וַיְהִי בְּהַעֲלוֹת יְהוָה אֶת־אֵלִיָּהוּ בַּסְעָרָה הַשָּׁמָיִם וַיֵּלֶךְ אֵלִיָּהוּ וֶאֱלִישָׁע מִן־הַגִּלְגָּל׃ 2:1
2Kin. 2:1 And it was because of the Lord taking up Elijah in a whirlwind of heaven that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.
וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלִיָּהוּ אֶל־אֱלִישָׁע שֵׁב־נָא פֹה כִּי יְהוָה שְׁלָחַנִי עַד־בֵּית־אֵל וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלִישָׁע חַי־יְהוָה 2:2 וְחֵי־נַפְשְׁךָ אִם־אֶעֶזְבֶךָּ וַיֵּרְדוּ בֵּית־אֵל׃
2Kin. 2:2 And Elijah said to Elisha, “Please remain here, for the Lord has sent me as far as Beth-el.” And Elisha said, “As the Lord lives and as your soul lives, I will not leave you.” So they went down to Beth-el.
וַיֵּצְאוּ בְנֵי־הַנְּבִיאִים אֲשֶׁר־בֵּית־אֵל אֶל־אֱלִישָׁע וַיֹּאמְרוּ אֵלָיו הֲיָדַעְתָּ כִּי הַיּוֹם יְהוָה לֹקֵחַ אֶת־אֲדֹנֶיךָ 2:3 מֵעַל רֹאשֶׁךָ וַיֹּאמֶר גַּם־אֲנִי יָדַעְתִּי הֶחֱשׁוּ׃
2Kin. 2:3 And the sons of the prophets who were of Beth-el came forth to Elisha and they said to him, “Do you know that today the Lord is taking your master from your lead?” And he said, “Yes, I know. Keep silent.”
וַיֹּאמֶר לוֹ אֵלִיָּהוּ אֱלִישָׁע שֵׁב־נָא פֹה כִּי יְהוָה שְׁלָחַנִי יְרִיחוֹ וַיֹּאמֶר חַי־יְהוָה וְחֵי־נַפְשְׁךָ אִם־אֶעֶזְבֶךָּ 2:4 וַיָּבֹאוּ יְרִיחוֹ׃
2Kin. 2:4 And Elijah said to him, “Elisha, please remain here, for the Lord is sending me to Jericho.” And he said, “As the Lord lives and as your soul lives, I will not leave you.” So they came to Jericho.
וַיִּגְּשׁוּ בְנֵי־הַנְּבִיאִים אֲשֶׁר־בִּירִיחוֹ אֶל־אֱלִישָׁע וַיֹּאמְרוּ אֵלָיו הֲיָדַעְתָּ כִּי הַיּוֹם יְהוָה לֹקֵחַ אֶת־אֲדֹנֶיךָ 2:5 מֵעַל רֹאשֶׁךָ וַיֹּאמֶר גַּם־אֲנִי יָדַעְתִּי הֶחֱשׁוּ׃
2Kin. 2:5 And the sons of the prophets who were in Jericho came near to Elisha, and they said to him, “Do you know that today the Lord is taking your master from leading you?” And he said, “Yes, I know. Keep silent.”
וַיֹּאמֶר לוֹ אֵלִיָּהוּ שֵׁב־נָא פֹה כִּי יְהוָה שְׁלָחַנִי הַיַּרְדֵּנָה וַיֹּאמֶר חַי־יְהוָה וְחֵי־נַפְשְׁךָ אִם־אֶעֶזְבֶךָּ וַיֵּלְכוּ 2:6 שְׁנֵיהֶם׃
2Kin. 2:6 And Elijah said to him, “Please stay here, for the Lord is sending me to the Jordan.” And he said, “As the Lord lives and as your soul lives, I will not leave you.” And the two of them went.
וַחֲמִשִּׁים אִישׁ מִבְּנֵי הַנְּבִיאִים הָלְכוּ וַיַּעַמְדוּ מִנֶּגֶד מֵרָחוֹק וּשְׁנֵיהֶם עָמְדוּ עַל־הַיַּרְדֵּן׃ 2:7
2Kin. 2:7 And fifty men from the sons of the prophets went, and they stood opposite from afar, and the two of them stood by the Jordan.
וַיִּקַּח אֵלִיָּהוּ אֶת־אַדַּרְתּוֹ וַיִּגְלֹם וַיַּכֶּה אֶת־הַמַּיִם וַיֵּחָצוּ הֵנָּה וָהֵנָּה וַיַּעַבְרוּ שְׁנֵיהֶם בֶּחָרָבָה׃ 2:8
2Kin. 2:8 And Elijah took his mantle and wrapped together and struck the water, and they divided on this side and on that side, and the two of them crossed on dry ground.
