April 11th

2 Kings 1-3

  • 1:2 – Reminder: Ahaziah is the king of Israel. It is obviously not good that he’s seeking advice from Baal-zebub (Later Christian theologians will use the name “Beelzebub” to refer to what they considered an especially powerful demon- that name and the demon they believed it represented are derived from this pagan god that Ahaziah is, apparently, worshipping).
  • 1:3 – A little sass from Elijah – clearly God was present, but Ahaziah chooses to consult other gods.
  • 1:8 – This is very similar to the outfit John the Baptist was described to have worn. John the Baptist was considered the second Elijah.
  • 1:9-16 – The first two captains with soldiers the king sent were most likely intending to do Elijah harm, this is why he wants to have them killed. The third captain and soldiers come more peacefully- this begs the question of why the second captain was just as rude as the first one. If you know that the guy you’ve been sent to arrest can kill you with magic sky-fire anytime he wants, it’s kind of your own fault if you tick him off and he kills you with the aforementioned fire.
  • 2:8 – Very reminiscent of Moses parting the Red Sea.
  • 2:11-12 – Elijah is the second person in the Old Testament who doesn’t die. Enoch was the first who was simply taken to heaven. Fun fact: lots of people think this verse is evidence of extraterrestrial activity in the ancient Middle East. (Hint: it’s not.)
  • 2:23-25 – Most commentaries explain this as the boys having such disrespect, as did all their people, for the prophet Elisha or anything else representative of God. Elisha’s curse was also representative of the fate of the rest of the people in the city who rejected God. All in all, this is a strange and disturbing passage. This was also the very first Bible verse I memorized.
  • 3:9 – The kingdoms of Israel and Judah had not been united on anything since just after Solomon’s reign.
  • 3:13 – Elisha learned his sass from Elijah. The king of Israel’s parents worshipped Baal. Elisha is pointing out that the king wants the Lord’s help even though he hasn’t been faithful to the Lord.
  • 3:17-19 – It is often the simplest things that prove God’s favor or lack thereof. Like when wandering in the desert, the Israelites lack water and God provides it.

3:27 – The King of Moab who sacrificed his son did not do this to honor God. God did not ask this of him.

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