Read the “0427 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon
“Now Naaman, captain of the host of the king of Syria, was a great man with his master, and honourable, because by him the LORD had given deliverance unto Syria: he was also a mighty man in valour, but he was a leper.” (2Kings 5:1)
Good morning. And…
Congratulations! You have won a FREE trip to Bermuda! Wow, a free cruise? A gift for me? Well not exactly. First you need to drive to King-Of-Prussia, PA to pick up your tickets. Then you need to spend several hours with a high pressure salesman as he explains that the product produced by the company who is giving you the FREE trip is something you just can’t live without. The price for this product that you can’t live without (even though the world has done without it for 6000 years) is more than you can afford. But it is cheaper than your FREE (?) cruise to Bermuda. So you sign the contract, get your tickets, and your off to Bermuda… next week, after you drive to Florida, where the ship is leaving from. And to top everything off, your ship sails right through the Bermuda Triangle, you disappear forever, and you never get to see Bermuda, or enjoy whatever it is you signed the contract to buy.
Nothing is free, it always costs somebody something. Well, do we still live in a free country? Then how come I have to pay taxes? You still have freedom of speech, you say. Then why is it considered a hate crime when I quote God as saying homosexuality is an abomination? Even the freedom that we have was not free. Others died for those freedoms that are being tossed aside by the Liberal-Nazi-Commi-Socialists. Nothing is free. Except…
In Matthew chapter 10, Jesus is about to send His disciples to the people of Israel.
“These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.” (Matthew 10:5-8)
Jesus told them they received the power to heal the sick, cleanse lepers, raise the dead, and cast out devils freely. They should use this power freely to help others.
“And the king of Syria said, Go to, go, and I will send a letter unto the king of Israel. And he departed, and took with him ten talents of silver, and six thousand pieces of gold, and ten changes of raiment. And he brought the letter to the king of Israel, saying, Now when this letter is come unto thee, behold, I have therewith sent Naaman my servant to thee, that thou mayest recover him of his leprosy. And it came to pass, when the king of Israel had read the letter, that he rent his clothes, and said, Am I God, to kill and to make alive, that this man doth send unto me to recover a man of his leprosy? wherefore consider, I pray you, and see how he seeketh a quarrel against me. And it was so, when Elisha the man of God had heard that the king of Israel had rent his clothes, that he sent to the king, saying, Wherefore hast thou rent thy clothes? let him come now to me, and he shall know that there is a prophet in Israel. So Naaman came with his horses and with his chariot, and stood at the door of the house of Elisha. And Elisha sent a messenger unto him, saying, Go and wash in Jordan seven times, and thy flesh shall come again to thee, and thou shalt be clean. But Naaman was wroth, and went away, and said, Behold, I thought, He will surely come out to me, and stand, and call on the name of the LORD his God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover the leper. Are not Abana and Pharpar, rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? may I not wash in them, and be clean? So he turned and went away in a rage. And his servants came near, and spake unto him, and said, My father, if the prophet had bid thee do some great thing, wouldest thou not have done it? how much rather then, when he saith to thee, Wash, and be clean? Then went he down, and dipped himself seven times in Jordan, according to the saying of the man of God: and his flesh came again like unto the flesh of a little child, and he was clean.” (2Kings 5:5-14)
In 2Kings 5, we have the story of Naaman the leper. God used Elisha the prophet to heal Naaman of his leprosy. Naaman tried to give gold, silver, and clothing to Elisha to say thank you. Elisha would not accept these. Freely he received, so freely he gave. So Naaman started on his journey back to Syria. But Gehazi, Elisha’s servant, did not understand. Gehazi ran after Naaman, and lied to get two talents of silver, and two changes of garments. After Gehazi received the items and returned home…
“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. 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? 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.” (2Kings 5:25-27)
God’s gift of salvation is the only thing that is truly free to us, yet millions refuse to believe this.
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)
Salvation is a free gift: you cannot work for it, you cannot buy it.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)
Salvation: God gave it; Jesus paid for it, and now offers it freely to you: it’s a gift.
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