1. But Elisha answered, "Listen to the word of Yahweh: Tomorrow at this same time, at the gate of Samaria, a measure of flour shall be sold for a piece of silver, and two measures of barley for a piece of silver, too."
2. The shield bearer on whose arm the king leaned said to the man of God, "Even if Yahweh opens the windows of heaven for it to rain wheat, how could this thing be?" Elisha answered, "You shall see it with your own eyes, but you shall not eat of it."
3. Four men were at the city gates, outside, at the other side of the wall. They were lepers. And on that day, they said to one another, "Shall we sit here until we die?
4. If we decide to enter the city, there we shall die of hunger. But if we stay here, we die as well. So let us go over to the camp of the Arameans. If they spare our lives, then we live; and if they kill us, then let us die!"
5. They arose as it was getting dark to go to the camp of the Arameans. But when they reached the camp, they found no one there.
6. The Lord had let the Arameans hear the noise of chariots and horses, the sound of a great army. And they had thought: "The king of Israel has sent money to the kings of the Hittites and Moshrites to come and attack us."
7. So they fled as it was getting dark to save themselves, abandoning their tents, their horses, and their asses, leaving the camp just as it was.
8. When these lepers reached the camp boundary, they went into a tent. They ate and drank; they took the silver, gold and clothes, and hid them there in the ground. They entered another tent and took whatever they found, and hid them in the same way.
9. Then they thought: "What we are doing is not good. Today is a day of good tidings, and if we keep silent until tomorrow, we shall be guilty. So let us go and tell this to the king's men."
10. Returning to the city, they called out to the city guards, saying, "We went to the camp of the Arameans but no one was there, not a trace of anyone, only horses and asses tied, and the tents just as they were left."
11. The guards cried out the news and it was told within the king's household.
12. The king arose in the night and said to his officials, "The Arameans know that we are hungry. They have left their camp and have hidden in the field, waiting for us to come out of the city that they may take us alive and then get into the city."
13. One of the officials answered, "Let some men take five of the remaining horses for, at any rate, these are also bound to die of hunger, as are all the people of this city. Dispatch them and see."
14. So they took two chariots and their horses, and the king sent the horsemen after the Arameans.
15. They went as far as the Jordan, and all the way was littered with clothes and equipment which the Arameans had thrown away in their flight. The messengers returned and told this to the king.
16. Then the people went out and plundered the camp of the Arameans. A measure of flour was sold for a piece of silver and a double measure of barley was also sold for a piece, as Elisha had said.
17. The king had appointed his shield bearer to keep watch at the city gates. But he was crushed right there by the crowd, so that he died,
18. just as Elisha had told him when the king had come down to see him. For when Elisha had said to the king, "Tomorrow at this hour, at the gate of Samaria, two measures of barley as well as a measure of flour shall be sold for a shekel,"
19. the shield bearer had said to the man of God, "Even if Yahweh opens the windows of heaven for it to rain down wheat, what you say will not happen." Then Elisha had told him, "You shall see it with your own eyes, but you shall not eat of it."
20. So it happened. The people ran over him and crushed him at the city gates, and there he died.