Arrows of Victory: Success Begins in the Mind

2 Kings 11 – 1 Chron 6


Welcome to Sandpoint Seventh-day Adventist Church and also to Adventurer Sabbath. Over the last seventeen weeks we have been going through the amazing stories of the Bible reviewing some of the greatest characters to have ever lived in some of the greatest stories ever told. We have made it together as a church to into the book of 2 Kings (The 12th book of the Bible) — and for those who are reading the Bible through in a year, each sabbath sermon matches where you are in your bible reading. So if you’re visiting for the first time in person or online, and you’d like to go through the bible with us in a year — Just hop onto our website “ and you will see our bible in year program called “Dive Deeper” — You can follow our printable schedule, visit our youtube channel each week to hear a sermon focused on a new bible story or character from that bible reading, we also have printable bible study lessons that match the sermon on our website that you can do on your own or in a small group. Go online, Click “Dive Deeper”, and join us for our Bible in a Year challenge!

The bible character that we will focus on today is Elisha who was the prodige’ of the great prophet Elijah! Elijah is known for fire coming from heaven, for being fed by ravens, for praying for rain, for raising a widows son to live and for being taken to heaven in a fiery chariot. But Elisha is no less a prophet of miracles. It was Elisha that parted the Jordan River by striking it with Elijah’s mantle, healed the waters of Jericho that were poisoned, Multiplied a widows oil so she would not die, Raised the Shunammite woman’s son, fed 100 men with only 20 loaves of bread, and it was through Elisha that the entire Syrian army was defeated when God sent the army of heaven to protect his servant and the mountains were filled with chariots of fire!

[2Ki 6:15-17 NKJV] 15 And when the servant of the man of God arose early and went out, there was an army, surrounding the city with horses and chariots. And his servant said to him, “Alas, my master! What shall we do?” 16 So he answered, “Do not fear, for those who [are] with us [are] more than those who [are] with them.” 17 And Elisha prayed, and said, “LORD, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.” Then the LORD opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw. And behold, the mountain [was] full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.

Truly Elisha was an amazing prophet who walked with our amazing God and saw miracle after miracle performed in his life. Elisha’s miracle filled life illustrate two important spiritual truths:

When you commit your life to God, like Elisha, you too will experience miracles — Miracles happen whenever we live by faith — faith gives room for miracles to happen in your life. Miracles don’t just come to the lucky, they come to those who really rely on God, fully, totally, completely. When you trust the Lord and step out in faith and call on Him, then God is invited to work in miraculous ways in your life and the miracles that appear are evidence of His actions in your life and through your life.  

You can’t walk with God and not impact those around you — As you live a life of faith, the things that God does for you and through you are used by God to impact others — your life becomes a living testimony of the richness of following our heavenly Father.

[Adventurers, the Adventurer pledge says “Because Jesus loves me, I will always do my best.” — and the best thing you could ever do is commit your life to God just like prophet Elisha. Whether you’re 5 or 55 or 95 — God wants us to experience the miraculous life of Elisha]

Another amazing thing about Elisha’s miracles in defeating the Syrians is that Elisha didn’t defeat the Syrians through slaughter, Elisha actually used part of the Adventurer Law to defeat the Syrians… Do you remember the Adventurer Law?

Adventurer Law

Jesus can help me to:

Be obedient

Be pure

Be true

Be kind

Be respectful

Be attentive

Be helpful

Be cheerful

Be thoughtful

Be reverent

Which one do you think Elisha used to defeat the Syrian army? Well let’s find out which one it was, let’s read the story:

[2Ki 6:18-19 NKJV] 18 So when [the Syrians] came down to him, Elisha prayed to the LORD, and said, “Strike this people, I pray, with blindness.” And He struck them with blindness according to the word of Elisha. 19 Now Elisha said to them, “This [is] not the way, nor [is] this the city. Follow me, and I will bring you to the man whom you seek.” But he led them to Samaria.

[2Ki 6:20-23 NKJV] 20 So it was, when they had come to Samaria, that Elisha said, “LORD, open the eyes of these [men], that they may see.” And the LORD opened their eyes, and they saw; and there [they were], inside Samaria! 21 Now when the king of Israel saw them, he said to Elisha, “My father, shall I kill [them]? Shall I kill [them]?” 22 But he answered, “You shall not kill [them]. Would you kill those whom you have taken captive with your sword and your bow? Set food and water before them, that they may eat and drink and go to their master.” 23 Then he prepared a great feast for them; and after they ate and drank, he sent them away and they went to their master. So the bands of Syrian [raiders] came no more into the land of Israel.


Here is an entire army coming to capture the prophet Elisha and take him to the prisons of the Syrian king — and after Elisha leads them all to Samaria and prays for their eyes to be opened, what does Elisha do to this army? Does he smash them all because they are in his power? Does he hurt them because they wanted to hurt him? NO!!!! What Adventurer Law does Elisha practice? — KINDNESS!!!

