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Elisha Prophesies Hope for Relief

Elisha said, “Hear the word of Yahweh: ‘Thus says Yahweh, “At this time tomorrow a seah of wheat bread flour will sell for a shekel, and two seahs of barley for a shekel in the gate of Samaria.’” Then the officer on whom the king relied[a] answered the man of God and said, “Look, even if Yahweh is making windows in heaven, could this thing happen?” And he said, “Look, you will be seeing it with your eyes, but you shall not eat from it there.”

Four Lepers Report the Departure of the Arameans

Now four men who had a skin disease were at the entrance of the gate, and they said to each other,[b] “Why are we sitting here until we die? If we say, ‘Let us go into the city,’ the famine is in the city, and we shall die there; but if we sit here, we shall die. So then, come, let us fall into the camp of the Arameans. If they let us live, we shall live; but if they kill us, then we shall die.” So they got up at dusk to go to the camp of the Arameans. They went up to the edge of the camp of the Arameans, and look, there was no man there! Now the Lord had caused the camp of the Arameans to hear the sound of chariots, the sound of horses, and the sound of a great army. So they said to one another,[c] “Look, the king of Israel has hired the kings of the Hittites and the kings of Egypt to come against us!” So they got up and fled at dusk and left their tents, their horses, their donkeys, and the camp as it was, and they fled for their lives. When these who had the skin disease came to the edge of the camp, they went into a certain tent and they ate, drank, and took from there silver and gold and clothes. Then they went and hid them, then returned and came to another tent, and they took from there and went and hid them.

Then they said to one another,[d] “We are not doing right. This day is a day of good news! If we are silent and wait until the light of morning, they will find us and we will be punished.[e] So then, come, let us go and tell the house of the king.” 10 When they came, they called to the gatekeepers of the city and told them, saying, “We came to the camp of the Arameans, and behold, there was no man or the voice of a man there! Only the horses and the donkeys were tied up, and the tents were left as they were.” 11 Then the gatekeepers called and told it inside the house of the king. 12 The king got up in the night and said to his servants, “Please let me tell you what the Arameans have done to us. The Arameans know that we are hungry, so they went out from the camp to hide in the field, saying, ‘When they go out from the city, we shall seize them alive and go into the city.’” 13 Then one of his servants replied and said, “Please let them take five of the remaining horses which remain in the city; behold, they are like all of the multitude of Israel that remain in it; they are like all the multitude of Israel who have perished. Let us send and see.” 14 So he took two charioteer horsemen, and the king sent after the camp of the Arameans, saying, “Go, find out,” 15 and they went after them to the Jordan. Look, all of the way was littered with clothes and equipment which the Arameans had thrown away in their haste. Then the messengers returned and told the king.

Prophecy Fulfilled

16 So the people went out and plundered the camp of the Arameans. A seah of wheat flour went for a shekel and two seahs of barley went for a shekel according to the word of Yahweh. 17 Then the king appointed the officer he was depending on over the gate, but the people trampled him and he died, according to that which the man of God had said which he spoke when the king came down to him. 18 It happened as the man of God spoke to the king, saying, “Two seahs of barley shall be sold for a shekel and a seah of wheat flour for a shekel at this time tomorrow in the gate of Samaria.” 19 Then the officer had replied to the man of God and said, “Look, even if Yahweh is opening the windows in heaven, could this thing happen?” And he had said, “Look you are about to see it with your eyes, but you will not eat from it.” 20 So it had happened to him; the people trampled him in the gate and he died.


  1. 2 Kings 7:2 Literally “whom the king was leaning on his hand”
  2. 2 Kings 7:3 Literally “each to his friend”
  3. 2 Kings 7:6 Literally “each to his brother”
  4. 2 Kings 7:9 Literally “each to his friend”
  5. 2 Kings 7:9 Literally “guiltiness”