Friday, January 22, 2010

From Thinking To Knowing

II Kings 5:11,15
2Ki 5:11 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.
2Ki 5:15 And he returned to the man of God, he and all his company, and came, and stood before him: and he said, Behold, now I know that there is no God in all the earth, but in Israel: now therefore, I pray thee, take a blessing of thy servant.


Here we have as the star of our story- the big dipper himself, Naaman by name.
A. virtuous citizen. (v.1)
He was a WELL KNOWN Syrian citizen. He was the Norman Schwarzkopf of his day. He had the prestige and prominence that went with such a powerful position.
Power personified, a prime candidate to be featured on "Lifestyles Of the Rich And Famous."
He was the king's right hand man. Vs 1b
B. victorious captain. For "by him the LORD had given deliverance" (v.1C)
Josephus and the Jews think that Naaman was the man who, in a recent war between Syria and Egypt, had loosed off his bow at a venture and killed Ahab, bringing deliverance to Syria and victory to his countrymen. Many medals were on his mantle.
C. valiant commander. "He was a mighty man in valor." (v.1d)
He was known for his courage and his bravery under fire. He had not earned his spur sitting in some desk pushing pencils, but out in front with his men fighting on the frontlines. He had all of the awards, the accolades, the applause, the approval that his king and his country could give to him. He was a man that every mother would want their daughter


The world today loves FAME ! Naaman had it. The world today loves A FORTUNE ! Naaman had it. BUT-that’s not all he had…..!
His royal position- His ruined condition
A. A Captain - He was a Leader among the people of Syria.
B. A Conqueror - He was a Lifter of the people of Syria.
C. A Castaway - He was a Leper, separated from the people.
" the saddest slave in Syria would not change skins with him."
Leprosy was A pitiful sight & A picture of sin!
Naaman's problem was not just his leprous skin. It was his lost soul.
Naaman was not just sick, he was sinful.
Sin is not just a series of CRIMES; sin is a serious CONDITION. We are not sinners because we sin- we sin because we are sinners!
The Bible never speaks of leprosy being cured or healed. It is always cleansed. Because leprosy is the biblical picture of sin. We are never cured of sin, or healed of sin, we are cleansed of sin.
If you LEAVE LEPROSY alone…………you will die. Same for sin- Ezekiel 18:20 The soul that sinneth, it shall die. Any garment that was found defiled with leprosy was burned. Leprosy destines things for the fire. There is only one place for sin, and that is in the fires of God’s judgment.
He had tried every ointment, every salve, every medicine, every doctor, every hospital, every cure, every remedy, but to no avail.
Then a little slave girl, a foreigner, suggests to his wife that he go to a foreign land to a prophet he had never seen, to receive a cure he was not even sure was there. (vv.2-3) What a picture of all Christians. We have with us the message of life and liberty and cleansing and forgiveness but do the powers that be pay any mind?
No. They are too busy exploring space and building faster airplanes and pumping more and more money into education.


Naaman had come to the end of his rope. He had tried everything else. So he goes in to his master, the king of Syria, and tells him of his problem. (v.4)
In return he receives two things: the king's ransom, and the king's recommendation (vv. 5-6)
It was an impressive trove of treasure which Naaman loaded into his caravan. ( 5:5) You see Naaman though that he could PAY for salvation !
Salvation was purchased with the most precious substance in the universe .... the blood of God's Son and it is" without money and without price." ( Isa 55:1) Do you think that you can buy your way into Heaven ? (a)
He thought salvation was for sale, so he took the king's ransom to buy his cure.
God is not for sale. Listen, you not only cannot buy God, God has already bought you. The Bible says, "You have been bought with a price." (I Cor. 6:20)
The richest person in all of the world does not have enough money to buy one square foot of heaven. You cannot buy what is not for sale.
He went to Jehoram the King of Israel ! Naaman is knocking on the Wrong Door ! Governments cannot solve the problems of the world, only God can. Many today are knocking at the wrong door for salvation! Education and legislation are not the answer for the problems of men; the answer is in a transformation by the Gospel of Christ!