Jesus tells us:

[Mat 5:44 NKJV] 44 “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you,

Let me ask everyone this question: Is it easier to fight back against those who fight with you, or to give them kindness? Notice what Jesus says happens when we choose the harder road of kindness to those who are not kind to us:

[Luk 6:35 NKJV] 35 “But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil.

When we chose kindness over killing, we reflect the king of kindness! And when we shower others who don’t deserve kindness with true christian courtesy, we are sowing a beneficial harvest for ourselves:

[Pro 11:17 NKJV] 17 The merciful man does good for his own soul, But [he who is] cruel troubles his own flesh.

It comes back friends. What does the Bible say happened as a result of Elisha’s feast of kindness that he offered to the Syrians? The Bible says:

“So the bands of Syrian raiders came no more into the land of Israel” — Elisha’s kindness blessed the Syrians, it blessed all of Israel, and it blessed Elisha! But that isn’t where the blessing ended — you see at the time of Elisha there was a wicked king reigning in Israel, just like there was a wicked king Ahab reining during the time of Elijah.

[2Ki 13:10-11 NKJV] 10 In the thirty-seventh year of Joash king of Judah, Jehoash the son of Jehoahaz became king over Israel in Samaria, [and reigned] sixteen years. 11 And he did evil in the sight of the LORD. He did not depart from all the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel sin, [but] walked in them.

Now I just want to point out that Jehoash of Israel has two ways the bible mentions his name:

(1) Jehoash, (2) Joash in v.9…. This can make it difficult to figure out who the bible is speaking about. The Bible does the same with Simon who is also called Peter, and Saul or is later called


Another confusing thing you will find in the bible is it sometimes mentions people who have the same name and you have to look at the context to figure out who the bible is speaking about. Joash was actually the name of the good king of Judah. This king Joash of Judah was only seven years old when he took the throne, that’s the age of some of our Adventurers here this morning… Could you imagine being king at seven years old?

Well the Bible says in the 37th year of king Joash of Judah, another king by the name of Joash began to reign in Israel… So you have two kings named Joash that were reigning at the exact same time — Joash in the south as king of Judah (That’s the good Joash who served God), and then you have Joash in the north as king of Israel (This is the bad Joash who did evil and didn’t serve the Lord) — and in the midst of the two Joash kings you have Elisha as a prophet.

Well Elisha gets sick — so sick he is about to die — and King Joash goes to meet with the prophet of God… Now which Joash do you think went to visit God’s prophet, the good one who followed God, or the bad one who did evil and didn’t follow God?

[2Ki 13:14 NKJV] 14 Elisha had become sick with the illness of which he would die. Then Joash the king of Israel came down to him, and wept over his face, and said, “O my father, my father, the chariots of Israel and their horsemen!”

It was Joash, king of the North, King of Israel — the Bad King…. Why would the BAD king visit a GOOD prophet? Ahhh, the secret is in the verse we just read. What did Joash king of Israel call Elisha?

“my father, my father, the chariots of Israel and their horsemen”

Can you think of time when Elisha was associated with chariots and horses? Remember the story when Elisha was kind to the Syrians?  

[2Ki 6:17 NKJV] 17 And Elisha prayed, and said, “LORD, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.” Then the LORD opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw. And behold, the mountain [was] full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.

A wicked king of Israel, Joash, hears of the miracle of God’s deliverance from the Syrians through Elisha, and the impact upon Joash is so strong that at the prophets deathbed King Joash comes to seek counsel and help…

This brings us back to the Adventurer Law

Adventurer Law

Jesus can help me to:

Be obedient

Be pure

Be true

Be kind

Be respectful

Be attentive

Be helpful

Be cheerful

Be thoughtful

Be reverent

Each one of these are like beams of light, or flashing arrows, that shine from our life and illuminate others around us… When we are obedient, or pure, or kind, or cheerful or reverent — these character traits reflect the character of Jesus to others and we influence them by having Jesus in our life. Jesus said:

[Mat 5:14 NKJV] 14 “You are the light of the world…

How can we be lights, when Jesus is the real light of the world? The truth is that any light that comes from us, is really the light of Jesus…  

Illustration: Do you remember those old oil lamps, with a big square wick, and a bunch of oil in the bottom glass base of the lamp? How many of you remember those? Anyone still have those in your house? They aren’t like the modern lanterns or lamps we have today… Today you just have to push a button and on comes the light, but back then there were no buttons to push — you had a little knob that you could turn and the wick would go up and down. But you know that lamp didn’t have light intself — you could turn the knob all you wanted, fill it with as much oil as you wanted, didn’t matter how dark the room, or how badly you needed light — until you brought the light to the lamp, the lamp would not give light… But once you brought the light of a match and lit a fire inside the lamp so that the wick was burning, it would shine light for all to see…

[Mat 5:15-16 NKJV] 15 “Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all [who are] in the house. 16 “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

This means much more than simply preaching a doctrinally correct message… The Pharisees at the time of Jesus had doctrine down, they had the message of truth down, but Jesus said: [Mat 23:27 NKJV] 27 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead [men’s] bones and all uncleanness.

