God of Deliverance

This is part 2 of the series When Pigs Fly. If you didn’t read that one. I encourage you to visit that one first here – God Over Creation

Continuing through the life of Elisha the Prophet we will see today that the miraculous work of God will give us deliverance from the forces of the enemy and over sin.

2 Kings chapter 5 is the account of Naaman being healed of leprosy. Naaman was the commander of the army in Aram. He was not an Israelite, but he heard from a slave girl that there was a man in Israel who could cure the leprosy that he had been inflicted with for years. Naaman as an important man; had expectations when he went to meet this man, who was Elisha the Prophet. Elisha did not meet these expectations, but after some hesitation and frustrations from Naaman. Through the obedience of Naaman; following the words of Elisha the voice of God. He found his healing from leprosy. Naaman attempted to pay Elisha for the healing. Elisha refused the gifts saying…

“As surely as the LORD lives, whom I serve, I will not accept a thing.”

2 Kings 5:16

Elisha understood the healing that Naaman had was not because of the effort of himself, but it was because of the obedience of Naaman to the LORD. The power was not from Elisha, but from God.

But we will continue about healing next time (Part three: The God Who Heals).

Up to this point of the account of Elisha’s ministry to Naaman is all about healing. The miracle of healing is present and its clear some of the aspects of how to receive healing, but it is after Naaman leaves where I want share that God has miraculous power over sin and evil.

He is the God of Deliverance!

Let’s read the rest of chapter 5 to see an example from what and why we need deliverance.

19 “Go in peace,” Elisha said.

After Naaman had traveled some distance, 20 Gehazi, the servant of Elisha the man of God, said to himself, “My master was too easy on Naaman, this Aramean, by not accepting from him what he brought. As surely as the Lord lives, I will run after him and get something from him.”

21 So Gehazi hurried after Naaman. When Naaman saw him running toward him, he got down from the chariot to meet him. “Is everything all right?” he asked.

22 “Everything is all right,” Gehazi answered. My master sent me to say, ‘Two young men from the company of the prophets have just come to me from the hill country of Ephraim. Please give them a talent of silver and two sets of clothing.’

23 “By all means, take two talents,” said Naaman. He urged Gehazi to accept them, and then tied up the two talents of silver in two bags, with two sets of clothing. He gave them to two of his servants, and they carried them ahead of Gehazi. 24 When Gehazi came to the hill, he took the things from the servants and put them away in the house. He sent the men away and they left.

25 When he went in and stood before his master, Elisha asked him, “Where have you been, Gehazi?”

Your servant didn’t go anywhere,” Gehazi answered.

26 But Elisha said to him, “Was not my spirit with you when the man got down from his chariot to meet you? Is this the time to take money or to accept clothes—or olive groves and vineyards, or flocks and herds, or male and female slaves? 27 Naaman’s leprosy will cling to you and to your descendants forever.” Then Gehazi went from Elisha’s presence and his skin was leprous—it had become as white as snow.

2 Kings 5:19-27

Here we find Gehazi falling into temptation. He had been the servant of Elisha for a long time. He had see the man of God do many miracles and seen God move in the nation of Israel and on people’s lives, but he still fell into the trap of temptation.

It is important that we begin here when looking at the power of God for deliverance. It doesn’t matter who you are all of us are imperfect people saved by grace. Paul wrote;

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

Romans 3:23

It is only through Jesus Christ that we have righteousness to be able to live for and stand before God. Gehazi just like us had seen great things, but fell to a temptation.
We need to daily be renewed in our minds and hearts through the power of the Holy Spirit. If we are not daily looking and putting our full commitment and dependence on Christ we, too, will fall to temptation.

First thing we must understand is that sin is real and there is a battle everyday.

6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that He may lift you up in due time. 7 Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you. 8 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.

1 Peter 5:6-9

In our lives, we can get caught off guard; like Gehazi. It started with a thought that started bothering him. He became angry with how a situation was handled. In this time, there are many situations that are being handled in ways that can cause angry or great frustration.

Once we allow that irritation to fester and take root in our hearts and minds then we have caused a foothold for the enemy to influence our minds. Gehazi allowed the anger to motivate him to lie and cheat. That anger turned into greed, envy and lying as he cheated Naaman out of money and clothes.

There is a battle going on and the enemy is looking for people who are not “standing firm in the faith” to devour. As the account of Gehazi’s sin ends; Elisha was not fooled. Just as God is not fooled. The truth will always come out and if there is something hidden in your life allow the Holy Spirit to free you by “humbling yourself, under God’s mighty hand.” Gehazi’s sin is judged and he is found guilty. We will all stand before God and our sin will be judged; do not allow the frustrations of life to cause you to sin.

In the end of this story we find that God is a righteous judge and will convict the world of sin…but remember we are talking about The God of Deliverance!

18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Matthew 28:18-20

There is a war, but we have freedom if we humble ourselves and obey God. Jesus said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.” We can have that same power and authority over heaven and earth at work in our lives if we are willing to choose to set aside our selfish desires, humble ourselves, cast our cares on Him, and resist through faith in Jesus’ gift of grace!

We have deliverance through Christ. We must daily commit to the faith that He is who He said He is.

There is miraculous power in the deliverance we can have through Christ in our lives. It is important that we follow what Paul wrote in Colossians 3

Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.  

Colossians 3:5-10

We must commit to putting on the new self everyday. Then we will continually be renewed in our love, faith, and hope in Christ Jesus our LORD.

Often we can’t see the miracle of deliverance, but we will experience a miracle every day we choose to stand firm in the faith and put on the new self in Christ Jesus. James helps us understand what happens when we choose to take steps to experience these miracles everyday.

7 Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Come near to God and he will come near to you. 

James 4:7-8a

Daily as we draw close to God; He will draw close to us and we will experience the miracle of deliverance daily.

Do you believe in miracles you can’t see?

Do not follow Gehazi, but choose to stand victorious over the enemy through the power of Jesus Christ who is the God of deliverance!

 

 

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