While countless people have come in and gone out of my life that I’ve loved, those who have had a “great” spiritual impact on my life have been fewer than those who have had a great personal impact on my life. Both are important and I don’t want to diminish the latter, but of those who have had a spiritual impact I believe they’ll have rewards in Heaven. 1 Peter 5:2-4 says “Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being examples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.” It is my prayer that I will have that impact on people in my life; not that I’m anybody, but that the presence of God in my life will be evident to the point that someone wants what I have and for God’s glory alone.
In 2nd Kings Chapter 2 we find the story of two such men, Elijah and Elisha, and this morning as I read their story I caught a glimpse of that road to Glory for which every saint of God should strive for.
Vs. 9-15 ~
Evidence of the Spirit at Work in our Life
Vs. 9 ~ And it came to pass, when they were gone over, that Elijah said unto Elisha, Ask what I shall do for thee, before I be taken away from thee. And Elisha said, I pray thee, let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me.
Before Elijah left, Elisha had seen the Spirit of the Lord at work in his life. It will do little good if our legacy for the Lord is the last five minutes of our life. Our friends and family need to see the lasting affect over time. They need to see God in the good days and the bad. Elisha had seen that, he wanted that! He’d seen Elijah:
1. Stop the Rain (1 Kings 17:1)
2. Multiply the Oil (1 Kings 17:2)
3. Raise the Dead (1 Kings 17:22, 23)
4. Bring Fire from heaven on the soaked altar (1 Kings 18:38)
5. Bring on the rain (1 Kings 18:45)
6. Bring fire down on 51 soldiers. (2 Kings 1:10)
7. Bring fire down on the second 51 soldiers (2 Kings 1:12) and
8. Part the river Jordan. (2 Kings 2:8)
Our Evangelism Needs to Continue
Vss. 10-13 ~ And he said, Thou hast asked a hard thing: nevertheless, if thou see me when I am taken from thee, it shall be so unto thee; but if not, it shall not be so. And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. And Elisha saw it, and he cried, My father, my father, the chariot of Israel, and the horsemen thereof. And he saw him no more: and he took hold of his own clothes, and rent them in two pieces. He took up also the mantle of Elijah that fell from him, and went back, and stood by the bank of Jordan;
When Elijah had gone, Elisha mourned but went back and stood at the bank of Jordan where he and Elijah had stood before. When we’re gone there should be someone standing in the gap that we’ve left; we should be leading leaders, training those we love to evangelize those they love. If Jesus tarries I want the next generation to evangelize the next generation and the only way that will happen is if we have them ready before we leave.
Evolving takes humility
Vss. 14-15 ~ And he took the mantle of Elijah that fell from him, and smote the waters, and said, Where is the Lord God of Elijah? and when he also had smitten the waters, they parted hither and thither: and Elisha went over. And when the sons of the prophets which were to view at Jericho saw him, they said, The spirit of Elijah doth rest on Elisha. And they came to meet him, and bowed themselves to the ground before him.
After Elijah left, Elisha was there, and when Elisha was gone those who had been watching seen Elisha’s miracles too! Elisha had asked for a double portion of the Spirit that was upon Elijah. Elisha’s miracles were as follows:
- Jordan River divided (2:14)
- Waters at the spring of Jericho healed (2:21)
- Bears from the woods, destroying the mockers (2:24)
- Water for Kings (3:20)
- Oil for the widow (4:1-4
- Gift of the son (4:16,17)
- Raising the child from the dead (4:35)
- Healing of the potage (4:41)
- Bread multiplied (4:43)
- Naaman healed (5:10)
- Gehazi smitten (5:27)
- Caused the iron to swim (6:6)
- Sight to the blind (6:17)
- Smiting blindness to these men (6:18)
- Restoring sight to these men (6:20)
- Miracle after his death, man comes to life by touching Elisha’s bones (13:21)
Sixteen!!! The double portion.
It is said that those who watched were the sons of the prophets having been formally trained, while Elisha was taken from the plough. When they perceived that God was on Elisha (as He was Elijah) they readily submitted to him as their father in the faith. They weren’t worried about his resume. Evolving (changing into) men and women of God takes humility. A willingness to have a servant’s heart to receive the manifold blessings of God.
If we want to see God move we’ve got watch for opportunities as Elisha watched Elijah; pray specifically as Elisha asked for the double portion; and when it’s our turn we need to stand accordingly.