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9 Elisha(3)

Open eyes of faith

UKings 2:7-14
Romans 10:31-39
T When God had a work there

 Sad cases continue. As for disasters and cases already continuing so inconsequent a lot, will we modern people be going to break peace, prosperity and the rich heart that still stay some in ourselves, to satisfy a division of a crime in front of God?

 I read a continuance of prophet Elisha again many times while thinking about such a thing. A baton pass of prophet is done from Elijah to Elisha here, but, in this article, I think that a challenge to the people who have lost sight of an important thing is loaded with, including us of the present age. It is from Verse 7.

 It begins, "While the two of them stood by the Jordan". There was a monument of John of Baptism in the place that is near from the river mouth where the Jordan flows into death Sea, the Jericho city. And there is a place that John gave Baptism to people first, in 10km ahead in the straight line to the east from there. Where Elijah and Elisha came is imagined that neighborhood. There was a place where a flow is strong, and Elijah stopped there, "took his mantle and folded it together and struck the waters. And they were divided here and there, so that the two of them crossed over on dry ground."(8), and there is it. In old days, in this neighborhood, there was an article that water of a river just hurries upstream and it is left, as soon as the priests who carried a box of a contract on their shoulder set foot in this river the soil which they longed for appeared, and 100,000 soldiers were able to cross a river. (Joshua Chapter 3) Will this action of Elijah imitate the historical fact? When God had a work there, he would want to show it to disciple Elisha.


U Only by faith

 They crossed the Jordan to the opposite bank. "Now it came about when they had crossed over, that Elijah said to Elisha, 'Ask what I shall do for you before I am taken from you.' And Elisha said, 'Please, let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.' And he said, 'You have asked a hard thing. Nevertheless, if you see me when I am taken from you, it shall be so for you; but if not, it shall not be so.'"(9-10) I touched it before, but, double portion of Elijah, it is the rights of the eldest child, there is it in Deuteronomy thus, "But he shall acknowledge the first-born, the son of the unloved, by giving him a double portion of all that he has,"(21:17). Elisha expects that here already becomes the ground of farewell with a teacher, and nonetheless waits for beginning to talk from Elijah. I feel it that is a conversation to suggest a defense range as his prophet, and he gives his life to only succeeding the work of Elijah.

 I want to try to take consideration of the faith of Elisha from <double portion>.
 On T Kings Chapter 19 when he met with Elijah, I admired that he used 12 cows and did well experienced smart farming although he is young, and it is felt from there that he received higher education than general Israeli. Of course, education is Old Testament education, but his Bible knowledge to be seen in here will be result of more higher education received from Elijah in Gilgal. He would appeal for need of further training by taking a right of the eldest child here. He says not "Please do" here but "Please, let be". As Elijah has called it a difficult order, but, he demands it to God through Elijah, after having known it is decided by God. It was his faith. And Elijah understood, that demand were things to God and it was his faith. Therefore he says "If you see me when I am taken from you, it shall be so for you; but if not, it shall not be so.". At the moment when Elijah was taken away, it was right a domain of God, and it was a domain that could look only by faith. May Elisha open eyes of faith and stare at that moment, it was a wish of Elijah to God, and at the same time, it was the last training to Elisha.


V Open eyes of faith

 And finally, the time of last of Elijah came over. "Then it came about as they were going along and talking, that behold, there appeared a chariot of fire and horses of fire which separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind to heaven. And Elisha saw it and cried out, 'My father, my father, the chariots of Israel and its horsemen!' And he saw him no more. Then he took hold of his own clothes and tore them in two pieces."(11-12) What kind of things a chariot of fire and horses of fire are, and what kind of role they have here, nobody can conclude, but I imagine, it lets us expect that fight telling words of God to people Israel of distrust which succeeded from Elijah is not peace at all. An act of Elisha which tore his clothes in two pieces is the sorrow that lost Elijah, but, I also suppose that was parting with conventional oneself.

 50 prophets looked at that state from the opposite bank. They watched determination of Elisha and recorded the action of Elisha carefully. When we look at Verse 15, they don't seem to have looked at that state but they were written after having watched Elisha who returned, and it is a way of writing that shared a soul of God which remains on him. It is felt to let the sacredness cheer up that the event of Elijah and Elisha generated on the other side of river was in a domain of God. They would record this event carefully while being afraid. "The mantle of Elijah that fell from him", it is written down twice in Verse 13-14, but it seems to be the thing which Elijah had left it for Elisha, not what fell by a whirlwind. He picked up that mantle and retraced to the Jordan. It is there thus, "And he took the mantle of Elijah and said, 'Where is the Lord, the God of Elijah?' And when he also had struck the waters, they were divided here and there; and Elisha crossed over."(14).

 The event that Elisha hit water with a mantle of Elijah and water of the Jordan was divided into both sides, it seemed just reproduced a state when he passed with Elijah a little before. God will have given double portion to Elisha. It is because Elisha opened eyes well and took faith, and did not take off his eyes from the One who should stare. It is not important that Elisha did miracle, but I want to pay attention to the thing that he stared at God. And it will be the thing which is important for us above all now. Paul says, "If God is for us, who is against us?" (Romans 8:31). The confusion, ignominious cases, and even an unprecedented disaster, they cannot let fear us who pay attention to God.