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October 12, 2021 12:00 am
We wait until morning light punishment will overtake us application as we will be consumed by our own Jill, let us go tell the king's household. This is the lesson for Emre generation good is to be shared.
The message of Jesus Christ that you received is not to be warranted.
It is to be the grace of God that his shown into your heart is not to be retained is to be that had the power to make you useful forever, which would you give that water to others as well. Or would you keep quiet about your discovery well. The church is a far more important message of hope to share the gospel is a fountain of living water, but far too many believers are keeping the message of the gospel to themselves today on wisdom for the heart were in a passage from God's word that illustrates this. Stephen Devi is continuing through his series on Elisha were in second Kings six and seven with the message Stevens calling the sound of silence lead you to reseal was found that one morning when friends, family came to gather his things they found a room or home barren of creature comforts. This reclusive man stayed for the most part, alone and by himself and without little money he barely made it do and yet as they begin to search his home.
He eventually made it to the attic where they discovered to their great surprise, 246 violins he had hidden them in his attic. He had wrapped them in blankets and stuff them in drawers and to their utter amazement. They even discovered nearly 200 year old Stradivarius.
Can you imagine an obsession that would rob the world of such wonderful music so that these violins had been kept silent and secret entire life. I cannot help but think as I read things like that. What is the church doing to communicate to a starving world that Jesus Christ makes a difference. I fear we are doing more likely G we are hiding our violins in the attic. We are robbing the world of the music of grace.
What are we doing well. I think that question is put well.
In fact it's put in living drama in the book of second Kings. Let's go back to our study and pick up where we left off as Jeremiah takes us behind the scenes away from what would be center stage.
That is the war besieging of the year Manson shows us several scenes behind the horror of cannibalism for one an attempt on Elisha's life for another, and finally we are taking behind the scenes outside the city walls to observe for lepers who make an amazing discovery. Let's pick up the narrative in verse 24.
Now it came about after this Ben hey dad, king Veron gathered all his army and went up and besieged Samaria. I want to stop here because you stood students are going to pin me to some corner after the service and ask about the contradiction or apparent contradiction between verse 23 in verse 24. I will just in a couple of sentences say that I think the apparent contradiction can be handled simply by taking both forces at face value. Verse 23, which we studied last time tells us that the that the. The rating bands no longer came. Okay they did some time elapses between verse 23 verse 24, it might've been a day a month. It might've been years we we do not know but verse 24 tells us that Ben hey dad launches not a raiding party but an all out full scale, you are with his entire army. This time he comes and surrounds the capital city of the northern kingdom, Samaria, and he cuts off their food supply.
Let's look at the results verse 25 and there was a great famine in Samaria the whole day besieged, that is, they surrounded until a donkeys head was sold for 80 shekels of silver, and 1/4 of a cab. That's 2 quarts of dogs done for five shekels. Yuck. I will say any more than that, other than to tell you it's going to get a lot sadder worse. Verse 26 and is the king of Israel was passing by the wall.
A woman cried out to him saying how my Lord. Okay, he said if the Lord does not help you implied he isn't hoping you from where shall I help you from the threshing floor from the winepress, which are empty. By the way, and the king said to her, what is the matter with you. She answered this woman said to me, give your son that we may eat him today. We will eat my son tomorrow so we boiled my son and ate him and I said to her on the next day. Give your son that we may eat him, which she has hidden her son. He read this and you ask, is it possible for anyone to digress.
The point of committing such a terrible deed. It was possible here.
It may help to remember that in this day and idolatrous nations among people who would sacrifice Hilburn to please their gods children were given a very low view. In fact, you can take that to say, even in this day where the gospel of Jesus Christ is absent. Life verse 30 came about that when the king heard the words of the woman that he tore his clothes.
Now he was passing by on the wall and the people looked, and behold, he had sackcloth beneath his body, which is interesting to me.
The implication here is that outside the exterior were the kingly roads that he wore.
He looked like any normal king but underneath he is wearing the standard garb of a man confessing and repenting before God. He is wearing sackcloth. It's interesting how this passage is tied together with people keeping secrets you have lepers who will keep a secret that will save the city and here you have a king who is as the king should repenting as the leader of the people before God for forsaking him. And yet he's keeping it a secret and silent. He hasn't gone public with his confession. People are shocked as he rips his clothing to see underneath sackcloth truth was his halfhearted repentance was not repentance and it becomes obvious. In verse 31 then he said, may God do so to me, and more also, if the head of Elisha the son of two fast remains on him today. In other words, let's kill the prophet and with that we are introduced to another behind the scenes lock were taken to the home of Elisha, who by way of Revelation knows that the executioner is on his way to behead for the sake of time, let me at least say briefly that the king is has announced an execution of of the best friend that Samaria at this moment had if there was anybody that can lead them to safety they can speak for God that can help them get out of this predicament. It would be the very man that he is ordering his death over and and and he is on his way and the king is coming closely behind. I couldn't help it. Read this and think about the execution of of Jesus Christ by means of crucifixion. He was the best friend the world could ever have. He was the friend of sinners in the very city Jerusalem that he wept over would be the city that would raise their voices and shout crucify him see we have nothing to do with the word from God, and now they will set out to kill the messenger of God. Look at chapter 7 verse one and Elisha said by the way the king is arrive the royal officers and the elders that are there. Listen to the word of the Lord. Thus says the Lord tomorrow about this time a measure of fine flour shall be sold for a shekel and two measures of barley for a shekel in the gate of Samaria.
