2 Kings 2:17 MEANING

2 Kings 2:17
(17) Urged him.--Genesis 33:11.

Till he was ashamed.--Literally, unto being ashamed. The pronoun is not expressed in the Hebrew. "They pressed upon him, 'ad b?sh," means "until he was embarrassed, disconcerted, put out of countenance." (Comp. 2 Kings 8:11; Judges 3:25.) Thenius prefers "they carried their importunity to a shameless length;" Keil and Bahr, "until he was disappointed in the hope of dissuading them." (Comp. Psalm 22:5.)

Verse 17. - And when they urged him, till he was ashamed, he said, Send; literally, when they urged him until shame; which some expound to mean, "until they were ashamed to press him any more" (Gesenius, Winer, Keil); but others, with more reason, "until he was ashamed to persist in his refusal" (ἑὼς οῦ ἠσχύνετο, LXX.). It is always a hard thing for one man to refuse the repeated and earnest request of a multitude. When Elisha said, "Send," he had not in the least changed his mind; he only meant to say, "Send, then, if you insist upon it, to satisfy yourselves, not me. There is no harm in your sending." They sent therefore fifty men; and they sought three days, but found him not. The result bore out the advice and anticipations of the prophet. It was simply nil. No trace was found of the aged seer who had been translated from earth to heaven.

2:13-18 Elijah left his mantle to Elisha; as a token of the descent of the Spirit upon him; it was more than if he had left him thousands of gold and silver. Elisha took it up, not as a sacred relic to be worshipped, but as a significant garment to be worn. Now that Elijah was taken to heaven, Elisha inquired, 1. After God; when our creature-comforts are removed, we have a God to go to, who lives for ever. 2. After the God that Elijah served, and honoured, and pleaded for. The Lord God of the holy prophets is the same yesterday, to-day, and for ever; but what will it avail us to have the mantles of those that are gone, their places, their books, if we have not their spirit, their God? See Elisha's dividing the river; God's people need not fear at last passing through the Jordan of death as on dry ground. The sons of the prophets made a needless search for Elijah. Wise men may yield to that, for the sake of peace, and the good opinion of others, which yet their judgment is against, as needless and fruitless. Traversing hills and valleys will never bring us to Elijah, but following the example of his holy faith and zeal will, in due time.And when they urged him until he was ashamed,.... To deny them any longer, being so very pressing and importunate:

he said, send; lest they should think he had not the respect for his master he should have had; or was so fond of his office, that he did not choose he should be found alive if he could, and return and reassume it:

they sent therefore fifty men; some one way, and some another:

and they sought three days, but found him not; and then returned.

Courtesy of Open Bible