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Updated: Dec 1, 2020

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INTRODUCTION. Elijah began the destruction of Baal worship in Israel by his contest on Mount Carmel with the prophets of Baal. Elisha finished this cleansing of the land of Baal worship together with Jehu, the king of Israel.

Although Elijah and Elisha were both prophets of God, in many ways they were quite different. Elijah suddenly appeared and disappeared on the scene, but Elisha moved about steadily among the people during his lifelong ministry. Elijah came from an area of rugged hills while Elisha's home was in a peaceful valley. Elijah was stern, demonstrated by his calling for fire from heaven in the contest with the prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel (I Kings 18). Elisha was more gentle, calling for a minstrel to play for him one time to help with his prophetic mission (II Kings 3:15).

One time during his long ministry, Elisha was in Gilgal during a drought. He ordered his servant to prepare food for the sons of the prophets at that place. One man gathered some poisonous wild gourds by mistake and added them to the pot of food. Elisha cast some meal (flour) into the pot and the contents became harmless.

Another time when a man brought him twenty barley loaves and some grain, he ordered him to place the food before one hundred men. The men ate and there was enough to eat and some left over.

In another incident, the sons of the prophets wanted to build a new dwelling place at the Jordan River. As the men were cutting down wood, one man's ax head fell into the water. The man was distressed because the ax was borrowed. Elisha miraculously recovered the ax head.

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