Dec 1

The life of Elisha pt5

This morning we will be in II Kings 6

 

When you first read this ch. it will seem as though it’s a very simple story

and not really much you can take away from it

 

But as I’ve tried to show you over the years, you got to dig a bit deeper

 
You probably find it amazing as I do, when you’ve read something in the bible

 

And you think you got it, and then you go back and re read it something new jumps out again

 
I’ve come to believe that you and I cannot exhaust the depth of Gods word
There are 2 main differences between Elijah’s ministry and Elisha’s

 

Elijah’s ministry was very much out in the public

 
Everything he did was usually seen by a group or crowd of people

 

Miracles were done before Kings, and armies

 

 

He brought down fire from heaven, drought to a nation
and openly brought judgment on people in power

 
He never backed away from publicly showing the power of God
But Elisha’s ministry was very much private

 

He did things without anyone watching, he would minister to individuals and not the crowds

 

Just as we saw with Naaman and the woman with the oil

 

Elijah would have probably took Naaman down to the river with a crowd of people to watch and be a witness

 
But Elisha just tells him to go to the river privately,

 

he was a quiet man, He just didn’t have a need to be out front

 
But Elijah was more loud, and he wanted to be heard
In the same way pastors are like Elijah and Elisha

 

There’s two different kinds and God has a purpose for both

 
There are pastors who love being in the public, having a radio, or a TV spot

 

A huge church and nothing less would satisfy them

 

 

And then there’s the ones who don’t want to be in the limelight

 

They are satisfied with a small church, a struggling ministry

 

and they enjoy working with just a single individual at a time

II Kings 6:1

And the sons of the prophets said unto Elisha behold now the place where we will dwell with thee is too strait (small) for us

 

Sons of the prophets = students

 
Apparently, Elisha was a teacher in a school and the students come to Elisha
And they say, the place where we’re all living, is too small

 
Colleges are nothing new, they’ve been around for centuries

 

And at this college Elisha was a professor and he taught the law and other topics pertaining to being a priest

 

I think the popularity of Elisha was bringing in more students and they needed more living space
Vs2
Let us go we pray thee unto Jordan and take thence every man a beam and let us make a place there, where we may dwell and he answered go ye

 

Elisha tells them go and get some wood and get building

 

I could spend a lot of time right here talking about how God loves building programs

 

A church has to be progressing forward,

 
but let’s make a distinction here

 

Many pastors think that if their not building something physical
then they’re not successful
In their eyes building something bigger means God is blessing

 

But the reality is Gods building programs is seldom physical, it’s spiritual

 

Gods not into building buildings, he’s into building lives

 

Seeing people come to know him as Savior,

 

learning God Word, and growing in their spiritual lives
that’s a building program that Gods interested in

 

 

I’ve had people leave our church and say their not growing
But those same people invested very little time in Gods church
Very little time in bible study and being with other believers

 

They would get mad at me if I didn’t come visit them
but they didn’t have a problem not visiting me on Sunday’s

 
The reality is, they were never apart of Gods building program to start with
In order to grow you’ve got to be involved with building

 

Vs3

And one said be content I pray thee and go with thy servants and he answered I will go

 

This shows us why I think Elisha was popular
They wanted him to go with them
How many times do young people want an old guy hanging out with them? Not very much

 

But he agrees to go with them, and as their chopping down some trees something happens

 
Vs 4-5

So he went with them and when they came to Jordan they cut down wood

But as one was felling a beam the axe head fell into the water, and he cried and said, alas master for it was borrowed

 

As their working, one of the guys axe head falls off and goes into the water

 
We might think so what, go get another one

 

But back then, metal of any kind was hard to get, and this young guy had borrowed it
So to him it was a big deal

 
How many of you have ever lost something, that would be insignificant to anyone else but you?

 

 

Well maybe he was just careless, no, back then an axe wasn’t made like today’s

 

The head was usually held on by a piece of leather or rope

 
You wouldn’t want to be anywhere near him when he swung it,
it might fall off and hit you in the head

 

There’s at least two things that I believe God wants to show us through this

 

First of all, we tend to pray about the big things in our lives and forget about the small things

 
Small things that won’t matter at all to someone else, but they do to you.
And they matter to God

 
It’s not the big things that distract us from serving the Lord

 

It’s often the little things,

 

that build and build over time that pulls us away from serving the Lord
The reasons why we left our last two churches, wasn’t because anything major took place
It was little things, that built up over time

 
Why do most people leave a job?
It’s usually over many frustrations over time that you have your fill

 

You do your job the best you can, and people will accuse you of things that you have nothing to do with

 
It’s always amazed me how someone in the congregation can have a personal, family, or financial problem

 

And somehow it’s turned around to be the pastors or the churches fault
You can be in a factory setting, and through a series of problems with a product, somehow your singled out as the cause

 
Why is that?

