1 Kings 20:35
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
By the word of the LORD one of the company of the prophets said to his companion, "Strike me with your weapon," but he refused.

New Living Translation
Meanwhile, the LORD instructed one of the group of prophets to say to another man, "Hit me!" But the man refused to hit the prophet.

English Standard Version
And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said to his fellow at the command of the LORD, “Strike me, please.” But the man refused to strike him.

New American Standard Bible
Now a certain man of the sons of the prophets said to another by the word of the LORD, "Please strike me." But the man refused to strike him.

King James Bible
And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said unto his neighbour in the word of the LORD, Smite me, I pray thee. And the man refused to smite him.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
One of the sons of the prophets said to his fellow prophet by the word of the LORD, "Strike me!" But the man refused to strike him.

International Standard Version
Right about then, one of the members of the guild of prophets told another through a message from the LORD: "Please strike me!" But the man refused to do so,

NET Bible
One of the members of the prophetic guild, speaking with divine authority, ordered his companion, "Wound me!" But the man refused to wound him.

New Heart English Bible
A certain man of the sons of the prophets said to his fellow by the word of the LORD, "Please strike me." The man refused to strike him.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
A disciple of the prophets spoke to a friend as the word of the LORD had told him. [The disciple said,] "Punch me," but the man refused to punch him.

JPS Tanakh 1917
And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said unto his fellow by the word of the LORD: 'Smite me, I pray thee.' And the man refused to smite him.

New American Standard 1977
Now a certain man of the sons of the prophets said to another by the word of the LORD, “Please strike me.” But the man refused to strike him.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Then a certain man of the sons of the prophets said unto his neighbour by the word of the LORD, Smite me, I pray thee. And the man refused to smite him.

King James 2000 Bible
And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said unto his neighbor by the word of the LORD, Smite me, I pray you. And the man refused to smite him.

American King James Version
And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said to his neighbor in the word of the LORD, Smite me, I pray you. And the man refused to smite him.

American Standard Version
And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said unto his fellow by the word of Jehovah, Smite me, I pray thee. And the man refused to smite him.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Then a certain man of the sons of the prophets said to his companion in the word of the Lord: Strike me. But he would not strike.

Darby Bible Translation
And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said to another by the word of Jehovah, Smite me, I pray thee. But the man refused to smite him.

English Revised Version
And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said unto his fellow by the word of the LORD, Smite me, I pray thee. And the man refused to smite him.

Webster's Bible Translation
And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said to his neighbor in the word of the LORD, Smite me, I pray thee. And the man refused to smite him.

World English Bible
A certain man of the sons of the prophets said to his fellow by the word of Yahweh, "Please strike me!" The man refused to strike him.

Young's Literal Translation
And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said unto his neighbour by the word of Jehovah, 'Smite me, I pray thee;' and the man refuseth to smite him,
Study Bible
A Prophet Reproves Ahab
34Ben-hadad said to him, "The cities which my father took from your father I will restore, and you shall make streets for yourself in Damascus, as my father made in Samaria." Ahab said, "And I will let you go with this covenant." So he made a covenant with him and let him go. 35Now a certain man of the sons of the prophets said to another by the word of the LORD, "Please strike me." But the man refused to strike him. 36Then he said to him, "Because you have not listened to the voice of the LORD, behold, as soon as you have departed from me, a lion will kill you." And as soon as he had departed from him a lion found him and killed him.…
Cross References
1 Thessalonians 4:15
By the word of the Lord, we declare to you that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who have fallen asleep.

1 Kings 13:17
"For a command came to me by the word of the LORD, 'You shall eat no bread, nor drink water there; do not return by going the way which you came.'"

1 Kings 13:18
He said to him, "I also am a prophet like you, and an angel spoke to me by the word of the LORD, saying, 'Bring him back with you to your house, that he may eat bread and drink water.'" But he lied to him.

