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GOD’s WORD Accomplished (2 Kings Chapters 9 and 10)

A Study in 2 KingsFor as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
And do not return there without watering the earth
And making it bear and sprout
And furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater
So will MY WORD be which goes forth from MY Mouth
It will not return to ME empty
Without accomplishing what I desire
And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it
Isaiah 55:10-11

In this BIBLE study of 2 Kings Chapters 9 and 10, we will observe the accomplishment of GOD’s WORD concerning the house of Ahab the king of Israel. Because Jezebel his wife incited him, Ahab did more evil in the sight of our Beloved LORD GOD than all the kings of Israel before him (1 Kin 16:29-33, 1 Kin 21:25-26). As a result, the following judgments were pronounced against all who belonged to his house:

  • Jehu, the son of Nimshi, would be anointed king over Israel in Ahab’s place (1 Kin 19:16).
  • Jehu would put to death anyone that escaped from the sword of Hazael (1 Kin 19:17).
  • The place in Jezreel where Naboth and his sons’ blood were spilled for their vineyard, the blood of Ahab’s sons who lived in Jezreel, would be spilled (1 Kin 21:19).
  • The dogs would eat Jezebel in the district of Jezreel (1 Kin 21:23).
  • Every male in the house of Ahab, whether free or bond, would be cutoff or killed (1 Kin 21:21-22).

Beginning with 2 Kings Chapter 9, judgments come to pass, accomplishing GOD’s WORD concerning the House of Ahab:

  • In 2 Kings 9:1-6, Elisha sent one of the sons of the prophets to Jehu, a servant of the king of Israel (Jehoram aka Joram) and one of the captains in his army). Elisha instructed the young man to take Jehu into an inner room (2 Kin 9:2, 2 Kin 9:6), anoint him with oil from a flask he brought with him (2 Kin 9:3, 2 Kin 9:6), speaking ‘Thus says The LORD, “I have anointed you king over Israel.”’ (2 Kin 9:3, 2 Kin 9:6), and flee, do not wait (2 Kin 9:3). Thus, accomplishing our Beloved LORD GOD’s WORD that Jehu would be anointed the next king of Israel (1 Kin 19:16).
  • In 2 Kings 9:10, Jehu is instructed to accomplish GOD’s WORD concerning the house of Ahab.
  • In 2 Kings 9:11-13, the captains in the army of Israel, along with their troops at Ramoth-gilead, acknowledge Jehu as the king of Israel and support him, by throwing their garments under his feet. Through this act, our Beloved LORD GOD has given Jehu the army needed to accomplish the overthrow of the house of Ahab.
  • In 2 Kings 9:15, we are shown three things. First, king Jehoram was injured in the battle against Hazael, king of Aram. Second, king Jehoram left his army at Ramoth-gilead and went to Jezreel (a city north of the capital city of Samaria where one of the King’s residences was located–1 Kin 21:1) to recuperate from his wounds. And third, Jehu instructed the captains of the Israel army to let no one either escape or leave Ramoth-gilead to go announce he had been made king. Jehu wanted to catch his enemies by surprise.
  • In 2 Kings 9:16-37, we witness six events and four prophecies fulfilled:
    • 2 Kin 9:16-17, Jehu was a captain (or a commander) the army of Israel, and he had a company (two or more platoons of soldiers) whom he led. He rode in his chariot, taking his company with him to Jezreel to kill Jehoram (Joram), and defeat any uprising.
    • 2 Kin 9:16, Ahaziah, the wicked king of Judah, had come down to see king Joram of Israel. Ahaziah was actually checking on the well-being of his uncle, as his mother was Joram’s sister. Joram and Athaliah were both the children of Ahab and Jezebel (2 Kin 3:1, 2 Kin 8:18).
    • 2 Kin 9:17-20, there was a watchman standing on the tower in Jezreel, doing exactly what a watchman should be doing:
      • keeping watch; he was aware Jehu and his company headed toward Jezreel (2 Kin 9:17).
      • notified the one who could do something about it (the king of Israel), informing him of an incoming company of warriors (2 Kin 9:17).
      • kept the king apprised of what was happening; letting the king know the messengers he sent out, did not return, instead they joined the warriors (2 Kin 9:18-20).
      • identified the enemy upon closer approach; the leader of the incoming company of warriors, drives like his servant Jehu (2 Kin 9:20).
    • In 2 Kings 9:21-26, we witness the interaction between Jehu and Joram, the death of Joram by Jehu’s hand, and the fulfillment of three prophecies:
      • Jehu and his company stopped at the property of Naboth, the Jezreelite (2 Kin 9:21), where king Joram personally met him. He inquired was the mission one of peace. Jehu informed Joram there could be no peace as long as idolatry and witchcraft existed in Israel through his mother the queen (2 Kin 9:22).
      • King Joram tried to turn and flee, as he warned his nephew Ahaziah, the king of Judah (2 Kin 9:23). But Jehu killed Joram.
      • Jehu had Joram’s body thrown into the property of the field of Naboth, the Jezreelite (2 Kin 9:24-26), beginning the fulfilment of GOD’s judgment against the house of Ahab (2 Kin 9:7-9), and fulfilling three prophecies. The first prophecy, the dogs will lick up Ahab’s blood in the same place the dogs had licked up Naboth’s blood (1 Kin 21:19)*; the second prophecy, the blood of Ahab’s descendants who die in the city, the dogs will eat (1 Kin 21:24); the third prophecy, the destruction of Ahab’s house, would happen in the days of his sons (1 Kin 21:29).      
    • In 2 Kings 9:27-29, Ahaziah is killed by Jehu. With Ahaziah’s death, two things occur, a male from the house of Ahab is cutoff, even though he is king of Judah. He might have lived, as his son after him would live, but he died. Because he led Judah in the same evil practices as the house of Ahab (2 Chr 22:1-4)
    • In 2 Kings 9:30-37, the judgment against Jezebel is carried out because she incited her husband Ahab in wickedness (1 Kin 21:25), murdered the prophets and servants of The LORD (2 Kin 9:7), and had an innocent man and his sons, murdered for their vineyard (1 Kin 21:7-15, 2 Kin 9:25-26). Jezebel was:
      • the wife of Ahab and mother of Joram (1 Kin 16:29-31, 2 Kin 9:22)
      • the daughter of a Sidonian king (1 Kin 16:31-33), brought Baal worship into Israel (1 Kin 16:32, 1 Kin 18:17-19).
      • aware that Jehu had come to Jezreel and killed her son. But instead of humbling herself, she put on makeup and waited at the window for Jehu’s arrival (2 Kin 9:30). As Jehu entered the gate to the palace, she taunted him, by calling him Zimri, the fifth wicked king in Israel, who like Jehu was a commander that killed his master, the fourth king of Israel (2 Kin 9:31, 1 Kin 16:8-10). Though Zimri was only king for 7 days (1 Kin 16:15-19), GOD used him to complete the destruction of the house of Baasha (1 Kin 16:8-20).
      • in an upper palace window, when Jehu carried out GOD’s judgment against her, fulfilling a fourth prophecy concerning the house of Ahab (2 Kin 9:32-37, 1 Kin 21:23, 2 Kin 9:10).

As we continue on to 2 Kings Chapter 10, we see Jehu completing his mandate against the house of Ahab. Our Beloved LORD GOD gives us insight into why HE chose Jehu to execute HIS judgment, why the other captains of the army of Israel quickly accepted him as king, and why they kept his initial instructions to keep his appointment as king of Israel quiet. In this chapter, we will witness Jehu’s expert skills in warfare (strategy, tactics, and techniques of combat), in bringing down the house of Ahab.