 

It’s Because, we live in a society that refuses to take personal responsibility

 
In ferguson mo The proof is overwhelming that Michael Brown was guilty of his crime
He attacked the cop

 

But his parents would rather let people burn down a city than admit their son was in a criminal act
Even his step father shouted to burn down the city, he is guilty of inciting violence
The truth doesn’t matter anymore in our society

 

There’s still protests going on even though they know the truth

 
But they use it as an excuse to justify hating white people, stealing and burning

 
Parents are nortorious for accusing the school, the church or someone else for their problems

 

They seldom will take responsibility for their parenting just as we see with the parents of Michael Brown

 
The 2nd thing we see here is how God is testing this young mans faith
How does God test our faith?

 

It’s usually through the small things not the big things

 

Why would God test us on something big, if he knows we can’t even be faithful through something small?

 
This guy could have said oh well, that axe head is gone and went on about his business

 

But it was important to him to return what he had borrowed

 
So instead of trying to figure how to get it on his own

 

He goes to Elisha and tells him what happened

Vs6

And the man of God said where fell it? And he showed him the place and he cut down a stick and cast it in thither and the iron did swim

 
Elisha takes a stick and throws it into the water and the axe head
Defies all laws of nature and pops out of the water like a cork

 
This young man learned right there, if you have a problem no matter what it is, take it to the Lord

 
And that’s the lesson for you and me

 

So often we have a problem and we stew about it, complain to others about it
Try to fix it ourselves but we don’t take it to the Lord

God wants to increase our faith and that happens when we go to him for everything

 
When we continually go to the Lord on the little things
When something big does happen, we can handle it,

 

because over the years our faith was increased over the small things

 
There’s something else here we see too, the gospel

 

The axe head came off the wood and was buried and then it was resurrected by the power of God

 
Christ is the second person of the God head
He hung on a cross, was taken off that cross, and was buried
And by the power of God, he was resurrected to life again

 
Gods interested in everything in our lives, but we have to let him in
He never moves, we do, and we have to come to him

 
Elisha is the figure of Christ, and this young man came to him for help in a time of trouble

 

Where do you go when a problem arises?
Do you take it to the Lord?
We should, whatever it is, take it to the Lord

 

 

 

Nov 28

The life of Elisha pt 4

As we continue in our study of Elisha we come to ch 5 of II Kings
This is probably one of the most interesting chapters about the life of Elisha
It reveals some things about him personally

 
For one thing, we know how rugged Elijah was and Elisha was just as rugged as Elijah

 
Ruggedness is an old time expression that described how tough a man was
How much pain or suffering a man had to face and how much he could endure
We sometimes think, we don’t see many men like that today

Especially if a man gets a cold
But the fact is, we have many rugged individuals, their just ignored by our society

 
how many young men have been sent into battle over the past many years

 

And they have done many, many amazing feats?

 
There’s so many who have saved lives and given their lives for fellow soldiers and for our country

 
But our country neglects the sacrifices that these men and women have given

 

Instead, being some effeminate, girly man is celebrated

and Some gay guy who doesn’t get his way
is given more press than a man who was shot several times saving his team

 
We have had many brave and rugged individuals who suffered and died for our nation, and there’s little fanfare

 

 

Something else we need to learn from Elisha and the prophets of old was

 

They were so brave and so committed to God that they never backed down from standing on the truth and saying it

 
Many of Today’s pastors have stepped away from the plate on this one

 

last weekend in washingtons national cathedral
They held the first Christian and Muslim prayer service

 

to show our common heritage and to show we can worship together
(No Jews were invited by the way)

 

 

We have no common heritage, we do not serve the same God

 

One commentator said not to worry there wasn’t one Christian among them

 

Franklin Graham said “It’s sad to see a church open its doors to the worship of anything other than the One True God of the Bible who sent His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to earth to save us from our sins,”. “Jesus was clear when He said, ‘I am the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me’ (John 14:6).”

