THE GEHAZI SYNDROME

In 2 Kings 5, Naaman, a very prominent army commander approached Prophet Elisha for healing of his leprosy. After his quest was successful, he offered the Prophet some gifts as a thank-you offer. However, the Prophet rejected them.

The Prophet had a servant, more like a mentee or subordinate called Gehazi. Gehazi was perhaps, dismayed at his boss’ decision not to take the precious gifts. Still coveting those items, Gehazi bolted to meet Naaman while on his way back home.

He, instead of requesting the items for himself, used his boss, superior, and the Prophet’s name to receive the items. He claimed the Prophets had received guests and that the gifts would now come in handy so he needs them back. Elisha had given no such instruction. Naaman gladly gave Gahazi these items. Because Gehazi claimed these items for himself, he detoured and hid them before going back to his mentor, the Prophet.

However, the Prophet, already knowing what had happened asked Gehazi where he had been. He lied about not having gone anywhere. The Prophet now exposed his deeds and cursed him for his disloyal behaviour. He cursed him with the disease Naaman suffered for the rest of his life.

People who have Gehazi syndrome use their superior’ name (influence, respect, loyalty, or authority) to advance their personal, selfish and parochial interests. They use people who respect their superiors or bosses, and lie to them about what their boss wants, has requested or expects, knowing very well that the boss or superior has given no such instruction. This is to advance their own personal interests at the expense of their superiors’ name (influence, respect, loyalty, or authority).

If Gehazi suffered from such a dishonest act, it means God is not pleased with such an act, therefore, no man shall be exempted from its consequential punishment. Gehazi syndrome is also a clear example of disloyalty – lying over your superior for your own gains.

If you use a superior’s name to steal money or any material possession, know that a thief won’t go unpunished according to Zacharia 5:4a; “The Lord Almighty declares, ‘I will send it out, and it will enter the house of the thief…”.

May the Lord mend our nets!

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