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The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary
   

Melachim II - II Kings - Chapter 9

Melachim II - II Kings - Chapter 9

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Rashi's Commentary:

Chapter 9

1. And Elisha the prophet summoned one of the disciples of the prophets and said to him, "Gird your loins and take this cruse of oil in your hand, and go to Ramoth-Gilead.   א. וֶאֱלִישָׁע הַנָּבִיא קָרָא לְאַחַד מִבְּנֵי הַנְּבִיאִים וַיֹּאמֶר לוֹ חֲגֹר מָתְנֶיךָ וְקַח פַּךְ הַשֶּׁמֶן הַזֶּה בְּיָדֶךָ וְלֵךְ רָמֹת גִּלְעָד:
And Elisha the prophet summoned…: at that same time that Jehoram was ill in Jezreel.  
one of the disciples of the prophets: It was Jonah the son of Amittai.  
Gird your loins: Every girding of the loins is an expression of quickening of mightiness. Since he was a messenger for a perilous mission, (he needed quickening).  
2. And you shall come there, and see there Jehu the son of Jehoshaphat the son of Nimshi, and you shall come and raise him up from among his brothers and bring him into an inner chamber."   ב. וּבָאתָ שָׁמָּה וּרְאֵה שָׁם יֵהוּא בֶן יְהוֹשָׁפָט בֶּן נִמְשִׁי וּבָאתָ וַהֲקֵמֹתוֹ מִתּוֹךְ אֶחָיו וְהֵבֵיאתָ אֹתוֹ חֶדֶר בְּחָדֶר:
3. And you shall take the cruse of oil and pour it on his head, and you shall say, "So said the Lord, 'I have anointed you as king over Israel.' And you shall open the door and flee; do not tarry."   ג. וְלָקַחְתָּ פַךְ הַשֶּׁמֶן וְיָצַקְתָּ עַל רֹאשׁוֹ וְאָמַרְתָּ כֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה מְשַׁחְתִּיךָ לְמֶלֶךְ אֶל יִשְׂרָאֵל וּפָתַחְתָּ הַדֶּלֶת וְנַסְתָּה וְלֹא תְחַכֶּה:
4. And the lad, the disciple of the prophet, went to Ramoth- Gilead.   ד. וַיֵּלֶךְ הַנַּעַר הַנַּעַר הַנָּבִיא רָמֹת גִּלְעָד:
the lad, the disciple of the prophet: the disciple of Elisha the prophet, so did Jonathan render: and the lad, the disciple of the prophet, went.  
5. And he came, and behold, the officers of the army were sitting; and he said, "I have a message for you, officer," and Jehu said, "For which one of all of us?" And he said, "For you, officer."   ה. וַיָּבֹא וְהִנֵּה שָׂרֵי הַחַיִל יֹשְׁבִים וַיֹּאמֶר דָּבָר לִי אֵלֶיךָ הַשָּׂר וַיֹּאמֶר יֵהוּא אֶל מִי מִכֻּלָּנוּ וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלֶיךָ הַשָּׂר:
6. And he arose and came to the house and poured oil on his head. And he said to him, "So said the Lord God of Israel, 'I have anointed you as king over the Lord's people, over Israel.   ו. וַיָּקָם וַיָּבֹא הַבַּיְתָה וַיִּצֹק הַשֶּׁמֶן אֶל רֹאשׁוֹ וַיֹּאמֶר לוֹ כֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל מְשַׁחְתִּיךָ לְמֶלֶךְ אֶל עַם יְהֹוָה אֶל יִשְׂרָאֵל:
7. And you shall strike the house of Ahab your master, and I will avenge the blood of My servants the prophets and the blood of all the Lord's servants from Jezebel.   ז. וְהִכִּיתָה אֶת בֵּית אַחְאָב אֲדֹנֶיךָ וְנִקַּמְתִּי דְּמֵי | עֲבָדַי הַנְּבִיאִים וּדְמֵי כָּל עַבְדֵי יְהֹוָה מִיַּד אִיזָבֶל:
