Sermons Series 3:40f, 17 June 2006
The Spirit of Elijah
Par6: Fire from Heaven and a Successor
Click here for Part 5
We conclude our six-part study of the life of the prophet Elijah and we discover that it has, in effect, come around full circle. Despite one relapse, in which he panicked before the 'terrible mother', the life of this Tishbite has been impeccable. We are reminded so much of the prophet Samuel who watched over the Kingdom of Israel through its shakey start under an unreliable king, Saul, and we see the same thing these two men - constancy. Finally, we remember the Prophet - the Prophets of prophets, Yah'shua the Messiah, who displayed this characteristic to perfection. Though severely tried to the limit in the Garden of Gethsemane, He remained true to His calling and took His heavy load to the cross on our behalf and won the victory over sin.
Today, then, we celebrate the constancy of Yahweh's servants who see their callings through, no matter how tough the going gets and no matter how they may, on occasion, want to run. These are men of principle who love the truth more than their own lives because they know, deep down in the depths of their soul, that the spirit of compromise never yields good fruits. They know that if they fail in their calling that many will suffer because of them. They are Elohim's 'men of the moment', like spiritual commandos who strike the right blow at the right time and bring kingdoms of evil toppling. There are not many of them so when they act, they make a real difference.
Last Wednesday I had a dream which I hope those of you called into the prophetic ministry will find sobering. And since we are all as believers called into prophetic ministry to one degree or another, I hope it will bless everyone hearing me today.
In the dream I was walking along a beach bordered by a very tall cliff. As I walked rocks were being rolled off the top of the cliff and came crashing down. Whoever was moving them was doing so with malice aforethought because they followed me wherever I went. They always missed but were sufficiently close sometimes as to be alarming. So long as I had my eyes on Yah'shua, I was able to walk through this bombardment totally unscathed. But when I started focussing on the potential danger, my heart began to get afraid. I imagined what one of those large rocks falling on my head would do and realised I would be killed. Well, in the dream, that's what I did do - I began to contemplate what might happen if I got hit by one of those. This caused a mild panic and so I thought to myself: "If I move away from the rocky cliff, I will be in far less danger of being hit." So I broke cover and walked farther out onto the beach. No sooner had I done this than I saw numerous people on the cliff whom I had not seen before, and the moment I was spotted by the one nearest to me, he picked up a rock and aimed pretty accurately at me, missing me only by a hair's breadth. From that point I was exposed and 'on the run'.
Now I am sure that those of you with prophetic hindsight know the mistake I made. The rocky side of the cliff was Yah'shua giving me protection so that the enemy could not see their target. The moment I started moving into the unknown - wondering what might happen to me - I broke cover, left the rock of Messiah, and became a sitting target. I made the same mistake that Elijah did, actually, when he panicked before Queen Jezebel. Of course upon awakening I saw my error, repented, and returned to the 'cliff'.
There were many other dreams that followed this 'breaking of cover', none of them good, illustrating the high risk a disciple takes when he loses his Christ-focus. I'll tell you the second one as it is particularly instructive. The next thing I knew I was in a crudely constructed wooden tower in the desert, rather like a watchmen's tower on the walls of a prison. I was in the middle of nowhere - a desert, in fact. Approaching me was a man, a very big man of Goliath's proportions, and his name was Enosh. He came very cautiously towards me. So there I was, stuck in this tower, with a giant approaching. There was nowhere to 'run' and judging by his size he could easily have crushed the tower and brought me tumbling down. The tower was not, in any case, particularly tall. He could have reached up to me with outstretched arms. I panicked, drew an air pistol and shot him in the chest. There was a tinny sound of lead hitting metal and dropping off. He had iron plates under his clothes. Indeed, he was as surprsied as I was - me, because I could see that I was defenceless, and he because he thought that I was a lot more powerful than I actually was. You should have seen the expression on his face change from mild shock do a sarcastic grin. He knew he had me, I know he had me, and that I was cornered. So I did what Jacob did when Esau approached him at the River Jabokk when he feared that his vengeful, elder brother would slay him. Jacob sent him presents of great value and I, when the giant Enosh approached me, patted him on the shoulder and told him what a great guy he was.
From that moment onwards the demonic had a field day with me. I shan't repeat the other dreams. As I said, when I woke up, I saw and confessed my error, repented, and returned to where I had been. Now for those of you who have not figured out the second dream yet, it is very simple. 'Enosh', incidentally, is a Hebrew word meaning 'mortal', the equivalent of the 'flesh'. The moment you take your eyes of Yah'shua, enter the unknown and start fearing, you submit to the mortal flesh and lose your immortal, eternal covering in Yah'shua.
Now my little pop-gun was simply an attempt to defend myself in my own strength, just as the tower was an attempt to find a safe and unreachable hiding place in my own strength like the hermit Simon Styletes on top of his ladderless pillar. Both spectacularly failed, as one would expect. It is at such times that the flesh appears larger than life and we seem helpless and defenceless with no alternative but to make a treaty with the enemy and compromise the truth. Most believers are doing this all the time and it's fatal. And it's totally unnecessary. Under that cliff I was perfectly safe. That cliff-face - that rock, though hardly a 5-star hôtel, was the best any man could ever want - it was my 'rock of salvation' (1 Cor.10:5) and it shielded me from the enemy. These are what the prophet Isaiah calls the "walls of salvation" which are linked together with the "gates of praise" (Is.60:18).
