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2 Kings 2:23-24

Context

2:23 He went up from there to Bethel. 1  As he was traveling up the road, some young boys 2  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. 3  Two female bears came out of the woods and ripped forty-two of the boys to pieces.

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

2 tn The word נַעַר (naar), 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.

3 tn Heb “he cursed them in the name of the Lord.” A curse was a formal appeal to a higher authority (here the Lord) to vindicate one’s cause through judgment. As in chapter one, this account makes it clear that disrespect for the Lord’s designated spokesmen can be deadly, for it is ultimately rejection of the Lord’s authority.



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