Our prayers can take many forms. Sometimes our prayers can be worshipful and thankful. At other times our prayers should be repentant as we confess our failures and faults. Sometimes we ask the Father to supply our needs... everything from daily bread to His assistance as we face temptations. And our prayers can also be intercessory in nature as we take the needs of others to the Master.
Elisha interceded on behalf of his servant. Here’s the story...
Elisha, the prophet of Almighty God, had ticked off Ben-Hadad, the king of Syria (also called Aram). Syria was waging war against Israel, and when Syria prepared for a strategic military maneuver, God spoke to Elisha revealing Syria’s secret plans. Elisha then shared the report with Israel’s military leaders. Consequently, Syria’s plans were thwarted. When Syria’s king discovered Elisha’s activities, he determined to put an end to the prophet’s life.
Ben-Hadad sent a platoon of horses and chariots to surround the little village of Dothan, the place where Elisha was staying. On that fateful morning, Elisha’s servant got up early, no doubt to get the newspaper and make the coffee. The servant looked out the window, and to his astonishment and horror, he saw the fierce Syrian army. There were hundreds of battle-hardened military men, licking their chops, ready to pounce upon the elusive Elisha.
With utter panic in his voice the servant cried, “Oh, my master, what are we to do?” (2 Kings 6:15, CSB).
The Bible doesn’t say that Elisha was alarmed or anxious. God had apparently revealed His plan of protection. Elisha spoke calmly and confidently, “Don’t be afraid, for those who are with us outnumber those who are with them” (2 Kings 6:16, CSB).
Maybe the servant had a retort. The Bible is silent on this matter. I suspect he might have said something like, “Are you crazy? It’s two against two thousand! We’re dead meat!”
Again, Elisha spoke calmly and confidently, but this time he wasn’t talking to the servant. He was talking to God. “Lord, please open his eyes and let him see” (2 Kings 6:17, CSB). Elisha interceded on behalf of his friend, and God answered his request. “So the Lordopened the servant’s eyes, and he saw that the mountain was covered with horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha” (2 Kings 6:17, CSB). The Syrian army was still there, but on the hills just beyond them was another army. An undefeatable heavenly army!
I have a long prayer list. Timmy has a boo-boo. Sally has a scratch and Herb has a bruise. Is your prayer list too much like that? I suggest that we begin to pray, “Lord, God Almighty, please open our eyes to see the worders of your activities around us!”
We should learn to pray like Paul... “I pray that he may grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with power in your inner being through his Spirit, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. I pray that you, being rooted and firmly established in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the length and width, height and depth of God’s love, and to know Christ’s love that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God” (Ephesians 3:16–19, CSB).
South Georgia Baptist Church
Mike Martin, Pastor