וַיְהִי כְעָבְרָם וְאֵלִיָּהוּ אָמַר אֶל־אֱלִישָׁע שְׁאַל מָה אֶעֱשֶׂה־לָּךְ בְּטֶרֶם אֶלָּקַח מֵעִמָּךְ וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלִישָׁע 2:9 וִיהִי־נָא פִּי־שְׁנַיִם בְּרוּחֲךָ אֵלָי׃
2Kin. 2:9 And it was after their crossing that Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask what I should do for you while I am not yet taken from you.” And Elisha said, “Then please let a double portion of your spirit come to me.”
וַיֹּאמֶר הִקְשִׁיתָ לִשְׁאוֹל אִם־תִּרְאֶה אֹתִי לֻקָּח מֵאִתָּךְ יְהִי־לְךָ כֵן וְאִם־אַיִן לֹא יִהְיֶה׃ 2:10
2Kin. 2:10 And he said, “You have asked a hard thing to obtain. If you see me taken from you, it will be so, but if not, it shall not be.”
וַיְהִי הֵמָּה הֹלְכִים הָלוֹךְ וְדַבֵּר וְהִנֵּה רֶכֶב־אֵשׁ וְסוּסֵי אֵשׁ וַיַּפְרִדוּ בֵּין שְׁנֵיהֶם וַיַּעַל אֵלִיָּהוּ בַּסְּעָרָה 2:11 הַשָּׁמָיִם׃
2Kin. 2:11 And it was, they were walking, he went on and talked, when behold, a chariot of fire and horses of fire, and they broke through between the two of them, and Elijah went up in a whirlwind of heaven.
וֶאֱלִישָׁע רֹאֶה וְהוּא מְצַעֵק אָבִי אָבִי רֶכֶב יִשְׂרָאֵל וּפָרָשָׁיו וְלֹא רָאָהוּ עוֹד וַיַּחֲזֵק בִּבְגָדָיו וַיִּקְרָעֵם 2:12 לִשְׁנַיִם קְרָעִים׃
2Kin. 2:12 And Elisha looked while he was proclaiming, “My father, my father, the chariot of Israel and its horses!” And he did not see it any more. Then he took hold of his clothes and tore them to two pieces.
וַיָּרֶם אֶת־אַדֶּרֶת אֵלִיָּהוּ אֲשֶׁר נָפְלָה מֵעָלָיו וַיָּשָׁב וַיַּעֲמֹד עַל־שְׂפַת הַיַּרְדֵּן׃ 2:13
2Kin. 2:13 Then he lifted the mantle of Elijah, which had fallen from him, and went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan.
וַיִּקַּח אֶת־אַדֶּרֶת אֵלִיָּהוּ אֲשֶׁר־נָפְלָה מֵעָלָיו וַיַּכֶּה אֶת־הַמַּיִם וַיֹּאמַר אַיֵּה יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵי אֵלִיָּהוּ אַף־הוּא 2:14 וַיַּכֶּה אֶת־הַמַּיִם וַיֵּחָצוּ הֵנָּה וָהֵנָּה וַיַּעֲבֹר אֱלִישָׁע׃
2Kin. 2:14 Then he took the mantle of Elijah, which had fallen from him, and struck the water as he said, “Where the Lord, God of Elijah, is, he is also.” When he struck the waters, then they divided to this side and that side, and Elisha crossed.
וַיִּרְאֻהוּ בְנֵי־הַנְּבִיאִים אֲשֶׁר־בִּירִיחוֹ מִנֶּגֶד וַיֹּאמְרוּ נָחָה רוּחַ אֵלִיָּהוּ עַל־אֱלִישָׁע וַיָּבֹאוּ לִקְרָאתוֹ 2:15 וַיִּשְׁתַּחֲווּ־לוֹ אָרְצָה׃
2Kin. 2:15 And the sons of the prophets who were in Jericho saw him from far off, and they said, “The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha.” And they came to meet him, and they bowed low to him to the ground.
וַיֹּאמְרוּ אֵלָיו הִנֵּה־נָא יֵשׁ־אֶת־עֲבָדֶיךָ חֲמִשִּׁים אֲנָשִׁים בְּנֵי־חַיִל יֵלְכוּ נָא וִיבַקְשׁוּ אֶת־אֲדֹנֶיךָ 2:16
פֶּן־נְשָׂאוֹ רוּחַ יְהוָה וַיַּשְׁלִכֵהוּ בְּאַחַד הֶהָרִים אוֹ בְּאַחַת (הַגְּיָאוֹת) [הַגֵּאָיוֹת] וַיא מֶר לֹא תִשְׁלָחוּ׃
2Kin. 2:16 And they said to him, “Behold, now, here are your servants, fifty men strong. Let them go, please, and seek your master, lest the spirit of the Lord has carried him away and has deposited him on one of the mountains or in one of the valleys.” And he said, “You should not send.”
The word in parentheses, translated as the valleys, is considered to have a misplaced yad. Although I see this spelling as an acceptable alternative, the spelling within the brackets appears three times in the bible, while the spelling in the parentheses is only in this one place. So I reluctantly go along with the “corrected” position of the yad in the brackets.
