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The Messengers Return not.


Death of Jehoram.

peace? (18) So there went one on horse- |1 0r, marching. his chariot was made ready. And Joram back to meet him, and said, Thus saith

king of Israel and Ahaziah king of the king, Is it peace? And Jehu said,

Judah went out, each in his chariot, What hast thou to do with peace? turn

and they went out against Jehu, and thee behind me. And the watchman web in mad. *met him in the portion of Naboth the told, saying, The messenger came to

Jezreelite. them, but he cometh not again. (19) Then

(22) And it came to pass, when Joram he sent out a second on horseback, which

saw Jehu, that he said, Is it peace, came to them, and said, Thus saith the 3 Heb., Bind. Jehu? And he answered, What peace, king, Is it peace? And Jehu answered,

so long as the whoredoms of thy mother What hast thou to do with peace ? turn

Jezebel and her witchcrafts thee behind me. (20) And the watchman

many ? (23) And Joram turned his hands, told, saying, He came even unto them,

4 Heb., found and 'fled, and said to Ahaziah, There is and cometh not again : and the driving

treachery, 0 Ahaziah. (24) And Jehu is like the driving of Jehu the son of

5 drew a bow with his full strength, and Nimshi; for he driveth ? furiously.

smote Jehoram between his arms, and (21) And Joram said, 3 Make ready. And hand icith a bow. the arrow went out at his heart, and he



5 Heb., Nited his


(18) One on horseback.- Literally, the rider of (22) Is it peace, Jehu ? – Joram meant, " Is all the horse.

well at the seat of war?” Jehu's reply left no doubt What hast thou to do with peace ?-A rough of his intentions. He assumes the part of champion evasion : “What business is it of yours, on what ground of the legitimate worship against Jezebel and her I am come?” Conscious of his strength, Jehu can foreign innovations, and the lawless tyrannies by which despise the royal message, and the messenger durst she sought to enforce them. (Comp. verses 25, 26.) not disobey the fierce general, when ordered summarily

What peace

so many ?- Rather, to the rear. Of course Jehu wished to prevent an alarm What is the peace during the whoredoms of thy mother, being raised in Jezreel.

and her many witchcraftsi.e., so long as they conCame to them.-Literally, came right up to them. tinue ? (The Hebrew text should be corrected from verse 20.) Whoredoms.- In the spiritual sense, i.e., idolatries.

(19) Then.-Literally, And he sent a second rider (See Note on 1 Chron. v. 25.) of a horse.

Witchcrafts.-Sorcerics; the use of spells and Is it peace ?-So the versions, many editions, and charms, common among Semitic idolaters. (Comp. the some MSS. The ordinary Hebrew text gives it as a prohibitions in the Law (Exod. xxii. 18; Deut. xviii. 10, salutation : "Peace !” but wrongly. Joram is still un. 11.) A great number of the Assyrian tablets contain suspicious of evil. Some accident might have detained magical formulas, incantations, and exorcisms. Baby. his first messenger.

lonia was the home of the pseudo-science of magic; (20) Driving.---Correct. The margin is wrong.

and the oldest collection of such formulas is that of The son of Nimshi.-Jehu was son of Jehoshaphat Sargina king of Agadê (Accad), compiled in seventy son of Nimshi. The former phrase may have fallen tablets, about 2200 B.C. out of the text here. (Yet comp. chap. viii. 26, “Atha- (23) And Joram turned his hands - i.e., liah daughter of Omri.”) The Syriac and Arabic call turned the horses round. (Comp. 1 Kings xxii. 34.) Jehu “the son of Nimshi” in verse 2 also.

