2 Kings 2:23
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
He went up from there to Bethel, and while he was going up on the way, some small boys came out of the city and jeered at him, saying, “Go up, you baldhead! Go up, you baldhead!”

King James Bible
And he went up from thence unto Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head.

American Standard Version
And he went up from thence unto Beth-el; and as he was going up by the way, there came forth young lads out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou baldhead; go up, thou baldhead.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And he went up from thence to Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, little boys came out of the city and mocked him, saying: Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head.

English Revised Version
And he went up from thence unto Beth-el: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head.

Webster's Bible Translation
And he went up from thence to Beth-el: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said to him, Go up, thou bald-head; go up, thou bald-head.

2 Kings 2:23 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

But the disciples of the prophets at Jericho were so unable to realize the fact of Elijah's translation, although it had been previously revealed to them, that they begged permission of Elisha to send out fifty brave men to seek for Elijah. פּן־נשׂאו: whether the Spirit of the Lord has not taken him and cast him upon one of the mountains, or into one of the valleys. פּן with the perfect is used "where there is fear of a fact, which as is conjectured almost with certainty has already happened," like μὴ in the sense of "whether not" (vid., Ewald, 337, b.). יהוה רוּח is not a wind sent by Jehovah (Ges.), but the Spirit of Jehovah, as in 1 Kings 18:12. The Chethb גּיאות is the regular formation from גּיא or גּיא (Zechariah 14:4); the Keri with the transposition of א and ,י the later form: גּאיות, Ezekiel 7:16; Ezekiel 31:12, etc. The belief expressed by the disciples of the prophets, that Elijah might have been miraculously carried away, was a popular belief, according to 1 Kings 18:12, which the disciples of the prophets were probably led to share, more especially in the present case, by the fact that they could not imagine a translation to heaven as a possible thing, and with the indefiniteness of the expression ראשׁך מעל לקח could only understand the divine revelation which they had received as referring to removal by death. So that even if Elisha told them how miraculously Elijah had been taken from him, which he no doubt did, they might still believe that by the appearance in the storm the Lord had taken away His servant from this life, that is to say, had received his soul into heaven, and had left his earthly tabernacle somewhere on the earth, for which they would like to go in search, that they might pay the last honours to their departed master. Elisha yielded to their continued urgency and granted their request; whereupon fifty men sought for three days for Elijah's body, and after three days' vain search returned to Jericho. עד־בּשׁ, to being ashamed, i.e., till he was ashamed to refuse their request any longer (see at Judges 3:25).

The two following miracles of Elisha (2 Kings 2:19-25) were also intended to accredit him in the eyes of the people as a man endowed with the Spirit and power of God, as Elijah had been. 2 Kings 2:19-22. Elisha makes the water at Jericho wholesome. - During his stay at Jericho (2 Kings 2:18) the people of the city complained, that whilst the situation of the place was good in other respects, the water was bad and the land produced miscarriages. הארץ, the land, i.e., the soil, on account of the badness of the water; not "the inhabitants, both man and beast" (Thenius). Elisha then told them to bring a new dish with salt, and poured the salt into the spring with these words: "Thus saith the Lord, I have made this water sound; there will not more be death and miscarriage thence" (משּׁם). משׁלּכת is a substantive here (vid., Ewald, 160, e.). המּים מוצא is no doubt the present spring Ain es Sultn, the only spring near to Jericho, the waters of which spread over the plain of Jericho, thirty-five minutes' distance from the present village and castle, taking its rise in a group of elevations not far from the foot of the mount Quarantana (Kuruntul); a large and beautiful spring, the water of which is neither cold nor warm, and has an agreeable and sweet (according to Steph. Schultz, "somewhat salt") taste. It was formerly enclosed by a kind of reservoir or semicircular wall of hewn stones, from which the water was conducted in different directions to the plain (vid., Rob. Pal. ii. p. 283ff.). With regard to the miracle, a spring which supplied the whole of the city and district with water could not be so greatly improved by pouring in a dish of salt, that the water lost its injurious qualities for ever, even if salt does possess the power of depriving bad water of its unpleasant taste and injurious effects. The use of these natural means does not remove the miracle. Salt, according to its power of preserving from corruption and decomposition, is a symbol of incorruptibility and of the power of life which destroys death (see Bhr, Symbolik, ii. pp. 325,326). As such it formed the earthly substratum for the spiritual power of the divine word, through which the spring was made for ever sound. A new dish was taken for the purpose, not ob munditiem (Seb. Schm.), but as a symbol of the renewing power of the word of God. - But if this miracle was adapted to show to the people the beneficent character of the prophet's ministry, the following occurrence was intended to prove to the despisers of God that the Lord does not allow His servants to be ridiculed with impunity.

