Eyes are important. Vision is critical.
My mother-in-law was recently diagnosed with AMD, age-related macular degeneration. Since it runs in her family, it wasn’t a surprise. Only thing, she noticed changes in what her eyes could see 6 MONTHS before she told someone about it. Then we spent the next 2 months going from doctor to specialist after specialist before we found the one who stands a chance to save her eyes.
A vengeful king
In 2 Kings 6:8-23, we see that Aram (Syria) has been raiding Israel repeatedly. Our prophet Elisha warned the king of Israel to fortify the borders, blocking the enemy’s entry points.
The enrages the enemy king to the point that he suspected treason among his own troops! But they told him that a prophet named Elisha hears from his God who tells him everything – even what the king says in private.
The king’s solution: kill the prophet.
Wow. That’s 3 miracles already:
- Elisha knew precisely where his king should send more troops to protect Israel.
- The enemy army knew who Elisha was, how he got his info, and just how powerful God is.
- The enemy’s king realized the prophet was a real threat.
But those are tiny miracles compared to how God worked in the eyes of those involved in the next events.
A servant’s eyes opened
Overnight, chariots, horses, and soldiers surrounded the city where Elisha was. His servant got up that next morning, went out, and saw the threat. All his eyes could see was the enemy, and he was terrified. He ran back to his master and said, “Oh no, my lord! What shall we do?” (2 Kings 6:13b)
The answer? Elisha’s answer is one I hold tight to, (v14). “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” And them he prayed for the servant’s eyes to see. (v17a)
How awesome! A bold statement of faith and then a prayer. God’s response: The LORD opened the man’s eyes so he could see the hills were full of flaming horses and chariots all around them (v17b). Can you imagine?
A second prayer
As the army moved in, Elisha prayed again: that their eyes be blinded so they could not recognize him. So, not struck completely blind – just confused. God’s response: He did just what Elisha asked for. The prophet was able to tell the enemy that he knew where this pesky prophet was. And they let him lead them THE WRONG WAY! Into Samaria!
Spiritual eyes opened
In verse 22, Elisha tells the king to spare these men. To give them food and water and then release them to go back. The kind did just that, and – no doubt – they told their king what had happened. We know that the enemy king was convinced of the power of God, because the enemy stopped raiding Israel’s territory after that.
So, by showing mercy to this enemy’s army, Elisha shows God’s grace to both the enemy’s king and to his own.
What it means for me:
- God is at work behind the scenes. Just like the servant couldn’t see God’s army in place, protecting him, I am not able to see the spiritual warfare that takes place around me. And I’m okay with that. BUT, I need to be mindful that it IS taking place, and that God’s protective hand is there.
- I can pray for the spiritual eyes of others to be opened. I don’t normally pray this way. Yes, I pray for the lost, but not specifically for their eyes to see the truth about who God is and what His Son did for us on the cross. It’s time for me to get more specific. More info about meeting Jesus and who He is here.
- Showing mercy to my enemies will be noticed by others. My kind treatment of those who mean to harm me will demonstrate God’s love in a powerful way.