There is treachery.- Literally, Guile, or fraud, He driveth furiously-i.e., the foremost cha- Ahaziah ! Joram shouted these two words of warning rioteer so drives. The word rendered “ furiously” is to his companion as he was turning his horses to fly. related to that rendered mad fellow" in verse 11. (24) And Jehu drew ... strength. See mar(Comp. margin here.) Jehu's chariot swayed unsteadily gin, which, however, is not quite accurate. Rather it as he drove madly on. LXX., év napalayai. The should be, And Jehu had filled his hand (with an Targum explains in an exactly opposite sense, "quietly;" arrow) on the bow-i.e., had meanwhile put an arrow on and so Josephus : “Jehu was driving rather slowly, and his bow ready to shoot. Keil explains, “ filled his hand in orderly fashion” (perhaps confounding shiggā‘ôn, with the bow,” i.e., seized the bow. The phrase “ to “madness,” Dent. xxviii. 28, with shiggāyôn, "a slow, fill a bow ” means to stretch it, both in Hebrew (Zech. mournful song,” or elegy).

ix. 13) and in Syriac (Ps. xi. 2). In Ps. lxiv. 4. Symma(21) Make ready.-Literally, bindi.e., the horses chus renders the Hebrew,“ they have aimed their arrow," to the chariot.

by the Greek, érhpwoay To Tócov, " they have filled the And his chariot was made ready.-Literally, bow." And one bound his chariot.

Between his arms—i.e., between the shoulders, as Against Jehu.- Rather, to meet Jehu. Joram he was flying ; Vulg., " inter scapulas.” was curious to know why his messengers had not re- The arrow went out at his heart.-Or, came turned, as well as why the commander-in-chief had left out from his heart. It struck him obliquely between the seat of war. Had he suspected treachery, he would the shoulders, and went right through the heart. (The hardly have left the shelter of the walls of Jezreel, and word for "arrow" is heçî, an ancient form, occurring ventured forth without a guard.

thrice in 1 Sam. xx. 36–38.) Ewald, on this account, In the portion of Naboth.–Naboth's vineyard, refers both passages to the oldest narrator of the hiswhich now formed part of the pleasure-grounds of the tory of the kings. palace. (See 1 Kings xxi. 16.)

Sunk down.-See margin (Isa. xlvi. 1).


Joram cast into Naboth's Field.


Death of Ahaziah

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a 1 Kings 21. 29.

Igunk down in his chariot. (25) Then |1 Heb., bowed.
said Jehu to Bidkar his captain, Take
up, and cast him in the portion of the
field of Naboth the Jezreelite: for re-
member how that, when I and thou rode
together after Ahab his father, the
Lord laid this burden upon him ;
(26) surely I have seen yesterday the
2 blood of Naboth, and the blood of his
sons, saith the LORD; and I will requite
thee in this plat, saith the Lord. Now
therefore take and cast him into the 3 Or, portion.

plat of ground, according to the word
of the LORD.

(27) But when Ahaziah the king of
Judah saw this, he fled by the way of
the garden house. 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.
And he fled to Megiddo, and died there.
(28) And his servants carried him in a
chariot to Jerusalem, and buried him in
his sepulchre with his fathers in the

2 Heb., bloods.

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In his chariot.-LXX., “on his knees,” owing prophetic terminology, together establish the historical to a partial obliteration of one letter in their Hebrew authenticity of the short oracle of Elijah, recorded in text.

this verse.

Its brevity and the solemnity with which (25) Then said Jehu.-Literally, And he said. it was pronounced would, we may be sure, stamp it in.

Bidkar.-The Syriac gives Bar-děkar, “son of effaceably upon the memory of those who heard it.
stabbing," i.e., “stabber," "slayer,” a very suitable (Comp. I Sam. ii. 30; and chap. xix. 33, infra.)
name for Jehu's squire. The Hebrew name is, there. I will requite thee in this plat.-Another im-
fore, a contraction of Ben-dekar. (Comp. Bedan, portant detail not given in the former account.
son of Dan,” i.e, Danite, 1 Sam. xii. 11; and Bedad, Plat.-Portion, as in verse 25 (twice).
of Hadad," in 1 Chron. i. 46.)

(27) But when saw this.-Now Ahaziah ...
Captain. - Adjutant, aide-de-camp, chief (chap. had seen it; and he fled, &c.
vii. 2).

