2 Kings 5:8
And it was so, when Elisha the man of God had heard that the king of Israel had rent his clothes, that he sent to the king, saying, Why have you rent your clothes? let him come now to me, and he shall know that there is a prophet in Israel.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(8) There is a prophet.—With stress on there is (yēsh): scil., as his message pre-supposes.

When Elisha . . . had heard.—He was in Samaria at the time (2Kings 5:3), and would hear of the coming of the great Syrian captain and of the king’s alarm. Why did not Jehoram think at once of Elisha? King and prophet were not on good terms with each other. (Comp. 2Kings 3:14.) Besides, Elisha had not as yet done any miracle of this sort; and his apprehensions may have made the king unable, for the moment, to think at all.

2 Kings 5:8. Elisha sent to the king, saying, Wherefore hast thou rent thy clothes? — There is no just occasion for thee to do so. Let him come now to me — It was not for his own honour, but for the honour of God and his people, that he desires the leprous Syrian to be sent to him. And he shall know there is a prophet in Israel — One who can do that which the king of Israel dares not attempt, and which the prophets of Syria cannot pretend to: and it were sad with Israel if there were not. As the word prophet commonly signifies a man who declares things which none could know but God, and those to whom he revealed them, so here it signifies a man endued with a divine power, and who thereby could do what no man could effect, unless God were with him.5:1-8 Though the Syrians were idolaters, and oppressed God's people, yet the deliverance of which Naaman had been the means, is here ascribed to the Lord. Such is the correct language of Scripture, while those who write common history, plainly show that God is not in all their thoughts. No man's greatness, or honour, can place him our of the reach of the sorest calamities of human life: there is many a sickly, crazy body under rich and gay clothing. Every man has some but or other, something that blemishes and diminishes him, some allay to his grandeur, some damp to his joy. This little maid, though only a girl, could give an account of the famous prophet the Israelites had among them. Children should be early told of the wondrous works of God, that, wherever they go, they may talk of them. As became a good servant, she desired the health and welfare of her master, though she was a captive, a servant by force; much more should servants by choice, seek their masters' good. Servants may be blessings to the families where they are, by telling what they know of the glory of God, and the honour of his prophets. Naaman did not despise what she told, because of her meanness. It would be well if men were as sensible of the burden of sin as they are of bodily disease. And when they seek the blessings which the Lord sends in answer to the prayers of his faithful people, they will find nothing can be had, except they come as beggars for a free gift, not as lords to demand or purchase.He shall know ... Israel - namely, "That which thou (the king of Israel) appearest to have forgotten, that there is a prophet - a real Yahweh prophet - in Israel." 2Ki 5:8-15. Elisha Sends Him to Jordan, and He Is Healed.

8-12. when Elisha the man of God had heard that the king of Israel had rent his clothes, that he sent to the king, saying, … let him come now to me—This was the grand and ultimate object to which, in the providence of God, the journey of Naaman was subservient. When the Syrian general, with his imposing retinue, arrived at the prophet's house, Elisha sent him a message to "go and wash in Jordan seven times." This apparently rude reception to a foreigner of so high dignity incensed Naaman to such a degree that he resolved to depart, scornfully boasting that the rivers of Damascus were better than all the waters of Israel.

Jehoram had not advised with Elisha, either because the sudden surprisal made him forget it, or because he hated him, and scorned to beg any thing from him.

Wherefore hast thou rent thy clothes? there was no just occasion for thee to do so. And it was so, when Elisha the man of God had heard that the king of Israel had rent his clothes,.... And upon what account:

that he sent to the king, saying, wherefore hast thou rent thy clothes? and thereby expressed so much concern and distress:

let him come now to me: meaning Naaman the Syrian leper:

and he shall know that there is a prophet in Israel; able in the name of the Lord to work miracles, which he should be sensible of and acknowledge, to the glory of the God of Israel, by the cure that should be wrought upon him; and hereby he taxed the king of Israel with ignorance or neglect of him as a prophet.

And it was so, when Elisha the man of God had heard that the king of Israel had rent his clothes, that he sent to the king, saying, {e} Wherefore hast thou rent thy clothes? let him come now to me, and he shall know that there is a prophet in Israel.

(e) The prophet rebukes the king because he did not consider that God was true in his promise, and therefore would not leave his Church destitute of a prophet, whose prayers he would hear, and to whom others could have recourse for comfort.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
8. that he sent to the king] The prophets of Jehovah were now in no such peril as they had been in Ahab’s days. Elisha has his house in the royal city, and has no fear of sending a message to the palace.

that there is a prophet in Israel] i.e. a true messenger of the God who can kill and make alive. Cf. the words of the people (Luke 7:16) when our Lord raised the widow’s son at Nain, ‘A great prophet is risen up among us, and God hath visited his people’.Verse 8. - And it was so - or, it came to pass - when Elisha the man of God (see 2 Kings 4:7, 16, etc.) had heard that the King of Israel had rent his clothes, that he sent to the king, saying, Wherefore hast thou rent thy clothes? The king's act was public; his complaint was public; he wished his subjects to know the outrageous conduct, as he viewed it, of the Syrian king (comp. 1 Kings 20:7, where Ahab similarly calls attention to the strait in which he is placed). Thus the rumor went through the town, and reached the ears of the prophet, who therefore sent a message to the king. Let him come now to me; i.e. let Naaman, instead of applying to thee, the earthly head of the state, the source of all human power, which is utterly unavailing in such a case, apply to me, the source of spiritual power, the commissioned minister of Jeho-yah, who alone can help him under the circumstances. And [then] he shall know that there is a prophet in Israel; i.e. he shall have swift and sure demonstration, that God "has not left himself without witness," that, "in spite of the apostasy of king and people, the God who can kill and make alive yet makes himself known in Israel in his saving might through his servants the prophets" (Bahr), of whom I am one. And in Naaman's house before his wife, i.e., in her service, there was an Israelitish maiden, whom the Syrians had carried off in a marauding expedition (גדוּדים יצאוּ: they had gone out in (as) marauding bands). She said to her mistress: "O that my lord were before the prophet at Samaria! (where Elisha had a house, 2 Kings 6:32), he would free him from his leprosy." מצּרעת אסף, to receive (again) from leprosy, in the sense of "to heal," may be explained from Numbers 12:14-15, where אסף is applied to the reception of Miriam into the camp again, from which she had been excluded on account of her leprosy.
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