Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

2 Kings 20:7

Then Isaiah said, "Take a cake of figs." And they took and laid it on the boil, and he recovered.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Blessing;   Boil;   Disease;   Faith;   Fig;   Hezekiah;   Isaiah;   Prayer;   Rulers;   Thompson Chain Reference - Agriculture-Horticulture;   Boils;   Disease;   Diseases;   Figs;   Fruit, Natural;   Health-Disease;   Miracles;   Prevention and Cure of Diseases;   Remedies;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Diseases;   Fig-Tree, the;   Miracles Wrought through Servants of God;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Fig;   Miracle;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Disease;   Healing;   Hezekiah;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Heal, Health;   Miracle;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Boil;   Fig;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Boil;   Sore;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Fig;   Food;   Isaiah, Book of;   Israel;   Medicine;   Plaister, Plaster;   Text, Versions, and Languages of Ot;   Writing;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Boil;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Hezekiah;   Manasseh;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Hezekiah;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Urim and Thummim;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Kingdom of Judah;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Dial of Ahaz, the;   Fig;   Food;   Heal;   Hosea;   Text of the Old Testament;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Fig and Fig-Tree;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Take a lump of figs - and laid it on the boil - We cannot exactly say in what Hezekiah's malady consisted. שחין shechin signifies any inflammatory tumour, boil, abscess, etc. The versions translate it sore, wound, and such like. Some think it was a pleurisy; others, that it was the plague; others, the elephantiasis; and others, that it was a quinsey. A poultice of figs might be very proper to maturate a boil, or to discuss any obstinate inflammatory swelling. This Pliny remarks, Omnibus quae maturanda ant discutienda sunt imponuntur. But we cannot pronounce on the propriety of the application, unless we were certain of the nature of the malady. This, however was the natural means which God chose to bless to the recovery of Hezekiah's health; and without this interposition he must have died.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on 2 Kings 20:7". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/2-kings-20.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

A lump of figs - The usual remedy in the East, even at the present day, for ordinary boils. But such a remedy would not naturally cure the dangerous tumor or carbuncle from which Hezekiah suffered. Thus the means used in this miracle were means having a tendency toward the result performed by them, but insufficient of themselves to produce that result (compare 2 Kings 4:34 note).

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 2 Kings 20:7". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/2-kings-20.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And Isaiah said, take a lump of figs,.... Not moist figs, but a cake of dried figs, as the word used signifies, and so the less likely to have any effect in curing the boil:

and they took, and laid it on the boil, and he recovered; made a plaster of it, and laid it on the ulcer, and it was healed. Physicians observeF21Scheuchzer. Physic. Sacr. vol. 3. p. 620. Vid. Levin. Lemnii Herb. Bibl. Explicat. c. 19. p. 60. , that as such like inflammations consist in a painful extension of the fibres by the hinderance of the circulation of the blood, through the extreme little arteries, which may be mitigated, or dissipated, or ripened, by such things as are emollient and loosening, so consequently by figs; and, in a time of pestilence, figs beaten together with butter and treacle have been applied to plague of boils with great success; yet these figs being only a cake of dry figs, and, the boil not only malignant, but deadly, and the cure so suddenly performed, show that this was done not in a natural, but in a supernatural way, though means were directed to be made use of.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 20:7". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/2-kings-20.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

And Isaiah said, Take a f lump of figs. And they took and laid [it] on the boil, and he recovered.

(f) He declares that though God can heal without other medicines, he will not have these inferior means contemned.
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Bibliographical Information
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on 2 Kings 20:7". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/2-kings-20.html. 1599-1645.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

2 Kings 20:7 And Isaiah said, Take a lump of figs. And they took and laid [it] on the boil, and he recovered.

Ver. 7. Take a lump of figs.] This poultice was fit enough for the carbuncle, but yet could never have cured him so soon without a miracle. See on 2 Kings 20:1.

And he recovered.] Non ex facultate ficuum, sed ex Dei verbo, saith Junius: By a supernatural virtue added to the figs, which else could not have wrought the cure.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 20:7". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/2-kings-20.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Take a lump of figs: though the deliverance was certainly promised, yet means must be used, and those suitable; for this hath naturally a power of ripening and softening boils or sores, though that power was altogether insufficient to produce so sudden and so complete a cure. The boil seems to have been a plague-sore.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 2 Kings 20:7". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/2-kings-20.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

7.A lump of figs — Figs pressed together into a mass or poultice. The use of figs in the cure of boils or ulcers is attested by several ancient writers. Dioscorides says, they “disperse tumors,” and Pliny, they “open ulcers.”

The boil שׁחין, a burning sore, an in flamed ulcer. In Hezekiah’s case, it was very probably a carbuncle.

He recovered — That is, at the end of three days; but previous to his recovery he asked and received a marvellous sign of Divine interposition. See 2 Kings 20:8-11. In Isaiah 38:9-20, we have a psalm of thanksgiving which Hezekiah sang to the Lord at his recovery.

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 2 Kings 20:7". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/2-kings-20.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

2 Kings 20:7. Take a lump of figs — Though the deliverance was certainly promised, yet means must be used, and those suitable. The figs would help to ripen the bile, and bring it to a head, that the matter of the disease might be discharged that way. This means, however, would have been altogether insufficient of itself to effect so sudden and complete a cure, without the co-operation of the divine power, to which the king’s restoration to health is chiefly to be ascribed.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on 2 Kings 20:7". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/2-kings-20.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Figs; dried. They are very serviceable in various disorders of the throat, to mullify, &c. (Pliny, [Natural History?] xxiii. 3.) (Aldrov. ii.) --- St. Jerome (in Isaias xxxviii.) acknowledges that they might help to removed the disorder. Grotius is of a contrary opinion; (Calmet) and this would enhance the miracle. See Vales. xxxix. (Menochius) --- At any rate, the discovery of this remedy to the prophet, and its sudden efficacy, were miraculous. (Calmet)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 2 Kings 20:7". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/2-kings-20.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

lump = cake, or plaister.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 2 Kings 20:7". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/2-kings-20.html. 1909-1922.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And Isaiah said, Take a lump of figs. And they took and laid it on the boil, and he recovered.
Take a lump
2:20-22; 4:41; Isaiah 38:21
the boil
The word shechin, from the Arabic sachana, to be hot, signifies an inflammatory tumour, or burning boil; and some think that Hezekiah's malady was a pleurisy; others, that it was the plague; and others, the elephantiasis, a species of leprosy, as one of the Hexapla versions renders in Job 2:7. A poultice of figs might be very proper to maturate a boil, or dismiss any obstinate inflammatory swelling; but we need not discuss its propriety in this case, because it was as much the means which God chose to bless for his recovery, as the clay which Christ moistened to anoint the eyes of the blind man; for in both cases, without Divine interposition the cure could not have been effected.
Reciprocal: Leviticus 13:18 - a boil;  2 Kings 20:5 - I will heal;  Hebrews 11:34 - out of;  Revelation 13:14 - they

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 2 Kings 20:7". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/2-kings-20.html.