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2 Kings 25:3-4

Context
25:3 By the ninth day of the fourth month 1  the famine in the city was so severe the residents 2  had no food. 25:4 The enemy broke through the city walls, 3  and all the soldiers tried to escape. They left the city during the night. 4  They went through the gate between the two walls that is near the king’s garden. 5  (The Babylonians were all around the city.) Then they headed for the Jordan Valley. 6 

1 tn The MT has simply “of the month,” but the parallel passage in Jer 52:6 has “fourth month,” and this is followed by almost all English translations. The word “fourth,” however, is not actually present in the MT of 2 Kgs 25:3.

sn According to modern reckoning that would have been July 18, 586 b.c. The siege thus lasted almost a full eighteen months.

2 tn Heb “the people of the land.”

3 tn Heb “the city was breached.”

4 tn The Hebrew text is abrupt here: “And all the men of war by the night.” The translation attempts to capture the sense.

5 sn The king’s garden is mentioned again in Neh 3:15 in conjunction with the pool of Siloam and the stairs that go down from the city of David. This would have been in the southern part of the city near the Tyropean Valley which agrees with the reference to the “two walls” which were probably the walls on the eastern and western hills.

6 sn Heb “toward the Arabah.” The Arabah was the rift valley north and south of the Dead Sea. Here the intention was undoubtedly to escape across the Jordan to Moab or Ammon. It appears from Jer 40:14; 41:15 that the Ammonites were known to harbor fugitives from the Babylonians.



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