Introduction to God’s Provision:
Are you in need of God’s provision today? Is there a situation in your life in which you need to experience His answer to your prayer?
In 1 Kings 4:42-44, we see how God’s powerful provision came through at a critical time for Elisha and a large group of prophets that were being mentored by him at that time.
If we look at 2 Kings 4:38, we find that the region of Gilgal was going through a famine at that time. This meant that food was scarce for Elisha and his students. As a result, verses 39-41 of this chapter show us that the group had just come through a scary moment of food poisoning, due to the preparation of some wild gourds for one of their meals. Thankfully, they were delivered from this attack of food poisoning due to a mighty healing God provided through Elisha ( 2 Kings 4:41).
At this time of a food shortage, we find in verse 42 how God provided for His servants. The provision came through an unknown and unnamed man who brought an offering to Elisha. 2 Kings 4:42 simply says, “A man came from Baal Shalisha…” The offering this unnamed man brought consisted of 20 loaves of baked barley bread and some heads of new grain.
God’s provision often comes through unknown people and in unexpected ways!
Similarities to Jesus feeding the 5000:
Although the quantity of food that was brought by the unknown man was insufficient for the entire group of prophets, Elisha, by faith, trusted God to multiply the food. He therefore asked a servant to distribute the food (2 Kings 4:42), just like Jesus told his disciples when feeding the 5000.
The servant’s response however was very similar to that of Jesus’ faithless disciples. He asked, “How can I set this before a hundred men?” (2 Kings 4:43). Elisha’s answer to that question was also very similar to how Jesus responded to His disciples. He said , “Give it to the people to eat. For this is what the Lord says: ‘They will eat and have some left over’ ” (2 Kings 4:43).
As the servant began to distribute the food, a miracle of multiplication began to take place. The Bible says in 2 Kings 4:44, “Then he set it before them, and they ate and had some left over, according to the word of the Lord”. This was indeed what happened when Jesus fed the 5000 as well!
As a result of his faith, Eli was able to adequately feed all those present, numbering around 100.
In a similar way, God is not only able to provide for His trusting children; He is also able to multiply His provision, when needed. Trust Him therefore during your time of need and experience the miracle of God’s provision unfolding. He will come through for you!
Psalm 34:6 says, “This poor man called, and the Lord heard him; He saved him out of all his troubles.”
Illustration of God’s Provision:
When our second son was to be born, everything pointed to a normal and safe delivery. However, at the last moment, the Doctor recommended a caesarean surgery due to a medical emergency that had arisen. As a result, the hospital bill went way in excess of what we had planned for and what our insurance could cover. We therefore had resources to cover only about 40% of the total bill. We realized we needed God’s provision to settle this unexpected difficulty
As I was in a quandary about how I could bridge the deficit, my thoughts drifted to a rewards scheme that our bank was providing, for accounts that had maintained a certain minimum balance over the preceding 6 months. When I checked my account, I realized that I may be eligible to apply for a reward as I had maintained a small balance for 6 consecutive months.
I therefore hurriedly went to our bank and explained the situation to one of the Managers, not really expecting much of a favorable response. This gentleman did a quick check on my account and to my surprise said, ” Mr Jayasooriya, we can give you Rs X for the surgery and a further Rs X as a gift for the birth of your child”. The amounts mentioned added up to exactly how much we needed to settle the hospital bill! This was how God’s provision was revealed to us.
Closing Thought on God’s Provision: