The Unseen Reality
The situation seemed dire.
The prophet Elisha had helped the king of Israel three times now. The Aramaean king was very distressed that he could not get the advantage against Israel, and he had learned that Elisha was the source of the problem. A good part of the army of the Arameans now surrounded Elisha and his servants.
One of Elisha’s servants saw the great army of the Arameans. What were they going to do? The city of Dothan was not that large, and Elisha surely did not have that many men.
Elisha, however, was not disturbed. When the servant informed Elisha of the matter, he simply responded, “do not fear; there are more that are for us than there are for them.”
Surely the prophet was mad! There before them was the army of the Arameans, with horses and chariots no less, and all that could be found were a few servants of Elisha. How could it be that there were far more on the side of Elisha than on the side of Aram?
And Elisha prayed, and said, O LORD, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha (2 Kings 6:17).
We have here narrated the events of 2 Kings 6:8-17, and they serve as important reminders for us in our own lives. We live in a day and age that focuses almost exclusively on what can be perceived: in the eyes of many, if it cannot be seen, smelled, touched, felt, or heard, it does not exist to them.
Human beings, however, are fallible and limited: while we have great brains and brainpower, the brain is a finite organ, and without a doubt there are realities beyond its ability to perceive. There are many animals who have more developed senses than humans, and as humans increase their technological abilities, more and more of the universe can be perceived than ever before. The Bible reveals for us, however, that there is a reality within our own that we do not perceive: the spiritual world in our midst. We see this with the servant of Elisha: where there seemed to be nothing there appeared chariots of fire. Reality had not changed– the servant’s perception changed!
We can be confident, then, that all around us right now is a spiritual reality that is left unseen to human eyes. We may not know exactly what is around us, but that does not mean that it is not there. Nevertheless, this reality is left hidden from our eyes; this is not some trick of God, but the presentation of the opportunity to believe without having seen (cf. John 20:29).
Right now you may be in the presence of angels, God Himself, or perhaps even a host of flaming chariots. A mere glimpse of this reality would leave you awestruck. The challenge posed to us is to live our lives always realizing by faith that this spiritual reality is in our midst (Hebrews 11:6). We must live as if we are always being seen, for indeed we are always being seen, and all that takes place will be exposed (Luke 8:17).
Now is the time to believe in the unseen reality. If you wait, the unseen reality will be made manifest, and it will be too late (Matthew 25:1-13). Believe and obey God today!
Ethan R. Longhenry