8. And the entire house of Ahab will perish; and I will cut off from Ahab all males and every restrained and free in Israel.   ח. וְאָבַד כָּל בֵּית אַחְאָב וְהִכְרַתִּי לְאַחְאָב מַשְׁתִּין בְּקִיר וְעָצוּר וְעָזוּב בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל:
9. And I shall render the house of Ahab like the house of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and like the house of Baasha the son of Ahijah.   ט. וְנָתַתִּי אֶת בֵּית אַחְאָב כְּבֵית יָרָבְעָם בֶּן נְבָט וּכְבֵית בַּעְשָׁא בֶן אֲחִיָּה:
10. And the dogs will eat Jezebel in the territory of Jezreel and no one will bury her.' " And he opened the door and fled.   י. וְאֶת אִיזֶבֶל יֹאכְלוּ הַכְּלָבִים בְּחֵלֶק יִזְרְעֶאל וְאֵין קֹבֵר וַיִּפְתַּח הַדֶּלֶת וַיָּנֹס:
11. And Jehu went out to his master's servants, and one said to him, "Is all well? Why did this madman come to you?" And he said, "You know the man and his speech."   יא. וְיֵהוּא יָצָא אֶל עַבְדֵי אֲדֹנָיו וַיֹּאמֶר לוֹ הֲשָׁלוֹם מַדּוּעַ בָּא הַמְשֻׁגָּע הַזֶּה אֵלֶיךָ וַיֹּאמֶר אֲלֵיהֶם אַתֶּם יְדַעְתֶּם אֶת הָאִישׁ וְאֶת שִׂיחוֹ:
You know the man: You recognize the man, that he is mad.  
12. And they said, "It is a lie; please tell us." And he said, "He said to me thus and thus, saying, 'So said the Lord, "I have anointed you as king over Israel." ' "   יב. וַיֹּאמְרוּ שֶׁקֶר הַגֶּד נָא לָנוּ וַיֹּאמֶר כָּזֹאת וְכָזֹאת אָמַר אֵלַי לֵאמֹר כֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה מְשַׁחְתִּיךָ לְמֶלֶךְ אֶל יִשְׂרָאֵל:
And they said, It is a lie: that you are saying. You are hiding what he said to you.  
13. And they hastened, and each one took his garment and they put them under him on the top step, and they sounded the shofar and said, "Jehu has become king!"   יג. וַיְמַהֲרוּ וַיִּקְחוּ אִישׁ בִּגְדוֹ וַיָּשִֹימוּ תַחְתָּיו אֶל גֶּרֶם הַמַּעֲלוֹת וַיִּתְקְעוּ בַּשּׁוֹפָר וַיֹּאמְרוּ מָלַךְ יֵהוּא:
on the top step: Jonathan [renders]: on the step of the hours, a type of steps made corresponding to the hours of the day, to know each hour when the shade descends one hour. [It was a type of sundial. The word used for step is] gerem, ourle in Old French, an expression of a notch. [Similarly, the word] “Hagramah,” in the laws of “shechitah” is from this derivation, that one slaughters in a straight line, and then cuts downwards, making an appearance of a hillock above.  
14. And Jehu son of Jehoshaphat son of Nimshi revolted against Joram, while Joram was guarding in Ramoth- Gilead, he and all Israel, against Hazael king of Aram.   יד. וַיִּתְקַשֵּׁר יֵהוּא בֶּן יְהוֹשָׁפָט בֶּן נִמְשִׁי אֶל יוֹרָם וְיוֹרָם הָיָה שֹׁמֵר בְּרָמֹת גִּלְעָד הוּא וְכָל יִשְׂרָאֵל מִפְּנֵי חֲזָאֵל מֶלֶךְ אֲרָם:
15. And King Jehoram returned to recuperate in Jezreel from the wounds that the Arameans inflicted upon him when he fought with Hazael king of Aram. And Jehu said, "If you so desire, let no survivor leave the city to go and tell in Jezreel."   טו. וַיָּשָׁב יְהוֹרָם הַמֶּלֶךְ לְהִתְרַפֵּא בִיְזְרְעֶאל מִן הַמַּכִּים אֲשֶׁר יַכֻּהוּ אֲרַמִּים בְּהִלָּחֲמוֹ אֶת חֲזָאֵל מֶלֶךְ אֲרָם וַיֹּאמֶר יֵהוּא אִם יֵשׁ נַפְשְׁכֶם אַל יֵצֵא פָלִיט מִן הָעִיר לָלֶכֶת לְהַגִּיד בְּיִזְרְעֶאל:
If you so desire: that I reign.  
from the city: from Ramoth-Gilead.  
tell: [Heb.] לַגִּיד, same as לְהַגִּיד.  
16. And Jehu rode and went to Jezreel for Joram was lying there, and Ahaziah king of Judah went down to see Joram.   טז. וַיִּרְכַּב יֵהוּא וַיֵּלֶךְ יִזְרְעֶאלָה כִּי יוֹרָם שֹׁכֵב שָׁמָּה וַאֲחַזְיָה מֶלֶךְ יְהוּדָה יָרַד לִרְאוֹת אֶת יוֹרָם:
17. And the lookout was standing on the tower in Jezreel, and he saw Jehu's troop when it came, and he said, "I see a troop." And Jehoram said, "Take a rider and send him toward them, and let him say, 'Is there peace?' "   יז. וְהַצֹּפֶה עֹמֵד עַל הַמִּגְדָּל בְּיִזְרְעֶאל וַיַּרְא אֶת שִׁפְעַת יֵהוּא בְּבֹאוֹ וַיֹּאמֶר שִׁפְעַת אֲנִי רֹאֶה וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוֹרָם קַח רַכָּב וּשְׁלַח לִקְרָאתָם וְיֹאמַר הֲשָׁלוֹם:
18. The horse rider went toward him and said, "So said the king, 'Is there peace?' " and Jehu said, "What is it to you whether there is peace? Fall in behind me." And the lookout reported saying, "The messenger came up to them and did not return."   יח. וַיֵּלֶךְ רֹכֵב הַסּוּס לִקְרָאתוֹ וַיֹּאמֶר כֹּה אָמַר הַמֶּלֶךְ הֲשָׁלוֹם וַיֹּאמֶר יֵהוּא מַה לְּךָ וּלְשָׁלוֹם סֹב אֶל אַחֲרָי וַיַגֵּד הַצֹּפֶה לֵאמֹר בָּא הַמַּלְאָךְ עַד הֵם וְלֹא שָׁב:
19. And he sent a second horse rider, who came to them and said, "So said the king, 'Is there peace?' " And Jehu said, "What is it to you whether there is peace? Fall in behind me."   יט. וַיִּשְׁלַח רֹכֵב סוּס שֵׁנִי וַיָּבֹא אֲלֵהֶם וַיֹּאמֶר כֹּה אָמַר הַמֶּלֶךְ שָׁלוֹם וַיֹּאמֶר יֵהוּא מַה לְּךָ וּלְשָׁלוֹם סֹב אֶל אַחֲרָי:
20. And the lookout reported saying, "He came up to them and did not return. His driving is like the driving of Jehu the son of Nimshi, for he drives madly.   כ. וַיַגֵּד הַצֹּפֶה לֵאמֹר בָּא עַד אֲלֵיהֶם וְלֹא שָׁב וְהַמִּנְהָג כְּמִנְהַג יֵהוּא בֶן נִמְשִׁי כִּי בְשִׁגָּעוֹן יִנְהָג:
21. And Jehoram said, "Hitch up!" And he hitched up his chariot. And Jehoram king of Israel and Ahaziah king of Judah, went out each in his own chariot; they went out toward Jehu, and they found him in the territory of Naboth the Jezreelite.   כא. וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוֹרָם אֱסֹר וַיֶּאְסֹר רִכְבּוֹ וַיֵּצֵא יְהוֹרָם מֶלֶךְ יִשְׂרָאֵל וַאֲחַזְיָהוּ מֶלֶךְ יְהוּדָה אִישׁ בְּרִכְבּוֹ וַיֵּצְאוּ לִקְרַאת יֵהוּא וַיִּמְצָאֻהוּ בְּחֶלְקַת נָבוֹת הַיִּזְרְעֵאלִי:
22. And it was when Jehoram saw Jehu, that he said, "Is there peace, Jehu?" And he said, "What peace is there with the harlotries of Jezebel your mother and her numerous sorceries?"   כב. וַיְהִי כִּרְאוֹת יְהוֹרָם אֶת יֵהוּא וַיֹּאמֶר הֲשָׁלוֹם יֵהוּא וַיֹּאמֶר מָה הַשָּׁלוֹם עַד זְנוּנֵי אִיזֶבֶל אִמְּךָ וּכְשָׁפֶיהָ הָרַבִּים:
23. And Jehoram turned his hands around and fled. And he said to Ahaziah, "Treachery, Ahaziah!"   כג. וַיַּהֲפֹךְ יְהוֹרָם יָדָיו וַיָּנֹס וַיֹּאמֶר אֶל אֲחַזְיָהוּ מִרְמָה אֲחַזְיָה:
