Elisha and the Lads of Bethel
originally posted by: rockpaperhammock
a reply to: lonesomerimbaud
but did he create the face in the wood...even if you argue god created the wood or put things in place..he didnt create the face...so he didnt create
everything...and if the father of lies created all the evil then god still didnt create everything because the father of lies or whatever you are
saying created it...
if you read the bible there are so many flaws with god that it is a joke at best...not saying god doesn't exist but i can't say the bible is perfect
at all.. maybe man #ed it up but the bible is insane....god seems to be a fan of murdering children if you beleive in everythign that is in the
2 Kings 2:23-24New International Version (NIV)
Elisha Is Jeered
23 From there Elisha went up to Bethel. As he was walking along the road, some boys came out of the town and jeered at him. “Get out of here,
baldy!” they said. “Get out of here, baldy!” 24 He turned around, looked at them and called down a curse on them in the name of the Lord. Then
two bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the boys.
Lets say your god did this...I want you to think about something...if god is all powerful...could he have not just let them die in their sleep? No he
specifically chose a way to horrifically murder these children by two bears. If they really needed to be killed why not just say "die" and then
they all die...nope like a sadistic freak he enjoyed the good show 2 bears gave more than using his power in a less horrific way.
This is why the bible is garbage.
"In the book of 2 Kings, there is an intriguing narrative that has generated considerable controversy. Concerning the prophet Elisha, the text reads
And he went up from thence unto Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said
unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head. And he turned back, and looked on them, and cursed them in the name of the Lord. And there
came forth two she bears out of the wood, and tare forty and two children of them (2 Kings 2:23-24).
Atheists have appealed to this incident in an attempt to involve the Bible in moral difficulty. A careful consideration of the facts, however, will
dissolve the problem.
First, the translation, “there came forth little children out of the city” (KJV) is an unfortunate rendition (cf. “young lads”—ASV, or
“youths”—NIV, NKJV). The Hebrew word rendered “children” derives from na’ar—used 235 times in the Old Testament. Na’ar is a very broad
root word, and can have reference to anyone from a newborn child to an adult. Further, the Hebrew word rendered “little” comes from qatan, and
generally means young or small. In commenting on this term in 2 Kings 2:23, the Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament remarked:
Elisha being taunted (cf. qalas, qarah) by young lads (perhaps teen-age ruffians) (II Kgs 2:23) who as members of covenant families ought to have been
taught God’s law whereby cursing his servant was tantamount to cursing him and rightly punishable by death (qalal) (Harris, et al., 1980, 2:795).
Obviously, therefore, the immediate context in which na’ar is used will determine the maturity of the subject so designated.
Second, the young men of Bethel mocked Elisha. The Hebrew word qalas means to scoff at, ridicule, or scorn. The term does not suggest innocent
conduct. Note the Lord’s comment elsewhere: “They mocked the messengers of God, and despised his words, and scoffed at his prophets, until the
wrath of Jehovah arose against his people, till there was no remedy” (2 Chronicles 36:16).
Too, the expression, “Go up...Go up,” is held by many scholars to reflect the wish of these young men that the prophet go ahead and ascend (as did
Elijah—2 Kings 2:11), i.e., leave the Earth, that they might be rid of him! Also, the taunt, “thou bald head,” was likely a reproach. Old
Testament scholar John Whitcomb has suggested that this was an expression “of extreme contempt. They were pronouncing a divine curse upon him, for
which baldness was often the outward sign (cf. Isaiah 3:17a,24)” (1971, p. 68).
Third, when it is said that Elisha “cursed them,” there is no implication of profanity (as our modern word suggests), nor was this a venting of
passion for personal revenge. Holy men of God sometimes were empowered with divine authority to pronounce an impending judgment upon rebellious
persons (cf. Genesis 9:25, 49:7, Deuteronomy 27:15ff., and Joshua 6:26). Christ uttered a curse upon the barren fig tree (Mark 11:21) as an object
lesson of the doom that was to be visited upon Jerusalem. Also, it is stated clearly that Elisha’s curse upon them was “in the name of the
Lord,” meaning by “divine appointment, inspiration, authority” (see Orr, 1956, 4:2112).
Fourth, the tragedy that befell these young men obviously was of divine design. Elisha, as a mere man, would have no power to call forth wild animals
out of the woods merely at his bidding. But the sovereignty of Jehovah over the animal kingdom frequently is affirmed in the Scriptures. God sent
fiery serpents to bite the Israelites (Numbers 21:6); the Lord slew a disobedient young prophet by means of a lion (1 Kings 13:24ff.); yet, He shut
the lions’ mouths to protect Daniel (Daniel 6:22). He prepared a great fish to swallow Jonah (Jonah 1:17), and guided one to Peter’s hook (Matthew
17:24ff.). Clearly, therefore, it was Jehovah who brought those bears out of the forest.
Additionally, if, when the divine record says that the bears “tare” the lads, it means they were killed (and not all scholars are sure that death
is indicated), then it was a divine punishment. As Alfred Edersheim has written: “[I]t should be noticed that it was not Elisha who slew those
forty-two youths, but the Lord in His Providence, just as it had been Jehovah, not the prophet, who had healed the waters of Jericho” (n.d.,
It is the general view of conservative Bible scholars that the young men of Bethel likely were idolaters whose reproaches upon Elisha were expressions
of contempt for his prophetic office, and thus, ultimately directed at the God Whom he served. Thus, their punishment was a divine judgment intended
to serve as a dramatic example in horribly wicked times."
There you go, that is one answer.