2:19 The men of the city said to Elisha, “Look, the city has a good location, as our 1 master can see. But the water is bad and the land doesn’t produce crops.” 2 2:20 Elisha 3 said, “Get me a new jar and put some salt in it.” So they got it. 2:21 He went out to the spring and threw the salt in. Then he said, “This is what the Lord says, ‘I have purified 4 this water. It will no longer cause death or fail to produce crops.” 5 2:22 The water has been pure to this very day, just as Elisha prophesied. 6
2:23 He went up from there to Bethel. 7 As he was traveling up the road, some young boys 8 came out of the city and made fun of him, saying, “Go on up, baldy! Go on up, baldy!” 2:24 When he turned around and saw them, he called God’s judgment down on them. 9 Two female bears came out of the woods and ripped forty-two of the boys to pieces. 2:25 From there he traveled to Mount Carmel and then back to Samaria. 10
1 tn Heb “my.”
2 tn Heb “miscarries” or “is barren.”
3 tn Heb “he”; the referent (Elisha) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
4 tn Or “healed.”
5 tn Heb “there will no longer be from there death and miscarriage [or, ‘barrenness’].”
6 tn Heb “according to the word of Elisha which he spoke.”
8 tn The word נַעַר (na’ar), here translated “boy,” can refer to a broad age range, including infants as well as young men. But the qualifying term “young” (or “small”) suggests these youths were relatively young. The phrase in question (“young boy”) occurs elsewhere in 1 Sam 20:35; 1 Kgs 3:7 (used by Solomon in an hyperbolic manner); 11:17; 2 Kgs 5:14; and Isa 11:6.
9 tn Heb “he cursed them in the name of the
10 sn The two brief episodes recorded in vv. 19-25 demonstrate Elisha’s authority and prove that he is the legitimate prophetic heir of Elijah. He has the capacity to bring life and blessing to those who recognize his authority, or death and judgment to those who reject him.