Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

2 Kings 8:4

Now the king was talking with Gehazi, the servant of the man of God, saying, "Please relate to me all the great things that Elisha has done."
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Elisha;   Gehazi;   Joram;   Judge;   King;   Land;   Property;   Thompson Chain Reference - Gehazi;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Gehazi;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Shunem;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Elisha;   Gehazi;   Jehoram;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Court Systems;   Gehazi;   Kings, 1 and 2;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Gehazi;   Poverty;   Shunem;   Slave, Slavery;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Gehazi ;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Ramothgilead;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Elisha;   Gehazi;   Smith Bible Dictionary - Geha'zi;   Jeho'ram;  
Encyclopedias:
Condensed Biblical Cyclopedia - Kingdom of Israel;   International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Daniel, Book of;   Gehazi;   Relationships, Family;   Shunammite;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

The king talked with Gehazi - This is supposed to have happened before the cleansing of Naaman, for is it likely that the king would hold conversation with a leprous man; or that, knowing Gehazi had been dismissed with the highest disgrace from the prophet's service, he could hold any conversation with him concerning his late master, relative to whom he could not expect him to give either a true or impartial account?

Some think that this conversation might have taken place after Gehazi became leprous; the king having an insatiable curiosity to know the private history of a man who had done such astonishing things: and from whom could he get this information, except from the prophet's own confidential servant? It agrees better with the chronology to consider what is here related as having taken place after the cure of Naaman. As to the circumstance of Gehazi's disease, he might overlook that, and converse with him, keeping at a reasonable distance, as nothing but actual contact could defile.

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Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/2-kings-8.html. 1832.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And the king talked with Gehazi the servant of the man of God,.... Elisha's servant, just at the same time the woman made her application to him; so that this was before he was dismissed from the service of the prophet, and consequently before the affair of Naaman's cure, and so before the siege of Samaria:

saying, tell me, I pray thee, all the great things that Elisha hath done; the miracles he wrought, as the dividing of the waters of Jordan, and healing those near Jericho; the affair of procuring water for the armies of the three kings in Edom he needed not to relate, since Jehoram was an eyewitness thereof; the next was the multiplying the widow's cruse of oil, when he in course came to those that were done for the Shunammite woman.

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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 8:4". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/2-kings-8.html. 1999.

Keil & Delitzsch Old Testament Commentary

And just at that time the king was asking Gehazi to relate to him the great things that Elisha had done; and among these he was giving an account of the restoration of the Shunammite's son to life.

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The Keil & Delitzsch Old Testament Commentary is a derivative of a public domain electronic edition.
Bibliographical Information
Keil, Carl Friedrich & Delitzsch, Franz. "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/kdo/2-kings-8.html. 1854-1889.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

And the king talked with Gehazi the servant of the man of God, saying, Tell me, I pray thee, all the great things that Elisha hath done.

Gehazi the servant — Formerly his servant. The law did not forbid conversing with lepers, but only dwelling with them.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Wesley, John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/2-kings-8.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

2 Kings 8:4 And the king talked with Gehazi the servant of the man of God, saying, Tell me, I pray thee, all the great things that Elisha hath done.

Ver. 4. And the king talked with Gehazi.] Though a leper, as he might: the leper was only to dwell alone without the camp. [Leviticus 13:46] Besides, Gehazi might by this time be upon his true repentance, which some think may be evinced and gathered from this text, and perhaps his leprosy had cleansed him, his white forehead made him a white soul, cleansed from his leprosy.

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Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/2-kings-8.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Quest. How could the king speak with Gehazi, who was a leper?

Answ. Either the king might speak with him at a convenient distance, it being usual for others to discourse with lepers, as 2 Kings 7:8 Matthew 8:2 Luke 17:12; or his leprosy might be of that sort which was not infectious; or, if his leprosy was such as made him yet to be unclean, the king’s great curiosity might easily prevail with him to break a ceremonial law, who made no scruple of violating God’s moral law.

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Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/2-kings-8.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

4.The king talked with Gehazi — Many of the best expositors suppose this conversation took place before Gehazi became leprous, and therefore before the cleansing of Naaman. This is very probable, for it is not likely that the king would talk much with a leper, and we have already observed that the chronology of Jehoram’s reign is uncertain and obscure. See note at the beginning of chap. 3. But it must not be denied that this talk with Gehazi might have occurred after the latter became leprous. Though a leper, and no longer in the service of his old master, he might still have been known and spoken of as the servant of the man of God, and the king’s insatiable curiosity to learn the private history of Elisha might have led him to hold a conversation with a leper. The supposition of some divines, that Gehazi repented and had his curse of leprosy revoked, is an unfounded conjecture, destitute of the least shadow of support in Scripture, and in direct opposition to Elisha’s solemn sentence, “The leprosy shall cleave unto thee and unto thy seed forever.” 2 Kings 5:27.

