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Elisha heals Naaman, knows about Gehazi’s greed, floats an axe head, forsees the outcome of yet another siege of Samaria by Ben-had (II) and Hazael’s betrayal: 2 Kings 5−8:15

Most people, psychopaths aside, would be alarmed if a prophet of the Lord started weeping because they would commit atrocities like this:

2 Kings 8:12 I know the terrible things you will do to the people of Israel. You will burn their fortified cities, kill their young men with the sword, dash their little children to the ground, and rip open their pregnant women!

But not Hazael, an officer of the King of Aram. When Elisha explained his tears, Hazael’s response seemed to be more one of surprised excitement:

2 Kings 8:13 How could a nobody like me ever accomplish such great things?

When Elisha told Hazael it would happen because he would become the king of Aram, Hazael offered no protest.

2 Kings 8:15 But the next day Hazael took a blanket, soaked it in water, and held it over the king’s face until he died. Then Hazael became the next king of Aram.

Students of English literature might be thinking of Macbeth about now, but Hazael fared much better. He ruled for 46 brutal years.

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