Imatges de pàgina

Moabites would produce that effect. This woman appears to have been wealthy, and to have wanted nothing more than she had.

16. The age of this woman is not mentioned. She probably was not old ; so that this miracle was not so great as that of the conception of Isaac.

22. She was not without hopes of the recovery of her son by means of the prophet; having, no doubt, heard of the recovery of the widow's fon by Elijah.

23. it is evident from this that it was customary to attend upon prophets, and probably the regular priests also, on the fabbaths and new moons, and this could only be for the purpose of religious exercises and instruction.

25. There was probably a school, or fociety, of prophets at Carmel, which was not far from Shunem.

26. She did not chuse to inform the servant of her business.

31. He prelumed too much, and his presumption was properly checked.

34. In this he imitated Elijah; and as the child had not been long dead, there might be fome doubt of the recovery being properly miraculous. But both the mo. ther and the historian evidently considered the child as having been actually dead. 38. It appears from this, that these fons of the

pro. phets formed a fociety, and lived all together, at least those of them that were not married.

39. Thefe are thought to have been the berries of the Coloquintida, which ref mble grapes, but are vio. lpntly purgative.

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:41. What was put into the pot had no natural powbt to change the quality of the noxious berries.

42. It is probable that many of the prophets, and thefe schools of them, were supported in some measure by the alms of the people.

44. This miracle is fimilar to one of our Saviour's afterwards, and must have appeared very aftonishing.

Ch. V. 5. From the credit that Naaman and the king of Syria gare to the account of this captive girl, it is evident that the neighbouring nations had a high idea of the power of the God of Ifrael, and a great refpe& for his prophets.

7. This conjecture was very natural.

12. He was offended both at the prophet's not attending upon him in perfon, and not curing him without putting him to any trouble.

15. He must have known that no real miracle like this had ever been wrought by any of the heathen gods.

17. This was probably for the purpose of building an altar to the God of Israel.

19. This was only a civil manner of dismisling him, without apswering the questions he had put to him.

22. There was probably a school of prophets in mount Ephraim, as well as in other places.

24. The antient versions make this a dark and privade place.

27. This was a proper punishment for his offence, and probably Naaman would hear of it,

Ch. VI.7. This may seem to be a miracle wrought for a triling purpose. But it had a benevolent object, and would serve to impress the minds of all the society

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with a sense of the presence and power of God, as well as a miracle of greater magnitude.

12. The fame of Elitha was, no doubt, very great through all Syria, in consequence of the cure of Naaman, as well as the report of his other miracles.

13. If he believed that the prophet could discover his moft secret councils, his propolal to apprehend him must have been very absurd. But the Jews, who be. lieved the miracles of Jesus, were not deterred by that from endeavouring to put him to death. Believing the power of the prophets not to be their own, or at their command ; and seeing that in other respects they did not differ from other men, they might think it possible to fecure their persons, and then treat them as they pleafed. Dothan was in the tribe of Manafleh, not far from Shechem 'or Samaria.

17. This would give him an idea that, tho' there was no visible appearance of affistance, they were perfeetly safe through the protection of an invisible provi, dence ; not that the chariots and horses he saw were actually employed in their favour.

18. This was only a temporary blindness, or confu. fion of vifion.

22. From this it appears not to have been the cuftom to kill even enemies in cold blood, but to make haves of them.

23. This act of generosity had its natural and pro

per effect.

24. Benhadad seems to have been a common naine, or title, for the kings of Syria, as tharaoh was of those of Egypt.


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25. It was, no doubt, vetches, or some course food, usually given to asses or fowls, that was so dear. Bo. chart has shewn that vetches were called dove's dung.

27, All his own stores were so exhausted that he could not give her any thing.

30. There are but few instances in history of persons being reduced by any famine to feed on human flesh, much less that of their own children ; yet even this was expressly foretold by Moses to be the case with the Ifraelites Another case of this kind occurred in the fiege of Jerufalem by Titus.

31. We have had several instances of rage expressed against the prophets for denouncing divine judgments, when it was most evident that they had no power to inflict them. But this is the natural efíect of the principle of association, in the minds of persons who are not given to reflection, and who are governed by paflion more than by reason

33. This is the language of rage and despair, like that of Job's wife, Curse God and die ; as if he had said, fuce the judgment is from the Lord, it is in vain to expect deliverance from him.

Ch VII. 1. In reply to the desponding language of the king, the prophet assures him that relief was at hand.

2. He would be properly punished for his incredulity. 3. Lopers were rot allowed to live in cities.

But tho' these were without the gates, and the place was lifeged, they appear not to have been molefied. Their


houses were pobably so near to the wall, that the enemy would not venture to come where they were.

6. This was a miracle of a peculiar kind, but it effectually answered the purpose. The remains of the Hittites were to the South of Palestine, and must have been in considerable numbers to have kings of their own. But Josephus has kings of the isles, so that he muit have had a reading different from that of our present copies, or those from which the antient verhons were made. Egypt must have been divided into several principalities at this time.

13. This small number of horses that were left, as well as the woman having killed her child, are proofs of the great distress to which the city had been reduce ed. The people must have had the most dreadful apprehensions of the cruelty of the enemy, not to have furrendered before they were brought to this extremity.

20. This extraordinary prediction was verified in a manner perfectly natural, and yet such as no perton would have imagined before hand.

Ch. VIII, 1. This famine, some Jews say, was that which is mentioned by Joel ; four years of it being caused by insects, which devoured all the fruits of the earth, and three more by want of rain.

4, As the miracles of Elisha were, no doubt, much talked of, it was natural for the king to get information concerning them, and no person was so well qualifica to give it him as Gehazi; and having been a facerer! them, he would not be disposed to magnify any

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