  • In 2 Kin 10:1-7, Ahab had seventy sons in the capital city of Samaria, where they were being protected, cared for, and prepared for places of leadership by the rulers, elders, guardians, and prominent men in that city (2 Kin 10:1, 2 Kin 10:6). Jehu chose a strategy of psychological warfare against the leaders and guardians in Samaria. He knew by now, that all of Israel and Judah, were aware that he had killed their reigning kings and Jezebel. So Jehu sent a letter to the leaders and guardians in Samaria, noting they had the things necessary to go to war against him (horses, chariots, a city fortified with walls, and weapons), and suggested they choose one of Ahab’s best and most upright sons and make him king. Then they and their new king of Israel could engage him in warfare (2 Kin 10:2-3). The psychological warfare was effective, because without the need to go to physical battle against Samaria, the leaders, and guardians:
    • refused to fight against Jehu (2 Kin 10:4)
    • acknowledged Jehu as the king of Israel, and promised obedience (2 Kin 10:5)

Jehu then sent a second letter, calling the leaders and guardians to decapitate all seventy sons, and come to him the next day at Jezreel (2 Kin 10:7). The leaders and guardians carried out Jehu’s instructions, and slaughtered all seventy of Ahab’s sons, but sent the heads to Jezreel without accompanying them (2 Kin 10:7).

  • In 2 Kin 10:8-10, Jehu continues his psychological warfare in Jezreel. He had the seventy heads of Ahab’s sons piled up in two heaps until morning, on either side of the entrance gate to Jezreel. The next morning, he publicly admits to killing Jehoram, but he questions who killed the seventy sons of Ahab in Samaria and shipped them to Jezreel. He then testifies that every single word GOD spoke through HIS prophet Elijah against the house of Ahab would be accomplished. In one announcement he garnered support for himself and removed any resistance to a commission he was carrying out on behalf of GOD and HIS servant Elijah.
  • In 2 Kin 10:11, Jehu completed his commission in Jezreel by putting to death all remaining males (free or bond) in Ahab’s family. But Jehu went beyond GOD’s instructions and killed any man who had any type of relationship with Ahab’s family. This sin would not go unpunished, our Beloved LORD GOD would punish the family of Jehu for the bloodshed in Jezreel not belonging to Ahab’s family (Hos 1:4). Rightly did king David say, “Let us now fall into the hand of The LORD for HIS mercies are great, but do not let me fall into the hand of man” (2 Sam 24:14). David understood the cruel heart of man, without mercy, not willing to forgive, and full of judgment.
  • In 2 Kin 10:12-14, Jehu departs for Samaria to complete his mandate and claim his throne. As he and his men were traveling south from Jezreel to Samaria (both cities are located in the map at the end of lesson four), they run into relatives of Ahaziah, king of Judah. Jehu asks them who they are, they identified themselves as relatives of Ahaziah. These forty-two men state their business, “they are going down to greet the sons of the king, and the sons of the queen mother.” These forty-two men also traveling down to Samaria, had not heard what had been happening with the house of Ahab, or even who Jehu was. They essentially identified themselves as part of the house of Ahab, relatives of Ahaziah the grandson of Ahab, and the queen mother (either the daughter of Ahab and Jezebel (Athaliah) or Jezebel herself). As such, they were also put to death.
  • In 2 Kin 10:15-16, Jehu and his men continued their journey to Samaria, when he meets Jehonadab son of Rechab. Jehu and Jehonadab knew each other, as demonstrated by Jehonadab coming to meet Jehu, and Jehu greeting him, instead of asking him to identify himself. Jehu then asks Jehonadab is he in agreement with what he is doing, Jehonadab says yes. Jehu asks him for confirmation by taking his hand and riding in his chariot into Samaria. Jehonadab does (2 Kin 10:15). So, who is Jehonadab? And why is his public allegiance important to Jehu? Jehonadab:
    • Also known as Jonadab (Jer 35:6), belonged to a tribe of scribes who were Kenites (1 Chr 2:55), Jethro the father-in-law of Moses belonged to this tribe (Jdg 1:16), and this tribe showed kindness to the Israelites when they came out of Egypt (1 Sam 15:6) by going with them into the wilderness (Num 10:29-32).
    • A godly man who served only the true GOD of Israel as demonstrated by Jehu’s invitation for him to come see his zeal for The LORD (2 Kin 10:16), and his accompanying Jehu to the house of Baal, to destroy Baal worship in Israel (2 Kin 10:23-28).
    • A man who honored and was honored by GOD (Jer 35:18-19), by walking as a Nazirite (Num 6:1-4, Jdg 3:7) and instructing his descendants after him to walk as Nazirites forever, symbolizing their dedication to GOD (Jer 35:1-6).
    • Was among those faithful saints who considered himself as a sojourner, a stranger, an exile on earth. His permanent home was in the city of GOD (Heb 11:9-10, Heb 11:13-16), instructing his descendants after him to live accordingly (Jer 35:7-11).
  • In 2 Kin 10:17, Jehu entered Samaria and completed his destruction of the house of Ahab, by killing all the remaining males in the capital city.
  • In 2 Kin 10:18-28, Jehu eradicated Baal worship out of Israel by:
    • pretending to serve Baal in a far greater capacity than Ahab (2 Kin 10:18)
    • summoning all the worshippers of Baal (every prophet, priest, and worshipper) in Israel to a solemn assembly; and threatening to kill any worshipper who did not show up (2 Kin 10:19-21)
    • clothing all the worshippers of Baal in garments, so they could be clearly identified, then removing any servants of The LORD (2 Kin 10:22-23)
    • sending in all the worshippers of Baal into the temple to offer sacrifices and burnt offerings (2 Kin 10:24), while stationing eighty soldiers outside, with explicit instructions not to let any Baal worshipper escape (2 Kin 10:24)
    • killing every worshipper of Baal as soon as the burnt offering was finished (2 Kin 10:25)
    • bringing out sacred pillars in the temple of Baal, and burned them (2 Kin 10:26)
    • demolishing both the sacred pillar and temple of Baal, and turned the ruins into a public toilet (2 Kin 10:27)
  • In 2 Kin 10:29-33, we see the justness of our Beloved LORD GOD (Deu 32:4). HE rewarded Jehu for total obedience in completely destroying the house of Ahab, and eradicating Baal worship out of Israel. GOD allowed the house of Jehu to sit on the throne of Israel for over a century. Jehu reigned as king over Israel for twenty-eight years, and his sons after him for four generations (2 Kin 10:30, 2 Kin 10:36, 2 Kin 13:1, 2 Kin 13:10, 2 Kin 14:23, 2 Kin 15:8-12). However, because Jehu continued leading Israel in idolatry (worshipping the golden calves Jeroboam made — 2 Kin 10:29, 2 Kin 10:31), GOD used the Arameans and the Assyrians to continually war with Israel, temporarily reducing their territory (2 Kin 10:32-33, 2 Kin 13:22-25).
  • In 2 Kin 10:34-36, we close this chapter with the death of Jehu and the succession of his son Jehoahaz to the throne of Israel.

In conclusion, in studying chapters nine and ten of 2 Kings, we see GOD repaying the wicked. HE brings a violent end, to a house whose hands are covered with the blood of the righteous (2 Kin 9:7) and the innocent (2 Kin 9:26). We are also given understanding of why our Beloved LORD GOD commands the righteous to separate themselves from the wicked (Psa 1:1, Pro 4:14-17, 2 Cor 6:14-18). When one has a relationship of any level with the wicked, they are influenced by them (1 Kin 11:1-8, Pro 13:20), and will be swept away in their sin (Gen 19:15, Num 16:25-26, Rev 18:4). And in case we still lack understanding, HE strongly tells us in 1 Corinthians 15:33-34:

Do not be deceived

“Bad company corrupts good morals”

Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning

For some have no knowledge of GOD

I speak this to your shame

 

 

 

*it should be noted that when Ahab received the prophecy concerning himself in 1 Kings 21:19, he humbled himself before The LORD, and so our merciful GOD spared him, but the prophecy would be fulfilled with his sons (1 Kin 21:27-29).

The Righteous are Bold as a Lion

Precious Morsels July 7, 2020The wicked flee when no one is pursuing,
But the righteous are bold as a lion.
Proverbs 28:1

King Ahab of Israel was a wicked king, who married an exceedingly wicked Sidonian woman (Jezebel). She brought the worship of her false god Baal into Israel and tried to destroy worship of the true and living GOD, by killing all HIS prophets (1 Kin 18:13).

Under their leadership, the people of Israel tried to combine worshiping GOD and worshipping Baal. This idolatry prevented their hearts from being united to our GOD (Psa 86:11), loving HIM only (Mrk 12:30), worshiping and serving HIM alone (Deu 6:10-13, Mat 4:10).

