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Miracles of care for the remnant (4:1-44)
The widow of one of the prophets was in desperate trouble. She had hardly any food left and was about to lose her only means of income; for her sons were to be taken from her in payment for a debt. Elisha’s miraculous provision of oil enabled her to pay the debt and so preserve a few of God’s faithful in days of extreme hardship (4:1-7).
Another of Israel’s faithful was the wife of a wealthy landowner. She recognized Elisha as God’s representative and offered him hospitality as often as he needed it. As with the poor widow of the previous story, Elisha provided for the woman’s future, in this case by promising her a son (8-17). Some years later the son died. The woman, still strong in faith, reasoned that seeing the prophet had promised her the son in the first place (even though she had not asked for a son), he had the responsibility to correct what had gone wrong. He was God’s representative and she would speak with no other (18-31). She insisted that Elisha himself go to her house, and again she would accept no other. Her faith was rewarded when Elisha brought her son back to life (32-37).
Elisha moved around the schools of the young prophets to instruct and encourage the faithful. At one school, during a time of famine, food was so scarce that the men had to eat wild plants. In these circumstances they suffered a serious loss when one of their meals was ruined because somebody had mistakenly cooked a poisonous plant. God lovingly provided for them through Elisha (38-41).
On another occasion God’s care for the faithful was shown when a farmer brought an offering of food that was miraculously multiplied to feed Elisha and a hundred of his followers (42-44).
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Flemming, Donald C. "Commentary on 2 Kings 4". "Fleming's Bridgeway Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Second Week after Epiphany