13:1 In the twenty-third year of the reign of Judah’s King Joash son of Ahaziah, Jehu’s son Jehoahaz became king over Israel. He reigned in Samaria 1 for seventeen years. 13:2 He did evil in the sight of 2 the Lord. He continued in 3 the sinful ways of Jeroboam son of Nebat who had encouraged Israel to sin; he did not repudiate those sins. 4 13:3 The Lord was furious with 5 Israel and handed them over to 6 King Hazael of Syria and to Hazael’s son Ben Hadad for many years. 7
13:4 Jehoahaz asked for the Lord’s mercy 8 and the Lord responded favorably, 9 for he saw that Israel was oppressed by the king of Syria. 10 13:5 The Lord provided a deliverer 11 for Israel and they were freed from Syria’s power. 12 The Israelites once more lived in security. 13 13:6 But they did not repudiate 14 the sinful ways of the family 15 of Jeroboam, who encouraged Israel to sin; they continued in those sins. 16 There was even an Asherah pole 17 standing in Samaria. 13:7 Jehoahaz had no army left 18 except for fifty horsemen, ten chariots, and 10,000 foot soldiers. The king of Syria had destroyed his troops 19 and trampled on them like dust. 20
13:8 The rest of the events of Jehoahaz’s reign, including all his accomplishments and successes, are recorded in the scroll called the Annals of the Kings of Israel. 21 13:9 Jehoahaz passed away 22 and was buried 23 in Samaria. His son Joash replaced him as king.
13:10 In the thirty-seventh year of King Joash’s reign over Judah, Jehoahaz’s son Jehoash became king over Israel. He reigned in Samaria 24 for sixteen years. 13:11 He did evil in the sight of 25 the Lord. He did not repudiate 26 the sinful ways of Jeroboam son of Nebat who encouraged Israel to sin; he continued in those sins. 27 13:12 The rest of the events of Joash’s 28 reign, including all his accomplishments and his successful war with King Amaziah of Judah, are recorded in the scroll called the Annals of the Kings of Israel. 29 13:13 Joash passed away 30 and Jeroboam succeeded him on the throne. 31 Joash was buried in Samaria with the kings of Israel.
13:14 Now Elisha had a terminal illness. 32 King Joash of Israel went down to visit him. 33 He wept before him and said, “My father, my father! The chariot 34 and horsemen of Israel!” 35 13:15 Elisha told him, “Take a bow and some arrows,” and he did so. 36 13:16 Then Elisha 37 told the king of Israel, “Aim the bow.” 38 He did so, 39 and Elisha placed his hands on the king’s hands. 13:17 Elisha 40 said, “Open the east window,” and he did so. 41 Elisha said, “Shoot!” and
he did so. 42 Elisha 43 said, “This arrow symbolizes the victory the Lord will give you over Syria. 44 You will annihilate Syria in Aphek!” 45 13:18 Then Elisha 46 said, “Take the arrows,” and he did so. 47 He told the king of Israel, “Strike the ground!” He struck the ground three times and stopped. 13:19 The prophet 48 got angry at him and said, “If you had struck the ground five or six times, you would have annihilated Syria! 49 But now, you will defeat Syria only three times.”
13:20 Elisha died and was buried. 50 Moabite raiding parties invaded 51 the land at the beginning of the year. 52 13:21 One day some men 53 were burying a man when they spotted 54 a raiding party. So they threw the dead man 55 into Elisha’s tomb. When the body 56 touched Elisha’s bones, the dead man 57 came to life and stood on his feet.
13:22 Now King Hazael of Syria oppressed Israel throughout Jehoahaz’s reign. 58 13:23 But the Lord had mercy on them and felt pity for them. 59 He extended his favor to them 60 because of the promise he had made 61 to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He has been unwilling to destroy them or remove them from his presence to this very day. 62 13:24 When King Hazael of Syria died, his son Ben Hadad replaced him as king. 13:25 Jehoahaz’s son Jehoash took back from 63 Ben Hadad son of Hazael the cities that he had taken from his father Jehoahaz in war. Joash defeated him three times and recovered the Israelite cities.
[13:6] 16 tc Heb “in it he walked.” The singular verb (הָלַךְ, halakh) is probably due to an error of haplography and should be emended to the plural (הָלְכּוּ, halÿku). Note that a vav immediately follows (on the form וְגַם, vÿgam).
[13:6] sn Asherah was a leading deity of the Canaanite pantheon, wife/sister of El and goddess of fertility. She was commonly worshiped at shrines in or near groves of evergreen trees, or, failing that, at places marked by wooden poles. These were to be burned or cut down (Deut 12:3; 16:21; Judg 6:25, 28, 30; 2 Kgs 18:4).
[13:12] 29 tn Heb “As for the rest of the events of Joash, and all which he did and his strength, [and] how he fought with Amaziah king of Judah, are they not written on the scroll of the events of the days of the kings of Israel?”
[13:20] 52 tc The MT reading בָּא שָׁנָה (ba’ shanah), “it came, year,” should probably be emended to בְּבָּא הַשָּׁנָה (bÿba’ hashanah), “at the coming [i.e., ‘beginning’] of the year.” See M. Cogan and H. Tadmor, II Kings (AB), 148.
[13:21] 57 tn Heb “he”; the referent (the dead man) has been specified in the translation for clarity. Otherwise the reader might think it was Elisha rather than the unnamed dead man who came back to life.