We have a nation that is bowing down to Muslims in our country
In an effort to make peace

 

And at the same time our country fights against Muslim aggression

 

Anyone looking at our nation from the outside would say we are one confused country

 

 

We don’t seem to know if we are at war or at peace

 

Christians, especially pastors are not to make agreements or appease anyone when it comes to Gods Word

 
We are to stand and speak the truth just as the prophets and the Apostles did

We are not to make alliances with Satans workers

 
In Maryland, a school board voted unanimously to remove all references to Christianity and Judaism

 

Such as Christmas, Easter, Hanukkah and every other reference even on their calendars
The truth about Thanksgiving cannot be taught and it’s now just a holiday

 
Due to pressure from Muslims who were offended,

 

this country was founded and our traditions are based on Christianity

 

Not Islam, but apparently we are suppose to change our heritage
Another college put in foot washing stations for Muslims
Other schools have set aside places and times for Muslim students to pray

 
On our college campuses, there is a movement by our young people of having sympathy toward terrorist groups

 

And a growing hatred toward Israel

 

 

Dr. Bob Aries did a documentary to see the reaction of students to him flying the ISIS flag and then the Israeli flag

 
While he flew the ISIS flag he got no rebuttals only support

 

But when he flew the Israeli flag, he got cursed at, shouted at and argued with

 

He said this was a real eye opener of where our future is going

 

 

There is separation of church and state, the state doesn’t want anything to do with the church

 

But the state is interested in having a relationship between them and Islam

 
while they make their alliances

 
They ignore, the fact, that we have lost thousands of lives due to Muslim attacks

But then on the other hand, something that we have to realize is

 

From the presidency all the way down to school boards, there are secret Muslims who are in power

 
They don’t dress, or talk like a Muslim, and it’s in order to infiltrate our system

 

 

We live in the only country due to political correctness from communities such as Muslim and Mexicans

 

Where you can’t profile an individual, You can’t look into their background

 
We are the only country that has an open border policy

where you can come here and get a license, a car, a job, go into business and get into a position of power

 
We are the only country where you can break the law and then
Have our king reward you with citizenship,

 
we use to be a country of laws but now even our king is lawless

 

 

Why are we surprised when a school wants the children to dress in Muslim attire and study the 5 pillars of Islam?

 
It shouldn’t surprise us at all that millions of dollars of social security retirement benefits

are being sent to Mexico and other countries to individuals who worked in the US illegally

 

But somehow managed to retire with our social security that we paid in

 

 

Without question, this is a country of fools, and people know it
and they come here to take advantage of our foolishness

 
In Elisha’s time, they weren’t so foolish, they knew without question who their enemies were

 

And they were more than willing to fight for their survival
They had men like Naaman who led armies even when his own health was at risk
This man was rugged but he was also very ill

 

II Kgs 5:1

 

Although this man was a pagan, the bible describes him as a man who was both a great and honorable man

 

The Lord had used him to deliver Syria from its enemies

 
God has used the unsaved at different times for his purposes

 

He used men like Pharoah, Nebuchadnezzar, Cyrus, and Alexander the Great
and here he used Naaman
There’s a lot of people today, who are kind, wonderful and honorable

 

But their not saved, their sinners on their way to hell and when they get there, it will be a shock to them

 
To never be involved with evil, and then to find yourself standing shoulder to shoulder with evil

 

I cannot even imagine what that will be like for them

 

 

I heard it said if we really understood 1/8 of what hell really is

 

We would cry out for even the worse of all sinners to come to Christ

Naaman was a great man, and As much as God used him, he was a leper
In Israel lepers weren’t allowed by the people, they were set aside in colonies away from everyone

 
But that wasn’t so in pagan nations, Mostly because they didn’t understand the spread of disease

 

That’s how diseases like Ebola and aids spread so quickly they don’t understand how it spreads

 

 

Leprosy in scripture is always a type of sin

 

It was incurable by human means,
the only way it could be cured was by a miracle from God
In – same way, sin is incurable by human means and can only be cured by God
Vs2
As Naaman conquered their enemies, they of course took people for slaves

 

And this one particular Jewish girl saw that Naaman had leprosy
And she tells them if you let my prophet Elisha come here, he can heal you

 
Now that’s one girl who had confidence and faith in the power of God

 

To make a long story short
Naaman agrees and he goes to the home of Elisha
The first step we have to take to get healed is we have to go to the doctor

 

Elisha tells him if he wants to be healed he had to go dip himself in the filthiest River in the entire country the Jordan

 
There were clean rivers but Elisha says no, go to the filthy one

 
At first Naaman refuses,
is the God of Elisha a hateful God who wanted to embarrass him and send him to such a filthy River?

