19:16, but he passed this responsibility on to Elisha and Elisha has one of the sons of the prophets actually do the anointing. Now, I am not for sure why he is told to anoint and run, but maybe is for his safety.

 

2 Kings 9:4 So the young man, the servant of the prophet, went to Ramoth Gilead.5 And when he arrived, there were the captains of the army sitting; and he said, "I have a message for you, Commander." Jehu said, "For which one of us?" And he said, "For you, Commander."6 Then he arose and went into the house. And he poured the oil on his head, and said to him, "Thus says the LORD God of Israel: 'I have anointed you king over the people of the LORD, over Israel.7 'You shall strike down the house of Ahab your master, that I may avenge the blood of My servants the prophets, and the blood of all the servants of the LORD, at the hand of Jezebel.8 'For the whole house of Ahab shall perish; and I will cut off from Ahab all the males in Israel, both bond and free.9 'So I will make the house of Ahab like the house of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and like the house of Baasha the son of Ahijah.10 'The dogs shall eat Jezebel on the plot of ground at Jezreel, and there shall be none to bury her.' " And he opened the door and fled.††††† ††

 

So, this servant of Elisha does as he is told and he anoints Jehu. Now, I want you to image yourself as Jehu. There you are minding your own business when a man comes and anoints you with oil and gives you a word from God. Can you imagine how overwhelmed you would have felt knowing that God wants you to be king and how you must kill the household that you have been loyal to? You know this had to be shocking to him. God had promised this would happen to Ahabís household back in 1 Kings 21:21-26. It would have happened sooner if Ahab had not repented. Because of his repentance, God put off the destruction of his household until now under Joramís reign as king. This would be the end of his family just as was the end of house of Jeroboam (1 Kings 15:29) and the house of Baasha (1 Kings 16:9-12).

 

2 Kings 9:11 Then Jehu came out to the servants of his master, and one said to him, "Is all well? Why did this madman come to you?" And he said to them, "You know the man and his babble."12 And they said, "A lie! Tell us now." So he said, "Thus and thus he spoke to me, saying, 'Thus says the LORD: "I have anointed you king over Israel." ' "13 Then each man hastened to take his garment and put it under him on the top of the steps; and they blew trumpets, saying, "Jehu is king!"

 

 

These servants consider this man of God as a madman. It not uncommon for people to think of these prophets as being crazy because they tell them things they donít think will happen. In a similar way, some view Christians as being crazy because they have such a passion for proclaiming the truth. At first Jehu tries to deny that that message said anything, but the servant knew better and they wanted to know the truth. So, he tells them and they quickly accept the word of this man as being true. They show their excitement and dedication to Jehu by putting the garments under him and blowing the trumpet and proclaiming him King.

 

2 Kings 9:14 So Jehu the son of Jehoshaphat, the son of Nimshi, conspired against Joram. (Now Joram had been defending Ramoth Gilead, he and all Israel, against Hazael king of Syria.15 But King Joram had returned to Jezreel to recover from the wounds which the Syrians had inflicted on him when he fought with Hazael king of Syria.) And Jehu said, "If you are so minded, let no one leave or escape from the city to go and tell it in Jezreel."16 So Jehu rode in a chariot and went to Jezreel, for Joram was laid up there; and Ahaziah king of Judah had come down to see Joram.

 

We find out that Joram is injured as they were battling the Syrians and he go to Jezreel to recover and the king Judah comes to visit him. In the meantime Jehu orders no one to reveal that he has been anointed king because if word got out there would be a civil war until one king was dead. He wanted to avoid this, so he makes his way to Jezreel so he can kill Joram.

 

2 Kings 9:17 Now a watchman stood on the tower in Jezreel, and he saw the company of Jehu as he came, and said, "I see a company of men." And Joram said, "Get a horseman and send him to meet them, and let him say, 'Is it peace?' "18 So the horseman went to meet him, and said, "Thus says the king: 'Is it peace?' " And Jehu said, "What have you to do with peace? Turn around and follow me." So the watchman reported, saying, "The messenger went to them, but is not coming back."19 Then he sent out a second horseman who came to them, and said, "Thus says the king: 'Is it peace?' " And Jehu answered, "What have you to do with peace? Turn around and follow me."20 So the watchman reported, saying, "He went up to them and is not coming back; and the driving is like the driving of Jehu the son of Nimshi, for he drives furiously!"

 

When they see Jehu coming they sounded the alarms and sent out a messenger to find out if this was a peaceful visit. When the 1st man failed to return a second was sent and he didnít return either. Now, Jehu and his men were driving their horses as hard and as fast as they could to Jezreel.

