2 Kings 4:42-44

2 Kings 4:42-44
Ordinary B35


42 A manA cameB from Baal-shalishah,C

Notes on verse 42a

A “man” = ish. Perhaps from enosh (human, humankind, mortal); from anash (to be weak, sick, or frail). This is man, husband, another, or humankind.
B “came” = bo. This is to enter, come in, advance, fulfill, bring offerings, enter to worship, attack. It can also have a sexual connotation.
C “Baal-shalishah” = Baal Shalishah. 1x in OT. From Baal (Baal, used for several Canaanite gods; literally, “lord”); {from the same as baal (owner, master, husband); from baal (to marry, have dominion over, to master)}} + shalishah (Shalishah; a place meaning “trebled land,” “three,” “a third part,” “triangular”); {from the same as shalosh (three, fork, three times)}. This is Baal-shalishah, a place meaning “Lord of Shalishah,” “Having a Third,” or “Lord of Three.” See https://www.abarim-publications.com/Meaning/Baal-shalishah.html

bringingD foodE from the first fruitsF to the man of God:G twentyH loavesI of barleyJ

Notes on verse 42b

D “bringing” = bo. Same as “came” in v42. See note B above.
E “food” = lechem. From lacham (to eat, feed on). This is bread, food, loaf. It can refer to food more generally for people or for animals.
F “first fruits” = bikkurim. 18x in OT. From bakar (to bear fruit, be firstborn, firstling, that which opens the womb, give the birthright to). This is first fruits – fruit that ripens earliest.
G “God” = Elohim.
H “twenty” = esrim. From the same as eser (ten, tenth). This is twenty or twentieth.
I “loaves” = lechem. Same as “food” in v42. See note E above.
J “barley” = seorah. From the same as sear (hair, hairy, rough); perhaps from sa’ar (to storm, scattered by a storm, blow away, rage, storm tossed; this is to toss in a literal or figurative sense). This is barley, perhaps as hairy.

and fresh ears of grainK in his sack.L Elisha said, “GiveM it to the peopleN and let them eat.”O 

Notes on verse 42c

K “fresh ears of grain” = karmel. 15x in OT. From the same as kerem (vineyard, garden, vines, or a vintage). This is a fertile field, garden, new growth, fruit, grain. It can be an orchard or park as well as the produce.
L “sack” = tsiqqalon. 1x in OT. This is a sack, husk, or garment.
M “give” = natan. This is to give, put, set, offer. It is to give literally or figuratively.
N “people” = am. From amam (to darken, hide, associate; creating shadows by huddling together). This is people or nation. It can be used specifically for a tribe, collectively of troops or armies, or figuratively to refer to a flock of animals.
O “eat” = akal. This is to eat, devour, burn up, or otherwise consume. It can be eating in a literal or figurative sense.

43 But his servantP said, “How can I setQ this beforeR a hundred people?”S

Notes on verse 43a

P “servant” = sharath. This is ministering, serving, or waiting on. It can refer to one offering service as a worshipper or one serving as a servant.
Q “set” = natan. Same as “give” in v42. See note M above.
R “before” = paneh. From panah (to turn, face, appear). This is face in a literal or figurative sense. It could be face, presence, anger, respect. It can also be used of God to indicate divine favor or presence.
S “people” = ish. Literally “men.” Same as “man” in v42. See note A above.

So he repeated, “Give it to the peopleT and let them eat, for thus says the Lord,U ‘They shall eat and have some left.’”V 44 He set it beforeW them, they ate, and had some left, according to the wordX of the Lord.

Notes on verses 43b-44

T “people” = am. Same as “people” in v42. See note N above.
U “Lord” = YHVH. From havah (to be, become) or hayah (to come to pass, become, be). This is the name of the God of Israel, the self-existent and eternal one, the tetragrammaton. This pronunciation has been lost to time so “Lord” is generally used in its place.
V “have…left” = yathar. This is to jut over, remain behind, preserve, to excel. It can be to leave or to be in abundance.
W “before” = paneh. Same as “before” in v43. See note R above.
X “word” = dabar. From dabar (to speak, declare, discuss). This is speech, a word, a matter, an affair, charge, command, message, promise, purpose, report, request. It is a word, which implies things that are spoken of in a wide sense.

Image credit: Mosaic from the Eliyahu Hanavi Cathedral in Haifa, Israel.

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