“Don’t be afraid!” Elisha told him. “For there are more on our side than on theirs!” Then Elisha prayed, “O Lord, open his eyes and let him see!” The Lord opened the young man’s eyes, and when he looked up, he saw that the hillside around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire.” 2 Kings 6:16-17
Elisha saw by faith what his servant could not, and he prayed for the servant’s eyes to be opened to the spiritual reality of the situation. Apart from that one sentence to his servant, Elisha didn’t try to convince or persuade his servant any further regarding the heavenly army surrounding them. When he saw that his servant still couldn’t see, Elisha simply prayed.
Most of us have at least one family member who doesn’t know the Lord. Many of us have tried to win them with ‘clever’ persuasion and Biblical arguments and felt frustrated when they just could not see what is as plain as day to us. But there’s a reason they can’t see…..
God is the only one who can open the eyes of the spiritually blind; not our clever arguments, or even our greatest sermons. God may use the words we speak, but the work of opening the eyes of the heart belongs to the Spirit of God.
At Elisha’s prayer, the servant of Elisha suddenly saw, with the eyes of faith. God had opened his eyes spiritually, to see that this fierce army that was threatening them was nothing compared with the vast Heavenly army of horses and chariots of fire that, in turn, surrounded them!
The Eyes of Faith
Notice too, that Elisha didn’t pray that God would change anything about the circumstances. His prayer was that the Lord would open his servant’s eyes, so that he would see the spiritual reality of the situation.
When we understand our spiritual position, and see with the eyes of faith – the eyes of the heart – who we are surrounded by, every moment of every day, we can stand and face any situation.
The Apostle Paul prayed a similar prayer, in Ephesians 1:16-19 “I pray for you constantly, asking God, the glorious Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to give you spiritual wisdom and insight so that you might grow in your knowledge of God. I pray that your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can understand the confident hope he has given to those he called—his holy people who are his rich and glorious inheritance. I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him.”
Notice, Paul didn’t pray that God would give us those things listed in his prayer – his prayer was that God would open our eyes to the truth that they are already ours in Christ Jesus!
Whether you have been praying that someone you know would come to know Jesus, or whether you, as a Christian, find yourself overwhelmed by personal circumstances today, I hope you find encouragement as you think on these two passages of scripture this morning.