3:25 They tore down the cities and each man threw a stone into every cultivated field until they were covered. 1 They stopped up every spring and chopped down every productive tree.
Only Kir Hareseth was left intact, 2 but the slingers surrounded it and attacked it. 3:26 When the king of Moab realized he was losing the battle, 3 he and 700 swordsmen tried to break through and attack 4 the king of Edom, but they failed. 3:27 So he took his firstborn son, who was to succeed him as king, and offered him up as a burnt sacrifice on the wall. There was an outburst of divine anger against Israel, 5 so they broke off the attack 6 and returned to their homeland.
1 tn Heb “and [on] every good portion they were throwing each man his stone and they filled it.” The vav + perfect (“and they filled”) here indicates customary action contemporary with the situation described in the preceding main clause (where a customary imperfect is used, “they were throwing”). See the note at 3:4.
2 tn Heb “until he had allowed its stones to remain in Kir Hareseth.”
3 tn Heb “and the king of Moab saw that the battle was too strong for him.”
4 tn Heb “he took with him seven hundred men, who drew the sword, to break through against.”
5 tn Heb “there was great anger against Israel.”
sn The meaning of this statement is uncertain, for the subject of the anger is not indicated. Except for two relatively late texts, the noun קֶצֶף (qetsef) refers to an outburst of divine anger. But it seems unlikely the Lord would be angry with Israel, for he placed his stamp of approval on the campaign (vv. 16-19). D. N. Freedman suggests the narrator, who obviously has a bias against the Omride dynasty, included this observation to show that the Lord would not allow the Israelite king to “have an undiluted victory” (as quoted in M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings [AB], 52, n. 8). Some suggest that the original source identified Chemosh the Moabite god as the subject and that his name was later suppressed by a conscientious scribe, but this proposal raises more questions than it answers. For a discussion of various views, see M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 47-48, 51-52.
6 tn Heb “they departed from him.”