“He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance with increase: this is also vanity. When goods increase, they are increased that eat them: and what good is there to the owners thereof, saving the beholding of them with their eyes” (Eccl. 5:10-11)?
“And he said, That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man. For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man (Mark 7:20-23).
2 Kings 5:20-27
20 But Gehazi, the servant of Elisha the man of God, said, Behold, my master hath spared Naaman this Syrian, in not receiving at his hands that which he brought: but, as the LORD liveth, I will run after him, and take somewhat of him.
21 So Gehazi followed after Naaman. And when Naaman saw him running after him, he lighted down from the chariot to meet him, and said, Is all well?
22 And he said, All is well. My master hath sent me, saying, Behold, even now there be come to me from mount Ephraim two young men of the sons of the prophets: give them, I pray thee, a talent of silver, and two changes of garments.
23 And Naaman said, Be content, take two talents. And he urged him, and bound two talents of silver in two bags, with two changes of garments, and laid them upon two of his servants; and they bare them before him.
24 And when he came to the tower, he took them from their hand, and bestowed them in the house: and he let the men go, and they departed.
25 But he went in, and stood before his master. And Elisha said unto him, Whence comest thou, Gehazi? And he said, Thy servant went no whither.
26 And he said unto him, Went not mine heart with thee, when the man turned again from his chariot to meet thee? Is it a time to receive money, and to receive garments, and oliveyards, and vineyards, and sheep, and oxen, and menservants, and maidservants?27 The leprosy therefore of Naaman shall cleave unto thee, and unto thy seed for ever. And he went out from his presence a leper as white as snow.
1.We can’t really tell what was in Naaman’s mind when he first went to the king instead of the prophet as the little servant girl had suggested, but notice how Elisha responds to Naaman’s visit in 2 Kings 5:10-11. Compare Elisha’s reaction to Jesus’ and Paul’s response to those who exalt themselves (Matt. 22:15-17; Mark 12:13-14; Luke 20:20-22; Gal. 2:5).
2.Pride is sinful, but just how odious is covetousness to our Heavenly Father? From where do these evil things come (Mark 7:20-23)?
3.In ancient times, what gifts were usually given to show honor and favor (2 Kings 5:5; Gen. 41:42; Est. 6:8; Dan. 5:7)? Would Gehazi qualify in any way to receive such gifts?
4.What was in Gehazi’s mind as he ran after Naaman to take something from him (2 Kings 5:20)?
5.What was Gehazi’s lie that would cause Naaman to give him what had been intended for Elisha (2 Kings 5:22)?
6.Many prophets accepted gifts for prophecies given or miracles performed, (1 Sam. 9:7-8; 1 Kings 14:3). Was Elisha covetous of Naaman’s gifts (2 Kings 5:16; Acts 8:20)?
7.What “blessing” (gift) had Naaman offered to Elisha (2 Kings 5:5; 15-16)?
8.How much did Gehazi ask from Naaman (2 Kings 5:22)?
9.Why did he only asked that much?
10.How heavy was the silver which Naaman gave to Gehazi? How many men did it take to carry it (2 Kings 5:23)?
11.Summarize the rebuke given by Elisha. What was the extent of the sin committed by Gehazi (2 Kings 5:26)?
12.What was Gehazi’s punishment for his covetous deed (2 Kings 5:27)?