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August 11 – Bringing life into the world of death

Serve it to the people, that they may eat. 2 Kings 4:43b Give it to the people, that they may eat. – 2 Kings 4:41b

Scripture reading: 2 Kings 4:38-44

God’s people find themselves in the context of famine. His judgment is upon them because of their unfaithfulness to Him. Yet God mercifully sends the prophets, Elijah and Elisha, to bring His message of repentance, urging their return to Him. To live apart from God is death. The famine shows that.

One of the sons of the prophets scavenges the field, looking for edible ingredients for their pot of stew. He gathers herbs and also a lapful of wild gourds which he slices into the pot of stew. They serve it, not knowing they had gathered poisonous gourds. They eat, and cry out, “Man of God, there is death in the pot!” After Elisha puts flour in the pot, there is no harm. In this miracle, God confirms that His Word brings life into a world of death. God reverses the curse.

Likewise, how could twenty small loaves of bread feed one hundred hungry men? In such adverse conditions, a God-fearing man gave from the first and best he had. He did not have enough, but God blessed and multiplied it. They ate, having some left over.

The calling of the church is to bring the message of life into our world of death. Christ heals. He multiplies His blessings. He sets the table in our midst. Jesus is the life. Jesus says, “Do not labor for the food that perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you” (John 6:27).

Suggestions for prayer

Pray that we may grow more hungry for the food that endures to everlasting life. Pray that our world, which lies in the grip of death, may clearly see the life of our risen Lord Jesus in the church.

Rev. Tony Zekveld currently serves as missionary-pastor in the Hope Congregation in East Brampton, Ontario, sent by Covenant Christian Church (URCNA) of Wyoming, Ontario. Rev. Zekveld and his wife, Arley-Ann, have five children and, so far, eight grandchildren. This daily devotional is also available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.


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