2 Kings 2:23-24
And he went up from there to Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him…
I. THE EVENT AS REGARDS THE TRANSGRESSORS. They were the children of a small town among the hills, in one of the extremities of the land of Canaan, called Beth-el; the inhabitants depended chiefly for their living upon their flocks of sheep and the produce of the earth.
1. Wickedness arising from unexpected quarters. The children of Beth-el.
2. That there is a great responsibility connected with a family. Considering the tendencies of our nature to evil, and the bad examples around, us, nothing but strong common, sense, strong parental love and the fear of God, will enable parents to wash their hands from the blood of their offspring.
3. That neither age nor position exempts sin from being punished. The bears destroyed forty-two children of Beth-el. Rich and poor, high and low, old and young must be punished for their transgressions. God is no respecter of persons.
II. THE EVENT AS REGARDS THE PROPHET.
1. It is dangerous to persecute God's people. No weapon that is formed against them shall prosper, whether it be the stocks or the burning faggots, the Pope or the drunken vagabond. Seeing godly men in trouble, we might think that God is angry with them, but that is a great mistake.
2. That religion does not deprive man of the right of self-defence. Some people seem to think that a Christian must endure every species of injustice without uttering a word of protest.
3. That the kindest nature when aroused is the fiercest. In reading the history of the prophet we are struck with the generosity of his nature.
(W. Alonzo Griffiths.)
Parallel VersesKJV: 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.