Monday, April 30, 2012


The king of Syria brought his entire army to Samaria to lay siege (see 2 Kings 6:24). The Syrian army strategically stopped any food from going into Samaria and soon conditions were desperate. People sold all they had for any scrap of food.

Samaria's king was horrified by what he saw happening. He laid all the blame on Elisha and sent a messenger to kill him. When the messenger arrived, Elisha's friends barred him from the prophet's dwelling. During the standoff the messenger shouted to Elisha, “The king said, ‘This disaster is from the Lord. Why should I wait for the Lord any longer?’” (6:33, NIV). In short, the king had no faith. He was convinced God had abandoned Samaria and that they had to act on their own.

What was Elisha's answer? "Hear the word of the Lord" (7:1). This is sage advice for any Christian facing a crisis. If your situation has gone beyond your control, you need to be reminded of God's Word.

Elisha told the messenger: "About this time tomorrow, a seah [five quarts] of flour will sell for a shekel [half an ounce of silver] and two seahs of barley for a shekel at the gate of Samaria" (7:1). In other words: "Do not surrender! Food will be in such abundance a mere shekel will buy all you can eat."

The messenger scoffed in disbelief: "Look, even if the Lord should open the floodgates of the heavens, could this happen?" (7:2). He knew Samaria's king was ready to surrender. But Elisha knew God was already on the move on their behalf and he wished to turn unbelief into faith.

At the time, four lepers sat starving in Samaria and they said to each other, "Why sit here and die? Let's go to the Syrian camp and beg for food. They'll either kill us or have mercy on us.”

As the lepers approached the Syrian camp, they realized the enemy had fled and left behind all their provisions. The lepers enjoyed a feast and after they had stuffed themselves, they ran to Samaria to tell the king.

Incredibly, the king did not believe them. He thought it was a trap laid for an ambush but the people inside the city heard about it and acted in faith: "The people went out and plundered the camp of the [Syrians]” (7:16).

Think of it! Samaria's king was less than a day away from surrendering to his enemy, yet God had already won the victory for him.

You may be on the brink of defeat but God wants to fulfill His promises to you. Hold on to His Word in faith.