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THE CAPTIVITY OF ISRAEL.—2 Kings xvii. 6-18. (About 721
REQITE VS. 13, 14, 18. 6 In the ninth year of Hoshea the king of Assyria took Samaria,
and carried Israel away iuto Assyria, and placed them in Halah and in Habor by the river of Gozan, and in the cities of the
Medes. 7 For so it was, that the children of Israel had sinned against
the LORD their God, which had brought them up out of the
land of Egypt, from under the hand of Pharaoh king of 8 Egypt, and had feared other gods, | And walked in the statutes
of tbe heathen, whom the LORD cast out from before the chil
dren of Israel, and of the kings of Israel, which they had niade. 9 And the children of Israel did secretly those things that were
not right against the LORD their God, and they built them high
places in all their cities, from the tower of the watchmen to the 10 fenced city. | And they set them up images and groves in every 11 high hill, and under every green tree: 1 And there they burnt in
cense in all the high places, as did the heathen whom the LORD
carried away before them; and wrought wicked things to pro12 voke the LORD to anger: For they served idols, whereof the
LORD had said unto them, Ye shall not do this thing. 13 Yet the Lord testiñed against Israel, and against
Judah, by all the prophets, and by all the seers, saying, Turn ye from your evil ways, and keep my commandments and my statutes, according to all the law which I commanded your fathers,
and which I sent to you by my servants the 14 prophets. | Notwithstanding they would not
hear, but hardened their necks, like to the neck
of their fathers, that did not believe in the Lord 15 their God.) And they rejected his statutes, and his cove
nant that he made with their fathers, and his testimonies which he testified against them; and they followed vanity, and became vain, and went after the heathen that were round about
them, concerning whom the LORD had charged them, that they 16 should not do like them. | And they left all the commandments
of the LORD their God, and made them molten images, even two
calves, and inade a grove, and worshipped all the host of heaven, 17 and served Baal. | And they caused their sons and their daugh
ters to pass through the fire, and used divination and enchant.
ments, and sold themselves to do evil in the sight of the LORD, 18 to provoke him to anger. | Therefore the Lord was
very angry with Israel, and removed them out of his sight: there was none left but the tribe of Judah only.
GOLDEN TEXT.-Because they obeyed not the voice of the Lord their God.--2 Kings xviii. 12.
CENTRAL TRUTH.—God for. sakes those who forsake him.
CONNECTED HISTORY.-More than a hundred years elapsed be tween the death of Elisha (see Lesson XXI.) and the captivity of Israel. During that time Amos and Hosea had prophesied. (See Lessons XXII. and XXIII.) Seven kings had reigned. (See Table of Kings, p. 86.) Israel had been twice made tributary to Assyria, and the tribes east of the Jordan, with a part of the northern Israelites, had been carried into captivity.
ORDER OF EVENTS.-(95.) The captivity of Israel. TO THE SCHOLAR.-Fix in your mind the duration of the kingdom of Israel and the circumstances of its destruction, so that you may never be puzzled hereafter when you hear " the Assyrian captivity" mentioned as distinguished from the “ Babylonian captivity" i20 years later.
NOTES.-Ho-she! -a (God is help), the nineteenth and last king of Israel; son of Elah ; slew Pekah, and succeeded bim on the throne; reigned 9 years (729-721 B.C.).- As-syr'-;-a, a great empire of the East; founded by Asshur on the Euphrates; extending from Armenia to Babylon; 450 miles long, 300 wide.-Ha'-lah, probably on the Upper Khabour River.-Ha'-bor," the river of Gozan,” proba ably the Khabour, a famous tributary of the Euphrates; entering from the north-west.-Go-zan, probably the district watered by the Khabour, which is remarkably fertile.- Tower of the watchmen. Towers were built in the desert places for the protection of flocks and herds; hence, the country as distinct from the “ fenced city," and both together signifying everywhere.- Div'-i-na'-tion, the superstitious observance of any kind of omens, as from birds, the heavenly bodies, and a great variety of sources.-En-chant-ments, including omens, serpent-charming, magical spells, etc.; all kinds of enchantments were forbidden by the Mosaic law, Lev. xix. 26; Deut. xviii. 10.-Pass through the fire, children were sucrificed as burnt-offerings to the idol Moloch, being put into the arms of the heated image. 2 Kings xvi. 3; xxi. 6. The Jews were warned against this (Lev. xvili. 21), and it was often rebuked by the prophets. Jer. vii. 31; Ezek. xvi. 20, etc.
