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2 Kings 2 Living Bible (TLB)

1-2 Now the time came for the Lord to take Elijah to heaven—by means of a whirlwind! Elijah said to Elisha as they left Gilgal, “Stay here, for the Lord has told me to go to Bethel.”

But Elisha replied, “I swear to God that I won’t leave you!”

So they went on together to Bethel. There the young prophets of Bethel Seminary came out to meet them and asked Elisha, “Did you know that the Lord is going to take Elijah away from you today?”

“Quiet!” Elisha snapped. “Of course I know it.”

Then Elijah said to Elisha, “Please stay here in Bethel, for the Lord has sent me to Jericho.”

But Elisha replied again, “I swear to God that I won’t leave you.” So they went on together to Jericho.

Then the students at Jericho Seminary came to Elisha and asked him, “Do you know that the Lord is going to take away your master today?”

“Will you please be quiet?” he commanded. “Of course I know it!”

6-7 Then Elijah said to Elisha, “Please stay here, for the Lord has sent me to the Jordan River.”

But Elisha replied as before, “I swear to God that I won’t leave you.”

So they went on together and stood beside the Jordan River as fifty of the young prophets watched from a distance. Then Elijah folded his cloak together and struck the water with it; and the river divided and they went across on dry ground!

When they arrived on the other side Elijah said to Elisha, “What wish shall I grant you before I am taken away?”

And Elisha replied, “Please grant me twice as much prophetic power as you have had.”

10 “You have asked a hard thing,” Elijah replied. “If you see me when I am taken from you, then you will get your request. But if not, then you won’t.”

11 As they were walking along, talking, suddenly a chariot of fire, drawn by horses of fire, appeared and drove between them, separating them, and Elijah was carried by a whirlwind into heaven.

12 Elisha saw it and cried out, “My father! My father! The chariot of Israel and the charioteers!”

As they disappeared from sight he tore his robe. 13-14 Then he picked up Elijah’s cloak and returned to the bank of the Jordan River, and struck the water with it.

“Where is the Lord God of Elijah?” he cried out. And the water parted and Elisha went across!

15 When the young prophets of Jericho saw what had happened, they exclaimed, “The spirit of Elijah rests upon Elisha!” And they went to meet him and greeted him respectfully.

16 “Sir,” they said, “just say the word and fifty of our best athletes will search the wilderness for your master; perhaps the Spirit of the Lord has left him on some mountain or in some ravine.”

“No,” Elisha said, “don’t bother.”

17 But they kept urging until he was embarrassed and finally said, “All right, go ahead.” Then fifty men searched for three days, but didn’t find him.

18 Elisha was still at Jericho when they returned. “Didn’t I tell you not to go?” he growled.

19 Now a delegation of the city officials of Jericho visited Elisha. “We have a problem,” they told him. “This city is located in beautiful natural surroundings, as you can see; but the water is bad and causes our women to have miscarriages.”[a]

20 “Well,” he said, “bring me a new bowl filled with salt.” So they brought it to him.

21 Then he went out to the city well and threw the salt in and declared, “The Lord has healed these waters. They shall no longer cause death or miscarriage.”

22 And sure enough! The water was purified, just as Elisha had said.

23 From Jericho he went to Bethel. As he was walking along the road, a gang of young men from the city began mocking and making fun of him because of his bald head. 24 He turned around and cursed them in the name of the Lord; and two female bears came out of the woods and tore forty-two of them. 25 Then he went to Mount Carmel and finally returned to Samaria.


  1. 2 Kings 2:19 causes our women to have miscarriages, implied in v. 21. Literally, “the land is unfruitful.”
Living Bible (TLB)

The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

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