2 Kings 2:1
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
When the LORD was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal.

New Living Translation
When the LORD was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were traveling from Gilgal.

English Standard Version
Now when the LORD was about to take Elijah up to heaven by a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal.

New American Standard Bible
And it came about when the LORD was about to take up Elijah by a whirlwind to heaven, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

King James Bible
And it came to pass, when the LORD would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
The time had come for the LORD to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind. Elijah and Elisha were traveling from Gilgal,

International Standard Version
As the time drew near when the LORD was about to take Elijah to heaven in a wind storm, Elijah and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal.

NET Bible
Just before the LORD took Elijah up to heaven in a windstorm, Elijah and Elisha were traveling from Gilgal.

New Heart English Bible
It happened, when the LORD would take up Elijah by a whirlwind into heaven, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
When the LORD was going to take Elijah to heaven in a windstorm, Elijah and Elisha left Gilgal.

JPS Tanakh 1917
And it came to pass, when the LORD would take up Elijah by a whirlwind into heaven, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

New American Standard 1977
And it came about when the LORD was about to take up Elijah by a whirlwind to heaven, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And it came to pass, when the LORD would take Elijah up into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

King James 2000 Bible
And it came to pass, when the LORD would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

American King James Version
And it came to pass, when the LORD would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

American Standard Version
And it came to pass, when Jehovah would take up Elijah by a whirlwind into heaven, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And it came to pass, when the Lord would take up Elias into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elias and Eliseus were going from Galgal.

Darby Bible Translation
And it came to pass when Jehovah would take up Elijah into the heavens by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

English Revised Version
And it came to pass, when the LORD would take up Elijah by a whirlwind into heaven, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

Webster's Bible Translation
And it came to pass, when the LORD would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

World English Bible
It happened, when Yahweh would take up Elijah by a whirlwind into heaven, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

Young's Literal Translation
And it cometh to pass, at Jehovah's taking up Elijah in a whirlwind to the heavens, that Elijah goeth, and Elisha, from Gilgal,
Study Bible
Elijah Taken to Heaven
1And it came about when the LORD was about to take up Elijah by a whirlwind to heaven, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal. 2Elijah said to Elisha, "Stay here please, for the LORD has sent me as far as Bethel." But Elisha said, "As the LORD lives and as you yourself live, I will not leave you." So they went down to Bethel.…
Cross References
Hebrews 11:5
By faith Enoch was taken up so that he did not see death. He could not be found, because God had taken him away. For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God.

Genesis 5:24
Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.

Joshua 4:19
Now the people came up from the Jordan on the tenth of the first month and camped at Gilgal on the eastern edge of Jericho.

1 Kings 19:16
and Jehu the son of Nimshi you shall anoint king over Israel; and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah you shall anoint as prophet in your place.

2 Kings 1:18
Now the rest of the acts of Ahaziah which he did, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel?

2 Kings 4:38
When Elisha returned to Gilgal, there was a famine in the land. As the sons of the prophets were sitting before him, he said to his servant, "Put on the large pot and boil stew for the sons of the prophets."
Treasury of Scripture

And it came to pass, when the LORD would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal.

take up

Genesis 5:24 And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.

1 Kings 19:4 But he himself went a day's journey into the wilderness, and came …

Luke 9:51 And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received …

Acts 1:9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken …

Hebrews 11:5 By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was …

Revelation 11:12 And they heard a great voice from heaven saying to them, Come up …

by a whirlwind

1 Kings 18:12 And it shall come to pass, as soon as I am gone from you, that the …

1 Kings 19:11 And he said, Go forth, and stand on the mount before the LORD. And, …

Job 38:1 Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said,

Elisha

1 Kings 19:16-21 And Jehu the son of Nimshi shall you anoint to be king over Israel…

Gilgal

Joshua 4:19 And the people came up out of Jordan on the tenth day of the first …

Joshua 5:9 And the LORD said to Joshua, This day have I rolled away the reproach …

(1) And it came to pass . . . whirlwind.--The compiler has prefixed this heading to the following narrative by way of connection with the general thread of the history. It seems to be indicated that the event happened in the beginning of the reign of Jehoram; but see Note on 2Chronicles 21:12.

When the Lord would take up.--When Jehovah caused Elijah to go up, or ascend. This anticipates the conclusion of the story.

Into heaven.--Heb., accusative of direction, as in 2Kings 2:11. The LXX. renders, ?? ??? ??? ??????? "as into heaven," perhaps to suggest that not the visible heavens, but God, was the real goal of the prophet's ascension.

By a whirlwind.--In the storm.

