Elisha and The Widow in 2 Kings 4: What Have You in the House?

By | December 28, 2010

Elisha and the Widow in 2 Kings 4: What Have You in the House?

Elisha and the Widow’s Oil
2 Kings 4:1-7

4:1 Now the wife of one of the sons of the prophets cried to Elisha, “Your servant my husband is dead, and you know that your servant feared the Lord, but the creditor has come to take my two children to be his slaves.”

2 And Elisha said to her, “What shall I do for you? Tell me; what have you in the house?” And she said, “Your servant has nothing in the house except a jar of oil.”

3 Then he said, “Go outside, borrow vessels from all your neighbors, empty vessels and not too few. 4 Then go in and shut the door behind yourself and your sons and pour into all these vessels. And when one is full, set it aside.”

5 So she went from him and shut the door behind herself and her sons. And as she poured they brought the vessels to her. 6 When the vessels were full, she said to her son, “Bring me another vessel.” And he said to her, “There is not another.” Then the oil stopped flowing.

7 She came and told the man of God, and he said, “Go, sell the oil and pay your debts, and you and your sons can live on the rest.”


“What have you in the house?” Elisha asks the widow in 2 Kings 4.

Since hearing a talk on this passage many years ago, I have not forgotten its power.

Elisha could have offered any number of solutions to this woman’s predicament (God used him to bring the dead to life). Instead, he calmly asks her to look in her house.

The widow is facing terrible circumstances, isn’t she? She has no husband, lots of debt, and no money. She’s certain her sons will be taken from her, too.

Yet God chooses to save her, her family, her reputation, and her future through his prophet Elisha and some common household goods.

I love this passage for its simplistic picture of God’s extraordinary power in the “ordinaryness” of life. I love what the passage teaches me about my need and how my God can and will meet it.

Look in your house.

There you’ll find:

  • Your priority.
  • Your passion.
  • Your provision.
God comes to us in the very ordinary, every single day, in the most basic ways.

What do you need?

Look in your house.

(And that’s how I named this blog.)

Look in your house. There you’ll find your priority, passion, and provision.

photo: ladyheart at morguefile.com


Important Reminders

Please note: this blog features affiliate links. Should you make a purchase using my link, I will receive a small commission in exchange for my referral.
The following two tabs change content below.
Mary Bernard is a Nashville-based writer and mother of three. She's worked in a variety of corporate and creative environments, but none is more comfortable than the dining room table in her own home. Mary loves to help moms discover God's unique call to look in their own houses for their priorities, passions, and provision.

3 thoughts on “Elisha and The Widow in 2 Kings 4: What Have You in the House?

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention What Have You in the House? (Elisha and The Widow’s Oil in 2 Kings 4) | Look In Your House -- Topsy.com

  2. Pingback: Living Richly Among the Ordinary | Look In Your House

  3. Pingback: Freedom to Be the Woman God Made You to Be | Look In Your House

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge