II Kings 7 includes a most unusual story concerning the citizens of the capital city,
Samaria, in the Northern Kingdom. The city has been under siege by the Arameans from Syria led by Ben Haddad II, and conditions are desperate. It’s a dark picture of scarcity of food, inflation, starvation, cannabalism, and death.
Elisha delivered the Word of the Lord promising that circumstances were about to change in 24 hours. (From despair to hope, from scarcity to plenty)
Choices: The king’s right hand man expressed his mocking doubt upon hearing the prophecy. Four lepers were witnesses of God’s deliverance – Would they share the good news? Would King Jehoram believe the report and trust in God’s provision?
God still delivers and cares for His people even when there is no evidence of repentance – acts of undeserved grace.
1) What was the fate of the king’s captain? Elisha had said, “You will in fact see it with your own eyes, but you won’t eat any of it.” This is what happened to him; the people trampled him in the city gate, and he died.” II Kings 7:19b-20
2) Would the four lepers share the good news with their fellow countrymen?
“So the diseased men got up at twilight to go to the Arameans’ camp. When they came to the camp’s edge, they discovered that no one was there, for the Lord had caused the Aramean camp to hear the sound of chariots, horses, and a large army…So they had gotten up and fled at twilight, abandoning their tents, horses, and donkeys. The camp was intact, and they had fled for their lives. When these diseased men came to the edge of the camp, they went into a tent to eat and drink. Then they picked up the silver, gold, and clothing and went off and hid them. They came back and entered another tent, picked things up, and hid them. Then they said to each other, “We’re not doing what is right. Today is a day of good news. ” II Kings 7: 5-9
3) The news was reported to the king’s household. But the king was cautious. Was this a trap? It was one of his servants that persuaded King Jehoram to at least send out some scouts to investigate.
Results? “They saw that the whole way was littered with clothes and equipment the Arameans had thrown off in their haste. The messengers returned and told the king.
Then the people went out and plundered the Aramean camp.” II Kings 7:15-16
Possible lessons to be learned:
Sometimes God provides in unexpected ways.
Sometimes we have to be in a place of desperation to see God at work.
Doubting God can lead to missed opportunities to experience God’s blessing.
Believers should make wise choices: take all the resources available (knowledge and facts) and then choose to please God by trusting Him!