2 Kings 2:3
Then the sons of the prophets who were at Bethel came out to Elisha and said to him, "Do you know that the LORD will take away your master from over you today?" And he said, "Yes, I know; be still."

Amos 7:14
Then Amos replied to Amaziah, "I am not a prophet, nor am I the son of a prophet; for I am a herdsman and a grower of sycamore figs.
Treasury of Scripture

And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said to his neighbor in the word of the LORD, Smite me, I pray you. And the man refused to smite him.

Smite me

1 Kings 20:35 And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said to his neighbor …

Exodus 21:12 He that smites a man, so that he die, shall be surely put to death.

so that [heb} smiting and wounding

(35) A certain man--according to Josephus, Micaiah, the son of Imlah. This tradition, or conjecture, agrees well with the subsequent narrative in 1 Kings 22.

The sons of the prophets.--This phrase, constantly recurring in the history of Elijah and Elisha, first appears here. But the thing designated is apparently as old as the days of Samuel who is evidently surrounded by "a company" of disciples. (See 1Samuel 10:5; 1Samuel 10:10; 1Samuel 19:20.) The prophetic office seems never to have been, like the priesthood or kingship, hereditary. "Sonship," therefore, no doubt means simply discipleship; and it is likely enough that the schools of the sons of the prophets were places of higher religious education, including many who did not look for the prophetic vocation; although the well-known words of Amos (Amos 7:14), "I was no prophet, neither was I a prophet's son," clearly indicate that from their ranks, generally though not invariably, the prophets were called. Probably the institution had fallen into disuse, and had been revived to seal and to secure the prophetic victory over Baal-worship. To Elijah the "sons of the prophets" look up with awe and some terror; to Elisha, with affectionate respect and trust.

Verse 35. - And a certain man [Heb. one man; cf. 1 Kings 13:11, note] of the sons of the prophets [Here mentioned for the first time, though the prophetic schools probably owed their existence, certainly their development, to Samuel. The בּנֵי הָנּ are of course not the children, but the pupils of the prophets. For this use of "son," cf. 1 Samuel 20:31 ("a son of death"); 2 Samuel 12:5; Deuteronomy 25:2; Matthew 23:15; 1 Kings 4:30; Ezra 2:1; John 17:12, and Amos 7:14. Gesenius refers to the Greek ἱατρῶν υἱοί ῤητόρων υἱοί, etc., and says that among the Persians "the disciples of the Magi are called, "Sons of Magi." The word, again, does not necessarily imply youth. That they were sometimes married men appears from 2 Kings 6:1, though this was probably after their collegiate life was ended. As they were called "sons," so their instructor, or head, was called "father" (1 Samuel 10:12)] said unto his neighbour [or companion. Another prophet is implied. It was because this "neighbour" was a prophet that his disregard of the word of the Lord was so sinful, and received such severe punishment], in the word of the Lord [see on 1 Kings 13:1], Smite me, I pray thee. [Why the prophet, in order to the accomplishment of his mission - which was to obtain from Ahab's own lips a confession of his deserts - why he should have been smitten, i.e., bruised and wounded, is not quite clear. For it is obvious that he might have sustained his part, told his story, and obtained a judgment from the king, without proceeding to such painful extremities. It is quite true that a person thus wounded would perhaps sustain the part of one who had been in battle better, but the wounds were in no way necessary to his disguise, and men do not court pain without imperious reasons. Besides, it was "in the word of the Lord" that these wounds were sought and received. It is quite clear, therefore, that it cannot have been merely to give him a claim to an audience with the king (Ewald) - he could easily have simulated wounds by means of bandages, which would at the same time have helped to disguise him - or that he might foreshadow in his own person the wounding which Ahab would receive (1 Kings 22:11), for of that he says nothing, or for any similar reason. The wounding, we may be quite sure, and the tragical circumstances connected therewith, are essential parts of the parable this prophet had to act, of the lesson he had to teach. 1%w the great lesson he had to convey, not to the king alone, but to the prophetic order and to the whole country, the lesson most necessary in that lawless age, was that of implicit unquestioning obedience to the Divine law. Ahab had just transgressed that law. He had "let go a man whom God had appointed to utter destruction;" he had heaped honours on the oppressor of his country, and in gratifying benevolent impulses had ignored the will and counsel of God (see on ver. 42). No doubt it seemed to him, as it has seemed to others since, that he had acted with rare magnanimity, and that his generosity in that age, an age which showed no mercy to the fallen, was unexampled. But he must be taught that he has no right to be generous at the expense of others; that God's will must be done even when it goes against the grain, when it contradicts impulses of kindness, and demands painful sacrifices. He is taught this by the prophetic word (ver. 42), but much more effectively by the actions which preceded it. A prophet required to smite a brother prophet, and that for no apparent reason, would no doubt find it repugnant to his feelings to do so; it would seem to him hard and cruel and shameful to smite a companion. But the prophet who refused to do this, who followed his benevolent impulses in preference to the word of the Lord, died for his sin - died forthwith by the visitation of God. What a lesson was this to king and country - for no doubt the incident would be bruited abroad, and the very strangeness of the whole proceeding would heighten the impression it made. Indeed, it is hardly possible to conceive a way in which the duty of unquestioning obedience could be more emphatically taught. When this prophet appeared before the king, a man had smitten and wounded him, disagreeable and painful as the task must have been, because of the word of the Lord; whilst a brother prophet, who declined the office because it was painful, had been slain by a wild beast. It is easy to see that there was here a solemn lesson for the king, and that the wounding gave it its edge.] And the man refused to smite him. And a certain man of the sons of the prophets,.... Which the Jews take to be Micaiah, and so Josephus (u), which is probable; the same that had been with Ahab more than once; and, whoever he was, it is not unlikely that he was the same, since Ahab knew him when his disguise was off, 1 Kings 20:41,