By the way of the garden house-i.e., in the Remember how that, when I and thou rode direction of the garden house, which was probably a together.—This gives the sense of the Hebrew cor- sort of arbour or drinking pavilion near the gates of rectly. Literally, remember thou me and thee riding the palace gardens, of which Naboth's vineyard formed together. The word rendered “together” probably a part. Ahaziah wished to escape from the royal park means riding side by side on horseback in attendance as fast as he could. on the king. The Targum, Vulg., and Kimchi inter- Smite him also in the chariot.- The Hebrew pret, riding together in the same chariot; Josephus, is much more suited to the excitement of the occasion : riding together in Ahab's chariot behind him.

Him too! shoot him in the chariot! (Here and in The Lord laid this burden upon him.--Rather, verse 13, supra, 'el, “ into," seems equivalent to ‘al, Jehovah uttered this (prophetic) utterance upon (i.e., about) him. (Comp. the oracle uttered by Elijah And they did so. Some such words as these may against Ahab when taking possession of Naboth's have fallen out of the Hebrew text. So the Syriac: vineyard, 1 Kings xxi. 17, 29.)

“ Him also ! slay him! and they slew him in his chariot, (26) Surely.--Literally, if not; a formula of em- on the ascent of Gur,” &c. But the rendering of the phatic asseveration, which originally must have run LXX. involves the least change, and is probably right: somewhat as follows: “If I have not seen, may I “Him too! And he smote him in the chariot, in the perish.” The inappropriateness of such an expression going up,” &c. This is more graphic. Jehu simply in the mouth of the Deity is obvious ; but that only ejaculates, “ Him too!” and, after a hot pursuit, shoots shows how completely the original meaning of the for- his second victim, at the ascent or declivity of Gur, mula was forgotten in everyday usage.

where Ahaziah's chariot would be forced to slacken Yesterday.-So that Ahab seized the vineyard the speed. day after the murder of Naboth, a detail not exactly The ascent of Gur is not mentioned elsewhere. specified in 1 Kings xxi. 16.

Ibleam lay between Jezreel and Megiddo. (Comp. Judg. The blood.-The plural (margin) implies death by i. 27; Josh. xvii. 11.) violence (Gen. iv. 10).

And he fled to Megiddo, and died there.And the blood of his sons.- The murder of See the Note on 2 Chron. xxii. 9, where a different tra. the sons of Naboth is neither stated nor implied in 1 dition respecting the end of Ahaziah is recorded. The Kings xxi., an omission which has needlessly troubled definite assignment of localities in the present account the minds of commentators. As to the fact, it would is a mark of greater trustworthiness. The way in be quite in accordance with ancient practice to slay the which Rashi, whom Keil follows, attempts to combine sons of one accused of blasphemy along with their the two accounts, is revolting to common sense. It father (comp. Josh. vii. 24, 25); and the crafty Jezebel would be better to assume a corruption of the text in would not be likely to spare persons whose wrongs one or the other narrative. might one day prove dangerous. The difference in the Megiddo.-Identified in the cuneiform inscriptions two narratives is accounted for by the circumstance as Magidů or Magadů. that the present is the exact version of an eye-witness, (28) Carried him in a chariot. Literally, made viz., Jehu himself, while the former was probably de- him ride. After this verb the LXX., Syriac, and rived from a less direct source.

Vulg. supply what the Hebrew text almost demands, Saith the Lord. - Literally, is the thing uttered "and brought him.” of Jehovah. This phrase, which is uncommon except In his sepulchre. – In his own sepulchre, in the writings of the prophets, and the word rendered which he had in his lifetime prepared, according to the “ burden” in the last verse, which also belongs to custom of antiquity.

Jezebel Killed,


and Eaten by Dogs.

B.O. cir. 846.

