In my last post, we continued to explore the ministry of Elisha by looking at 2 Kings 4:8-10 where we introduced to another Great Women. In this post, we continue to learn more about this Great Woman in 2 Kings 4:11-17.
The Great Woman Bears A Son
“11 One day Elisha came to visit there, and he went into the upper room to lie down. 12 He said to Geichazi, his servant, ‘Call this Shunamit.’ He called her; and when she arrived, 13 he said to him, ‘Tell her this: ‘You have shown us so much hospitality! What can I do to show my appreciation? Do you want me to say anything to the king for you? or to the commander of the army?’ She answered, ‘I’m happy living as I do, among my own people.’ 14 He said, ‘What, then, is to be done for her?’ Geichazi answered, ‘There’s one thing — she doesn’t have a son, and her husband is old. 15 Elisha said, ‘Call her.’ After he called her, she stood in the doorway. 16 He said, ‘Next year when the season comes around, you will be holding a son.’ ‘No, my lord,’ she answered. ‘Man of God, don’t lie to your servant!’ 17 But the woman conceived and gave birth to a son the following year when the season came around, just as Elisha had said to her.” ~ 2 Kings 4:11-17 (CJB)
The second part of the story introduces Geichazi, the assistant to Elisha, as an intermediary between Elisha and the unnamed woman. The prophet and his servant were resting in the room when Elisha expressed a desire to do something special for the woman because of her kindness to them, and he asked Geichazi to call her so that he could discuss the matter with her. Elisha poses the same question for to her as he did for the widow who came to plead her case: What can I do to show my appreciation? (2 Kings 4:2).
Elisha addressed his words to Geichazi possibly because the woman held Elisha in such high regard that she did not feel worthy to speak with him. However, her reply was humble and brief: I’m happy living as I do, among my own people. She did not want Elisha to intercede with the great God because she had no desire to be treated like a great person. She was hospitable because she wanted to serve the Lord.
Discussion with Geichazi reveals her real need: Unlike the widow, she cannot lose her children, because she has none. Her husband was older than she, so perhaps conception was impossible; but if God could do it for Avraham and Sarah, He could do it for them. It was likely that her husband would precede her in death, and without a family, she would be left alone and without support. Geichazi called her a second time, and this time Elisha spoke to her personally. He gave her a promise that sounded very much like God’s words to Avraham and Sarah (Genesis 17:21; 18:14).
How many blessings husbands with nominal faith have received because of the dedication of their godly wives! The promise was fulfilled, and the woman gave birth to a son. Grace brought life where once there had been no life.
In my next post, we continue to explore the life of Elisha. In this post, we learn about this Great Woman’s Sorrow in 2 Kings 4:18-28.