AXE FACTSBy: Darrelyn L. Tutt
"And the sons of the prophets said unto Elisha, 'Behold now, the place where we dwell with thee is too strait for us. Let us go, we pray thee, unto Jordan and take thence every man a beam, and let us make us a place there, where we may dwell.' And he answered, 'Go ye.' And one said, 'Be content, I pray thee, and go with thy servants.' And he answered, 'I will go.' So he went with them. And when they came to Jordan, they cut down wood. But as one was felling a beam, the axehead fell into the water, and he cried, and said, 'Alas master! For it was borrowed.' And the man of God said, 'Where fell it?' And he showed him the place. And he cut down a stick and cast it in thither; and the iron did swim. Therefore said he, 'Take it up to thee.' And he put out his hand and took it."2 Kings 6:1-7-------This curious little passage is a treasure trove waiting to be unpacked.It speaks to daily life and ordinary matters which attend to the common man.It speaks to a "resourceful" miracle of timely practicality ushered in through God's timely providence. Here we have our seasoned prophet Elisha being approached by a younger generation of prophets reared up beneath his tutelage.Making discoveries of their own, they feel the need for a "stretch of wing" and request a broader scope of landscape. Elisha not only consents to their request but accepts the invitation to labor with them in their new location.While the axehead is not a common industrial tool many of us use today, in Biblical days it was used with frequency. It's interesting to note that a reference to a "slipping axehead" is used elsewhere in the scripture:"As when a man goeth into the wood with his neighbor to hue wood, and his hand fetcheth a stroke with the axe to cut down the tree, and the head slippeth from the helve, and lighteth upon his neighbor that he die ..."Deuteronomy 19:5While this passage rests in the context of a merciful refuge under suspicion of murder, it supports the idea that issues regarding this particular tool were well founded.-------Three lessons we might consider in this curious little miraculous passage:1) Miracles are a practical and empowering manifestation of God.We have a tendency to think that some matters are too little for God's attendance.Who cares about "sinking axeheads" when people around us are faced with life shattering and altering issues like life and death?Who cares about "sinking axeheads" when financial, health, and relational catastrophes are looming on the horizon of those nearest and dearest to us?Who cares?God does.God cares about the daily "sinking axeheads" in our lives. He yearns and burns with desire to display Himself to us in all sorts of ordinary ways in order to grow our understanding of Him and develop intimacy with Him.------2) God is approachable and accessible 24/7.We are given unlimited access to a holy throne where sits a holy God with a holy Christ beside Him making intercession for us continually.God through Christ, has given us permanent access into the "Holiest of Holies" and no mediator is needed to meet with Him.Like the young prophets we are too often guilty of seeking out an "Elisha" for our source of deliverance when, in reality, the young men could have laid hold of the provisions of God just as Elisha did. The individual who asserts his position before God will be met favorably by God and the "axehead will rise" for His glory."Seeing then that we have a great High Priest that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need."Hebrews 4:24,16------3) God delights in making an "axehead" swim.It's to the glory of God that the axehead swims."Floating axeheads" in our daily lives confirm and breathe life into our ordinary days and remind us of the presence and goodness of God.God desires and delights to tend to the smallest of our daily needs.This is why He encourages us in the "Lord's prayer," to utter the words,"Give us this day our daily bread."God is not a distant force desirous of remaining distant and illusive, but a holy God longing for an invitation to reveal and display Himself in our daily lives that we might grow intimate with Him and know Him personally.Blessed is the individual who lifts up the "sinking axehead" to the Lord.He shall witness a miracle in the making.-------Three Study Suggestions:1) What "resourceful" miracles has God performed in your everyday life?What is the name of your "axeheads?"2) Read 2 Kings 5-7 and contribute thoughts on context.3) "Small" miracles speak to a God concerned with daily matters. What miracle would you like to witness today and what do you think it would mean to you?------
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