The royal officer on whose hand the king was leaning answered the man of God and said, “Behold, if the Lord should make windows in heaven, could this thing be?”… (7:2).
The famine was severe. And with full confidence, Elisha boldly declares that it will all turn around; in just one day. A seemingly impossible feat. Yet, God had been continually demonstrating His sovereign power over His creation, and even over death through His prophet, Elisha.
But still the royal officer doubts, perhaps even more than doubts. With such a judgment leveled against the LORD, it is likely the officer’s commentary was intended to disparage God’s very character, faithfulness and ability.
“…if the Lord should make windows in heaven, could this thing be?” Then he said, “Behold, you will see it with your own eyes, but you will not eat of it.” (7:2).
I felt a visit to Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance was necessary to examine his use of three words used in the NASB translation, “if,” “make,” and “windows,” to help to shed some light on the swift judgment incurred.
- If: “הִנֵּה hinnēh: A interjection meaning behold, look, now; if [emphasis added]. It is used often and expresses strong feelings, surprise, hope, expectation, certainty, thus giving vividness depending on its surrounding context… It can call attention to something about to happen, a future reference In a few passages, it has the sense of if…”
- Make: “6213. עָשָׂה ʿāśāh: A verb meaning to do, to make, to accomplish, to complete. This frequently used Hebrew verb conveys the central notion of performing an activity with a distinct purpose, a moral obligation, or a goal in view (cf. Gen. 11:6). Particularly, it was used in conjunction with God’s commands…”
The royal officer’s choice in using if and make in referring to God, perhaps divulges his misguided opinion, insinuating God is unable to accomplish the impossible and achieve His purpose.
- Windows: “699. אֲרֻבָּה ʾarubbāh: A feminine noun meaning floodgate, window. It refers generally to windows in a house … Figuratively, it refers to windows or floodgates of the sky (Gen. 7:11; 8:2) which God controls. In general, it refers to God’s ability to provide an abundance of anything (2 Kgs. 7:2, 19) but also to the windows through which God pours judgments from on high.”
Consider Him Who Makes Windows in Heaven
Windows can be both opened and closed. Windows in Heaven can only be opened or closed by Him Who Makes Windows in Heaven.
This is not the first time in Scripture we come across the concept of “windows in heaven.”
He Opens Windows in Heaven to send forth His judgment.
In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep burst forth, and the windows of the heavens were opened, (Genesis 7:11 ESV).
He who flees at the sound of the terror shall fall into the pit, and he who climbs out of the pit shall be caught in the snare. For the windows of heaven are opened, and the foundations of the earth tremble, (Isaiah 24:18).
He Closes Windows in Heaven to restrain His judgment.
The fountains of the deep and the windows of the heavens were closed, the rain from the heavens was restrained, (Genesis 8:2 ESV).
He Opens Windows in Heaven to send forth His blessing.
“Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this,” says the LORD of hosts, “if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows,” (Malachi 3:10).
And as I consider Him Who Makes Windows in Heaven, I am once again undone. I can’t get over His Heart. Why He bothers.
- His Heart to close His Window of judgment. “Say to them, ‘As I live!’ declares the Lord GOD, ‘I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn back, turn back from your evil ways! Why then will you die, O house of Israel?’” (Ezekiel 33:11).
- His Heart of patience in withholding His Window of judgment.But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day. 9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance, (2 Peter 3:9).
Same Windows. Same God. He sends both His judgment and His blessing; and because He is perfectly holy, righteous and just, in keeping with His perfect character, He must judge sin.
And because we are all judged guilty, by His grace, He alone Opened His Window of Salvation.
for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (Romans 3:23).
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord, (Romans 6:23).
- His Heart of love to Open His Window of eternal life in sending His Son for all who would believe.“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life,” (John 3:16).
- His Heart of faithful mercy to Open His Window of forgiveness in becoming a man to make propitiation (atonement) for the sins of the people.Therefore, He had to be made like His brethren in all things, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people, (Hebrews 2:17).
- And His Heart of lavish grace to Open His windows of blessings for all who place their hope in Him.Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love 5 He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. 7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace 8 which He lavished on us… (Ephesians 1:3-8).
How do we respond to Him Who Makes Windows in Heaven?
First things first… If you have never surrendered your whole being to Jesus Christ, today can be that day!
Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God,” (John 3:3).
“…what must I do to be saved?” 31 They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved… (Acts 16:30-31).
Today, if you hear His voice, open your heart to Him; by faith ask Him to save you, receive His forgiveness and His promise that you will be saved to live in holy fellowship with Him for all of eternity.
“Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me. 21 He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne,” (Revelation 3:20-21).
Today, if you have been born again by trusting Christ for His forgiveness of sin, praise Him for His Great Mercy to Open His Window of Eternal Salvation… to you!
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time, (1 Peter 1:3-5)
Faith in Christ is our assurance for all eternity. He is constant and unchanging. He Makes Windows in Heaven, Opening them with His good and perfect gifts. But He does not bless so that we can become hoarders of His gifts. He has called us to grow to become like Him, that we would share the blessings we have received with others.
Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. 18 In the exercise of His will He brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we would be a kind of first fruits among His creatures, (James 1:17-18)