 
We’ve all been told that God is love, that’s all he is, and it’s being preached everywhere

 

But the truth is, God is also a God of hate, I’m goin off the deep end I know

 

It tells us in Prov. 6. That’s there’s 7 things God hates

 

A lying tongue, pride, the shedding of innocent blood are the first things on his list

 

 

You can’t have love without hate

 

You may love a dog, but you’ll hate the one that attacks your young child

 

 

God hates sin, he can’t be in its presence, that’s why he sent his son to pay for its penalty

God hates pride, it’s Satans original sin that brought the fall of man

 

And that’s exactly why Elisha told Naaman where he had to go to be clean

 
Naaman was a great and honorable man, but he was also a proud man
In order to be clean he had to humble himself

 
we are also proud people, and in order to be saved
We have to humble ourselves and admit that we are sinners

 

and the only way to be saved Is to humble ourselves, our pride before the Lord

who is the only one who can cure my sin
That’s why so many walk away from Christ

 

The very thought that they are proud and have to be humbled to be saved
Repulses them

 

 

We had a guy in church who said he won’t sing that one verse that says
“as such a worm as I”. In the hymn “at the cross”

 
I thought how can you be saved if you can’t humble yourself before God?
When you get right down to it, why is our country in such a mess?

 

Because we are a proud nation, that refuses to humble itself before God

 

They believe they can fix everything in their own power

 
But only the power of God can heal, restore and save a nation
But he won’t do anything, until we humble ourselves and repent of our pride

 

Naaman does just that, he humbles himself, Dips in the Jordan
And is cleansed

Nov 16

The life of Elisha pt 3

Elisha is one of only a few OT prophets who really made an impact on biblical history
His whole goal in life was to be pleasing to God

 
I read a story this week in the blaze on the wrong direction of our country

 

& on bottom were some comments of why this country keeps doing
and getting away with the things they do

 
And many said it Is because Christians are not dedicated enough to God to stop this country from the direction it’s going

 
What they said in essence is its – Christians fault
This caused me to think, is it really our mission to stop a country from going in a wrong direction?

 

We’re coming up to Christmas and that same controversy begins again about businesses that don’t say merry Christmas

 
Why should someone who perhaps isn’t saved or believe in the birth of Christ say it?

 

Same is true about people screaming about no prayer in school is damaging our country

 

I personally don’t want a hedonistic public setting saying prayers

 
If your going to be a part of public education you should know the ungodly crowd your going into

If Christians choose to be a part of it, deal with it
Where I have a problem is if someone wants to say merry Christmas or say a prayer
The business or school shouldn’t have a right to stop it

 

That’s what a free society is all about, that’s free speech

 

 

A Christians mission is to be faithful, dedicated and a servant of God

 

We’re not here to change our culture, we’re here to change hearts
And the more hearts that are changed, the more your culture changes

 
And this is where the real problem is

Christians continue to try to change their culture through politics
Or screaming or protesting everything they disagree with

 
But they spend little time trying to change someone’s heart

 

The world is going to follow their father, and we can’t stop that
we are to be in the world, but we don’t have to be a part of it

 
Elisha was that kind of man, he wasn’t trying to force his beliefs on anyone
All he was going to do was show them the power of God through his life

 

Last week we left off speaking about how Elisha had performed a miracle

 

You couldn’t drink the water in the land it was bitter

 

Elisha turns the water from bitter to being sweet, and drinkable

 

 

I told you that Elisha is a type of Christ

 

And where have we heard a similar story?

 
Elisha turns bitter water sweet, but Jesus turns water into even sweeter wine

 

As great as the prophets were of the OT, Jesus is always greater
Turn this morning to II Kngs 4. In this ch. there are 5 miracles of Elisha
Vs1
Elisha apparently knew her husband, but he had died

 
Her husband was the household provider, but when he died, she had no way of paying the bills

 
In our country, both men and women work, many women don’t want to be dependent on a man
And there’s some women who make more than a man

 
But this woman didn’t work, as very few did back in those days,

they were dependent on their husbands
And a man who they owed money to, came to collect

 

 

Back in those days they had some strange customs when it came to debt

 

In this case, since she couldn’t pay, the collector seized her children as collateral

 

 

I’ve stood behind some moms in the grocery stores where I was convinced

 

If that was a practice today, she would have gladly gave her kids instead of cash

 
But the collector here would take her property,
if she didn’t own any property, he would take her children as bond

 
What he would then do, is put the kids to work until the debt is paid,
if mama came up with the cash she would get them back

 

Worst case scenario he would sell them as slaves

 

 

This Godly woman was in trouble

 

Elisha knew that he had a responsibility to take care of this woman

 

Scripture told him to care for the widows and their children
We are commanded in the NT to also care for the widows and her children