B.C. cir. 24.

city of David.
(29) And in the eleventh

Throw her down. So they threw her year of Joram the son of Ahab began

down: and some of her blood was Ahaziah to reign over Judah.

sprinkled on the wall, and on the (30) And when Jehu was come to Jez

horses: and he trode her under foot. reel, Jezebel heard of it; and she

(31) And when he was come in, he did painted her face, and tired her head,

eat and drink, and said, Go, see now and looked out at a window. (31) And

this cursed woman, and bury her: for as Jehu entered in at the gate, she said, "He became onger eyes she is a king's daughter. (35) And they Had Zimri peace, who slew his master ?

went to bury her: but they found no (32) And he lifted up his face to the

more of her than the skull, and the feet, window, and said, Who is on my side?

and the palms of her hands. (36) Wherewho ? And there looked out to him two

fore they came again, and told him. or three % eunuchs. (33) And he said,

And he said, This is the word of the

2 Or, chamberlains.

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(29) In the eleventh year of Joram.- Chap. the rebel ? ” referring to the same phrase in verses 17, 18, viii. 25 says “ in the twelfth year of Joram.” Such a 19, 22, supra. The phrase is vague enough to admit of difference is not remarkable, inasmuch as the synchro- many meanings, according to circumstances. Perhaps nisms between the reigns of the two kingdoms are Jezebel, in her mood of desperate defiance, repeats the not based upon exact records. Moreover, different question which Jehoram had thrice asked of Jehu, as a computations might make the same year the eleventh or hint that she herself is now the sovereign to whom twelfth of Joram. (The verse is a parenthesis, and Jehu owes an account of his doings. She goes on to perhaps spurious.)

call him a second Zimrii.e., a regicide like him who (30) And when Jehu was come.-Rather, And slew Baasha, and likely to enjoy as brief a reign as he. Jehu camei.e., after the slaughter of Ahaziah, as the (See 1 Kings xvi. 15–18.) Hebrew construction implies.

(32) Who is on my side ? who ? - This hardly Jezebel heard of it.-Rather, Now Jezebel had implies, as Thenius thinks, that Jezebel had made heard-scil., the news of the death of the two kings. preparations for resistance.

Jehu kuew that the There should be a stop after Jezreel.

imperious and cruel queen was well hated by the And she painted her face.-Rather, and she set palace officials. The two or three eunuchs,” who a her eyes in painti.e., according to the still common moment before had crouched in servile dread before practice of Oriental ladies, she painted her eyebrows Jezebel, would now be eager to curry favour with the and lashes with a pigment composed of antimony and regicide, and, at the same time, wreak their malice upon zinc (the Arabic kohl). The dark border throws the their former tyrant. (The repetition,“ Who is on my eye into relief, and makes it appear larger (Bühr). side? who ?accords well with Jehu's character. The Pliny relates that in his day this pigment (stibium) LXX. has the strange reading," he saw her, and said, was called platyophthalmon (comp. Jer. iv. 30), because Who art thou ! Come down with me.” Josephus it dilates the eye (Plin. Hist. Nat. xxxiii. 34).

adopts this; but Thenius shows clearly that it has origiTired.-An old English word, meaning adorned with nated in easy corruptions of the present Hebrew text.) a tire or head-dress. (Comp. Isa. iii. 18.). Tire might (33) Throw her down.-Comp. Note on 1 Chron. seem to be the Persian tiara, but is much more prob- xiii. 9. ably connected with the German zier and zieren. (See Was sprinkled on.-Spirted on to. Skeat's Etym. Dict., 8.v.) Jezebel put on her royal He trode her under foot.-All the versions have apparel in order to die as a queen. Comp. the similar theyi.e., the horses-trode. Thenius supposes they were behaviour of Cleopatra :

excited by the blood being sprinkled upon them. But "Show me, my women, like a queen. Go fetch

he- i.e., Jehu — "trode her under foot,” plainly My best attires. I am again for Cydnus,

means, he drove over her fallen body. Ewald goes To meet Marc Antony ... Bring our crown, and all.

beyond the text in stating that Jehu spurned her with Give me my robe, put on my crown; I have

his own feet. (For the verb, comp. chap. vii. 20.) Immortal longings in me.'