Some knock at the door of a Priest ! Somehow they feel that if go regularly to a man and confess their sin they'll receive absolution. But the Bible says, " There is one mediator between God and man the man Christ Jesus." ( 1 Tim 2:5).... there is ONE DOOR where you can find cleansing from the leprosy of sin and that door is the Lord Jesus for He Himself said, " I am the door by me .... saved." ( Jn 10:9)
Salvation, the Bible way is not in:
o Pope, preacher, or people (It's the Person of Christ.)
o Water, wafer or works (It's the Word)
o Church, catechism, or Charisma (It's Christ)
o Holy water, holy cow, or holy laughter.-It's the Holy Ghost!
You say preacher but I’ve been baptized. Did that not save me?
You can be Baptized, Catechized, Civilized, Homogenized, Pasteurized, Sanitized, Americanized, Deodorized, Eulogized, Canonized Glamorized, Hypnotized, Customized, Naturalized, & Modernized
But you will never be saved until you are Evangelized -SAVED BY THE GRACE OF God!!!
(v.7-8) All the king's horses and all the king's men could not put poor Naaman back together again. You cannot buy God with money, and you cannot bribe God with morality. Neither your gold nor your goodness is going to get you anywhere with God.

IV. A GODLY MAN - NAAMAN MET A Powerful Prophet

VS.8 The real hero of the story now comes I, a prophet by the name of Elisha. He was exactly what Naaman needed.
A. He Was A Man Of God
Naaman did not just need a man to do God's work. He needed a man to preach God's word. He didn't just need a man to call on God. He needed a man who was called by God.
1.) He was a faithful man.
Most preachers in Elisha's situation would have said, "Let the king handle that problem, that's what we are paying him for." But not Elisha. He sends word to the king and says, "What Naaman needs is not a politician. What he needs is a prophet and a preacher. Tell him to come to me."
2.) He was fearless.
Naaman rides up to this little prophet's single wide on his beautiful white stallion, surrounded by his soldiers, his medals are gleaming in the sun. -Elisha won't even come out and talk to him. Elisha feared no one but God.
Naaman wanted to be heard. He wanted to be honored, but he needed to be healed. This man of God paid no attention to his position, his power, his prestige, his possessions. Naaman came as a general who happened to be a leper, but he was treated like a leper who happened to be a general. It takes a man of God to confront a man without God about his need for God.
3.) He was also forthright.
He did not tell Naaman what he wanted to hear, but he told him what he needed to hear. He said, "Naaman, I don't care about your reputation. I don't care about your recommendation. You are sick, you are sinful, you need to be healed, and you need to be saved."
B. He Had A Message From God (v.10)
Elisha's message is simple and straight forward. We have a message today that is simple and straight forward--"Jesus Saves!" Now you would think such a simple, sweet, straight forward message would be well received. But notice Naaman's reaction. (v.11)
Naaman had a choice. He could either die in his pride, or he could die to his pride.
The only thing that keeps a person from walking down the aisle of a church is pride. The only thing that keeps a person from getting into a baptistry is pride. The only thing that keeps a person from getting involved in Bible Study is pride. The only thing that keeps a person from selling out to the church is pride.


A. His humiliation
Proud Naaman humbled himself.
1. He submitted to the servants
2. He submitted to the stream
3. He submitted to the saying "according to the saying of the man of God." Before Namman could be cleansed, he must submit to the Word of God.
Hope For Healing Begins With Hearing
Faith is to believe the Word of the Lord , to do it God’s way and not our own.
B. His transformation
Naaman obeyed, and as he result, he was healed. " a little child." He was BORN AGAIN.


Naaman was a different man inside as well as the outside.
A. He returned…He didn’t return to the bartender or the drug pusher!
Acts 4:23 – "And being let go, they went to THEIR OWN company…"
B. He recruited. He got all his men involved. There before all of his soldiers, before all of the world, he professes his faith in God.
C. He remunerated (vs. 15-17).
D. He renounced (v. 17).
" I thought," has given way to " I know." Naaman made a great discovery, the supreme discovery for any soul. What a contrast there is between Naamans first appearance at Elisha's door and his second !

Conclusion: I want you to notice a verse in the NT.
Luke 4:27 — And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Eliseus the prophet; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the Syrian.
There were MANY lepers in the days of Elisha. Why was Naaman the only one healed?
Will you come to Calvary, to the place of cleansing? Isa 1:18