The story of the floating ax head appears in 2 Kings 6. As the story goes, under Elisha’s leadership, enrollment at the school of the prophets was up and new facilities were needed. So off the students went to a nearby forrest to chop down trees for lumber. That’s when the accident occurred. As one of the students was swinging his ax, the ax head came loose and went flying into the Jordan River. To make matters worse, the ax was borrowed.
Have you ever borrowed something from a friend only to lose it? Not good, especially if what you borrowed was expensive. Iron was a rare and expensive commodity in ancient Israel. To lose an expensive ax head was bad enough. The fact that it was borrowed made it worse still.
Elisha did not panic. He asked the young to man to show him where in the river the ax head sank. Showing Elisha the place, the prophet cut down a branch and threw it into the water. As everyone watched in wonder, the ax head suddenly floated to the surface. Retrieving the ax head, the young man replaced it and went back to work. End of story.
Okay, interesting story. But what’s the point?
In the previous chapter we read about the miraculous healing of Naaman, the Syrian Captain. Naaman was an important official. He was afflicted with the dread disease of leprosy. But at Elisha’s command, Naaman dipped himself seven times in the Jordan and was instantly healed.
Then we turn to 2 Kings 6 and read about some poor, unnamed Bible College student who lost a borrowed ax head and I’m thinking — Really?! The writer takes us from a Syrian Captain with leprosy to a Bible College student who lost a borrowed ax head.
So why is this miracle even recorded in the Bible? Because God wants us to know that He cares about the everyday problems of everyday people. The miracle of 2 Kings 5 tells us there is nothing too big for God. The miracle of 2 Kings 6 tells us there is nothing too small for God.
God cares about the extraordinary, and the ordinary things of life. No matter how big or how small your need might be, follow the direction given in 1 Peter 5:7 and cast all your care upon the Lord, “for He cares for you.”
Pastor Todd Weston