In the experience of all who have learned through Mrs. Eddy's teachings to ponder lovingly the records of the Scriptures, there are moments when some well-known Bible story is suddenly illumined with the glow and radiance of divine Science. With this illumination great lessons and a great joy pour into the waiting consciousness, and gratitude stirs an earnest longing to share this joy with others. Such was the writer's experience not long ago, while reading in the second book of Kings the record of the parting of Elijah from Elisha; and it is with the desire that it may help others as it helped her, that she offers the lessons gained.

Briefly the story is this. The aged prophet, after many experiences of strenuous work, of faithful conflict against the beliefs in false powers, false laws, false gods, had attained a time of comparative peace, had seen the false prophets and kings overcome, famine turned into plenty, and schools for sons of the prophets established in many towns. Realizing more and more his nearness to the Father, seeing that the younger students would be stirred and uplifted to greater individual activity when left to rely on God alone, he felt the time of his departure was at hand. He told Elisha, his student and companion, that God had called him to Bethel, and suggested that Elisha should stay behind. Elisha refused, wishing to accompany and serve his master to the last. On their arrival at Bethel, sons of the prophets came out and warned Elisha that God would take away his master; but, still unmoved, he journeyed on, though Elijah repeated his offer to leave him behind. At Jericho the same scene took place, with the same results. At Jordan, the sons of the prophets stood afar off, and Elijah and Elisha were left alone. Then Elijah asked his companion what good thing he should give him, and Elisha requested that he might receive a double portion of his master's spirit.

We know the rest. To the material sense of the sons of the prophets, a whirlwind arose which seemed to carry Elijah up with it, and to the spiritual sense of Elisha appeared a chariot of fire, from which fell the mantle of inspiration. Next we read the natural outcome of what each seemed to see. The students hastened out to seek a material body, and Elisha awoke to a great life-work. After three days' search, the former returned with their eyes opened to the barrenness of the land (the material state of consciousness) in which they were dwelling, and they requested Elisha to purify the waters which had made it so. This Elisha declared done, using salt as the symbol of purification. The Bible Story is brief indeed, but illumined by divine Science its teaching is profound and full of hope and inspiration.

Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.

February 4, 1911

We'd love to hear from you!

Easily submit your testimonies, articles, and poems online.