2 Kings 2:1-25 — Elisha Takes Over from Elijah - 2 Kings 2:1-25 records the story of how the anointing was passed from Elijah to Elisha.
2 Kings 2:1-18 — The Story of Elijah's Ascent to Heaven (The Mantle) - The story of the rapture of Elijah and the transfer of his mantle to Elisha is a type and shadow of how the mantle, or anointing for a particular office, is transferred from one person to another. Todd Bentley discusses this issue in his book Journey Into the Miraculous. He says:
"God said to me once, ‘I can give you any anointing that I have ever given anyone else if you can do what they did to get it.' The anointing will cost you everything. Someone once shared the following vision with me: He said a man looked across a big open plain - rolled up mantles lay all over the ground. (A mantle is the anointing, the authority, the power and ministry that were on someone else's life.) As the vision continued, he said, ‘I saw the mantle of Smith Wigglesworth, Kathryn Kuhlman and Aimee Semple McPherson. I saw the mantle of Elisha, of Elisha, and all the greats that had gone on before us. Then the Holy Spirit spoke to me and said, ‘Take any mantle you want. What do you want? Pick it up, take it; any one of them.'
"‘Oh, I want Elijah's! Oh! I want to be like Smith Wigglesworth and have great faith. The mantle of John G. Lake! Oh! My! The mantle of Elisha, think of that anointing! I could pick Kathryn Kuhlman's mantle and move in great miracles…or Martin Luther's and be a part of a great reformation.' Then suddenly he saw a bright glow come up from the ground. As he looked down he saw another mantle, which spoke to him: ‘Enoch walked with God so intimately that he was not.' After seeing the life and the anointing of Enoch, he made his decision. ‘Before all the power mantles, I'd rather have the presence of the Lord.' Then he picked up Enoch's mantle." 54]
54] Todd Bentley, Journey Into the Miraculous (Victoria, BC, Canada: Hemlock Printers, Ltd, 2003), 13-4.
We know from Scripture that John the Baptist walked in the mantle, or anointing, of Elijah ( Luke 1:17).
Luke 1:17, "And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord."
2 Kings 2:9 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.
2 Kings 2:9 — "let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me" - Comments- Note that a double portion was the rightful inheritance of the firstborn. Since Elijah did not have a Song of Solomon, Elisha felt compelled to ask for this blessing.
2 Kings 2:10 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.
2 Kings 2:9-10 — Comments- Elisha's Double Anointing - After Elijah departed and Elisha received a double portion, the Scriptures record almost twice as many miracles performed by Elisha than by Elijah. 55] Yet, Elisha did not seem to know the Lord as intimately as Elijah nor the inner faith to deliver himself from sickness. Song of Solomon, faith and the anointing are two different things, but complimentary.
55] Kenneth Hagin, Understanding the Anointing (Tulsa, Oklahoma: Faith Library Publications, c 1983, 1994), 98.
A. Miracles of Elijah
1. Heavens shut up- 1 Kings 17:1
2. Elijah and widow of Zarephath and son fed from barrel until it rained again- 2 Kings 17:14
3. Widow's son raised from the dead- 2 Kings 17:20-23
4. Fire from heaven consumes sacrifice- 2 Kings 18:37-37
5. Ran 25 miles before Ahab's chariot-
6. Five from heaven consumes 50 men- 2 Kings 1:10
7. Five men from men consumes 50 men- 2 Kings 1:12
8. Jordan divided- 2 Kings 2:8
9. Elijah taken up in fiery chariot- 2 Kings 2:11
10. Jezebel dies as Elijah prophesied- 1 Kings 21:12-13, 2 Kings 9:36
B. Miracles of Elisha
1. Jordan divided- 2 Kings 2:14
2. Healing of waters- 2 Kings 2:19-22
3. Cursing and bear consumes children- 2 Kings 2:23-24
4. Country filled with water- 2 Kings 3:17-20
5. Vessels filled with oil- 2 Kings 4:3-6
6. Shunammite has child- 2 Kings 4:13-17
7. Shunammite's son raised form dead- 2 Kings 4:34-36
8. Healing pot of death- 2 Kings 4:38-41
9. 20 loaves feeds 100 men- 2 Kings 4:42-44
10. Healing of Naaman the leper- 2 Kings 5:14
11. Axe head swims- 2 Kings 6:1-7
12. Elisha often tells king of Israel where Syrians camp- 2 Kings 6:8-12
13. Syrians smote with blindness- 2 Kings 6:18
14. Syrian army flees for fight- 2 Kings 7:1-7
15. Word of future events revealed to Elisha- 2 Kings 8:12-13
16. Elisha has Jehu anointed as new king- 2 Kings 9:1-10
17. Man raised form dead after touching Elisha's bones- 2 Kings 13:21.
The receiving of a double portion upon Elisha may be compared to Jesus giving the Church the Holy Spirit to do greater works than even Himself ( John 14:12).
John 14:12, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father."
2 Kings 2:11 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.
2 Kings 2:11 — Comments- The story of Elijah's translation in Heaven is type of Jesus' ascension into heaven. We receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit as a type of double portion of the Spirit of God.
2 Kings 2:11 — Comments- Irenaeus (A.D 130 to 200) tells us that the translations of Enoch and Elijah were in anticipation of the coming rapture of the saints spoken of in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18.
"For Enoch, when he pleased God, was translated in the same body in which he did please Him, thus pointing out by anticipation the translation of the just. Elijah, too, was caught up [when he was yet] in the substance of the [natural] form; thus exhibiting in prophecy the assumption of those who are spiritual, and that nothing stood in the way of their body being translated and caught up. For by means of the very same hands through which they were moulded at the beginning, did they receive this translation and assumption." (Against Heresies 551) 56]
56] Irenaeus, Against Heresies, in The Apostolic Fathers with Justin Martyr and Irenaeus, in The Ante-Nicene Fathers, vol 1, eds. Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A.Cleveland Cox (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1913), 530-531.
2 Kings 2:12 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.
2 Kings 2:12 — "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" - Comments- It is very likely that Elisha saw into the spirit realm, and beheld the heavenly chariots and horses with their riders. This was the army of the Lord coming to escort Elijah to heaven. He will see them again later in his ministry when the king of Syria and his army surround the city where he was staying. Elisha's eyes were opened again and he saw the army of the Lord surrounding them, ready to smite the Syrian army ( 2 Kings 6:8-23).
2 Kings 6:17, "And Elisha prayed, and said, LORD, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha."
2 Kings 2:12 — "he took hold of his own clothes, and rent them in two pieces" - Comments- This was a sign of mourning at the loss of a spiritual giant.
2 Kings 2:16 And they said unto him, Behold now, there be with thy servants fifty strong men; let them go, we pray thee, and seek thy master: lest peradventure the Spirit of the LORD hath taken him up, and cast him upon some mountain, or into some valley. And he said, Ye shall not send.
2 Kings 2:16 — Comments- We have a New Testament account of God translating Philip the evangelist in bodily form from one place to another ( Acts 8:39-40). The fact that the sons of the prophets believed God may have done the same to Elijah suggests that this event had been witnessed by them or others in the past.
Acts 8:39-40, "And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philippians, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing. But Philip was found at Azotus: and passing through he preached in all the cities, till he came to Caesarea."
2 Kings 2:20-21 — Comments - The Salt in the Offering- Salt is added to the offerings in the Mosaic Law. We are the salt of the earth.
2 Kings 2:23 And he went up from thence unto Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head.
2 Kings 2:23 — "Go up" - Comments- This is a likely reference to Elijah"s translation, and a mockery of the calling and the mantel representing this anointing that Elisha has now received from him.
2 Kings 2:24 — Comments- How careful we must walk as stewards of God's blessings and as a temple of God's Spirit.
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Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on 2 Kings 2". Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/
the Third Sunday after Epiphany