Have some damn respect for those called by God or else watch out.
Have some damn respect for slapheads, or God will make you suffer.
Things aren't always what they seem at first glance, especially in a translation. Rashi has this to say about verse 23: "and some little boys: Heb. וּנְעָרִים, people empty [of any observance of commandments].Go away, baldy: Go away from here, for you have made the place bald for us, for until now we would hire ourselves out to bring sweet water from a distance, and we would earn our livelihood thereby. And when the water became sweet, they lost their livelihood. Thus it is explained in Sotah (46b)" Hebrew has many more nuances and meanings than English, and so many things escape in a translation. The phrase translated as "youths" can also be rendered "young men" and the word translated as "go up" can also be translated as "pay up", so maybe this was a shakedown. Just some things for thought.
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As mentioned by Jeff, sometimes the translation does not help, we also need to look at the context.little childrenThe words nearim ketannim not only signify little children but young men; for katon signifies not only little, but young, in opposition to old; and naar signifies not only a child, but a young man grown to years of maturity. Thus Isaac is called naar when twenty-eight years old, Joseph when thirty-nine, and Rehoboam when forty. (Treasure of Scripture Knowledge)Other observationsElisha was God's prophet. He'd just restored the waters in Jericho. These young men were mocking him, "go up" possibly a reference to Elijah?.. "baldy go away like Elijah did".They mocked Elisha, they were in effect also mocking God, and in this case God's judgement was with bears.To me the lesson is to the unbeliever, that mocking God has consequences.
This is a midrash style picture of the last days. Those who mock the rapture are destroyed by two beasts. The 42 illustrates the 42 months in which the the two beasts or Revelation will have their rule. Those who mock God's witnesses in the end will be judged through the anitichrist. How do I come to this conclusion? Where else do the two beasts, a rapture and 42 occur together in scripture? Note: this is not to place the rapture at a particular popint, it simply illustrates one aspect (mocking of the rightreous in that time) of the events which go together.
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