Sunday, August 17, 2014

Lecture Six: Prophets and Kings of the North

Structure of 2nd Kings 1–17

2 Kgs 1:1–8:29 – Continuation of Israel and the prophets

2 Kgs 9:1–12:21 – Revolution and reform

2 Kgs 13:1–17:41 – Israel slides into disaster

2nd Kings according to puppets…

Elijah Taken Up to Heaven (2:1-18)

Elijah and Elisha journey together

From Gilgal to Bethel

Elisha refuses to leave Elijah’s side

Prophets foretell Elijah’s departure, Elisha says not to speak of it

Arrival at Jordan River

Elisha refuses to leave Elijah’s side

Elijah strikes river with his cloak, river parts

Both men cross over on “dry ground”

Elisha’s request:

“Let me inherit a double portion of your spirit.”

Elijah's response:

“You have asked a difficult thing, yet if you see me when I am taken from you, it will be yours—otherwise, it will not.”

Chariots of fire appear, Elijah taken up to heaven in whirlwind

Elisha cries out, “My father! My father! The chariots and horsemen of Israel!”

Elisha receives Elijah’s cloak, parts river, returns

Reaction of other prophets:

“Look! The spirit of Elijah has fallen upon Elisha!”

Unsuccessful search for Elijah, Elisha says “I told you so.”

Healing of the Water (2:19-22)

Elisha stayed at Jericho and the people told him the water was no good.

Elisha threw some salt in the water and the water was “healed.”

Elisha is Jeered (2:23-25)

Elisha went from Jericho up into the land towards Bethel.

On the way, he was jeered by the boys of the town.

They chanted, “Get out of here, baldy!”

Elisha cursed them in the name of the LORD.

Two bears came out of the woods and mauled 42 of the boys.

Elisha continued on his way.

Moab Revolts (3:1-27)

Joram was king of Israel for 12 years.

He was evil, but not as evil as Ahab.

Fought against Moab because they stopped paying tribute.

Judah and Edom joined with him in battle.

Wandered in desert for a week, ran out of water

Inquired of Elisha the Prophet

Elisha can’t stand Joram

Foretells victorious outcome

In the morning, Moabite army sees sun reflecting off pools of water in the valley, assumes it’s the blood of their enemies.

Moabites go out to loot, but are quickly surrounded by the three armies.

The battle

Fierce fight, Moabites fail to kill Edom’s king

King of Moab sacrifices his son on the wall

“The fury against Israel was great; they withdrew and returned to their own land.”

The Widow’s Olive Oil (4:1-7)

A fellow prophet dies

Widow cannot pay his debts

The collector is coming to take her two sons as payment

Widow inquires of Elisha

Instruction to gather jars from neighbors, pour remaining oil into jars

Oil miraculously never runs out, used to pay debt

The Shunammite Woman (4:8-37)

Elisha’s arrival at Shunem

Fed by woman and her family, invited to come back anytime

They build him a room with a cot on their roof

Elisha inquires of disciple Gehazi

Desires to repay the woman’s kindness, learns she is barren

Prophesies, “In one year you will have a son.”

She says, “Don’t get my hopes up like that.” Elisha’s word comes true.

The woman’s son

The boy gets older, works in fields with his father

Terrible headache one morning, dies at noon in mother’s lap

Son placed on Elisha’s bed, mother searches furiously for Elisha

Finds him on Mount Carmel, grabs his feet and weeps

Elisha unaware of events, Gehazi rebukes woman, Elisha defends her

Gehazi sent to place Elisha’s staff on the boy, no results

Elisha arrives, shuts door behind him and prays

Lays on top of boy – “mouth to mouth, eyes to eyes, hands to hands.”

“…boy’s body grew warm.”

Elisha paces, tries again, boy sneezes seven times and opens eyes

Elisha gives him back to his mother

Death in the Pot (4:38-41)

Elisha had his servant cook up a stew for the prophets.

Somebody added poisonous gourds.

As the prophets began to eat, they started crying out, “There’s death in the pot!”

Elisha added some flour and the stew was fine.

Feeding of a Hundred (4:42-44)

A man showed up with twenty loaves of bread.

Elisha told him to distribute it among the men.

There were 100 men present, and after they all ate and had their fill, there was still bread left over.

Naaman Healed of Leprosy (5:1-27)

Namaan was commander of the Aramean army.

He had leprosy.

His wife’s Israelite servant girl tells her mistress that Namaan should go be healed by the prophet Elisha.

King of Aram gives Namaan permission to go to Israel, sends letter of peace to King Joram.

Namaan takes gifts of silver, gold and clothing with him.

Joram receives the letter and rips his own clothes

“Am I God? …Why is he sending me people to be cured of leprosy?”

Elisha told Joram to stop freaking out and to send Namaan his way.

Elisha tells Namaan to bathe in the Jordan seven times.

