Elisha prophesies plenty. (1,2) The flight of the Syrian army. (3-11) Samaria plentifully supplied. (12-20)
Verses 1-2 Man's extremity is God's opportunity of making his own power to be glorious: his time to appear for his people is when their strength is gone. Unbelief is a sin by which men greatly dishonour and displease God, and deprive themselves of the favours he designed for them. Such will be the portion of those that believe not the promise of eternal life; they shall see it at a distance, but shall never taste of it. But no temporal deliverances and mercies will in the end profit sinners, unless they are led to repentance by the goodness of God.
Verses 3-11 God can, when he pleases, make the stoutest heart to tremble; and as for those who will not fear God, he can make them fear at the shaking of a leaf. Providence ordered it, that the lepers came as soon as the Syrians were fled. Their consciences told them that mischief would befall them, if they took care of themselves only. Natural humanity, and fear of punishment, are powerful checks on the selfishness of the ungodly. These feelings tend to preserve order and kindness in the world; but they who have found the unsearchable riches of Christ, will not long delay to report the good tidings to others. From love to him, not from selfish feelings, they will gladly share their earthly good things with their brethren.
Verses 12-20 Here see the wants of Israel supplied in a way they little thought of, which should encourage us to depend upon the power and goodness of God in our greatest straits. God's promise may be safely relied on, for no word of his shall fall to the ground. The nobleman that questioned the truth of Elisha's word, saw the plenty, to silence and shame his unbelief, and therein saw his own folly; but he did not eat of the plenty he saw. Justly do those find the world's promises fail them, who think that the promises of God will disappoint them. Learn how deeply God resents distrust of his power, providence, and promise: how uncertain life is, and the enjoyments of it: how certain God's threatenings are, and how sure to come on the guilty. May God help us to inquire whether we are exposed to his threatenings, or interested in his promises.
This chapter begins with a prophecy of great plenty in Samaria on the morrow, and of the death of an unbelieving lord, 2Ki 7:1,2, relates the case of four lepers, who that night went into the Syrian camp, which was deserted, occasioned by the noise of chariots, horses, and a host, which they fancied they heard, 2Ki 7:3-9, the report which the lepers made to the king's household of this affair, and the method the king's servants took to know the truth of it, 2Ki 7:10-15 which, when confirmed, the people went out and spoiled the tents of the Syrians, whereby the prophecy of plenty was fulfilled, 2Ki 7:16, and the unbelieving lord having post at the gate of the city assigned him, was trod to death, and so the prediction concerning him had its accomplishment also, 2Ki 7:17-20.