24. And Jehu put all his strength into his bow, and he hit Jehoram between his arms, and the arrow protruded from his heart, and he fell to his knees in his chariot.   כד. וְיֵהוּא מִלֵּא יָדוֹ בַקֶּשֶׁת וַיַּךְ אֶת יְהוֹרָם בֵּין זְרֹעָיו וַיֵּצֵא הַחֵצִי מִלִּבּוֹ וַיִּכְרַע בְּרִכְבּוֹ:
25. And he said to Bidkar, his officer, "Pick him up! Throw him into the territory of the field of Naboth the Jezreelite, for remember that you and I were riding together after Ahab his father, when the Lord pronounced this prophecy upon him:   כה. וַיֹּאמֶר אֶל בִּדְקַר שָׁלִשׁוֹ שָֹא הַשְׁלִכֵהוּ בְּחֶלְקַת שְׂדֵה נָבוֹת הַיִּזְרְעֵאלִי כִּי זְכֹר אֲנִי וָאַתָּה אֵת רֹכְבִים צְמָדִים אַחֲרֵי אַחְאָב אָבִיו וַיהֹוָה נָשָֹא עָלָיו אֶת הַמַּשָּׂא הַזֶּה:
that… were riding together: how you and I were riding together after Ahab on the day that he killed Naboth.  
when the Lord pronounced… upon him: this prophecy through the prophet Elijah, and we heard.  
26. 'Did I not see the blood of Naboth and the blood of his children last night?' says the Lord. 'I shall requite you in this plot,' says the Lord. And now, pick [him] up and throw him into this plot according to the word of the Lord."   כו. אִם לֹא אֶת דְּמֵי נָבוֹת וְאֶת דְּמֵי בָנָיו רָאִיתִי אֶמֶשׁ נְאֻם יְהֹוָה וְשִׁלַּמְתִּי לְךָ בַּחֶלְקָה הַזֹּאת נְאֻם יְהֹוָה וְעַתָּה שָֹא הַשְׁלִכֵהוּ בַּחֶלְקָה כִּדְבַר יְהֹוָה:
27. And Ahaziah king of Judah saw, and he fled by way of the garden-house, and Jehu pursued him, and he said, "Strike him too in the chariot." [And they struck him] at the ascent of Gur which is near Ibleam, and he fled to Megiddo and died there.   כז. וַאֲחַזְיָה מֶלֶךְ יְהוּדָה רָאָה וַיָּנַס דֶּרֶךְ בֵּית הַגָּן וַיִּרְדֹּף אַחֲרָיו יֵהוּא וַיֹּאמֶר גַּם אֹתוֹ הַכֻּהוּ אֶל הַמֶּרְכָּבָה בְּמַעֲלֵה גוּר אֲשֶׁר אֶת יִבְלְעָם וַיָּנָס מְגִדּוֹ וַיָּמָת שָׁם:
Strike him… in the chariot: And in II Chron. (22:9), it is said: “And he sought Ahaziah, and they captured him when he was hiding in Samaria, and they brought him to Jehu.” [The discrepancy between] the verses can be reconciled [thus]: And… fled by way of the garden (sic) from Jezreel to Samaria. There is, however, an uncertainty in the matter, for Jehu had no rule in Samaria until the next day, as it is explained in this account (10:1): “And Jehu wrote letters and sent to Samaria…” Our Rabbis explained in the Aggadah of [the chapter] entitled ‘Chelek’ (San. 102b): “And he was hiding in Samaria, that he would cut out the Divine Names [from the Scriptures] and write [the names of] pagan deities in their place.” According to them, we can say that this hiding was not because of Jehu, but thus is its explanation: And he sought Ahaziah, and they captured him when he was fleeing by way of the garden (sic), and he had been behaving wickedly from the beginning, for he would come to Samaria and hide from the Judean officers to commit this abomination, since the inhabitants of Samaria were idolaters. “And they brought him to Jehu,” [i.e.,] Jehu’s men, who had pursued him. “And he said, ‘strike him… in the chariot.’”  
