After Elijah began mentoring Elisha we pick the story up in 2 Kings 2; it’s time for Elijah to leave this world for the next and Elisha seems devastated. He has one last request from his mentor: a double portion of his spirit. I’m not convinced Elijah knew exactly what he meant but the promise was,
“You have asked a hard thing; yet, if you see me as I am being taken from you, it shall be so for you, but if you do not see me, it shall not be so.” 2 Kings 2:10 ESV
“If you see me…” What a powerful phrase and one we see used in the New Testament. Last week I directed your attention to Elisha being the foreshadow of Jesus; let’s continue that image as we concentrate on seeing.
After the resurrection we find Mary Magdalene (John 20) face to face with her Savior and her response? She runs and announces to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord.” They, in turn, ‘see’ Him as well and receive the Holy Spirit.
Interestingly, this type of vision, spiritual sight, is reminiscent of Jesus’ own words:
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” Matthew 5:8 ESV
What about the double portion? As I mentioned last week Elisha performed twice, double the number of miracles as Elijah which indicates double power of the Holy Spirit. The disciples receive the Holy Spirit in John 20 and yet they are ‘baptized with the Holy Spirit’ in Acts 2. Double portion.
The life of Elisha and the disciples show us we need a double portion of His Spirit after we receive salvation as well. We have to ask ourselves, ‘have we seen Jesus?’ Have we recognized Him as the only way to God and the Holy Spirit as our source of power to live in the Kingdom of God? That’s our first portion, so to speak. From there the Apostle Paul tells us to be filled, filled, and filled again with His Spirit (Eph. 5:18), that’s the second portion, the double amount that is crucial to living a life that is pleasing to God and filled with empowerment for everyday ministry. If the followers of Christ who believed in Him needed to be filled from Pentecost and on … so do we.
When we open our spiritual eyes and see Jesus, see His wonderful promises being fulfilled, and see His Hand in our life we enter into that relationship with Him in the upper story. It’s not our natural eyes anymore, it’s our ability to see Him in everyday life.
… we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
2 Corinthians 4:17-18 ESV
The promise of the double portion of His Spirit is yours for the asking, receive the Holy Spirit and continue to be filled with Him every day.