Before Elijah yielded to the flesh in the form of a furious Jezebel, His walls were Yahweh and his goal was the Evening Sacrifice, the 'Gates of Praise'. Before he fled into the wilderness of Sinai, he was calling fire down from heaven on the evening sacrifice and his enemies were destroyed. But lest we get too carried away with the thought of calling fire down from heaven for every and any difficult or challenging occasion when enemies oppose us, it is well to recall the misguided zeal of the apostles John and James who wished to do the same on a Samartican village for rejecting their message, doubtless as they remembered the fate of Sodom and Gemorah (Luke 17:28-29):
"As the time approached for him to be taken up to heaven, Yah'shua resolutely set out for Jerusalem. And he sent messengers on ahead, who went into a Samaritan village to get things ready for him; but the people there did not welcome him, because he was heading for Jerusalem. When the disciples James and John saw this, they asked, 'Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to destroy them?' But Yah'shua turned and rebuked them, and they went to another village" (Luke 9:51-56, NIV).
Yah'shua did, however, say that fire would descend from heaven in the last days, prior to His return to execute Yahweh's judgment against a miltantly rebellious world (Lk.17:30). But He also warned that in these last times Satan's servants would call down counterfeit fire from heaven, presumably to deceive believers as well as to impress his followers:
"And he performed great and miraculous signs, even causing fire to come down from heaven to earth in full view of men. Because of the signs he was given power to do on behalf of the first beast, he deceived the inhabitants of the earth" (Rev.13:13-14, NIV).
"When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth- Gog and Magog - to gather them for battle. In number they are like the sand on the seashore. They marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of Elohim's people, the city He loves. But fire came down from heaven and devoured them. And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulphur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever" (Rev.20:7-10, NIV).
I don't think it is any accident that similar patterns of divine activity are being repeated today, remembering that the return of the Ruach haEliYah or Spirit of Elijah was prophesied by Malachi in the end-times. Not only do I believe that those operating in this Ruach will experience fire from heaven to consume violent and murderous adversaries but that they will be tried and tested, as they flee in panic before Jezebels, in order to establish their faith on an impenetrably rocky foundation. No matter what our calling or ministry may be, whether as father, prophet, mother, prophetess, pastor, evangelist, deacon, or whatever, we will all be tried. This trial may not be appreciated but it will be seen to be essential for these dangerous times.
We are now at the end of Elijah's ministry. Ahab is dead, fatally wounded in battle whilst trying to hide himself as an ordinary soldier. A new king has replaced him, Ahaziah, who has had an accident falling through some latticework in his upper chamber. But instead of consulting a prophet of Yahweh about his recovery, he imitates the apostacy of his predecessor and insteads consults Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron.
"But the angel of Yahweh said to Elijah the Tishbite, 'Go up and meet the messengers of the king of Samaria and ask them, 'Is it because there is no Elohim in Israel that you are going off to consult Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron?' Therefore this is what Yahweh says: 'You will not leave the bed you are lying on. You will certainly die!'' So Elijah went" (2 Kings 1:3-4, NIV).
Truly did Yahweh say in His Torah:
"[Yahweh] does not leave the guilty unpunished; He punishes the children and their children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation" (Ex.34:7, NIV).
The son of unrepentant Ahab has clearly, and not surprisingly, followed in his father's idolatrous footsteps. Jezebel, you will recall, is still alive, and with such an upbringing it is hardly surprising that there has been no reformation. You will recall, moreover, that Elijah prophesied the death of the whole of Ahab's family line so all we are seeing is the fulfillment of prophecy coming closer. No doubt it was Jezebel's suggestion that Ahaziah consult the demon-god of Ekron. The vassal state of Moab is in revolt and this king, who is only to rule for two years, is about to try and conclude an abortive merchant naval treatly with Judean King, Jehoshaphat, who survived Ahab on the same battle field (2 Chr.20:35-26).
Ahaziah has the blood of his devilish mother Jezebel in him and, upon deducing that it was Elijah who had prophesied against him, and, forgetting the spiritual stature of this man of Yahweh and the defeat of his father and mother on Mount Carmel, sent troops to arrest him.
Now how stupid can you get! Yet it should come as no surprise to us to learn that a stubborn, hardened and rebellious heart knows no reason because it is driven by powers it has no control over. The demonic wanted Elijah dead at all costs so that Satan could further his paganization of the land of Israel, and it did not concern them - and still does not concern them - how many humans have to be offered in the process. Which was why, no doubt, waves and waves of satanists were sent against us and why hundreds lie dead today. And the enemy will try it again as soon as they believe they have found a weakness. That is why the enemy of your soul is unrelenting. He won't give up until either you are destroyed or he is. So do not be deceived by apparent 'lulls' in the battle. Don't assume the enemy has given up. He'll be back. And remember: he has nothing to lose. He knows he's defeated and has only one goal: to destroy as many humans as he can before his day of evil is brought to a final conclusion. That is why tyrants fight to the bitter end - it's why Hitler presided over the destruction of an entire nation instead of surrendering two or three years earlier when he had the chance to spare the country from near total destruction.
"Then [Ahaziah] sent to Elijah a captain with his company of fifty men. The captain went up to Elijah, who was sitting on the top of a hill, and said to him, 'Man of Elohim, the king says, 'Come down!'' Elijah answered the captain, 'If I am a man of Elohim, may fire come down from heaven and consume you and your fifty men!' Then fire fell from heaven and consumed the captain and his men'" (2 Kings 1:9-10, NIV).
Here we go again. Fire from heaven consuming the adversaries of Yahweh. Now you may ask: "But why punish the captain and his 50 men? Isn't the king to blame? Shouldn't the punishment fall upon him?" But if you say that then you have fundamentally not understood something about the responsibility we have for the choices we make. All these men were employees of the king. They knew what kind of man he was. They knew what kind of people his father and mother were. They knew about Yahweh, they knew about Torah, they knew what Yahweh did on Mount Carmel to their king's mother's pagan prophets. They knew about all the other miracles that Yahweh had done through Elijah, including the time when the prophet outran the king's father's chariot! They knew all these things and yet they chose to remain in the presumably lucrative employment of the king. They were responsible for their choices. And when modern-day Ahaziah's and their employees do the same thing, they must expect the same judgment from Yahweh. You are responsible when you choose to come against Yahweh's servants having previously had a witness. You might as well come up against Yahweh Himself, not because His servants are supermen but because Yahweh has chosen to act through them in His soveregn will. And why does He use them? Because they have zeal for Him and have faith in Him.