As a result, GOD sent HIS prophet Elijah, to the king and the nation of Israel to:
1. confront the king and the nation with their sin (1 Kin 18:21)
2. turn their hearts back to the true and living GOD (1 Kin 18:37-39)
3. demonstrate there was only one true and living GOD in Israel (1 Kin 18:22-36)
4. destroy Baal worship (1 Kin 18:40)
5. end the famine, HE called because of the idolatry (1 Kin 18:41-46)

Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, and how he killed all the prophets of Baal and Asherah with a sword. Jezebel sent a message to Elijah threatening that she would end his life the next day. Elijah was afraid and ran for his life (1 Kin 19:1-3).

Elijah’s fear of Jezebel the enemy before him, caused him to forget the powerful GOD beside him. His fear brought depression and discouragement. Our loving GOD met Elijah right where he lay down in disheartenment, raised him up, and provided the sustenance he needed for the journey to meet with HIM at Horeb, the mountain of GOD (1 Kin 19:4-14).

After GOD met with Elijah, HE sent him back to Israel (1 Kin 19:15). What??? Yes, GOD sent him back to continue his ministry. Elijah would continue to stand before his enemies, delivering The WORD of our GOD (1 Kin 21:1-29, 2 Kin 1:1-18).

As my thoughts were full of amazement at what our loving GOD just pointed out to me, in this particular testimony of Elijah; HE gently said “the righteous don’t run from their enemies, they stand before them.” And then HE said “Proverbs 28:1”

The wicked flee when no one is pursuing,
But the righteous are bold as a lion.

The word “bold” in Proverbs 28:1 literally means “confident.” And why are we confident as a lion? Because GOD HIMSELF is our confidence (Pro 3:26, Psa 71:5). If HE is for us, who is against us? (Rom 8:31, Psa 116:6-8, Isa 54:17)

If you are fearful, worried, discouraged, disheartened, get up and put your trust in The LORD. HE is your help and shield (Psa 115:11). HE knows everything that is happening to you (Heb 4:13), HE knows all your needs (Mat 6:31-32). When you take your eyes off your circumstances and place them on HIM, HE will give you HIS peace that surpasses all understanding (Php 4:6-7).

It Will Surely Take Place – 2 Kings 8:1-29

A Study in 2 KingsDeclaring the end from the beginning,
And from ancient times things which have not been done,
Saying, ‘My purpose will be established,
And I will accomplish all My good pleasure
Isaiah 46:10 (Nasb)

From Genesis to Revelation our Beloved LORD GOD has specifically spoken to us about events that would take place, their location, their timing and even their duration. HE also spoke with us about people who were born, who would be born, who are yet to be born, where they would live, what they would do, and how long they would be among us. Truly HE is omniscient, and we will once again state the WORDS of our GOD from Isaiah 46:10 using the Message translation:

From the very beginning
Telling you what the ending will be,
All along letting you in on what is going to happen,
Assuring you, ‘I’m in this for the long haul’
“I’ll do exactly what I set out to do”

In this BIBLE study of 2 Kings Chapter 8, we will witness the continual certainty of our Beloved LORD GOD’s WORD, with the fulfillment of HIS WORDS spoken to two of HIS prophets, Elijah and Elisha. We will do this by studying events surrounding a Shunamite woman, and four kings (two in Aram and two in Judah). In this study we will see that our GOD’s WORD:

  • will accomplish what it was sent to do (Isa 55:11, Isa 14:24, Mat 5:18)
  • is pure and blameless truth (2 Sam 22:31, Psa 12:6, Psa 119:140, Pro 30:5, Tit 1:2, Heb 6:18-19)
  • is sure— certain, trustworthy, always effective (Psa 19:7, Psa 93:5, Psa 111:7-8, 2 Cor 1:20)

Truths reflected in events around the Shunamite woman (2 Kings 8:1-6):

  • In 2 Kings 8:1-2, Elisha is speaking directly to the Shunamite woman who provided meals and accommodations to him and his servant (2 Kin 4:8-13). He tells her that our Beloved LORD GOD has called for a seven-year famine in Israel where she is living. The famine will be severe, and she with her household, should temporarily stay in another land for its duration. In these first two Scriptures of 2 Kings chapter 8, we see three truths:
    • Our GOD makes HIS plans known to HIS servants the prophets (Amo 3:7). Here in 2 Kings 8:1 we see HE made them known to Elisha, and throughout the BIBLE, HE made HIS plans known to Elijah (1 Kin 19:15-17), Noah (Gen 6:13), Abraham (Gen 18:17-21), Isaiah (Isa 9:6-7), Jeremiah (Jer 19:2-15), Daniel (Dan 9:20-27)…, including those today who obey HIS WORD (Jhn 15:14-15).
    • We are preserved and protected through obedience (Psa 37:18-19, 1 Kin 17:1-16). The Shunamite woman obeyed the instruction of Elisha, rising up and going into the land of the Philistines with her household, until the famine was over (2 Kin 8:2).
    • HE prepares a table for us, in the presence of our enemies (Psa 23:5). The Shunamite woman went into the land of Israel’s enemies, the Philistines, and yet for seven years our Blessed LORD GOD took care of her and her household there (2 Kin 8:2).
  • In 2 Kings 8:3-6, at the end of the seven years the Shunamite woman returned to Israel and went to the king to appeal to him to get her home and land back. Not only did the king appoint and officer to restore all that was hers, he also commanded that all that her land produced during her absence was restored. What powerful truths our Beloved LORD GOD reveals to us in 2 Kings 8:3-6:
    • No matter the time period, HE does not forget our service to HIS people (Mat 10:42, Heb 6:10) or our compassion for others (Pro 19:17, Deu 15:7-8, Pro 28:27, Mat 25:34-40, Heb 13:2-3). The Shunamite woman provided for GOD’s servant Elisha and his servant in their time of need, our Beloved LORD GOD provided for her and her household.
    • Our Awesome GOD goes before us, taking care of us and moving on our behalf (Deu 1:30-33). In HIS perfect timing, HE went before the Shunamite woman to the king, making her introduction to the king through the mouth of Gehazi (2 Kin 8:3-5).
    • All things work together for good, including those situations we consider so horrific that we wonder how our loving GOD could possibly be working in those situations (Rom 8:28). Our Beloved LORD GOD miraculously gave the Shunamite woman a son (2 Kin 4:14-17, Psa 127:3), and then he died (2 Kin 4:18-20). HE used her son’s death and miraculous restoration to life, as a testimony to the king, causing him to restore all that belonged to her, plus some (2 Kin 4:21-37, 2 Kin 8:6).
    • Our Beloved LORD GOD is a Restorer (Job 42:10-17, Joe 2:25-27). Our GOD restores that which is lost by giving it back, bringing it back, or putting it back to a former condition. At the advice of Elisha, the Shunammite woman temporarily moved herself, and her household to a neighboring land without famine, for the seven years. At the end of them, our Beloved LORD GOD not only restored what belonged to her, but also provided for her and her household for the next seven years (2 Kings 8:1-6).

The WORD of GOD surely took place concerning 2 kings in Aram (2 Kings 8:7-15). When Elijah was running for his life, full of fear, discouragement, and weariness, he came to the mountain of GOD, seeking the presence of GOD (1 Kin 19:1-9). After a discussion between Elijah and GOD, GOD told Elijah to return to Israel by way of the wilderness to Damascus, he would anoint Hazael king over Aram (1 Kin 19:15). In 2 Kings 8:7-15 the prophecy was fulfilled through Elijah’s servant Elisha. Ben-hadad the current king of Aram sent word by his servant Hazael to the prophet Elisha, inquiring if he would recover from his sickness. Though Ben-hadad could have recovered from his sickness, he would die at the hands of his servant Hazael (2 Kin 8:7-9). Our Beloved LORD GOD showed Elisha all the evil Hazael would do (2 Kin 8:10-15), from murdering his master, to the great evil he would do against Israel all of his days. Our GOD repays according to deeds done (Rom 12:19), and HE used Hazael to repay Israel, for all the evil they committed (1 Kin 19:10, Eze 7:9, Hos 4:9, Mat 16:27).

