2 Kings 6-8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
The Axe Head Recovered
6 Now the sons of the prophets said to Elisha, “Behold now, the place before you where we are living is too limited for us. 2 Please let us go to the Jordan and each of us take from there a beam, and let us make a place there for ourselves where we may live.” So he said, “Go.” 3 Then one said, “Please be willing to go with your servants.” And he [a]answered, “I shall go.” 4 So he went with them; and when they came to the Jordan, they cut down trees. 5 But as one was felling a beam, [b]the axe head fell into the water; and he cried out and said, “Alas, my master! For it was borrowed.” 6 Then the man of God said, “Where did it fall?” And when he showed him the place, he cut off a stick and threw it in there, and made the iron float. 7 He said, “Take it up for yourself.” So he put out his hand and took it.
The Arameans Plot to Capture Elisha
8 Now the king of Aram was warring against Israel; and he [c]counseled with his servants saying, “In such and such a place shall be my camp.” 9 The man of God sent word to the king of Israel saying, “Beware that you do not pass this place, for the Arameans are coming down there.” 10 The king of Israel sent to the place about which the man of God had told him; thus he warned him, so that he guarded himself there, [d]more than once or twice.
11 Now the heart of the king of Aram was enraged over this thing; and he called his servants and said to them, “Will you tell me which of us is for the king of Israel?” 12 One of his servants said, “No, my lord, O king; but Elisha, the prophet who is in Israel, tells the king of Israel the words that you speak in your bedroom.” 13 So he said, “Go and see where he is, that I may send and take him.” And it was told him, saying, “Behold, he is in Dothan.” 14 He sent horses and chariots and a great army there, and they came by night and surrounded the city.
15 Now when the attendant of the man of God had risen early and gone out, behold, an army with horses and chariots was circling the city. And his servant said to him, “Alas, my master! [e]What shall we do?” 16 So he [f]answered, “Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” 17 Then Elisha prayed and said, “O Lord, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.” And the Lord opened the servant’s eyes and he saw; and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. 18 When they came down to him, Elisha prayed to the Lord and said, “Strike this [g]people with blindness, I pray.” So He struck them with blindness according to the word of Elisha. 19 Then Elisha said to them, “This is not the way, nor is this the city; follow me and I will bring you to the man whom you seek.” And he brought them to Samaria.
20 When they had come into Samaria, Elisha said, “O Lord, open the eyes of these men, that they may see.” So the Lord opened their eyes and they saw; and behold, they were in the midst of Samaria. 21 Then the king of Israel when he saw them, said to Elisha, “My father, shall I [h]kill them? Shall I [i]kill them?” 22 He [j]answered, “You shall not [k]kill them. Would you [l]kill those you have taken captive with your sword and with your bow? Set bread and water before them, that they may eat and drink and go to their master.” 23 So he prepared a great feast for them; and when they had eaten and drunk he sent them away, and they went to their master. And the marauding bands of Arameans did not come again into the land of Israel.
The Siege of Samaria—Cannibalism
24 Now it came about after this, that Ben-hadad king of Aram gathered all his army and went up and besieged Samaria. 25 There was a great famine in Samaria; and behold, they besieged it, until a donkey’s head was sold for eighty shekels of silver, and a fourth of a [m]kab of dove’s dung for five shekels of silver. 26 As the king of Israel was passing by on the wall a woman cried out to him, saying, “Help, my lord, O king!” 27 He said, “[n]If the Lord does not help you, from where shall I help you? From the threshing floor, or from the wine press?” 28 And the king said to her, “What [o]is the matter with you?” And she [p]answered, “This woman said to me, ‘Give your son that we may eat him today, and we will eat my son tomorrow.’ 29 So we boiled my son and ate him; and I said to her on the next day, ‘Give your son, that we may eat him’; but she has hidden her son.” 30 When the king heard the words of the woman, he tore his clothes—now he was passing by on the wall—and the people looked, and behold, he had sackcloth [q]beneath on his [r]body. 31 Then he said, “May God do so to me and more also, if the head of Elisha the son of Shaphat [s]remains on him today.”
