This episode wraps up our current series titled “Courage and Confrontation” which follows the life and times of Elijah. This has been a truly amazing series and has come with God’s perfect timing. I hope these teachings have encouraged everyone who listens. I have to tell you all, I love this specific episode, I think it really places things into context not only from a ministry standpoint, but as a way to approach various aspects of life. Dad talks about his early days in ministry well before I was born or dad had even made it to Ponca City where he met my mother Crystal. As always, we would love to hear from you all any way you like, email, facebook, instagram, etc. We love hearing how these messages resonate with you, it encourages us and keeps and energizes us to keep pushing out new episodes and content.
So let’s get into the introduction of our final episode. Prior to the Prophet Elijah's encounter with King Ahab over Naboth's vineyard, he had been walking through an agricultural area in Israel and he spotted a young man plowing his field. There were eleven teams of oxen plowing in front of this man and he was plowing with a twelfth team of oxen.
The sensitive spirit of the prophet Elijah instantly saw something in this man so he walked over to the young man and threw his mantle around his shoulders. Elijah would later discover that the name of this man was Elisha, the son of Shaphat. This farmer turned from his team of oxen, and said to Elijah, "Please let me kiss my father and mother and then I will follow you." Elijah agreed.
What Elisha did at this point was fascinating. He kissed his father and mother, then demonstrated his commitment to following Elijah in that he slaughtered his team of oxen, his sole means of support. Then set fire to his plow and yoke, his secondary means of support. He proceeded to cook the meat of the oxen and shared it with the people of his village and his family so that they could all enjoy one final meal together. Then, he followed Elijah from that point onward, serving him in any way that he possibly could.
That is the last we hear of Elisha for several years. Then, he reappears with Elijah at a place called Gilgal, the place where Israel camped upon first entering the Promised Land. He had seen many things since he had begun to follow Elijah.
For one thing, he had been with Elijah when King Ahaziah of Israel had sent a captain with fifty men to place Elijah under arrest. He watched as the prophet called down fire from heaven and those men were utterly consumed. He was also present when the king sent another group of fifty to arrest the prophet. Once again, he heard the prophet call down fire from heaven and saw those men consumed. Then, when another group of 50 came, Elisha heard the captain of the group appeal to the prophet to save his life. No doubt, the young prophet heard the voice of the angel of Yahweh, the pre existent Christ, tell to Elijah to save this captain and his men and to go back to Samaria with this captain and confront the King. This was a dangerous proposition, but Elijah did as he was told.
At this point, Elijah was aged. It is time for him to leave this earth, but he has a few things to do before that could occur. For one thing, he would take a quick ministry tour of the area, then, God would take him. This is the background for Pastor Harris’s teaching in this episode.
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