Before we move on to the two kings in Judah, there is a single powerful Scripture (2 Kin 8:19), tucked between the history of the two kings of Aram and the two kings of Judah. This Scripture simply states, “however, The LORD was not willing to destroy Judah, for the sake of David HIS servant, since HE had promised him to give a lamp to him through his sons always.” Our GOD promised David that one of his descendants would sit upon his throne forever (1 Chr 17:11-12). And that descendant is our Precious LORD and SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST (Luk 1:31-33). Though David had descendants who were evildoers, our GOD repaid or removed them, while retaining the throne of David in the city of Jerusalem. Our Beloved LORD GOD retains those who are HIS (Psa 4:3, Psa 145:20, Jud 1:24) and all that belongs to HIM (Zec 8:1-9).

We close this study with two descendants of David (Jehoram and his son Ahaziah), whom GOD removed, because they were wicked kings in Judah (2 Kin 8:16-29). Jehoram was the son of the righteous king Jehoshaphat (2 Chr 17:1-6), but he became wicked when he married king Ahab’s daughter and began to live like Ahab and all the evil kings in Israel (2 Kin 8:16-18). Jehoram and his wife Athaliah, raised their son Ahaziah, to also live wickedly (2 Kin 8:25-27). Through death, my Beloved LORD GOD removed Jehoram from reign after eight years (2 Kin 8:17, 2 Chr 21:5-20), and his son Ahaziah after one year (2 Kin 8:25-26). Our GOD removes evildoers (Psa 34:16, Psa 37:9-10), and throughout The BIBLE HE instructs us not to associate with evildoers (1 Kin 11:1-2, Psa 1:1, Psa 119:115, 1 Cor 15:33-34, 2 Cor 6:14-18), so that we will not be destroyed along with them (Jer 51:6, Jer 51:45, Rev 18:4).

In conclusion, though there are many mockers concerning the times we are living in (2 Pet 3:3-9, Jud 1:17-18), our GOD’s WORD will not fail, it will surely take place (Hab 2:2-3).

All Things Work Together For Good!

Precious Morsels 2 June 27, 2020And we know that GOD causes all things to work together for good
To those who love GOD
To those who are called according to HIS purpose
Romans 8:28

In 2 Kings 4:8-37, our Beloved LORD GOD tells us about a gracious Shunammite woman who provided food and lodging for HIS prophet Elisha. She did not do it for profit, she did not do it to get something in return, she did it because she perceived he was a man of GOD.

Elisha wanting to repay the Shunammite woman for her kindness, called her and asked what he could do for her, she basically told him “nothing” and departed. She indeed appeared to have everything, but the prophet’s servant noticed that she had no son, and her husband was an old man. Elisha called her back and told her that at this season next year she will be holding her own son, in her arms. And indeed, my GOD blessed her with a son that very next year.

One day after her son had grown into a young boy, he went out to the fields with his father, but began to experience a severe headache. The boy’s father instructed his servants to take the boy to his mother, where after a few hours he died. The Shunammite woman carried her dead son up to the room, she and her husband had built for the Elisha and his servant to sleep in. She placed her son on Elisha’s bed and then went to find Elisha. She found him and did not leave his side until he returned to her home with her. Elisha entered his room, closed the door behind him and prayed to our Beloved LORD GOD. When the boy’s life was restored, Elisha gave him back to his mother.

Why would our loving GOD allow this child to die in the first place? The Shunammite woman had not asked for him, though she loved him, and was very blessed to have him. And even though our Beloved LORD GOD restored this boy’s life, why would this faithful woman be allowed to experience such heartbreak?

Later, in 2 Kings 8:1-6, our Beloved LORD GOD tells HIS servant Elisha, that a severe famine would come up on the land of Israel where the Shunammite woman lived. And upon the advice of Elisha, she and her household temporarily moved to a neighboring land without famine, for seven years. At the end of seven years, she and her household returned, but she needed help from the king to get her home and field back. Just before she went to the king to appeal for her home and field, he heard about the death and restoration of her son’s life. Shortly after, she came to the king, he was told, “this is the woman whose son had died, and his life restored through the prophet Elisha.” Once she confirmed the events that actually happened to her son, the king appointed a certain officer to restore all that was hers, and all the produce of the field during the entire time of the famine. So, our Beloved LORD GOD not only restored what belonged to her, but also provided for her and her household for the next seven years.

Truly through the testimony of the Shunammite woman, we witness all things work together for good. Even a situation so horrific and hurtful, that in the midst of the suffering, would cause you to wonder how our loving GOD could possibly be working in that situation. And yet we see that HE did!

Be encouraged. If you love the LORD (which means both loving HIM and obeying HIS Will – John 14:15), indeed every situation, every circumstance in your life, HE is working out for good.

ABBA FATHER

ABBA FATHERBut when the fullness of the time came
GOD sent forth HIS SON, born of a woman, born under the Law
So that HE might redeem those who were under the Law
That we might receive the adoption as sons
Because you are sons
GOD has sent forth The SPIRIT of HIS SON into our hearts, crying, “ABBA! FATHER!”
Galatians 4:4-6

The word “Abba” (άββā NT:5) is actually an Aramaic word for “father.” It is found in only three places in The BIBLE (Mrk 14:36, Rom 8:15 and Gal 4:6). It is a title for GOD. We are first introduced to this word in The BIBLE during our Precious LORD JESUS CHRIST’s prayer in the garden of Gethsemane. Knowing how horrible HIS suffering will be, our Precious JESUS through great anguish is talking with our Beloved ABBA FATHER concerning HIS impending crucifixion for our salvation (Mrk 14:32-36).

Please note In Mark 14:36, Romans 8:15 and Galatians 4:6, the word “Abba” is always paired with the word “Father” (Pateér NT:3962, signifying a nourisher, protector, upholder). These two words together “Abba! Father!” expresses the love and intelligent confidence of the relationship, while indicating the deep trust between parent and child.

In Romans 8:14-17 and Galatians 4:4-6, our Beloved LORD GOD gives us a beautiful truth. When we are redeemed through the precious blood of our Precious JESUS CHRIST (1 Cor 6:20, 1 Pet 1:18-19), we are also adopted by our Heavenly FATHER (Eph 1:5). With redemption comes adoption.

Why is being adopted by GOD so significant? There are many reasons, but here are four good ones:
1. Our GOD’s kindness and compassion, is reflected in HIS being a Father of the fatherless (Psa 68:5), a helper for the orphan (Psa 10:14), and a support for the fatherless (Psa 146:9). But with adoption we become one of HIS own (Rom 8:17, Gal 3:26).
2. We are born again (1 Pet 1:23), not from the loins of man but from the will of GOD (Jhn 1:12-13, Jam 1:18). HE is love (1 Jhn 4:16) and HE demonstrated HIS enduring love through our redemption and adoption (Rom 5:8, 1 Jhn 4:9-10).
3. Though at different times, and in different ways, we have been rejected by man; we have been selected by GOD to be HIS own forever (Eph 1:4-8, Tit 2:13-14).
4. Our past sins have been blotted out (Isa 43:25, Col 2:14), and our old self (our former manner of life) is gone (Rom 6:1-7, Eph 4:22-24).

What is meant by “our old self”? The old self is our essential fallen character. That part of each one of us, that was alienated from GOD, hostile in mind and engaged in evil deeds (Col 1:21-22). But when through faith we surrendered our life to CHRIST (Rom 10:9-10, Col 3:3), that old self died spiritually, and the new self with a new heart was born, and sealed by The Holy SPIRIT of GOD (Eze 36:26-27, 2 Cor 1:21-22, 1 Jhn 3:24).

Are there times when we hold onto the old self? Yes, there are many, even some who are going through this study, are not walking in newness of life (Rom 6:4). They keep holding on to the things from their old life that has died (2 Cor 5:17). They continually look back, holding memories, burdens, and feelings from the past. Instead of giving them to our Beloved LORD GOD (Psa 55:22, Mat 11:28-30, 1 Pet 5:7). When one continues to look back at what was; it is like driving forward while looking in a rearview mirror. Your past remains clear, but your present and future are out of focus. And when one continues to drive forward while looking into the rearview mirror, they make no further progress. Our Beloved LORD JESUS reminds us to “remember Lot’s wife” (Luk 17:32). She was turned to a pillar of salt when she looked back toward Sodom (Gen 19:26).