 

2 Kings 9:21 Then Joram said, "Make ready." And his chariot was made ready. Then Joram king of Israel and Ahaziah king of Judah went out, each in his chariot; and they went out to meet Jehu, and met him on the property of Naboth the Jezreelite.22 Now it happened, when Joram saw Jehu, that he said, "Is it peace, Jehu?" So he answered, "What peace, as long as the harlotries of your mother Jezebel and her witchcraft are so many?"23 Then Joram turned around and fled, and said to Ahaziah, "Treachery, Ahaziah!"24 Now Jehu drew his bow with full strength and shot Jehoram between his arms; and the arrow came out at his heart, and he sank down in his chariot.25 Then Jehu said to Bidkar his captain, "Pick him up, and throw him into the tract of the field of Naboth the Jezreelite; for remember, when you and I were riding together behind Ahab his father, that the LORD laid this burden upon him:26 'Surely I saw yesterday the blood of Naboth and the blood of his sons,' says the LORD, 'and I will repay you in this plot,' says the LORD. Now therefore, take and throw him on the plot of ground, according to the word of the LORD."

 

Now, you would think that Joram would have figured out that something was wrong when both of his messengers did not return, but apparently it did not. We find the king himself and the king of Judah ride out to meet Jehu and his men. Because of Godís providence, these men end up meeting on Nabothís property. This was the man that wanted to hang on to his vineyard and would not sell it to Ahab, but Jezebel plotted and had him killed and we find out in verse 26 that not only was Naboth killed, but all his sons were killed as well. This makes sense because if the sons were alive they would inherit his vineyard, but them all dead it could become Ahabís property. All this happens 1 Kings 21. We also find out that God promised that Nabothís blood would be repaid it that very spot. This shows how accurate God promises are because if Jehu had rode faster or slower or Joram left earlier or later, they would not have meet on the property of Naboth and so we see Godís providence at work, so that His promise would be fulfilled.


We also see there would be no peace as long a Jezebel was alive because she was wicked women who had helped cause the children of Israel to turn away from God and to embrace other Godís, which was consider as adultery in Godís eyes.

 

2 Kings 9:27 But when Ahaziah king of Judah saw this, he fled by the road to Beth Haggan. So Jehu pursued him, and said, "Shoot him also in the chariot." And they shot him at the Ascent of Gur, which is by Ibleam. Then he fled to Megiddo, and died there.28 ∂ And his servants carried him in the chariot to Jerusalem, and buried him in his tomb with his fathers in the City of David.

 

Not only did Jehu kill Joram, he also killed Ahaziah king of Judah.

 

2 Kings 9: 29 In the eleventh year of Joram the son of Ahab, Ahaziah had become king over Judah.30 Now when Jehu had come to Jezreel, Jezebel heard of it; and she put paint on her eyes and adorned her head, and looked through a window.31 Then, as Jehu entered at the gate, she said, "Is it peace, Zimri, murderer of your master?"32 And he looked up at the window, and said, "Who is on my side? Who?" So two or three eunuchs looked out at him.33 Then he said, "Throw her down." So they threw her down, and some of her blood spattered on the wall and on the horses; and he trampled her underfoot.34 And when he had gone in, he ate and drank. Then he said, "Go now, see to this accursed woman, and bury her, for she was a king's daughter."35 So they went to bury her, but they found no more of her than the skull and the feet and the palms of her hands.36 Therefore they came back and told him. And he said, "This is the word of the LORD, which He spoke by His servant Elijah the Tishbite, saying, 'On the plot of ground at Jezreel dogs shall eat the flesh of Jezebel;37 'and the corpse of Jezebel shall be as refuse on the surface of the field, in the plot at Jezreel, so that they shall not say, "Here lies Jezebel." ' "

 

So, Jehu makes his way to where Jezebel is and upon hearing he was coming she dresses herself up. When she see him coming into the gate she wants to know if he is coming in peace and then she calls him Zimri, murder of your master. She was comparing him to Zimri who had murdered his master Baasha in 1 Kings 16 and who ended up only reigning as king for 7 days before he took his own life. Jehu didnít respond to her, but he commanded some eunuchs to throw her down to her death and she was trampled by the horses. Jehu was used to bloodshed and brutality because he immediately goes and eats and drinks. The he started thinking about Jezebel and decided she should have proper burial because she was the daughter of the king of Sidonians. Not only was she a daughter of a king she was the wife king Ahab, the mother of king Joram of Israel, the grandmother of king Ahaziah of Israel and mother-in-law of king Jehoram of Judah. But, by the time the went to go bury her body the dogs had already eaten most it just as Elijah had said it would happen in 1 Kings 21:23. So, Jehu has accomplished what God has asked him to do so far, but as you will see he is not finished yet.

 

This lesson shows us that God is always working in the background using his providence to bring about his will. When God makes a promise, no mater how specific it is it will come to pass. Finally, these two chapters are great proof text for what is said in,

 

Daniel 2:21 And He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and raises up kings; He gives wisdom to the wise And knowledge to those who have understanding.