1. In the twenty-third year of Joash son of Ahaziah, king of Judah, Jehoahaz son of Jehu became king of Israel in Samaria. He reigned for seventeen years.

2. He did what is displeasing to Yahweh and copied the sin into which Jeroboam son of Nebat had led Israel; he did not give it up.

3. This aroused Yahweh's anger against the Israelites, and he delivered them without respite into the power of Hazael king of Aram and of Ben-Hadad son of Hazael.

4. Jehoahaz, however, tried to placate Yahweh, and Yahweh heard him, for he had seen the oppression which the king of Aram was inflicting on Israel.

5. Yahweh gave Israel a saviour who freed them from the grip of Aram, and the Israelites lived in their tents as in the past.

6. But they did not give up the sin into which Jeroboam had led Israel; they persisted in it, and even the sacred pole stayed standing in Samaria.

7. Of Jehoahaz's army Yahweh left only fifty horsemen, ten chariots and ten thousand foot soldiers. The king of Aram had destroyed them, making them like dust trampled under foot.

8. The rest of the history of Jehoahaz, his entire career, his prowess, is this not recorded in the Book of the Annals of the Kings of Israel?

9. Then Jehoahaz fell asleep with his ancestors, and was buried in Samaria; his son Joash succeeded him.

10. In the thirty-seventh year of Joash king of Judah, Jehoash son of Jehoahaz, became king of Israel in Samaria. He reigned for sixteen years.

11. He did what is displeasing to Yahweh, he did not give up the sin into which Jeroboam son of Nebat had led Israel; he persisted in it.

12. The rest of the history of Joash, his entire career, his prowess, how he waged war on Amaziah king of Judah, is this not recorded in the Book of the Annals of the Kings of Israel?

13. Then Joash fell asleep with his ancestors, and Jeroboam ascended his throne. Joash was buried in Samaria with the kings of Israel.

14. When Elisha had fallen ill of the illness of which he was to die, Joash king of Israel went down to him and shedding tears over him said, 'Father! Father! Chariot of Israel and its chargers!'

15. Elisha said to him, 'Bring bow and arrows,' and he sent for a bow and arrows.

16. Then Elisha said to the king, 'Draw the bow,' and he drew it. Elisha put his hands over the hands of the king,

17. then he said, 'Open the window towards the east,' and he opened it. Then Elisha said, 'Shoot!' And he shot. Elisha said, 'Arrow of victory over Aram! You will defeat Aram at Aphek-completely.'

18. Elisha said, 'Take the arrows,' and he took them. Then he said to the king, 'Strike the ground,' and he struck it three times, then stopped.

19. At this the man of God grew angry with him. 'You should have struck half a dozen times,' he said, 'and you would have beaten Aram completely; now you will beat Aram only three times.'

20. Elisha died and was buried. Bands of Moabites were making incursions into the country every year.

21. Some people happened to be carrying a man out for burial; at the sight of one of these bands, they flung the man into the tomb of Elisha and made off. The man had no sooner touched the bones of Elisha than he came to life and stood up on his feet.

22. Hazael king of Aram had oppressed the Israelites throughout the lifetime of Jehoahaz,

23. but Yahweh was kind and took pity on them. Because of the covenant which he had made with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, he relented towards them; he had no wish to destroy them, he did not cast them out of his presence.

24. Hazael king of Aram died, and his son Ben-Hadad succeeded him.

25. From Ben-Hadad son of Hazael, Jehoash son of Jehoahaz recaptured the towns which Hazael had seized from his father Jehoahaz by force of arms. Joash defeated him three times and recovered the Israelite towns.



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