Why was she turned to a pillar of salt? I asked our Beloved LORD GOD that very same question. HE told me she was disobedient. Like her family, she had been given specific instructions concerning their escape, which included not looking back (Gen 19:17). Her disobedience rendered her useless, unable to progress further. As people of GOD we are called to be salt (Mat 5:13). But when one is disobedient, they lose effectiveness as salt, becoming useless (incapable of acting or functioning effectively). Which leads to one becoming like a pillar — stationary, unchanging in condition, progressing no further (2 Pet 1:8)

How can one stop living in the past?
Surrender your life to JESUS CHRIST (Rom 10:9-10). To surrender your life is to recognize HIS Lordship or authority over your life. Acknowledging HIS redemption or purchase of your soul (1 Cor 6:20, Act 20:28, 1 Pet 1:18-19).
Purpose in your heart to KNOW GOD (Exd 33:13). Through studying The WORD of GOD (Ezr 7:10). It is only then you will get to know HIM (Psa 25:4, Psa 119:33-34); and get to know HIS ways, knowing what is right in HIS sight, able to be pleasing to HIM (Jhn 8:29, Eph 5:10, 1 Jhn 3:22).
Obey HIS WORD (Luk 6:46). It is only through obedience that we truly become children of GOD (1 Jhn 3:10) and brothers and sisters of JESUS (Mat 12:50, Luk 8:21).

Taking Up Arms

taking up arms for home defenseDo not be afraid of sudden fear

Nor of the onslaught of the wicked when it comes

For The LORD will be your confidence

And will keep your foot from being caught

Proverbs 3:25-26

Our Beloved LORD GOD forewarned us that in the last days times would be exceedingly difficult; hard to bear; perilous; troublesome; and dangerous. Those times would be so because of the extremely sinful condition of ungodly men (2 Tim 3:1-5).

Today we are currently living in the last days, and those perilous times have come upon us. So much so, that in the last few months, more Christians have begun to ask about the BIBLICAL perspective on:

  1. taking up arms (securing weapons), in order to defend their lives, their loved ones, and their homes
  2. taking the life of a perpetrator

Before we respond to what our Beloved LORD GOD says on these matters, there are four questions every Christian should carefully consider:

  1. Do you trust GOD?
  2. Do you trust HIS WORD?
  3. Do you trust in the power of HIS NAME?
  4. Do you trust HIS plan?

If your answer to any one of these questions is “I think so”, “I am not sure”, “No” then the following response will be of no value to you. And you are in a far more perilous place than you realize, both in this present life and the next life. This position may seem harsh, but it is truth, and we will take a moment to explain.

If you do not trust GOD, not trust in HIS WORD, then you will die (Jhn 8:241 Exd 3:14, Jhn 8:56-58). Why, because you are refusing to believe in The only ONE WHO can save you. We have as an example of the unbelieving Israelites who came out of the Egyptian exile (Deu 1:29-36, Heb 3:12-19). Our merciful GOD (Psa 145:8-9), repeatedly warns us that death is the outcome for anyone who trusts anyone or anything instead of HIM (Psa 135:15-18, Pro 11:28, Pro 14:12, Pro 28:26, Jer 17:5, Eze 33:13). HE also warns us that we will get exactly what we expect when we do not trust HIM, nothing (Jam 1:7).

However, if you trust GOD, you trust HIS WORD, and you trust in the power of HIS NAME, you will experience many blessings (Psa 32:10, Jer 17:7); your prayers will be answered (Psa 34:17, Psa 116:1-2); you will have peace in all circumstances (Isa 26:3, Jhn 14:27); and you will witness miracles (Psa 22:4-5, Dan 3:24-28, Dan 6:18-23); as did three women who had nothing in common but their trust in GOD, HIS WORD, and the power of HIS NAME. Pauline Jacobi a 92-year-old woman living in Dyersburg, Tennessee; Marion Chadwick, an owner of a small store in Frisco, Texas; Nayara Goncalves, a 20-year-old manager of a phone store in Boca Raton, Florida. All three women faced death by a robber holding a gun, pointed at each one of them. When a masked man pointed his gun at Marion and demanded money, she commanded him to leave her store in The NAME of JESUS. He demanded money again, she responded again for him to leave her store in The NAME of JESUS. He turned and walked out. When robbers pointed guns at Pauline and Nayara and demanded money in exchange for their lives, they began to speak with them about JESUS. Pauline’s gunmen wept as she spoke with him about JESUS. She then handed him all the money she had, $10. He kissed her on the cheek and departed. Nayara’s gunmen held his head down as she spoke about JESUS, admitting he was a Christian desperate to get money to pay his rent. He left Nayara with an apology, and none of the store’s money.

When you trust GOD, trust HIS WORD, and trust in the power of HIS NAME, you will also trust in HIS plans. This level of trust can come only by knowing HIM personally. And this begins with knowing through HIS WORD, HIS ways and HIS will. As reflected in the example of five male Christian missionaries from America. In 1956 these five men left their wives and children behind in an attempt to evangelize the Huaorani (Waodani) people of the tropical rain forest of Eastern Ecuador, in what was known as Operation Auca, The young son of one of the missionaries spotted a gun in his father’s plane and asked his father: If the Waodani attack, will you defend yourself? Will you use your guns? His father Nate Saint answered: Son, we can’t shoot the Waodani. They’re not ready for heaven… we are. Nate Saint, and the four other male missionaries were killed by a group of the Waodani tribe. But as a result of their deaths, the entire tribe eventually came to CHRIST.

Completely trusting our Beloved LORD GOD, means we completely trust HIM, HIS WORD, the power of HIS NAME, and HIS plans. There are countless more, but we introduced you to eight Christians who completely trusted GOD and know HIS WORD, which gave them understanding of HIS perspective. They didn’t meet violence with violence, they met violence with trust in HIM and HIS WORD. Their trust, changed the hearts, lives and souls of their attackers.

Our Precious LORD JESUS tells us in Matthew 5:38-39, “You have heard that it was said, ‘AN EYE FOR AN EYE, AND A TOOTH FOR A TOOTH.’ “But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. If anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, let him have your coat also. Whoever forces you to go one mile, go with him two. Give to him who asks of you, and do not turn away from him who wants to borrow from you.” HIS WORD is counter-intuitive to our thoughts and actions, and yet HE also tells us, “For MY thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways MY ways,” declares The LORD. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are MY ways higher than your ways and MY thoughts than your thoughts” (Isa 55:8-9).

Do not take up arms. Trust in The LORD. Weapons give you a false sense of security. Our Beloved LORD GOD will keep you secure (Pro 1:33).

 

O give us help against the adversary,

For deliverance by man is in vain.

Through GOD we shall do valiantly,

And it is HE WHO will tread down our adversaries.

Psalm 60:11-12

Sorcery

Pharmakeia 2But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers

And immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars

Their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone

Which is the second death

Revelation 21:8

There are many references in The BIBLE to sorcerer (Deu 18:10), sorcerers (Exd 7:11, Jer 27:9, Dan 2:2, Mal 3:5, Rev 21:8, Rev 22:15), sorcery (2 Chr 33:6, Gal 5:20, Rev 18:23), sorceries (Isa 47:9-12, Mic 5:12, Nah 3:4, Rev 9:21) or magic (Eze 13:18-20, Act 8:9-11, Act 19:19).  

Sorcery, magic, witchcraft is the same thing, and is evil in GOD’s sight. This practice is both detestable, and an abomination to HIM (Deu 18:9-13, 2 Chr 33:1-6). And those who practice such things will be judged by GOD HIMSELF, WHO will be a swift witness, bringing compelling evidence against them (Mal 3:5).

Sorcery takes two forms:

  1. The practice of sorcery, witchcraft or magic is to deceive by lies, manipulation and drugs (Exd 7:11, Jer 27:9, Eze 13:18-20, Dan 2:2, Act 8:9-11, Act 19:19, Rev 18:23).
  2. The use of drugs (whether prescribed, illegal, or magic potions) to satisfy the flesh by bringing the mind to an altered state (Gal 5:19-21, Rev 9:21, Rev 21:8, Rev 22:15). And the dispensing of drugs (druggists, pharmacists, or drug dealers) as demonstrated by the graphic above, in the first definition of “Pharmakeia” OT:5331.

