2 Kings 5:1 – 6:7
1. Chapter 5. There are four important figures in this chapter: the captive maid, Naaman, Elisha and Gehazi. What lessons can we learn from each?
2. 6:1-7. Think about this incident in relation to Elisha’s position as a spiritual leader. Are there lessons here for the Christian church?
- 5:17. The idea in Naaman’s mind was that Jehovah, the God of Israel, could not be rightly worshipped except on Israelitish soil. His faith was still very imperfect, as verse 18 also shows.
- 5;22. ‘A talent of silver’: i.e., about seventy-five pounds, a very large sum to be asked for two young men of the sons of the prophets.
2 Kings 6:8 – 7:20
1. 6:8-23. Why was the young man afraid and why was the prophet not afraid? Have we learned the secret of the conquest of fear? Cf. Heb. 11:27.
2. Observe the severity of the siege, and the greatness of the faith that enabled Elisha to speak as he did in 7:1. How does the judgment that fell upon the unbelieving officer illustrate the punishment that will follow all willful unbelief? Cf. Mark 16:16b; John 3:36.
3. What lessons do you learn from the part played by the four lepers in this story?
- 6:25. ‘Ten pounds in silver was paid for the head of an ass and twelve shillings for a pint of doves ‘dung’ (Moffatt).
- 6:30, 31. Elisha appears to have been sustaining the hopes of the king and people by the promise of divine deliverance. The king’s faith now gave way, and he burned with anger against the prophet.
2 Kings 8 and 9
Today’s portion contains: (a) two incidents connected with Elisha’s ministry; (b) a brief summary of the reigns of two kings of Judah; (c) the story of the revolution under Jehu, through which the house of Ahab was destroyed.
1. 8:1-5. How does the first of these two incidents illustrate God’s watchful care over his own? Cf. Ps. 33:18-22; Rom. 8:28. In the second incident why did Elisha weep? Cf. Jer. 8:16-9:1; Luke 19:41-44.
2. Ponder the vivid story of the revolution, as given in chapter 9, noticing especially how it began, and the references to the word of God and its fulfillment. Cf. Heb. 10:31; 12:29; 2 Kings. 10:30.
3. Consider throughout the history of the kings of Israel and Judah the results of marriage alliances with those who are the enemies of God.
- 8:10. The sickness in itself was not fatal, but Elisha was given a vision of other things that would happen, which filled him with horror. Moffatt translates verse 11 thus: ‘The man of God’s face became rigid with horror, absolute horror.’
- Verse 13. Hazael was elated at the prospect of doing such deeds.
3. Verse 16. It is important to distinguish between Jehoram, son of Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, and Jehoram (or Joram), son of Ahab, king of Israel. Their reigns were in great measure contemporaneous.