2 Kings, Chapter 8

- י ה ה -

Elisha Weeps Before Hazael About Israel’s Fate

Elisha warns the Shunaamite woman that a long famine is about to afflict the land and urges her to temporarily relocate to Philistia. When the woman returns home, she discovers that her land has been usurped. Gehazi, Elisha’s servant, describes to the king of Israel how Elisha had miraculously brought the Shunaamite’s son back to life. Joram decides to give her back her land and all of her possessions.

Elisha goes to Damascus. Benhadad, king of Aram, is ill. He sends Hazael to Elisha with gifts in order to ask him whether he will survive. Elisha reveals to Benhadad’s messenger that his master will recover from this illness, but die under other circumstances. He then starts sobbing. When Hazael asks him why he is crying, Elisha replies that he, Hazael, will be the next king of Aram and the Israelites will be tormented under his rule. Elisha delivers an important message to Hazael. Despite the pain this causes him, he knows he must share information with the new king of Aram. Hazael becoming king is the fulfillment of one of Elijah’s prophecies-and part of the historical process Israel must undergo towards salvation.

“And Gehazi said, My lord, O king, this is the woman, and this is her son, whom Elisha restored to life״(2 Kings 8:5)

“Go, say unto him, Thou mayest certainly recover: howbeit the LORD hath shewed me that he shall surely die” (2 Kings 8:10)

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