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Two Kings One

by Dr. Henry M. Morris

(taken from the Defender's Study Bible)

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2 Kings 1:1 Then Moab rebelled against Israel after the death of Ahab.

2 Kings 1:2 And Ahaziah fell down through a lattice in his upper chamber that was in Samaria, and was sick: and he sent messengers, and said unto them, Go, inquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron whether I shall recover of this disease.

Ahaziah. Ahaziah, the son of Ahab (1 Kings 22:40) should not be confused with the later king of Judah, the son of Jehoram (2 Kings 8:25)

2 Kings 1:3 But the angel of the LORD said to Elijah the Tishbite, Arise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria, and say unto them, Is it not because there is not a God in Israel, that ye go to inquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron?

not a God in Israel. King Ahaziah, son of Ahab and Jezebel, reigned only two years, following in the pagan idolatry of his parents. Although he certainly knew about the total defeat of the priests of Baal by Elijah at Carmel, as well as his father's death as predicted by the prophet Micaiah, he nevertheless chose to seek help from a heathen prophet instead of the God of Israel. The sin of modern Christendom is much greater even than this, as two thousand years of Christian witness are being everywhere rejected in deference to the evolutionism and occultism of the ancient pagan gods.

2 Kings 1:4 Now therefore thus saith the LORD, Thou shalt not come down from that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die. And Elijah departed.

2 Kings 1:5 And when the messengers turned back unto him, he said unto them, Why are ye now turned back?

2 Kings 1:6 And they said unto him, There came a man up to meet us, and said unto us, Go, turn again unto the king that sent you, and say unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Is it not because there is not a God in Israel, that thou sendest to inquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron? therefore thou shalt not come down from that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die.

Baal-zebub. The name of this “god” of the Philistine city, Ekron, means “lord of the flies.” What a poor substitute for the true God of creation!

2 Kings 1:7 And he said unto them, What manner of man was he which came up to meet you, and told you these words?

2 Kings 1:8 And they answered him, He was an hairy man, and girt with a girdle of leather about his loins. And he said, It is Elijah the Tishbite.

2 Kings 1:9 Then the king sent unto him a captain of fifty with his fifty. And he went up to him: and, behold, he sat on the top of an hill. And he spake unto him, Thou man of God, the king hath said, Come down.

2 Kings 1:10 And Elijah answered and said to the captain of fifty, If I be a man of God, then let fire come down from heaven, and consume thee and thy fifty. And there came down fire from heaven, and consumed him and his fifty.

and consumed him. This time of deep apostasy in Israel was marked by many remarkable miracles. The people of Israel had separated themselves from the true temple and priesthood, so they probably had little or no knowledge of the then-extant Scriptures. Accordingly God spoke by many great miracles confirming the testimony of Elijah and Elisha during this period, seeking to call His people back to Himself. Very few heeded, especially among their kings and leaders.

2 Kings 1:11 Again also he sent unto him another captain of fifty with his fifty. And he answered and said unto him, O man of God, thus hath the king said, Come down quickly.

2 Kings 1:12 And Elijah answered and said unto them, If I be a man of God, let fire come down from heaven, and consume thee and thy fifty. And the fire of God came down from heaven, and consumed him and his fifty.

2 Kings 1:13 And he sent again a captain of the third fifty with his fifty. And the third captain of fifty went up, and came and fell on his knees before Elijah, and besought him, and said unto him, O man of God, I pray thee, let my life, and the life of these fifty thy servants, be precious in thy sight.

2 Kings 1:14 Behold, there came fire down from heaven, and burnt up the two captains of the former fifties with their fifties: therefore let my life now be precious in thy sight.

fire down from heaven. The third captain recognized what the others had ignored—that the God of Elijah was the true God of heaven. This had been demonstrated ten years before on Mount Carmel also with fire from heaven, but self-centered pagan pantheists forget easily. Whether these heavenly fires were providentially directed lightning or specially created fires for the occasion, the deadly effect was the same.

2 Kings 1:15 And the angel of the LORD said unto Elijah, Go down with him: be not afraid of him. And he arose, and went down with him unto the king.

2 Kings 1:16 And he said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Forasmuch as thou hast sent messengers to inquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron, is it not because there is no God in Israel to inquire of his word? therefore thou shalt not come down off that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die.

2 Kings 1:17 So he died according to the word of the LORD which Elijah had spoken. And Jehoram reigned in his stead in the second year of Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat king of Judah; because he had no son.

Jehoram reigned. Note two Jehorams mentioned in this verse. The first is King of Israel, son of Ahab and brother of Azakiah (2 Kings 3:1). The second was co-regent of Judah with Jehoshaphat his father.

second year of Jehoram. Jehoram had apparently been installed as co-regent over Judah with Jehoshaphat his father just two years before another Jehoram, younger son of Israel's king Ahab, began his own reign. This was the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat's reign (2 Kings 3:1). It was fairly common during that period for kings to appoint sons as co-regents, in order to forestall later disputes that might develop when the reigning monarch died.

2 Kings 1:18 Now the rest of the acts of Ahaziah which he did, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel?