Now fifty men of the sons of the prophets went and stood opposite them at a distance, while the two of them stood by the Jordan. Elijah took his mantle and folded it together and struck the waters, and they were divided here and there, so that the two of them crossed over on dry ground.
When they had crossed over, Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask what I shall do for you before I am taken from you.” And Elisha said, “Please, let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.”He said, “You have asked a hard thing. Nevertheless, if you see me when I am taken from you, it shall be so for you; but if not, it shall not be so.” As they were going along and talking, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire and horses of fire which separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind to heaven. Elisha saw it and cried out, “My father, my father, the chariots of Israel and its horsemen!” And he saw Elijah no more. Then he took hold of his own clothes and tore them in two pieces. He also took up the mantle of Elijah that fell from him and returned and stood by the bank of the Jordan.
He took the mantle of Elijah that fell from him and struck the waters and said, “Where is the LORD, the God of Elijah?” And when he also had struck the waters, they were divided here and there; and Elisha crossed over. 2 Kings 2:7-14
Let us examine the anointing of Elisha compared to that of Elijah. Clearly, Elisha sought the power of Elijah. In fact, he sought a double portion of his power. But he did not seek God for this power. Rather, he sought Elijah. Nevertheless, from the scripture it is clear that there was some sort of transfer of power before Elijah was taken up in the whirlwind. But we are lead to wonder what type of relationship Elisha had with God based on the question that he asked: “Where is the God of Elijah.” We might wonder: “Who was the God of Elisha?”
Surely there is noting wrong with doing ministry under the power of the anointing. In fact, that is the way to do ministry. Elijah had a powerful anointing. We remember that he defeated all the prophets of Baal on the same day. Jesus had an anointing:
You know of Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. Acts 10:38
So what could be wrong with an anointing from God? We could ask this question a different way. Is it possible to misuse a gift from God? Let us examine one of the first acts of Elisha after he received his anointing:
Then he (Elisha) went up from there to Bethel; and as he was going up by the way, young lads came out from the city and mocked him and said to him, “Go up, you baldhead; go up, you baldhead!” When he looked behind him and saw them, he cursed them in the name of the LORD. Then two female bears came out of the woods and tore up forty-two lads of their number. 2 Kings 2:23-24
It is clear that Elisha did not have the same character of Elijah even though he possessed a portion of Elijah’s anointing. A certain anointing is apparently transferable. But a Godly relationship and Godly character are not directly transferable.
Jesus foretold of a day when people would be looking everywhere for signs and wonders and the power of God:
And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation:
Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you. Luke 17:20-21
People are seeking the power of God today, but are they seeking a deeper relationship with Him?
Read: The Anointng Part II