2 Kings 1:16
And he said to him, Thus said the LORD, For as much as you have sent messengers to inquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron, is it not because there is no God in Israel to inquire of his word? therefore you shall not come down off that bed on which you are gone up, but shall surely die.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(16) And he said.—Heb., spake. The LXX. adds, “and Elijah said.”

Is it not because.—Omit “not.” The question is here parenthetic, the connection of the main sentence being, “Forasmuch as thou hast sent . . . therefore thou shalt not come down,” &c.

Off.From, as in 2Kings 1:4; 2Kings 1:6. The words of the oracle are thrice repeated verbally.

“Here, just as in other cases,” says Bähr, “Elijah reappears suddenly and disappears again, and no one knows whence he comes or whither he goes.” The peculiar form of the story suggests that it was derived in the first instance from oral tradition rather than from a written source.

1:9-18 Elijah called for fire from heaven, to consume the haughty, daring sinners; not to secure himself, but to prove his mission, and to reveal the wrath of God from heaven, against the ungodliness and unrighteousness of men. Elijah did this by a Divine impulse, yet our Saviour would not allow the disciples to do the like, Lu 9:54. The dispensation of the Spirit and of grace by no means allowed it. Elijah was concerned for God's glory, those for their own reputation. The Lord judges men's practices by their principles, and his judgment is according to truth. The third captain humbled himself, and cast himself upon the mercy of God and Elijah. There is nothing to be got by contending with God; and those are wise for themselves, who learn submission from the fatal end of obstinacy in others. The courage of faith has often struck terror into the heart of the proudest sinner. So thunderstruck is Ahaziah with the prophet's words, that neither he, nor any about him, offer him violence. Who can harm those whom God shelters? Many who think to prosper in sin, are called hence like Ahaziah, when they do not expect it. All warns us to seek the Lord while he may be found.The charge of cruelty made against Elijah makes it needful to consider the question: What was Elijah's motive? And the answer is: Sharply to make a signal example, to vindicate God's honor in a striking way. Ahaziah had, as it were, challenged Yahweh to a trial of strength by sending a band of fifty to arrest one man. Elijah was not Jesus Christ, able to reconcile mercy with truth, the vindication of God's honor with the utmost tenderness for erring men, and awe them merely by His presence (compare John 18:6). In Elijah the spirit of the Law was embodied in its full severity. His zeal was fierce; he was not shocked by blood; he had no softness and no relenting. He did not permanently profit by the warning at Horeb (1 Kings 19:12 note). He continued the uncompromising avenger of sin, the wielder of the terrors of the Lord, such exactly as he had shown himself at Carmel. He is, consequently, no pattern for Christian men Luke 9:55; but his character is the perfection of the purely legal type. No true Christian after Pentecost would have done what Elijah did. But what he did, when he did it, was not sinful. It was but executing strict, stern justice. Elijah asked that fire should fall - God made it fall; and, by so doing, both vindicated His own honor, and justified the prayer of His prophet. 15, 16. he arose, and went down with him—a marvellous instance of faith and obedience. Though he well knew how obnoxious his presence was to the king, yet, on receiving God's command, he goes unhesitatingly, and repeats, with his own lips, the unwelcome tidings conveyed by the messengers. And he said unto him; to his very face. Nor durst the king lay hands upon him, being daunted with the prophet’s presence, and great courage, and confidence; and affrighted by the late dreadful evidence of his power with God and over men: and withal, struck with a Divine and extraordinary terror. And he said unto him,.... Elijah to King Ahaziah when introduced into his chamber; and after some discourse passed between them, he confirmed what he had said to his messengers, and expressed it in the same language as in 2 Kings 1:3; see Gill on 2 Kings 1:3, 2 Kings 1:4 And he said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Forasmuch as thou hast sent messengers to enquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron, is it not because there is no God in Israel to enquire of his word? therefore thou shalt not come down off that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Verse 16. - He said unto him; i.e. Elijah said to the king. Introduced into the royal presence, as a prisoner, perhaps fettered and chained, the prophet in no way lowered his tone or abated from the severity of his speech. Distinctly, in the plainest possible words, he warned the monarch that his end approached - he would never quit the bed whereon he lay, but, because he had insulted Jehovah by sending to consult the god of Ekron, would surely die. Apparently the king, abashed and confounded, released the prophet, and allowed him to go his way. Thus saith the Lord. Elijah rehearses the words of the message which he had sent by the first of the three captains (see ver. 6). Thus saith the Lord, Forasmuch as thou hast sent messengers to inquire of Baal-zebub the god of Ekron, is it not because there is no God in Israel to inquire of his word! Therefore thou shalt not come down off that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die. God's determinations are unalterable. After having executed the divine command, Elijah returned to the summit of the mountain, on which he dwelt. Most of the commentators suppose it to have been one of the peaks of Carmel, from 2 Kings 2:25 and 1 Kings 18:42, which is no doubt very probable, though it cannot be raised into certainty. Elijah's place of abode was known to the king; he therefore sent a captain with fifty men to fetch the prophet. To the demand of the captain, "Man of God, the king has said, Come down," Elijah replied, "And if I am a man of God, let fire fall from heaven and consume thee and thy fifty." (The expression ואם, and if, shows that Elijah's words followed immediately upon those of the captain.) This judicial miracle was immediately fulfilled.
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