The first form of sorcery is spoken of throughout the BIBLE. And with the global distribution of thousands of books, movies, games, etc., for Beauty and the Beast, Brave, Cinderella, Doctor Strange, Frozen, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Seventh Son, Snow White, The Chronicles of Narnia Trilogy, The Hobbit Trilogy… magic has become so widely accepted that many Christians are ensnared. They are deceived into thinking these movies are okay, because good magic always triumphs over evil magic. Failing to understand two things, first, any type of magic is sorcery, making all magic evil. And second our Heavenly FATHER has warned that much sorrow, grief, misery, trouble and affliction (woe) will come to those who call good what HE has called evil (Isa 5:20-24). In conclusion, our Beloved LORD GOD has commanded that sorcerers or witches should not be found among us (Deu 18:9-14), which means even the books, movies, games, etc. that contain them, should not be brought into our homes.

Numerous Christians are unaware that the use of drugs (whether prescribed, illegal, or used for magic potions) for one’s own gratification is sorcery. The non-medical application of prescription drugs is just as grave physically and spiritually as illegal drugs. When medications prescribed by a doctor or other medical professional are used in a way that was not intended for those medications to be used, abuse occurs. Many who abuse prescription drugs are deceived into thinking that taking prescribed drugs will not lead to addiction (a compulsive, ongoing, destructive behavior). Yet any drug which opens the mind to an altered state, opens that mind up to demonic activity. Countless people worldwide did not believe their prescribed medications to reduce anxiety, relieve stress or irritability, stop pain, stimulate the brain to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), or relieve certain symptoms while providing a feeling of well-being (marijuana), would lead to addiction. And yet it did. When legally prescribed drugs produce the same behavior as consummation of illegal drugs, or influence by magic potions; the mind is being controlled or influenced by something or someone else, this is sorcery. And any drug dealer who purposely provides drugs knowing they will alter the physical, mental and spiritual state of an individual, is a sorcerer.  

How would one know they are not taking legal medicine as prescribed? The following are the top signs of prescription drug addiction provided by Medical and Addiction Recovery Professionals:

  1. Continued use of the drug, even after the pain it was prescribed for has ceased.
  2. Complaining about vague symptoms to get more medication.
  3. Lack of interest in treatment options other than medications.
  4. Mood and behavior changes, such as becoming hostile, volatile, agitated or anxious.
  5. Secretive or deceitful behavior in order to obtain the drug, such as stealing prescriptions, forging them, “losing” them, having multiple prescriptions from more than one doctor or buying and selling them on the street.
  6. Using prescription pills prescribed for others.
  7. Physical withdrawal symptoms when doses are missed. Flu-like symptoms such as joint and muscle aches, night sweats and insomnia. In fact, any major increases and decreases in sleep are signs of prescription drug addiction.
  8. Acting extremely hyper or revved up, acting sedated, or acting stuporous (having slow or confused reactions, groggy).
  9. Using more than the recommended amount of medication.
  10. Developing a high tolerance so that more pills are needed for the same desired effect.
  11. Withdrawal from friends, family and society, especially if people close to you, say you have a problem.
  12. Financial problems associated with having to purchase more and more pills.
  13. History of drug addiction.
  14. Poor decision making in general.

Our Beloved LORD JESUS CHRIST calls us to pursue and acquire true wisdom (the ability to know what is true or right – Heb 5:14, Jam 1:5). True wisdom is only found in HIM and HIS WORD (Pro 2:1-8, Jam 3:17). Wisdom not from above is earthly and demonic (Jam 3:15), that is why HE warns us not to lean on our own understanding (Pro 3:5, 1 Cor 3:18-20); for doing so will also cause much sorrow, grief, misery, trouble and affliction (woe – Isa 5:21). So if you have completed this study and you have reservations, we ask that you will prayerfully study the Scriptures, and go back to the original language (Hebrew, Aramaic, or Greek), and see if what has been laid out in this study is so.

Now the deeds of the flesh are evident

Which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery

Enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions

Factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these

Of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you

That those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of GOD

Galatians 5:19-21

What Every Christian Life Should Look Like – 2 Kings 6:1-33

A Study in 2 KingsSo he went with them; and when they came to the Jordan, they cut down trees

But as one was felling a beam, the axe head fell into the water

And he cried out and said, “Alas, my master! For it was borrowed”

Then the man of GOD said, “Where did it fall?”

And when he showed him the place

He cut off a stick and threw it in there

And made the iron float

He said, “Take it up for yourself”

So he put out his hand and took it

2 Kings 6:4-7

In this BIBLE study of 2 Kings Chapter 6, our Beloved LORD GOD gives us a visual of what every Christian life should look like. As Christians, we are followers of JESUS CHRIST (Mat 16:24, Jhn 10:27); the people of GOD (Deu 14:2, Tit 2:14, 1 Pet 2:9); lights in this dark world (Mat 5:14-15); aliens (Heb 11:9-10, 1 Pet 1:11). We are in this world, but we are not of this world (Jhn 17:14-18), so we do not:

  • look like this world (2 Chr 6:41, Psa 132:9, Isa 61:10, Rom 13:12-14, Gal 3:27)
  • think like this world (1 Ths 5:8, Col 3:1-3, Php 3:18-20, Rom 8:5-8, Mat 13:22)
  • behave like this world (Psa 51:6, Mat 6:2-8, Jhn 13:34-35, Eph 5:1-3, 1 Pet 2:12)
  • speak like this world (Pro 12:18, Eph 4:29, Eph 5:4, Col 3:8-9, Col 4:6, Jam 5:12)

What is meant by “this world”? This world is the place where Satan temporarily rules (1 Jhn 5:19, 2 Cor 4:4, Jhn 16:11, Jhn 12:31). It resides in the souls of ungodly men, who are hostile against GOD and all that belongs to HIM (Luk 11:53-54, Act 26:9, Rom 8:7, Col 1:21, 1 Ths 2:14-16) It is an evil, organized, unseen realm under Satan (Eph 6:12), operating through unbelieving people who are opposed to GOD (Eph 2:1-3, Jud 1:15-16).

What is meant by “aliens”? Aliens by definition are people residing in a place where they do not have citizenship or permanent residency. Aliens are strangers (Heb 11:13); sojourners―a person who resides temporarily in a place (Gen 47:9, Psa 39:12).

Who are the people of GOD? We were purchased by our GOD (Act 20:28, Rev 5:8-10, Jhn 1:29), and transferred from the authority of Satan (Col 1:13). We operate in both the seen world (physical, natural, temporal―1 Cor 5:9-11, 1 Jhn 2:15-17), and the unseen world (eternal, spiritual―2 Cor 4:18, 1 Cor 2:14-16).

Background:

  • 2 Kings 6:1-3. By way of reminder from the BIBLE study in 2 Kings Chapter 2 (One Taken One Doubly Anointed), our Beloved LORD GOD anointed Elisha to replace Elijah as HIS prophet (1 Kin 19:16). On the day Elijah was taken up to heaven, Elisha received the authority of Elijah’s ministry. And he begin to preside over the various companies of prophets who lived in Jericho near the Jordan River (2 Kin 2:5-7), Bethel (2 Kin 2:3), and Gilgal (2 Kin 4:38). The number of prophets who lived in Jericho had increased to the point, they had outgrown their current facility. So they sought Elisha’s permission to go to the Jordan River and build a new facility there (2 Kin 6:1-3).
  • 2 Kings 6:8. The king of Aram (Syria) was Ben-hadad (2 Kin 6:24). He is the king that attempted to besiege Samaria (the Capital of Israel before) before by taking 32 different Kings with him to fight against Samaria (1 Kin 20:1). Our Beloved LORD GOD intervened and Ben-hadad was soundly defeated twice since he thought our Beloved LORD GOD could only defeat him and his army in the mountains and not in the valley (1 Kin 20:2-30). After our Beloved LORD delivered king Ben-hadad into the hands of king Ahab of Israel, king Ahab let king Ben-hadad go, allowing Aram to continually raid and war against Israel.
  • 2 Kings 6:9. The king of Israel is still Jehoram (aka Joram) the ungodly king, and was in constant disobedience to the WORD of The LORD. We first became acquainted with Jehoram during our study in 2 Kings Chapter 3. Jehoram is the son of king Ahab, of Israel (2 Kin 3:1), and younger brother of king Ahaziah (2 Kin 1:17). Jehoram, like all who are disobedient and unbelieving, though he had witnessed attesting miracles from the true GOD in Israel, he still walked in sin and unbelief (2 Kin 6:31). His sin caused the nation of Israel to continue in sin and hostility to GOD. Consequently, the nation was enduring two severe punishments, besiegement by its enemies (Deu 28:52), and famine (2 Kin 6:24-25). The famine was so severe because of the besiegement, people were eating their own children (2 Kin 6:26-30) as forewarned by our Beloved LORD GOD (Deu 28:53-57).       