People will argue the morals and ethics of the slaughter of the sin-drenched, child-murdering Canaanite population in the days of Joshua until the cows come home, and they will do the same over incidents like this. But what good will it do them? They too have to face reality one day. They too have to face the truth. They can't escape it.
So a captain and 50 men are dead, burned to ashes by heavenly fire at the word of the prophet. But, oh no, that stupid hard-hearted king does the same thing again, despatching another captain with 50 men. After all, they're not his lives. And what happens?
"The captain said to him, 'Man of Elohim, this is what the king says, 'Come down at once!'' 'If I am a man of Elohim,' Elijah replied, 'may fire come down from heaven and consume you and your fifty men!' Then the fire of Elohim fell from heaven and consumed him and his fifty men'" (2 Kings 1:11-12, NIV).
102 dead soldiers so far. Doesn't this sound famiar? Yet, what is Ahaziah's reaction? Predictable, isn't it?
"So the king sent a third captain with his fifty men. This third captain went up and fell on his knees before Elijah. 'Man of Elohim,' he begged, 'please have respect for my life and the lives of these fifty men, your servants! See, fire has fallen from heaven and consumed the first two captains and all their men. But now have respect for my life!'" (2 Kings 1:13-14, NIV).
O the sweet, sweet sound of repentance! At last, someone who cares about his men before his pagan king. At last, someone with his priorities right! At last, a little humility! And do you know what? Yahweh listens to a broken and contrite heart. He listens to those who think about others before themselves and who aren't totally absorbed with 'I' or 'me'. He listens to those who fear Him more than men (Ps.51:17). So what is the result? Grace! Mercy! Hope!
"The angel of Yahweh said to Elijah, 'Go down with him; do not be afraid of him.' So Elijah got up and went down with him to the king" (2 Kings 1:15, NIV).
51 men have had their lives spared because of an act of contrition and humility. 51 men are alive because pride was dismounted. Not only that, Yahweh shows mercy to this captain, given his precarious position as an employee of this murderous king, and actually fulfils the king's request so that the captain may safely report that he has done his duty and is not guilty of neglect or sedition. Yes, he's made a bad choice of employer, but Yahweh is full of grace. Yes, modern day satanists have made a 'bad choice' inasmuch as they are serving the devil who hates their guts and would, and does, happily use them as canon fodder. And yes, they were born into satanism and know nothing else until men of Yahweh enter their lives, Yahweh is revealed to them, and they can make a choice - to stop killing, raping and torturing, and trust Him to deliver them, even if it means risking their lives. They then have a choice - to fear Elohim more than Satan. They have a choice to sacrifice themselves rather than to make others suffer. They have a real choice! And more so when Yahweh is opening a door of escape for them. They do not have to remain slaves. There is a genuine offer of freedom but they must take the responisbility to make the right choice in refusing to hurt others, even at their own personal cost because this is a sign of genuine repentance. It is only when we put our own skin first and compromise with Esau or 'Enosh' that we risk spurning salvation and end up destroyed.
"[Elijah] told the king, 'This is what Yahweh says: Is it because there is no Elohim in Israel for you to consult that you have sent messengers to consult Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron? Because you have done this, you will never leave the bed you are lying on. You will certainly die!' So he died, according to the word of Yahweh that Elijah had spoken" (2 Kings 1:16-17, NIV).
Who do you consult when you have a problem? The messengers of Satan or the messengers of Yahweh? Who are your counsellors? Believers or unbelievers? Lawless believers or Torah-obedient believers? If a messenger of Yahweh delivers a call to repentance to you, do you repent or go elsewhere seeking for an 'alternative solution' - an 'easier' way out? Or do you remain double-minded? All the stories we have studied so far about two of the kings of Israel and the people of Israel themselves have shown a remarkable unwillingness on the part of the majority to do what is right. Yahweh has had to raise and send in extraordinary men to wake them up and He is going to do the same in our day. Will you listen to them or scorn them? Many prophets will arise in these last days, along with thousands of false ones who love to tickle men's ears with lies and tell them what they want to hear.
We end our study of the life of Elijah by taking a look at the relationship between him and his apprentice, Elisha. The second chapter of the second book of Kings has some remarkable stories and spiritual lessons which we will look at. Remembering that the prophets are a little 'unusual' will help explain what can sometimes appear as bizzare behaviour upon first sight. We read:
"When Yahweh was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal. Elijah said to Elisha, 'Stay here; Yahweh has sent me to Bethel.' But Elisha said, 'As surely as Yahweh lives and as you live, I will not leave you.' So they went down to Bethel" (2 Kings 2:1-2, NIV).
Now your first reaction here might have been: why did Elisha disobey his master? He was, after all, in a servant position as a spiritual son and apprentice. Notice that Elijah did not protest this apparent disobedience. Why? To answer that question we must backtrack to the forefather of the nation, Israel or Jacob himself, to a parallel incident which I here recall for you as we read from Genesis:
"So Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacob's hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man. Then the man said, 'Let me go, for it is daybreak.' But Jacob replied, 'I will not let you go unless you bless me.' The man asked him, 'What is your name?' 'Jacob,' he answered. Then the man said, 'Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with Elohim and with men and have overcome.' Jacob said, 'Please tell me your name.' But he replied, 'Why do you ask my name?' Then he blessed him there" (Gen.32:24-29, NIV).
