Summary: God is concerned about our Condition. The Prophet said, I don’t know what I can do for you – but I know a Man that is Able to make a way out of no way – I know a Man that can take nothing and make something. So the prophet asks this widow, what do you h
Dr. Wayne A. Lawson
Antioch Institutional Baptist Church
Oklahoma City, OK
Preached July 5, 2009 11:00 a.m.
TITLE: SHUT THE DOOR
This is a very exciting text buried in the pages of the Old Testament. The prophet Elisha has begun to spread his wings and move out from under the shadows of his mentor Elijah who had gone on to be with the Lord. There are really two (2) powerful lessons in this text. I will touch upon one while expounding upon the other, although both lessons in these short seven versus are worthy of much more time than I am able to devote this morning. There is an advantage in looking in the Old Testament to consider the essence of the New Testament message. The Old Testament generally presents the truth in the form of a picture. When we look at the Old Testament in the light of the New Testament , we actually discover the truth in a very clear picture. I desire your attention to be placed upon an interesting thought that we can extract from this Old Testament text –Shut The Door.
In our text we will see the value and the importance of a Closed Door. We find tucked away in our text, a woman in moments of bereavement, she had recently lost her husband. Not only did she lose her husband, but she also lost a “God-Fearing” man who understood the importance of placing God in the center of your household. Some would suggest that this man who left behind a family was also a Prophet, he had a Wife and at least Two (2) Sons, mentioned in the text.
So this faithful servant of God had transitioned from Labor to Reward, leaving behind a wife and two sons. As we continue to read the text, we find when he died, he left his loved ones in a bad financial situation. The widow finds the prophet and cries that the “creditor” has come. They did not have Caller ID back then, when the creditor calls today we act like we are not home and don’t answer the telephone. We must be careful – we tell our children/grandchildren to answer the phone and tell the creditor that you are not home -- “Mommy said to tell you that she is not home right now.”
• This woman had a real concern
• Feared the Creditors would Take her two sons
• Children especially sons would be taken from the home to pay off a debt
• Serve as servants
• Sometimes they would be imprisoned for a period of time, until debt was satisfied
Remember with me Jesus told about the King found in ST. MATTHEW 18 -- Called his servants in to check their accounts and one was found that owed him 10,000 talents. Was about to sell his servant, his wife, and their children for payment in an effort to satisfy the debt. Servant asked for patience and he would repay the King. King had compassion and forgave him the debt. The servant left Kings presence and went out and found a neighbor that owed him money – asked for patience – Refused – had him thrown into Prison. When news of this found its way to the King he had his servant beaten and given over to the tormentors because he refused to show the same compassion that was extended to him. Point being – that you were cast into prison for a period of time that would suffice the debt that was owed. So this Mother standing before Elisha had a valid and a very real concern for welfare of her sons.
First thing we see in this text, that we will briefly examine is we should be concerned about preparing a “Nest Egg” must be in the habit young people and young families -- when you are paid on the job -- always pay yourself. Discipline ourselves to save a portion of what you are earning. It is a sad thing to work a lifetime and when the final chapter in this Novel Called Life has been Written – have not put enough away to put us away. The scriptures tell us in PROVERBS 13:22 “A GOOD MAN LEAVETH AN INHERITANCE FOR HIS CHILDREN’S CHILDREN.” God expects us to be good stewards over what he has entrusted to our charge. This was not a new thought, but the foundation of being good stewards can be traced to the history of the Hebrew Wisdom Literature.
So here we find a Widow and family, left in a bad way. Find the widow before Elisha with a heart felt plea. Elijah is somewhat caught off guard by her plea for help, and he responds to her saying -- “What shall I do for thee?” Hear with me what the woman’s request was: