The Judgment of the Scoffing Children

2 Kings 2:23‑25  •  1 min. read  •  grade level: 8
Another meditation is suggested here: children of Bethel are another order of persons altogether. If Elisha presents the strong one in Christ, the true Levite, who had turned his back on all but the glory, and the chariot of fire to conduct him to it; and if the sons of the prophets are the weak ones—still, however, by divine grace in the same company as Elisha—then these children of Bethel, on the other hand, are the mockers, or infidels. They despise the word of the Lord. They mock the thought of ascension:. “Where is the promise of His coming?”they say (2 Peter 3). The whole mystery of God, made known for salvation and glory, is their sport. They put the Son of God to open shame. “Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head,” they say to Elisha, as mocking the thought that Elijah had already gone up. And here the curse falls. Ministers of wrath come forth—the bears on the children of Bethel, and the eagles on the carcass— to vindicate the divine truth against the gainsayers. Creation, it is true, is not to groan forever under the curse which our sin has put on it—but shall be delivered from bondage into glorious liberty (Rom. 8), as Jericho had just been. But the curse will rest on the Cain—children of Bethel, who despise God’s remedy for the misery wrought by sin. And it is written of such mocking, infidel children—children of disobedience, whether of Babylon, of Bethel, or of Edom, “Happy shall he be that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones” (Psa. 137).*