2 Kings 13:1-25
Monday, 14 November 2022
Elisha said to him, “Take a bow and arrows.” So he took a bow and arrows. …….“Put your hand on the bow.” And he put his hand on it, then Elisha laid his hands on the king’s hands.- 2 Kings 13:15,16
How often our disbelief and lack of absolute obedience, limits the work of God in and through our lives! Throughout Scripture we see numerous instances of people who through their lack of persistence and submission have fallen away from God’s plan. The Prophet Elisha’s final prophecy and King Joash’s response to the divine purpose in 2 Kings 13 is one such example that provides profound insight for our firm and focused Christian walk.
Absolute Trust in the Lord: King Joash’s grief over Elisha’s sickness and impending departure in Vs 14 indicates that the king was distressed that God’s presence would depart with the demise of Elisha. His trust was in the man of God – the prophet Elisha, for the deliverance of Israel rather than in the Almighty God – the true Deliverer of Israel! In the place of the great leader Moses, God raised Joshua to accomplish even greater feats! In the place of the valiant conqueror King David, God raised his son, King Solomon to build the Temple of God! God uses us for His kingdom work depending upon our availability and submission, but the ultimate glory is to God alone! Let our trust not be placed in men and leaders, but understanding and accepting God’s plan for our lives, let our hearts and eyes be fixed on God alone as we run this race with endurance.
Focus on the Eternal: The King sought the prophet’s guidance for the temporary victory of Israel from the Arameans – a victory God gave them (V. 25). But how much more the Lord would have delivered them, if the King’s heart had been set on the spiritual welfare of the nation! Take your eyes off the temporal and focus on the eternal! God promises to protect and lead us victoriously in our earthly life, but His joy is greater when we forgo the temporal things of the world and labour diligently to save lost souls in light of the eternal glory! “For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:17-18)
God Fights your Battles: In response to the King’s plea, the prophet symbolically proclaimed God’s plan and purpose. Elisha’s hand on the king’s hand as he positioned the bow and arrow towards Aram, foretells the presence and victory of God in the ensuing battle. No matter how hopeless or overwhelming a situation may seem to the finite human mind, remember that it is God who fights our battles! Do not be discouraged. We are called to be more than conquerors through Christ Jesus.
A Persistent Faith: However, when asked to strike the ground with the remaining arrows in the quiver, King Joash stopped after striking three times (Vs 18). This shows a lack of persistence and weakness of faith in fulfilling God’s plan, which angered the prophet. Are we at times like the King, having a half-hearted submission to the plan and purpose of God? Or are our prayers and endeavors for the advancement of God’s Kingdom soaked in tears, until it bears fruit?
How God uses us depends on our response to His purpose! Let us not limit God’s work by our lack of faith and submission. May we yield to His call and respond with a wholehearted submission, allowing the Holy Spirit to work in and through us.
Key Verse 2: “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” (Ephesians 3:20-21)