Namaan leaves angry

“I thought he was going to wave his hand over me and cure me… Aren’t the rivers of Damascus better than the Jordan?”

His servants stop him, ask him to at least try this simple task.

Namaan consents, is completely healed.

“Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel.”

Tries to give Elisha gifts, but Elisha refuses them.

Namaan requests a cartload of Israel’s dirt to bring back to Aram, pledges to never again offer sacrifices to any God but Israel’s God.

Gehazi later goes after Namaan, tells him Elisha changed his mind about the gifts, Namaan gives them to Gehazi.

Gehazi hides them in the house.

Later, Elisha confronts Gehazi about this and Gehazi lies to him.

Gehazi and his descendants cursed with Namaan’s leprosy forever

An Axhead Floats (6:1-7)

All the prophets gather at the river, cut down trees to build a meeting place.

One prophet borrows an ax, and while he’s chopping wood the iron axhead flies off and sinks in the river.

Elisha throws a stick in the water, the axhead floats to the surface.

Elisha Traps Blinded Arameans (6:8-23)

Arameans at war with Israel.

God tells Elisha Aramean battle plans, Elisha relays them to Joram.

King of Aram believes there’s a traitor in his midst, informed of Elisha

“Elisha, the prophet who is in Israel, tells the king of Israel the very words you speak in your bedroom.”

Aramean army sets out to attack the city where Elisha is staying.

Elisha’s servant wakes up in the morning to find the city surrounded.

Elisha says, “Don’t be afraid. Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.”

Elisha prays that his servant’s “eyes would be opened.”

The servant looks up again and sees that the hills are full of a second army – one of fiery horses and chariots to protect Elisha.

Arameans attack, Elisha prays, enemies struck with blindness.

Elisha tells them they’re at the wrong place, guides them to Samaria.

In Samaria, Elisha prays again, their sight is restored, they realize they’ve been trapped.

King Joram asks Elisha if he should kill them all, Elisha says no.

Elisha makes Joram feed his enemies and send them back home.

After this, many Arameans stop raiding Israel.

Famine in Besieged Samaria (6:24–7:20)

Ben-Hadad of Aram lays siege to Samaria, city runs out of food.

King Joram walks through besieged city, sees woman calling for help.

She says she and another woman agreed to eat their sons, but after they killed her own son and ate him the other woman changed her mind.

Joram puts on sackcloth, swears to cut off Elisha’s head that very day.

Elisha and the elders gather in a house and lock the door.

Joram and his officers arrive.

“This disaster is from the LORD. Why should I wait for the LORD any longer?”

Elisha tells Joram food will arrive tomorrow.

King’s chief officer scoffs, Elisha predicts the scoffer won’t get to eat.

Four lepers leave the city to surrender to the Arameans, but find the Aramean camp is deserted.

God had caused the army to hear the sound of chariots so they quickly fled and left everything behind, assuming the Egyptians and Hittites had come to rescue Israel.

Lepers eat food and gather gold left behind.

They feel guilty for hoarding and go back to share the good news with the rest of the city.

The king thinks it might be a trap so he sends his officers out to investigate.

All the people rush out of the city to get food.

The officer who had scoffed at Elisha is trampled in the stampede.

Hazael Murders Ben-Hadad (8:7-15)

Elisha journeys to Damascus, capital of Aram

Ben-Hadad is very ill, sends servant Hazael to inquire of Elisha

Elisha’s response:

“Your master will die, but tell him he’ll live.”

Stares intently at Hazael until he feels embarrassed.

Starts weeping, claims knowledge of Hazael’s future crimes against Israel

Tells Hazael he will replace Ben-Hadad as king of Aram

Hazael becomes king of Aram

He returns, tells Ben-Hadad he will recover

Next day, takes a wet cloth and suffocates Ben-Hadad

Jehu Anointed King of Israel (9:1-13)

Elisha sends servant to anoint Jehu king over Israel

Servant runs in, pours oil on his head, tells him he must destroy Ahab’s house, and runs off.

Jehu’s friends ask what that “maniac” wanted, Jehu’s like, “Oh, you know…”

His friends press him, he confesses he’s now king, and they honor him.

Jehu Kills Joram and Ahaziah (9:14-29)

Joram spies an army coming towards his palace

He sends a messenger, saying, “Do you come in peace?”

Messenger returns, saying:

“The man in charge must be Jehu – he’s driving like a maniac as usual!”

“The man in charge says, ‘What do you have to do with peace, Joram?’”

Joram flees, but is shot down by Jehu

Joram’s body tossed into what was once Naboth’s vineyard

Jehu also kills Ahaziah King of Judah who had been visiting Joram

Jezebel Killed (9:30-37)

Jezebel puts on makeup, sits in second story window, calls to Jehu.

“Have you come in peace, you Zimri, you murderer of your master?”