Gilgal.--Heb., the Gilgal, i.e., the Ring (comp. Isaiah 28:28, "wheel"), a descriptive name of more than one place. Here, Gilgal in Ephraim, the present Jiljlia, which stands on a hill south-west of Seiln (Shiloh), near the road leading thence to Jericho. (See Deuteronomy 11:30; Hosea 4:15; Amos 4:4.) Hosea and Amos connect Gilgal with Bethel, as a sanctuary. It was probably marked by a ring of stones like those at Stonehenge and Avebury. From this spot the mountain land of Gilead, the Great Sea, and the snowy heights of Hermon, were all visible; so that the prophet could take from thence a last look at the whole country which had been the scene of his earthly activity.

Verse 1. - And it came to pass, when the Lord would take up Elijah into heaven. The subject is introduced as one of general notoriety, the writer professing rather to give the exact details of a well-known fact, than to relate a new fact unknown to his readers. "When the time came," he means to say, "for Elijah's translation, of which you, my readers, all know, the following were the circumstances under which it took place." The fact itself was deeply impressed on the Jewish consciousness. "Elias," says the Sou of Sirach, "was taken up in a whirlwind of fire, and in a chariot of fiery homes" (Ecclus. 48:9). He was ranked with Enoch, as not having seen death (Josephus, 'Ant. Jud.,' 9:2. § 2), and was viewed as "continuing in heaven a mysterious life, which no death had ever interrupted, whence he was ready at any time to return to earth" (Ewald, 'History of Israel,' vol. 4. p. 113). The scribes thought that he was beyond all doubt to make his appearance upon the earth in person, before the coming of the Messiah (Matthew 16:10). By a whirlwind. Sa'arach is not so much an actual "whirlwind" as a storm or atmospheric disturbance (συσσεισμός, LXX.). It is a word which only occurs here in the historical Scriptures. That Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal. Elisha had become to Elijah what Joshua was to Moses (Exodus 24:13) - his "minister," or regular attendant, from the time of his call at Abel-meholah (1 Kings 19:21). Elijah had no fixed residence, but moved from place to place as the Spirit of God suggested. His wanderings had now brought him to Gilgal (probably Jiljilieh, near Nablous), one of the most ancient sanctuaries of the land (1 Samuel 10:8; 1 Samuel 11:15, etc.), celebrated in the history of Saul and Samuel. And it came to pass, when the Lord would take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind,.... Thereby lifting him up from the earth, and which, as it was the purpose and will of God, Elijah had notice of, as appears by his motions to different places, under a divine direction:

that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal, where it seems they met, a place where the Israelites first pitched when they came over Jordan, and where the tabernacle was for some time, and was famous for religious services, see Joshua 4:19. CHAPTER 2

2Ki 2:1-10. Elijah Divines Jordan.

1-7. when the Lord would take up Elijah—A revelation of this event had been made to the prophet; but, unknown to him, it had also been revealed to his disciples, and to Elisha in particular, who kept constantly beside him.

Gilgal—This Gilgal (Jiljil) was near Ebal and Gerizim; a school of the prophets was established there. At Beth-el there was also a school of the prophets, which Elijah had founded, notwithstanding that place was the headquarters of the calf-worship; and at Jericho there was another [2Ki 2:4]. In travelling to these places, which he had done through the impulse of the Spirit (2Ki 2:2, 4-6), Elijah wished to pay a farewell visit to these several institutions, which lay on his way to the place of ascension and, at the same time, from a feeling of humility and modesty, to be in solitude, where there would be no eye-witnesses of his glorification. All his efforts, however, to prevail on his attendant to remain behind, were fruitless. Elisha knew that the time was at hand, and at every place the sons of the prophets spoke to him of the approaching removal of his master. Their last stage was at the Jordan. They were followed at a distance by fifty scholars of the prophets, from Jericho, who were desirous, in honor of the great occasion, to witness the miraculous translation of the prophet. The revelation of this striking event to so many was a necessary part of the dispensation; for it was designed to be under the law, like that of Enoch in the patriarchal age, a visible proof of another state, and a type of the resurrection of Christ.2:1-8 The Lord had let Elijah know that his time was at hand. He therefore went to the different schools of the prophets to give them his last exhortations and blessing. The removal of Elijah was a type and figure of the ascension of Christ, and the opening of the kingdom of heaven to all believers. Elisha had long followed Elijah, and he would not leave him now when he hoped for the parting blessing. Let not those who follow Christ come short by tiring at last. The waters of Jordan, of old, yielded to the ark; now, to the prophet's mantle, as a token of God's presence. When God will take up his faithful ones to heaven, death is the Jordan which they must pass through, and they find a way through it. The death of Christ has divided those waters, that the ransomed of the Lord may pass over. O death, where is thy sting, thy hurt, thy terror!
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