 

Yrs ago the church had a big role in doing just that

 

But as the state got more involved, the church got set aside

 
And now in some places if you feed the poor, you can face going to jail as two pastors found out in Florida

 

And a 90 yr old man who has fed the homeless for 24 yrs was put in handcuffs and led away in ft lauderdale

 

I’ve always been one who believes we as a church should help our widows who are members in our church first
We have a responsibility to our own first
But we are very, very limited due to finances of how much we can do for someone

 
But Elisha has the greatest resource, he has the Lord
Vs2
He asks her, what do you have that you can sell?
She tells him nothing but a pot of oil

 
This was probably olive oil since shell oil wasn’t around yet

 

Olive oil wasn’t cheap and was used for cooking, heating, lights and medicine
It had a lot of uses, so if you had a good amount, you could make some money
Vs3-7
Elisha turned one pot into a gusher of oil

 

Not only did she pay her debt, but I have a feeling she had enough money to last her quite awhile

 

Elisha helped this woman, she got her children back

 

 

Elisha leaves there and goes to the next town in Shunem

 

Apparently there was a couple there that he knew and every time he came in town they fed him

 
Vs 8-10

Yrs ago many Christian homes and in many churches

 

They built little rooms to house visiting, pastors, missionaries and evangelist

 

These were called The prophets chamber

 
And they took this idea from this story right here

 

 
One day as Elisha was enjoying his comfortable settings

 

He got thinking how he could repay this couple for all of their kindness
Vs. 11-14
Elisha asks their servant Gehazi what could be done for this couple

 

And he tells them, they don’t have a son

 

A son was important, he would carry on their name, care for his elderly parents and in many cases continue the family business

 

Vs. 15-16
Elisha calls the Shunamite woman in and tells her she is going to have a son

 

And of course she can’t believe it, and says don’t mess with me

 

 

Remember an Angel once told a young lady named Mary that she would conceive
And she said the same thing, don’t mess with me!

 
But he was serious and lo and behold, she conceives and has a son

Yrs later however her son gets ill and dies in verses 17-31

 

But look at vs 32-37
Elisha uses the same tactic that Elijah did back in I Kings where he laid on the dead body and raised him back to life

 

The prophets always touched the person to heal them

 

 

But Jesus being the superior prophet raised people from the dead and never touched them
When Jesus comes to take us home to heaven, he will never touch us
He won’t reach out and take us by our hand or anything

 

He is going to just say come on up and we’ll be with him

 

 

The old prophets were always a picture of Christ

 

Elisha did many of the same miracles that Jesus did when he was on this earth

 
In 2 kings 4: 43-44. He fed a hundred men with one pot of meal
Jesus fed 5000 with a few fish and loaves

And then 10,000 later on
There is much we can learn about Christ as we study the life of Elisha

 
But what we are starting to see is

 

Elisha didn’t run around yelling about the horrible direction that his country was going

 
He didn’t complain about how unfairly his people were being treated

 
He just simply asked people, what can God do for you?

 

 

Maybe that’s what today’s Christian ought to start doing
Instead of complaining about our country

 

Instead of screaming about all the injustices against Christians

 
Just ask someone
what can God do for you?

 
See where it goes

 

I’m going to try it when the Lord gives me an opportunity

 

Elisha had a mission, and was determined to fulfill it
And I think, today’s Christian has forgotten what ours is
Or perhaps we have just refused to fulfill it,
It’s much easier to whine, scream, and protest than to give out the gospel
We need to examine our hearts and get back to our mission of seeing hearts changed

Nov 10

Life of Elisha pt 2

We left off last wk with Elisha striking the Jordan River and crossing over

 

When he asked where is the God of Elijah and then struck the water of the Jordan

 
He was asking for confirmation that he was given a double portion of Elijah’s spirit

 

And the river split in two

 
This was his first miracle, and confirmation that God had indeed approved him of being Elijah’s replacement

 
Everyone who goes into ministry usually wants some kind of confirmation that God has approved them for the ministry

When we Got our first call to our church up north way back in 1992

 

We prayed and told the Lord that if he wanted us to go and pastor that church
The house that we were buying had to be sold

 
The problem was, at that time, houses weren’t selling at all
No one could get rid of theirs and they were sitting for months on the market

 
We listed it, and with-in a week, it was sold, that was confirmation

 

But during that week I got another phone call from a company I had previously worked for in Kansas
And they offered me a job in California and financially anyone would be a fool to turn it down

 

But the Lord had sold our house as we had asked and we decided it was probably Satan who didn’t want us to pastor

