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Monday, April 16, 2012

N is for Naaman

My A to Z blogging theme is characters in (people from) the scriptures. Since my blog is a book blog, this theme would fit right in and help me strengthen a weakness at the same. How fantastic is that?!  This challenge is a blessing. Thank you A to Z Challenge team!  *Book: LDS quad combo scriptures: KJV Holy Bible, Book of Mormon, Doctrine & Covenants, Pearl of Great Price. (p)1989, (c)1979.

Found in 2 Kings chapter 5, is the subject of today's letter N, Naaman.  Naaman's experience is sure worth a look for it exemplifies the principles of humility, obedience, and faith. 

Naaman was a great warrior, chief captain of the entire army of the Syrians.  He was said to be an honorable man.  One could conclude that he was educated, physically fit, wealthy, and influential.  However, none of that mattered after acquiring leprosy (chronic skin disease).  His future looked bleak until learning from his wife's Israelite maid that a prophet (Elisha) in Samaria could heal.  Using his influence with the king of Syria (Jehoshaphat), asked that the king write a letter to the king of Israel for introduction.  Jehoram, king of Israel, replied, “Only God can perform such miracles.” If Jehoram sent him to Elisha and the prophet failed to heal him, the situation could cause a difficult rift between Israel and Syria. Perhaps, if Naaman were not healed, Jehoshaphat would grow angry and declare war on Jehoram (Old Testament Studen Manual, Religion 302, pg75).  Now Elisha hearing of this sent for Naaman.  Naaman came to the house of Elisha in style ..with chariots, horses, servants, and wealth.  He was expecting to personally be dealt with Elisha and given a grand miracle of healing at the hand of the Lord's anointed.  No such luck.  Instead, Elisha sent a messenger to meet him at the door with instructions for healing, “Go and wash in Jordan seven times, and thy flesh shall come again to thee, and thou shalt be clean.” (2 Kings 5:10).  Angry was Naaman until his servants were able to convince him saying, “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? (2 kings 5:13).  Naaman complied and was healed.  Naaman therefore believed in the god of Israel though still carried obligation to his old faith.  Also, in gratitude, Naaman offered gifts for payment for being healed but Elisha refused.

Interesting tidbits:
  • 7 washing in the water of Jordan symbolic of 7 days of quarantine required of leper in Israel.
  • Miracles need not be dramatic.
  • Servants of the Lord should not get paid for their divine services ..Paul suggested that if one charged for priesthood service, he might abuse his power (1 Corinthians 9:18) ; Also, Jesus taught "Freely ye have received, freely give." (Matthew 10:8).  This is so because it's by divine power that miracles in the hands of the authorized priesthood work, not by the man.


    1. Hello, Jinky! Interesting post! I haven't studied the Bible since high school (I went to Catholic school since kindergarten). There are really amazing stories and characters in the Bible. Thanks for sharing. Have a great week and happy A to Z!!

    2. Thanks for stopping by Laura ..will drop by and visit you too! Have a great week to you as well!

    3. I love this story. The situation today between the two nations and the rest of the world could do with some intervention.
      Syrian's run the little corner store up the hill from us in England. They are honorable people who work hard and support the rest of their family.


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