32 Now Elisha was sitting in his house, and the elders were sitting with him. And the king sent a man from his presence; but before the messenger came to him, he said to the elders, “Do you see how this son of a murderer has sent to take away my head? Look, when the messenger comes, shut the door and [t]hold the door shut against him. Is not the sound of his master’s feet behind him?” 33 While he was still talking with them, behold, the messenger came down to him and he said, “Behold, this evil is from the Lord; why should I wait for the Lord any longer?”
Elisha Promises Food
7 Then Elisha said, “Listen to the word of the Lord; thus says the Lord, ‘Tomorrow about this time a [u]measure of fine flour will be sold for a shekel, and two measures of barley for a shekel, in the gate of Samaria.’” 2 The royal officer on whose hand the king was leaning answered the man of God and said, “Behold, if the Lord should make windows in heaven, could this thing be?” Then he said, “Behold, you will see it with your own eyes, but you will not eat [v]of it.”
Four Lepers Relate Arameans’ Flight
3 Now there were four leprous men at the entrance of the gate; and they said to one another, “Why do we sit here until we die? 4 If we say, ‘We will enter the city,’ then the famine is in the city and we will die there; and if we sit here, we die also. Now therefore come, and let us [w]go over to the camp of the Arameans. If they spare us, we will live; and if they kill us, we will but die.” 5 They arose at twilight to go to the camp of the Arameans; when they came to the outskirts of the camp of the Arameans, behold, there was no one there. 6 For the Lord had caused the army of the Arameans to hear a sound of chariots and a sound of horses, even the sound of a great army, so that they said to one another, “Behold, the king of Israel has hired against us the kings of the Hittites and the kings of the Egyptians, to come upon us.” 7 Therefore they arose and fled in the twilight, and left their tents and their horses and their donkeys, even the camp just as it was, and fled for their life. 8 When these lepers came to the outskirts of the camp, they entered one tent and ate and drank, and carried from there silver and gold and clothes, and went and hid them; and they returned and entered another tent and carried from there also, and went and hid them.
9 Then they said to one another, “We are not doing right. This day is a day of good news, but we are keeping silent; if we wait until morning light, punishment will [x]overtake us. Now therefore come, let us go and tell the king’s household.” 10 So they came and called to the gatekeepers of the city, and they told them, saying, “We came to the camp of the Arameans, and behold, there was no one there, nor the voice of man, only the horses tied and the donkeys tied, and the tents just as they were.” 11 The gatekeepers called and told it within the king’s household. 12 Then the king arose in the night and said to his servants, “I will now tell you what the Arameans have done to us. They know that we are hungry; therefore they have gone from the camp to hide themselves in the field, saying, ‘When they come out of the city, we will capture them alive and get into the city.’” 13 One of his servants said, “Please, let some men take five of the horses which remain, which are left [y]in the city. Behold, they will be in any case like all the multitude of Israel who are left in it; behold, they will be in any case like all the multitude of Israel who have already perished, so let us send and see.” 14 They took therefore two chariots with horses, and the king sent after the army of the Arameans, saying, “Go and see.”
The Promise Fulfilled
15 They went after them to the Jordan, and behold, all the way was full of clothes and equipment which the Arameans had thrown away in their haste. Then the messengers returned and told the king.
16 So the people went out and plundered the camp of the Arameans. Then a [z]measure of fine flour was sold for a shekel and two [aa]measures of barley for a shekel, according to the word of the Lord. 17 Now the king appointed the royal officer on whose hand he leaned [ab]to have charge of the gate; but the people trampled on him at the gate, and he died just as the man of God had said, who spoke when the king came down to him. 18 It happened just as the man of God had spoken to the king, saying, “Two [ac]measures of barley for a shekel and a [ad]measure of fine flour for a shekel, will be sold tomorrow about this time at the gate of Samaria.” 19 Then the royal officer answered the man of God and said, “Now behold, if the Lord should make windows in heaven, could such a thing be?” And he said, “Behold, you will see it with your own eyes, but you will not eat [ae]of it.” 20 And so it happened to him, for the people trampled on him at the gate and he died.