Now it is true that Jacob did not know who the man was at first. Not until afterwards was he able to say, "I saw Elohim face to face" (Gen.32:30, NIV). And as you know, we believe it was the pre-incarnate Yah'shua that he wrestled with.
Now understand this: before Yahweh will give you His choicest blessings, you have to fight for them and prevail over your flesh. Elijah was the most remarkable man of faith in his day. Elisha knew this and he did not want to miss one second being around this man. He wanted his blessings! So he persisted, even disobeyed, just as Jacob disobeyed the 'man' who turned out to be Elohim! Now neither disobeyed for selfish ambition or because they wished to break Torah - they disobeyed because they did not want to lose the choicest heavenly blessing there was. What was their motive for wanting this blessing? To consume it upon their lusts? Not at all! They were moved just as your father Abraham was of whom it is written:
"I (Yahweh) will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing" (Gen.12:2, NIV).
Yahweh blesses for one reason only, and that is so we can be a blessing. Now if you want a blessing to bless others, and it is refused you, you have a right to fight for it. Now that 'man' who wrestled Jacob needn't have said, "Let me go", he could have just let Jacob wrestle on and win. The only reason he challenged him was to test his mettle - to see what he was made of - to see if he would actually conquer - not so much for himself, but so that Jacob could know himself. Now Jacob didn't have to become an overcomer - he could have chosen mediocrity. Elisha needn't have been so persistent but then he would not have got the double blessing he desired - a double blessing which he used to full effect in the blessing of others.
So I ask you this question: why do you want what you want? Is it to consume on your own lusts or is it to be a blessing to others? Many people want me to be their spiritual father and I tell them, no. I am not 'collecting' sons and daughters. I need to know what they truly want and why. Likewise, why do you want to marry a particular man or woman? Is it because you 'want' them for yourself or is it because you know they will bless you in your ministry or be able to bless others? What are your reasons for wanting things?
Now a lot of people would be flattered if you asked them if they could be your father, husband, son or daughter, because they would see this as some sort of personal 'acquisition', like adding to a stamp or coin collection. But the true men and women of Elohim are not like this - they want to act, give and receive for only one reason: to be a blessing to others and to serve Yahweh to the best of their ability. By this test you will know who your first love is and not follow in the way of the Ephesians (Rev.2:4). You see, this is an 'Ephesian' ministry, an 'Ephesian' Mishpachah and many have come to us with false motives. We follow in the footsteps of the apostle John because we pursue the firstborn way of complete consecration. Not many want to but many want the blessings of this way of life without being willing to pay the price. If your motives for coming are wrong, we will find you out and send you on your way to other ministries who don't have quite the same high standards as we aspire to. If you want us because you want to join us to serve with us, then you're most welcome, and we'll more than happily give you a double blessing if we can, because we need successors! And we'll give all we have to leave a spiritual legacy worthy of the Name of Yah'shua.
Elisha has done right in disobeying Elijah, and Elijah knows it. This is indeed a worthy successor and he has proven it both by his persistence and by his right motivation. We remember a similar occurrence with the Rechabites whom Jeremiah tried to force to drink wine but they refused because their ancestor had entered into a holy covenant not to touch alcohol (Jer.35). They also chose a mobile lifestyle so Yahweh could use them. Yahweh defends and supports those who choose higher roads - always - especially when those on lower roads try to contradict or oppose them. Notice also that Yahweh told Jeremiah to tell the Rechabites to drink alcohol - it was Yahweh's initiative to test His covenant children. They passed the test with flying colours as I hope you all will if Yahweh tells a lawless Christian to tell you to abandon Torah - be true and be blessed!
You see, Elisha knew that Elijah was going to be taken from him. It was Elijah's last day on earth and there was no way that he was going to miss this. He also knew what he was going to ask of the aged prophet. He had an agenda - a righteous agenda - to be a worthy successor (2 Ki.2:3-4). And guess what happens next? Elijah again tells his apprentice not to follow him:
"Then Elijah said to him, 'Stay here, Elisha; Yahweh has sent me to Jericho.' And he replied, 'As surely as Yahweh lives and as you live, I will not leave you.' So they went to Jericho. The company of the prophets at Jericho went up to Elisha and asked him, 'Do you know that Yahweh is going to take your master from you today?' 'Yes, I know,' he replied, 'but do not speak of it'" (2 Kings 2:4-5, NIV).
You know, whenevever I read these passages I really laugh. My soul is filled with delight for this servant. He's a prophet too, he knows along with all the other prophets that Elijah is going to leave, but he's sticking his guns. Twice he's done this now. And guess what? Yes, this happens three times. Elijah says he's off to the Jordan this time, and tells Elisha to stay behind. Again he refuses. Do you not see the parallels with the three temptations of Yah'shua in the desert? Elisha's worthiness to his call is being tested. He's got independence of mind, this man, but he's no rebell - he's a true son of Yahweh.
"Fifty men of the company of the prophets went and stood at a distance, facing the place where Elijah and Elisha had stopped at the Jordan. Elijah took his cloak, rolled it up and struck the water with it. The water divided to the right and to the left, and the two of them crossed over on dry ground" (2 Kings 2:7-8, NIV).
Now what do we see? We see a Moses and a Joshua parting bodies of water! But more than that, there is great symbolic meaning in this man's crossing from the east side of the Jordan to the west - Joshua came the other way. Why is he going east? The man was a Gileadite, and Gilead is on the east side. Elijah is going home! But it is not to Tishbe that he is going - He is returning to his King, Yahweh, and to his heavenly home.
"When they had crossed, Elijah said to Elisha, 'Tell me, what can I do for you before I am taken from you?' 'Let me inherit a double portion of your spirit,' Elisha replied. 'You have asked a difficult thing,' Elijah said, 'yet if you see me when I am taken from you, it will be yours - otherwise not'" (2 Kings 2:9-10, NIV).
