Grace and Wrath Podcast
Ep. 138: Elisha Crying
Elisha went to the Shunammite woman and said, “Take your family and leave Israel as soon as you can. A famine will hit the land and last for seven years.”
She did as the man of God said. Her family left Israel and moved to the land of the Philistines and stayed there seven years. When she came back to Israel, she went to the king to ask that their family house and land be returned to her.
When she arrived, she found that the king was listening to Gehazi, who was talking about some of the great things Elisha had done. It happened that the servant was telling about the time the prophet brought the dead boy back to life.
Just then, the Shunammite woman walked in. Gehazi said, “My lord. This is the woman I was talking about. It was her son that was raised from the dead.”
The king asked her to tell the story from her viewpoint. After she told the story, he said to a court official, “Make sure this woman gets everything back that belongs to her. Also, give her whatever money was made from her fields while she was away.”
Some time later, Elisha went to the capital of Syria. The Syrian king was sick. When he heard that Elisha was in town, he sent his servant Hazael to the prophet. “Take some gifts to the man of God and ask him if I’ll recover from this illness.”
Hazael took 40 camel-loads of all kinds of goods as a gift. He said to the prophet, “The king of Syria wants to know if he’ll recover from his illness.”
Elisha said, “Go tell him that he’ll recover from his illness. But that’s not true. The Lord has told me that he’ll die.”
Then Elisha stared at Hazael. He stared so long that Hazael became embarrassed. Then the prophet broke down and cried. Hazael said, “Man of God, why are you crying?”
“Oh, because of the horrible things you’ll do to the people of Israel. You’ll burn down their cities and kill their young men. You’ll crush the heads of babies and rip open pregnant women.”
Hazael said, “How can I do these terrible things? I’m only a servant.”
“Oh, the Lord has shown me that you are going to be the king of Syria.”
Hazael left the prophet and went back to his master. The king asked, “What did Elisha say?”
“He said you’d recover from your illness.”
The next day, Hazael dipped a heavy cloth into water, and used it to suffocate the king. After he died, Hazael took his place as king of Syria.