 

 

Elisha wanted confirmation and God granted it to him

 

As he walked over to the other side he was met by other men who saw that he was their new prophet

 
But I don’t think they were ready to accept him, as they wanted to go and search for Elijah

 

Elisha tells them not to go, but if you do go, you won’t find him
He knew they wouldn’t find him because he watched him taken up to heaven by chariots of Fire pulled by horses of fire

 

 

But as I told you last week, people are people

 

II Kings 2: 16-18
The people weren’t sure if Elijah was really taken to heaven or if God just put him somewhere else

 
Elisha is telling them that he is being truthful, he went to heaven, don’t question him

 
As I told you last week, it’s going to be a bumpy road for Elisha

they do question him, so Elisha says go ahead and look, but you won’t find him

 

And they go and search for 3 days and come up empty

 

And Elisha says I told you not to go,
it’s like telling your kids not to do something, but they do it anyways, (got to learn – hard way)

 
I know how frustrating it is, when you tell people this is what God says
And they say, we don’t believe you

 

 

There has to be a degree of trust between a pastor and his congregation, That trust of course has to be earned
But when it’s earned, the congregation should be able to rest in what he’s saying and learn from him
Fact is your spiritual growth will be hindered if u can’t trust your pastor

 
Although these men come back empty, they still want to argue
the men want to be sure that Elisha is indeed the prophet of God
So they put him to the test

 

2kings 2:19-22
these waters that Elisha made drinkable which is his 2nd miracle

Is in the valley by Jericho, and can still be drank straight from the ground today
This was proof positive that Elisha was Gods man

 

But this next part, has many people baffled, because when you read it

 

It looks as though God condoned the killing of little children

 
And the liberals love to jump on anything that makes it look like God is a cruel and unjust God

 

Vs-23-24

 

As Elisha leaves Jericho and is on his way to Bethel

 

It says a group of young children came out to meet him and began to mock him
We have to remember back then, although they didn’t have our modern way of sending information
such as a phone or emails

 
Any news that was worthy to report, spread like wildfire on Israels highway of gossip

 
The news had already spread of what took place with Elijah
But not everyone believed what they heard

 
I’m the same way, there’s some people I can trust them 100% what they tell me is true

 

Others I put a teaspoon of salt with what they say
And then there’s others I put an entire sea of salt with what they say

 

Because you know everything that comes out of their mouth is a lie

 
First of all we need to recognize that when we come into this world
Our human minds are more or less neutral on every subject
except one

 

We have an innate streak of rebellion against God built right in us from birth because of our sin nature

 

Man has an inborn bias against God and we are skeptical about the bible
Man will believe about anything from anybody except God

 

How many times do people say it has to be proven scientifically

 
No one will believe anything until someone puts on a white coat then they’ll buy it

 

Although Elisha was Elijah’s successor, there were some who doubted it

 

 

Getting back to these little children,

 

These were not your little kindergarteners, Jesus said let the little children come unto me in Matt 19:14
If he allowed them to be killed, by this bear, it would look as though Gods Word could not be trusted

 
Apparently these little children, were old enough to hear about Elijah because what their saying in essence is:

 

Why don’t you take off like Elijah did

 

They were ridiculing Gods man

 

 

The word children here in Hebrew is “nahar”. Which = young man

 

This same word is used at Sodom and Gomorrah of the young men who attempted to attack the Angels

These young children were in reality probably in their 20′s

 

They knew exactly what they were doing and were old enough to know better

 
This is the same attitude people will have that We talked about just before the rapture

 

People will mock Christians and our God, as we are beginning to see starting today

 

 

But we do learn something about Elisha, he had a bald head

 

Now I’ve been told that God made Good looking men bald headed,
everyone else he gave hair
I’m living proof that’s a lie

 

Something else we can get from these pages also
Notice the swift judgment

 
There’s a great deal of soft soaping in our legal system today

 

You can’t call terrorist, terrorist, if a terrorist kills people at a job, it’s called work place violence
As they yell Allah Akbar

 

Under Obama he has proven that he is always on the Muslims side
As you can’t say anything negative about them
Today the criminal has more rights than the victim
if you point your finger at someone like its a gun, you can go to prison for yrs

 

If a cop protects himself from being assaulted or even killed,
he is put on trial and looked as though he’s a criminal

 
You can have gangs of people rip a town apart and it’s justified and excuses are given

 
There’s over 100 scandals in our White House
But the people committing the scandals are never at fault
it’s always someone else’s fault
Elisha brought swift judgment and sentenced them to death
the Bears carried out the sentence