I love the audacity of this man! And notice that Elijah makes no firm committment to his request - the matter is left to Yahweh. After all, it is not Elijah's Ruach that is being asked for but Yahweh's. It isn't Elijah's gift to give but Yahweh's. Nevertheless, to receive it, the apprentice must overcome three obstacles, just as Yah'shua did in the Judean wilderness. He has to go home to the prophet - Elijah will not give him the blessing on the west bank but only on the east where he comes from.
And herein lies another beautiful mystery about holy fatherhood and sonship. The son must follow his father all the way home. He must go with him to his point of departure - whether it be in a chariot of fire like Elijah or to a cross like Yah'shua. And the same is true of the consecrated daughter, of whom Ruth is our model example - she follows her mother (in this case, her step-mother) all the way back to her home, for Ruth is a Moabitess and Naomi is a Judahite. Her sister, does not - Orpah goes back to Moab and into obscurity, back to her pagan past, unlike Ruth who devotedly follows her step-mother and to innumerable blessings, to become the wife of Boaz and the foremother if Yah'shua Himself.
Now, brethren and sisters, I must therefore ask a question of you this day - how far will you go to inherit the blessings of Yahweh so that you can be a blessing to many others? Will you sacrifice all, like the prophets, and make your home amongst the blessed? Or will you, like Orpah, return to the cesspits of the world? Are you willing to sacrifice your will, your self-sovereignty, your independence, and your self to be thus blessed? Because you can't be two-minded about this. It is one or the other.
Elisha, the faithful one - the one whom Scripture describes as washing his Master Elijah's hands as a mere deacon or shammash (2 Ki.3:11) - gets his answer:
"As they were walking along and talking together, suddenly a chariot of fire and horses of fire appeared and separated the two of them, and Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind. Elisha saw this and cried out, 'My father! My father! The chariots and horsemen of Israel!' And Elisha saw him no more. Then he took hold of his own clothes and tore them apart" (2 Kings 2:11-12, NIV).
I said earlier I laughed when read of Elisha's determination to be blessed. But when I read this passage my heart is moved to tears. Oh, there is so much here, I barely know where to start, and I am running out of time today. First, the cry of a son who has lost his father - and yet more than 'lost' for he at the same time sees something wonderful: "'My father! My father! The chariots and horsemen of Israel!'" Yes, the chariots and horsemen of Israel - of Jacob. Here is the final testimony of the Overcomer - one walking as Yah'shua would walk, as a redeemer of Jacob. The redeemers are warriors for only warriors and nobles ride chariots. Was not Yah'shua a warrior? Did He not conquer death for us? Elijah is being taken away into the presence of Yahweh without tasting phsyical death. He is showing us that we can overcome! We can imitate Jacob, and imitate him gloriously without going through all the lies and deception of Jacob. Elijah is the next 'along the line' in worthy successorship, pulling himself up by his own bootstraps of faith. Now there is another worthy successor, who can walk in his spiritual father's footsteps and gain his blessings by grace IN FAITH by persistence! Does not Yahweh not love righteous persistence? Did not Yah'shua commend the persistent woman who asked for bread from her neighbour in the middle of the night because a guest suddenly arrived and she had no food? (Lk.11:5-10) Will you be dissuaded or discouraged by a negative report? Joshua and Caleb were not of that kind and here is Elijah repeating Joshua's movement across the Jordan. Grasp it, brethren and sisters, grasp it. There is the basis of a whole sermon in this single event.
Elisha saw Elijah and got the double portion of the Ruach:
"[Elisha] picked up the cloak that had fallen from Elijah and went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan. Then he took the cloak that had fallen from him and struck the water with it. 'Where now is Yahweh, the Elohim of Elijah?' he asked. When he struck the water, it divided to the right and to the left, and he crossed over. The company of the prophets from Jericho, who were watching, said, 'The spirit of Elijah is resting on Elisha.' And they went to meet him and bowed to the ground before him" (2 Kings 2:13-16, NIV).
Notice from the earlier quote that Elisha "took hold of his own clothes and tore them apart". Now, doubtless you may be thinking that this was an act of grief and of mourning. And you'd be right. But there is more. To wear the robes of your forefathers you must not only take your own off but destroy them as well, especially if we are not coming out of their descent but are being grafted into Israel by adoption. We walk in the Ruach of our fathers - we are a part of a sacred company, a holy fellowship, a set-apart family of Yahweh's servants, and we must walk in echad with them. They are what the Bible calls "our fathers" and they are vitally important. That is why I bless my children with 'the blessings of the fathers', for we are one company, as the prophets were in Elijah's day. As it is written:
"I am the Elohim of your fathers, the Elohim of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob" (Acts 7:32, NIV).
Do you worship the 'Elohim of our fathers' or are you worshipping some deity that our fathers never knew? Do you ever find the Bible accounts 'strange' or unrelatable? How do you react to the stories you read in the Old Testament? Do the sayins and acts of Yahweh's servants like Elijah square with your 'image' of Yahweh? Do you walk in agreement with them or do you perhaps sometimes 'react' as though they are weird, extreme or some other negative feeling? If you want to know Yah'shua, you have to know His Father, Yahweh; and if you want to know Yahweh, meet His servants of old and learn to walk in their ways.
