The Bible: 2 Kings Chapter 1: with Audio and Commentary.

Version: World English Bible.

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2 Kings Chapter 1

1 Moab rebelled against Israel after the death of Ahab.

2 Ahaziah fell down through the lattice in his upper room that was in Samaria, and was sick. So he sent messengers, and said to them, "Go, enquire of Baal Zebub, the god of Ekron, whether I will recover of this sickness."

3 But the LORD's angel said to Elijah the Tishbite, "Arise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria, and tell them, 'Is it because there is no God in Israel, that you go to enquire of Baal Zebub, the god of Ekron?

4 Now therefore the LORD says, "You will not come down from the bed where you have gone up, but you will surely die." ' " Then Elijah departed.

5 The messengers returned to him, and he said to them, "Why is it that you have returned?"

6 They said to him, "A man came up to meet us, and said to us, 'Go, return to the king who sent you, and tell him, "The LORD says, 'Is it because there is no God in Israel, that you send to enquire of Baal Zebub, the god of Ekron? Therefore you will not come down from the bed where you have gone up, but you will surely die.' " ' "

7 He said to them, "What kind of man was he who came up to meet you, and told you these words?"

8 They answered him, "He was a hairy man, and wearing a leather belt around his waist." He said, "It's Elijah the Tishbite."

9 Then the king sent a captain of fifty with his fifty to him. He went up to him; and behold, he was sitting on the top of the hill. He said to him, "Man of God, the king has said, 'Come down!' "

10 Elijah answered to the captain of fifty, "If I am a man of God, then let fire come down from the sky, and consume you and your fifty!" Then fire came down from the sky, and consumed him and his fifty.

11 Again he sent to him another captain of fifty with his fifty. He answered him, "Man of God, the king has said, 'Come down quickly!' "

12 Elijah answered them, "If I am a man of God, then let fire come down from the sky, and consume you and your fifty!" Then God's fire came down from the sky, and consumed him and his fifty.

13 Again he sent the captain of a third fifty with his fifty. The third captain of fifty went up, and came and fell on his knees before Elijah, and begged him, and said to him, "Man of God, please let my life, and the life of these fifty of your servants, be precious in your sight.

14 Behold, fire came down from the sky, and consumed the last two captains of fifty with their fifties. But now let my life be precious in your sight."

15 The LORD's angel said to Elijah, "Go down with him. Don't be afraid of him." Then he arose, and went down with him to the king.

16 He said to him, "The LORD says, 'Because you have sent messengers to enquire of Baal Zebub, the god of Ekron, is it because there is no God in Israel to enquire of his word? Therefore you will not come down from the bed where you have gone up, but you will surely die.' "

17 So he died according to the LORD's word which Elijah had spoken. Jehoram began to reign in his place in the second year of Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, because he had no son.

18 Now the rest of the acts of Ahaziah which he did, aren't they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel?


Verse 3 (LORD)
When rendered in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS, "LORD" or "GOD" is the translation of God's Proper Name.
Verse 3 (God)
The Hebrew word rendered "God" is Elohim.
Verse 9 (Behold)
"Behold" means look at, take notice, observe, see, or gaze at. It is often used as an interjection.

Version: World English Bible


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2 Kings Chapter 1 Guide

The history of the second Book of Kings is a continuation of that contained in the first Book. There everything ended with the dark days immediately following the death of Ahab and the passing into comparative obscurity of Elijah. This book centres first around Elisha.

The condition of things is evident from the opening statement of this chapter. Israel was at war with Moab. Ahaziah, the son of Alah, was on the throne; he was an evil man, and unable to govern because of sickness. He sought counsel from Baal-zebub, the god of Ehon. Elijah, who had been in seclusion, suddenly appeared, protesting against this action of the king. Twice Ahaziah attempted to capture him, and in each case the answer of God on behalf of His servant was a swift judgment of fire. At last Elijah went to the king and pronounced a sentence on him that was immediately carried out.

Thus, while we see the terrible degradation of the nation, we also observe how the testimony of truth was kept alive, and how over the ruin of His people through apostasy God was still governing and moving carrying out His own purpose.

To all such as are in any way called into fellowship with God in service how great a vision this is. There is nothing more calculated to keep the heart firm and steady than this truth perpetually taught through Old Testament history, that God abides, and retains in His own hand the reins of government.

From "An Exposition of the Whole Bible" by G. Campbell Morgan.

2 Kings Chapter 1 Commentary

Chapter Outline

  1. The revolt of Moab--Sickness of Ahaziah, king of Israel. -- (1-8)
  2. Fire called from heaven by Elijah--Death of Ahaziah. -- (9-18)

Verses 1-8

When Ahaziah rebelled against the Lord, Moab revolted from him. Sin weakens and impoverishes us. Man's revolt from God is often punished by the rebellion of those who owe subjection to him. Ahaziah fell through a lattice, or railing. Wherever we go, there is but a step between us and death. A man's house is his castle, but not to secure him against God's judgments. The whole creation, which groans under the burden of man's sin, will, at length, sink and break under the weight like this lattice. He is never safe that has God for his enemy. Those that will not inquire of the word of God for their comfort, shall hear it to their terror, whether they will or no.

Verses 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.

From the "Concise Commentary on the Bible" by Matthew Henry.