What makes the life truly attractive to God is when we reflect Him in our words, our actions, and our attitudes… Purity is attractive, Kindness is attractive, Respectfulness, Attentiveness, Helpfulness, A Cheerful attitude is attractive, Being thoughtful and reverent — These are some of the character traits needed in us that will draw others to Jesus.

Illustration: Take a moment to think about the person in your life who has had the biggest impact on you — What human being in your life has made the biggest impact, I mean influenced you like no one else — Name them out loud!

Why? Was it what they wore? Was it the doctrine they preached? What was it about them?

Elisha lived such a godly life that a wicked king in rebellion to God was drawn to him to seek wisdom which the king himself lacked.  

[Jhn 12:32 NKJV] 32 “And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all [peoples] to Myself.”

Just remember when people are drawn to you, it is because they are drawn to Jesus — and the more of Jesus is in your life, the greater will be your influence in this world.

Notice what Elisha does when a wicked king visits him… Does Elisha judge the king for his many errors? Does he remind the king of his wicked life?

[2Ki 13:14-16 NKJV] 14 Elisha had become sick with the illness of which he would die. Then Joash the king of Israel came down to him, and wept over his face, and said, “O my father, my father, the chariots of Israel and their horsemen!” 15 And Elisha said to him, “Take a bow and some arrows.” So he took himself a bow and some arrows. 16 Then he said to the king of Israel, “Put your hand on the bow.” So he put his hand [on it], and Elisha put his hands on the king’s hands.

Rather than criticize the king, Elisha extends the same grace and kindness he had displayed throughout his life and he immediately seeks to help the king… The king came to mourn over Elisha’s sickness, and Elisha ever forgetful of self understood the need of the king — The kingdom of Israel was being harassed by the Syrians — The King didn’t ask Elisha for help, but Elisha seeing the need immediately put himself aside and sought to meet the need by giving the king courage and hope.

“Take a bow, Take arrows” and then Elisha did something special — He put his hands on the kings, wrapped his arms around the kings shoulders, and grabbed the bow and arrow with the king to shoot an arrow toward Syria… Why?

Elisha was giving to the king an illustration that he would not be left alone to fight the Syrians. If he would turn to God now, although he had been wicked and had a terrible track record, God would still help him. Notice what Elisha says when they shoot the arrow together

[2Ki 13:17 NKJV] 17 …, “The arrow of the LORD’s deliverance and the arrow of deliverance from Syria;…”

What a hopeful way to speak to an evil king! Remember Elisha could have said, “You are wicked and worthless” — Instead he put his hands on the kings, and told him of the Lord’s deliverance — Elisha focused on the good news (Help is Here From GOD, Salvation is nearby in God, Let God’s hands be placed on your hands and victory will be yours) — in greek “Good News” is Euangelion, we translate that as Gospel in english…. Elisha preached a gospel message, a euangelion message, a good news message to the King.

Do you think our world needs the Good News or the Bad News? — Maybe you say both!  

[Mat 24:14 NKJV] 14 “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.

Same word there — Gospel — means “Good News or Glad Tidings” — I am convinced that our world is already filled to the brim with bad news… Cancer, Chronic Illness, Death, Wars, Pestilence, Financial Loss or Difficulty, Depression & Anxiety, Inner thoughts of Self Harm,

Destructive voices of Criticism — We live in perhaps the darkest point in this earth’s history….  

It is in this darkness, to this darkness, that Jesus says “You are the light of the world” — When light is brought in, darkness is dispelled! Friends God is calling us all to be GOSPEL – PREACHERS not Doomsday preachers — To bring in the light of hope, and to remove the cause of despair….  

[Mat 12:20 NKJV] 20 A bruised reed He will not break, And smoking flax He will not quench, Till He sends forth justice to victory;

[Gal 6:1 NKJV] 1 Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who [are] spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted.

[Pro 15:1 NKJV] 1 A soft answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up anger.

[Heb 10:24 NKJV] 24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works,

How important is this to remember not just in our outreach to others outside the church, it’s helpful to remember inside the church too — how we choose to speak to one another, the encouragement we choose to give to one another, the hope that we pour into the soul of those who are fighting for the kingdom of God beside us… And then even greater is the affect that kind, hope-filled, Good News words have in the family circle… We need more Good News proclaimed by fathers and mothers, don’t we? What would it do to the hearts of your children if your focus was consistently on building them up?

[Eph 4:29 NIV] 29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

Now look — Elisha had accepted the king, had spoken the gospel to the king, had encouraged the king towards victory. But unless you believe that victory will come, unless you set your mind in faith on what has been promised, then the promises are useless. Watch what happens next in our story:

[2Ki 13:18-19 NIV] 18 Then he said, “Take the arrows,” and the king took them. Elisha told him, “Strike the ground.” He struck it three times and stopped. 19 The man of God was angry with him and said, “You should have struck the ground five or six times; then you would have defeated Aram and completely destroyed it. But now you will defeat it only three times.” What lesson can we glean from the arrows of victory?