Thoughts and Reflection
Today we learn that Naaman the Syrian is a brave general in the king’s army. He has honor, reputation, wealth, and power but he is a leper, and will disease will kill him. Naaman’s life is changed when he is told about Elisha’s healing. Elisha tells Naaman to bathe in the Jordan River seven times. At first, he refuses as he sees it as too simple. After he is healed, Naaman decides he will only worship the God of Israel and requests two loads of earth from Israel so he can be standing on holy ground.
About This Project
For the year 2022, I decided that my New Year’s Resolution was to read the whole Bible following the Bible in the Year plan presented by Fr. Mike Schmitz. It is a big and bold undertaking. You can follow along by subscribing. Feel free to look at previous day’s post and comment. It’s something we can all learn from together!
2 Kings 5
2 But the man suffered from a virulent skin-disease. Now, on one of their raids into Israelite territory, the Aramaeans had carried off a little girl, who became a servant of Naaman’s wife.
3 She said to her mistress, ‘If only my master would approach the prophet of Samaria! He would cure him of his skin-disease.’
7 When the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his clothes. ‘Am I a god to give death and life,’ he said, ‘for him to send a man to me and ask me to cure him of his skin-disease? Listen to this and take note of it and see how he intends to pick a quarrel with me.’
11 But Naaman was indignant and went off, saying, ‘Here was I, thinking he would be sure to come out to me, and stand there, and call on the name of Yahweh his God, and wave his hand over the spot and cure the part that was diseased.
13 But his servants approached him and said, ‘Father, if the prophet had asked you to do something difficult, would you not have done it? All the more reason, then, when he says to you, “Bathe, and you will become clean.” ‘
14 So he went down and immersed himself seven times in the Jordan, as Elisha had told him to do. And his flesh became clean once more like the flesh of a little child.
15 Returning to Elisha with his whole escort, he went in and, presenting himself, said, ‘Now I know that there is no God anywhere on earth except in Israel. Now, please, accept a present from your servant.’
17 Then Naaman said, ‘Since your answer is “No,” allow your servant to be given as much earth as two mules may carry, since your servant will no longer make burnt offerings or sacrifice to any god except Yahweh.
18 Only — and may Yahweh forgive your servant for this — when my master goes to the temple of Rimmon to worship there, he leans on my arm, and I bow down in the temple of Rimmon when he does; may Yahweh forgive your servant for doing this!’
19 ‘Go in peace,’ Elisha replied.
20 Naaman had gone a small distance, when Gehazi, Elisha’s servant, said to himself, ‘My master has let this Aramaean Naaman off lightly, by not accepting what he offered. As Yahweh lives, I will run after him and get something out of him.’
22 ‘All is well,’ he said. ‘My master has sent me to say, “This very moment two young men of the prophetic brotherhood have arrived from the highlands of Ephraim. Be kind enough to give them a talent of silver and two festal robes.” ‘
23 ‘Please accept two talents,’ Naaman replied, and pressed him, tying up the two talents of silver in two bags with the two festal robes and consigning them to two of his servants who carried them ahead of Gehazi.
25 He, for his part, went and presented himself to his master. Elisha said, ‘Gehazi, where have you been?’ ‘Your servant has not been anywhere,’ he replied.
26 But Elisha said to him, ‘Was not my heart present there when someone left his chariot to meet you? Now you have taken the money, you can buy gardens with it, and olive groves, sheep and oxen, male and female slaves.
27 But Naaman’s disease of the skin will cling to you and your descendants for ever.’ And Gehazi left his presence white as snow from skin-disease.
2 The beginning of what Yahweh said through Hosea: Yahweh said to Hosea, ‘Go, marry a whore, and get children with a whore; for the country itself has become nothing but a whore by abandoning Yahweh.’
4 Yahweh then said to him, ‘Call him Jezreel, for in a little while I shall punish the House of Jehu for the bloodshed at Jezreel and put an end to the sovereignty of the House of Israel.
7 (Instead, I shall take pity on the House of Judah and shall save them, not by bow or sword or force of arms, not by horses or horsemen, but by Yahweh their God.)’
1 But the Israelites will become as numerous as the sands of the sea, which cannot be measured or counted. In the very place where they were told, ‘You are not my people,’ they will be told they are ‘Children of the living God’.
7 Yes, their mother has played the whore, she who conceived them has disgraced herself by saying, ‘I shall chase after my lovers; they will assure me my keep, my wool, my flax, my oil and my drinks.’
9 then if she chases her lovers she will not catch them, if she looks for them she will not find them, and then she will say, ‘I shall go back to my first husband, I was better off then than I am now;’
14 I shall make her vines and fig trees derelict of which she used to say, ‘These are the pay my lovers gave me.’ I shall turn them into a jungle: wild animals will feed on them.
15 I mean to make her pay for the feast-days on which she burnt incense to the Baals, when she tricked herself out in her earrings and necklaces to chase after her lovers, and forget me! -declares Yahweh.
16 But look, I am going to seduce her and lead her into the desert and speak to her heart.
17 There I shall give her back her vineyards, and make the Vale of Achor a gateway of hope. There she will respond as when she was young, as on the day when she came up from Egypt.
19 I shall banish the names of the Baals from her lips and their name will be mentioned no more.
20 When that day comes I shall make a treaty for them with the wild animals, with the birds of heaven and the creeping things of the earth; I shall break the bow and the sword and warfare, and banish them from the country, and I will let them sleep secure.
22 Yes, I shall betroth you to myself in loyalty and in the knowledge of Yahweh.
23 When that day comes, I shall respond -declares Yahweh- I shall respond to the heavens and they will respond to the earth
25 I shall sow her in the country to be mine, I shall take pity on Lo-Ruhamah, I shall tell Lo-Ammi, ‘You are my people,’ and he will say, ‘You are my God.’
3 I will not set before my eyes anything sordid. I hate those who act crookedly; this has no attraction for me.
7 There is no room in my house for anyone who practises deceit; no liar will stand his ground where I can see him.