Out of Gas

March 2, 2007

Out of Gas!!!

Study Text – 2 Kings 4:1 – 7

Key Verse – 2 Kings 4:6 – "And it came to pass, when the vessels were
full, that she said unto her son, Bring me yet a vessel. And he said unto her,
There is not a vessel more. And the oil stayed."

Out of Gas!! Whenever we hear this statement we usually think of cars;
however it is also a slang term which means that a person has pretty much hit
rock bottom. In this week’s text we meet a woman who finds herself "out of
gas." At this point she turns to a man of God for advice and to the power
of God for deliverance.

We see that this woman has recently been made a widow and creditors are
threatening to take her sons as slaves if she can not pay (1st). She then asks
Elisha what she should do and the prophet responds, "what do you have in
your house of value?" She replies, "a pot of oil" (2nd). Elisha
then tells her to go to her neighbors and borrow MANY empty vessels and then go
into her house, shut the door behind her and her sons, and POUR OUT INTO ALL
THE VESSELS (3rd & 4th). In other words, Elisha was telling her that no
matter how many empty vessels she could collect, God was going to fill them.

After collecting the vessels, she and her sons go into their house, shut the
door behind themselves and begin to pour their oil into the borrowed vessels
(5th). As she continues to pour, she asks one of her sons to bring her another
vessel but he tells her, "There are no more vessels." It is not until
this point that the oil stops flowing. (We will discuss this miracle later.)

So let’s look at the three steps the widow took to get blessed:

(1) She SET UP her household for a blessing.

This was done by collecting the
vessels. She didn’t say, "Well I’ll go and ask my neighbors for
money;" she went and did exactly what God’s prophet told her to do to get

(2 ) She SEPARATED her household.

After she prepared (set herself
up) for the blessing she SHUT HER DOOR! She did this to keep the worldly,
ungodly and YES, nosy out. You see sometimes the nosy (some of these are
possibly your best friends) can hinder your blessings. Imagine if the widow
would have left her door open and that know-it-all neighbor/friend would have
come by and said, "I don’t know why you’ve got all these vessels to pour
that oil in. It’s only going to take 2 or 3 of them to empty that pot." If
this would have occurred who knows what would have happened. Maybe 2 or 3
vessels of oil is all that she would have gotten. Therefore, sometimes you need
to SHUT YOUR DOOR–or as Veronica and I jokingly say "SHUT YA DOE"–
to get your blessings.

(3) She STEPPED Out on Faith.

The last facet of this widow’s
blessing is that she stepped out on faith. She knew without a shadow of a doubt
that ALL her vessels were going to be filled. Even when they all were filled
she was looking for more, but her son had to tell her, "Mom we’re all out
of vessels." This miracle shows us that God is capable of filling whatever
it is that we have whether it is vessels, relationships or pockets. GOD CAN

After getting all the vessels filled the widow went to Elisha and asked him
what to do next. He told her to sell the oil to pay her bills and to live on
the rest (7th). Let’s not just skim over this. God blessed this woman with
enough to PAY OFF her bills and to LIVE ON THE REST. In that one instant, GOD
SET THAT HOUSEHOLD UP FOR LIFE!!!!!!! In that one moment, the widow went from
being poor to being RETIRED, all because she had faith in God. Yet, this should
not surprise us because God is an Abundant God! Ephesians 3:20 tells us that
God is "able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think,
according to the power that worketh in us." This woman’s needs were met
far beyond her expectations. Remember, she just wanted to get the creditors off
her back. But look at what God did.

Therefore, let’s learn from the widow and follow her steps:

  • SET UP your future plans with
    God and not only a financial planner. A 401K is good, but nothing compared to Godly
  • SEPARATE your household for
    God in Holiness rather than for status among men. Don’t get caught up in
    the Jefferson’s syndrome of movin’ up to the eastside without moving closer
    to God.
  • STEP OUT on the faith that
    God will provide abundantly for you. "For we walk by faith, not by
    sight" (2Corinthians 5:7). Trust me, God’s retirement plan is the
    only one that will get you ALL THE WAY down the highway to heaven without
    running OUT OF GAS—or in the widow’s case, OIL!!