1st Reading – 2 Kings 4:8-11, 14-16a
One day Elisha came to Shunem,
where there was a woman of influence, who urged him to dine with her.
Afterward, whenever he passed by, he used to stop there to dine.
So she said to her husband, “I know that Elisha is a holy man of God.
Since he visits us often, let us arrange a little room on the roof
and furnish it for him with a bed, table, chair, and lamp,
so that when he comes to us he can stay there.”
Sometime later Elisha arrived and stayed in the room overnight.
Later Elisha asked, “Can something be done for her?”
His servant Gehazi answered, “Yes!
She has no son, and her husband is getting on in years.”
Elisha said, “Call her.”
When the woman had been called and stood at the door,
Elisha promised, “This time next year
you will be fondling a baby son.”
The second book of Kings deals mainly with the wars between the kingdoms of Judah (southern) and Israel (northern), and the attacks on them from outside. The situation became even more critical when the Assyrians invaded, first in the 9th century BC and more vigorously in the 8th. Samaria, the capital of the Northern Kingdom (Israel), fell in 721 BC, and later Judah also became an Assyrian vassal.
Today’s reading is one of ten stories in 2 Kings about the prophet Elisha. By literary form it is a legend, that is, a traditional story handed down through oral tradition to build up a hero as a model for succeeding generations. What’s unique is that the stories about Elisha are not building up Elisha as a hero, they are building up God as a hero. Continue reading “Jun 28, 2020: 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A)”