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When God Does Not Make Sense

THURSDAY 2 Kings 2:14-15

This week our devotions will center around the transition from Elijahs’s ministry to Elisha’s in 2 Kings 2, which culminates in the strange text in 2 Kings 2:23-25. This story brings up a difficult issue for Christians: Sometimes God does not make sense! These devotions come primarily from https://enduringword.com/bible-commentary/2-kings-2/#top . The devotions will set the stage for this difficult text on which Melanie Ciccalese will preach next Sunday.

How God works rarely makes sense to us. Why did God take Elijah away and not continue to use him? Why take Elijah in a whirlwind and not just let him die peacefully? Why does God sometimes use drama and miracles (1 Kings 18:38) and other times show up in sheer stillness (1 Kings 19:11-12)? Our “Why?” gets few answers. Elisha’s “Where?”gets a miraculous response.   We need to be careful about our questions when God does not make sense.

2 Kings 2:14-15
Then he took the mantle of Elijah that had fallen from him, and struck the water, and said, “Where is the LORD God of Elijah?” And when he also had struck the water, it was divided this way and that; and Elisha crossed over. Now when the sons of the prophets who were from Jericho saw him, they said, “The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha.” And they came to meet him, and bowed to the ground before him.

a. Where is the LORD God of Elijah: Elisha knew that the power in prophetic ministry did not rest in mantles or fiery chariots. It rested in the presence and work of the Living God. If the LORD God of Elijah were also with Elisha, then he would inherit the same power and direction of ministry.

i. This was a great question to ask. If God expected Elisha to continue on the ministry of Elijah, then He must be present for the junior prophet in the same ways He was for the senior prophet.

b. When he also struck the water, it was divided: This shows that Elisha immediately had the same power in ministry that Elijah had. He went back over a divided Jordan River the same way that he and Elijah first came over the river.

i. “And when you have got their mantle, do not waste precious time in lamentations about them any more; get to your business. There is a river in your way; what then? Well, go to the Jordan as the prophet Elisha did, and try to pass it. Say not, ‘Where is Elijah?’ but ‘Where is the Lord God of Elijah?’ Elijah is gone, but his God is not; Elijah has gone away, but Jehovah is present, still.” (Spurgeon)

c. The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha: The succession of Elisha to the power and office of Elijah was apparent to others. Elisha didn’t need to persuade or convince them of this with words. God’s blessing on his actions was enough to prove it.