Sept. 27, 2016
2 Kings 6-Part 4
The LORD had caused... 2 Kings 7:6
LET IT GLOW
There are so many people working behind the scenes in our churches, faithfully serving. People empty trash, clean out refrigerators, straighten up the kitchen, pick up toys, distribute literature, etc. The list goes on. They don't do those tasks for recognition, but to meet needs. God is often working behind the scenes when we do not see things changing. It is coming up soon in our reading. Meantime, Elisha is faithfully serving God, yet being blamed for a famine in a city of Samaria.
Ben-hadad, the king of Syria and enemy of Israel, had previously sieged the city of Samaria with the help of 32 kings (1 Kings 20:1). This occurred during the reign of the wicked King Ahab in Israel. In contrast to the smaller raiding parties and the larger force seeking Elisha's capture (verse 14), Ben-hadad gathered his entire army, once again, marched to Samaria, and besieged the capital. (MacArthur)
The siege resulted in a terrible famine for the Israelis living in the city of Samaria. The enemy camped outside the city, too. Desperate times called for desperate measures, with people resorting to eating the head of donkeys, an unclean animal, and dove droppings used for fuel. These animals were sold at exorbitant prices. Mothers resorted to savage cannibalism of their own children. (verses 26-29)
Life Application Study Bible explains the situation here:
When a city like Samaria faced famine, it was no small matter. Although its farmers grew enough food to feed the people for a specific season, they did not have enough to sustain them in prolonged times of emergency when all supplies were cut off. Deuteronomy 28:49-57 predicted mothers would resort to eating their children when the people of Israel rejected God's leadership.Was the Lord attempting to use this famine to bring repentance to His people living in Samaria?
We do not read of their repentance, though.
LET IT GROW
The king was so shocked and horrified with conditions in Samaria, that he vented his own anxieties and frustrations on Elisha, swearing to behead him. The doors were barred to prevent the executioner from entering because Elisha knew the king had changed his mind and was coming to reverse his order execution. (Falwell)
When the king arrived, the door was opened and he spoke to Elisha in verse 33, All this misery is from the LORD! Why should I wait for the LORD any longer?
Elisha was not to blame for what was happening. God was judging Samaria (Amos 3:6) Israel had left the Lord God, so their calamity was brought about by Jehovah in response to sin. Since Elisha was a man of God, did the king think Elisha would do any miracle he wanted? Thus, Elisha had not come to his rescue, ending the siege of Samaria. Neither had Israel had repented of their sin of forsaking God to worship idols.
How long should we wait for God to answer our prayers? Do we grow impatient and take matters into our own hands? Do we look for those to blame instead of looking inside our self?
Hang on just a little bit longer, dear one, for God is working behind the scenes, though we may not see any evidence today. Tomorrow...
LET IT GO
Wait a little bit longer on God to work in my situation.
Wait. Keep the faith. Look around. See God working.