 Points to Consider:

  • 2 Kings Chapter 6, reveals our relationship with our Beloved SHEPHERD (Psa 23:1, Psa 100:3, Jhn 10:14):
    1. Our GOD will go with us as demonstrated by Elisha accompanying the prophets to build a new home (2 Kin 6:3-4). HE will never leave us or forsake us (Heb 13:5-6), HE is with us always (Psa 46:7, Isa 41:10, Mat 1:23, Mat 28:20), as HE was with Joseph (Gen 39:2-3, Gen 39:21-23), Moses (Exd 3:12, Exd 33:14), Joshua (Deu 31:23, Jos 1:5), and Paul (Act 18:9-10, 2 Tim 4:16-17).
    2. Our GOD restores that which is lost (2 Kin 6:5-7, Eze 34:11-16, Luk 19:10).
    3. Our GOD reveals hidden matters to HIS own (2 Kin 6:8-14, 2 Kin 6:31-33, Gen 18:17-22, Psa 25:14, Mat 11:25-27, Jhn 15:14-15, Jhn 16:13).
    4. Our GOD grants HIS servants requests (2 Kin 6:17-20, Psa 116:1, Jhn 14:13-15, 1 Jhn 3:22, 1 Jhn 5:14-15).
  • Our Beloved LORD GOD uses Elisha’s actions to give us a visual demonstration of what every Christian life should look like, as a faithful follower, or true Christian:
    1. We have a personal or one-on-one relationship with JESUS CHRIST (Jhn 14:6, 1 Jhn 5:20). Elisha was identified as a “man of GOD” who stood before HIM, indicating his personal relationship with our GOD (2 Kin 5:8, 2 Kin 3:14). A personal relationship with our Beloved LORD GOD, comes only when we abide in HIM and HIS WORD through faith (Jhn 14:23), leading to an obedient life (Gal 2:20, Jud 1:24).
    2. We continually speak with GOD (1 Ths 5:17). We listen to and obey the Voice of GOD (1 Sam 3:9-10), even if it seems foolish. Elisha, Moses, Gideon and Ananias demonstrated listening to the voice of our Beloved LORD, appearing to do foolish things, which led to miraculous outcomes (2 Kin 6:6-7, 2 Kin 4:40-41, Exd 15:22-25, Jdg 7:2-8, Act 9:10-15). We speak with HIM concerning all things (Col 4:2, Php 4:6, Eph 6:18, Jhn 11:41-42, Luk 18:1, Luk 6:12, Luk 5:16, Mrk 6:46), as Elisha did when he asked that the eyes of his servant be opened, and the eyes of the army of Aram be closed (2 Kin 6:17-20).
    3. We rely on GOD and HIS WORD, seeing the unseen. We walk by our faith, our firm persuasion (Heb 11:1) not by appearance (2 Cor 5:7), as shown by Elisha when the city he was in was surrounded by Aram’s army (2 Kin 6:15-17, Isa 11:3, 2 Cor 4:18, Heb 11:1, Heb 11:27).
    4. We walk in love for everyone, which includes compassion for our enemies (Rom 12:20-21, Rom 5:6-10, Luk 6:32-36, Mat 5:43-48), as reflected through Elisha’s actions toward the army of Aram (2 Kin 6:21-23).
    5. Our character reflects The Presence of GOD in our lives (Jhn 15:1-8, 1 Cor 13:13, Gal 5:16-25, 1 Jhn 3:10-11, 1 Jhn 4:7-8), as demonstrated by Elisha’s willingness to go with the company of prophets to the Jordan River (2 Kin 6:1-5, Jhn 13:35, Col 1:3-4).

If you were of the world, the world would love its own

But because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world

Because of this the world hates you

John 15:18-19

Discerning the Times

Red skies in OhioThe Pharisees and Sadducees came up, and testing JESUS
They asked HIM to show them a sign from heaven.
But HE replied to them
When it is evening, you say, ‘it will be fair weather, for the sky is red’
And in the morning, ‘there will be a storm today, for the sky is red and threatening’
Do you know how to discern the appearance of the sky
But cannot discern the signs of the times?
An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign
And a sign will not be given it, except the sign of Jonah
And HE left them and went away.
Matthew 16:1-4

In this passage of Scripture we saw religious leaders wanting JESUS to prove that HE was indeed the Messiah sent by GOD, by providing a miracle from heaven (such as when fire came down from heaven to the earth, proving Elijah was the prophet sent by The true GOD in Israel (1 Kings 18:36-39).

Our Beloved LORD JESUS WHO had already performed many miracles up to this point, had provided sufficient proofs that HE was WHO HE claimed to be. Yet these religious leaders still did not believe in HIM. Knowing that sufficient proof of the truth would never be enough for hardened and unbelieving hearts, HE simply stated “An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign; and a sign will not be given it, except the sign of Jonah.” HIS statement to the unbelieving religious leaders was expounded upon in Matthew 12:39-41:

But HE answered and said to them,
An evil and adulterous generation craves for a sign
And yet no sign will be given to it but the sign of Jonah the prophet
For just as JONAH WAS THREE DAYS AND THREE NIGHTS IN THE BELLY OF THE SEA MONSTER
So will The SON of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth
“The men of Nineveh will stand up with this generation at the judgment, and will condemn it
because they repented at the preaching of Jonah
and behold, something greater than Jonah is here

The Pharisees and Sadducees did not believe in our Beloved LORD JESUS CHRIST, doubting that HE spoke absolute truth. To this very day, unbelievers doubt the BIBLE as being both absolute (100% true with no exceptions-Psa 119:160, Jhn 17:17) and infallible (always perfect, always accurate, no errors – Psa 19:7). And because of their unbelief, unbelievers will:
Test or question the truth, not because they want to learn, but for the purpose of discrediting it (Luk 11:16, Mat 12:38–42, Luk 16:27-31). Those who reject the truth will always be deceived (1 Kin 18:36-39, Rev 13:11-14 Mal 4:5, Mat 17:10:13, 2 Ths 2:10-12).
Mock the truth, choosing to ridicule rather than earnestly search for it (Php 3:17–19, 2 Tim 4:3-4, 2 Pet 3:3-7, Jud 1:18). Insulting the truth rather than clinging to it, will always lead to destruction (2 Chr 36:15-17, Pro 1:20-33, 2 Ths 1:8-9).
Ignore or reject the truth, as they are not willing to turn from their evil ways. They reject both HIM (Heb 12:25-28) and HIS messengers (Zec 7:11-14). Which leads to both physical (Luk 17:26-27, Gen 7:17-23, 2 Pet 2:5) and spiritual death (Rev 21:8).

Only through The BIBLE (The WORD of GOD), can we discern (understand or recognize) the times we are currently living in, and understand what we should do (1 Chr 12:32). Discernment of the times we are currently living in, brings:

  1. Knowledge of what we should do (1 Ths 5:1-8), and what type of people ought we to be (2 Pet 3:14-15).
  2. Insight through both The SPIRIT of GOD and The WORD of GOD, enables us to see and clearly understand people, circumstances, and events all around us (Psa 119:99-100, Isa 41:20, Dan 11:33, Dan 12:10, 1 Cor 2:14-16).
  3. Watchfulness that keeps us from being caught off-guard; unprepared; asleep (Mat 24:42-44, Mrk 13:32-37, Luk 12:35-40, Rom 13:11).
  4. Peace which surpasses all understanding (Php 4:7), the peace which GOD gives (Jhn 14:27). We are not filled with fear like those who have no discernment (Luk 21:25-26), instead we should be filled with expectation (Isa 26:3, 2 Ths 3:16).

