Some men who are held in high esteem because of position, ability or wealth can conceive of serving God only by doing those things deemed to be great deeds — they think BIG. However, great deeds and great men may well be man’s labels and do not necessarily reflect God’s views.
Naaman was a great man. a captain of the Syrian army but all his majesty and power could not conquer leprosy. He sought cleansing from the God of Israel by going to the king of the land, but the king was perplexed and said, “Am I God, to kill and to make alive, that this man doth send unto me to recover a man of his leprosy?” (2 Ki. 5:7). He wanted no part of the deal. The Great God is an infrequent guest in kings palaces and non-resident in majestic houses of worship in which men glory. That’s not great, Naaman, you went to the wrong place!
Naaman waited outside Elisha’s house for the prophet to come out, call upon his God and wave his hand over “the leprosy” but word came from Elisha’s servant — “Go and wash in the Jordan seven times.., and thou shalt be clean” (v. 10).
“Abanah and Pharpar are BETTER than all the rivers in Israel, I’ll wash in them.” Thats not great, Naaman — you missed the point and made yourself the judge of how to cleanse leprosy. Today’s Naamans proudly reject Gods simple conditions for cleansing sin and tell HIM how THEY want to be saved.
The ten talents of silver, six thousand pieces of gold and ten changes of raiment are proof of desire to do great deeds and dipping in the muddy Jordan wasn’t the right price. “If the prophet had bid you do some great thing you would have done it” (v. 13). Then why not do the small task commanded of God? Naaman dipped himself seven times and was cleansed by God. Now you understand, Naaman — true greatness is humbly submitting to Gods way.
Men seek great ways to serve God and teachers become great preachers and Jesus says, “For he that is least among you all, the same is great” (Lk. 9:48). Covet the day when the back of the head is seen more than the lift of the chin.