2 Kings 4:3
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
Elisha said, "Go around and ask all your neighbors for empty jars. Don't ask for just a few.

New Living Translation
And Elisha said, "Borrow as many empty jars as you can from your friends and neighbors.

English Standard Version
Then he said, “Go outside, borrow vessels from all your neighbors, empty vessels and not too few.

New American Standard Bible
Then he said, "Go, borrow vessels at large for yourself from all your neighbors, even empty vessels; do not get a few.

King James Bible
Then he said, Go, borrow thee vessels abroad of all thy neighbours, even empty vessels; borrow not a few.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Then he said, "Go and borrow empty containers from everyone--from all your neighbors. Do not get just a few.

International Standard Version
He told her, "Go out to all of your neighbors in the surrounding streets and borrow lots of pots from them. Don't get just a few empty vessels, either.

NET Bible
He said, "Go and ask all your neighbors for empty containers. Get as many as you can.

New Heart English Bible
Then he said, "Go, borrow containers from of all your neighbors, even empty containers. Do not borrow just a few.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Elisha said, "Borrow many empty containers from all your neighbors.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Then he said: 'Go, borrow thee vessels abroad of all thy neighbours, even empty vessels; borrow not a few.

New American Standard 1977
Then he said, “Go, borrow vessels at large for yourself from all your neighbors, even empty vessels; do not get a few.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And he said, Go, borrow vessels from all thy neighbours, empty vessels; borrow not a few.

King James 2000 Bible
Then he said, Go, borrow you vessels outside of all your neighbors, even empty vessels; borrow not a few.

American King James Version
Then he said, Go, borrow you vessels abroad of all your neighbors, even empty vessels; borrow not a few.

American Standard Version
Then he said, Go, borrow thee vessels abroad of all thy neighbors, even empty vessels; borrow not a few.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And he said to her: Go, borrow of all thy neighbours empty vessels not a few.

Darby Bible Translation
And he said, Go, borrow for thyself vessels abroad from all thy neighbours, empty vessels; let it not be few;

English Revised Version
Then he said, Go, borrow thee vessels abroad of all thy neighbours, even empty vessels; borrow not a few.

Webster's Bible Translation
Then he said, Go, borrow thee vessels abroad of all thy neighbors, even empty vessels; borrow not a few.

World English Bible
Then he said, "Go, borrow containers from of all your neighbors, even empty containers. Don't borrow just a few.

Young's Literal Translation
And he saith, 'Go, ask for thee vessels from without, from all thy neighbours -- empty vessels -- let them not be few;
Study Bible
Elisha Multiplies the Widow's Oil
2Elisha said to her, "What shall I do for you? Tell me, what do you have in the house?" And she said, "Your maidservant has nothing in the house except a jar of oil." 3Then he said, "Go, borrow vessels at large for yourself from all your neighbors, even empty vessels; do not get a few. 4"And you shall go in and shut the door behind you and your sons, and pour out into all these vessels, and you shall set aside what is full."…
Cross References
2 Kings 4:2
Elisha said to her, "What shall I do for you? Tell me, what do you have in the house?" And she said, "Your maidservant has nothing in the house except a jar of oil."

2 Kings 4:4
"And you shall go in and shut the door behind you and your sons, and pour out into all these vessels, and you shall set aside what is full."
Treasury of Scripture

Then he said, Go, borrow you vessels abroad of all your neighbors, even empty vessels; borrow not a few.

empty vessels

2 Kings 3:16 And he said, Thus said the LORD, Make this valley full of ditches.

John 2:7 Jesus said to them, Fill the water pots with water. And they filled …

borrow not a few [heb] scant not

2 Kings 13:18,19 And he said, Take the arrows. And he took them. And he said to the …

Psalm 81:10 I am the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt: …

John 16:24 Till now have you asked nothing in my name: ask, and you shall receive, …

(3) Abroad.--Literally, from the outside (of the house); out of doors.

Borrow not a few.--See margin. Do not scant, or stint, namely, to borrow.

Verse 3. - Then he said, Go, borrow thee vessels abroad of all thy neighbors, even empty vessels; borrow not a few. God stints not in his gifts (Isaiah 55:1). When he offers them, men should take advantage of the offer largely, in the same spirit in which it is made (see below, 2 Kings 13:19). Then he said, go, borrow thee vessels abroad of all thy neighbours,.... For he perceived that she had none:

even empty vessels; which they might more readily lend her:

borrow not a few; but as many as she could get; the prophet, under a divine impulse, was directed to say this to her, foreseeing, by a spirit of prophecy, that a large quantity of oil would be given her. 4:1-7 Elisha's miracles were acts of real charity: Christ's were so; not only great wonders, but great favours to those for whom they were wrought. God magnifies his goodness with his power. Elisha readily received a poor widow's complaint. Those that leave their families under a load of debt, know not what trouble they cause. It is the duty of all who profess to follow the Lord, while they trust to God for daily bread, not to tempt him by carelessness or extravagance, nor to contract debts; for nothing tends more to bring reproach upon the gospel, or distresses their families more when they are gone. Elisha put the widow in a way to pay her debt, and to maintain herself and her family. This was done by miracle, but so as to show what is the best method to assist those who are in distress, which is, to help them to improve by their own industry what little they have. The oil, sent by miracle, continued flowing as long as she had empty vessels to receive it. We are never straitened in God, or in the riches of his grace; all our straitness is in ourselves. It is our faith that fails, not his promise. He gives more than we ask: were there more vessels, there is enough in God to fill them; enough for all, enough for each; and the Redeemer's all-sufficiency will only be stayed from the supplying the wants of sinners and saving their souls, when no more apply to him for salvation. The widow must pay her debt with the money she received for her oil. Though her creditors were too hard with her, yet they must be paid, even before she made any provision for her children. It is one of the main laws of the Christian religion, that we pay every just debt, and give every one his own, though we leave ever so little for ourselves; and this, not of constraint, but for conscience' sake. Those who bear an honest mind, cannot with pleasure eat their daily bread, unless it be their own bread. She and her children must live upon the rest; that is, upon the money received for the oil, with which they must put themselves into a way to get an honest livelihood. We cannot now expect miracles, yet we may expect mercies, if we wait on God, and seek to him. Let widows in particular depend upon him. He that has all hearts in his hand, can, without a miracle, send as effectual a supply.
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