The prophet Elisha had some pretty big shoes to fill. Elijah, his “father in the faith,” had called fire down from heaven and single-handedly slaughtered the prophets of Baal. Soon after, God asked Elijah to anoint a young farmer as his successor. (1 Kings 19:19-21) Coincidentally, Elisha also means “My God is my salvation.” Elijah made a great hand-off to Elisha. The prophet’s young protégé witnessed the Divine power and anointing on the ministry of his mentor in 2 Kings 2. Elijah knew his earthly life was about to end. Elisha would not leave his side. The aging prophet said fare- well to his faithful attendant and performed one last miracle in 2 Kings 2:8-10:
“Elijah took his cloak, rolled it up and struck the water with it. The water divided to the right and to the left, and the two of them crossed over on dry ground. When they had crossed, Elijah said to Elisha, “Tell me, what can I do for you before I am taken from you?” “Let me inherit a double portion of your spirit,” Elisha replied. “You have asked a difficult thing,” Elijah said, “yet if you see me when I am taken from you, it will be yours…” NIV
Young Elisha witnessed his mentor being taken up to heaven in a chariot of fire. The young prophet would not rest until he walked in the same miraculous ministry of Jehovah. Elijah’s “mantle” rested on Elisha in 2 Kings 2:13-15:
“He (Elisha) picked up the cloak that had fallen from Elijah and went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan. Then he took the cloak that had fallen from him and struck the water with it. “Where now is the LORD, the God of Elijah?” he asked. When he struck the water, it divided to the right and to the left, and he crossed over. The company of the prophets from Jericho, who were watching, said, “The spirit of Elijah is resting on Elisha.” NIV
Elisha witnessed God’s power in his mentor’s life, so he was hungry for God’s power and anointing to rest on him as well.
- Moses and Joshua, Elijah and Elisha both experienced the miracle of the parting of the waters. In Matthew 14:28-31, Jesus taught Peter about faith by having him walk on water. What observations can you make about God having His people cross over on dry ground in the Old Testament, and Jesus having Peter walk on the sea in the New Testament? What do we learn about faith from these passages?
- How have you seen God’s power manifested in your life? Write down the occasions when you have seen God an- swer your prayers, or work in the lives of others. Spend some time thanking God for His power and protection.
- Do you have an “Elijah” in your life-someone you know who is walking the Spirit-filled life? What qualities do you see in them? Have you spent time learning from them, experiencing God with them? If you do not have an “Elijah” in your life, ask God to send you someone who can inspire and encourage you.