by John Schoenheit
Having an example to follow is a big help to all of us. That point is especially well made in the poem, “Sermons We See,” by Edgar Guest, which opens: “I’d rather see a sermon than hear one any day.” In that regard, the prophet Elisha was a great example to Jesus Christ, for whom the Old Testament was written. Both Jesus and Elisha came after an “Elijah” (John the Baptist was figuratively called “Elijah”). Elisha means, “My God is Savior,” while Yeshua (the Hebrew of Jesus) means, “My Yahweh is salvation.”
Like Jesus, Elisha was a powerful man of God, but not in a worldly way. He never was king, never built a city or Temple, never conquered an enemy army, nor wrote any books. Like Jesus, he defined his greatness by his relationship with his God. Setting a powerful example of faith, Elisha parted the Jordan River, multiplied food, healed a leper, made the “blind” to see, raised the dead, did various miracles, and finally, even in his death, gave life to the dead. As well as being an example to Jesus, Elisha’s example challenges us to be an example to others.
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