Summary: Shows how we can follow the example from Elisha in being properly equipped for God’s service
Elisha - Equipped for Service
Are you ready for tomorrow?
Kids are you ready for tomorrow?
Do you have all your notebooks and pens and #2 pencils crammed into your backpack ready for that bright and early wake up call?
Teachers are you ready for tomorrow?
Lessons plans in order, students desks lined up, books and supplies all ready to be dished out?
Bus drivers are you ready for tomorrow?
That alarm clock is going to be going off awfully early tomorrow morning for this bus driver
There is a lot of preparation that goes into each school year
And Melbourne has the added pressure of moving on top of everything else
In order for tomorrow and the rest of the school year to go off without a hitch is everyone must be properly equipped
You wouldn’t let some greenhorn come in and make up your class schedules
You don’t put a rookie in charge of all the bus routes
You must be properly equipped
This mornings message is entitled Elisha - Equipped for Service
Read Passage Equipped for Service
This greatly describes the life of Elisha
We first learn of Elisha in I Kings 19 and in v 19 we read
“Elijah went from there and found Elisha son of Shaphat. He was plowing with 12 yoke of oxen. Elijah went up to him and threw his cloak around him”
Now the cloak was the most important article of clothing a person could own
It was used as protection against the weather
As bedding, as a place to sit and as luggage
It could be given as a pledge for a debt or torn to pieces to show grief
Elijah put his cloak on Elisha’s shoulders to show that he would become Elijah’s successor
There is no indication in the scriptures how much time elapsed between the call of Elisha and the translation of Elijah
Whatever time there was must have included the constant companionship of the older prophet and the younger
Now it was time for old Elijah to be removed from the walks of men
And for Elisha to officially take his place
So this morning we are looking at several ways that Elisha was equipped for service
I. Follows his master’s footsteps
2 Kings 2:2 And Elijah said unto Elisha, Tarry here, I pray thee; for the LORD hath sent me to Bethel. And Elisha said unto him, As the LORD liveth, and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee. So they went down to Bethel.
Elijah starts his final, long journey
As he left for his meeting with the Lord Elijah requested Elisha to remain at Gilgal while he proceeded to Bethel
But Elisha refused
He pretty much said “Not on your life! I’m not letting you out of my sight”
Once they made it to Bethel they met up with a group of prophets there
During these times there were companies of prophets that met and possibly lived together for study, encouragement and service
Somehow these men knew Elijah’s time had come
And it seems these young prophets thought that Elisha was unaware
2 Kings 2:3 And the sons of the prophets that were at Bethel came forth to Elisha, and said unto him, Knowest thou that the LORD will take away thy master from thy head today? And he said, Yea, I know it; hold ye your peace.
He answered them I know, hold your peace, say nothing about it, keep it quiet
It was like he didn’t want to talk about it
He knew what was going to take place
Probably didn’t know exactly how it would happen
But he knew his master must leave in order for him to take his place
But still Elisha followed
Again Elijah urged Elisha to stay as he went to Jericho
But Elisha refused
He continued to follow his masters footsteps
One last time Elijah asked Elisha to stay behind before he crossed the Jordan
But again Elisha continued to follow closely
At this point these two had gathered a crowd of spectators
It says in v7
2 Kings 2:7 And fifty men of the sons of the prophets went, and stood to view afar off: and they two stood by Jordan.
This group stood afar off to watch from a safe distance
But Elisha stood beside his master
To be equipped for service we need to follow our master’s footsteps
Personal devotion ought to keep us walking closely with the Master
Ruth 1:16 says “wherever you go , I will go
We should strive to follow our Master as closely as we can
There may be times we want to quit
There are always opportunities to quit
Elijah gave Elisha plenty of chance to quit
Jesus told His followers to take up their cross daily and follow Him