EXPLANATIONS AND QUESTIONS. Lesson Topics.-(I.) ISRAEL'S CAPTIVITY. (II.) IsRAEL'S APOSTASY. (III.) ISRAEL'S FINAL REJECTION,
1. ISRAEL'S CAPTIVITY. (6.) Hoshea, see Notes; king of Assyria, Sargon, the successor of Shalmaneser who died B. C. 722; took Samaria, compare Hosea x. 7, 8; Micah i. 6; carried Israel away, 27,280 persons were removed, according to the Assyrian monuments; Assyria ... Halah ... Habor ... Gozan, see Notes. [The kingdom of Israel lasted for 255 years, B. C. 975–721.) I. Questions.--In what year did this captivity begin? Who
was king of Israel? Relate his history. vs. 1-5. Who took Samaria? How long had it been besieged? Where were the Israelites carried? Where was Halah? Habor? Gozan? llow
long had the kingdom of Israel lasted ? II. ISRAEL'S APOSTASY. (8.) whom the Lord cast out, the Canaanites. (9.) high places, altars on hill-tops and other high places; tower . . . fenced city, see Notes. (10.) images, statues, perhaps of Baal; in, on; every green tree, those most conspicuous as landmarks, II. Questions.-State the reason why God suffered the Israel
ites to be carried away captive. How had they sinned against him? What forms of worship had they adopted? What secretly done? What built? Where? What set up ? Where? Meaning of “high places”? “ Tower of the watchmen"? What
commandment did they break by their idolatry? Repeat it. III. ISRAEL'S FINAL REJECTION. (13.) testified, in addition to having given the law; all the prophets, see list of them on p. 88; Turn ye, etc., repent and reform, see Hosea xii. 6; Joel ii, 12; Amos v. 4-15; Isa. i. 16-20. (15.) statutes, laws; testimonies, warnings of the prophets; vanity, a nonentity, representing what does not exist, I Cor. viii. 4. (16.) molten images, made of melted metal; host of heaven, the sun, moon, and stars; served Baal, 1 Kings xvi. 32. (17.) fire ... divination :.. enchantments, see Notes; sold themselves, into bondage to evil see 1 Kings xxi, 20; Rom. vi, 16. III. Questions. What did the Lord give them in addition to
the law? Mention some of the principal prophets. What was the substance of their preaching ? State some of the messages of Hosea, Joel, Amos, Isaiah. How did they treat God's call to repentance? What did they reject? What follow? What idols did they make? What worship? Whom serve? What compel their children to do? To what sell themselves? How did this wickedness affect God? What punishment did he in
flict? What tribe was left? How are we taught in this lesson
(1.) That God's hand is in national judgments ? (2.) That the possession of peculiar privileges does not ensure piety?
(3.) That those who forsake God will be forsaken?
SINS DESTROYED ISRAEL.
Hymn,“ Whoe'er would win the battle.”—Calvary Songs, p. 120.
GOLDEN TEXT.-The Lord is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked.--Nahum i. 3.
CENTRAL TRUTH.-The Lord bears with but will not acquit the wicked.
Heb. x. 17-31.
Plan for Review.-In reviewing (viewing again) an effort should be made to show the connection between the lessons. If they stand detached and isolated in the scholar's mind, they will be soon forgotten, not being bound together by the natural association of ideas.
The memory will be aided by gronping the persons and events about some central thought, wbich may be written upon the blackboard, thus :
xvii., xviii., xxi. II. THE BAAL PROPHETS, Lesson xix. III, THE THREE MINOR PROPHETS, Lessons XX., xxii.,
xxiii. IV. PROPHECY FULFILLED, Lesson xxiv.
I. ELISHA THE PROPHET. Whom did Elisha succeed in the prophetic office? How many of
his miracles have we studied ? Name them in their order. The Oil Increased, to supply whose want? How was the
creditor oppressing her? What did the prophet bid her do? How many vessels were filled with oil? What was she bidden
to do with it? The Shunammite had lost her son in what way? Where did
she go in search of Elisha? Whom did the prophet send to the child ? With what directions? The result? Relate how
Elisha restored the child to life. Naaman the Leper lived in what country? State his rank.
Ilis disease. Who suggested that Elisha might cure him ? What did Naaman take with him? How did the king of Israel receive the letter? Elisha's message the king? State Elisha's directions to Naaman. How did lie receive them? Who perKuaded him to bathe in the Jordan? With what result?
Gehazi the Leper was the servant of whom? What did he
ask from Naaman? Upon what pretext? How much did Naaman give him ? Where did Gehazi hide it? How did
Elisha discover his guilt? What punishment was inflicted ? Elisha at Dothan was besieged by what army? How had the
Syrians been thwarted? Who had given information to the king of Israel? How did the Syrians attempt to capture him ? The effect upon Elisha's servant? For what did Elisha pray?
What did the young man see? The Famine in Samaria took place when? What shows its
severity ? Why did the Syrians fee? Who first discovered their flight? Who went in pursuit? What was the price of
flour and barley? What prophecy was thus fulfilled ? The Death of Elisha took place at about what time? Who
came to visit him ? How did he lament for the prophet? What did Elisha command him to take? How many times did he shoot? What miracle was wrought by Elisha's bones?
II. THE BAAL PROPHETS. Jehu the king made what proclamation? How many Baal
worshippers assembled ? What penalty was threatened to all who remained away? How were the worshippers of Jehovah excluded ? State the command given to the guards. How many were killed? What was done with the Baal-images? What idols were spared? How was Jehu rewarded? In what sins did he continue?
III. THE THREE MINOR PROPHETS. Jonah at Nineveh, by what command ? State the history of
his first commission ; his attempted flight; his punishment and rescue.
Where was Nineveh? Its extent? Its population! The message of Jonah? Its effect upon the Ninevites?
In staying God's judgment? The Lamentation of Amos was for what people? State the
substance of it. Whom did he exhort them to seek? What not to seek? For what sins did he rebuke the people? What
hope extend to them? The Promise of Revival was given by what prophet? What
sacrifice were they exhorted to bring? State the three special sins to be renounced. God's proinise. Some of the einblems of Israel's prosperity. Who would understand God's ways? What should be the fate of the transgressors ?
IV. PROPHECY FULFILLED. The Captivity of Isrnel had been predicted by what proph
ets? In what year did it take place ? Whither were the Israelites carried? On account of what sins? Ilow bad Jehovah called them to repentance? With what result? How did God regard them? How does he now regard the righteous ? How the wicked? State some practical lessons for ourselves
from this review, HYMN, “God loved the world of sinners lost."-
"-Culvary Songs, p. 58.