Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | July 27, 2015

“I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”

Today’s devotion comes from 2 Kings 4:38-44.

“38 When Elisha returned to Gilgal, there was a famine in the land.  As the sons of the prophets were sitting before him, he said to his servant, “Put on the large pot and boil stew for the sons of the prophets.”  39 Then one went out into the field to gather herbs, and found a wild vine and gathered from it his lap full of wild gourds, and came and sliced them into the pot of stew, for they did not know what they were.  40 So they poured it out for the men to eat.  And as they were eating of the stew, they cried out and said, “O man of God, there is death in the pot.”  And they were unable to eat.  41 But he said, “Now bring meal.”  He threw it into the pot and said, “Pour it out for the people that they may eat.”  Then there was no harm in the pot.

42 Now a man came from Baal-shalishah, and brought the man of God bread of the first fruits, twenty loaves of barley and fresh ears of grain in his sack.  And he said, “Give them to the people that they may eat.”  43 His attendant said, “What, will I set this before a hundred men?”  But he said, “Give them to the people that they may eat, for thus says the Lord, ‘They shall eat and have some left over.’”  44 So he set it before them, and they ate and had some left over, according to the word of the Lord.”   2 Kings 4:38-44.

———————————

“2 Great are the works of the Lord;
They are studied by all who delight in them.
3 Splendid and majestic is His work,
And His righteousness endures forever.
4 He has made His wonders to be remembered;
The Lord is gracious and compassionate.
5 He has given food to those who fear Him;
He will remember His covenant forever.”  Psalm 111:2-5.

Elisha’s miracle of feeding the people with only twenty loaves of barley and fresh ears of grain such that there were even left overs reminds us of Jesus’ similar miracle.  “Then He (Jesus) took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, He blessed them, and broke them, and kept giving them to the disciples to set before the people.  And they all ate and were satisfied;  and the broken pieces which they had left over were picked up, twelve baskets full.”  Luke 9:16-17.

And, Elisha’s miracle of making the poisonous stew edible reminds us more generally of Jesus’ miracles of healing.  “Jesus was going throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness among the people.”  Matthew 4:24.

Jesus abundantly gave food such that they all ate and were satisfied and there were even left overs filling twelve baskets.

Jesus abundantly healed such that it was reported He was “healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness among the people.”

Jesus abundantly proclaimed the gospel of the kingdom.  “Jesus was going throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom”.

In summary, today’s Scripture about Elisha points us to Jesus as summarized in John 10:10:  “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy;  I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”

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