Do you want a model of a true father-son relationship? Then here it is. Elijah and Elisha. They epitomise the Spirit of Elijah to the full. If the men are to get it right in these last two generations then they must follow this model. Nothing else really will work in our Kingdom-building attempts until this is operational. And it can't be done legalistically. There has to be genuine Ruach and genuine power. No faking. It has to be of the same order, depth and intensity as Moses and Joshua, Joshua and Caleb and David and Jonathan. And while the men are doing this, what should the women be doing? The daughters should be surrendering to righteous mothers as Ruth did to Naomi. Only when this Spirit of Elijah is burning with sacred heat can the marriages flourish in Zion too because holy echad marriage can only prosper in the matrix of the Spirit of Elijah, with fathers and sons, and mothers and daughters, reconciled in holy spritual union with the Elohim. May this be your prayer, as it is mine, as we seek to walk in the sacred footsteps of our ancestors, our spiritual fathers and mothers, in Yah'shua our Messiah. Amen.
|Glossary of MLT Hebraic, Greek and English Terms |
For other terms and full details please see the Micropedia
AGlossary Copyright ©2007 Mishpachah Lev-Tsiyon (MLT) - All Rights Reserved
Adon(ai) = Master, a pagan fertility god, Adonis; used by many Messianics but not MLT
(a)eon(ian) = 7 dispensation- or age-long time periods, not forever (see le-olam-va-ed)
Alef-Tav = Alpha-Omega, A-Z, first and last letters of the Hebrew alphabet = Yah'shua
Amen = truly, let it be so, written Amein by some Messianics
Apocrypha = Hebraic Scriptures not a part of the Protestant canon (e.g. Baruch)
Anti-Messiah = Hebraic term for the end-time Antichrist or anyone opposed to the Messiah
antinomian = lawless Christian who disregards all or part of Torah/commandments
Ashkenazi Jew = East European Jew descended from the Turkic-Japhethite Khazars
Assembly = church, congregation, ekklesia, community, fellowship, koinonia, gathering
Azazel = the Yom Kippur scapegoat
Baal, Ba'al = any other master than Yahweh, usually demonic in MLT terminology
Bachor(im) = firstborn son(s)
Bar/Bat Mitzvah = Son/Daughter of Commandment, covenant to obey Torah at age 12
being = soul, the whole person (spirit and body), e.g. "my whole being"
Beit, bet, beth = house, e.g. Beit Yisrael (House of Israel), Beth Lechem (House of Bread)
Beit haMikdash = Yahweh's Temple in Yerushalayim
B'rit Chadashah = the New Covenant; B'rit Chadashah Scriptures = New Testament
B'rit Milah = circumcision - abolished in the B'rit Chadashah, replaced by Mikvah
canon = authoritative Scripture (Heb. qaneh, Gk. kanŰn = measuring instrument)
Catechumen = a serious, covenanted investigator seeking Mikvah or Baptism in MLT
Chag haMatzah = Feast of Unleavened Bread, second of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Chavurat Bekorot = MLT's Priesthood Order, Holy Order and Assembly of the Firstborn
Cohen = priest; Cohen Gadol = High Priest (also spelled Kohen)
Council of Yah's elohim = the heavenly Assembly of the Firstborn or Chavurat Bekorot
demon = fallen malek or angel in rebellion against Yahweh (Heb. shad; see l-Shaddai)
derech = the Way, Path or Road - Yah'shua and the Gospel are the Way
Drash = moral or homiletic interpretation of Scripture - see PaRDeS
Echad = One, Union of two or more in one (as opposed to Yachid) - see Elohim
Echad Godhead Doctrine = Father Yahweh, Son Yah'shua and Sevenfold Ruach (Mother)
Êl, Eloah, Elah = God the Father, Yahweh
Êl-Elyon = Most High God, Yahweh
Êl-Shaddai = Master/Lord over all shads or demons
Elohim = God, the Godhead (Father, Son & Holy Spirit), lit. 'Mighty One(s)', 'Ruler(s)'
elohim = Israelite judges, rulers, angels or gods (false deities, idols, demons)
emunah = faith, actively trusting, clinging or adhering to (especially Yahweh or Yah'shua)
emet = truth, Yah'shua is the Emet
Ephraimite = descendant of the patriarch Ephraim and head of Messsianic Israel
Feasts of Yahweh = the 7 annual Moedim (Pesach, Chag haMatzah, Yom haBikkurim, Shavu'ot, Yom Teruah, Yom Kippur and Sukkot)
Gan-Eden = Garden of Eden, Paradise and state of the purified heart in Messiah
goy(im) = nation(s), Israelites or gentiles not born in or converted to the Covenant
hallelu-Yah = praise Yah(weh)!
Heylel = proper name of Satan or haSatan = the Adversary, the devil
Sabbath = Yom Shabbat (Friday to Saturday sunset, add 1 day in IDL Zone)
Hochmah = Wisdom, title of the 7-fold Ruach haQodesh
IDL = International Date Line, false man-made time division in Pacific Ocean
IDL Zone = Area between the true Divine Date Line (Lake Van/Eden) and the false one
Israeli = citizen of the modern Edomite-Khazar Republic of Israel (not Biblical Israel)
Israelite = citizen of biblical state of Israel or a modern follower of the Messiah
Jew = post-biblical term describing descendants of Edomite and Khazar converts to Judaism
Johannine = pertaining to the Apostle Yochanan (e.g. Gospel of John)
Josephite = descendant of the patriarch Joseph, the head of Messianic Israel
Judahite = a person in direct descent from the patriarch Judah, forefather of the Messiah
Judaism = a Talmudic-based religion rejecting Yah'shua the Messiah
Judean = a citizen of the Kingdom or Province of Judah until the 2nd Century diaspora
Kadosh la Yahweh = set-apart or dedicated to Yahweh, 'Holiness to the Lord', MLT motto
Karaites = Jews (from 700 AD) who reject the Talmud and accept only the Tanakh
kashrut = keeping kosher, food laws of Yahweh and correspinding lifestyle
Ketuvim = Writings or Hagiographa of the Tanakh
Khazar = a Turkic convert to Judaism ~700 AD forming the Ashkenazi Jewish community
kosher = clean foods authorised by Yahweh for human consumption
Lashon Hara = evil-speaking, gossip or slander
legalism = false route to salvation through works (self-salvation)
le-olam-va-ed = dispensation- or age-long, aeonian, not eternal, forever or for eternity
Lev = heart, as in Lev-Tsiyon = heart of Zion
Lev-Tsiyon = Heart of the Fortress [of Yahweh], Hebrew name of MLT's founder
Master = Lord, Sir, Adon(ai) - (one in authority, a ruler - a king, husband, prophet, judge)
Malak(im) = Angel(s), heavenly supernatural messenger(s)
manna = wafers of honey, bread from heaven (lit. 'what is this?')
