2 Kings 7

* Elisha prophesies plenty. (1,2) The flight of the Syrian army.

(3-11) Samaria plentifully supplied. (12-20)

1,2 Man's extremity is God's opportunity of making his own

power to be glorious: his time to appear for his people is when

their strength is gone. Unbelief is a sin by which men greatly

dishonour and displease God, and deprive themselves of the

favours he designed for them. Such will be the portion of those

that believe not the promise of eternal life; they shall see it

at a distance, but shall never taste of it. But no temporal

deliverances and mercies will in the end profit sinners, unless

they are led to repentance by the goodness of God.
3-11 God can, when he pleases, make the stoutest heart to

tremble; and as for those who will not fear God, he can make

them fear at the shaking of a leaf. Providence ordered it, that

the lepers came as soon as the Syrians were fled. Their

consciences told them that mischief would befall them, if they

took care of themselves only. Natural humanity, and fear of

punishment, are powerful checks on the selfishness of the

ungodly. These feelings tend to preserve order and kindness in

the world; but they who have found the unsearchable riches of

Christ, will not long delay to report the good tidings to

others. From love to him, not from selfish feelings, they will

gladly share their earthly good things with their brethren.
12-20 Here see the wants of Israel supplied in a way they

little thought of, which should encourage us to depend upon the

power and goodness of God in our greatest straits. God's promise

may be safely relied on, for no word of his shall fall to the

ground. The nobleman that questioned the truth of Elisha's word,

saw the plenty, to silence and shame his unbelief, and therein

saw his own folly; but he did not eat of the plenty he saw.

Justly do those find the world's promises fail them, who think

that the promises of God will disappoint them. Learn how deeply

God resents distrust of his power, providence, and promise: how

uncertain life is, and the enjoyments of it: how certain God's

threatenings are, and how sure to come on the guilty. May God

help us to inquire whether we are exposed to his threatenings,

or interested in his promises.

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