Jehoram Restores the Shunammite’s Land
8 Now Elisha spoke to the woman whose son he had restored to life, saying, “Arise and go [af]with your household, and sojourn wherever you can sojourn; for the Lord has called for a famine, and it will even come on the land for seven years.” 2 So the woman arose and did according to the word of the man of God, and she went with her household and sojourned in the land of the Philistines seven years. 3 At the end of seven years, the woman returned from the land of the Philistines; and she went out to [ag]appeal to the king for her house and for her field. 4 Now the king was talking with Gehazi, the servant of the man of God, saying, “Please relate to me all the great things that Elisha has done.” 5 As he was relating to the king how he had restored to life the one who was dead, behold, the woman whose son he had restored to life [ah]appealed to the king for her house and for her field. And Gehazi said, “My lord, O king, this is the woman and this is her son, whom Elisha restored to life.” 6 When the king asked the woman, she related it to him. So the king appointed for her a certain officer, saying, “Restore all that was hers and all the produce of the field from the day that she left the land even until now.”
Elisha Predicts Evil from Hazael
7 Then Elisha came to Damascus. Now Ben-hadad king of Aram was sick, and it was told him, saying, “The man of God has come here.” 8 The king said to Hazael, “Take a gift in your hand and go to meet the man of God, and inquire of the Lord by him, saying, ‘Will I recover from this sickness?’” 9 So Hazael went to meet him and took a gift in his hand, even every kind of good thing of Damascus, forty camels’ loads; and he came and stood before him and said, “Your son Ben-hadad king of Aram has sent me to you, saying, ‘Will I recover from this sickness?’” 10 Then Elisha said to him, “Go, say to him, ‘You will surely recover,’ but the Lord has shown me that he will certainly die.” 11 He [ai]fixed his gaze steadily on him until he was ashamed, and the man of God wept. 12 Hazael said, “Why does my lord weep?” Then he [aj]answered, “Because I know the evil that you will do to the sons of Israel: their strongholds you will set on fire, and their young men you will kill with the sword, and their little ones you will dash in pieces, and their women with child you will rip up.” 13 Then Hazael said, “But what is your servant, who is but a dog, that he should do this great thing?” And Elisha [ak]answered, “The Lord has shown me that you will be king over Aram.” 14 So he departed from Elisha and returned to his master, who said to him, “What did Elisha say to you?” And he [al]answered, “He told me that you would surely recover.” 15 On the following day, he took the cover and dipped it in water and spread it on his face, so that he died. And Hazael became king in his place.
Another Jehoram Reigns in Judah
16 Now in the fifth year of Joram the son of Ahab king of Israel, Jehoshaphat being then the king of Judah, Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat king of Judah became king. 17 He was thirty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned eight years in Jerusalem. 18 He walked in the way of the kings of Israel, just as the house of Ahab had done, for the daughter of Ahab became his wife; and he did evil in the sight of the Lord. 19 However, the Lord was not willing to destroy Judah, for the sake of David His servant, since He had [am]promised him to give a [an]lamp to him through his sons always.
20 In his days Edom revolted from under the hand of Judah, and made a king over themselves. 21 Then Joram crossed over to Zair, and all his chariots with him. And he arose by night and struck the Edomites who had surrounded him and the captains of the chariots; but his [ao]army fled to their tents. 22 So Edom revolted [ap]against Judah to this day. Then Libnah revolted at the same time. 23 The rest of the acts of Joram and all that he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah?
Ahaziah Succeeds Jehoram in Judah
24 So Joram slept with his fathers and was buried with his fathers in the city of David; and Ahaziah his son became king in his place.
25 In the twelfth year of Joram the son of Ahab king of Israel, Ahaziah the son of Jehoram king of Judah began to reign. 26 Ahaziah was twenty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned one year in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Athaliah the granddaughter of Omri king of Israel. 27 He walked in the way of the house of Ahab and did evil in the sight of the Lord, like the house of Ahab had done, because he was a son-in-law of the house of Ahab.
28 Then he went with Joram the son of Ahab to war against Hazael king of Aram at Ramoth-gilead, and the Arameans [aq]wounded Joram. 29 So King Joram returned to be healed in Jezreel of the wounds which the Arameans had [ar]inflicted on him at Ramah when he fought against Hazael king of Aram. Then Ahaziah the son of Jehoram king of Judah went down to see Joram the son of Ahab in Jezreel because he was sick.
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