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1 Now Jehoram the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria the eighteenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and reigned twelve years.

2 And he wrought evil in the sight of the LORD; but not like his father, and like his mother: for he put away the image of Baal that his father had made.

3 Nevertheless he cleaved unto the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, which made Israel to sin; he departed not therefrom.

4 And Mesha king of Moab was a sheepmaster, and rendered unto the king of Israel an hundred thousand lambs, and an hundred thousand rams, with the wool.

5 But it came to pass, when Ahab was dead, that the king of Moab rebelled against the king of Israel.

6 And king Jehoram went out of Samaria the same time, and numbered all Israel.

7 And he went and sent to Jehoshaphat the king of Judah, saying, The king of Moab hath rebelled against me: wilt thou go with me against Moab to battle? And he said, I will go up: I am as thou art, my people as thy people, and my horses as thy horses.

8 And he said, Which way shall we go up? And he answered, The way through the wilderness of Edom.

9 So the king of Israel went, and the king of Judah, and the king of Edom: and they fetched a compass of seven days' journey: and there was no water for the host, and for the cattle that followed them.

10 And the king of Israel said, Alas! that the LORD hath called these three kings together, to deliver them into the hand of Moab!

11 But Jehoshaphat said, Is there not here a prophet of the LORD, that we may enquire of the LORD by him? And one of the king of Israel's servants answered and said, Here is Elisha the son of Shaphat, which poured water on the hands of Elijah.

12 And Jehoshaphat said, The word of the LORD is with him. So the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat and the king of Edom went down to him.

13 And Elisha said unto the king of Israel, What have I to do with thee? get thee to the prophets of thy father, and to the prophets of thy mother. And the king of Israel said unto him, Nay: for the LORD hath called these three kings together, to deliver them into the hand of Moab.

14 And Elisha said, As the LORD of hosts liveth, before whom I stand, surely, were it not that I regard the presence of Jehoshaphat the king of Judah, I would not look toward thee, nor see thee.

15 But now bring me a minstrel. And it came to pass, when the minstrel played, that the hand of the LORD came upon him.

16 And he said, Thus saith the LORD, Make this valley full of ditches.

17 For thus saith the LORD, Ye shall not see wind, neither shall ye see rain; yet that valley shall be filled with water, that ye may drink, both ye, and your cattle, and your beasts.

18 And this is but a light thing in the sight of the LORD: he will deliver the Moabites also into your hand.

19 And ye shall smite every fenced city, and every choice city, and shall fell every good tree, and stop all wells of water, and mar every good piece of land with stones.

20 And it came to pass in the morning, when the meat offering was offered, that, behold, there came water by the way of Edom, and the country was filled with water.

21 And when all the Moabites heard that the kings were come up to fight against them, they gathered all that were able to put on armour, and upward, and stood in the border.

22 And they rose up early in the morning, and the sun shone upon the water, and the Moabites saw the water on the other side as red as blood:

23 And they said, This is blood: the kings are surely slain, and they have smitten one another: now therefore, Moab, to the spoil.

24 And when they came to the camp of Israel, the Israelites rose up and smote the Moabites, so that they fled before them: but they went forward smiting the Moabites, even in their country.

25 And they beat down the cities, and on every good piece of land cast every man his stone, and filled it; and they stopped all the wells of water, and felled all the good trees: only in Kirharaseth left they the stones thereof; howbeit the slingers went about it, and smote it.

26 And when the king of Moab saw that the battle was too sore for him, he took with him seven hundred men that drew swords, to break through even unto the king of Edom: but they could not.

27 Then he took his eldest son that should have reigned in his stead, and offered him for a burnt offering upon the wall. And there was great indignation against Israel: and they departed from him, and returned to their own land.

Commentary for 2 Kings 3

Jehoram, king of Israel. (1-5) War with Moab, The intercession of Elisha. (6-19) Water supplied, Moab overcome. (20-27)1-5 Jehoram took warning by God's judgment, and put away the image of Baal, yet he maintained the worship of the calves. Those do not truly repent or reform, who only part with the sins they lose by, but continue to love the sins that they think to gain by.

6-19 The king of Israel laments their distress, and the danger they were in. He called these kings together, yet he charges it upon Providence. Thus the foolishness of man perverteth his way, and then his heart fretteth against the Lord, #Pr 19:3|. It was well that Jehoshaphat inquired of the Lord now, but it had been much better if he had done it before he engaged in this war. Good men sometimes neglect their duty, till necessity and affliction drive them to it. Wicked people often fare the better for the friendship and society of the godly. To try their faith and obedience, Elisha bids them make the valley full of pits to receive water. Those who expect God's blessings, must dig pools for the rain to fill, as in the valley of Baca, and thus make even that a well, #Ps 84:6|. We need not inquire whence the water came. God is not tied to second causes. They that sincerely seek for the dew of God's grace, shall have it, and by it be made more than conquerors.

