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Summary: It wasn’t until Naaman went down in obedience the 7th and last time that the miracle occurred. Some of you are looking for a miracle, but it will not occur until you meet the requirements God is telling your heart!

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WHEN GOD SAYS SEVEN, SIX WON’T DO

2 Kgs. 5:1-17

INTRODUCTION

A. HUMOR: THE SINGING PERFORMANCE

1. A lady had a wealthy father who gave her private singing lessons. At last she sang in a concert. Afterward, she was very excited. A friend came to her dressing room.

2. The singer asked her friend, “You were seated next to my singing instructor. What did he say about my performance?”

3. “He said that you sang heavenly.” “Really? That doesn’t exactly sound like something he’d say.” “Well, I think that’s what he meant.”

4. “Yes, but exactly what did he say? I want to know the exact words.” “Well, if you must know, he said it was an ‘unearthly noise!’”

B. TEXT

1 Now Naaman was commander of the Army of the king of Aram. He was a great man in the sight of his master and highly regarded, because through him the Lord had given victory to Aram. He was a valiant soldier, but he had leprosy. 2 Now bands from Aram had gone out and had taken captive a young girl from Israel, and she served Naaman's wife. 3 She said to her mistress, "If only my master would see the prophet who is in Samaria! He would cure him of his leprosy." 4 Naaman went to his master. 5 "By all means, go," the King of Aram replied. "I will send a letter to the King of Israel." 6 The letter... read: "With this letter I am sending my servant Naaman to you so that you may cure him of his leprosy." 7As soon as the King of Israel read the letter, he tore his robes and said, "Am I God? Can I kill and bring back to life?" 8 Then Elisha the man of God…sent him this message: "Why have you torn your robes? Have the man come to me and he will know that there is a prophet in Israel." 9 So Naaman went... and stopped at the door of Elisha's house. 10 Elisha sent a messenger to say to him, "Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will

be restored and you will be cleansed." 11 But Naaman went away angry and said, "I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy. 12 Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than any of the waters of Israel? Couldn't I wash in them and be cleansed?” So he turned and went off in a rage.13 Naaman's servants... said, "If the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much more then, when he tells you, ‘Wash and be cleansed!" 14 So he went down and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times... and his flesh was restored and became like that a young boy. 15 Then Naaman went back to the man of God...and said, "Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel."

C. THESIS

1. Title: "When God Says Seven, Six Won’t Do.”

2. This story begins in Syria, a powerful enemy of Israel directly to the north. This was a brief period of peace or cease-fire between the 2 nations. The saga begins in Damascus, the great and beautiful capital city of Syria. Here we meet the principle character.

I. NAAMAN’S ALMOST PERFECT SITUATION

A. THINGS GOING FOR NAAMAN

1. Naaman was a five star general, a Patton, a MacArthur, a Schwartzkoph; the commander and chief of all the military forces of Syria.

2. He was second only to King Ben Hadad II. In war, he had a winning record. The Bible even says that God gave him victory! He was distinguished by his courage he was also a man of great wealth.

3. He had a palace in the nicest suburb of Damascus, with a three-chariot garage, stables, servants and all the rest.

B. “BUT HE WAS A LEPER”

1. Leprosy! Even the word stung people with terror.

a. It was incurable, terminal, a slow death. It had no respect for wealth, fame, fortune, or beauty.

b. Physically and psychologically, it was devastating. Its victims became social outcasts who died without family or friends.

2. Naaman had it all -- until leprosy came!

a. It was the cross he had to bear, the drop of gall in his cup, the worm eating at the root of his prosperity.

b. Sometimes a cross is actually a mercy in disguise. This affliction became his salvation! It led to his conversion.

II. THE SLAVE GIRL’S ADVICE

A. HER PRESENCE AT NAAMAN’S HOUSE

1. The solution in our story comes, as God often does, from the least expected places – a little servant girl, a slave against her wishes in the palace of Naaman.

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