Elijah Taken to Heaven
2 And it came about when the Lord was about to take up Elijah by a [a]whirlwind to heaven, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal. 2 Elijah said to Elisha, “Stay here please, for the Lord has sent me as far as Bethel.” But Elisha said, “As the Lord lives and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So they went down to Bethel. 3 Then the sons of the prophets who were at Bethel came out to Elisha and said to him, “Do you know that the Lord will take away your master from over [b]you today?” And he said, “Yes, I know; be still.”
4 Elijah said to him, “Elisha, please stay here, for the Lord has sent me to Jericho.” But he said, “As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So they came to Jericho. 5 The sons of the prophets who were at Jericho approached Elisha and said to him, “Do you know that the Lord will take away your master from over [c]you today?” And he [d]answered, “Yes, I know; be still.” 6 Then Elijah said to him, “Please stay here, for the Lord has sent me to the Jordan.” And he said, “As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you.” So the two of them went on.
7 Now fifty men of the sons of the prophets went and stood opposite them at a distance, while the two of them stood by the Jordan. 8 Elijah 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.
9 When they had crossed over, 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.” 10 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 As they were going along and talking, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire and horses of fire which separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a [e]whirlwind to heaven. 12 Elisha saw it and cried out, “My father, my father, the [f]chariots of Israel and its horsemen!” And he saw [g]Elijah no more. Then he took hold of his own clothes and tore them in two pieces. 13 He also took up the mantle of Elijah that fell from him and returned and stood by the bank of the Jordan. 14 He took the mantle of Elijah that fell from him and struck the waters 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.
Of all the things Elisha could have asked for, he asks for something Elijah does not have any control over. And so Elijah rightly leaves it in God’s hands, but tells Elisha what sign to look for as confirmation. Now, he saw the sign, Elijah taken up, but it almost seems like Elisha was a bit unsure of God. After all the time he had been with Elijah, God was not his own, but still the God of Elijah.
So when he approaches the bank, he asks a question that one wouldn’t expect, “Where is the Lord, the God of Elijah?” God could have seen his lack of faith and just dismissed Elisha’s request. But He doesn’t. Instead, God honors the promise given through Elijah that Elisha would have a double portion, and God shows up for him.
We don’t always have to have the faith of Elijah, after all, he had seen incredible things, and still ran into the wilderness to save his own life. But we do need to trust and believe that God is real, and that He wants to show up in our lives. As the old song says, “trust and obey, for there’s no other way, to be happy in Jesus…” Trust and obey, and God will always be a part of your life, through happy times and darkest trials. He will always be there.