(34) And when ... drink. -Rather, And he went Antony and Cleop., act v., scene 2.

in (into the palace), and ate and drank. Jehu takes A window.-The window, looking down upon


possession of the palace, having slain its former occusquare within the city gate. Others think of a window pants. Savage warrior as he was, he forgot all about looking down into the courtyard of the palace.

the victim of his violence until he had appeased the Ewald's notion (after Ephrem Syrus), that Jezebel demands of his appetite. Then he could remember that thought to captivate the conqueror by her charms, is even Jezebel was of royal rank, and perhaps a touch negatived by the consideration that she was the grand- of remorse may be discerned in the mandate for her mother of Ahaziah, who was twenty-two years old burial. when Jehu slew him, and the fact that Oriental women Go, see now.-Rather, Look, I pray, after. fade early.

This cursed woman.-Jehu was thinking of the (31) And as

she said.- And Jehu had curse pronounced on Jezebel by the prophet Elijah. come into the gate, and she said.

(See next verse.) Had Zimri master ?- Rather, Art well She is a king's daughter, - Compare 1 Kings (literally, Is it peace), thou Zimri, his master's mur- xvi. 31. derer ? The "Is it peace ?” which Jezebel addresses to (35) Her hands.-Heb., the hands. Jehu, appears to be an ironical greeting. Thenius ex- (36) This is the word of the Lord.-See 1 Kings plains: “Is there to be peace or war between me and thee, xxi. 23, where this oracle of Elijah is given.


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Jehu's Letter


to the Rulers of Jezreel.

1 Kings 21. 23.

LORD, which he spake l by his servant

master's sons are with you, and there are Elijah the Tishbite, saying, “In the

with you chariots and horses, a fenced portion of Jezreel shall dogs eat the ucb., Dy thonan city also, and armour; (3) look even out flesh of Jezebel : (37) and the carcase of

the best and meetest of your master's Jezebel shall be as dung upon the face

sons, and set him on his father's throne, of the field in the portion of Jezreel;

and fight for your master's house. (4) But so that they shall not say, This is

they were exceedingly afraid, and said, Jezebel.

Behold, two kings stood not before him :

how then shall we stand? (5) And he CHAPTER X.- (1) And Ahab had

that was over the house, and he that seventy sons in Samaria. And Jehu

was over the city, the elders also, and wrote letters, and sent to Samaria, unto

the bringers up of the children, sent to the rulers of Jezreel, to the elders, and

Jehu, saying, We are thy servants, and to them that brought up Ahab's

will do all that thou shalt bid us; we children, saying, (2) Now as soon as th

will not make any king: do thou that letter cometh to you, seeing your

which is good in thine eyes.

B.C. 884.

2 Heb., nourishers.


Portion-i.e., domain, territory (heleq). In 1 Kings charge would be responsible for the good behaviour of xxi. 23, the word is “wall” (hel), an error due to the their wards. Ahab may have dreaded the evils of an loss of the final letter; not an original difference, as education in the harem, and possible disputes about the Keil assumes.

succession. Dogs.-The dogs.

(2) Now as soon as this letter cometh. (37) And the carcase of Jezebel. This continua. Rather, And now when this letter cometh. Only the tion of the prophecy is not given in 1 Kings xxi. 23. conclusion of the letter, containing the gist of it, is reIt is probably original; not "a free expansion ” by ported here. (Comp. chap. v. 6.) Jehu, as Keil asserts.

Seeing your master's sons ... look even Shall be. It is questionable whether the Hebrew out (verse 3).-Rather, there are with you both your text is to be read as a rare ancient form (w'hāyāth), or master's sons, and the chariots and the horses, and a simply as an instance of defective writing (whāyetha). fenced city, and the armoury: so look out the best, &c. We prefer the second view.

A fenced city.-All the versions but the Arabic As dung.--Comp. Ps. Ixxxiii. 10.

have“ fenced cities;”and so Josephus. There is a tone So that they shall not say.--Comp. Gen. xi. 7 of mocking irony in Jehu's challenge to the nobles of for the construction. The sense is, So that men will no Samaria, who were probably as luxurious and cowardly longer be able to recognise her mangled remains. now as in the days of Amos, a few years later (Amos

iii. 12, vi. 3–6). (Comp. also Isa. xxviii. 1–10.) Ву X.

his careful enumeration of their resources, he as good

as says that his defiance is not the fruit of ignorance. JEHU MASSACRES THE FAMILY OF AHAB, THE

