2 Kings 5:25
But he went in, and stood before his master. And Elisha said to him, From where come you, Gehazi? And he said, Your servant went no where.
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(25) But he.—And he himself (after putting away his ill-gotten gains).

Went in.—Into his master’s chamber. Gehazi was already in the house.

Stood before.—Came forward to (2Chronicles 6:12).

Thy servant went no whither.—Literally, Thy servant went not away hither nor thither.

5:20-27 Naaman, a Syrian, a courtier, a soldier, had many servants, and we read how wise and good they were. Elisha, a holy prophet, a man of God, has but one servant, and he proves a base liar. The love of money, that root of all evil, was at the bottom of Gehazi's sin. He thought to impose upon the prophet, but soon found that the Spirit of prophecy could not be deceived, and that it was in vain to lie to the Holy Ghost. It is folly to presume upon sin, in hopes of secrecy. When thou goest aside into any by-path, does not thy own conscience go with thee? Does not the eye of God go with thee? He that covers his sin, shall not prosper; particularly, a lying tongue is but for a moment. All the foolish hopes and contrivances of carnal worldlings are open before God. It is not a time to increase our wealth, when we can only do it in such ways as are dishonourable to God and religion, or injurious to others. Gehazi was punished. If he will have Naaman's money, he shall have his disease with it. What was Gehazi profited, though he gained two talents, when thereby he lost his health, his honour, his peace, his service, and, if repentance prevented not, his soul for ever? Let us beware of hypocrisy and covetousness, and dread the curse of spiritual leprosy remaining on our souls.Lest his absence should be noticed, Gehazi hastened, without being called, to appear before his master. In the East it is usual for servants to remain most of the day in their lord's presence, only quitting it when given some order to execute. 23. in two bags—People in the East, when travelling, have their money, in certain sums, put up in bags. No text from Poole on this verse. But he went in, and stood before his master,.... To know his will, and minister to him, as he had used to do, and as if he had never been from the house:

and Elisha said unto him, whence comest thou, Gehazi? where had he been, and where was he last?

and he said, thy servant went no whither; he pretended he had never been out of doors, which was another impudent lie; one would have thought that he who had lived so long with the prophet, and had seen the miracles wrought by him, and knew with what a spirit of prophecy he was endowed, would never have ventured to tell such an untruth, since he might expect to be detected; but covetousness had blinded his eyes and hardened his heart.

But he went in, and stood before his master. And Elisha said unto him, Whence comest thou, Gehazi? And he said, Thy servant went no whither.
25. and stood before his master] He would let his absence be as little noted as possible. In the East the servants are usually kept in waiting. Hence the phrase ‘to stand before’ is frequent in connexion with Oriental service. Thus David ‘stands before Saul (1 Samuel 16:21-22), so of Abishag (1 Kings 1:2). See also 1 Kings 10:8; Daniel 1:5, &c.Verse 25. - But he went in, and stood before his master. Gehazi, lest his absence should be noticed, as soon as he had put away the money, sought his master's presence, entering the room casually, as if he had been busied about the house. He was met at once, however, by the plain and stern question which follows. And Elisha said unto him; Whence comest thou, Gehazi? literally, Whence, Gehazi? A short, stem, abrupt question. And he said, Thy servant went no whither. There was no help for it. One lie necessitates another. Once enter on the devious path, and you cannot say whither it will conduct you. To deceive and plunder a foreigner of a hostile nation probably seemed to Gehazi a trifle, either no sin at all, or a very venial sin. But now he finds himself led on to telling a direct lie to his master, which even he could not have justified to himself. Elisha answered, "Go in peace," wishing the departing Syrian the peace of God upon the road, without thereby either approving or disapproving the religious conviction which he had expressed. For as Naaman had not asked permission to go with his king into the temple of Rimmon, but had simply said, might Jehovah forgive him or be indulgent with him in this matter, Elisha could do nothing more, without a special command from God, than commend the heathen, who had been brought to belief in the God of Israel as the true God by the miraculous cure of his leprosy, to the further guidance of the Lord and of His grace.

(Note: Most of the earlier theologians found in Elisha's words a direct approval of the religious conviction expressed by Naaman and his attitude towards idolatry; and since they could not admit that a prophet would have permitted a heathen alone to participate in idolatrous ceremonies, endeavoured to get rid of the consequence resulting from it, viz., licitam ergo esse Christianis συμφώνησιν πιστοῦ μετὰ ἀπιστοῦ, seu symbolizationem et communicationem cum ceremonia idololatrica, either by appealing to the use of השׁתּחות and to the distinction between incurvatio regis voluntaria et religiosa (real worship) and incurvatio servilis et coacta Naemani, quae erat politica et civilis (mere prostration from civil connivance), or by the ungrammatical explanation that Naaman merely spoke of what he had already done, not of what he would do in future (vid., Pfeiffer, Dub. vex. p. 445ff., and J. Meyer, ad Seder Olam, p. 904ff., Budd., and others). - Both are unsatisfactory. The dreaded consequence falls of itself if we only distinguish between the times of the old covenant and those of the new. Under the old covenant the time had not yet come in which the heathen, who came to the knowledge of the true deity of the God of Israel, could be required to break off from all their heathen ways, unless they would formally enter into fellowship with the covenant nation.)

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