Summary: God’s miracle, via Elisha, to multiply the widow’s oil.
1. Email funny (Dail Sleeper)
One year at Thanksgiving, my mom went to my sister’s house for the traditional feast.
Knowing how gullible my sister is, my mom decided to play a trick.
She told my sister that she needed something from the store.
When my sister left, my mom took the turkey out of the oven,
removed the stuffing,
stuffed a Cornish hen,
and inserted it into the turkey,
and re-stuffed the turkey.
She then placed the bird(s) back in the oven.
When it was time for dinner, my sister pulled the turkey out of the oven and proceeded to remove the stuffing.
When her serving spoon hit something, she reached in and pulled out the little bird.
With a look of total shock on her face, my mother exclaimed, "Patricia, you’ve cooked a pregnant bird!"
At the reality of this horrifying news, my sister started to cry.
It took the family two hours to convince her that turkeys lay eggs!
2. To believe in the God of the Bible...
is to believe in the personal involvement of God in the lives of His people . . .
The picture we see of Jesus...
Is a picture of the Messiah who is intimately involved with His followers...
Our Scripture tells of a remarkable story in the life of one of the prophets.
It is a beautiful picture of the personal involvement of God in the lives of His people.
READ THE SCRIPTURE: 2 Kings 4:1-7
3. Josephus, a Jewish historian, tells us that the lady involved in our story was the wife of Obadiah.
It starts on a sad note.
Obadiah died leaving a large debt.
It was such a large debt that it placed in her in poverty.
It is thought that she probably had the responsibility of caring for approximately 100 students at the School of the Prophets . . .
which would be considered the Seminary of that day.
It was something that Obadiah had started.
The debt was so heavy that the creditors were harassing her.
The deadline was approaching.
In the Old Testament culture it was permissible for people to sell themselves or their children into slavery in order to meet their financial obligations...
So, obviously, this was a very serious situation.
Under a heavy burden of debt . . .
fearing that she would lose her two sons . . .
she went to Elisha.
4. The prophet asked her what she wanted . . .
He asked her what she had in her house that might be used to pay off her debt.
She said she had a little bit of oil.
This oil was not a cheap kind of cooking oil.
Adam Clarke says that this oil had been set aside and was being saved for her burial needs.
This oil . . . even though it was just a little bit . . . was very costly.
I am reminded of the story in Matthew 26 . . . of a woman who had an alabaster box of ointment
And that she had poured this on Jesus’ head.
Some of the disciples were astounded at this apparent waste of oil...
but Jesus said, in Matthew 26:13, “When she poured this perfume on my body, she did it to prepare me for burial.”
5. Elisha told her to go and borrow containers from her neighbors . . .
all kinds of jars, bottles, and jugs...
and he added the special instructions of not just asking for a few...
but to try to get as many as they could.
If this were happening today...
I’m sure she would get as many Tupperware and Rubbermaid containers that she could find.
Something must have really struck her about this...
because she did exactly that...
There must have been something in his words or in his looks . . . because she did exactly as he asked.
It would have been interesting to hear what she and her sons told the friends and neighbors why they needed the jars.
When she and her two sons had rounded up all the jugs, jars, and containers they could from their neighbors...
And when they were satisfied that they had enough... they quit asking.
They shut the door and began doing as Elisha asked her to do.
She took her precious and costly jar of oil and began pouring from her jar into the other containers they had borrowed.
As soon as one was filled...
She’d call out...”hand me another jug, please”...
and one of her sons would hand her another jug to be filled.
When that one was filled one of the sons would go place it on the table...
or, if it was a big jar...
perhaps he placed it on the floor...
and then the other son got another jar . . .