Second Kings 5 Commentary
The greedy and consequently sinful Gehazi; the army commander who converts after his miraculous healing; the evangelist maid who started it all; the unbelieving kings; and the impeccable Elisha. There are many storylines in this chapter.
Our first stop is at Namaan’s house. The gift of healing isn’t as commonplace as many TV shows want us to believe. However, every saint must know there is a healer somewhere. Our task is therefore very simple: point the sick to the Healer. It is a task that our heroine maid performs to perfection. Envious.
Protocol demanded that the army commander got clearance before taking off for Samaria. Again protocol demanded that the army general report his presence to the King of Israel. Both are done but what a mess of a situation!
The King of Aram thinks of the LORD as the God of Israel who the king of Israel should be very familiar with. Ideally, this should be the case but the king of Israel is very far from the LORD. What a shame!
Elisha intervenes and Namaan finds himself at the door of the prophet’s house. However, Namaan is not impressed with the simplicity of the healing process. We would guess Namaan also thinks of the prophet as being rude by not coming out to perform the healing rituals. Yet it’s the simple process, coming from a simple but godly man, on recommendation from yet another simple maid, which brings healing on Namaan. This kind of healing and this kind of prophet can only come from the Creator God. Namaan converts.
Namaan had brought with him a handsome fee for divination. But the godly Elisha isn’t going to behave like a pagan spiritist. He declines the offers. Gehazi has other plans. The love of money is the root of all evil, Gehazi should have known better. His career seems to have ended here. Greediness won the day.
This chapter has many characters: Elisha, Gehazi, the king of Israel, and the maid. All these are children of Abraham who should know better. On the other side are Namaan, Namaan’s servants, Namaan’s wife, and the king of Aram. These are idol worshippers and very little is expected of them. Yet they all display more faith than both Gehazi and the king of Israel. They are ready to give it a try. The LORD uses their little faiths, at different stages of the story, to bring about Namaan’s healing and a change of heart.
It would be a shame if the household of faith carried within its ranks the likes of Gehazi and Israel’s king. They are bad marketing agents of the gospel. While Elisha’s focus is the glory of the LORD, Gehazi is looking at the gold and silver. He is a very bad Christian worker. While the maid is very much aware of the presence of the prophet in Samaria, the king of Israel is deliberately ignorant. The saint who deliberately forgets that they are walking with the Healer in Jesus Christ is a very bad Christian.
We are however encouraged by the courage and love of the maid. The proud and powerful of the world need this information. The LORD Jesus Christ heals. Will it be so difficult to ask someone to give it a try?
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