“Go, find out where he is,” the king ordered, “so I can send men and capture him.” The report came back: “He is in Dothan.” Then he sent horses and chariots and a strong force there. They went by night and surrounded the city. When the servant of the man of God got up and went out early the next morning, an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh no, my lord! What shall we do?” the servant asked. “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” And Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, LORD, so that he may see.” Then the LORD opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. As the enemy came down toward him, Elisha prayed to the LORD, “Strike this army with blindness.” So he struck them with blindness, as Elisha had asked. Elisha told them, “This is not the road and this is not the city. Follow me, and I will lead you to the man you are looking for.” And he led them to Samaria. 2 Kings 6:13-19
At this time the king of Aram was at war with Israel (northern tribes). The king of Aram’s efforts against Israel are thwarted time after time by Elisha giving the king of Israel information from the Lord. The king of Aram is enraged and orders his men to find Elisha and capture him. They surround the city of Dothan and started coming in to capture Elisha. I can just see this next scene playing out on a large cinematic screen with cameras scanning the imposing forces. Cameras focus in on Gehazi, Elisha’s servant, who seeing all the horses and chariots surrounding them is scared for his life, “Oh no, my lord! What shall we do?” Elisha enters center stage and calmly tells Gehazi, “Don’t be afraid, for those with us are more than those against us.” Once again the camera comes in for a close up of Elisha who confidently prays, “Open his eyes, Lord, so he may see.” The camera shows Gehazi’s eyes light up in amazement, then begins to do a 360 degree scan of the Lord’s army with horses and chariots of fire standing watch surrounding Elisha. Up lifting, marching type music is blaring, but as the king of Aram’s men begin to approach, the music becomes a scattered, disjointed tune as Elisha prays and the Lord strikes the Arameans with blindness. The scriptures tell us as the blinded men approach Elisha, he tells them they are in the wrong city, but he will lead them to the right city and the man they are looking for. So Elisha leads them to Samaria, where the king of Israel lives.
Once in Samaria, Elisha prays that the blinded men’s eyes would be opened, and they looked around and they were there, inside of Samaria. The king of Israel captures the Arameans, and asks Elisha, “Shall I kill them?” This would be the natural thing to do in that day and circumstance, kill your enemy. But Elisha tells the king not to kill them, in fact to give them food and water and release them to go back to their master. The king did as the prophet Elisha directed him, and they were let go to return to their master. The scripture ends this story with the bands from Aram stopped raiding Israel’s territory. Here is the Proverbs (25:21-22) in action, “If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat, if he is thirsty, give him water to drink. In doing this you will heap burning coals on his head, and the Lord will reward you.” Paul adds on to this Proverb in Romans 12:20-21, saying, “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”