The Translation of Elijah
II Kings 2:1, 9-11
INTRODUCTION: The story of the translation of Elijah is a thrilling account of God removing one of His faithful servants to glory. Of course, there is nothing unusual about God taking one of His saints home--we are all going home to be with the Lord someday. However, what makes this story so interesting is that Elijah had not yet died. He went to heaven in his physical body--he was translated or as we would say, "he was raptured."
The word "rapture," is from the Latin word "rapio," meaning "to seize" or to be "caught up." One day all the saints will be caught up to be with Christ. In II Kings 2:16, the Bible says that the sons of the prophets, who were with Elijah, went looking for him--they couldn't find him.
Again, in the book of Genesis, we read of another account of a sudden disappearance--the translation of one of God's servants, Enoch: Genesis 5:22-24, "And Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years, and begat sons and daughters:  And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years:  And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him."
In Hebrews 11:5, there is a reference to Enoch's disappearance. As with Elijah, the Bible says that people looked for Enoch but they couldn't find him--he had suddenly disappeared: "By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God."
Are you aware, dear Christian friend, that someday soon, and I believe in the not-too-distant future, God is going to call the saints home--all of us? Like Enoch, and like Elijah, we will be raptured or caught up to glory in our physical bodies.
I want to give you a brief outline this evening, as I develop our thoughts around the title, "The Translation of Elijah."
I. The Sequence of Events
II. The Timing of the Raptu ...
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