2 Kings 4

2 Kings 4:38-5:27  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  59:09
0 ratings

2 Kings 4

Verses 1-7

Desperate need
A horrible outcome if she can’t pay
The Law said that if you couldn’t pay your debt you or your children could be taken to pay off the debt until the 7th year and then you would be released.
Exodus 21:1–11 ESV
1 “Now these are the rules that you shall set before them. 2 When you buy a Hebrew slave, he shall serve six years, and in the seventh he shall go out free, for nothing. 3 If he comes in single, he shall go out single; if he comes in married, then his wife shall go out with him. 4 If his master gives him a wife and she bears him sons or daughters, the wife and her children shall be her master’s, and he shall go out alone. 5 But if the slave plainly says, ‘I love my master, my wife, and my children; I will not go out free,’ 6 then his master shall bring him to God, and he shall bring him to the door or the doorpost. And his master shall bore his ear through with an awl, and he shall be his slave forever. 7 “When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she shall not go out as the male slaves do. 8 If she does not please her master, who has designated her for himself, then he shall let her be redeemed. He shall have no right to sell her to a foreign people, since he has broken faith with her. 9 If he designates her for his son, he shall deal with her as with a daughter. 10 If he takes another wife to himself, he shall not diminish her food, her clothing, or her marital rights. 11 And if he does not do these three things for her, she shall go out for nothing, without payment of money.
Deuteronomy 15:1–11 ESV
1 “At the end of every seven years you shall grant a release. 2 And this is the manner of the release: every creditor shall release what he has lent to his neighbor. He shall not exact it of his neighbor, his brother, because the Lord’s release has been proclaimed. 3 Of a foreigner you may exact it, but whatever of yours is with your brother your hand shall release. 4 But there will be no poor among you; for the Lord will bless you in the land that the Lord your God is giving you for an inheritance to possess— 5 if only you will strictly obey the voice of the Lord your God, being careful to do all this commandment that I command you today. 6 For the Lord your God will bless you, as he promised you, and you shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow, and you shall rule over many nations, but they shall not rule over you. 7 “If among you, one of your brothers should become poor, in any of your towns within your land that the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart or shut your hand against your poor brother, 8 but you shall open your hand to him and lend him sufficient for his need, whatever it may be. 9 Take care lest there be an unworthy thought in your heart and you say, ‘The seventh year, the year of release is near,’ and your eye look grudgingly on your poor brother, and you give him nothing, and he cry to the Lord against you, and you be guilty of sin. 10 You shall give to him freely, and your heart shall not be grudging when you give to him, because for this the Lord your God will bless you in all your work and in all that you undertake. 11 For there will never cease to be poor in the land. Therefore I command you, ‘You shall open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy and to the poor, in your land.’
She knows where to turn in her desperation
God cares for the widow and fatherless...
Deuteronomy 10:18 ESV
18 He executes justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the sojourner, giving him food and clothing.
Psalm 68:5 ESV
5 Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation.
this “jar of oil” may have been merely a small flask of anointing oil.
Now she must walk by faith even to the point of having to ask the neighbors for jars and no doubt having to explain herself to some of them.
On top of taking the step of faith to ask the neighbors for jars she now has to take an even bigger step of faith and pour out the very last of what she has into that first borrowed jar and hope that it works out like Elisha told her it would.
But please also note that Elisha tells her to close the door when she does this so that this miracle is a personal moment between her and God.
It is interesting that she would get as much oil as empty vessels she could gather. It reminds me of what Jesus said when He healed the 2 blind men...
Matthew 9:29 ESV
29 Then he touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith be it done to you.”
Please look at the results. She paid her debt and had enough for her and her kids to live on in the absence of her husband and their father.

Verses 8-17

Verses 18-31

Verses 32-37

This is very similar to how Elijah revived the woman’s son in 1 Kings 17.
In that chapter if you remember we have Elijah coming to the home of the widow in Zarephath who is making the last meal she can for herself and her son with the very last of the flour and oil she has, She tells Elijah that they are going to eat this last loaf of bread then die. Elijah tells her to make him some bread and then promises that the jar of flour and oil will continue to have just enough to make food everyday until it rains 3.5 years later. Then her son dies and we see Elijah raise him like Elisha does here...
1 Kings 17:17–24 ESV
17 After this the son of the woman, the mistress of the house, became ill. And his illness was so severe that there was no breath left in him. 18 And she said to Elijah, “What have you against me, O man of God? You have come to me to bring my sin to remembrance and to cause the death of my son!” 19 And he said to her, “Give me your son.” And he took him from her arms and carried him up into the upper chamber where he lodged, and laid him on his own bed. 20 And he cried to the Lord, “O Lord my God, have you brought calamity even upon the widow with whom I sojourn, by killing her son?” 21 Then he stretched himself upon the child three times and cried to the Lord, “O Lord my God, let this child’s life come into him again.” 22 And the Lord listened to the voice of Elijah. And the life of the child came into him again, and he revived. 23 And Elijah took the child and brought him down from the upper chamber into the house and delivered him to his mother. And Elijah said, “See, your son lives.” 24 And the woman said to Elijah, “Now I know that you are a man of God, and that the word of the Lord in your mouth is truth.”
Please notice that neither Elijah nor Elisha raised anyone from the dead. That was God’s work. They merely cried out to God for Him to do such an impossible task. They begged God to raise the dead, whereas Jesus commanded Lazarus to rise from the dead...
John 11:38–44 ESV
38 Then Jesus, deeply moved again, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone lay against it. 39 Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, “Lord, by this time there will be an odor, for he has been dead four days.” 40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?” 41 So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around, that they may believe that you sent me.” 43 When he had said these things, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out.” 44 The man who had died came out, his hands and feet bound with linen strips, and his face wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.”

Verses 38-41

If you remember from chapter 2 the sons of the prophets told Elisha that there was death in the water well and he threw salt in, this time they recognize that the stew is poisoned and again ask him to intervene.
2 Kings 1. The Purification of the Stew (38–41)

“There is death in the pot; how is the Church to meet it? I believe it is to imitate Elisha. We need not attempt to get the wild gourds out of the pot, they are cut too small, and ate too cunningly mixed up; they have entered too closely into the whole mass of teaching to be removed. Who shall extract the leaven from the leavened loaf? What then? We must look to God for help, and use the means indicated here. ‘Bring meal.’ Good wholesome food was cast into the poisonous stuff, and by God’s gracious working it killed the poison; and the Church must cast the blessed gospel of the grace of God into the poisoned pottage, and false doctrine will not be able to destroy men’s souls as it now does.” (Spurgeon)

Verses 42-44

The Law stated that the firstfruits were to be brought to the priests at the Temple to be offered to the Lord.
Leviticus 23:20 ESV
20 And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits as a wave offering before the Lord, with the two lambs. They shall be holy to the Lord for the priest.
The offering was to be eaten by the priests and their families before the Lord.
Numbers 18:13 ESV
13 The first ripe fruits of all that is in their land, which they bring to the Lord, shall be yours. Everyone who is clean in your house may eat it.
Deuteronomy 18:4–5 ESV
4 The firstfruits of your grain, of your wine and of your oil, and the first fleece of your sheep, you shall give him. 5 For the Lord your God has chosen him out of all your tribes to stand and minister in the name of the Lord, him and his sons for all time.
But because there was no place in Israel for this to take place this man from Baal-shalishah brought his offering to the man who most represented God in the land at the time.
And Elisha being a godly man shared that offering with those that needed to eat in the famine.
It has been pointed out by many that this story is a small type of Jesus feeding the 5,000 and later the 4,000.
Related Media
See more
Related Sermons
See more