The life of Elisha leaves us longing for a greater prophet that will put an end to rebellion, mercifully transform hearts, and bring a lasting reconciliation between God and humanity.
Witnessing Christ from the Old Testament Bible Studies
During Elijah’s ministry, God would teach his people and his prophet to trust in him. First, through demonstrations of his power and might with fire and rain sent down on Mount Carmel, but then with the gentle whisper of his Word, God restored his people to himself.
2 Samuel and 1 Kings continue Israel’s journey of transition from a theocracy to a monarchy.
Up to this point in her history, Israel has had only one king—God Himself. Leaders such as Moses, Joshua, Samuel, and all the judges were leaders, not kings. After generations of failing to follow God’s commands, Israel now saw fit to replace their theocracy with a monarchy.
During the dark days of the Judges, defined by cycles of faithlessness, idolatry, and oppression, the faiths of Ruth, Boaz, Hannah, and Samuel shine bright. Their stories also point forward to the coming Redeemer.
The book of Judges contains a series of cycles. First, Israel rebels, then the Lord sends repression. Israel repents, and the Lord rescues. After a season of rest, the Israelites rebel once again, and the cycle repeats.
Through conquest, condemnation, rescue, redemption, and restoration, God draws his people closer to his heart of grace and demonstrates himself to be the only thing in the universe that can truly save them and grant them the blessings of an ultimate promised land.
Moses is preparing the Israelites for their transition from being children of the wilderness to children of the promised land. Repeated throughout the book of Deuteronomy are words like “listen, remember, guard, keep, do, and obey.”
God had delivered them from slavery, brought them through the waters of the Red Sea, miraculously fed them and gave them water, set up a system of worship and law, disciplined them, and forgave their rebellion and doubt many times over.
Throughout this study, we will see that humanity cannot become holy through its work and movement toward God; instead, it is God who works and moves toward humans.