2 Kings 9:1
And Elisha the prophet called one of the children of the prophets, and said to him, Gird up your loins, and take this box of oil in your hand, and go to Ramothgilead:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
IX.

JEHU ANOINTED BY ELISHA’S MESSENGER AS KING OF ISRAEL. HE SLAYS JEHORAM. AHAZIAH AND JEZEBEL. (Comp. 2. Chron. 22:7-9.)

(1) And Elisha the prophet called.—Rather, meanwhile Elisha had called—i.e., while Joram was lying ill of his wounds. The Hebrew construction again indicates not so much succession as contemporaneousness.

One of the children (sons) of the prophets.—Rashi says it was Jonah, who is mentioned in 2Kings 14:25.

Box.—The same word occurs again only in 1Samuel 10:1. Render, phial.

2 Kings 9:1. And Elisha the prophet called, &c. — The Prophet Elijah was commanded to anoint Jehu about twelve years before this time; but, because of Ahab’s humiliation, the execution of the judgment pronounced upon him and his family was deferred. The office of anointing Jehu therefore, it seems, was left to be performed by Elisha; who did not go himself, either because he was grown old and unfit for such a journey, or because he was a person too well known to be employed in an affair that required secrecy. Go to Ramoth-gilead — The kings of Israel and Judah were both absent, and Jehu, it is probable, was left commander-in-chief of the king’s army which lay there.9:1-10 In these and the like events, we must acknowledge the secret working of God, disposing men to fulfil his purposes respecting them. Jehu was anointed king over Israel, by the Lord's special choice. The Lord still had a remnant of his people, and would yet preserve his worship among them. Of this Jehu was reminded. He was commanded to destroy the house of Ahab, and, as far as he acted in obedience to God, and upon right principles, he needed not to regard reproach or opposition. The murder of God's prophets is strongly noticed. Jezebel persisted in idolatry and enmity to Jehovah and his servants, and her iniquity was now full.Box - Rather, "flask," or "vial" 1 Samuel 10:1. Oil and ointment were commonly kept in open-mouthed jars, vases, or bottles made of glass, alabaster, or earthen-ware. Many such vessels have been found both in Egypt and Assyria. The "oil" was the holy oil, compounded after the receipt given in Exodus Exo 30:23-25. CHAPTER 9

2Ki 9:1-23. Jehu Is Anointed.

1. Ramoth-gilead—a city of great importance to the Hebrew people, east of Jordan, as a fortress of defense against the Syrians. Jehoram had regained it (2Ki 8:29). But the Israelitish army was still encamped there, under the command of Jehu.

Elisha … called one of the children of the prophets—This errand referred to the last commission given to Elijah in Horeb (1Ki 19:16).

box of oil—(See 1Sa 10:1).Elisha sendeth a young prophet with instructions to anoint Jehu king over Israel; whom he chargeth to destroy the house of Ahab, and fleeth, 2 Kings 9:1-10. Jehu is made king by the soldiers; killeth Joram in the field of Naboth, 2 Kings 9:11- 26; killeth also Ahaziah king of Judah, 2 Kings 9:27-29; causeth Jezebel to be thrown out of a window; who is devoured by dogs, 2 Kings 9:30-37.

Gird up thy loins; for haste, to take this opportunity when the kings of Israel and Judah were both absent, 2 Kings 8:29, and Jehu, as it seems, was left in chief command. Partly that the work may not be hindered, and partly for the security of thy own person. See 2 Kings 9:3.

And Elisha the prophet called one of the children of the prophets,.... Who the Jews generally say (k) was Jonah the son of Amittai:

and said, gird up thy loins; his loose and long garments about his loins, for quicker dispatch in travelling:

and take this box of oil in thine hand; for an use after directed to:

and go to Ramothgilead; where Joram had left his army with his captains, to keep the city from the Syrians.

(k) Seder Olam Rabba, c. 18. p. 47.

And Elisha the prophet called one of the children of the prophets, and said unto him, {a} Gird up thy loins, and take this box of oil in thine hand, and go to Ramothgilead:

(a) Prepare yourself to go diligently about your business for in those countries they used long garments which they tucked up when they went about earnest business.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Ch. 2 Kings 9:1-10. Elisha sends one of the sons of the prophets to anoint Jehu, and give him his commission (Not in Chronicles)

And Elisha the prophet called one of the children [R.V. sons] of the prophets] ‘Children gives a wrong idea. The prophetic communities were formed of men who came together for worship, and were not necessarily connected in any family relationship, any more than Elisha was connected with Elijah. Elisha had an attendant who served him as he had served his master. Such a one he chooses for his messenger to Jehu.

Gird up thy loins] The moment had come for executing God’s vengeance on the house of Ahab, and the work is to be done without delay. Joram’s conduct seems to have prepared the feelings of the army for a revolt.

take this box [R.V. vial] of oil] ‘Vial’ is the rendering of this word in A.V. of 1 Samuel 10:1 and is a more appropriate word when used for an oil vessel. It only occurs there and in this chapter. Jehu alone of all the kings of Israel was anointed.

to Ramoth-gilead] Here Jehu and his fellow officers had apparently been left in charge, while Joram went away to Jezreel. But from Joram’s action, when he finds Jehu approaching Jezreel (verse 21), it is clear that his wound was not of a very serious character. It may be therefore that he had seized the first opportunity of withdrawing from the war to the capital. If so the soldiery would be inclined to favour the generals who remained through the campaign, and to hold the king in contempt. This would explain the ease with which Jehu’s attempt succeeded in Ramoth-gilead, and the readiness with which his fellow generals fell in with the movement.Verse 1. - And Elisha the prophet called one of the children of the prophets; i.e. one of the students in one of the prophetical schools which he superintended. There is no indication that the individual chosen for the mission stood to Elisha in any peculiar relation. A rabbinical fancy, scarcely to be called a tradition, makes him "Jonah, the son of Amittai." And said unto him, Gird up thy loins, and take this box of oil; rather, this flask of oil. Oil and ointments were commonly kept in open-mouthed jars, vases, or bottles, made of stone, glass, or alabaster, as appears from the remains found in Egypt and Assyria. Many of the bottles are earlier than the time of Elisha. In thine hand, and go to Ramoth-Gilead. Ramoth-Gilead lay across the Jordan, in the proper territory of Gad. It had been seized and occupied by the Syrians in the reign of Ahab; and the possession had been maintained till recently. Joram, however, had recovered it (Josephus, 'Ant. Jud.,' 9:6. § 1, Ἤδη γὰρ αὐτὴν ἡρήκει κατὰ κράτος), and had left a strong garrison in the place when he retired to Jezreel. According to 2 Chronicles 21:18., Joram died of a terrible disease, in which his bowels fell out, and was buried in the city of David, though not in the family sepulchre of the kings.

(Note: "The building of Carthage, Dido, her husband Sichaeus, her brother Pygmalion king of Tyre (scelere ante alios immanior omnes), all coincide with the reign of Joram. This synchronism of the history of Tyre is not without significance here. The Tyrian, Israelitish, and Judaean histories are closely connected at this time. Jezebel, a Tyrian princess, was Ahab's wife, and again her daughter Athaliah was the wife of Joram, and after his death the murderess of the heirs of the kingdom, and sole occupant of the throne. Tyre, through these marriages, introduced its own spirit and great calamity into both the Israelitish kingdoms." - J. D. Michaelis on 2 Kings 8:24.)

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