2 KINGS CHAPTER 9.

Jehu Becomes King of Israel.

THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF JEHUíS ELEVATION. ó V. 1. And Elisha, the prophet, called one of the children of the prophets, a disciple at one of the prophet schools, and said unto him, Gird up thy loins, in preparing for a speedy journey afoot, and take this box, a small receptacle like a jug, of oil in thine hand, and go to Ramoth-gilead, in the country east of Jordan: v. 2. and when thou comest thither, look out there, pick out by looking him up, Jehu, the son of Jehoshaphat, the son of Nimshi, and go in, that is, into his house or tent, and make him arise up from among his brethren, his companions in arms, and carry him to an inner chamber, causing him to go to a place where they would be undisturbed. V. 3. Then take the box of oil and pour it on his head, its contents being the usual anointing oil, and say, Thus saith the Lord, I have anointed thee king over Israel. Cp. 1 Kings 19, 16. Then open the door, and flee, and tarry not, in order to avoid all discussion of the matter. V. 4. So the young man, even the young man the prophet, went to Ramoth-gilead. V. 5. And when he came, behold, the captains of the host were sitting, apparently in a council of war; and he said, I have an errand to thee, O captain, Jehu being an officer of the army. And Jehu said, Unto which of all us? And he said, To thee, O captain, thus singling him out for this special message. V. 6. And he arose and went into the house, as had been determined upon before by the Lord; and he, the disciple of the prophet, poured the oil on his head and said unto him, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, I have anointed thee king over the people of the Lord, even over Israel. V. 7. And thou shalt smite the house of Ahab, thy master, in all his relatives and descendants then living, that I may avenge the blood of My servants, the prophets, and the blood of all the servants of the Lord, at the hand of Jezebel, who had made it her purpose and object to eradicate the true worship of Jehovah. Cp. 1 Kings 18, 4; 19, 10. V. 8. For the whole house of Ahab shall perish; and I will cut off from Ahab him that pisseth against the wall, and him that is shut up and left in Israel, from the young and immature to the very old, down to the very last man; v. 9. and I will make the house of Ahab like the house of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, 1 Kings 14, 10, and like the house of Baasha, the son of Ahijah, 1 Kings 16, 3. 11. V. 10. And the dogs shall eat Jezebel in the portion of Jezreel; and there shall be none to bury her, to give her an honorable interment. And he opened the door and fled, lest he be involved in questions with which he was not competent to deal and regarding whose solution he had no authority. Strict obedience to the Word of God is the prime requisite in a Christian.

DEATH OF JORAM. ó V. 11. Then Jehu came forth, out of the inner chamber, to the servants of his lord, his fellow-councilors and companions in arms; and one said unto him, Is all well? They all were anxious to know whether it was a favorable message which he had received. Wherefore came this mad fellow to thee? The young prophet had been wild and unusual in his behavior, a fact which naturally did not escape their observation. And he said unto them, Ye know the man and his communication. He wanted to sound them out whether they had already received notice of the information which he had received and his promised elevation to the position of king. V. 12. And they said, It is false; tell us now. They denied the charge, but on their part demanded the truth. He could not escape them so easily. And he, unable to help himself against their importunities, said, Thus and thus spake he to me, saying, Thus saith the Lord, I have anointed thee king over Israel. V. 13. Then they hasted, and took every man his garment, the upper garment, which was really only a large square piece of cloth, and put it under him on the top of the stairs, namely, those of the house in which their meeting had been held, thus improvising a throne and stairway and giving him homage, and blew with trumpets, saying, Jehu is king! Thus the garments of the generals served both as a pathway and as a carpet from the place where Jehu was standing when he made his announcement to the head of the stairway. V. 14. So Jehu, the son of Jehoshaphat, the son of Nimshi, conspired against Joram, for by permitting himself to be proclaimed as king he rebelled against the authority of the reigning monarch. (Now Joram had kept Ramoth-gilead, he and all Israel, because of Hazael, king of Syria, who had again made an attempt to gain control of the city. V. 15. But King Joram, just at the time when this incident occurred, was returned to be healed in Jezreel of the wounds which the Syrians had given him, when he fought with Hazael, king of Syria, chap. 8, 29.) And Jehu said, If it be your minds, if they agreed with him, if they were sincere in their rebellion against King Joram, then let none go forth nor escape out of the city to go to tell it in Jezreel, to make known the fact that Jehu had been proclaimed king and thus to warn Joram. V. 16. So Jehu rode in a chariot and went to Jezreel; for Joram lay there, practically recovered from his wounds, but still unable or unwilling to return to the army. And Ahaziah. king of Judah, was come down to see Joram, chap. 8, 29. V. 17. And there stood a watchman on the tower in Jezreel, and he, faithful in the performance of his duty while the kings were enjoying their visit in the palace, spied the company of Jehu as he came and said, making a report at once as his work required, I see a company. And Joram said, Take an horseman, and send to meet them, and let him say, Is it peace? The question referred to the condition of affairs in camp, whether his coming had the purpose of announcing a new attack by the Syrians. V. 18. So there went one on horseback to meet him and said, Thus saith the king, Is it peace? And Jehu, energetic and resourceful as he was, said, What hast thou to do with peace? He should not worry about it, should not make it his business. Turn thee behind me; for by joining his little band he would be prevented from bringing any alarming report to the king. And the watchman, observing the actions of Jehu and the messenger from his post, told, saying, The messenger came to them, but he cometh not again. V. 19. Then he sent out a second on horseback, which came to them, Jehu and his men, and said, Thus saith the king, Is it peace? And Jehu, with the same energy and intention as before, answered, What hast thou to do with peace? Turn thee behind me. V. 20. And the watchman, again observing the strange behavior of the messenger, told, saying, He came even unto them and cometh not again; and the driving, the advancing of the small band with the chariot of Jehu in the lead, is like the driving of Jehu, the son of Nimshi; for he driveth furiously, with the fierce recklessness which characterized him. V. 21. And Joram said, Make ready, equivalent to our : Put on the harness, hitch up! And his chariot was made ready. And Joram, king of Israel, and Ahaziah, king of Judah, went out, each in his chariot, and they went out against Jehu, that is, to meet him as quickly as possible, for they had now grown apprehensive, and met him in the portion of Naboth the Jezreelite, which was now a part of the royal park. V. 22. And it came to pass, when Joram saw Jehu, that he said, Is it peace, Jehu? He was anxious to know the state of affairs, still believing that Jehuís strange behavior concerned the campaign against the Syrians. And he, boldly laying bare his hostility to the king, answered, What peace so long as the whoredoms of thy mother Jezebel and her witchcrafts are so many? Most of the guilt really fell upon her, for she had introduced idolatry in its worst forms, which also included the practice of immoral customs and other heathen rites and ceremonies. V. 23. And Joram turned his hands and fled, he tried to get away with all speed, for he suddenly realized the seriousness of the situation, and said to Ahaziah, There is treachery, O Ahaziah! They had been deceived, betrayed, they had fallen a prey to treason. V. 24. And Jehu, as the king turned to flee, drew a bow with his full strength and smote Jehoram between his arms, between the shoulder-blades, and the arrow went out at his heart, and he sunk down in his chariot. V. 25. Then said Jehu to Bidkar, his captain, Take up and cast him in the portion of the field of Naboth the Jezreelite, the part of the royal park which had formerly been his vineyard; for remember how that, when I and thou rode together after Ahab, his father, the Lord laid this burden upon him, 1 Kings 21, 29. V. 26. Surely, that was the Lordís oath, I have seen yesterday the blood of Naboth and the blood of his sons, saith the Lord, for the sons had evidently also been put to death at the time when Naboth was executed; and I will requite thee in this plat, saith the Lord, the punishment would strike the house of Ahab on this very piece of ground. Now, therefore, take and cast him into the plat of ground, according to the word of the Lord. Cp. 1 Kings 21, 19. Thus the sin of Ahab was visited upon his son Joram, who followed his father in his wickedness, just as God today visits the sins of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate Him.

