Summary: HELP... WE'RE SURROUNDED.
2 Kings 6: 8 - 23 HELP... WE'RE SURROUNDED.
In June 1920, the people of Shansi, China were warned that bandits were coming. One lady missionary within the village was responsible for a mission school for about forty girls. She said, "The Lord in His mercy spared us and our school of girls". "No wonder", the villagers replied, "you see on the corners of your compound walls, standing on guard, we saw four angels with drawn swords in their hands."
Ps 34:7 The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them
Dothan was a small village, unwalled and unguarded about twenty miles from Samaria.
And in the night, the Syrian bands came with horses and chariots, and surrounded the city on every side. Elisha's servant saw the army about their village and thought the end had come.
He rushed into his masters presence and cried, "Alas my master, how shall we do" (6:15) Moffat, "Whatever shall we do" In effect he was saying, "Help... we're surrounded".
1. THE FORCE DISCERNED 8 Then the king of Syria warred against Israel, and took counsel with his servants, saying, In such and such a place shall be my camp.
When the Christian has power and peace restored, "Then the King of Syria warred ". (6:8)
The Syrian King Ben-hadad had proved to be a constant irritant to Israel.
Frequent border raids were mounted on Jordan's territory in Northern Israel.
(a) THE HOSTILITY OF THE ENEMY: 8 Then the king of Syria warred against Israel.
Was it not to this very king that Israel had rendered a remarkable favour in the salvation and healing of Naaman
There must be a continual realisation that we are at war and the enemy is hostile and wicked!
Paul exhorts Timothy to "endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ". (2 Tim 2:3)
He encourages the Ephesian believers to put on the whole armour of God! (Eph 6:11)
(b) THE STRATEGY OF THE ENEMY: 8 and took counsel with his servants, saying, In such and such a place shall be my camp.
Ben-hadad avoided open attack. His plan was to set ambushes in unexpected places, and so cut off his enemy by stratagems and wiles! (6:8)
But Elisha, knew his plans, so the armies of the Syrian King were continually thwarted!
Paul says: "we are not ignorant of his devices". (2 Cor 2:11)
Victor Hugo said: "A good General must penetrate the brain of his enemy."
Chinese proverb "If you know yourself and your adversary clearly, then in a hundred battles you will win a hundred times."
The Devil works Through evil speaking: (James 4:11) through doubt: (Gen 3:1) through false teaching: (2 Tim 4:3) through an unequal yoke: (2 Cor 6:14) through impurity: (1 Cor 6:13) through discouragement (Num 21:4)
(c) THE TENDENCY OF THE ENEMY: 13 And he said, Go and spy where he is, that I may send and fetch him. And it was told him, saying, Behold, he is in Dothan.
Satan's aim and objective is to attack the " key men" Men who are getting in Satan's way: men who are winning souls: men who are Spirit-filled, leaders who have influence!
2. THE FEAR DISPELLED 15 And when the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, Alas, my master! how shall we do?
16 And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them.
When we face a crisis, we have two choices.
We can react like Elisha did in perfect calm, or we can choose the response of his servant and panic. The word " alas", indicates a heart seized with terror and panic.
So often the greatness of our fears shows us the weakness of our faith!
(a) THE CAUSE OF HIS FEAR:
Facing the ranks of the enemy this young man was at a complete loss as to the way out! - Alas, my master! how shall we do? - Our trials often come to us in" battalions."
(b) THE CURE FOR HIS FEAR:
Elisha was totally undisturbed about the enemy calmly replied, "Fear not: for they... them". This cure involved two things: Elisha's servant had:
(1) GOD'S WORD TO HIM: 16 And he answered, Fear not:
There are no fewer than 366 direct instructions in the Bible not to fear... one for every day of the year including a leap year!
Deut 33:27 The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, Destroy them.
Rom 8:31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?