Jezebel’s eunuchs side with Jehu and throw her out the window.

Jezebel hits the ground and “her blood spattered on the wall.”

Jehu and his men go inside to eat lunch, and their horses trample her.

When they return to bury her, they only find her skull, hands, and feet.

Elijah’s prophecy affirmed – “dogs will devour Jezebel...”

Ahab’s Family Killed (10:1-17)

Servants side with Jehu, behead Ahab’s 70 sons, send heads in baskets to Jehu, Jehu piles them up at gate of Jezreel.

Jehu kills all of Ahab’s friends and priests.

On the side, he kills some relatives of Judah’s now former king.

Servants of Baal Killed (10:18-36)

Jehu tells priests of Baal he will serve Baal more faithfully than Ahab did, he invites them all to come to a great sacrifice.

After the sacrifice, Jehu slaughters the priests

God promised to reward Jehu for his faithfulness.

However, the text says that sometimes Jehu was unfaithful by worshiping the golden calves.

Jehu reigned over Israel for 28 years.

When he died, his son Jehoahaz succeeded him as king.

Jehoahaz King of Israel (13:1-9)

He reigned for 17 years, but he was evil.

Israel still refused to repent even after God allowed the Arameans to wipe out most of their army.

Jehoash King of Israel (13:10-19)

He reigned for 16 years, but was also evil.

Jehoash visits Elisha

Elisha had been sick for a long time and would soon die

Jehoash weeps in Elisha’s presence, saying, “My father! My father! The chariots and horsemen of Israel!”

Elisha’s last message:

“Take your bow and shoot towards Aram – you will defeat them!”

“Strike the ground with your arrows.”

Jehoash strikes the ground three times, but stops.

Elisha is angry, and tells him if he had struck it more times he would have had greater victory.

“You will only have three victories before Aram returns.”

Death of Elisha (13:20-25)

Elisha dies and is buried in a tomb.

Some time later, Moabite raiders show up during another funeral for a different family.

The family quickly throws the body into Elisha’s tomb and runs.

“When the body touched Elisha’s bones, the man came to life and stood up on his feet.”

The text says that later Jehoash was only able to defeat the Arameans three times, but God was still compassionate towards His sinful people for the sake of His covenant with Abraham.

Furthermore…it was Moses and Elijah who appeared when Jesus was transfigured on the mountain.

Jeroboam II King of Israel (14:23-29)

41 year reign. He was bad.

Zechariah King of Israel (15:8-12)

6 month reign. He was bad.

Assassinated by Shallum

Shallum King of Israel (15:13-16)

1 month reign. He was bad.

Assassinated by Menahem

Menahem King of Israel (15:17-22)

10 year reign. He was Bad.
Israel became a vassal to the Assyrians.

Pekahiah King of Israel (15:23-26)

2 year reign. He was bad.

Assassinated by Pekah.

Pekah King of Israel (15:27-31)

29 year reign. He was bad.

Tiglath-Pileser invaded Israel and took many cities,
including all of the territories of Gilead and Naphtali.
Tiglath-Pileser deported many Israelites to Assyria.

Assassinated by Hoshea

Hoshea Last King of Israel (17:1-5)

9 year reign. He was bad.
Israel was still a vassal to the Assyrians,
but Hoshea refused to pay tribute to them
and made an alliance with So King of Egypt.

Shalmaneser King of Assyria attacked Israel
and put Hoshea in prison.

The Assyrians invaded the entire land
and laid siege to it for three years.

Israel Exiled Because of Sin (17:6-23)

Shalmaneser deported all the Israelites to Assyria, Holah, Gozan, and Media.

“All this took place because the Israelites had sinned against the LORD their God, who had brought them up out of Egypt from under the power of Pharaoh king of Egypt.”

“The LORD warned Israel and Judah through all his prophets…”

“But they would not listen and were as stiff-necked as their ancestors, who did not trust in the LORD their God.”

“They made golden calves to worship…”

“They worshiped all the starry host…”

“They worshiped Baal…”

“They sacrificed their sons and daughters in the fire…”

“They practiced divination…”

“Therefore the LORD rejected all the people of Israel; He afflicted them and gave them into the hands of plunderers, until He thrust them from His presence.”

“So the people of Israel were taken from their homeland into exile in Assyria, and they are still there.”

Samaria Resettled (17:24-41)

“The king of Assyria brought people from Babylon, Kuthah, Avva, Hamath and Sepharvaim and settled them in the towns of Samaria to replace the Israelites.”

God sent lions to attack the people who had replaced Israel because of the evil things they did.

The king of Assyria sent back one of the captive Israelite priests to teach the new people in the land how to worship the God of that land.

The people, who came to be known as Samaritans, worshiped Yahweh, but also worshiped other gods, and they sacrificed their children in the fire.

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