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2 Kings 10:16-30

Context
10:16 Jehu 1  said, “Come with me and see how zealous I am for the Lord’s cause.” 2  So he 3  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, 4  just as the Lord had announced to Elijah. 5 

Jehu Executes the Prophets and Priests of Baal

10:18 Jehu assembled all the people and said to them, “Ahab worshiped 6  Baal a little; Jehu will worship 7  him with great devotion. 8  10:19 So now, bring to me all the prophets of Baal, as well as all his servants and priests. 9  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 10  so he could destroy the servants of Baal. 10:20 Then Jehu ordered, “Make arrangements for 11  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. 12  10:22 Jehu ordered the one who was in charge of the wardrobe, 13  “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 14  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.” 15  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!” 16 

10:25 When he finished offering the burnt sacrifice, Jehu ordered the royal guard 17  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. 18  Then they entered the inner sanctuary of the temple of Baal. 19  10:26 They hauled out the sacred pillar of the temple of Baal and burned it. 10:27 They demolished 20  the sacred pillar of Baal and 21  the temple of Baal; it is used as 22  a latrine 23  to this very day. 10:28 So Jehu eradicated Baal worship 24  from Israel.

A Summary of Jehu’s Reign

10:29 However, Jehu did not repudiate the sins which Jeroboam son of Nebat had encouraged Israel to commit; the golden calves remained in Bethel 25  and Dan. 26  10:30 The Lord said to Jehu, “You have done well. You have accomplished my will and carried out my wishes with regard to Ahab’s dynasty. Therefore four generations of your descendants will rule over Israel.” 27 

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

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

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

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

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

6 tn Or “served.

7 tn Or “serve.”

8 tn Heb “much” or “greatly.”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

16 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.”

17 tn Heb “runners.”

18 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.

19 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.”

20 tn Or “pulled down.”

21 tn The verb “they demolished” is repeated in the Hebrew text.

22 tn Heb “and they made it into.”

23 tn The consonantal text (Kethib) has the hapax legomenon מַחֲרָאוֹת (makharaot), “places to defecate” or “dung houses” (note the related noun חרא (khr’)/חרי (khri), “dung,” HALOT 348-49 s.v. *חֲרָאִים). The marginal reading (Qere) glosses this, perhaps euphemistically, מוֹצָאוֹת (motsaot), “outhouses.”

24 tn Heb “destroyed Baal.”

25 map For location see Map4 G4; Map5 C1; Map6 E3; Map7 D1; Map8 G3.

26 tn Heb “Except the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat which he caused Israel to commit, Jehu did not turn aside from after them – the golden calves which [were in] Bethel and which [were] in Dan.”

27 tn Heb “Because you have done well by doing what is proper in my eyes – according to all which was in my heart you have done to the house of Ahab – sons of four generations will sit for you on the throne of Israel.” In the Hebrew text the Lord’s statement is one long sentence (with a parenthesis). The translation above divides it into shorter sentences for stylistic reasons.

sn Jehu ruled over Israel from approximately 841-814 b.c. Four of his descendants (Jehoahaz, Jehoash, Jeroboam II, and Zechariah) ruled from approximately 814-753 b.c. The dynasty came to an end when Shallum assassinated Zechariah in 753 b.c. See 2 Kgs 15:8-12.



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