Pursuing Like Elisha
8 “Now Elijah took his mantle, rolled it up, and struck the water; and it was divided this way and that, so that the two of them crossed over on dry ground. 9 And so it was, when they had crossed over, that Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask! What may I do for you, before I am taken away from you?” Elisha said, “Please let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.” 10 So 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.” 11 Then it happened, as they continued on and talked, that suddenly a chariot of fire appeared with horses of fire, and separated the two of them; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.” 2 Kings 2:8-11 NKJV
In one of those great moments in the Bible, we see the power and authority of the Lord transferred from Elijah to Elisha. The two are traveling from to the Jordan River and three times Elijah tells Elisha to wait for him, but on each occasion, Elisha says that he will not wait but will go where his master goes. In the verses above Elijah crosses over the Jordan with Elisha as 50 of the sons of the prophets follow, but stay behind on the other side of the Jordan.
Elisha asks for the double portion of the power of the Spirit of Elijah and Elijah tells him that if he witnesses the spiritual event, then the double portion is his. If he does not see it then the increase of power and authority will not be his. It is noteworthy that Elisha saw the spiritual event transpire but the 50 sons of the prophets who watched across the Jordan River did not see it.
Here is the lesson; Elisha would not relent in his pursuit of the fullness of the power and authority of the Lord. Each time he was told to wait, he pushed on to be with his mentor and receive the power. The others stood by and only watched as Elisha pursued the authority. We need to be like Elisha and not the 50 as we pursue the power and authority of Jesus. Too often we have stood by and watched. It is time to pursue.
Elisha had asked to receive, and the answer was contingent upon what he saw. It came down to this for Elisha, where was he looking? Did he see with spiritual eyes trained to expect to see beyond the natural, or was he looking with the eyes of the flesh? If the latter, then like the 50 who were standing across the river he would not have received the double portion.
Pursue the fullness of Jesus in your life, do not relent, hesitate or wait. Keep pursuing with your eyes always on Him. The new covenant promises of power and authority that await you are far superior to anything even Elisha could ever hope to receive! He desired a double portion, we have that and more!
J Todd Hostetler