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Exegetical Paper Two (2nd King


            Exegetical Paper Two (2nd Kings 5:1-6:1).
             The biblical passage I am doing this exegetical paper on appears to be one of those mystery passages that no one knows anything about. This passage is part of what many people call the Elisha cycle. This cycle is inserted into Kings in the middle of the reign of King Jehoram. The events mentioned in the Elisha cycle seem to take longer than the reign of King Jehoram and don't seem to mesh with what was happening during his reign, either.
             When exactly this pericope does belong in Israel's time period, though, is greatly contested. Unfortunately we don't have any archaeological evidence to help us date this passage. We know that the kingdom of Aram did exist and was based out of Damascus, but other than that archaeology doesn't help. (Tadmor, 104) Knowing this, we are left with two theories. One of these theories is that the Elisha cycle started during the reign of King Jehoram, and it went through to the King Joash and King Jehu. (Tadmor, 11) The second idea is that the Elisha cycle was written during Ahab, Ahaziah, Jehoram's reigns. (Freedman, 472 vol.2) .
             Regardless of the exact date of this passage, we still know that it happened during the middle of the divided kingdom period when both Israel and Judah were falling in and out of love with God. The priesthood was no longer something to be always trusted and so Elijah and Elisha stepped in to be the spiritual guides for the time. Elisha, however, did not live to see Israel fall into the hands of their enemy.
             It is also not known about what period in Elisha's life this passage was written about. Again some of the events within the Elisha cycle appear to be out of order with how they happened chronologically. (Tadmor, 11) It can't be exactly dated, nor can it be said where this event took place because there are no references within the pericope. The only clue as to the location is that Naaman could easily bathe in the Jordan River.


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