Daily Thought for: 15th June
ELISHA: ‘DEAD RAISED TO LIFE AGAIN’
2 Kings 4. 18-37
The Shunammite learns that God is a life-giving God, for she who was barren
bore a son; cf. Rom. 4. 19-21. But the son died, so she will learn that
God is the God of resurrection also; cf. Heb. 11. 17-19. Her child had
survived the dangers of infancy, only to be cut down in childhood. It must
have been inexplicable to his mother. He had been given to her by the Lord
because of the kindness she had shown to His servant.
How often the Lords ways seem strange to us. Hopes may be suddenly blighted, prospects changed, loved ones snatched away. Yet Gods ways are always ordered by infinite love and wisdom.
She had lost her son, but not her faith, so she stirs herself to action. No preparation was made for the burial of the child. She anticipates his resurrection by laying him on Elishas bed, v. 21. She had not asked for a child, but she could not believe that he had been taken irretrievably from her. What a trial it was to her faith to know that Elisha was many miles away just when she needed him most. Her husbands words tested her faith still further. His thoughts could rise no further than moons and sabbaths, and he associated God with religious festivals and the observance of days. It will be well, she says to him, looking beyond the present trial and anticipating a happy return. Her response is the same to Elishas questions, v. 26. Faith can say in the darkest hour, It is well; cf. Rom. 8. 28. She had no doubt about the successful outcome of her errand, though she rightly felt that the servant and staff would be of no avail, so she would not leave Elisha. Nothing but the power of God brought in by one who was in touch with God would restore the dead child. Only contact with the living Lord can give lifenot a symbol nor a sacramentand also sustain that life when it has been received. Her persistence and faith were to be rewarded. Elisha prayed to the Lord, for He alone can raise the dead. He identified himself with the one for whom he prayed, vv. 34, 35. The wrestling of faith and the agony of prayer won the day; cf. Heb. 11. 35. The Shunammite showed no surprise at the miracle, for she believed in the God of resurrection and He did not disappoint her.