20-27 It is a blessing to be favoured with the company of those who have power with God, and can prevail by their prayers. A kingdom may be upheld and prosper, in consequence of the fervent prayers of those who are dear to God. May we place our highest regard upon such as are most precious in his account. When sinners are saying Peace, peace, destruction comes upon them: despair will follow their mad presumption. In Satan's service and at his suggestion, such horrid deeds have been done, as cause the natural feelings of the heart to shudder; like the king of Moab's sacrificing his son. It is well not to urge the worst of men to extremities; we should rather leave them to the judgment of God.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for 2 Kings 3

  • Stanjett on 2 Kings 3
    Elisha and Elijah may be the two witnesses in the last days. They do call down fire from Heaven, which is one of the signs that the two witnesses do. And Elijah did not die but God took him. Like Enoch. Maybe they will be Elijah and Enoch. I always hoped to be one but I think they are Jews.
  • Hadasha on 2 Kings 3
    We must 'push the envelope' where God is concerned. When we have a need we oftentimes seek after the assistance of false friends and 'frenemies.' If we would just declare 'Thus saith the LORD, Make this valley full of ditches.' 2 Kings 3: 16 and further declare, 'For thus saith the LORD, Ye shall not see wind, neither shall ye see rain; yet that valley shall be filled with water.' Miracle!
  • Donatus on 2 Kings 3
    "Elisha poured water on the hands of Elijah" to me this is an example of total humility n submissiveness of the prophet no wonder he got a double portion a anointing .
  • April on 2 Kings 3
    I just wanted to say first,GLORY BE TO FATHER,2nd thank you to all who comment on your interpretations of what you read,for some this is as close to communication as they can get about father and his word,we are not here to debate,but to speak truth and I just wanted to say thank you for your thoughts,it does help to see things differently sometimes, I wish you well in your walk and God Bless!!.
  • Anne on 2 Kings 3
    Elisha served Elijah the prophet of God, faithfully. When we stay and work in the service of God He will use us mightily.
  • Peter A. Okebukola on 2 Kings 3
    God is ever winning battles for the Israelites. Elisha was the vessel through which God spoke to the three kings. If we obey God, He will speak to us through the Holy Spirit and win our battles for us.
  • Eaglesrock on 2 Kings 3
    Elisha left everything to be with Elijah. Elijah had been his master, walking alongside him and teaching him the ministry of a prophet. They left the promise land and cross on dry ground to the other side. Elijah insisted that Elisha leave him., he repeated three times: Stay here, the Lord has sent me to Bethel. but Elisha s reply was always the same: As surely as the Lord lives and you live, I will not leave you. 2 Kings 2 . Some of us would have given up at Elijah s insistence, but not Elisha. He would go with Elijah until the very end. The Bible emphasizes the importance of preserving to the end without giving up. Faithfulness is one of the secrets to staying in the house of God and discovering His purpose for our lives. When Elijah attached a condition to the request, he was teaching Elisha that the answer depended only on him. It didn t depend on Elijah. Elijah s condition, If you see me didn t only mean that Elisha would have to see Elijah ascending, it had a deeper meaning as well: it meant seeing him as Father.
  • Noah Mwedzi on 2 Kings 3
    The issue of consulting a prophet in this case, reminds us of how important these Great Man of God are,and we surely must emulate the same. There is a great number of such great Man of God in our midst today, are we listening to the msgs they give us always? No we re insteady found wanting as we tend to persecute them with insults and blasphemy. Saints let us heed to the calling of God and remain blameproof as we tarry on steadfastly and immovable. God Bless.
  • Bisi on 2 Kings 3
    Our God is the only one that specialises in solving impossibilities, Jehoshaphat 's life is a challenge to me in love, devotion to God and love toward fellow brethren. He endangered his life when he followed Ahab to battle yet he did the same for his son but not without consulting with the man of God. We today 's christian should emulate this, we should help others who needs our help.
  • A..Thomes selvarajan on 2 Kings 3:11
    Elisha pored water on the hands of Elijah this might have happened when Elisha made feast to his people.Elisha would have fed Elijah too and would have pored water submisevly on the hands of Elijah before and after having enjoyed the feast.


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According to 2 Kings, wow many years did King Jehoram reign?
  • 7 years
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  • 31 years