וַיִּפְצְרוּ־בוֹ עַד־בֹּשׁ וַיֹּאמֶר שְׁלָחוּ וַיִּשְׁלְחוּ חֲמִשִּׁים אִישׁ וַיְבַקְשׁוּ שְׁלֹשָׁה־יָמִים וְלֹא מְצָאֻהוּ׃ 2:17
2Kin. 2:17 But they urged him on until he was ashamed, so he said, Send!” Then they sent the fifty men and they searched three days but did not find him.
וַיָּשֻׁבוּ אֵלָיו וְהוּא יֹשֵׁב בִּירִיחוֹ וַיֹּאמֶר אֲלֵהֶם הֲלוֹא־אָמַרְתִּי אֲלֵיכֶם אַל־תֵּלֵכוּ׃ 2:18
2Kin. 2:18 And they returned to him, as he had stayed in Jericho, and he said to them, “Did I not say to you not to go?”
וַיֹּאמְרוּ אַנְשֵׁי הָעִיר אֶל־אֱלִישָׁע הִנֵּה־נָא מוֹשַׁב הָעִיר טוֹב כַּאֲשֶׁר אֲדֹנִי רֹאֶה וְהַמַּיִם רָעִים וְהָאָרֶץ 2:19 מְשַׁכָּלֶת׃
2Kin. 2:19 Then the men of the city said to Elisha, “Behold now, the location of the city is pleasant as my lord sees, but the water is so bad that the land is barren.”
וַיֹּאמֶר קְחוּ־לִי צְלֹחִית חֲדָשָׁה וְשִׂימוּ שָׁם מֶלַח וַיִּקְחוּ אֵלָיו׃ 2:20
2Kin. 2:20 And he said, “Bring to me a new cruse and put salt in there.” And they brought to him.
וַיֵּצֵא אֶל־מוֹצָא הַמַּיִם וַיַּשְׁלֶךְ־שָׁם מֶלַח וַיֹּאמֶר כֹּה־אָמַר יְהוָה רִפִּאתִי לַמַּיִם הָאֵלֶּה לֹא־יִהְיֶה מִשָּׁם 2:21 עוֹד מָוֶת וּמְשַׁכָּלֶת׃
2Kin. 2:21 And he went out to the spring of water and cast the salt in there, and said, “Thus says the Lord: ‘I have been a physician to these waters. There shall be no more death or barrenness from there.’”
וַיֵּרָפוּ הַמַּיִם עַד הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה כִּדְבַר אֱלִישָׁע אֲשֶׁר דִּבֵּר׃ 2:22
2Kin. 2:22 And the waters became healed until this day, as the word of Elisha was what he had spoken.
וַיַּעַל מִשָּׁם בֵּית־אֵל וְהוּא עֹלֶה בַדֶּרֶךְ וּנְעָרִים קְטַנִּים יָצְאוּ מִן־הָעִיר וַיִּתְקַלְּסוּ־בוֹ וַיֹּאמְרוּ לוֹ עֲלֵה 2:23 קֵרֵחַ עֲלֵה קֵרֵח׃ַ
2Kin. 2:23 And he went up from there to Beth-el. And he was going up on the way when young lads came forth from the city, and they ridiculed him and said to him, “Go up, baldy, go up, baldy!”
וַיִּפֶן אַחֲרָיו וַיִּרְאֵם וַיְקַלְלֵם בְּשֵׁם יְהוָה וַתֵּצֶאנָה שְׁתַּיִם דֻּבִּים מִן־הַיַּעַר וַתְּבַקַּעְנָה מֵהֶם אַרְבָּעִים 2:24 וּשְׁנֵי יְלָדִים׃
2Kin. 2:24 And he turned behind him and saw them, and he cursed them in the name of the Lord. Then two she-bears came forth from the forest and tore forty-two boys from them.
וַיֵּלֶךְ מִשָּׁם אֶל־הַר הַכַּרְמֶל וּמִשָּׁם שָׁב שֹׁמְרוֹן׃ 2:25
2Kin. 2:25 And he went from there to Mount Carmel, and from there returned to Samaria.
The narrative of Elijah’s miraculous exploits is so remarkable that it has inspired people to conjecture that he was an extraterrestrial of a highly advanced civilization. Certainly the description of his going up to heaven with a fiery chariot seems to lend itself to that explanation. I have no serious problem with that interpretation, except that it ignores all the other miracles described everywhere in the bible. Could they all have been the work of members of an alien race? What would this mean for the authenticity and accuracy of the bible? What would it mean for the existence of the Lord? Is the Lord an extraterrestrial (in the scientific sense of the word)? If so, what happens to faith in our God, the Lord of Israel and the world? Of course, no one can be certain of the “true” answer. We are each given a choice: To believe or not to believe. As for me, I choose to believe. God, the almighty Creator of the universe, is real, and I will serve Him with love and reverence all my life.
[Return to 1&2Kings Chapters] [Prev.: 2Kin. 1] [Next: 2Kin. 3]