Elisha went to Damascus at a time when King Benhadad of Syria was sick. When the king was told that Elisha was there,
he said to Hazael, one of his officials, "Take a gift to the prophet and ask him to consult the Lord to find out whether or not I am going to get well."
So Hazael loaded forty camels with all kinds of the finest products of Damascus and went to Elisha. When Hazael met him, he said, "Your servant King Benhadad has sent me to ask you whether or not he will recover from his sickness."
Elisha answered, "The Lord has revealed to me that he will die; but go to him and tell him that he will recover."
Then Elisha stared at him with a horrified look on his face until Hazael became ill at ease. Suddenly Elisha burst into tears.
"Why are you crying, sir?" Hazael asked. "Because I know the horrible things you will do against the people of Israel," Elisha answered. "You will set their fortresses on fire, slaughter their finest young men, batter their children to death, and rip open their pregnant women."
"How could I ever be that powerful?" Hazael asked. "I'm a nobody!" 1 "The Lord has shown me that you will be king of Syria," Elisha replied.
Hazael went back to Benhadad, who asked him, "What did Elisha say?" "He told me that you would certainly get well," Hazael answered.
But on the following day Hazael took a blanket, soaked it in water, and smothered the king. And Hazael succeeded Benhadad as king of Syria.