Summary: God often brings deliverance to His people through unusual ways and often through unusual people.
THE WINDOWS OF HEAVEN
2 Kings 6:24-25 24 Now it came about after this, that Ben-hadad king of Aram gathered all his army and went up and besieged Samaria. 25 There was a great famine in Samaria
Aram’s army has surrounded Samaria in a siege for a long time. Their supplies are gone and people are starving to death. Extreme famine.
How bad was it?
* A donkey’s head sold for 80 shekels of silver....just the head. Now that is being hungry. Many times more than whole donkey pre-famine.
* Dove’s Dung-1 pint for 5 shekels. Was it actual bird dung or a plant they called dove's dung?
If the plant, that’s just about like a bag of sunflower seeds.
If actual dung, enough for a few minutes fire. (Not likely actual dung, because they’d eat the dove 1st.)
* 2 starving women pledge to boil and eat their babies. After eating one baby, the other mother hides her baby away. The angry one goes to the king complaining, not about eating them eating her own baby, but about how she hid her baby and they now have nothing to eat.
We pick up the story in chapter 7. God is about to open up the windows of heaven and pour out His blessings on them and He is going to do it in a very unusual way thru very surprising people.
2 Kings 7:3-4 3 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? 4 If we say, ‘We will enter the city,’ then the famine is in the city and we will die there; and if we sit here, we die also. Now therefore come, and let us go over to the camp of the Arameans. If they spare us, we will live; and if they kill us, we will but die.”
4 lepers outside the gate. Not allowed in because they have leprosy. If they remain there, they will starve to death. If they leave, the Arameans will likely kill them, but who knows? Maybe they won’t.
* Some positive things to point out about these lepers:
(1) They have problems, but aren’t whiners. They have big problems but are trying to do the best they can for themselves.
(2) They at least try to do something positive. The people in the city are doing nothing to solve their problems and are fighting each other.
A problem we have in America today, there are too many quitters. People who have been dealt a tough blow and just give up. Satisfied lin a dark pit of whining and misery and don’t even try to do better.
** My first word of advice today is “To do everything you can do and trust God to do the rest! To do what you cannot do.”
* “God helps those who help themselves” is not in the Bible. I firmly believe that God helps those that cannot help themselves, but I also believe that God will not help those that will not help themselves!
2 Kings 7:5-7 5 They arose at twilight to go to the camp of the Arameans; when they came to the outskirts of the camp of the Arameans, behold, there was no one there. 6 For the Lord had caused the army of the Arameans to hear a sound of chariots and a sound of horses, even the sound of a great army, so that they said to one another, “Behold, the king of Israel has hired against us the kings of the Hittites and the kings of the Egyptians, to come upon us.” 7 Therefore they arose and fled in the twilight, and left their tents and their horses and their donkeys, even the camp just as it was, and fled for their life.
During the night something awesome has happened!
The God of Angel Armies has sent His armies to circle the enemy and scare the lift out of them.
They woke up in terror and ran away and left behind all the food and treasure that you could imagine!
2 Kings 7:8 When these lepers came to the outskirts of the camp, they entered one tent and ate and drank, and carried from there silver and gold and clothes, and went and hid them; and they returned and entered another tent and carried from there also, and went and hid them.
They have hit the jackpot. They are rich beyond all imagination.
2 Kings 7:9 Then they said to one another, “We are not doing right. This day is a day of good news, but we are keeping silent; if we wait until morning light, punishment will overtake us. Now therefore come, let us go and tell the king’s household.”