A CERTAIN woman, the wife of one of the sons of the prophets, came to Elisha, saying, "My husband is dead; . . . . and the creditor is come to take unto him my two sons to be bondmen." Her husband was in debt when he died, and the man that he owed was going to take the widow's two sons, and make them work for him as servants until the debt was paid.

"And Elisha said unto her, What shall I do for thee? Tell me, what hast thou in the house?  

And she said, Thine handmaid hath not anything in the house, save a pot of oil. Then he said, Go, borrow thee vessels abroad of all thy neighbors, even empty vessels: borrow not a few. 

And when thou art come in, thou shalt shut the door upon thee and upon thy sons, and shalt pour out into all those vessels, and thou shalt set aside that which is full. So she went from him, and shut the door upon her and upon her sons, who brought the vessels to her; and she poured out. And it came to pass, when the vessels were full, that she said unto her son, Bring me yet a vessel. And he said unto her, There is not a vessel more. And the oil stayed. Then she came and told the man of God. And he said, Go, sell the oil, and pay thy debt, and live thou and thy children of the rest."

There was in Shunem a house where Elisha always stopped for food and rest, whenever he passed that way. The woman of the house was a good woman, and always glad to have the prophet come. So she talked with her husband, and they fitted up a room with just such things as they thought he would want. Now these people had no children, but after a time the Lord gave them a son. When this little boy had grown large enough, he went out one day to his father, who was in the field with the reapers. The day must have been very hot; for the little boy said to his father, "My head, my head!"  And when he was carried to the house, he sat on his mother's knees until noon, and then died. "And she went up, and laid him on the bed of the man of God, and shut the door upon him, and went out."

Then she took an ass, and went with all haste to Mount Carmel, where Elisha was, and told him what had happened. This was a long journey, but she did not know what else to do. 

When Elisha heard her story, he gave his cane to Gehazi, and told him to go, and lay it upon the child's face. Then Elisha and the woman followed on, and when they had come to the house, Elisha went up to his room, and shut the door. There he prayed to the Lord, and the child was brought to life.  "And he called Gehazi, and said, Call the Shunammite. So he called her. And when she was come in unto him, he said, Take up thy son. Then she went in, and fell at his feet, and bowed herself to the ground, and took up her son, and went out."