(3) The best and meetest-i.e., the one you think KINSMEN OF AHAZIAH, AND THE BAAL-WOR

best qualified in every sense (not merely in the moral

sense). (1) Ahab had seventy sons.--His posterity in Your master's sons.-"Your master” need not general are meant. Ahab had been dead about fourteen mean Jehoram. The story relates to Ahab (verse 1). years (chap. iii. 1; 1 Kings xxii. 51), and had had two His father's throne-i.e., Ahab's throne. (Comp. successors on the throne. The name Ahab seems to be 2 Chron. xvii. 3, xxi. 12, xxix. 2, where David is called used here as equivalent to the house of Ahab. Many of the father of Jehoshaphat, Jehoram, and Hezekiah the number might be strictly sons of Ahab, as he no in turn.) doubt had a considerable harem.

Fight for your master's house. Jehu thus Jehu wrote letters, and sent to Samaria.- declares his own warlike intentions, leaving the nobles, Jehu was crafty as well as fierce. He could not venture whom his prompt and decisive action had taken by to the capital without first sounding the inclinations of surprise, no choice between improvised resistance and the nobles of the city.

instant submission. Knowing Jehu's character as a Unto the rulers of Jezreel.—“Jezreel” is an soldier, they chose the latter. ancient error. The LXX. has “ unto the rulers of (+) But they were exceedingly afraid.-Lite. Samaria.” So Josephus. Thenius accordingly suggests rally, And they feared mightily, mightily. (Comp. Gen. that the original reading was,

“and sent from Jezreel vii. 19.) to the princes of Samaria.” The Vulg. gives" ad opti. Two kings.-Rather, the two kings. The word mates civitatis,” which seems preferable. Before“

the kings is emphatic. elders” we must restore “and unto ” with some MSS., (5) He that was over the house. The prefect the LXX., Syriac, and Vulg. The original text would of the palace, or_major-domo. A similar official is then run :

"and sent to the princes of the city mentioned on the Egyptian monuments. His position and unto the elders,” &c. Reuss, on the other hand, and influence would resemble that of the great chamberreads “ Israel ” for “Jezreel.”

lain of the Byzantine court. Them that brought up Ahab's children.- He that was over the city. -- The prefect or Literally, them who brought up Ahab (i.e., the house of governor of the city, called in 1 Kings xxii. 26

the Ahab). The word occurs in Num. xi. 12; Isa. Ixix. 23 prince (sar) of the city.” These two are the “rulers" ("nursing father”). The nobles entrusted with this (sārîm) of verse 1.

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Slaying of


Ahab's Sons.

(6) Then he wrote a letter the second

sons. And he said, Lay ye them in time to them, saying, If ye be ? mine, and

two heaps at the entering in of the gate if ye will hearken unto my voice, take ye

until the morning. (9) And it came to the heads of the men your master's sons, 1 Heh., for me. pass in the morning, that he went out, and come to me to Jezreel by to morrow

and stood, and said to all the people, Ye this time. Now the king's sons, being

be righteous: behold, I conspired against seventy persons, were with the great

my master, and slew him: but who slew men of the city, which brought them a 1 Kings 21. 29. all these? (10) Know now that there up. (7) And it came to pass, when the

shall fall unto the earth nothing of the letter came to them, that they took the

word of the LORD, which the LORD king's sons, and slew seventy persons,

spake concerning the house of Ahab : and put their heads in baskets, and sent 2 the hand for the Lord hath done that which he him them to Jezreel. (8) And there came

spake a 2 by his servant Elijah. a messenger, and told him, saying, They

(11) So Jehu slew all that remained of have brought the heads of the king's

the house of Ahab in Jezreel, and all



(6) The second time. Some MSS., the LXX., Heaps.-The noun (çibbûr) occurs nowhere else in and the Arabic read “ a second letter.”

the Old Testament. In the Talmud it means congre. Take ye the heads. -Jehu knew his men. The gation,” as we say colloquially "a heap of persons." cool cynicism of his savage order is worthy of a Sulla The verb (çabar) means "to heap up." (See Exod. or a Marius.