at the ascent of Gur: for there they brought him to him.  
28. And his servants carried him in a chariot to Jerusalem, and they buried him in his grave with his forefathers in the city of David.   כח. וַיַּרְכִּבוּ אֹתוֹ עֲבָדָיו יְרוּשָׁלְָמָה וַיִּקְבְּרוּ אֹתוֹ בִקְבֻרָתוֹ עִם אֲבֹתָיו בְּעִיר דָּוִד:
29. And in the eleventh year of Joram son of Ahab, Ahaziah became king over Judah.   כט. וּבִשְׁנַת אַחַת עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁנָה לְיוֹרָם בֶּן אַחְאָב מָלַךְ אֲחַזְיָה עַל יְהוּדָה:
And in the eleventh year of Joram son of Ahab, Ahaziah became king: Above (8:25) it is stated, “In the twelfth year.” And you are forced to say that Jehoram his father did not die until the twelfth year of Joram, for in the fifth year of Joram he became king (8:16) and he reigned for eight years (8:17). Now why does it say here, “In the eleventh year?” I say that he reigned one year during his father’s lifetime since he was afflicted with severe maladies, as it is said: “And after all this, the Lord afflicted him with incurable illness. And it was by the end of a year, that his intestines went out because of his illness… And the inhabitants of Jerusalem made Ahaziah… king” (II Chron 21:18-22:1.) Here (8:26) it is stated: “Ahaziah was twenty-two years old when he reigned, and in II Chron. (22:2), ” He was (sic) forty-two years old when he reigned.“ Now all the days of Jehoram his father was forty years, no more, as it is said concerning him: ” He was thirty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned eight years (8:17).“ Now how is it possible for a son to be two years older than his father? Rather, twenty years before he was born, which was two years before his father was born, this decree was issued. From the day that Asa took a daughter of Omri in marriage for Jehoshaphat his son, a decree was issued upon the house of David that it be destroyed with the house of Ahab. And thus it is stated in II Chron. (22:7) ” And from God was Ahaziah’s confusion, to come to Joram…“ Thus it is taught in Seder Olam (ch. 17) and in the Tosefta of Sotah (ch. 12). Nowhere in the Scriptures, however, do we find that Jehoshaphat married Omri’s daughter. I did find, however, in II Chron. (18: 1) ” And he (Jehoshaphat) intermarried with Ahab.“ Perhaps this refers to his sister whom he married. And in the thirty- first year of Asa he married her, as it is said: ” In the thirty- first year of Asa… Omri reigned" (I Kings 15:23). And we learned in Seder Olam (ch. 17) that he reigned over the entire kingdom, for six years prior to then, he reigned over half the people, and when Asa took his daughter in marriage to Jehoshaphat, he gained prestige, and they assassinated Tibni. Proceed and calculate from the thirty first year of Asa until the death of Ahaziah and you will find them to be forty two.  