2 Kings 2:23 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Beth-el

1 Kings 12:28-32 Whereupon the king took counsel, and made two calves of gold, and said to them, It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem...

Hosea 4:15 Though you, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend; and come not you to Gilgal, neither go you up to Bethaven, nor swear...

Hosea 10:5,15 The inhabitants of Samaria shall fear because of the calves of Bethaven: for the people thereof shall mourn over it...

Amos 3:14 That in the day that I shall visit the transgressions of Israel on him I will also visit the altars of Bethel...

Amos 4:4 Come to Bethel, and transgress; at Gilgal multiply transgression; and bring your sacrifices every morning...

Amos 5:5 But seek not Bethel, nor enter into Gilgal, and pass not to Beersheba: for Gilgal shall surely go into captivity...

Amos 7:13 But prophesy not again any more at Bethel: for it is the king's chapel, and it is the king's court.

little children The words () not only signify {little children} but {young men}; for {katon} signifies not only {little}, but {young,} in opposition to {old;} and () signifies not only a {child}, but a {young man} grown to years of maturity: thus Isaac is called () when {twenty-eight} years old, Joseph when {thirty-nine}, and Rehoboam when {forty.} These idolatrous {young men}, having heard of the ascension of Elijah, without believing it, blasphemously bade Elisha to follow him. The venerable prophet, from a Divine impulse, pronounced a {curse} `in the name of the Lord,' which was immediately followed by the most terrible judgment; thus evincing the Source from which it flowed.

Job 19:18 Yes, young children despised me; I arose, and they spoke against me.

Job 30:1,8 But now they that are younger than I have me in derision, whose fathers I would have disdained to have set with the dogs of my flock...

Proverbs 20:11 Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.

Proverbs 22:6,15 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it...

Ecclesiastes 11:10 Therefore remove sorrow from your heart, and put away evil from your flesh: for childhood and youth are vanity.

Isaiah 1:4 Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the LORD...

Isaiah 3:5 And the people shall be oppressed, every one by another, and every one by his neighbor...

Jeremiah 7:18 The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven...

mocked

Genesis 21:9 And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, which she had born to Abraham, mocking.

2 Chronicles 36:16 But they mocked the messengers of God, and despised his words, and misused his prophets...

Job 30:1,8,9 But now they that are younger than I have me in derision, whose fathers I would have disdained to have set with the dogs of my flock...

Psalm 35:15 But in my adversity they rejoiced, and gathered themselves together: yes, the attackers gathered themselves together against me...

Isaiah 57:3,4 But draw near here, you sons of the sorceress, the seed of the adulterer and the whore...

Galatians 4:29 But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now.

Hebrews 11:36 And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yes, moreover of bonds and imprisonment:

Go up

2 Kings 2:11 And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire...

Matthew 27:29-31,40-43 And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it on his head, and a reed in his right hand: and they bowed the knee before him...

Cross References
Leviticus 13:40
"If a man's hair falls out from his head, he is bald; he is clean.

2 Kings 2:22
So the water has been healed to this day, according to the word that Elisha spoke.

2 Chronicles 36:16
But they kept mocking the messengers of God, despising his words and scoffing at his prophets, until the wrath of the LORD rose against his people, until there was no remedy.

Psalm 31:17
O LORD, let me not be put to shame, for I call upon you; let the wicked be put to shame; let them go silently to Sheol.

Psalm 31:18
Let the lying lips be mute, which speak insolently against the righteous in pride and contempt.

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