Just one final point, fully understanding that we are in the very last days does not mean we should give up and quit living. We should do quite the opposite, following the lead of our Beloved SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST. Knowing that HIS departure from this life was near, HE did not quit, HE continued to minister until HIS very last breath (Jhn 13:1-20, Jhn 19:28-30).

But what about the non-ministry part of our lives, how should we live, knowing that time is short? We will answer this in two parts. First, we should live wisely (Psa 90:12). You might be wondering what it means “to live wisely or have a heart of wisdom.” It means to understand our lives are fleeting (Job 14:1-2, Psa 144:4, Jam 4:14), therefore being careful how we live (Pro 19:16, Eph 5:15-17), because we know we will appear before the judgment seat of CHRIST, and give an account of how we lived (2 Cor 5:10). Second, every part of your life should be ministry. To minister means to serve, to provide, take care of, to distribute, to do the things necessary to sustain life. Whether it is physical life, emotional life or spiritual life, we are each called to minister throughout our lives.

But when these things begin to take place
Straighten up and lift up your heads
Because your redemption is drawing near

Then HE told them a parable
Behold the fig tree and all the trees
As soon as they put forth leaves
You see it and know for yourselves that summer is now near
So you also, when you see these things happening
Recognize that the Kingdom of GOD is near
Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away
Until all things take place
Heaven and earth will pass away
But MY WORDS will not pass away

Luke 21:28-33

When GOD Allows the Outside to Reflect the Inside – 2 Kings 5:1-27

A Study in 2 KingsAnd HE was saying,

That which proceeds out of the man, that is what defiles the man

For from within, out of the heart of men proceed the

Evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries

Deeds of coveting and wickedness, as well as

Deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride and foolishness

All these evil things proceed from within

And defile the man

Mark 7:20-23

In this BIBLE study of 2 Kings Chapter 5, our Beloved LORD GOD focuses on two men, Naaman (2 Kin 5:1-19) and Gehazi (2 Kin 5:20-27). Within the study of these two men, are nine powerful lessons for each one of us.

As we began to look at Naaman and Gehazi, we learn in 2 Kings 5:1 that Naaman was:

  • captain of the Aramean (Syrian) army
  • highly regarded and respected by his master, the King of Aram; because by him our GOD gave victory to Aram
  • a valiant (courageous, determined, successful) warrior
  • a leper

From the study in 2 Kings Chapter 4, as well as 2 Kings 5:20, we are only told that Gehazi is the servant of Elisha the man of GOD.

Before we continue with this BIBLE study, let’s stop and address its title, “When GOD Allows the Outside to Reflect the Inside.” There are two types of leprosy:

  • Physical leprosy a progressive infectious disease caused by a particular bacteria that attacks the skin, flesh, nerves, etc.; it is characterized by nodules, ulcers, white scaly scabs, deformities, and the eventual loss of feeling in the affected parts of the body. When left untreated it causes death.
  • Spiritual leprosy a progressive hardening of the heart caused by ongoing, unrepentant sin. This sin causes gradual insensitivity to the promptings of The Holy SPIRIT, deafness to the voice of GOD, lack of thirst for the presence of GOD, absence of hunger for the WORD of GOD, and no remorse for sinning against GOD. This unholy progression makes spiritual leprosy as menacing to the soul as physical leprosy is to the body.

When left untreated, long-term physical leprosy is easily detected in the smell and appearance of the body; whereas long-term spiritual leprosy is reflected in the thought processes, attitude, and behavior of affected individuals.

Naaman was a physical leper. His body was cleansed from the leprosy when he humbled himself and followed the instructions given to him by Elisha (2 Kin 5:9-14). Afterwards, his soul was also cleansed when he both believed and confessed “there is no God in all the earth, but in Israel” (2 Kin 5:15). Naaman being made whole, determined within his heart, to serve only our Beloved LORD GOD, so he sought forgiveness when he had to go with his master the King of Aram into the house of the false god Rimmon as his aide (2 Kin 5:18-19).

Gehazi was a spiritual leper. And his spiritual leprosy was revealed through his actions (2 Kin 5:20-26). Gehazi’s heart of greed (which is a heart of idolatry-Col 3:5) would be revealed to everyone, when he suddenly was covered with leprosy (2 Kin 5:27). His love for money caused him to covet the treasure Naaman had brought with him as payment for his healing. Which led to him lying to both Naaman (2 Kin 5:22) and Elisha (2 Kin 5:25) to get some of it. But like Ananias and Sapphira, he would soon discover he was not lying to man, but to GOD (Act 5:1-10). Gehazi’s sin of greed/idolatry, like Achan (Jos 6:17-19, Jos 7:1-26) and Judas Iscariot (Jhn 12:4-6, Mrk 14:3-10, Mat 26:6-16, Psa 109:4-20) before him, not only affected him, but also his descendants (2 Kin 5:27).     

Are there other physical and spiritual lepers in The BIBLE who were made whole or revealed? Yes, there are:

  • Two physical lepers who humbled themselves before our Precious LORD JESUS CHRIST, were made whole:
    • A Jewish leper (Luk 5:12-14)
    • A Samaritan leper (Luk 17:11-19)
  • Two spiritual lepers whose diseased hearts were revealed through physical leprosy:
    • Miriam’s heart of envy, led her to criticize and disparage GOD’s chosen leader, her younger brother Moses. Her judgment for speaking against GOD’s leader, was seven days outside the camp cut off from the rest of Israel, until both her heart and body were healed (Num 12:1-16).
    • King Uzziah’s heart was full of pride, causing him to try and force himself into a place that was not his to have. He spent the rest of his life with leprosy, cut off from the house of The LORD (2 Chr 26:16-21).  

Lessons within the Lesson:

  • All things work together for good (2 Kin 5:2-4, Rom 8:28). The captivity of a little girl from Israel brought healing and salvation to a man of valor from Aram.
  • HE can use any messenger (2 Kin 5:3-4, Luk 19:37-40). The message of a prophet in Israel with a gift of healing through a little Israeli servant girl, was heard and received.
  • It’s not about you (2 Kin 5:5-7, Gen 45:5-8, Deu 9:4-6, Act 16:25-31). There are times when things good or bad happen around us, or to us, but we must not lean to our own understanding about the event(s) taking place (Pro 3:5), we must trust GOD. Perhaps we are not the reason but the instrument.
  • GOD knows (2 Kin 5:3, 2 Kin 5:8, Heb 4:12). Absolutely nothing is hidden from our Beloved LORD GOD, there is no where we can hide our thoughts, actions or deeds from HIM, HE sees and knows it all (Psa 90:8, Psa 139:1-12, Jer 23:24, Eze 8:7-12).
  • Healing comes with humility (2 Kin 5:9, 2 Kin 5:11-14). When we humble ourselves before our loving, compassionate and gracious GOD, HE has promised we will be healed (2 Chr 7:14), our sorrow turned into joy (Jam 4:8-10), and our heads lifted up (Psa 3:3).
  • A true servant of GOD will never distract from HIS glory (2 Kin 5:10-11, Psa 115:1). Our heart must be humble, like our Precious LORD JESUS CHRIST, HE came as a servant (Mrk 10:45) who never tried to take honor for HIMSELF (Php 2:5-8).
  • GOD’s gifts are not for sale (2 Kin 5:15-16, Act 8:18-20). Like Naaman, we must completely understand that it is GOD at work by HIS servants (Act 19:11). We have freely received from HIM to build up HIS Church and expand HIS Kingdom, we must freely give (Mat 10:7-8).
  • GOD reveals men’s hearts (2 Kin 5:20, 1 Cor 4:5) as well as all things done in secret (2 Kin 5:21-26, Luk 12:2-3, 1 Tim 5:24-25). See comment on bullet point 4).
  • GOD will judge those secrets (2 Kin 5:27, Rom 2:16). Each one of us must stand before the judgment seat of CHRIST (2 Cor 5:10), and give account for everything we did in our bodies (Ecc 3:17, Ecc 11:9, Ecc 12:14).

                                                                                              

And HE said to them

You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of men

But GOD knows your hearts

For that which is highly esteemed among men

Is detestable in the sight of GOD     

Luke 16:15