1. Hello, listening friends.
2. It is a special joy and delight for us to know that you are listening to this program
3. And that is why we love it when you write to us and let us know how you feel and how God is blessing you through these programs
4. We are in the midst of a series of messages from II Kings
5. And specifically we have been looking at chapter 5, verses 1 to 15
6. In our last broadcast, I promised to tell you how one of the greatest Syrian generals experienced the blessings of surrender.
7. Last time, we read the passage in II Kings 5: 1-15.
8. Now, imagine Naaman . . . a great general . . .
9. the war hero . . . and a champion of the ancient Syrian army.
10. However, he was struck with the dreaded leprosy which turned his life into misery.
11. He probably would have gladly . . . given all his wealth, . . .
12. he probably would gladly give up all of his medals and all of his possessions
13. Just for one day free from pain and agony.
14. Who was there to witness to the general?
15. It was not the important men of his time.
16. Nor were the other officers
17. But it was a little Hebrew girl who was taken captive.
18. It was a little slave girl who witnessed to the general.
19. In v. 3 of II Kings 5, . . .
20. Listen to what the little girl said to Naaman’s wife, . . .
21. "If only my master would see the prophet who is in Samaria! He would cure him of his leprosy."
22. My listening friends, please listen carefully.
23. Don't be intimidated about your witnessing.
24. Do not worry if the person is older or greater than you.
26. If you speak to them with respect, . . .
27. they want to know how to be free from sin and guilt
28. They want to be free from spiritual leprosy.
29. Don't be intimidated by them or by their high positions.
30. They are crying on the inside.
31. They are hiding behind their philosophical mask.
32. And yet they are desperately lost and long to know the way.
33. They are desperately sick and long to find a cure.
34. This little girl had confidence, . . .
35. not in Elisha, but in the God of Elisha.
36. This little girl had assurance in "Yahweh Raffia," . . .
37. the God that heals.
38. And she had to testify to her God.
39. The general may have been intimidating in his uniforms . . .
40. but she probably watched the agony on his face.
41. The general may have looked impressive with all the guards around him, . . .
42. but she knew that when he was alone he could not lie down because the physical pain was too great.
43. So, she witnessed to him.
44. She could have said, “Why should I bother?”
45. “I should take care of myself.”
46. She could have said, “I have problems of my own.”
47. “I am a captive in a foreign land.”
48. “I have been snatched from my family.”
49. She could have said,
50. “Why should I help him?”
51. “After all it was his army that pulled me away from my parents and sold me into slavery.”
52. “He deserves every bit of agony that he has got.”
53. Oh, but she didn't do that
54. Her thoughts were not focused on herself.
55. Her life was not focused upon her circumstances.
56. My friends, believe me.
57. The moment you begin to focus on yourself, . . .
58. you will be the most miserable person alive.
59. So, the young girl witnessed to her God in the midst of her slavery.
60. She witnessed in the midst of her own pain.
61. Finally, Naaman goes to Samaria with the appropriate letters and recommendations from the king.
62. But he also brings something else with him.
63. He comes loaded with silver and gold and expensive gifts of all kinds.
64. He thought he could buy his healing.
65. And instead of going to the man of God, . . .
66. he ended up at the door of the King of Israel.
67. The King of Israel rips his clothes off and thinks that this is a trick designed by the Syrian king to pick a fight with him.
68. In v. 8 of II Kings 5:
69. Elisha hears of what has happened and he sends a word to the King of Israel and saying
70. How they went to the wrong address . . .
71. they know what a thorough secular humanist king you are of this religious nation, they would never have gone to you
72. send them to me . . .
73. I will show you and them that there is a prophet in Israel."
74. So, in v 9,
75. the entire impressive procession of generals and chariots and servants land on the doorstep of Elisha’s house.
76. You would think that Elisha would have been at the door welcoming them.
77. You would think that he would have invited the most important members of the group into his home.
78. You would think that he would have brought together all the local ministers . . . all dressed up in their best . . . to meet this great hero.
79. But he did not.
80. God's man is not impressed with what impresses the world.
81. Naaman on the other hand, expected . . . at least a warm welcome.
82. However, . . . Naaman's expectations get shattered.
83. Elisha sent a message to the great general:
84. "Go wash yourself seven times in the Jordan and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed.”
85. Please try to imagine Naaman’s reaction.
86. “Go to the River Jordan?”
87. “What kind of fool does he think that I am?”
88. Who does he think that he is?”
89. “Does he know who I am?”
90. In Verses 11 and 12 . . . you actually can feel the fire coming out of Naaman's nostrils.
91. He was sizzling and was hopping mad.
93. His expectations were not met.
94. His expectations were not fulfilled.
95. Listen to what he said:
96. “I thought he would come out and lay hands on the spots and call upon the name of his God and I would be healed.”
97. “Furthermore, we have two of the best rivers in the world flowing through Damascus.”
98. “They are clean rivers, . . . they are flowing rivers.”
99. “Why does Elisha send me to that dirty, filthy Jordan River”
1. In a fit of rage, he commands his procession to head back to Syria.
2. Some people treat God like a bell hop.
3. They think that God is there to do whatever they ask Him to do.
4. They get shattered and devastated and angry with God.
6. Because they don't get what they want . . . when they want it . . . and how they want it.
7. You and I know angry and bitter people all around us.
8. They are angry because they expected God to do something for them and God did not do it the way they asked for it.
9. Most likely it was because God knew that what they were asking for was not for their ultimate best.
10. God can see around the corner and we can’t.
11. In Verse 13,
12. Naaman's servants intervene and ask him to give it a try.
13. They used logic, and said to the General:
14. “If he asked you to do some great things would you not have done it?”
15. When he acceded and he dipped into the Jordan River 7 times . . . he was healed.
16. My listening friends, pay close attention to this point.
17. Naaman's healing was not in the water of Jordan.
18. Naaman's healing was not even in the words of Elisha.
19. Naaman's healing was in the trip to the Jordan River.
20. There is a blessing in surrender.
21. There is a miracle in obedience.
22. There is provision in submission.
23. There is healing in yielding.
24. I can imagine old Naaman . . . angrily . . . pounding the ground.
25. Then when they got to the river, he probably did not want to take his clothes off in front of his subordinates.
26. He was embarrassed about his grotesque skin.
27. I can also imagine, when he finally dipped in the river the first time and then a second time, . . .
28. and there was no noticeable improvement in his condition, . . .
29. he was probably tempted to give up.
30. He was thinking “this is all just a bit too crazy for me.”
31. So, he dipped a third, fourth, fifth and the sixth time and still he saw no change.
32. He probably thought to himself:
33. “This is a hoax”
34. “I do not know what I am doing here.”
35. I must get out”
36. You know, most people would have abandoned this foolish venture probably right after the sixth time.
37. But Naaman knows that the prophet of God said seven times.
38. Then when he dipped in the seventh time, his skin became as clean and as smooth as a baby's skin.
39. Wow! Can you imagine the excitement?
40. The God of Israel is for real.
41. The God of Israel is the God of power.
42. The God of Israel is the God of majesty.
43. The God of Israel is the God of miracles.
44. The God of Israel is a great God . . . and a mighty God.
45. My friend let me ask you this
46. Do you know what is stopping the miracle in your life?
47. It is whatever it is that God's finger is pointing out to you and saying: “This one, give it to me.”
48. God is saying to you: “Surrender it to me, repent of it.”
49. Will you surrender it to God today?
50. And begin to experience the miracle of God
51. It is my prayer that you would say yes
52. Until next time, I wish you God’s richest blessing