matzah = unleavened bread, see Chag haMatzah
Menorah = 7-armed candlearbra = the 7 annual Moedim and 7-fold Ruach haQodesh
Messiah = Christ; Anti-Messiah = Antichrist
Messianic Community = Body of Christ, sum total of all true believers; all true fellowships
Messianic Israel = all who worship Yahweh, trust in Yah'shua, obey Torah and overcome
Messianic Jew = Messianic convert from Judaism still clinging to Talmudic traditions
Midrash = aggadic interpretation of scripture vi‚ Drash, a scriptural discussion
Mikvah = baptism by immersion of convert into Yah'shua or of wife into husband
Mishpachah = family: nuclear, congregational, tribal or the whole of Messianic Israel
MLT = Mishpachah Lev-Tsiyon = family of the heart of the fortress [of Yahweh]
Mishpat = right-ruling or judgement
mitzvah/mitzvot = commandment(s)
moed(im) = appointment(s) of Yahweh, 7 Annual Feasts, Sabbath and Rosh Chodesh
Nefilim, Nephilim = giant offspring of materialised demons and human women
Nevi'im = prophetic writings of the Old Testament or Tanakh
New Birth = spiritual conversion in the Ruach haRishon, being 'born again' with new heart
Nidah = a woman's menstruation period during which no intercourse is permitted
Olive Branch = collection of revelations, prophecies and visions published by MLT
Paraclete = Comforter, Advocate (NEB), Counsellor, Ruach haQodesh (Gk. paraklÍtos)
PaRDeS = method of textual interpretation (homiletics) - see P'shat, Remez, Drash, Sod
Patriarch = a father who is head of his family, clan or tribe (lit. 'father-ruler')
Pentateuch = first five books of the Tanakh (Genesis-Deuteronomy), also called Torah
peribolaion = headcovering worn by daughters/wives in submission to fathers/husbands
Pesach = Passover, first of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Peshitta = an Aramaic version of the Bible
Prototrinitarianism = early, simplified MLT formulation of the Echad Godhead Doctrine
Prush(im) = Pharisee(s)
Pseudepigrapha = Non-canonical Hebrew writings additional to the Apocrypha
P'shat = literal, contextual, philological, exoteric, outer meaning of Scripture - see PaRDeS
Qadosh Qadoshim = Holy of Holies, most sacred set-apart room of the Beit haMikdash
Qodesh, Kodesh = set-apart, holy (see Ruach haQodesh)
Rabbi = Teacher, term used by Messianic Jews and some Messianic Israelites = Pastor
Refuge, the 12 Cities of = divinely protected MLT fortresses during the 7-year Tribulation
Remez = hint or allegorical level of Hebraic understanding of Scripture - see PaRDeS
Rosh Chodesh = monthly New Moon appointment of Yahweh
ruach = spirit of a person (lit.'breath')
Ruach Elohim = Spirit of God (the Spirit of the collective Godhead or Elohim)
Ruach haChamashee = 5th Ruach presides over Yom Teruah and Yom Chamashee
Ruach haQodesh = the Sevenfold Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost (lit. 'Set-Apart Breath')
Ruach haRevee = 4th Ruach presides over Shavu'ot, Yom Revee and Bar Mitzvah
Ruach haRishon = 1st Ruach presides over Pesach, Yom Rishon and the New Birth
Ruach haShanee = 2nd Ruach presides over Chag haMatzah and Yom Shanee
Ruach haSheshi = 6th Ruach presides over Yom Kippur and Yom Sheshi
Ruach haShleshi = 3rd Ruach presides over Yom haBikkurim, Yom Shleshi and Mikvah
Sabbath = Yom Shabbat (Friday to Saturday sunset, add 1 day in IDL Zone)
Satan = rebel archangel Heylel, father of lies, devil, chief demon (lit.'Adversary')
Sephardic Jew = West European Jew of mixed blood containing many Judahites
Septuagint = Greek translation of the Tanakh, LXX
Shegal haShabbat = 7th Ruach (Sabbath Queen) presides over Sukkot and Yom Shabbat
Shekinah = Divine Presence and Glory of Yahweh-Elohim
Set-apart = holy, sanctified, consecrated, dedicated, separated (to and by Yahweh)
Shabbat-Shabbaton = High Sabbath (e.g. Yom Kippur)
Shalom = heavenly peace, standard Hebraic greeting invoking Yahweh's peace
Shamash(im) = servant(s), deacon(s), attendant(s)
Shavu'ot = Pentecost or Weeks, fourth of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Sheol = grave or pit, euphamism for Hades or hell - also see Tartarus
shofar = ram's horn, blown during Yahweh's Moedim
simcha = joy, keynote of Sukkot
Sod = mystical, anagogic, inner or esoteric understanding of Scripture - see PaRDeS
Sukkot = Tabernacles or Booths, seventh of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Synagogue = Greek word used by Jews and Messianics (but not MLT) for a meeting house
talmid(a) = male/female disciple or student
Talmud = scriptures, teachings and commentaries belonging to non-Messianic Judaism
Tanakh = acronym for Old Testament Scriptures - Torah, Nevi'im & Ketuvim
Tartarus = place of imprisonment under the earth for rebellious angels and Nephilim
teshuvah = repentance, remorse and contrition leading back to Torah obedience
Torah = Yahweh's teachings or Law; New Covenant Torah includes Yah'shua's teachings
