|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
5:9-14 Elisha knew Naaman to be a proud man, and he would let him know, that before the great God all men stand upon the same level. All God's commands make trial of men's spirits, especially those which direct a sinner how to apply for the blessings of salvation. See in Naaman the folly of pride; a cure will not content him, unless he be cured with pomp and parade. He scorns to be healed, unless he be humoured. The way by which a sinner is received and made holy, through the blood, and by the Spirit of Christ, through faith alone in his name, does not sufficiently humour or employ self, to please the sinner's heart. Human wisdom thinks it can supply wiser and better methods of cleansing. Observe, masters should be willing to hear reason. As we should be deaf to the counsel of the ungodly, though given by great and respected names, so we are to have our ears open to good advice, though brought by those below us. Wouldst thou not do any thing? When diseased sinners are content to do any thing, to submit to any thing, to part with any thing, for a cure, then, and not till then, is there any hope of them. The methods for the healing of the leprosy of sin, are so plain, that we are without excuse if we do not observe them. It is but, Believe, and be saved; Repent, and be pardoned; Wash, and be clean. The believer applies for salvation, not neglecting, altering, or adding to the Saviour's directions; he is thus made clean from guilt, while others, who neglect them, live and die in the leprosy of sin.
Verse 9. - So Naaman came with his horses and with his chariot. The Syrians had had chariots, and used horses to draw them, from a remote date. The Hyksos, who introduced horses and chariots into Egypt, though not exactly a Syrian people, entered Egypt from Syria; and in all the Syrian wars of the Egyptians, which began about B.C. 1600, we find their adversaries employing a chariot force. In one representation of a fight between the Egyptians and a people invading Egypt from' Syria, the war-chariots of the latter are drawn by four oxen; but generally the horse was used on both sides. Syria imported her horses and chariots from Egypt (1 Kings 10:29), and, as appears from this passage, employed them for peaceful as well as for warlike purposes. There was a similar employment of them from a very early time in Egypt (see Genesis 41:43; Genesis 50:9). And stood at the door of the house of Elisha. Elisha was at this time residing in Samaria, whether in his own house or not we cannot say. His abode was probably a humble one; and when the great general, accompanied by his cavalcade of followers, drew up before it, he had, we may be sure, no intention of dismounting and entering. What he expected he tells us himself in ver. 11. The prophet regarded his pride and self-conceit as deserving of a rebuke.
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So Naaman came with his horses, and with his chariot,.... In his chariot drawn by horses; or "with horsemen and chariots", a great retinue, both for his own grandeur, and for the honour of the prophet, and to make him the more respectable by him:
and stood at the door of the house of Elisha; who now dwelt at Gilgal, as is probable, see 2 Kings 4:38, hither Naaman was directed, and here he stopped; and having sent a messenger to Elisha to acquaint him who he was, and what was his business, he stayed waiting for an answer.
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