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Bibliographical Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/2-kings-8.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

2 Kings 8:4. The king talked with Gehazi, the servant of the man of God — Or, who had been his servant formerly. The law did not forbid conversing with lepers at a due distance, but only the dwelling with them. Thus Naaman conversed with Elisha’s family at a distance; and the lepers called to our Lord, as he went along the highway.

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Bibliographical Information
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/2-kings-8.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Giezi was not yet infected; (Salien; Menochius) or if he was, (Haydock) the king spoke to him at a distance, overcoming his natural repugnance, in order to know some particulars of the life of Eliseus. (Calmet) --- This he would more readily do, if Giezi had brought the glad tidings of plenty. (Tirinus) --- Providence ordered that he should be present at this time, that he might bear witness to the woman. (Calmet)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/2-kings-8.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

all the great things. See note on 2 Kings 2:15.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/2-kings-8.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And the king talked with Gehazi the servant of the man of God, saying, Tell me, I pray thee, all the great things that Elisha hath done.

The king talked with Gehazi. The circumstances narrated in these opening verses are generally believed to have taken place before the infliction of leprosy upon Gehazi, though they are recorded after the account of it. Kings in the East often talk with the servants of others about the doings and affairs of their masters. 'Goosh Bekee, the prime minister of the king of Bokhara, engaged my Jewish servant in a conversation about my business' (Joseph Wolff, 'Missionary Labours,' p. 493). The providence of God so ordained that king Jehoram had been led to inquire with great interest into the miraculous deeds of Elisha, and that the prophet's servant was in the act of relating the marvelous incident of the restoration of the Shunammite's son, when she made her appearance to prefer her request. The king was pleased to grant it, and a state officer was charged to afford her every facility in the recovery of her family possession out of the hands of the occupier.

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Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/2-kings-8.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(4) And the king talked.—And the king was speaking unto.

Gehazi.—He, therefore, was not yet a leper (2 Kings 5:27). So Keil and some earlier expositors. But lepers, though excluded from the city, were not excluded from conversation with others. (Comp. Matthew 8:2; Luke 17:12.) Naaman was apparently admitted into the royal palace (2 Kings 5:6). The way, however, in which Gehazi is spoken of as “the servant of the man of God” (comp. 2 Kings 5:20) seems to imply the priority of the present narrative to that of 2 Kings 5.

Tell me, I pray thee, all the great things.—“The history of Elijah and Elisha has a distinctly popular character; it reads like a story told by word of mouth, full of the dramatic touches and vivid presentations of detail which characterise all Semitic history that closely follows oral narration. The king of Israel of whom we read in 2 Kings 8:4, was, we may be sure, not the only man who talked with Gehazi, saying, ‘Tell me, I pray thee, all the great things that Elisha hath done.’ By many repetitions the history of the prophets took a fixed shape long before it was committed to writing, and the written record preserves all the essential features of the narratives that passed from mouth to mouth, and were handed down orally from father to child.” (Prof. Robertson Smith, The Prophets of Israel, p. 116.)

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/2-kings-8.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And the king talked with Gehazi the servant of the man of God, saying, Tell me, I pray thee, all the great things that Elisha hath done.
the king
As it appears not likely that the king would hold conversation with a leprous man; or, that, knowing Gehazi had been dismissed with the highest disgrace from the prophet's service, he would talk with him concerning his late master; some have supposed that this happened before the cleansing of Naaman. But it agrees better with the chronology to consider it as having taken place after that event; the king, probably, having an insatiable curiosity to know the private history of a man who had done such astonishing things. As to the circumstances of Gehazi's disease, he might overlook that, and converse with him, keeping at a reasonable distance, as nothing but actual contact could defile.
Gehazi
5:20-27; 7:3,10
Tell
Matthew 2:8; Luke 9:9; 23:8; John 9:27; Acts 24:24
all the great
2:14,20-22,24; 3:14-16; 4:3-6,16,17; 5:14,27; 6:6,9-12,17-20,32; 7:1,16-20
Reciprocal: Genesis 42:1 - Why do ye;  2 Kings 4:12 - Gehazi

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Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 2 Kings 8:4". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/2-kings-8.html.