30. And Jehu came to Jezreel, and Jezebel heard, and she painted her eyes and she adorned her head, and looked out of the window.   ל. וַיָּבוֹא יֵהוּא יִזְרְעֶאלָה וְאִיזֶבֶל שָׁמְעָה וַתָּשֶׂם בַּפּוּךְ עֵינֶיהָ וַתֵּיטֶב אֶת רֹאשָׁהּ וַתַּשְׁקֵף בְּעַד הַחַלּוֹן:
she adorned her head: She adorned her head in order to have charm in Jehu’s eyes so that he would marry her.  
31. And Jehu came into the gate; and she said, "Is there peace, Zimri, assassin of his master?"   לא. וְיֵהוּא בָּא בַשָּׁעַר וַתֹּאמֶר הֲשָׁלוֹם זִמְרִי הֹרֵג אֲדֹנָיו:
Is there peace: Do you wish to be with me in peace?  
Zimri, assassin of his master: If you assassinated your master, this is nothing new, for Zimri too assassinated Elah son of Baasha.  
32. And he lifted his face to the window and said, "Who is with me? Who?" And two or three eunuchs looked out to him.   לב. וַיִּשָּׂא פָנָיו אֶל הַחַלּוֹן וַיֹּאמֶר מִי אִתִּי מִי וַיַּשְׁקִיפוּ אֵלָיו שְׁנַיִם שְׁלשָׁה סָרִיסִים:
Who is with me?: Who among you will come to my aid?  
33. And he said, "Push her out!" And they pushed her out, and some of her blood splattered on the wall and on the horses, and they trampled her.   לג. וַיֹּאמֶר שִׁמְטוּהָ וַיִּשְׁמְטוּהָ וַיִּז מִדָּמָהּ אֶל הַקִּיר וְאֶל הַסּוּסִים וַיִּרְמְסֶנָּה:
“Push her out!”: of the window to the ground.  
34. And he came and ate and drank; and he said, "Attend to this cursed woman and bury her, for she is a king's daughter."   לד. וַיָּבֹא וַיֹּאכַל וַיֵּשְׁתְּ וַיֹּאמֶר פִּקְדוּ נָא אֶת הָאֲרוּרָה הַזֹּאת וְקִבְרוּהָ כִּי בַת מֶלֶךְ הִיא:
35. And they went to bury her, but they did not find of her save the skull, the feet, and the palms of the hands.   לה. וַיֵּלְכוּ לְקָבְרָהּ וְלֹא מָצְאוּ בָהּ כִּי אִם הַגֻּלְגֹּלֶת וְהָרַגְלַיִם וְכַפּוֹת הַיָּדָיִם:
the skull, the feet: Our Rabbis said, that she would dance before bridegrooms with her hands and feet, and shake her head.  
36. And they returned and told him: and he said, "It is God's word which he spoke through his prophet, Elijah the Tishbite, saying, 'In the territory of Jezreel the dogs will devour Jezebel's flesh.   לו. וַיָּשֻׁבוּ וַיַּגִּידוּ לוֹ וַיֹּאמֶר דְּבַר יְהֹוָה הוּא אֲשֶׁר דִּבֶּר בְּיַד עַבְדּוֹ אֵלִיָּהוּ הַתִּשְׁבִּי לֵאמֹר בְּחֵלֶק יִזְרְעֶאל יֹאכְלוּ הַכְּלָבִים אֶת בְּשַֹר אִיזָבֶל:
37. And Jezebel's corpse shall be as dung upon the field in the territory of Jezreel, so that no one will say, "This is Jezebel.' "   לז. וְהָיְתָה נִבְלַת אִיזֶבֶל כְּדֹמֶן עַל פְּנֵי הַשָּׂדֶה בְּחֵלֶק יִזְרְעֶאל אֲשֶׁר לֹא יֹאמְרוּ זֹאת אִיזָבֶל:
as dung: This follows Jonathan.  
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