This is startling news in the royal officer on whose hand the king was leaning answered the man of God and said, behold, if the Lord should make Windows in heaven.
Could this thing that he said, behold, you shall see it with your own eyes, but you shall not that this officer represents to the Bible student the voice of rational unbelief of the royal officer at this moment makes great sense and Elisha at this moment makes absolutely no sense. Royal officer said luck of God open the windows of heaven that still didn't solve any problem. We don't have flour and barley.
Surely they could never happen. Just can't be done.
I'd never seen God do that before in my life.
So the rationalist says God certainly won't do it now. By the way, I can't help but make an analogy to the church year as well. The model of a dying church has always been.
We've never done it that way.
Be in the other rather encouraging counterpart. We've always done it this way. I have to admit to you that my mind and heart have been stretched out recently. Two weeks ago, two weekends ago we sponsored a 10 mile run.
You should've seen it. We had banners flying outside here.
We had that the dedicated team that put this thing together to try to introduce our church to a community that would never have come to a service, but they introduce this to all the running clubs. They garnered everything from police to stop traffic, as they ran out of the parking lot and came back over the finish line. They garnered corporate sponsors and there were tables lining the front parking lot, loaded down with huge containers of gourmet coffee and boxes of fresh bagels and there were piles of bananas and and I noticed they had gotten Krispy Kreme the donate anything.
I was a little disappointed about that will fix that next year and all they asked me to do was just pray before the race began just to pray for a beautiful day and thank the Lord and was very generic at the end they came back across the finish line and gathered around and we had a little awards ceremony and they asked me to say just a few words, and I was able to tell them that this church is glad to be part of what you're doing and what you enjoy and we also believe that life is like a race and we want to help you learn how to run that one. Basically, that was it. You will believe that many runners came up and said what what a first-class run great traffic control. You should've seen it when the policeman out here when people would come across the finish line. The speakers would would bellow out their name here comes John down the traffic would stop. The policeman was great is better in Sunday's I was out there say men the cars are backed up all the way down here to the intersection it was great.
I can just imagine somebody in our car. I went to church.
Up to now, what an interesting way to communicate the truth for me it was brand-new. I think hidden in the words of this unbelieving Jew are the words of God is going to save us.
There's going to have to be a little bit better conventional method uses going to have to take time to overthrow Samaria.
There's no way to 24 hours from now were going to have flour and barley impossible. Elisha prophesies in verse two that he will see it, but he will not enjoy the final scene where we really want to focus Texas outside the city walls away from the panic of the city and the horrible tales of cannibalism and even from the profit and and it takes us by way of this inspired up pen to watch for lepers who make this amazing discovery of the text tells us in verse three that they are in the entrance of the gate that is they are on the outside of the city walls.
It was common in this day according to law and fact that lepers were not allowed to enjoy life from within the city and so historians tell us that lepers would often build little crude huts just outside the main gates of the city and they would beg a further food. I also found it very interesting that many of the rabbis of old believed and taught that these four lepers were none other than Gary Hayes.
I the former servant of Elisha who was stricken with leprosy in the other three lepers were his three sons not want to climb into this scene here and follow these lepers closely. I'm just going to read a few verses, though explain themselves. Let's start with verse three now there were four leprous men at the entrance of the gate and they said to one another.
Why do we sit here until we die if we say we will enter the city and the families in the city, and we shall die. There, if we sit here we die. Also now therefore common let us go over to the camp of the Aramaeans if they spare us, we shall live if they kill us.
We shall but die and they arose at twilight to go to the camp of the Aramaeans when they came to the outskirts of the camp of the Aramaeans, behold, there was no one there, for the Lord because the Army of the Aramaeans to hear the sound of chariots and sound of horses, even the sound of a great army so that they said to one another, behold, the king of Israel is hired against us. The kings of the Hittites and the kings of the Egyptians to come upon us.
Therefore, they arose and fled in the twilight and left there tends and their horses and donkeys. Even the camp just as it was an glad for their lives. They entered one tent ate and drank and cared for their silver and gold and closing and went and hid them and they returned and entered another tenant and carried from there. Also went. Can you imagine being one of these lepers. Your life is been one scrap for food after another.
You beg for food outside the city gates your your closing is as nothing more than a collection of rags.
You have nothing that you could call your own, except for maybe some little hot.