DEATH OF AHAZIAH AND JEZEBEL. ó V. 27. But when Ahaziah, the king of Judah, saw this, he fled by the way of the garden house, some structure in or near the palace grounds. And Jehu followed after him and said, Smite him also in the chariot. And they did so at the going up to Gur, which is by Ibleam, some miles to the west. And he fled to Megiddo and died there, on the slope of Mount Carmel. It seems, from 2 Chron. 22, 9, that Ahaziah had first succeeded in reaching Samaria, but, having been found by Jehuís men, tried to escape to the northwest, where he was killed, as here related. He who sides with the enemies of God must expect to share the lot of such enemies. V. 28. And his servants carried him in a chariot to Jerusalem, and buried him in his sepulcher with his fathers in the city of David. V. 29. And in the eleventh year of Joram, the son of Ahab, began Ahaziah to reign over Judah, the difference between this statement and that of chap. 8, 25, being due to a difference in reckoning the first year of the reign of Joram. V. 30. And when Jehu was come to Jezreel, Jezebel heard of it; and she painted her face, applying a special preparation to her eyebrows and eyelids, and tired her head, by putting on the head-band and crown which held her elaborate head-dress in place, and looked out at a window, arrogant, self-willed, and defiant to the last, hoping that the majesty of her position would save her. V. 31. And as Jehu entered in at the gate, she said, Had Zimri peace, who slew his master? 1 Kings 16, 9-20, literally, ďIs it peace, thou Zimri, murderer of his lord?Ē She wanted to terrify the rebel by reminding him of the tragic end of Zimri, whose rule lasted only seven days. V. 32. And he lifted up his face to the window and said, Who is on my side, who? And there looked out to him, in answer to his call, two or three eunuchs, two servants of the palace at one window and three at another, signifying their intention to do his bidding. V. 33. And he said, Throw her down. So they threw her down, dashing her from the window to the pavement below; and some of her blood was sprinkled on the wall and on the horses; and he trode her under foot, causing the wheels of his chariot to pass over her and to extinguish the last spark of life. V. 34. And when he was come in, he did eat and drink, he first refreshed himself after his hard trip, and said, Go, see now this cursed woman and bury her; for she is a kingís daughter, a Phenician princess, I Kings 16, 31. V. 35. And they went to bury her; but they found no more of her than the skull and the feet and the palms of her hands, the rest having been eaten or dragged away by the savage dogs common in the Orient. V. 36. Wherefore they came again and told him. And he, who had not intended to refuse her burial or deliberately to fulfill the prediction in regard to her, said, This Is the word of the Lord which He spake by His servant Elijah the Tishbite, saying, In the portion of Jezreel shall dogs eat the flesh of Jezebel, 1 Kings 21, 23; v. 37. and the carcass of Jezebel shall be as dung upon the face of the field in the portion of Jezreel, so that they shall not say, This is Jezebel; there was no definite spot to keep her memory alive. Thus are the wicked punished who have seduced others to sin and worked harm to their souls.