2 Kings 1-4

1:1-16 – Ahaziah gets sick after falling, wants to use divination to determine if he is going to get better or not.

-“Ahaziah was aware of the seriousness of his physical condition. In such circumstances a man’s basic spiritual temperament will often surface.” (Expositors)

-God intervenes pretty dramatically to make it clear that he is judging Ahaziah

2:1-6 – Elijah is getting ready to go to the Lord, and Elisha sticks with him as long as he can

-Elisha obviously loved Elijah and was sad to lose him

-“Three times Elijah had tested his successor; thrice Elisha stood the test.” (Expositors)

  • The locations for these interactions had historical significance
    • Gilgal = first stop after crossing the Jordan – circumcision and Passover (Josh 5)
    • Bethel = site of Jacob’s encounter with God
    • Jericho = first town to fall to Joshua
    • The Jordan = parted by Joshua to enter the land

2:9 – the one thing that Elisha asked for was the ability to carry on Elijah’s work

-This is the most honoring thing in a spiritual friendship/mentorship like this

Q: What are some wrong reasons for wanting to take on a position of spiritual leadership?

-Recognition

-Power

-Significance

 

2:10 – Elijah warns Elisha that he is asking for something that will involve suffering

-It’s not all glamour to take over someone’s ministry

Q: What are some areas where we might be called to suffer if we are going to lead for God?

Q: So then why should we desire this?

Q: What are some things you can do now to be ready when God calls you?

2:13-14 – God makes it clear that Elisha is indeed the heir apparent for Elijah.

2:15 – Other people recognize this as well

-There is a balance here: Don’t want to get too worldly and just take on leadership, but don’t want to get superspiritual and pretend like I don’t want any leadership.  Need to be faithful, and be ready to step into positions of greater responsibility when God calls us.

 

2:19-22 – Elisha purifies the water for the city of Jericho

-19–22 “The chapter closes with two miracles of Elisha. These immediately established the character of his ministry—his would be a helping ministry to those in need, but one that would brook no disrespect for God and his earthly representatives.” (Expositors)

-The time of judgment against the city of Jericho was over

2:23-24 – God judges some young men that were mocking his spokesman

Application: God is more important than any one human agent

-Elijah is listed as one of the most important prophets of the OT.  But Elisha had to carry on the ministry.  Couldn’t let insecurity prevent him from serving.

 

3:11 – Jehoshaphat is again the one reminding the king of Israel to seek out a prophet of the Lord

3:13 – Elisha doesn’t want anything to do with Jehoram because he isn’t following God, and talks to him only because Jehoshaphat is there.

3:16-20 – God provides water for the animals

-“This is but a slight thing in the sight of the Lord”

3:21-27 – The alliance annihilates Moab, until the king of Moab offers his oldest son as a burnt offering.

 

4:1-7 – Elisha helps a woman keep her children out of slavery

 

4:8-17 – Elisha helps a barren woman become pregnant

Q:What are some things the Lord might be able to give us if we’re serving him?

4:18-37 – He brings the boy back from the dead

Q: What do you see about this woman’s response?

-She holds onto her gifts lightly. AND she and her son are used powerfully in God’s plan.

4:38-44 – Elisha rescues prophets from a poisoned stew so that they could eat during a famine

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