said unto his neighbour, in the word of the Lord, smite me, I pray thee; told his neighbour, that by the command of God he was ordered to bid him smite him, so as to wound him:

and the man refused to smite him; being his neighbour, and perhaps a fellow prophet, and having an affection for him.

(u) Antiqu. l. 8. c. 14. sect, 5. 1Ki 20:35-42. A Prophet Reproves Him.

35-38. Smite me—This prophet is supposed (1Ki 20:8) to have been Micaiah. The refusal of his neighbor to smite the prophet was manifestly wrong, as it was a withholding of necessary aid to a prophet in the discharge of a duty to which he had been called by God, and it was severely punished [1Ki 20:36], as a beacon to warn others (see on [321]1Ki 13:2-24). The prophet found a willing assistant, and then, waiting for Ahab, leads the king unconsciously, in the parabolic manner of Nathan (2Sa 12:1-4), to pronounce his own doom; and this consequent punishment was forthwith announced by a prophet (see on [322]1Ki 21:17).20:31-43 This encouragement sinners have to repent and humble themselves before God; Have we not heard, that the God of Israel is a merciful God? Have we not found him so? That is gospel repentance, which flows from an apprehension of the mercy of God, in Christ; there is forgiveness with him. What a change is here! The most haughty in prosperity often are most abject in adversity; an evil spirit will thus affect a man in both these conditions. There are those on whom, like Ahab, success is ill bestowed; they know not how to serve either God or their generation, or even their own true interests with their prosperity: Let favour be showed to the wicked, yet will he not learn righteousness. The prophet designed to reprove Ahab by a parable. If a good prophet were punished for sparing his friend and God's when God said, Smite, of much sorer punishment should a wicked king be thought worthy, who spared his enemy and God's, when God said, Smite. Ahab went to his house, heavy and displeased, not truly penitent, or seeking to undo what he had done amiss; every way out of humour, notwithstanding his victory. Alas! many that hear the glad tidings of Christ, are busy and there till the day of salvation is gone.
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