Today’s story is not pretty. In fact, it’s quite disturbing. But it’s included in the Bible for a reason, and as gory as it is, it’s a message that needs to be shared.
In 2 Kings 6 verses 26-30 we meet two mothers. Earlier in chapter 6 we find unrest between Israel and Syria leading to the king of Syria gathering his army and besieging Samaria. Add to that there was a famine. The economy reached the point where a donkey’s head sold for 80 shekels of silver and a fourth of a cab of dove droppings sold for five shekels of silver. Donkey heads and dove droppings! People were desperate!
In verse 26 the king of Israel is walking along the wall when a woman cries out to him seeking his help. His first response is asking if the Lord won’t help her, how could he possibly help her? But then he asks what it is that’s troubling her.
She responds by saying, “This woman said to me, ‘Give your son, that we may eat him today, and we will eat my son tomorrow.’So we boiled my son, and ate him. And I said to her on the next day, ‘Give your son, that we may eat him’; but she has hidden her son.”
In verse 30, we’re told that the king was so disturbed that responded by tearing his clothes and wearing sackcloth.
Oh, dear ladies. Is that not the most heartrenching, disturbing passage?
Yes, there was a famine. Yes, the Syrians were holding them captive. These were dire times. But when mothers nonchalantly kill their children and think nothing of it, something is wrong. When mothers sacrifice their sons to serve themselves, there’s a bigger problem than lack of food. It’s no wonder the king tore his robes and went around in sackcloth.
Lord God, Oh, what a horrific story to include in the Bible, and yet, we need to see this as a reminder of what happens when people lose sight of You and get consumed with their own selfish needs and desires. Lord, I know that there are probably women who are listening today who are wondering how they’re going to feed their children. Oh, Lord, please provide for their families in a mighty way. Reveal Yourself by not only meeting their basic needs, but show off and bless them with abundance. Forgive us those times when we lose sight of You and try to take matters into our own hands. Make it always abundantly clear what You would have us to do. Guide us. Direct us. We love You. In Christ’s name we pray. Amen.