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2 Kings 10:15-25

Context

10:15 When he left there, he met 1  Jehonadab, son of Rekab, who had been looking for him. 2  Jehu greeted him and asked, 3  “Are you as committed to me as I am to you?” 4  Jehonadab answered, “I am!” Jehu replied, “If so, give me your hand.” 5  So he offered his hand and Jehu 6  pulled him up into the chariot. 10:16 Jehu 7  said, “Come with me and see how zealous I am for the Lord’s cause.” 8  So he 9  took him along in his chariot. 10:17 He went to Samaria and exterminated all the members of Ahab’s family who were still alive in Samaria, 10  just as the Lord had announced to Elijah. 11 

Jehu Executes the Prophets and Priests of Baal

10:18 Jehu assembled all the people and said to them, “Ahab worshiped 12  Baal a little; Jehu will worship 13  him with great devotion. 14  10:19 So now, bring to me all the prophets of Baal, as well as all his servants and priests. 15  None of them must be absent, for I am offering a great sacrifice to Baal. Any of them who fail to appear will lose their lives.” But Jehu was tricking them 16  so he could destroy the servants of Baal. 10:20 Then Jehu ordered, “Make arrangements for 17  a celebration for Baal.” So they announced it. 10:21 Jehu sent invitations throughout Israel, and all the servants of Baal came; not one was absent. They arrived at the temple of Baal and filled it up from end to end. 18  10:22 Jehu ordered the one who was in charge of the wardrobe, 19  “Bring out robes for all the servants of Baal.” So he brought out robes for them. 10:23 Then Jehu and Jehonadab son of Rekab went to the temple of Baal. Jehu 20  said to the servants of Baal, “Make sure there are no servants of the Lord here with you; there must be only servants of Baal.” 21  10:24 They went inside to offer sacrifices and burnt offerings. Now Jehu had stationed eighty men outside. He had told them, “If any of the men inside get away, you will pay with your lives!” 22 

10:25 When he finished offering the burnt sacrifice, Jehu ordered the royal guard 23  and officers, “Come in and strike them down! Don’t let any escape!” So the royal guard and officers struck them down with the sword and left their bodies lying there. 24  Then they entered the inner sanctuary of the temple of Baal. 25 

1 tn Heb “found.”

2 tn Heb “and he went from there and found Jehonadab son of Rekab [who was coming] to meet him.”

3 tn Heb “and he blessed him and said to him.”

4 tn Heb “Is there with your heart [what is] right, as my heart [is] with your heart?”

5 tc Heb “Jehonadab said, ‘There is and there is. Give your hand.’” If the text is allowed to stand, there are two possible ways to understand the syntax of וָיֵשׁ (vayesh), “and there is”: (1) The repetition of יֵשׁ (yesh, “there is and there is”) could be taken as emphatic, “indeed I am.” In this case, the entire statement could be taken as Jehonadab’s words or one could understand the words “give your hand” as Jehu’s. In the latter case the change in speakers is unmarked. (2) וָיֵשׁ begins Jehu’s response and has a conditional force, “if you are.” In this case, the transition in speakers is unmarked. However, it is possible that וַיֹּאמֶר (vayyomer), “and he said,” or וַיֹּאמֶר יֵהוּא (vayyomer yehu), “and Jehu said,” originally appeared between יֵשׁ and וָיֵשׁ and has accidentally dropped from the text by homoioarcton (note that both the proposed וַיֹּאמֶר and וָיֵשׁ begin with vav, ו). The present translation assumes such a textual reconstruction; it is supported by the LXX, Syriac Peshitta, and Vulgate.

6 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Jehu) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

7 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Jehu) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

8 tn Heb “and see my zeal for the Lord.”

9 tc The MT has a plural form, but this is most likely an error. The LXX, Syriac Peshitta, and Vulgate all have the singular.

10 tn Heb “and he struck down all the remaining ones to Ahab in Samaria until he destroyed him.”

11 tn Heb “according to the word of the Lord which he spoke to Elijah.”

12 tn Or “served.

13 tn Or “serve.”

14 tn Heb “much” or “greatly.”

15 tn Heb “and now, all the prophets of Baal, all his servants and all his priests summon to me.”

16 tn Heb “acted with deception [or, ‘trickery’].”

17 tn Heb “set apart”; or “observe as holy.”

18 tn Heb “and the house of Baal was filled mouth to mouth.”

19 tn Heb “and he said to the one who was over the wardrobe.”

20 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Jehu) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

21 tn Heb “Search carefully and observe so that there are not here with you any servants of the Lord, only the servants of Baal.”

22 tn Heb “The man who escapes from the men whom I am bringing into your hands, [it will be] his life in place of his life.”

23 tn Heb “runners.”

24 tn Heb “and they threw.” No object appears. According to M. Cogan and H. Tadmor (II Kings [AB], 116), this is an idiom for leaving a corpse unburied.

25 tn Heb “and they came to the city of the house of Baal.” It seems unlikely that a literal city is meant. Some emend עִיר (’ir), “city,” to דְּבִיר (dÿvir) “holy place,” or suggest that עִיר is due to dittography of the immediately preceding עַד (’ad) “to.” Perhaps עִיר is here a technical term meaning “fortress” or, more likely, “inner room.”



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