 
Justice was served and no one else in Bethel ever made another accusation or ridiculed Elisha

 
There’s coming a day of judgment and this is where Christians have to come to the truth of Gods word

 

If you want to say your saved and still live and talk like the devil
There’s going to be a day, that you’ll pay for that

 
If you don’t accept Christ as savior and the way into heaven
You will go to hell and spend eternity with the other fellow

 

It’s our choice who we want to spend eternity with

 
Christians have got to quit this notion that everyone’s going to heaven
Their not and we have to stop making excuses for family members where there’s no proof of salvation

 
Christians have to also stop this notion that they can get away with sin, you can’t

 

These young men decided to fight against God, they lost

 

And soon, this world that has fought against God
Will be judged, and they will lose

 

Elisha is going to be their prophet
And he is going to act on the behalf of God himself

 

Elisha is going to be a portrait of Christ, working miracles and executing judgment
Just as Christ did when he was here and will once again in the future

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nov 8

The life of Elisha

Were going to take a look at Elisha, something that I’ve never done on Sunday morning

 

Seems like most people concentrate on Elijah,
but in many ways, Elisha was a greater prophet than Elijah

 
In II Kings Elijah has come to the end of his ministry,

 

and the Lord has told him on that particular day he was going to be taken to heaven

 
What would you do differently, if you knew you were going to be taken to heaven next week Friday?

 

Would you try to repent of some sins, and try to make yourself more acceptable before you meet the Lord?
Would you go to some people that perhaps you have hurt with unkind words and make amends?

 
Would you go to some people who you know aren’t saved and tell them one more time about a Savior?

 

Would you regret some of the things you’ve done, or how you’ve acted or treated people?

 

 

I wonder what Elijah contemplated on, what was his thoughts as he was about to meet God face to face?

 

I bet everyone of us, if we knew next Friday we were going to meet Jesus

 

Would rethink how we’ve conducted our lives, fact is we could meet Jesus today?
I’m sure Elijah was rethinking some things and wasn’t sure what was going to happen
because look at what he tells Elisha

 

II Kgs 2:1-2
He tells Elisha to stay put and he would go on to Bethel

 

It kind of makes me wonder, if he wasn’t thinking about Elisha’s safety?

 
Perhaps he thought the Lord might bring some horrific natural act
that would take his life and he didn’t want Elisha near

 

We’re not sure
But Elisha wasn’t having any of that,
he knows the Lord was going to take him from the earth that day

 
And he tells Elijah where you go and whatever happens, I’m going to be by your side

 
But why was Elisha so dedicated to Elijah?

 

Elijah was more than a friend to Elisha, he was his spiritual father

 
You may wonder what exactly is that?

 

A spiritual father is someone who is more mature and knowledgeable about the things of God
And they take someone who is immature but who has a heart for God and mentors them

 
Over the yrs pastor Boeve became my spiritual father

 

He’s the one who took me under his wing, licensed me, and taught me about the ministry

 

He discussed with me things about Gods Word and still does

 

 

We think this should be the role of parents
But usually it’s the duty and the privilege of parents to lead their children to faith in Christ

 

But when the Lord has called someone into the ministry,
He will usually bring someone else into their lives to get them established

 
That’s what Elijah did for Elisha, that’s what Aud did for me

 
When that type of spiritual mentoring takes place
A deep bond begins that cannot be broken, and there’s a dedication to that spiritual father

 
That’s what taken place between these two men

 

Elisha is dedicated to Elijah, and whatever takes place, he is going to be there by his side

 

But let’s start at II Kgs 2: 6-8
You’ll remember that the Lord parted this same river 500 yrs earlier for Joshua and the people of Israel to cross over

 

And here the Lord does the same thing for Elijah and Elisha

 
Elijah takes off his robe and he hits the water with it

 
And as they get to the other side, Elisha asks Elijah a question
Vs9-10
Elisha wanted a double portion of his spirit

 
They both already knew that God had selected Elisha to succeed Elijah in the prophetic office

That had been revealed back in I Kings 19:16
The Lord tells Elijah that he is to anoint Elisha to someday take his place

 

Right there, Elijah knew he was to mentor this young man for the ministry

 
Go back to II Kings 2: 9-10

 

what Elisha was asking for wasn’t out of selfishness wanting to be greater than Elijah

 

(Although it turned out that way)

 
Elisha actually did twice as many miracles and was far more faithful than Elijah was
His asking for a double portion meant that he wanted the prophetic ministry of Elijah to continue