Tribulation, the Great = the final 7 years of the present aeon when Anti-Messiah rules
Trinity = Catholic Godhead formula - see Echad Godhead Doctrine and Prototrinitarianism
Tsiyon = Zion, a fortress, a name of Jerusalem and a prominent hill
Tzitzit/Tizitziyot = tassel(s) worn by men in remembrance of Torah
Universalism = salvation of all at the cosmic Yovel, with different rewards and punishments
Yachid = one, single person or item, as opposed to Echad (many in one, unity)
Yah'shua the Messiah = Jesus Christ (the Son)
Yahudah = Judah - see Judahite
Yahweh, Yah, YHWH = the true Name of our Heavenly Father, also carried by Yah'shua
Yahweh-Elohim = LORD God (the Father, Yahweh as Head of the Godhead or Elohim)
Yahweh haQatan = the sent Yahweh = Yah(weh)'shua, Malak of Yahweh's Presence
Yam Suf = Sea of Reeds, the true Israelite Exodus water crossing, not the Red Sea
Yarden = Jordan River (lit. 'meanderer')
Yerushalayim = Jerusalem
Yisrael = Israel (lit. 'ruling with l') = true believers under the New Covenant
Yom Chamashee = 5th day of the week (Thursday, Friday in IDL Zone)
Yom Din, Yom haDin = (the) Day of Judgement
Yom haBikkurim = Feast of Firstfruits, third of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Yom Revee = 4th day of the week (Wednesday, Thursday in IDL Zone)
Yom Rishon = 1st day of the week (Sunday, Monday in IDL Zone)
Yom Kippur = Day of Atonement, sixth of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Yom Shabbat = 7th day of the week and Sabbath Rest (Saturday, Sunday in IDL Zone)
Yom Shanee = 2nd day of the week (Monday, Tuesday in IDL Zone)
Yom Sheshi = 6th day of the week (Friday, Saturday in IDL Zone)
Yom Shleshi = 3rd day of the week (Tuesday, Wednesday in IDL Zone)
Yom Teruah = Day of Trumpets, fifth of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Yosef = Joseph - see Josephite
Yovel = Jubilee or Year of Jubilee
Zaqen(im) = elder(s) of an assembly or congregation, or senior members of a community
ZoŽ Life = Greek term for spiritual life in the Messiah
Commonly Used MLT Abbreviations
For additional abbreviations and explanations,
please see the Micropedia
Amp.V(er). = Amplified Version of the Bible
Aram. = Aramaic
AV = Authorised Version of the Bible - see KJV
BCAY = B'rit Chadashah Assembly of Yahweh - see NCCG
BoA = Books of Abraham (e.g. 1Abr., 2Abr., etc.)
cp, cf = compare with
CB(Q) = Chavurat Bekorot
CEV = Contemporary English Version of the Bible
ch. = chapter
CJB = Complete Jewish Bible
CLNT = Concordant Literal New Testament
CYe = Council of Yah's elohim
Eng. = English
ff. = and onwards/forwards
fn = footnote
Gk. = Greek
GNB = Good News Bible - see TEV
Heb. = Hebrew, Hebraic
HEM = Holy Echad Marriage, eternal marriage
HO = Holy Order - see Chavurat Bekorot
HOC = Holy Order Collection of revelations - see OB
HRV = Hebraic-Roots Version of the Bible
ibid. = ibidem (lit. 'in the same place'), referring to a book previously cited
ICJC = Independent Church of Jesus Christ, earlier name of NCCF
ISRV = Institute for Scripture Research Version of the Bible
JB = Jerusalem Bible
JBP/Phillips = J.B.Phillips translation of the New Testament
JNT = Jewish New Testament
KJV = King James Version of the Bible - see AV
LB = Living Bible
lit. = literally or literature
LXX = Septuagint, Greek translation of the OT
MLT = Mishpachah Lev-Tsiyon
Moff. = Moffatt translation of the Bible
MRC = Messianic Renewed Covenant Version of the NT
MS(S) = Manuscript(s)
NASB, NASV = New American Standard Bible/Version
NC&C = New Covenants & Commandments - see OB
NCCF = New Covenant Christian Fellowship, earlier name of NCCG
NCCG = New Covenant Church of God, earlier name of MLT - see BCAY
NCP = New Covenant Press, publishing arm of MLT
NCW = New Covenant Witness, MLT magazine
NEB = New English Bible
NIV = New International Version of the Bible
NKJV = New King James Version of the Bible
Nor. = Norwegian
NT = New Testament, B'rit Chadashah
NWT = New World Translation of the Bible, unreliable Jehovah's Witness version
OB = Olive Branch - see NC&C
op.cit. = opere citato (lit. in the work cited)
OT = Old Testament, Tanakh
p(p). = page(s)
pl. = plural - see s.
PWNC = Prophetic Words of the New Covenant, revelation cataloging system - see OB
QED = quod erat demonstrandum (lit. which was shown to be proved)
RCF = Restoration Christian Fellowship, earlier name of ICJC
RhQ = Ruach haQodesh, Holy Spirit
RSTNE = Restoration Scriptures True Name Edition of the Bible
RSV = Revised Standard Version of the Bible
RV = Revised Version of the Bible
s. = singular - see pl.
S&G = Smith & Goodspeed Version of the Bible
TEV = Today's English Version of the Bible - see GNB
Vulg. = Biblia Vulgata, Latin Vulgate translation of the Bible
WEB = World English Bible
This page was first created on 17 March 2007
Last updated on 17 March 2007
Copyright ©2006 Mishpachah Lev-Tsiyon (MLT) - All Rights Reserved