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Open my eyes that I may see. 2 Kings 6
2 Kings 6:8-23
Seeing with different eyes

Last week we took a look at 2 Kings 2 which featured Elijah being taken to Heaven without dying.

At the taking of Elijah, Elisha, the chosen successor of Elijah became "the man"-- being the chief prophet in Israel.

Before being taken to Heaven in a whirlwind, accompanied by a chariot and horses that appeared to be on fire, Elijah asked Elisha what he wanted. Elisha immediately replied that he wanted a double portion of the Spirit that was upon Elijah.

Having seen Elijah taken up, God granted Elisha's request. Straight away Elisha showed that the manifestation of the Spirit was upon him, parting the Jordan river with Elijah's cloak, healing the poisoned waters of Jericho, and then calling on God to protect him from a huge pack of threatening youths.

This morning we are going to take a look at 2 Kings 6:8-23 together.

In this passage we see the King of Assyria making sorties into the land of Israel-- however the King of Assyria runs into a problem, for every time he sends a raiding party into the land they are met by the Israelites, being already warned and prepared.

Calling his officials together the King tries to figure out the why and how of this. The answer he gets is that Elisha the prophet knows his every plan (by divine revelation) and that he has been warning the King of Israel. In response to this the King of Assyria decides to try and take Elisha out.

TURN WITH ME TO 2 KINGS 6:8-23 AND LETS FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENED.


LESSONS, PRINCIPLES, OBSERVATIONS OF THE TEXT

1. GOD IS OMNISCIENT- HE KNOWS EVERYTHING

How was it that Elisha knew every plan of attack that the Syrian King came up with? It's because God told him. For the sake of his people and their protection, though they were not faithfully following Him, God revealed these things to Elisha.

As for God knowing all things, David writes in Psalm 139:1-12 "O Lord, you have searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lord, you know it altogether. You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it. Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me. If I say, "Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night," even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.

God knows our hearts, He examines our minds. He knows us through and through.

Rather than considering this to be an invasion of privacy and as a pretext for resisting Him, we must surrender to his knowledge of us and say "Lord, I want my thoughts to be right before you. I want my motives to be found as pure. I want every part of me to be right in your sight. Find me in your Son Jesus that I might stand rightly approved before you--- for it is only in Christ and his righteousness that we can stand before God"

Since God knows everything and the outcome of every circumstance we can live confidently as his followers-- knowing that our days and time is in His good hands.


2. All around is a world we cannot normally see with our eyes- but it's there none the less

When Elisha prays "Lord, open his eyes so he may see", his servant was then for that brief moment in time able to see the into the invisible spiritual world that is all around us.

Evidence that the world is both physical and spiritual is all around us

Positive examples-- being examples of God

-answered prayer
-miracles
-lives changed by Christ
-manifestations of the Spirit (knowledge, discernment, freedom from bondage, etc)

Negative examples- being examples related to Satan and the fallen angels

-peoples fixation with the occult, with ouija boards, with horoscopes, with witchcraft, with yoga, with tai chi, with ying and yang, with Feng Shui, with tarot cards, with idols and the worship of false gods
-demonic possession

Ephesians 6:10-12 speaks quite bluntly about the spiritual world we live in saying;

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.


3. IF GOD BE FOR US, WHO CAN STAND AGAINST US? Romans 8:31

2 things stand out as it regards the Syrian troops surrounding the town Elisha was staying in

a. The response of Elisha's servant
b. The response of Elisha "Those who are with us are more than those who are with them"

Note: Elisha's servant was freaking out while Elisha was as cool as a cucumber.

Why was Elisha so chill? Because of his faith in God. Because he could see all the angels God had sent to protect them and He feared God and not man.

Proverbs 29:25 says; "Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe"

We are not to be afraid of people. We are not to be cowed into silence as it regards our faith in Christ


4. ANGELS ARE GOD'S SERVANTS SENT TO HELP THOSE OF US WHO LOVE HIM

The Bible says a lot about angels.

-Abraham was visited by angels
-Jacob wrestled with an angel
-Gideon was instructed by an angel
-An angel blocked Balaam and his donkey on the path
-Angels carried out various acts of God's judgment (i.e the 10th plague on Egypt, The armies of Assyria 185000 men were destroyed by an angel)
-angels announced Jesus's birth to Mary, then Joseph, then the shepherds
-angels ministered to Christ after he was tempted by Satan in the wilderness
-angels helped Jesus when he was praying in the Garden of Gethsemene
-angels announced Jesus' resurrection and rolled the stone away
-angels appeared and spoke to the disciples after Jesus' ascension
-an angel opened the prison door and led Peter out that they might continue to preach Christ (Acts 5)
-angels surround the throne of God rendering the praise that He is due

Charles Spurgeon "I do not know how to explain it; I can not tell how it is; but I believe angels have a great deal to do with the business of this world"

Some verses

Psalm 34:7 "The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them"

Hebrews 1:14 says; "Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?

God helps us in many ways. God protects us in many ways-- He often uses the angels (whom for the most part we do not see)- though they can and do appear visibly (Hebrews 13:2)

As the children of God and the followers of Christ we are more loved and more cared for than we tend to realize!


5. ELISHA'S PRAYER - THAT GOD OPEN THE EYES OF HIS SERVANT- IS A PRAYER FOR US

We need our eyes opened afresh (for at times our spiritual sight and insight becomes dull). Sometimes we even become spiritually blind to how God is at work.

What do we need our eyes opened to?

a. God's power and the power of Christ available to us
b. God's glory and how worthy He is of our praise and service
c. Answered prayer
d. How much God hates sin (for we are to hate it too)
e. The deceitfulness of sin
f. The power of prayer
g. Understanding Scripture
h. The spiritual conflict that rages about us (a battle for the hearts and minds of us and those around us always ongoing). We need to guard our hearts. Proverbs 4:23 says; "Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it."
i. Opportunities to serve others in the name of Christ
j. Displays and examples of his protection, love and care

Further: Elisha' prayer also reminds us that the prayers of the righteous are powerful and effective (James 5:16)

Note Elisha's prayers "Open his eyes" v.17 "Strike these people with blindness" v.18 "LORD, open the eyes of these men so they can see" v.20


FURTHER BIG THOUGHT--EVERYTHING IS SPIRITUAL!!!!


6. WE ARE TO LOVE OUR ENEMIES

First recorded war being won by food in the Bible! For some time no more attacks because Elisha had the king of Israel feed his enemies instead of kill them.

In Romans 12:17-21 it says; "Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay,"d says the Lord. On the contrary: "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.


Is there someone you are having trouble with? Pray for them. Forgive them. Ask Christ to help you love them.


CONCLUSION

Close by singing "Open the Eyes of my heart"