 

and be doubly blessed by reaching even a greater number of people

 
He knew that only God could grant such a request

 

Vs11

This was a spectacular ending to a spectacular life

 

You talk about one fancy way of going to heaven

 
But I want you to think about something here,
most people when they think of heaven
They think of it in spiritual ways

 

We all have wings & halos, and we float around on clouds

 

But Elijah is in his physical body, which means he is walking on something in heaven

 
Heaven isn’t just a spiritual place, it’s also a real physical world

 

And to be honest, I have a hard time grasping in my little brain what heaven will really be like

 

Vs 12

Elisha tears his clothes in two

 

This has 2 significant meanings
First, the old ministry was done and a new ministry had begun

 

Secondly, he has just lost a good friend, the team had been torn apart and he’s mourning

 
When our brother-in-law passed away in August, We mourned

 

To be honest I cried my eyes out

 
And it had nothing to do with the question of him being in heaven or not

 

Sal and I, lost not only our brother in law but a dear friend

 

Even Jesus wept over Lazarus, and he knew what was going to take place!
It’s quite natural to mourn over losing people you love, although you know their in heaven

 

We almost lost Ken the other week and I’m sure someone would have mourned!

 

 

Elisha has now been given the office of prophet

 

The office of prophet lasted until the last Apostle died, who was Paul

 
A prophet was one who was sent and who received direct revelations from God

 
As Paul completed the New Testament with direct revelations from God that he recorded
That office stopped and God gave the church pastors and teachers

 
It’s their job to take the prophecies that were given to us through his bible

 

And preach for the salvation of souls and teach believers so that they will mature spiritually

 

 

At times we will hear of someone who will claim they are a prophet who is receiving revelations from God

 

Visions, or out of body experiences, & visits to heaven

 
Those individuals are actually standing against the Word of God

Everything that we need today in order to have a relationship with Christ
And everything we need to know about how to live the Christian life
And everything we need to know about future events

 

Has already been given

 

 

And the only thing that is going to happen in the future

 

Is the fulfillment of what has already been written

 

 

So when we hear someone announce that they have a revelation,
or God has spoken to them about some new thing
Turn them off, get away from them because they are in opposition to the Word of God

 

The church has been weakened due to accepting false prophets

 
Our young people have been led astray due to those who have convinced them
That they have received something new from God

 

I cannot stress to our young people enough and I wish someone had pounded this in my head when I was young

 

All you need for the rest of your life is one good bible
You don’t need a library of Christian books, everything you need to conduct your life and have the wisdom of God

Is one good bible
Elisha asked for a double portion of Elijah’s spirit

 

Not only so that the ministry would continue
But that it would continue grounded in the truth and he would be protected from anything false

 
Vs13-14

 

When Elijah is swept away into heaven, his robe falls off him

 

This goes along with what it tells us in Revelation that we will be given white robes

 

Elijah had graduated to earning that

 

So Elisha picks it up and the first thing he does is hits the water and he asks a question

 

Where is the Lord God of Elijah?

 

Why did he ask this?

 
You’ll remember he asked Elijah for a double portion of his spirit

 

But he didn’t know if he had received it

 
So when he struck that water, and it split in two

 

He knew his request was answered

How many times do we pray for something specific

 

But then we forget about what we asked for because life just gets busy?

 
Elisha hadn’t forgotten what he asked for

 

And we shouldn’t either, we need to see it through until we get an answer no matter what it is

 

Vs:15-18

 

Elisha goes over the Jordan and as soon as the people saw him they knew he was their new prophet of God

 

Perhaps they saw the river depart and him walk over

However it was that they knew, they bowed before him

 
This was an act of respect and accepting him as their new leader

 

 

But as we know, people are people
Vs16-18
The people weren’t sure if Elijah was really taken to heaven or if God just put him somewhere else

 
Elisha tells them not to go, he went to heaven, don’t question him

 

But they do question him, so Elisha says go ahead and look, but you won’t find him
And they go and search for 3 days and come up empty

 

And Elisha says I told you not to go

 

 

I know how frustrating it is, when you tell people this is what God says
And they say, we don’t believe you

 
There has to be a degree of trust between a pastor and his congregation

 

That trust of course has to be earned

 

But when it’s earned, the congregation should be able to rest in what he’s saying and learn from him
That’s how we mature as Christians, when leadership and their congregations trust each other

 

But if you can’t trust your pastor, your maturity will be hindered

 
Elisha has to now earn the trust of the people, so that they can grow in the things of God

 

His ministry is about to take off and as we will see,

 

It’s going to be a bumpy road

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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