viii. 10.) The heads of the men your master's sons. At the entering in of the gate.- The place of -Literally, the heads of the men of the sons of your public business, where all the citizens would see them. master. Some MSS., the Syriae, Arabic, and Vulg., as (Comp. chap. vii. 3; 1 Kings xxii. 10.) But perhaps well as the MSS. mentioned by Origen, omit the word not the city gate, but the gate of the palace is to be men. Thenius thinks that this word is used to indicate understood. Parallels to this deed of Jehu are not that only male descendants of Ahab were to be put to wanting in the history of modern Persia. (Comp. death (?). The Alexandrian LXX. omits sons; and four 1 Sam. xvii. 54; 2 Macc. xv. 30; and the comparatively Hebrew MSS. read instead house. The Authorised recent custom in our own country of fixing up the heads Version, however, is a permissible interpretation of the of traitors on London Bridge.) Hebrew.

(9) And stood.-Or, took his placei.e. (according Come.-LXX., bring (them), which is a natural to Reuss), sat as judge in the palace gateway, according conjecture.

to royal custom, and gave audience to the people. To Jezreel.-A journey of more than twenty miles. The citizens would naturally be struck with conster

By to morrow this time.-Jehu is urgent for nation at the sight of the two ghastly pyramids in front despatch, because time is all-important. He wishes to of the palace, and would crowd together in expectancy convince the people of Jezreel as soon as possible that at the gates. Jehu goes forth to justify himself, and none of the royal princes were left to claim the calm their fears. crown, and that the nobles of Samaria have joined his Ye be righteous-i.e., guiltless in respect of the

deaths of these men, and therefore have nothing to Now the king's sons ... brought them up. dread. Thenius explains : “Ye are just, and therefore - This is a correct translation. According to the Ma- will judge justly.” Others render : “Are ye righteous ?" soretic punctuation, and supposing that the particle implying that Jehu wished to make the people guilty 'eth (rendered" with ") might here be used merely to of the massacre of the princes, while owning his own introduce the subject, we might render : "Now the murder of the king. king's sons were seventy persons; the great men of the I.--Emphatic: I on my part; or, I indeed. . city were bringing them up.” But such a usage of 'eth But who slew all these ?--Slew should be smote. is very doubtful. (Comp. chap. vi. 5.) The sentence, Jehu professes astonishment, by way of self-exculpation. in any case, is only a parenthetic reminder of what was He hints that as Jehovah had foretold the destruction stated in verse 1. The total seventy is, perhaps, not of the house of Ahab, He must have brought it to pass ; to be taken as exact, seventy being a favourite round and therefore nobody is to blame. (See next verse.) number. (See Note on 1 Chron. i. 42.)

(10) Fall unto the earth.-As a dead thing; man, (7) And slew.-Rather, butchered, or slaughtered. bird, or beast. (Comp. Matt. x. 29.) The way in which the writer speaks of this massacre-- Nothing of the word of the Lord.--No part “they took the king's sons, and butchered seventy of Elijah's prediction shall fail of accomplishment. persons”-shows that he did not sympathise with For the Lord hath done.-Rather, and Jehovah, Jehu's deeds of blood. His interest rather centres in He hath done; or, and Jehovah it is who hath done. the fact that the predictions of Elijah were fulfilled by (11) So.-Rather, And The verse relates further the wickedness of Jehu. (See verse 10.)

In baskets.-Rather, in the baskets. The word In Jezreel.-The seat of the court. (důd) means a "pot” elsewhere (1 Sam. ii. 14). In His great men-i.e., high officials of his conrt; Ps. lxxxi. 6, the LXX. renders kópivos ; here it gives persons who owed their exaltation to him. káptallo. (“pointed baskets ”).

Kinsfolks.-Rather, his friends (literally, his known (8) There came a messenger.-Literally, and the ones ; "familiares ejus”). messenger came in. Josephus says Jehu was giving a Priests.-See Notes on 2 Sam. viii. 18; 1 Kings iv. banquet.

| 5; 1 Chron. xviii. 17.


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