TRUE MINISTRY IS FILLING YOUR NEIGHBORS’ VESSELS
(2 Ki 4:1) Now there cried a certain woman of the wives of the sons of the prophets unto Elisha, saying, Thy servant my husband is dead; and thou knowest that thy servant did fear the LORD: and the creditor is come to take unto him my two sons to be bondmen [in legal exchange for payment of the debt].
1. (Prov 1:7) The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise [Heb: disrespect: contemn] wisdom and instruction.
2. Commentary: The anointed widow of a prophet said to Elisha, “We owe a debt that we cannot pay.”
(2 Ki 4:2-4) And Elisha said unto her, What shall I do for thee? tell me, what hast thou in the house [by extension, in herself, in her body] ? And she said, Thine handmaid hath not any thing in the house [good nor bad], save [Heb: except] a pot of oil [a biblical symbol of the Holy Spirit]. Then he said, Go, borrow thee vessels abroad [Heb: outside] of all thy [willing] neighbours, even empty vessels; borrow not a few. And when thou art come in, thou shalt shut the door upon thee and upon thy sons, and shalt pour out into all those vessels [from your pot of oil “wisdom and instruction” Prov 1:7], and thou shalt set aside [Heb: start on a journey] that [vessel of your neighbor’s] which is full [i.e., finished, complete].
1. oil = Heb: grease, espec. liquid (as from the olive, often perfumed); fig. richness:--anointing, X fat (things), X fruitful, oil ([-ed]), ointment, olive.
2. (2 Cor 8:12) For if there be first a willing mind, it is accepted [by God] according to that a man hath [understanding], and not according to that he hath not [understanding].
3. (Gen 7:15,16) And they went in unto Noah into the ark, two and two of all flesh, wherein is the breath of life. And they that went in, went in male and female of all flesh, as God had commanded him: and the LORD shut him in.
4. (Mat 13:47-50) Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net [the Word of God], that was cast into the sea [of humanity], and gathered of every kind: Which, when it was full [finished, complete], they [the angels] drew to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels [for a journey], but cast the bad away. So shall it be at the end of the world [Gk: aion] [vs. kosmos]: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just, And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth [from those cast away].
a. (Exo 19:18) And mount Sinai [The Law] was altogether on a smoke, because the LORD descended upon it in fire: and the smoke thereof ascended as the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mount quaked greatly.
b. (Isa 31:9) And he [the Assyrian (antichrist)] shall pass over to his strong hold for fear, and his princes shall be afraid of the ensign, saith the LORD, whose fire is in Zion, and his furnace in Jerusalem [which encloses Mount Zion].
(2 Ki 4:5-7) So she went from him, and shut the door [of the house (the ark of their salvation)] upon her and upon her sons, who [ACTION - WORKS: acted as evangelists and] brought the [empty] vessels to her; and she poured out [ACTION - WORKS]. And it came to pass, when the vessels were full [finished, complete], that she said unto her son, Bring me yet a vessel [an empty vessel]. And he said unto her, There is not a vessel [an empty willing vessel] more. And the oil stayed [Heb: abided, tarried]. Then she came and told the man of God. And he said, Go, sell the oil, and pay thy debt [at the judgment seat, showing proof, satisfaction of the debt], and live thou and thy children of the rest [for all eternity].
1. (James 2:20) But wilt thou know, O vain [Gk: empty] man, that faith without works is dead?
2. (James 2:26) For as the body without the spirit is dead [without being born-again, without being imputed for righteousness], so faith without works is dead also.