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Synopsis of the Books of the Bible, by John Nelson Darby, [1857-62], at

4 Kings (2 Kings) Chapter 8

The history of the woman [See Note #1], whose son Elisha had raised to life again, gives us a little picture of all God's dealings with Israel. During long years, as determined by Jehovah, Israel is deprived of everything; but God has preserved all for them, and in the day of blessing all will be restored to them; and they shall receive double the fruit of their years of affliction. It is the son restored to life that brings blessing. Nevertheless the judgments of God are being accomplished. Elisha goes to Damascus, and Hazael, the rod of Jehovah to chastise His people, is placed on the throne of Syria. On the other hand, Elisha is acknowledged by the Gentiles themselves. The Spirit of God takes notice of the consequences of Judah's alliance with Israel; but with this exception, Judah for the time is out of sight.

Note #1

It seems to me that Gehazi stands here in a grievous position. Smitten by the hand of God, because his heart clung to earth, even in the presence of Jehovah's mighty and long-suffering testimony, he is now a parasite in the king's court, relating the wonderful things in which he no longer took part. This poor world grows weary enough of itself to lead it to take some pleasure in hearing anything spoken of that has reality and power. Provided that it does not reach the conscience, they will listen to it for their amusement, taking credit to themselves perhaps for an enlarged and a liberal mind, which is not enslaved by that which they can yet recognise philosophically in its place. But that is a sad position, which makes it evident that formerly we were connected with a testimony, whilst now we only relate its marvels at court. Nevertheless God makes use of it; and it does not follow that there was no truth in Gehazi. But to rise in the world, and entertain the world with the mighty works of God, is to fall very deeply.

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