2 Kings 2
-The end of Elijah’s earthly ministry and the beginning of Elisha’s prophetic ministry are narrated in chapter 2 of 2 Kings. The two Major Prophets went together from Gilgal (Circle of Stones, A Wheel) to Bethel (House of God) and then on to Jericho, which was near the Jordan River in the east of Israel. At Bethel and Jericho the sons of the prophets of the LORD came and exclaimed, “Do you know that the LORD will take away your master from over you today?” Elisha is emphatic with his response, which is identical both times, “Yes, I know; be still.” The apprentice desires to go with his mentor all the way each time Elijah beckons for him to stay behind in Bethel and Jericho. They both cross the Jordan and Elijah tells Elisha to ask what he shall do for him before he is taken away. Elisha said, “Please, let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.” Elijah acknowledged this was a hard thing, but he gave him an indication that it would be so if Elisha saw him as he was taken. As they were going along, there appeared a chariot of fire with horses of fire that finally separated the two men. Elijah went up in a whirlwind to Heaven. As Elisha saw it, his request had been fulfilled and he took hold of his clothes and tore them into two pieces. He also took the mantle of Elijah that fell from him and returned and stood by the bank of the Jordan. He struck the waters with the newly acquired mantle exclaiming, “Where is the LORD, the God of Elijah?” The LORD made the waters divide here and there (double portion), and Elisha crossed back over to begin his prophetic ministry (2 Kings 2:1-14). *Application* We see the loyalty of Elisha to his mentor here in this passage. When you have someone you admire and trust in life according to the commands and will of God, stick by them and follow their lead. God gives us those who have gone ahead of us to teach and instruct us in the proper way to go. Loyalty is a great virtue and trait in a person!
-The sons of the prophets who were in Jericho knew that the “spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha” and they came and paid homage to him. They desperately wanted to search for Elijah to see if he had been dropped somewhere by the whirlwind, but Elisha knew better. He relented and let them go look, but the search was futile. Elisha gives them the old “I told you so” at that point. Elisha begins to prophecy over the city at this point saying the situation there was pleasant, but the water and land was unfruitful. He asked for a new jar and put salt in it. As they brought it to him he went out to the spring of water and threw salt in it and said, “Thus says the LORD, ‘I have purified these waters; there shall not be from there death or unfruitfulness any longer.’” The waters were purified according to the prophetic word of Elisha. Then he went toward Bethel, which was an ascent from the low region of Jericho. Along the way 42 lads began to make fun of him and his baldness in mockery. When he saw them and heard their ridicule of God’s prophet, he cursed them in the Name of the LORD. Then two female bears came out of the woods and tore up the lads. How about that? From this experience he went west to Mt. Carmel, where the LORD’s great victory over the prophets of Baal and Asherah through Elijah had been accomplished (1 Kings 18:19-46). From there he returned to the central part of the country to Samaria as he established his ministry (2 Kings 2:15-25). *Application* God’s Spirit rested upon Elisha now in a very powerful, observable way. We also can have a “double portion” of God’s Holy Spirit when we ask for it and seek Him out. God desires to fill us with as much of Him as possible. How much of God do you want? He desires to abide in you through the New Covenant promise of His Holy Spirit and His indwelling as an awesome presence. This will allow you to do things in His Name that are otherwise humanly and naturally impossible. Miracles still exist! It is only our lack of faith that holds the LORD back. Be like Elisha and activate your faith exponentially!
Verse to Memorize: 2 Kings 2:9