This can was a baggers paradise somewhere in all of this excitement. One of them. Maybe, maybe two of them stopped in and said hey, wait a second. Phyllis why what what what is was wrong. Well I was you know I was thinking about our countrymen in Samaria tonight there will be more people dying more children sacrifice this. This is right. What would you do if you found a Stradivarius to hide it away and keep it a secret or would you allow the world. Here is verse nine then they said to one another. We are not doing right like the King James translation.
We do not, well, we do not, well, this day is a day of good news, but we are keeping silence. If we wait until morning light punishment will overtake us. The implication is we will be consumed by our own kilt now therefore come, let us go and tell the king's household. This is the point. This is the lesson for every generation.
Good news is to be shared. The message of Jesus Christ that you received is not to be hoarded.
It is to be heralded the grace of God that has shown the into your heart is not to be retained.
It is to be reflected Stradivarius is to be played now. I think it's ironic here outcast, despised men were chosen to announce the wonderful news and interesting, so also Shepherd you remember outcasts considered unclean, denied access to temple worship. It would be the shepherds who would be the first announcers that undo us Savior's been born who is Christ the Lord. Don't ever think that God can use any of his children.
Those who received his son to be heralds for that son, and to communicate the message to his or her generation.
So verse 16. The people went out and plundered the camp of the Aramaeans then note this a measure of fine flour was sold for a shekel and two measures of barley for a shekel according to the word of the Lord, by the way, if you want to look down verses 19 and 20 and weekly read them. It's interesting to me is the judgment of God fell on that mocking unbelieving soldier that it's a striking illustration of all who scoff at God's plan and grace. This power because one day all unbelievers all unbelievers will stand before our great God and they will see and they will know at that moment the truth of everlasting paradise. They will see that they will not be able to enjoy. I will apply this story to our own generation are in church. Two ways is the church. First of all is to communicate the message to its generation must first repent of its pathetic failure. The blunt truth is that 82 million Americans do not own one of these 100 million Americans do not attend church of any kind, not even on Easter or Christmas.
The truth is, in the year 1900 there was one Protestant church for every 12,000 people, regardless if they were alive or dead. They just had one Protestant church for every 12,000 people today. There is one Protestant church for every 27,000 people in the average church reaches less than 200 of those 27,000 we do not, well we have discovered paradise and get it is our secret. The church at large does not move like a mighty army. It moves more like a tortoise looking for a soft hall in some sandy beach had waiting till Jesus takes us all of the church moves we are not doing well. If colonial was responsible for meeting it's quotient we would be reaching we would need to reach 27,000 people don't ever get carried away and thinking were doing well. We have yet to begin to reach our city for Christ number two. If the church is to communicate the message to its generation, it must rekindle its primary that's really the problem I want to read you a parable. You probably heard it somewhere, sometime, it's what I like to think of as a parable with a punch rather humorous.
Sadly, sober, true. Now it came to pass that a group existed, who called themselves fishermen and low there were many fish in waters all around streams and lakes were filled with fish and they were all very hungry.
Week after week, month after month, year after year, people who call themselves fishermen met in meetings and talked about their call the fish talked about the abundance of fish talked about how they should really go fishing large buildings for local fishing headquarters and issued please on a regular basis for more fishermen, but they never finished.
They organize the board to send out fishermen to other places where there were many fish large elaborate training centers were built to teach Sherman how to fish persons with doctorates in physiology were hired to do the teaching.
But all they did was teach fishing.
They never finished after one stirring meeting on the necessity of fishing, one young man left the meeting and went fishing.
He caught two fish he was honored for his excellent catch and admired for his rare courage he was scheduled to visit all the large training centers to relate his experiences in fishing. He never had time to fish again. He simply travels around telling his story to people who claim to be fishermen even though they never find time to fish either. Even though Jesus Christ said follow me and I will make you fishers. Maybe you came in this morning and you thought you were in the business of computers. You are not you are in the business of the king placed into the world of computers to reach them with your secret you came in and you thought you were in the world of medicine or pharmaceuticals or sales or repairs. You are not in that you are in the business of the king placed into that world. Share your secret what we need to do is blow off the DOS tuneup. The spring and allow the world to hear the wonderful music. Maybe we have been keeping silent up to this point.
If you want to know the sound of the church is the day it is sound side while the world grows louder and louder and louder communicating the value of carbonated sugar water. We have discovered God help us to break the silence.
I hope today's message challenged you to share the truth of the gospel with those who need to hear it. We have a resource that can help you. It's a fairly brief gospel presentation called God's wisdom for your hearts. It's a resource that you can take someone through or simply give it to someone to read on their own. We have a print version that we offer in bundles. We can give you information about that if you call us today our number is 86 648 Bible or 866-482-4253. You can also find this resource on our website that address is wisdom online.org the other way you can access God's wisdom for your heart is on our smart phone app right on the landing page of our app is a link that says the gospel and that will take you right to this presentation.
It's the wisdom international and it's in the iTunes and the Google place again were so glad you were with us and I hope you be with us for our next Bible lesson tomorrow right here on wisdom